Adam Wieser (AW): Hi everyone, welcome to another episode of Loremaker’s Guide to the Galaxy. My names Adam Wieser, Associate Writer here at CIG Los Angeles and I’m one of the members of the Lore Team that is working here on Star Citizen and Squadron 42. For those who haven’t seen the show, Loremaker’s is a series where a member of the lore staff takes you to a system that’ll appear in the game, and give you some insight into the history and maybe some of the properties about the system that we thought we when started putting them together. So on today’s show we are going to take you to a system that can’t seem to escape it’s name, and that system is Castra.
So we’re going to start here on earth, let’s put this on in. Now Castra is actually an ancient Roman term which describes land used by the military for defensive purposes. So that seems to be the problem that they’re having is out living the fact that during the cold war with the Xi’An, this system was a military only system that was used to basically ensure that if an attack ever did happen, that we would be prepared for it.
Now we’ve just zoomed in over to Castra, as you can see the star here is massively huge which is why we’re so zoomed in on it. So as we back it up, I’ll give you a little perspective on it. This is the other thing about Castra which is really, really interesting. Not only is it kind of stuck in it’s past, it also has this B-type main sequence star at the center. Now this thing is genuinely massive when compared to the sun at the heart of our system. It’s about four times as massive as our sun, and it’s close to 300 times as bright. It is blue, white in colour so this is an accurate representation of what the sun should look at. It’s also, the B-type type stars are interesting for a lot of different reasons which we don’t have time to get into, but they’re also referred to as very energetic and they are also deemed to have relatively short life spans, at least on a stellar scale. This thing lives anywhere between 10 to 100 million years, where our sun normally lives close to about 10 billion years. So only a fraction of what our sun lives to.
So as we look here, it’s a two planet system: Castra I and Castra II. I’m gonna back out for one second because the important thing to show you as to why this system has been stuck in the fate that it is, is that it has five Jump Points here, the most important one being to Oya right up there. Now Castra was first discovered in 2544 by UPE military pathfinders that were searching this side of space just to see if they could find any additional systems out there. 14 years prior the UPE had their first encounter with the Xi’An and things did not necessarily go so well. So the military was scrambling to make sure that the eastern side of the empire, you know, there weren’t any weak spots there that the Xi’An could come through.
Well when Castra was first charted they noted that there wasn’t a lot of interest, there was, I think unremarkable was the term used to describe it. Well that changed decades after it was discovered when this jump to Oya was found. What was also found in Oya that really made the government kind of take attention to it was a small pocket of Xi’An’s who had basically started their own civilization on Oya. Now that this system, Castra, was directly connected to a system with Xi’An, the military took great interest in this system and just flooded it with money, even put a large kind of orbital platform out in space to be able to handle capital ships and long range bombers that would come through the area.
Now the Xi’An settlement on Oya, basically they fled and this became part of the parry line system which meant Castra was one jump away from being directly on the front lines.
When this happened they flooded a lot of money in and it just kinda sat there… the Cold War with the Xi’An didn’t progress and eventually a few hundred years later as tensions died down, the UEE soon realized that there was no reason to keep the system under strict military control anymore. So, what they did is they decided to start opening it up to the public and let the public come in and hopefully bring new life to this system.
Sweetheart land deals were given to businesses and to people willing to move on in but even still to this day there are certain sections of the system especially on Cascom, the second planet, that are strictly reserved for the military just in case.
Now if we go down to a more granule level, here we’ll go look at Castra I. This is a terrestrial, coreless world, no real resources on it worth mentioning. The most interesting thing about it is it’s nickname, Bullseye, which was given by the UEE military which supposedly used this planet for target practice.
Moving on, we’re going to go to the second and only habitable planet in the system and this is Cascom, which is actually short for Castra Command. It’s a military designation that was given to the planet once the military moved in. To this day a lot of the politicians in Castra are not the biggest fans of that name and kind of wish it would have something a little different but it’s been around so long it’s stuck. Now when they did terraform this planet, they did it extremely fast wanting to make sure that they could get in as soon as possible once the Xi’An threat was detected nearby. This lead to what some believe is a very pronounced cloud cover that exists over this planet, some think that maybe they terraformed it too fast and this was a side effect.
What it did do was it created a very, very scenic view which you’ll be able to see in the city of Sherman which was literally cut and built into the very top of Mount Olympus here on Cascom. Now they call Sherman the Island in the city… excuse me, they actually call it the ‘Island in the Sky’ because perched atop the mountain top like that with the cloud cover underneath, it looks as such. Now since it was a base for a lot of government and military stuff prior to the civilians moving in, Sherman is known for it being kind of a really pristine presentation of architecture. Hennowism which is a little more austere, rounded curves, looks a little bit like bunkers, that’s style was very prominent when the planet was first introduced or first terraformed. Then Monumentalism which was pushed by Corsen Messer V, who was a brutal version of the Messers who really pushed forward a very strong and authoritarian architecture style which can still be found on this planet. Once civilians and companies were able to move on in, the most famous company that did make the trek here was Kruger Intergalactic, seizing upon the great trade lanes, the solid infrastructure and the relative safety of the Castra system over Magnus where it had been based previously.
In 2833, most prominently there was the president of Cascom, a man by the name of Andre Novoselov who pushed really hard to try and give Castra a new image, try and rebrand it away from it merely being a trading hub and a military point of interest. So he started the ‘Island in the Sky’ campaign all around the ‘Verse to show the softer side of the system and to highlight Sherman as maybe a tourist destination or something that maybe could bring in different people and more of it’s own culture. While some of these strides were made, many more people did move in, nothing really seemed to stick to really distinguish Castra from the name that it was given when the military first decided to use it as a defensive position.
For all you haulers, traders looking to maybe get a foothold in the system, near the Xi’An border with good infrastructure, a large orbital platform out in its reaches and a very interesting B-type main sequence star, you should come check out Castra at some point. My name’s Adam Wieser, this has been another installment of Loremaker’s Guide to the Galaxy, thanks for watching.