In Tarus Space: Plight of Kolce, the plot takes place on… Kolce!
As the writer, here’s a little exploration to how Kolce came to be and a little bit of its backstory.
Let’s talk inspiration. Kolce is about conflict. It’s located a little bit around the outer edges of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. By being outside of the “core” of the major powers, Kolce is now somewhat on its own to fend off whatever space wolves lurk out in the galactic edges of the grim dark future of humanity. It’s like a little space sheep in the wild unknown with space wolves that can get it.
On the planet itself it’s also divided. Drawing inspiration from the Kingdom of Jerusalem (the one headed by King Baldwin IV), it’s a planet divided between two political factions. There’s a clash between two sets of cultures and two sets of religious factions. This backdrop is filled out with another inspiration; modern Afghanistan. Kolce, like Afghanistan, had a well-liked monarchy in the past and having been through some troubling times is looking for an answer. Queen Saruq represents that. She returns to a broken world full of strife, poverty and a host of other issues and her presence signals a return to better times. Yet, she can’t just do what she did in the past, Saruq has to consider the new universe she lives in and how times have changed in the intervening centuries since she last ruled the world.
On Kolce, there’s humans on one side and then the eeeevil xenos on the other. Except for the xenos that work with the humans. Those xenos are good. But then if they work with the humans and then later don’t work with the humans then they are bad, unless they work with them again. Then you have religion; one side is known as the Machinists and the other follow the Red Gods. But, all of this is one realm and it’s Queen Saruq’s realm.
And that’s where we get into the motivation behind designing the planet like this.
Queen Saruq has an endless list of headaches. Whether it’s the fact that Kolce is at the galactic edge and thus vulnerable to the many technobarbarian fleets that roam there or it’s an internal threat wielded by those of a different religion or ideology, she has her hands full. And what better way to help than Hussars? Decked out with the best equipment and not a clue about local politics. It’s endless opportunity for “interesting” situations.
So, what’s the result?
It uses names from Polish, Lithuanian and Ukrainian sources.
There’s eight or nine centuries of history to the place.
By the time the story begins, Queen Saruq’s return is a welcome symbol of respite and the possibility of returning to prosperity. Yet, at the same time, they know that a good crown isn’t enough to ward off the many perils that lurk within and without.