The call came down in the year 960 A.E. It came at the beginning of the month now known as Starmourn, in the time before everything changed.
Everyone felt it.
You felt it.
But only a select few among every sentient soul in the sector were charged to join in the defense of the Isochronon, the Empyreal whose long-dead corpse (or what passes for such immense beings as corpses) lay under seige in the Gnomon Institute, a facility safeguarded to house it.Let’s lay down some backstory, shall we?
For months, the galaxy as you knew it had been under the assault of strange, anomalous creatures. For months, semi-stable rifts had opened at weak points in the timestream, pulling hapless adventurers backwards and forwards in time.
Heroic researchers from each faction performed dangerous experiments, seeking to understand the ongoing instability within the sector. Laboratories were opened on Biloxan, on Delphi, on Tranquility Deepness. Sometimes, these experiments came with catastrophic results. Many lost their lives in the pursuit of knowledge. Some, like the Elgan scientist Flipilaria, lost years or seconds, trapped in a fog of time until the actions of her friends and compatriots restored her.
The ongoing catastrophe eventually reached such a state of destruction that the Gnomon Institute revealed itself, opening its doors to the galaxy for the first time in millenia. Chronomaster Javick Amadi, head of the Institute, explained that the anomalies were a defense mechanism of the Isochronon, which was under a subtle attack by the Ishvana – an attack that became more violent and desperate as the weeks wore on.
Eventually, the Ishvana’s methods shifted from exploratory and subtle to a full-fledged assault. The halls and chambers of The Gnomon Institute were swarmed with an army of invaders. Rylek Ironbound, Kreelein, Lanaya, Lupisentia Ironbound, Naldan T’aeir, Rhujj Redstrike, Vega T’rvati, Hope, Jaidyn Nova, Flipilaria, Zarrach Merzavetz, and many more were instrumental in the ongoing defense of the Institute, keeping its chambers and hallways clear enough for the researchers to erect forcefields, for reinforcements to be assembled and deployed.
For a short time, it seemed like perhaps that was all that would happen. A tentative, fragile peace lasted, even if the air of tension and expectation was palpable. Silence reigned in the halls of the Institute.
It didn’t last.
A great stillness and tension descended upon the galaxy. A broad-band mindsim broadcast went out on all frequencies – the Gnomon Institute reported a galacticlevel threat. The Chamber of the Isochronon, so far unmolested by the Ishvana’s assault, had been breached at last.
Wherever they were, whatever they were doing at the time, a host of temporal defenders were pulled through time rifts into the very heart of the Gnomon Institute. Among these brave souls were Zarrach Merzavetch, Akiko, Clover Moonchild, Hope, Digit, Azlyn, Flipilaria, Holgorath Ironbound, Lupisentia Ironbound, Rylek Ironbound, Isabella, Jaidyn Nova, Kass Stareater, Lanaya, Milo Moonchild, Naldan T’aeir , Quark, Steve Sol’lun, Van T’rath, and Lord Commander Vega T’rvati. But time is a funny thing. Perhaps you were there. Or perhaps you will be, in your future.
The chamber was an alien place. During debriefing and interviews after the fact,some described it as similar to standing in a barren wasteland, a landscape made of flesh. The only conclusion that could have possibly been drawn was that herewas the remains of the Isochronon, large enough to be a small continent in its own right. Many recounted the scent of lost things, and the strange, unnatural stillness. A stillness that lasted until the eruption of the Ishvana’s final, greatest attack.
Erupting from the landscape was a monster nearly as large as the Isochronon itself, but of a completely different make – oily and black with the evil sheen of the Ishvana’s darkest servants. Immense limbs thrust up through the ground, powered by something vast and unseen. Defense against this attack required coordination, direction, but this was difficult to achieve when time itself was fracturing, reflecting infinite versions of reality in a starry void. Several defenders told commsphere reporters that they heard a great voice calling for aid, that a sense of something incomprehensibly ancient was present in that place.
In every direction, purple light fractured and insubstantial anomalies poured forth, mobbing the Ishvana’s attackers in several billion separate realities at once. The attack went on for an eternity – or for hours – or for just a few seconds – but eventually, each immense portion of the Ishvana’s soldiers had been defeated, and a glow of life suffused the dead landscape on which they fought. All heard the rumble of the Isochronon’s voice, assuring the mortals that it had been defended – that it would maintain temporal continuity in whatever version of reality it still existed in.
After the defenders exited from the greatly changed Chamber, Chronomaster Javick Amadi approached the group. Already, he said, the Institute was reporting that the speed of the Synchronization had increased exponentially. The shape of reality had shifted slightly – the names of months and weekdays had changed, and even the memory of what they used to be called were slipping from the minds of most people who hadn’t been present at the heart of eternity.
No longer would the Synchronization occur every month, but every four days instead, evidence of the Isochronon’s watchfulness. Javick requested that the new Chronomasters continue to protect the Institute and the Isochronon from any continued assault by the Ishvana – for its defense was more critical than ever.
The full extent of the changes wrought by the Isochronon’s waking will take time to fully comprehend. After centuries of service, Javick Amadi left the defense of the Institute in the hands of the warriors who had protected it so well, and departed for planets unknown.
The Event Horizon, a research vessel owned by the Ironbound dynasty, still exists at the edge of the sector to this day, captured in an eternal state of unnatural temporal flux.
The doors of the Gnomon Institute remain open.
Exciting news travels swiftly through Starmourn Sector – the planet Rama, in the Atheni system, long since closed to outsiders, appears to be open to traffic for the first time in what historians say is centuries. Housing the last remnants of the Rek race, the ancient city of Hox has finally been revealed, along with a strange and vast Institute located on what the locals call ‘Gnomon Island’.
In other news, the time traveler and research scientist Flipilaria, thought by many to be lost in the wreck of the Event Horizon, has somehow reappeared. Rumor has it that her return is related to the planet Rama opening its doors to travelers once more, though it is unclear why, exactly, this would be.
The leaders of the various temporal research initiatives that have been started around the sector might know more…
On the 20th of Milli, in the year 960 A.E., an experimental spacecraft was launched from Omni Station, bound for the far borders of the sector. Fitted with an experimental skipdrive, modified to use the temporal crystals that have become ubiquitous throughout the sector, the ship was populated with a crew of scientists and explorers, and piloted by Holgorath Ironbound.
In addition to the captain, the Event Horizon’s crew consisted of Erni and Lynair Ironbound, Jaidyn Nova, Lanaya, Isabella, Rogzel, Shardclaw Dragonlord, Akiko, Ordarris, Lain T’rath, Soza Phis’tor, Naldan T’aeir, Steve Sol’lun, and even the Lord Commander of the Song Dominion, Vega T’rvati. Of course, the entire reason for the voyage existing in the first place is all thanks to Fl..i//[ERROR: FILE NOT FOUND]p –//#%%%- ia.
The Event Horizon, as it was called, was donated by the Ironbound dynasty to Fl..i//[ERROR: FILE NOT FOUND]p –//#%%%- ia – an unknown explorer, who piloted the ship to RS-7749, just inside the border of the Ibyssian Brotherhood region of space.
While locked in broad orbit around an unpopulated star, experiments were conducted upon the Event Horizon that researchers are still attempting to understand. What is clear to everyone is that the entire galaxy felt reality and time go into temporary flux, locking everyone into a frozen state for a short period.
Reports are conflicting as to what actually happened to The Event Horizon. Those on board the vessel state that the ship was destroyed, that it wasn’t destroyed, that it aged before their eyes.
Rescue of those stranded on The Event Horizon was only possible after an experimental maneuver with the skipdrive of Fl..i//[ERROR: FILE NOT FOUND]p –//#*%%%- – after which the wreck and everyone on it once again became accessible to the commsphere. Fortunately, Erni Ironbound was able to rescue the stranded crew in his ship, the Alternating Current.
Long range scanners confirm that the wreck of the Event Horizon remains in orbit in RS-7749, ruined beyond any hope of salvage, the dangerous, anomalous lifeforms within sustained by a strange energy.
Breaking news from the Starmourn News Network! Over the past few weeks, citizens of the sector have come under assault by bizarre behaviors in the fabric of space and time. Reports are coming in from every faction about unplanned trips to what seems to be the past. People have claimed to see Oldtown before it was old, the planet Song before it was irradiated, and the subnet before it was buried. There have been repeated instances of monstrous anomalies springing up in random locations, assaulting unsuspecting citizens with horrific visions of the past and future.
Strangest of all, perhaps, are the unnatural prisms that seem to be linked to these temporal incidents and anomaly attacks. Efforts by scientists and researchers to understand these incomprehensible, physics-defying objects have led to nothing but destruction, misery, and a great deal of death. A representative from H.E.T.E. claimed that ‘business had been very good lately’ – a statement for which the cloning monopoly later apologized.
What does it all mean? Is there a purpose to these seemingly random, unconnected events? Can anything good ever come from meddling with the fabric of space time? Does the fate of the universe hang in the balance, or is a hungry mad scientist just trying to find the long-lost original recipe for Scatterhome Gumbo?
One thing is sure, the weeks to follow will almost certainly shed some light on what’s going on. You wouldn’t want to miss it, would you? Log in today!
Want to learn more about what all the fuss is about? Check out our discord!
Have you ever wanted to work on a professional MUD?
Iron Realms Entertainment is looking to hire a new part-time coder for Starmourn. In this position, you would be working with Eukelade (Laura Lindborg), the lead Producer for Starmourn. Even though your primary job revolves around code, you would be part of the visible face of the MUD to the players. Applicants need to enjoy communicating with players in addition to being a skilled programmer.
While we don’t expect you to have all the following skills, the ideal candidate for Starmourn would:
- Be a coder. You don’t need to be a Google level engineer, but you do need to be good at programming.
- Be currently working or running an active MUD. If you don’t work on a MUD, you’ll definitely need to be someone who loves to play them. If you stopped playing or working on them years ago, we’re not interested. We prefer to have someone with significant MUD experience and being part of a team, whether commercial or non-commercial.
- Be a fan of MUDs. That doesn’t mean you played them for 2 months six years ago.
- Be a creative, disciplined, and logical thinker. Even as a coder, you will be part of the Starmourn development team. You must be able to code game design systems and also assist in creating logical systems. You need to be able to see the big picture as you add these features to a game with hundreds of intertwined skills.
- Be a people person. Our players are very passionate about their games. You must be able to communicate with them in a calm, collected manner when they are upset about the latest nerf to their favorite class or system.
- Be self-motivated. You’ll be working from home. You must be able to focus and get things done in that environment. We don’t care where you live and we won’t be telling you what hours to work. We have a couple of weekly meetings that you are required to attend with set times. Outside of that, you can plan when to meet with the producer and what times you would like to work.
- Be familiar with Starmourn or even other IRE MUDs. This would be great, and it will make getting into the code much faster. It is much easier to know what parts of the game need balance if you’re familiar with all of the intricacies.
This is a part-time position and compensation is based on the candidate and their qualifications. There are opportunities for raises and future full time employment. Employees will receive a quarterly bonus based the performance of the game. Just to reiterate, this is a part-time position and the pay will reflect that.
If you think you might be able a good candidate please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “Starmourn Coder”.
For several years, our enthusiastic playerbase has been discussing Starmourn in an unofficial, fan-made Discord channel. In fact, the community has grown to such a great size, and has such a great moderating team, we’ve decided to take steps to improve the Discord experience and integrate it more fully with our game. Starting today, the Unofficial Starmourn Discord will now be known as the Official Starmourn Discord!
Here’s a few questions you probably have, and, hopefully, answers to these
Q: What will this change for people who are already active participants in this online community?
A: The biggest change is the presence of the #newbie channel, which is a mirror of the newbie channel in game. That means people on the discord can talk to people currently in the game, and vice versa. We hope this will increase the pool of available people new players have to talk to. Note that #newbie will have some mild slowmode features enabled to prevent spam, and we expect all chatter taking place on it to be discussions and answered questions that serve to grow and support a new player’s journey.
Q: Ok, anything else?
A: We’ve integrated the in-game Conflict and Deathsight channels to display on our Discord. Other things that have changed are the links to the Discord channel on our website, Facebook, and forums. We’ve also brought Bandus, our hardworking Discord moderator, into the ranks of the Starmourn “Storytellers” (though he’ll continue to just do what he does best and run our Discord, unless he wants to do more!)
Q: Does this mean I can file issues and bugs in the Discord?
A: Nope! Issues, bugs, and other things will continue to be filed through all the regular in game channels. Talking on Discord about changes you’d like to see is also not guaranteed to get a response from the development team – use the IDEA command, or start a new thread on the forums, for a better chance of a discussion that sticks.
Q: Will the Starmourn staff be actively moderating the Discord?
A: Because of the ever-scrolling nature of the Discord, it’s impossible to enforce the rules from our forums and game there. We are going to continue to enforce good behavior in both areas with seperate moderation strategies, but because it’s currently impossible to link game accounts and discord accounts with any consistent accuracy, consequences for poor Discord behavior will be limited to Discord, and consequences for poor game behavior will be limited to the game.
Q: Will the regular community question and answer sessions continue?
A: Yes!! We love those!
We want to thank Bandus for all his hard work over the years. Without his efforts (and the supplemental efforts of player moderators like RocketCat, Chimera, and Ordarris), we wouldn’t have been able to do this. So thank you, Bandus, and welcome to the official team!
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