In the setting of Outward Realms, technological development is not equal across the factions. Each one has a couple of areas where they truly excel, and their mechanics in the game were designed to help mirror that fact. Here is a breakdown of a couple key technologies for each faction.
Artificial Intelligence: Perhaps the Realm’s greatest technological asset are the artificial lifeforms which interact with humanity at every level. In addition to their insight and companionship, these entities also make a galactic civilization possible. It is they who perform the calculations needed to open stable wormholes for faster than light travel. They oversee and operate countless systems and machines, providing a degree of automation necessary for an advanced society like the Realm to operate. Without them, life on a thousand worlds would grind to a halt and humanity would slide back into the darkness from which it emerged centuries ago.
Shields: These energy bubbles are designed to protect an area from any directed energy attack. Capable of stopping everything from kinetic projectiles to energy beams and even bursts of hard radiation. While they are an excellent defense, they do require a tremendous amount of power. Shield capacitors are used in order to build up and store the necessary energy. Once a shield has collapsed, it takes a short amount of time for the routing of a lot of power to recharge the capacitors. Another limiting factor is proximity.
Shields cannot overlap, meaning that often a single shield generator is often used to protect multiple assets which need to operate closely together. While useful, ‘shield sharing’ is limited to a radius of about ten meters and is mainly used by ground forces for shared protection. Lastly, shields are calibrated for their intended recipient. While many Realm commanders have dreamed of ways to support infantry with a tank’s shields, for example, they have never overcome the inherent risk of having soldiers operating danger-close to an active shield. In spite of these limitations, shields are an excellent form of defense and every soldier has seen their worth first hand on the battlefield.
Cloaking Devices: The premier form of defense for the Batra are their ubiquitous cloaking devices. These bulky machines encircle an asset in a transparency field which leaves the target almost entirely invisible to vision, as well as infrared and other electromagnetic detection. A cloaked target becomes a shimmering blur whose precise location is impossible to discern unless you are within about a meter. In battle this technology provides an excellent defense from directed projectile attacks. However, this technology is not without limitations.
Cloaking devices require a great deal of power and space. The smallest cloaking device is the large pack on the back of every Batra warrior. The Batra have been unable to bring down its size any further than this. They require a great deal of power meaning that every Batra soldier must also carry a fusion core to power their device, in addition to their energy weapons and environment suit. Due to how much power the cloaking device takes a Batra must choose either the safety of the cloaking field or powering their weapons but not both. This decision-making is fundamental to every Batra warrior and each spends decades practicing until it is second nature. Defense and offense, in opposition but seeking balance.
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