Concept for a MegaCorp Fallen Empire – The Covetous Bargainers

stellaris 3 - Concept for a MegaCorp Fallen Empire - The Covetous Bargainers

While most societies seek to eliminate scarcity, this Fallen Empire has perfected it. They believe that to possess that which is rare and deny it to all others is the greatest accomplishment a sapient being can aspire to. Unlike the lesser races, however, they do not lust after credits or minerals. To them, such things are infinitely abundant, and therefore worthless. Instead, what they covet are the few things that are still scarce in a post-scarcity society – Things like the last living member of a dying race, or the creativity of a great artist, or the loyalty two people feel for each other, or above all else the ability to make a person do something that they do not want to do. As such, they take great pleasure in using their vast resources to persuade lesser races to sell these things to them.

Unlike other Fallen Empires, the Bargainers don't have a single Fanatical Ethic. In fact, they don't have any Ethics at all. (Insert "no ethical consumption" joke here.) By default, the Bargainers have exactly 0 opinion towards any non-Genocidal empire, regardless of their Ethics/Civics/Policies/etc.

Similar to the Ancient Caretakers, diplomacy with the Covetous Bargainers is unusual. The Bargainers have four different possible Attitudes towards other empires – Neutral, (Neutral opinion) Debtor, (Positive opinion) Creditor, (Negative opinion) or Unpaid Creditor. (Very negative opinion)

The Covetous Bargainers will often offer gifts to empires who they are Neutral towards, and offer gifts even more frequently to empires they have the "Debtor" attitude towards. However, unlike other Fallen Empires, accepting a gift from the Bargainers gives them a negative opinion penalty towards the target empire, and refusing a gift has no downsides.

If the Bargainers have the "Creditor" attitude towards another empire, they may make a request of them. Accepting the request improves the Bargainers' opinion of the other empire, possibly bringing them back to the Neutral or even Debtor attitude. If an empire refuses a request or fails a task, the Bargainers receive a -200 opinion penalty towards them and gain the "Unpaid Creditor" attitude. Basically, when you accept a gift from the Bargainers, they consider you to be in debt to them, and expect you to repay that debt in whatever manner they choose at whatever time they choose.

The Covetous Bargainers do not give gifts to or make requests of Gestalt Consciousnesses or Fanatic Purifiers.

If the Covetous Bargainers consider an empire to be in debt to them, they may ask the empire to do any of the following:

  • (Request) Have the leader of the empire publicly denounce their values and insult their own people for the amusement of the Bargainers, causing a temporary happiness decrease and Ethics Divergence increase throughout the empire.

  • (Request) Have the leader of the empire cruelly betray an old friend for the amusement of the Bargainers, causing the empire's highest-level leader to disappear and temporarily increasing leader recruitment cost.

  • (Request) Send the greatest living artists in the nation to live in the Fallen Empire, and ban their existing artwork from being displayed so that the Bargainers have total control over their accomplishments, causing the empire to lose five years worth of Unity.

  • (Request) Allow the Bargainers access to your people so they can make bargains with them on a personal level, causing a special Branch Office owned by the Bargainers to open on your capital. (Displacing any existing Branch Office in the process.) This Branch Office can construct special versions of ordinary Branch Office buildings, which each decrease planetary happiness by 10% on top of their other effects. 10-20 years after it is established, an angry mob of citizens will burn down all the Bargainer-owned businesses, destroying the Branch Office.

  • (Task) Complete a Special Project which sends every member of a certain species to the Bargainers upon completion, with the species chosen from those that are only found within your empire, are not your primary species, and have ten or less living pops. Purging all pops of the species except one and then sending it will fulfill the task, but if any members of the species leave your empire for any reason the task is failed – The Bargainers don't care what you do to the species they want as long as all of it eventually ends up under their control.

  • (Demand, only sent if the Bargainers have the "Unpaid Creditors" attitude) Allow the Bargainers to open the aforementioned happiness-decreasing Branch Offices on every single planet owned by the empire.

If their Demand is refused, the Bargainers can declare a Punishment war on the offending empire, executing their leader and forcing them to accept their Branch Offices anyway.

When the Covetous Bargainers Awaken, they become the Avaricious Collectors, who take a more proactive approach towards establishing ownership over everything in the galaxy. The unique vassal type of the Avaricious Collectors is the "Possession". Possessions are identical to ordinary vassals, except they cannot be integrated and are not forced to contribute any resources to their overlord. Instead, they are forced to accept the Collectors' Branch Offices on all of their planets permanently, and every 10 to 15 years the Collectors will make a request of their subject, regardless of their attitude towards them. Possessions are effectively forced to accept these requests, as refusing them immediately starts an independence war.

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