A few months ago I made a post lamenting that all Fallen Empires have the imperial authority and that the game should really benefit by giving each ethos a fallen empire and that fallen empires should be of different authorities. One comment on that post suggested that the reason Fallen Empires have exclusively the Imperial authority is that it makes sense for a stagnant empire to be authoritarian to the max.
With that said here's my revised suggestions for how to diversify the Fallen Empires.
- The Revolution (AKA
Storming the Bastille In SPAAAACE!!!):
There are several IRL instances of a nation state in decline or stagnation being reinvigorated following a political revolution of some kind. What if a Fallen Empire awakens as a result of its current political government being deposed by a different one with a different ideology i.e. a French Revolution in space.
Ex. 1 – A Fallen Empire with the Fanatic Xenophobe ethos could Awaken as a Fanatic Militarist or a Fanatic Authoritarian ethos (with the Dictatorship Authority) after being on the receiving end of a military coup for wasting time and not getting back out into the galaxy or maybe even an outright Fanatic Purifier if the cause of the Awakening was the conquest of another Fallen Empire.
Ex. 2 – A Fallen Empire of the Fanatic Materialist ethos Awakens as a Rogue Servitor (in their hypocritical hubris, they created an AI that took control over their society) or more disturbingly a Driven Assimilator with the technology of a Fallen Empire.
Ex. 3 – A Fanatic Xenophile might awaken as a response to an Endgame Crisis (other than the Contingency) but instead of becoming a Guardian of the Galaxy it becomes a Doctrinal Enforcer because the Crisis was interpreted by the populace of the Fallen Empire as the fulfillment of a religious end times prophecy and religious fanatics seized control over the imperial government and as an added bonus is actively aiding the Crisis faction (much like the Custodians if they succumb to the Ghost Signal and become Berserkers) or the inverse can happen, where a Fanatic Spiritualist empire awakens as a secular Fanatic Pacifist or Fanatic Egalitarian empire of the Democratic Authority similar to the Benevolent Interventionists.
Basically Fallen Empires unexpectedly awaken as a different ethos and authority than the one they had while they were sleeping and some like Fanatic Pacifist and Fanatic Egalitarian might just start to behave no differently than normal empires.
- The Civil War (AKA Mini-War in Heaven):
Basically as the above except the Revolution only half-succeeds, resulting in a civil war where the two sides drag nearby empires into the fray by promising them rewards for aiding them in securing their entire empire for their side. Combinations could include Fanatic Spiritualist Empire vs. Fanatic Egalitarian rebels, Fanatic Materialist Empire vs. Machine Uprising, Fanatic Xenophobe empire vs. Fanatic Purifier Rebels, etc.
- Hive Mind Fallen Empires (AKA: The Lazy Overmind):
Basically a biological equivalent of the Custodians. Something has caused this ancient Hive Mind's cognition to become disrupted, resulting in it existing in this half-dream state where it seems barely aware of anything going on in the galaxy. When it does awaken though, it basically behaves like the Zerg Swarm on steroids, and its goal becomes to conquer the galaxy and assimilate its population into itself via genetic engineering.
- Time Displaced Precursor Empire (AKA: The Interface Project):
The unexpected Awakened Empire / Mid-game Crisis. A super-advanced Precursor Empire (the Vultaum, the Cybrex, the First League, the Zroni etc) in the distant past has cracked the secret of time travel just in time to be destroyed by whatever it is that took them out, so in a last ditch effort to preserve their species they time displace a ringworld thousands (or millions) of years into the future into the game's present. In practical terms a random star system without planets suddenly becomes the capital of the new Awakened Empire which begins attacking its surroundings out of sheer survival instinct. Based on their ethos they might eventually calm down and become like just another awakened empire and may demand their homeworld back if it was discovered and occupied by someone else in the meanwhile.
- The Proxy (AKA: Cold War in Heaven):
Here the Fallen Empires don't actually show signs of having outwardly awoken but instead act through third parties, engaging in Proxy Wars through the current generation of empires. Basically a storyline chain runs through the whole game where you may find yourself contacted by a Fallen Empire early on to do something for them in exchange for resources or technology, and if you accept you slowly get dragged into a proxy conflict with another Fallen Empire and it's proxies which you can't back out of without angering the Fallen Empire. In such a scenario the Fallen Empires only awaken in the event of an Endgame crisis or if another Fallen Empire is conquered which demonstrates to them the failure of their behind the scenes approach to controlling the galaxy.
Source: Original link
© Post "Diversifying Fallen Empires" for game Stellaris.
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