For canon information on Korlus, see here. This page is for CDN members' own additions.
Korlus is a highly-disupted world in the Terminus Systems, and is the only habitable planet in the Imir System, which contains the Mass Relay for the Eagle Nebula. As such, control over Korlus would allow a force to be able to more easily exert control over the Eagle Nebula Mass Relay by having a local base to return to and therefore, by default, control the nebula itself. This made the world a popular destination for mercenaries and would-be conquerors that wished to make the Eagle Nebula into their own personal domain, until the Reaper War, when a Cerberus incursion resulted in the accidental destruction of one of the comm buoys connecting Korlus to the rest of the galaxy, severing contact with the planet for the rest of the war and the start of the reconstruction process, until the discrepancy was finally noted in 2189, and rectified. However, the Korlus of today is now very different than the pre-war version, as the loss of communication, called the "Silencing" by the natives, coupled with the wartime mismanagement of the Korlus Administrative Board, have allowed for several factions to arise to claim the planet for themselves, creating a situation of anarchic warfare.
There are at least eight different factions that have expressed a claim to Korlus, either through declaration of intent, through legal means, through possession of territory on the world, or some combination of the others.
- Korlus Administrative Board
- Titan Corporation
- Coalition for Korlusi Independence
- Lystheni Confederation (see: Lystheni)
- Athamist Republic of Thalemea
- Blue Suns
- Gomorrian Dominion
- The Horde
The Salting of Choquo
The site of the former (disupted) capital city of Choquo, these ruined arcologies had multiple crude chemical weapons unleashed in an attempt to prevent anyone from rebuilding the only planetside hold the Korlus Administrative Board had on the world. Shortly after the Silencing, multiple competing factions laid siege to the city, which managed to hold off the invaders thanks to the fact that most of the city was underground. However, this proved to be the city's undoing, as one of the factions found a way to pump toxic chemicals past the air and water filtration systems, poisoning the entire city. This disabled the defenses, allowing for even more of the arcologies to be exposed to the onslaught, which resulted in more chemicals being dumped in. Now, the Salting is a toxic tomb, a parody of the world that it tried to repel and lord over.
The current capital city of Korlus and the headquarters of the Coalition for Korlusi Independence, Vargea is constructed inside and beneath an artificial mountain of hull plating, making a massive metal dome defending the town beneath it. Exposed slots in the curved superstructure allow for various craft to dock, while also letting various surface-to-orbit batteries to expose themselves. These can be pulled back into the fortress and protected within minutes. Inside is a makeshift arcology, protected from the harsh environment of Korlus by multiple layers of metal plating that are regularly replaced. Below the city are miles upon miles of tunnels connecting to smaller keeps surrounding the city's perimeter, as well as extensive bunker complexes deep beneath the city surface, including a powerful geothermal plant that keeps the lights on. The city is considered to be neutral ground on Korlus, though weapons are allowed on the streets.
The Sludge Sea
The only oceanic body on Korlus, the Sludge Sea covers the bottom portions of Korlus' largest oceanic basin, all other water having dried up or been used long ago. However, this ocean is not made of water, but of brackish barely-translucent slime that is colored a very nasty shade of dark-brown. At about 5% of Korlus' surface area, the Sludge Sea is the main dumping grounds of most of the trash on Korlus, as well as various toxic chemicals. Officially, the Lystheni Confederation controls the Sludge Sea, with various research stations established above the surface of the ooze on long, corrosion-resistant pylons made of a special alloy, each one designed to contain any sort of emergency. Unofficially, the Confederation also have many hidden outposts and settlements in the rest of the basin, claiming it as part of their territory.
The most intact of the series of spaceship-breaking yards scattered across Korlus' surface, Derelict Processing Complex Epsilon-Seven, or "Yard E-7" for short, is primarily composed of a large flat plain of mud filled with mobile scaffolding rigs of various types on special treads that let them not sink so easily into the muck down below, while also using armor to resist the wear and tear of the Korlusi environment around them. These rigs are set up around various ships that have been sent down to the surface of Korlus to be broken up. Connecting to the rigs are a series of highly flexible conveyor belts and pipelines to transport materials and omni-gel taken from the hulks to a ring of processing plants around the yard, which, in turn, transport the recycled gel and parts to shipping complexes across the planet. However, since the Silencing, many of the yards have been taken over by the various factions, but due to its relative remoteness near the South Pole, it has remained untouched, save for occupation by the Green Meanies during their stay on Korlus.
The Stack Hives
The main base of The Horde, the Stack Hives, formerly Derelict Processing Complex Kappa-Nine, are a marvel of vorcha engineering, a pair of words that most of the galaxy considers an oxymoron. The Stack Hives are a cluster of skyscraper-like hives formed from sections of deck and deck plating ripped systematically from the various ships in the surrounding landscape, stacked, as the name implies, on top of each other to form hive-like towers. Interconnecting these stacks are haphazardly-placed cables and walkways to allow for connections between the towers and to reinforce them all. The vorcha are constantly repairing and improving upon their hives, even occasionally starting work on a new stack when their population gets high enough. While located on a flat plain, the Stack Hives are surrounded by an outer perimeter of many hulks, most of which have had portions stripped to build and repair the stacks, though these old spaceships provide a series of easily-defendable chokepoints for any attacker to have to cross through to attack the Stack Hives.
When ships are sent to Korlus, they are sent on more or less ballistic trajectories, basic VIs guiding them in with what little fuel and Element Zero they have left. Most of the time, these great hulls land on the many plains or former seabeds the geologically-stagnant world of Korlus has, but, sometimes, they run into other features of the planet. One such instance is the Dreadnought Range, a mountain range littered with landed ships, their partially-buried hulks making it difficult to extract materials from. The largest of these ship-fused mountain ranges, the Dreadnought Range's ships can be as tall as some of the mountains they land upon, and, in some cases, they land in such a way that they lie along or drape the ridge of the range, creating a unique sight in the limited sunlight of the planet.
The Burning Lakes
One of the many sets of heavily-polluted lakes on Korlus, the Burning Lakes are significant because of the obvious fact that they are on fire. One lake was reportedly set on fire under mysterious circumstances, and it somehow spread to the other lakes around it. These lakes have been burning for about 2 centuries, and no one knows how much longer they are expected to burn. Sadly, any expedition to the Burning Lakes has to contend with both the massive plumes of soot and smoke from the lakes, but also the poor air quality, which is even worse than the normal Korlusi atmospheric standard.
Polar Quarantine Zone (PQZ)
A world of massive, alkaline lakes tainted by eezo runoff and acid rain, tundra plains shrouded in ash and steam, and thriving geothermal vents, the PQZ is generally avoided by most inhabitants of Korlus for a variety of reasons. First there is the practical: visibility is almost nil in places and the violent changes in weather patterns so common to the planet can scour the earth with walls of scalding steam and choking soot. Then there is the political; with many areas better suited to the extensive infrastructure required to support shipbreaking operations few, if any, hulks come down in the region and those that do are frequently accidents. And then there is the cultural, the myths and legends that inevitably grow around such places. That hulking biotechnohorrors stride the landscape endlessly. That the wasteland is haunted by things that were never born, monsters that never died. That it is the colder sort of hell.
With the crashing of Comet ZY-332-56 into the dead center of the PQZ and the ensuing clouds of dust and mist many are more than eager to give the place a wider berth. That sightings of the long-storied biotechnohorrors have become more common in the bars and dives of Korlus is only further reason to never venture near.
In addition to the high temperatures, there are many environmental dangers on Korlus, first and foremost being the very air. The amount of pollution in Korlus' atmosphere is noticeable upon first taking a breath of "fresh" air on the planet, and many have returned from the planet after only spending a few hours outside with coughs that last for days, if not weeks. Exposure to the planet's atmosphere for more than 24-48 hours at a time can result in numerous health issues, ranging from lung damage to the development of lung and/or mouth cancer.
Next is the weather, which ranges from acid rain, a common occurrence on Korlus and the reason for the rapid rusting of even the hardiest of hulk hulls, to sootstorms, nasty pitch-black sandstorm-like moving clouds that coat everything in sticky, nasty oil and soot, to what the locals refer to as "bioticanes", small storms created when static electrical buildup from atmospheric dust interacts with similar atmospheric buildups of leftover element zero, causing chaotic gravity inversions. While the bioticanes are incredibly small storm cells, their ability to destroy is why they have a similar moniker to the more powerful storms on other worlds.
The terrain of Korlus is also very dangerous, as many decaying ships have sunken into the relatively soft ground and formed pockets where a misstep can send someone plummeting into a buried hull, or an underground cave formation created from acidic rain washouts. The people of Korlus have used this feature to their advantage, sinking structures into the muck to use as protection from the weather, from small bases made from freighter containers to entire arcologies.
Finally, the wildlife of Korlus, of which there is very little in terms of diversity. Varren are the most common fauna, their omnivorous nature and relatively high intelligence allowing them to subsist on nearly anything, including each other. The other known animal that has thrived in Korlus' environment is the Muckraker, a genetically-engineered herd animal that consumes the polluted dirt and uses it for a biological furnace. The Muckrakers, able to asexually reproduce and grow to maturity within days, are the primary food source for pretty much any higher life-form on the planet, save for dextro-amino species. However, they are known to be aggressive when their young are threatened, and can use their spade-like snouts as weapons.
Any and all reports of hulking, albino monsters in the Polar Quarantine Zone are to be discounted as the rotgut dreams of known alcoholics.