Sirian Frequently Asked Questions

NOTE: Returning players may wish to skip to the bottom of the list, under the 'For returning players' heading, to get caught up quickly.

What flavor of sci-fi is Sirian?
Sirian aims for a "hard sci fi" flavor, so science fiction that's heavy on the science. For more details on exactly what a hard-science tone will feel like in play, refer to the hard sci fi page for more info.

To avoid confusion, a few notes on what Sirian is NOT:

  • Despite the presence of psionics and rare but available faster-than-light travel, Sirian is not intended as fantasy-flavored sci-fi (“elves in space”)
  • Sirian is not currently a deep space setting. Lack of easily-available FTL makes such ventures inherently dicey. While the setting may one day include a high-risk, deep space exploration component, most travel will be limited to the immediate solar system.
  • Religion and faith are not major themes within the setting. Both exist IC, but they aren’t a core underlying thematic element as with some science fiction.

What types of tech can I expect my character to encounter regularly?

Refer to the Sirian Everyday Technology page for an idea of what's available on a regular basis.

Are there aliens?

Yes, first contact has been made with a number of alien groups, many of them humanoid (the Taramarian, the Gargorians, the Elfin the Juren Empire) and one of them much less so (the Mutaren). Refer to the Sirian Species page for a comprehensive list.

Is there magic, psionics or mutant powers?

Yes, although they have become extremely dangerous and rare since the Inferno. Psionics and all similarly physics-defying powers are linked to a powerful infection that can lead to complete loss of free will and the endangerment of everyone nearby the user, so it's actively discouraged (at times violently). The condition is called The Crowned and requires Setting approval to play due to the extreme danger and chance to lose your character.

What are the Unlife

The Unlife are one of the most regular dangers on Sirian Planet Viral Zombies they are infected hosts and largely feral, though the addition of The Crowned to the equation has given them a strange hive intelligence that makes them that much more intimidating. For centuries, they have been the 'boogie men' of the setting and a regular danger, especially on the southern subcontinent.

What race/species options are playable?

A list of the currently playable species are available on the Sirian Species page. Every race and combination thereof is available among humanoids of any region. You are also welcome to submit a new species for play to the Setting Department following the guidelines for new species submissions.

Can my character have "weird" or "unique features", like purple eyes or pink hair?

Yes! Hair dye, Tattoos and eye color contacts are quite common in Sirian! The original colonists were a wide mix of people, so you have a lot of room to work with.

Are cybernetics available, and how do they work?

Cybernetics are available and affordable enough to be common, though not everyone who might be able to use cybernetic enhancements or replacements automatically chooses to do so. Most cybernetics are still immediately recognizable as synthetic (a robot arm looks robotic even at a distance), but some covers and clothing habits are deliberately designed to minimize the obviousness of cybernetic limbs or grafts.

Cybernetic replacements do not include any automatic enhancements in play, so a robotic arm punches just as hard and can take just as much damage as a flesh-and-bone arm. The distinction is purely an RP flavor distinction, although you can use it as a reason for skills which might improve your character's Mights to match (so a cybernetic eye might tie in to an awareness skill that enhances your sight).

Can I play a robot, nanobot swarm or body-less A.I.?

Sirian does have A.I. and sentient robots referred to as the metalborn. Playing an android or ConFab is no problem and doesn't require Setting approval. Playing a digital entity (a "digital metalborn") is very different and does require Setting approval given the unique challenges and considerations involved. Nanobot swarms are not currently playable because nanotech in the setting isn't currently that sophisticated.

Being metalborn offers no intrinsic numerical benefits - the Void of space is still destructive to machines and their functioning, data backups to avoid Character Death cost just as much for metalborn as they do for humans. The bodies of metalborn are not intrinsically stronger, their brains are not intrinsically better at math, etc. All of those elements may flavor your RP or tie in to skills which can help express them numerically, but they aren't awarded automatically when you choose to play a metalborn.

How do the holo-rooms work?

Holographic Rooms are physical rooms that support haptic feedback holographic environments. They feel and seem real within the limits of the room. Holographic rooms can generate almost any setting to a limited degree depending on the number of people in the room. Unless overridden by someone high up in command, they are protected by a safety system preventing any and all permanent physical harm. For training purposes, holographic rooms can simulate injuries with targeted nerve stimulation.

What kinds of entertainment are available?

Many of the things found in our modern day world are also found in Sirian - video games, movies, holoroom "cruises", sports (many of which now take advantage of microgravity), even books and comics (though they're almost entirely electronic)

Can I transfer experience between a Vaxian and Sirian character, or vice versa?

Yes - the XP was earned on your account, so if you want to use it between worlds, that's allowed. This is the case with site donations and experience as well.

Can my character or NPC cross between Vaxia and Sirian?

No - the two settings are completely distinct and separate. You are welcome to create a character in Sirian who resembles a Vaxian character in terms of personality, but they will not have knowledge of Vaxian people, events or culture.

Who organizes and oversees the Sirian setting?
Sirian is an open world, just like Vaxia, with open NPCs available for any A/SH’s use. The System, Setting and Social departments govern both settings equally.

--- For Returning Players ---
Returning Sirian players should refer to the items below for the most common questions on coming back, since you may have already noticed that quite a lot has changed.

What’s changed in the setting since I’ve been away?
If you’re a returning player, refer to the History of the Sirian Setting Relaunch page to get an idea of the many changes to the setting since you were last active. The new Sirian History page includes a timeline that captures many of the changes and recent events on a large scale to get you back up to speed quickly.

For more recent and local happenings, refer to:

How have Sirian skills changed? Where are my specializations?
For returning players, Sirian skills and items now operate like Vaxian skills and items - specializations have been removed. All skills now make use of specific Skill Aspects to balance abilities from skill to skill.

To represent the diversity of technology, technological skills now have 'tech languages' to demonstrate proficiency in that skill with technology from broadly different species or areas.

For other system changes that have impacted both settings, refer to the Recent System Changes page.