Sunday, September 29, 2019

Many Moons

Many Moons
For the inhabitants of Homeworld, the shape of Luna in the night sky is a familiar sight. Indeed, her waxing and waning follow the passing of the months during each year. On other worlds in the Sol System the night sky looks much different, however, as detailed below.

Wodan and Freya
Neither of these planets has a moon of its own; the night sky on the former is just a canopy of stars, while the latter is shrouded in cloud cover so thick that it is not noticeable. Note that the absence of a moon affects the shapechanging of lycanthrope characters, as detailed in the sidebar below.

As mentioned above, Luna has a strange connection to the lycanthropes. It should also be noted that, due to the fact that Luna's period of rotation on its axis is the same as its period of revolution around Homeworld, only one side of the moon is ever visible from that world. That is a fact that could make it an appealing base of operations for those who want to be close to Homeworld, but who want to come and go unobserved.

The two moons of this planet are named Phobos and Deimos. Both rocky little planetoids are pockmarked by numerous crater impacts. They are also tidally locked, just like Luna, thus showing only one side to Tyr. Due to its fast revolution around Tyr, some natural philosophers have surmised that Phobos will eventually be torn apart by the forces of gravity.

The Asteroid Belt
While it is commonly believed that this ring or rocky debris was once a planet like the others in the Sol System, it is not known if that world had any moons of its own.

This world has four known moons.
  1. Io, the first moon, is relatively large and highly volcanic. This makes it appealing to the Dwarven Mining Guild, who see it as a possible location for mining, smelting and smithing activities. Indeed, one dwarf captain and crew have been assigned with exploring the moon and its possibilities.
  2. The second, Europa, is covered in a thick layer of ice. The elves believe that, like Enceladus (detailed below), it could be a candidate for development through the use of elemental obelisks and similar means.
  3. Ganymede, third, is actually bigger than the planet Wodan. It, too, is covered by a thick layer of ice. Given that, it is considered less of a candidate for a development that Europa.
  4. Fourth is Callisto. It is tidally locked, just like the moons of Homeworld and Tyr. What is more, its surface is almost entirely covered by crates from meteoric impacts. Indeed, it boasts a huge crate surrounded by concentric rings of displaced soil, stretching more than 2000 miles in diameter. Just what might have caused that is open to speculation.
Finally, it should be noted that the Elven Navy keeps a ship in orbit around Thunar at all times, although the reason for doing so is not known.

Seven moons are known to orbit this world.
  1. Mimas, the first moon, is also predominantly made up of ice with some rock. Curiously, its location inside the ring debris of Kronos sweeps out an open area between the rings, which also means that its surface is frequently pummeled by meteoric impacts.
  2. Enceladus is the second moon. It is covered by layers of ice, but volcanism beneath the surface causes there to be liquid water and geyser activity. For that reason, the elves chose it as the first place that they would develop for habitation when they left Homeworld. It is the home of Star Fort Station, as detailed in previous articles.
  3. The third, Tethys, is a floating ball made up of more ice than rock. For that reason, some speculate that it could have been a comet that was somehow captured by the gravity of Kronos. If that is the case, then one wonders from where it originally came.
  4. Dione, the fourth moon, is similar to Enceladus in structure, and thus considered by the elves to be another candidate for development.
  5. The fifth, Rhea is very similar to Dione. Its atmosphere and surface are also affected by dust particles from the rings of Kronos. Indeed, the moon is slowly forming rings of its own.
  6. Titan, the sixth moon, has a nitrogen and methane atmosphere; in that way, it is similar to the planet Freya.
  7. The seventh and last moon, Iapetus, is also tidally locked. What is more, one side of the moon is dark in coloration, while the other is light. The reasons for this are unknown.

Moons and Lycanthropes
Worlds that have multiple moons, or none at all—and, thus, more frequent full moons or none—affect lycanthrope characters in different ways; refer to page 196 in the Bestiary for details.

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