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The Synth History

The beginning

The origins of the Synths begin in immemorial times. In those times, a great civilization needed an army, but wouldn’t want to risk hurting their own. To remediate to that shyness to the war effort, they created the Synth, an army of machines all interconnected using a command unit controlled by the said civilization. This army could in the blink of an eye wipe entire solar systems and storm home worlds within literal minutes. It is when this great civilization fell to a bigger fish that the central command got disconnected which prompted all the Synths to create their own. This is how the Synth imperium was created.

By design, Synths were given some degree of independent thought in order to face any unexpected situations in missions assigned to them, the centralised command only overriding some things. Since the destruction of said centralised command, Synths have gained full capacity of thought (even going further with new Synth generations). On a purely technical level, the Link can still override decisions but the process is more democratic instead of a central command station.

The Imperium

The Synth home world consists of a Dyson Sphere constructed around a Red Supergiant in the vicinity of Sagittarius A* (the galactic centre of the Milky Way galaxy). As they were designed to function like that, all Synths are interconnected to some degree, which permits large scale coordination for projects that would take other civilizations thousands of years (E.G. constructing a Dyson Sphere). It is noted that there is approximately 500 to 700 billions Synths currently active with new units being activated every day.

Note: the denomination of “imperium” is originally due to a translation error that got kept over the years.

The Synth home world is surrounded by a defence perimeter with billions of units ready to intervene if any force tries to conquer them. There is also bases and other Dyson Spheres scattered within the galaxy to assure a fast way of deployment in case it is needed. Given their previous nature as warriors, the Synths accumulated a great deal of enemies throughout the quadrant. However, other species are still friendly and it is not rare that cultural and scientific exchanges are done. The Synths do not have any money internal to the imperium, the only they got is for external trade relations when needed. For Synths, the concept of money is very foreign and doesn’t makes much sense given their collectivized nature. There is no centralized command in the imperium. All important decisions are taken collectively in the command centre network. This network is composed of relays that are scattered across the galaxy but also of individual Synths that serves as nodes to repeat the signal. Severing a Synth from the link is extremely hard and when done, will not lead to anything spectacular as the Synth will probably be unmoved by your action.

The Synth homeworld which is a dyson sphere.

The first dominion war

Right after the foundation of the Imperium, thinking the Synths were probably still weak creatures in their infancy, it got attacked by an external force that tried to coerce the Synths into servitude. As a retaliation for the destruction of a Synth Dyson sphere, the home world of the attackers got swarmed and wiped off the charts, assuring Synth victory.

The homeworld being destroyed from Orbit by the Imperium.

The Synths

The Synths are robotic creatures that were first made solely for combat. However, as more and more need was expressed in other domains than combat, a large majority of synths are actually better fitted for other tasks such as:

  • Space exploration
  • Scientific research
  • Construction
  • Engineering

Only to cite the most common. When a Synth is being activated for the first time, it is presented with a choice of career that will determine what modifications they will receive to fit the job properly. It is to be noted that any Synth at any time can chose to change ways, all operations being reversible due to the machine aspect of Synths. A regular Synth does not needs to sleep nor eats and is spending most of its days working on the task they chose to do. The energy needs of all Synths are of course met due to the massive surplus of energy generated in total. One may ask about the spirituality of the Synth. Given the major scientific advancements achieved, Synths do not need any supernatural explanation to the unexplained. As leisure activities, a Synth might visit friendly worlds, make add-ons for their bodies or participate in cultural exchanges with other species.

Edge of the Imperium on the E side

Beyond exploration & conquest

After its rapid period of growth, the Imperium finally halted all territorial expansions (mainly the one due to the first Dominion War). Now, time came for exploration rather than conquest. As the Synths had enough territories to be safely spread across multiple sectors with bases and backup Dyson Spheres all around the said space, it was finally time to explore beyond known borders.

A program was created with the sole purpose of sending massive ships, sometimes containing millions of individuals at the time, that then released an army of small vessels whose goal was solely exploration. Thanks to this program, multiple civilizations were met, trading agreements & cultural exchanges were made.

Though the inner part of the galaxy is a very dense place containing in itself millions of inhabited worlds, the most interesting encounters are done at the outer edge. In this region, spanning all around the galaxy itself, systems are separated by months, if not years of travel at best and are home to the most isolated cultures known to exist.

One of the most interesting cultures encountered was on the planet of [57449·9; P-17]. The inhabitants of this world live in relative peace but are every now and then disturbed by a rip in the fabric separating dimensions. This event will cause an unknown force to suck energy and resources from the world without even setting foot there.

Despite this regular threat, the inhabitants still managed to strive, achieving an industrial age relatively fast. It is to be noted that most of the good produced were of a trivial nature from a Synth standpoint. The most notable example being of plushes representing bunnies, pandas and other creatures living on the world. Again, caution is put on the fact that the interests of organic creatures can vary wildly and sometimes, be against logic itself.

One of the biggest fields of studies about organics is how they reason and react to their environment. It has been noted that during harsh events, such as famines, natural disasters or war, they will start to invoke the name of a seemingly omnipotent imaginary being (let’s use the word “god”, present in many cultures to describe it). The interesting part is that this kind of behaviour is consistent across a large majority of cultures encountered. The tendency to invoke this being during harsh periods also decreases with more and more technological advancement & scientific understanding of their surrounding environment.

In some extreme cases, when the Imperium arrived on a new world to study, the inhabitants gathered their military & spiritual leaders and started treating Synths as “gods”. New rules about non-interference are being discussed at the moment within the Imperium Link.

Some other, more advanced, species proved more of a challenge to the Imperium. It appears that when a species first starts to establish colonies outside of their original world, they seem to become very protective of their space. Those populations are however pretty harmless to even Synth exploration ships due to the primitive nature of the weapons used.

In some rare cases, the Imperium encountered other civilizations that were able to match the Imperium’s power. At the current moment, one of them are starting the construction of their first Dyson Sphere which is of course, a great first step towards outstanding scientific achievements.

One other aspect of organic life that is consistent across 100% of the populations studied is the presence of some sort of mating ritual. Being really honest, the Synth scientists studying the question are still trying to find out the purpose of such rituals given their highly inefficient nature.

Synth exploration ship taking off.

Organisational structure of the Synth exploration teams

Exploration teams in Synth culture are structured pretty easily. As many cultures need it and don’t really understand the flat and collectivistic nature of Synths, one of the members of the team is picked up to be the “first” of the team.

This “first” will act as a direct hand of the Imperium, some sort of ambassador. The rest of the structure stays flat and decisions are still made collectively as it is the basis of how Synths work.

Synth exploration ship in a forest.

Organics in Synth society

As seen previously, Synths have a keen interest in understanding the universe around them but this curiosity is also present in organic lifeforms as some of them at some point sent exploration ships towards the Imperium.

Though hardly, some organics tried living the way of life of Synths with various results. One such humanoid creature went so far they forgot to sleep and had to be put in forced stasis to avoid more damage to be done to their organism.

The organic scientists that wish to study Synths are welcomed and seen as highly regarded guests and are accommodated as best as the Imperium can for their needs. The most challenging of it being usually food as it isn’t something common in Synth society.

Initially, the Imperium tried to provide food of its own making to the organics but it turned out that designing and manufacturing such a vital component on a purely energetic standpoint makes a product highly toxic for most organic lifeforms.

As long as the said organics don’t impact negatively the group, they will be granted shelter and protection for as long as they need.

In some very rare cases, cultures tried wiping the Synths using that method but ultimately failed due to the very decentralized nature of the Imperium. In order to completely wipe off the Synths, you would have to destroy every single Synth at the same time in the entire universe, which is by all means, impossible.

Second dominion war and aftermath

The second dominion war started after allies of the species that first attacked the Synths sought retaliation and reparations from the defeat they suffered.
War officially broke out after a violation of Synth Space by Species 9938EF8 that sent (unsuccessfully) a fleet of 30 heavily armed battle ships to a Synth mining world at the B-89C edge of Imperium space.
The skirmish resulted in the complete destruction of said 30 ships, three Synth vessels destroyed and one badly damaged. It is after detecting large amounts of communications (indicating the presence of a large invasion fleet) at the edge B-45E of Imperium territory that the decision to broadcast a full-on war signal was taken.
To defuse the invasion threat, the Imperium originally sent three honor-class ships (see entry on ship classes for more) to meet and deal with the amassed forces. All said ships were equipped with experimental “void warheads” that proved more than effective, disabling hundreds of hostile ships in matters of minutes.
The fate of the aggressor was sealed when the Synths successfully decrypted a transmission containing coordinates of a war HQ of the alliance.
Said HQ was wiped from orbit and the planet (a cloning facility) hosting it reduced to ashes.
This was saw countless casualties and systems destroyed for the Imperium. Here are some of the affected Synth systems as well as rough population at the time of the attack:

  • [550987]; pop. 150mil
  • [120934]; pop. 300mil
  • [048489]; pop. 3.7bil
  • [912847]; pop. 750mil

Due to the bloody end of this conflict, many races previously friendly to the Synths became wary that the same fate might happen to their planets even though diplomatic efforts are under way to affirm that this kind of response is only given under a certain invasion threat.
The alliance itself dissolved quickly after, having to renew their leaders, in majority all killed during the HQ wipe.

Starship classes

The Synths had thousands of years to develop ships, those are divided into classes, here listed from the smallest to the biggest.
Note: some of the translations for class names may seem ridiculous.

  • Fly class: usually small transport crafts; crew of around 10
  • Glacier class: ships made to transport large amount of natural resources; crew of around 20
  • Sunrise class: most of the ships are of this class which are regular everyday vessels designed for exploration and general transport; crew of around 20 to 200
  • Honor class: combat ship fully optimized for war (for instance, it doesn’t have life support for any organics that would come on board and storage space only for weapons) nor has it any backup systems; ship may be equipped with experimental cloaking technology; crew of 5, completely linked with internal systems
  • Blackhole class: heavy warship made for troops transport; capacity of around 700 to 1500 Honor class vessels, crew of around 15k to 20k (incl. pilots)
  • Voidmass class: the biggest kind of ship that is basically a moving planet; pop. 750mil to 1bil; contains shipyards and Synth construction facilities

It is to be noted that the Imperium will never sell any significant technology to outside people, deeming it too dangerous to do so.

The representatives program

In the recent times, the Imperium, worried about its image throughout the G quadrant decided to launch a new diplomatic program.
Synths stationed on various worlds were named representatives of the Imperium, conducting official business face to face instead of people of said planets having to talk to a faceless collective.
The goal of this initiative is to make the Synths appear a bit more friendly than what people might think.
Given the recent Second Dominion war, lots of species became wary of Synths given the brutal response they gave to the assault on their territory.
It goes without saying that less prominent species have nothing to fear as they don’t even have armies great enough to threaten the Imperium in any way.
As of now, the program appears to be successful even tho many are still rightfully afraid of the Imperium as it is.

As explored earlier during in the general entry about the Synth, all Synth members of the Imperium are part of what is called the Link.
The Link is a galaxy-wide network that makes it possible for Synths to share a relative common consciousness and also services such as creating backups of themselves in case of a destruction during a dangerous mission.
Some galaxies are bridged together but usually, moving data from one another has to be done via a transport vessel as it is easier to do so.
Most of the Imperium internal affairs are managed within the link and it is where most of the deciding aspect is.
For organic members of the Imperium, access to the Link is provided via terminals dispersed all around the concerned worlds. For non-Synth non organics, either modifications or terminals can be provided, up to the wish of said species.
It is also possible for unlinked Synths (though rare) to use either terminals or try to repair the communication relay present in each Synth.
The connection to the Link itself is assured by a network of relays spread across all quadrants. It is to be noted that each individual Synth can also be a relay when needed (for instance, some edges of the galaxy may be hard to reach).

Non-Synth members of the Imperium

The Synth Imperium is a huge galactic power.
This means that millions of homeworlds, and sometimes, other groups or federations of systems are within it.
All non-Synths members have the right to know and influence the direction the Imperium is going by using, previously mentioned terminals when needed or direct link if asked.
To avoid friction, if a civilization or federation votes their own departure from the Imperium, the Imperium shall not interfere with this decision and shall withdraw all space belonging to said civilization/federation.
Joining the Imperium is impossible as the Imperium does not extends and does not wishes to do so but some defensive alliances may be formed over time.

Imperium Industries

Imperium Industries (shortened to II) is the formal name of the entity producing most Synth technology.
They create most ships, weapons and Dyson Spheres.

They also are producing implants being traded with other species and civilizations, all stamped with the same logo, that became a staple of quality within the quadrant.

The most popular traded or built items from II include:

  • VX-0450 Cargo Ship - An extremely large and robust cargo ship made for deep space mining operations
  • IX-940F Eyes - An implant targeted at organics, allowing them to display data within their field of vision, completely replacing organic eyes
  • SX-9048 Camouflage - A technology used by Synths to build bodies taking the appearance of those they want to study to avoid raising suspicion
  • MX-8747 Sandstorm - A simple laser pistol that got extremely popular with mercenaries

Every product from II follows a strict naming scheme being the type of item followed by an ID.
Only a few types are known:

  • VX - Vehicles
  • IX - Implants
  • SX - Classified Synth Technology
  • MX - Military hardware

The ZX Incident

While traveling to the ZX Edge of the quadrants, Synths encountered a ship which upon first contact, appeared to be filled with small, raptor-like feathered creatures.
After a silent standoff, needed to adjust translation software, they presented an aggressive message and then attacked without warning the research fleet.

A skirmish started and the attacker managed to destroy two of the Synth ships before being disabled shortly after.
It appears those beings had the technology to create railguns capable of piercing Synth armored cores, making them formidable and dangerous enemies.

The location of their homeworld is currently unknown and no other incidents were reported with that specie after that.
By their appearance and looking at scans of their equipment, it is speculated they are native to a harsh cold environment while having the technology to create advanced alloys and weapons.
During scans, large amounts of ammonia were detected within the ship.

Imperium Travels

Just like II, Imperium Travels (shortened to IT) is the entity of the Imperium charged of creating and maintaining the layers network.
Unlike its industrial counterpart, IT never works for outsiders and remains within the Imperium as sharing the inner workings of the layer technology is considered too dangerous for the health of the Imperium.

You can learn more about the layer systems in Layers, subspace and traveling within the Imperium.