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By the hands of the Gods, you have been plucked from your time and from your world, dropped into the box. Only the box is a world of its own.

We are a mass crossover based on the concept of Pandora's Box. Characters from nearly any fandom can be played here. Because of the endless character possibilities, we are canon only here at Pandora. Take a peek at our rules and plot information before starting your new life in Pandora.

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The Cosmic Wilderness

Discussion in 'Encyclopedia' started by Siri, Aug 12, 2016.

  1. Siri

    Siri je suis loser

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    The Cosmic Wilderness

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    A vast cosmic universe stretches in all directions from the boxed world, though it is far too dense and richly populated with bright stars, vibrant gases, and heavenly bodies to be truly called "Space". Its composition seems to warp at a far more erratic rate than within the box; a black hole in one region may not be there the next day, and what was once a distance of five light-years across may expand or contract without warning.

    Introduction


    Pandora's Ceiling & Entry Points

    From an individual standing on ground level, Pandora's upper boundary seems as in-tact and operational as it's always been, just like its unrelenting surrounding four walls. Most weather patterns and illusory constellations on a clear evening sky are not reflective of Cosmic Wilderness activities, but extraordinarily bright and vivid phenomena from space may be visible on occasion.

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    As one approaches the ceiling's upper limit, passing a threshold of about 100 meters away, the cracked nature of the ceiling will reveal itself. Jagged fissures appearing like cracks in smooth glass are visible in certain parts all throughout Pandora. This is most clear when the contrast between Pandora's simulated skies and the Cosmic Wilderness is at its greatest - for instance on a bright and beautiful day.

    Follow the network of pattern-like cracks, and you will eventually come across one of the ruptures in the ceiling, the doorways to and from the Cosmic Wilderness. These will vary from a size that space ships can pass through to person-sized ones to pinpricks barely large enough for a fly.

    Note that both the cracks and ruptures cannot be patched or enlarged in any way, short of divine Loremaster intervention. They are for all intents and purposes static.

    So, what happens immediately after passing through?

    The environmental difference is fairly stark. There is just enough of a thin, residual atmosphere to walk around the outer surface of the cracked ceiling, although most people will find themselves short of breath before long. The outer surfaces of the box itself have a reflective, mirror-like quality, but also shine as if illuminated from within. The farther one travels from it, the brighter this illumination actually seems to get until it rivals the brightest of stars.

    Beyond that, the only view is of an endlessly wild space with twinkling stars and heavenly bodies suspended far around and overhead.

    Attributes


    Size & Scale

    While space as we know it in our own world is infinite, the so-called outer space that exists around Pandora's Box only offers an illusion of infinity. With the box world as its center point, it has a radius of roughly 500 light-years in all directions (in comparison, the Milky Way is estimated to be 100,000 light-years across).

    What makes Pandora's cosmic wilderness seem larger than it is can primarily be attributed to the fact that distances between objects are much shorter than astronomers from Earth would expect. The distance between objects within solar systems are comparable to the real world; however, the distances between solar systems themselves are never farther than ½ of a light-year at the absolute maximum.

    Furthermore, the fabric of reality begins to twist and bend drastically the closer one approaches this 'edge' of space. As a hypothetical ship nears the edge, it will invariably find itself swallowed by a wormhole or simply blink out of existence as it is warped into another random point in space (with or without minimal-to-lethal turbulence; ymmv).

    Points of Interest

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    Rule of Thumb: If you think you can find it in Space (real space as we know it), it can almost definitely be found here. If you don't think it can be found in Space, there's still a good chance it can be found here. Black holes and supernovas and massive multi-color gas clouds like something out of Photoshop? Absolutely. Giant floating space turtle with plant life growing from its shell? You name it! The overall theme is more sci-fantasy than sci-fi.

    Alien life? The Cosmic Wilderness is rife with living creatures of most kinds, ranging from microbes to monstrously huge worm beasts burrowing holes and tunnels in an asteroid field. If you can imagine it, it probably exists. What currently cannot be found are groups of intelligent life forms that can form complex societies. Functional civilization itself can only seem to thrive within our good old box world, although an explorer might uncover cryptic ruins hinting at past societies on certain planets and moons.

    Accessibility and Exploration

    Hundreds of light-years may be minuscule compared to the scale of a bona fide galaxy, but specialized technology (or magic, magic works too) is still essential for traversing Pandora's space in meaningful ways. Since the physics of the Cosmic Wilderness is obviously not comparable to IRL space, explorers can take advantage of its unstable and very sensitive fabric of reality by proverbially punching holes through it and travel mindblowing distant lengths within relatively very little time.

    Floor

    Pandora's Box actually sits flat on a reflective floor that stretches the entire lower base of the Cosmic Wilderness, mirroring the heavenly bodies above it. It's smooth and hard much like Pandora's walls and can be walked on with more of that residual atmosphere dense enough to breathe. Chances are you'll just be walking for a very long time before reaching anything interesting, though it is possible to stumble over the odd oasis or mysterious construct that the Pandora Pantheon deigns to leave.

    The floor has its own gravity comparable to within the box world, but it is much easier to break out of. Make a jump over a meter tall, and you might find yourself floating away.

    Atmosphere

    More parts of the Cosmic Wilderness have a breathable, survivable environment than you would expect. From pockets of habitable air on the moon itself to the surfaces of distant comets to even a cloud of gas, there are places that an unprotected human can find themselves in without immediately expiring from exposure.

    Granted, more than half of the regions in space are still riddled with radiation, extreme temperatures, zero oxygen, and other deadly conditions, but you're never too far from a spot where you can relax and enjoy the view.

    Warp Tunnels

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    The quickest way to traverse dozens to hundreds of light-years (aside from magical portals and teleporting) is via a starship equipped with the engines and drives that will punch these warp tunnel holes toward where it wants to go. StarsX, the first organization which attempted to explore Pandora's space in a meaningful scale, has modeled their technology after the hyperspace drives in Star Wars in combination with the Magi-Tech available in Pandora Town. The concept, though different, is similar - and can be thought of as a mix between Star Wars hyperspace jumping and Star Trek warp speed.

    Entering a warp tunnel may or may not be dangerous, depending on the structural integrity of your warp drive. It's advisable to keep a reliable navigator on hand (or some kind of sixth sense seer) so that you don't end up pulling out of Warp inside the core of a planet—which can be a bit difficult since things like to move around, just like in the box world, with no rhyme or reason, with increasing intensity as you move farther from center ... Best to hire that seer.

    Beyond?

    If you have the Speed Force and/or other kinds of teleportation and magic and tech that will allow you to walk all 500 light-years from Pandora's Box to the outer limits of the Cosmic Wilderness, and manage to avoid the ubiquitous wormholes, spacial looping, and other resistances - Congratulations! All impressions of deep space break down into featureless grey-scale. You have made it to Tabula Rasa, the sketchbook part of Pandora where the Pantheon is still apparently trying to figure out what to make. Blank sheet visuals and unfinished, floating, crooked, raggety etc features galore! Endlessly! Seriously endless, this time!

    I will end that note here since that particular region of Pandora probably deserves a lorebook entry of its own. :p
     
    #1 Siri, Aug 12, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2017