Artstyle guide:Aeran

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Universe Background

see also: Aeran Species Description

Origin

Gravity: ~1.3x Earth-normal

Atmosphere: Nitrogen-Oxygen (24% O2), with minor nobles (neon, argon), carbon dioxide, and water vapor

Primary liquid bodies: water, ~80% surface cover, continents small, large islands frequent

Average temperature of homeworld (pre-industrialization): ~300K

Sun: Orange

Primary challenges (pre-industrialization): Extremely competitive and invasive ecology.

Physical

Dimensions: 2-3 meters in length from the head to the end of the balancing tail. 1 - 1.25 meters high at each of the four leg-shoulders.

Mass: 200-250 Kg

Skeletal system: Multivertebrate(4) with interleaved rib arrangement, bilateral symmetry

Major divisions: Tail, midsection (hindlimbs to midlimbs), foresection (midlimbs to arm-shoulders), neck, head

Senses: Audio, visual, chemosense (all in head). Tactile (skin, strongest at hands, rear-feet, tail)

Visual acuity: Aera cannot see in the dark, but do have excellent low light vision. Long distance focus is inferior to that of humans, but motion sensing and clarity of short and medium ranges is superior to human norms.
Chemosense: Aerans have both external (lower face) and internal (mouth) chemosense organs. Aerans are mouth breathers, and do not have nasal passages. External chemosense organs are used primarily to assist in lending directional information to scents picked up by the internal chemosense organs.

Locomotion: The ancestors of the Aera ambled about amid the lowest layers of a continent-spanning, towering jungle. The Aera prefer to scamper as often as walk, and move on their mid and hindlimbs, their foresection parallel with the midsection, arms tucked in, and tail extended for balance.

Manipulators: Two hands, each with a 2+1 finger/thumb arrangement

Textural appearance: Leathery skin, thick over most parts of the body. Ashen gray, with darker gray striations and amorphous, blotchy, yellowish patches in a pattern unique to each individual Aera

Mental

The Aeran thought processes mostly operate at speeds comparable to that of humans, but with some notable distinctions in process, efficiency and valuation of concerns. On average, Aerans possess demonstrably superior quantitative reasoning skills compared to human norms. While not completing most subtasks at remarkably faster speeds, Aerans are much less likely to make mistakes or become lost or distracted. Compared to humans, Aerans are at once chronically hyper-alert, but capable of obsessive levels of focused concentration on the task at hand. Aerans do not degrade in mental capacity as readily due to exhaustion. In general, the entire Aeran body will operate at near-full capacity through extended non-rest and stress periods, collapsing in a step-function, rather than gradual manner. Indeed, the Aeran existence is one of nearly constant stress, as they work themselves to death in lives far shorter than that of Humans, Klk'k, etc. Humans would consider all Aerans to have a thoroughly paranoid mindset. Aerans feel their concerns are entirely rational, as, historically, most things _have_ been out to get them. Aerans have extremely strong hierarchical loyalty arrangements, and, although possessed of individuated desires, excel at subverting them to the demands of the hierarchy. Through countless wars of successive integration and the institutions supporting the Aeran cultural and political hierarchy, the loyalty structure of the Aerans has enabled them to map their natural pack/clan bond affinities onto a profound species-wide affiliation. The primary goal of Aeran society is what it has always been: group survival above all else. All that has changed is the parameters and implementation details. While the Aera are not innately belligerent, they are innately non-trusting and tend towards presumptions of negative intentions on the part of the other species they have had relations with. Moreover, when the Aera feel threatened, it is easy for them to justify arbitrarily extreme measures if they believe said measures will at all increase the odds of their long-term survival. As such, the policies pursued have often been seen as startlingly aggressive by the other parties involved.

Style Overview

Appearance

Primary distinguishing color ranges: Beige/Tan/Mustard-yellow over white/gray/brown basecoats

Common accent colors: Purple, grays, browns, white

Primary lighting color: Cyan

Frequently visible: well defined front/back of ship. unibody construction/tightly-fitting armor plates. Radiators, sometimes with retractable cover-flaps. Extensions, especially on larger vessels (where they are generally topped by turrets):

extensions are vaguely teardrop shaped in cross section, the non-pointy end thereof being somewhat flattened, rather than fully round, and generally facing forward. Extensions reduce slightly in diameters of cross section as they extend from the ship, but terminate in a flat, cross-sectional face by the time the area has been reduced by ~1/2 or so from the base of the extensions.

Rarely visible: boxy corners and subcomponents, modular design, piping, windows (even Aeran civilians aren't much for star-gazing)

Seen inside, but not out: obviously separately designed mechanisms, modular internals (Aerans practice modular design, but they like to hide the fact that they do).

Moving parts(non-turret): radiator covers

Capital vs. light craft: Light craft are more heavily bilaterally symmetric than capital vessels. Capital vessels are more likely to have numerous tri- or radial symmetries. For radial symmetries, multiples of 3 are common. Light craft tend to have both front and back extensions that, although vaguely winglike in shape, are not wings, and are fairly thick in proportion to the size of the craft. The extensions are proportionately much smaller for capital vessels. Larger capital vessels tend to have forward facing spinal mounts of architecturally significant size.

Cultural Aesthetics

Aerans like clean, uncluttered structures. Aeran ships are often described as having an overall appearance much as if they had been carved out of a single block of wood or sculpted down from a large stone rather than looking built up piecemeal, as some human designs are.

Technological

Tech: Aerans excel at most applied mathematics and the physical sciences, but lag noticeably in biological sciences. Aerans clear-cut their own homeworld, driving back their ancestral jungles to make room for their industrially-oriented civilization, and prefer living entirely apart from the ecosystems of the worlds they colonize whenever possible. Aeneth-forming relies heavily on cleansing the host-planet of its native ecologies before introducing Aeran ones. Aeran colonization is a very infrastructure-intensive task compared to the techniques deployed by humans and even more so in comparison to the Rlaan. Aeran society in general is very resource intensive. While the Aeran rate of population increase and technological progress is very rapid, they left their homeworld much later than the other interstellar powers, and the further reaches of their empire are much less developed. While the planet is being rendered amenable, the Aerans will tend to focus on developing orbital infrastructure even while little-to-nothing exists on the ground, and will do so to a greater degree than other groups. The Aera shun fully autonomous AIs, as they view them as more likely competitors than allies. They view biological AI constructs in much the same light. AI research is therefore somewhat stunted in Aeran society, and certain tasks are thus much more labor-intensive. Aeran research in weapons technology is excellent, and frequently somewhat superior to that of the other factions. However, a bias toward excellence has skewed the quantity-quality trade-off somewhat toward quality over quantity. While the Aera will not forsake economic or practical efficiency wholesale, they are innately comfortable with the notion of problems being solved by the introduction of superior technologies and engineering. While Aeran technological and engineering progress is rapid, they are making up for lost time relative to the other species, and their advancement is uneven.

Weapons: Aerans have a notable preference for shield-piercing weaponry and tend to ignore options without significant shield-piercing effects. The Aerans wish to make every shot count, and are thus more limited in their potential array of death-dealing options. Most smaller Aeran weapons are ammunition based, utilizing complex warhead designs that emit a brief, intense pulse of radiation upon contact with an enemy craft's shields. The preference for shield-piercing weaponry extends to Aeran capital vessels and missile designs. Aeran craft tend to prefer using larger numbers of smaller missiles over smaller numbers of larger missiles.

Tactics:

Small groups: smaller Aeran craft, while purposed, are capable of generalist missions and are often tasked with recon and commerce raiding
Large groups/Fleets: Aerans prefer large engagements to skirmishes, as they tend to be more direct in attempting to achieve their goals.

The primary use for small craft in Aeran fleets is as a screen for larger capital vessels. Aeran interceptor craft are defensively oriented. In contrast with many other groups, the vast majority of the superiority fighters will also remain behind to guard the fleet. Corvette class vessels are the primary implements of Aeran assaults on other fleets. The Aerans do not rely on what would generally be considered bomber class vessels, and instead utilize a mix of assault corvettes, F/A light craft, and escort corvettes, the latter two acting as the primary escorts for the torpedo-rich assault corvettes. Capital vessels engage at maximum distance, and attempt to remain at distance from enemy fleets until the enemy's organization has been broken, or the fleet's missile supplies have been exhausted. Larger Aeran capital ships, even in their non-missile loadout, generally prefer a role more artillery than cruiser in nature. While Aeran destroyers are capable generalists, the majority of their armament is tailored to engaging assault vessels and other larger, less maneuverable sub-capitals. However, Aeran destroyers do tend to have very solid forward acceleration and the ability to orient all primary turrets in a forward direction for chase maneuvers. Aeran craft built specifically to counter threats in the Rlaan-Aeran conflict have a disproportionate number of weapons designed to deliver maximum damage over short time periods at short distance. Larger Aeran capital vessels are on the larger side, and significant economic investments for the Aera, even relative to most other major factions. The Aera will readily sacrifice smaller vessels to allow their larger assets to escape a losing engagement. While the Aera operate what is arguably the largest carrier currently in use (the Agesipolis), it is used more as a mobile base, moving in to hostile systems only after initial combat operations have subsided. The Aerans instead rely on jump-capable small craft, even for purely defensive scenarios, and a larger number of much smaller tender craft (currently, the Dorissus class) to repair, refuel, and rearm them. This is in keeping with the much larger role of sub-capital (non-fighter) craft in the Aeran fleets, and their ability for self-management relative to fighter-craft.

Installations: Almost all Aeran installations are armed, and any sizable one armed heavily. The Aera are very reliant on their orbital infrastructure, and will go to great lengths to defend it.

Additional information

Key Features

Canonical Examples

In Game

3D Art

2D Art

Textual Descriptions

Outliers (Canonical, but not representative)

Complete Craft Listing

Category:Produced_By:Aera

See Also