Unknown to humanity, many races of the galaxy have already begun to swim the cosmic ocean of the Milky Way Galaxy. In the thousand years since the disappearance of the Promethean civilizations, small local powers, large militaristic empires, and many civilizations beyond human comprehension have developed the ability to travel between the stars. This new age of galactic exploration has triggered a new age of Imperialism, with various factions seeking to gain colonies and resources to support growing populations and expanding economies."We on Earth marvel, and rightfully so, at the daily return of our single sun. But from a planet orbiting a star in a distant globular cluster, a still more glorious dawn awaits. Not a sunrise, but a galaxy rise. A morning filled with 400 billion suns, the rising of the Milky Way. An enormous spiral form with collapsing gas clouds condensing planetary systems, luminous super giants, stable middle aged stars, red giants, white dwarfs, planetary nebulas, super novas, neutron stars, pulsars, black holes, and, there is every reason to think, other exotic objects that we have not yet discovered."
-Carl Sagan, Surian Astronomer, to the people of Sol III, GSY 980
In one small section of the galaxy, on a small arm branching off of the of the Perseus arm known as the Orion arm, a powerful Imperium began to expand its domain, and increase its power. Winning a series of wars due to overwhelming military might, this Imperium, known as the Achenaran Imperium, seemed unstoppable and invincible. However, in Galactic Standard Year 1013, the Achenaran Imperium finally met an empire they could call an equal, or at least as near as such as they could find, and a series of non-aggression pacts were signed. This agreement, known as the Treaty of Horizon, set a status quo for a balance of power between the Central Orion region of the galaxy and the Central Sagittarius region.
Meanwhile, a new transportation network of linked stargates, known as Stellar Highways, has been expanding from its core in the Imperium into the adjacent Western Orion, Eastern Orion, and Central Perseus regions. Although currently the technology for stargates is held by an elite few technological superpowers, permission to use the network is extended to allow virtually anyone to use these gate networks... provided they maintain good terms with the powers that control them.
The Central Perseus region is showing a shift in their balance of power, as three superpowers vie for supremacy in the region, playing against each other at every turn, none of them allowing the other to make a move unchecked. Western Orion has a much more complex balance of power, as several major powers all play their hand at the power game. Meanwhile, Eastern Orion is the home of many fledgling factions, none yet powerful enough to pull a great deal of weight in international politics.
Meanwhile, a guild of Freelance independents has been building strength and influence, expanding into all known regions of space and offering their services to those who desire them.
Balance of Powers is the newest chapter in the Promethean Galaxy setting, a collaborative galaxy-building project hosted by myself and all those who would join in building something great and complex. This story will be conducted in the form of a Civilization-building Nation Roleplay (NRP), however I want to stress that this is not Game of Thrones. The goal of this RP is to build a great story together with the combined, collaborative efforts of other writers, not to "win" by conquest or destroy the creations of other people.
With that in mind, I want to state that a balance of power does not mean that all factions are equal... some powers can and will be more powerful than others, on an individual basis. Think of it instead as a balance of coalitions... all factions need allies, and very few can survive without the assistance of others. When creating your factions, I encourage you to join a coalition of allies who will support you should a more powerful faction seek your destruction. As I will be controlling one of the more powerful factions, I encourage anyone who does not seek to engage in warfare against other player-factions to join my own coalition, where you will be safe. Those who do not wish to join my coalition may instead join one of the other major coalitions, where they will be equally safe, for the most part.
This will be primarily a story-based RP. As a story-based RP, I will not require everyone to create factions, and instead encourage characters and character development. Factions are welcome for those who desire to play them, but any sci-fi writers who would instead prefer smaller-scale storylines are welcome to play individual characters, independent of any faction or even members of other players' factions, provided the person controlling the faction agrees to it. I will allow pretty much anyone to create a character or small kingdom in the Achenaran faction if they so desire.
The most important objective all is to have fun. While it is of course fun to win wars and blow up starships, keep in mind it's much less fun to lose them. There are more NPC factions than player factions, and wars against NPCs rarely cause personal conflicts between roleplayers.
So, who is interested in a modified NRP idea, but without the focus on "winning" against the other RPers?