The Race of Offworld
The Race of Offworld, often simply referred to as "the race", is a 6000 mile long survival race created nearly 500 years ago by The Syndicate as both a research project, and a means to torment anyone whom the controllers chose to bring to the planet over the time that the race has been in progress. At the beginning of the series, the race has been going on for a little over 500 years, and yet nobody has won it yet, although there are many who have tried, but ultimately failed.
The race began about 500 years ago in the early 1500's on the planet Kepler-452b in the Kepler star system. The planet was originally a rocky void world with no life, little atmosphere, and no natural ability to support life. Once the planet was chosen as the eventual home of the soon coming race, the Syndicate began terraforming the planet, slowly transforming it from an unlivable rock in the "Goldilocks Zone" of the Kepler star system, into a Class M planet with Earth like characteristics. Afterwards the controllers began populating the planet with plants and animals, but quickly discovered that the planet's unique characteristics prevented them from directly transplanting animals from Earth onto Offworld. So some genetic modifications were made to each species of planet and animal that was brought to the planet, with repeated experimentation being done until viable species were created. After the planet was made fully inhabitable, supporting species, such as the dragons, were either created, or brought over from other similar worlds elsewhere to help either further populate the planet or, as in the case of the dragons, provide the Syndicate with loyal servants and enforcers in some cases.
The rules of the race are simple.
- Only those who are 1st generation racers (ie, those brought to the planet) can participate. All others, including their dependents, as well as dragons, wolves or anyone else who is not a 1st generation racer, is considered dead weight and will not be allowed to participate.
- Only racers can use the resource nodes. 2nd generation and beyond can still use the trail, but can't make use of the resource nodes.
- If one person wins the race, EVERYONE gets to go home. However, that only applies to 1st generation racers. 2nd generation and beyond will be left behind at that time to fend for themselves. At this point the race will cease all operations as well and no further individuals will be brought to the planet to participate in the race.
- Attempts to cheat and win the race dishonestly, or by intentionally using any medium that circumvents the normal methods of transportation on the course will result in immediate disqualification (ie, death) of the cheater. But all artificial means of transport are forbidden, such as trains and airplanes. Exceptions can be made to this policy, such as for transport by horse, ship, etc. However, enforcement of this rule is generally handled on a case by case basis.
- Attempted removal of any controller installed implant, either by the user of the implant, or by any 3rd party, will result in swift and immediate punishment by death. These implants are not to be intentionally tampered with or destroyed in any way.
- If any racer loses their identifier chip, or has it stolen, they are immediately disqualified from further participating in or winning the race.
- These rules may change, be added to, subtracted from, or exceptions made to them at any time at the discretion of the controllers with no prior warning or reason at all.
Since shortly after the race began, a prophecy has existed foretelling of the day when the race would be won and everyone on the planet who was a racer would be allowed to go home. This was made by an older gentleman who was a prophet who was snatched up along with many of the early participants of the race and brought to Offworld. This was latter added to by Reverend Kinson who made a prediction, not about how the race would end, or by who, but rather about when its last days would be upon them, and when the final countdown to victory would begin. This prophecy was given around the time that the race was about 400 years old.
Layout of the Race
The race is broken up into six sections called Hextants and is laid out in an east to west configuration, with racers starting at the Reception Center in the far east, and completing their journey at the finish line in the far west. The race is spread out across two major continents divided by the Great Sea and populated by hills, mountains, valleys, prairies and much more along the way. The geological and physical obstacles that exist along the trail are placed there depending on what the controllers sought to do at any one point in the race. Every racer who arrives on the planet is processed at the Reception Center and given an Initial Starter Pack before being sent out into a pre-staging area outside of the reception center where they can join groups, prepare themselves, or any number of other things before starting on the race.