Andromeda's Heleus Cluster that are either the strongest possible candidates for settlement or whose resources could bolster the Initiative's chances at long-term survival. Based on survey data and long-term projections, some are believed to be garden worlds capable of supporting life. Others are mineral "treasure troves" that could supply fledgling colonies with vital resources.
These worlds were designated Habitats 1-7. While not generally used in planetary surveying, the term "golden worlds" was coined by the Andromeda Initiative's marketing team and has stuck ever since.
List of Golden Worlds
- Formal name: Eos
- Observed conditions: "Arid yet comfortably habitable, with vast underground rivers."
- Actual conditions: Heavily contaminated by lethal Scourge radiation, compounded by constant storm-force winds. The radiation causes rapid deterioration of all vehicles and equipment. The kett also built a major power station on the planet and are studying the local Remnant tech.
- Viability achieved: Activating the planet's main Remnant vault caused an immediate reduction in radiation and cleared the skies. Within days, radiation levels across Eos dropped to safe thresholds.
- Formal name: Elaaden
- Observed conditions: "(Moon) Incredible mineral and resource wealth."
- Actual conditions: Though still rich in minerals, Elaaden is a desert hellscape with no surface water. An unprotected individual trapped in direct sunlight would die from their blood boiling in 75 seconds. Hostile scavengers and gangs, mostly Nexus exiles who were themselves ejected from Kadara Port, also roam the deserts. The angara had established small mining operations on Elaaden and one of its sister moons, but no permanent settlements.
- Viability achieved: Activation of the Remnant vault increased the presence of cloud-forming particulates in Elaaden's sky and caused an immediate, sharp drop in temperature. Though the moon was still brutally hot, moisture levels rose noticeably, increasing ambient humidity and the likelihood of rain. Nexus scientists expected Elaaden would soon experience widespread flash flooding.
- Formal name: Havarl
- Observed conditions: "Rolling hills and rich jungle."
- Actual conditions: The angara homeworld. Partial reactivation of Remnant monoliths had caused an ecological imbalance, with flora and fauna forced into accelerated, maladaptive growth cycles. Rapidly-growing plant life mostly destroyed an angaran scientific outpost in less than a week. Angaran scientists estimated Havarl's biosphere would fail within a matter of years.
- Viability achieved: Activating the planet's third monolith returned the Remnant vault to its normal function, and the ecological imbalance was corrected. The more aggressive and mutated species began dying off, and were replaced by soil-enriching and pollinating species. Havarl will soon become a welcoming garden world.
- Formal name: Kadara
- Observed conditions: "Life-sustaining garden world with plenty of liquid water."
- Actual conditions: All water on Kadara proved to be highly polluted by sulfuric acid and geysers, with large-scale purification impractical, but the environment is otherwise tolerable. The local angaran colony, a small trading post named Kadara Port, was also occupied by kett before being seized by Nexus exiles, who now control it.
- Viability achieved: Sampling shows that activating Kadara's vault has dramatically improved water quality. New algal blooms and microbial life have emerged, which eat and metabolize sulfide minerals in the ground water before serving as a food supply for larger animals.
- Formal name: H-047c
- Observed conditions: "(Moon) Suitable for dextro-protein life."
- Actual conditions: The Scourge destroyed the moon, turning it into a debris field exposed to lethal levels of cosmic radiation. It will never again be suitable for any life. Nexus Exiles have set up shielded mining camps to extract what little helium-3 is available.
- Viability achieved: Though the moon could not be saved, a Remnant Tiller on the largest fragment was activated which would expose more soil to radiation and greatly increase helium-3 yields. SAM estimated that H-047c would supply the Andromeda Initiative with enough fuel to last for 368 years, making the Nexus energy-independent.
- Formal name: Voeld
- Observed conditions: "Life-sustaining temperate garden world."
- Actual conditions: A major angaran colony world. The Scourge altered Voeld's orbit, throwing it into a severe ice age. Heavy kett presence has made Voeld the frontline in the angara-kett conflict.
- Viability achieved: Activation of the Remnant vault caused a controlled release of carbon dioxide from the ice, which cleared the skies' cloud cover and immediately raised the temperature by 3 degrees Celsius. Since the vault did not have the power to restore Voeld's original orbit, it had to settle for gradually thawing the ice age using the greenhouse effect.
- Formal name: Habitat 7 (later renamed Ryder-1)
- Observed conditions: "Lush tropical paradise."
- Actual conditions: An energy feedback loop between the planet's Remnant structures and the Scourge created an unbreathable atmosphere, extreme magnetic activity, and constant lightning storms, making Habitat 7 uninhabitable. The kett have a presence on Habitat 7, but the storms are as hazardous to them as anyone else.
- Viability achieved: Activation of the Remnant structure halted the processes tearing the planet apart, but it remained centuries away from full restoration. The Andromeda Initiative later deployed Milky Way terraforming tech to speed the process slightly, and renamed the planet "Ryder-1" in honor of Pathfinder Ryder.
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