- This is an NPC faction. See the affiliated player factions listed below. There are also two (none official palyer faction) IDs at the moment: Zoner ID & Zoner Militant ID.
|Date of founding||unknown|
|Base of operations||Planet Gran Canaria, Omega-49|
|Colonising the unsettled areas of Sirius|
The Zoners are a diverse group of individuals who, for various reasons, have decided to live in the wild and unregulated systems outside colonial control. Over time, the Zoners have evolved into an influential and rich factions that invests a lot into deep space exploration, much like The Order. When The Order allied with the Corsairs, Zoner relations with the Outcasts became no less tense than with the Corsairs. However, the Zoners of Omicron Theta felt they were powerful enough to defend themselves from both factions, and to this day, skilfully use the antagonism between Outcasts and Corsairs for their own benefit.
Since the beginning of human settlement in Sirius, Zoners were perceived as people who decided to resign from the guaranteed safety of the Houses. They set out to live their lives in the more dangerous, but also auspicious environments of the Edge Worlds, which were collectively known as The Zone. The migration of former House citizens into these territories was akin to the old Earth’s “Exploration of the Great Frontier.” Men and women from a variety of backgrounds brought what little they could carry into unknown voids of space. These Zoners ranged from mere adventurers to the socially disadvantaged; from prisoners to corporate tycoons. But no matter what reasons drove people out of the relative safety of the Houses, every one of these civilians wanted to start a new life.
One can imagine how painstakingly difficult it was for the first Zoners in the Edge Worlds. They had to abstain from the comforts provided by well established infrastructures of their former homes, so the only way to begin a new life away from the developed parts of Sirius was to sell rare goods found in the Outer Systems to House corporations and criminals alike. Trading became crucial for their survival. They traveled to every corner of Sirius in order to exchange goods, and in the process ignited the first wave of Zoner Immigrants. As traders from the Edge Worlds emerged, now flying under an Independent banner, they attracted a flood of civilians who were largely impressed by the Zoners’ freedom and prosperity. The news of Zoners spread through Sirius attracting more and more people - craftsmen, veterans, scientists, artists and criminals - many of whom changed their identity and tore down all connections to their respective communities. Their new life had to be tightly bound to a neutral attitude towards political plots and struggles, which gave them the necessary security to travel wherever they wished. Some historical evidence also suggests that the Zoners’ separatist approach toward all factional organizations indirectly resulted in the acclaimed neutrality they maintain to this very day.
The Zoners’ primary focus was civilizing the harsh environments they sought refuge in, but they were still too few to build solid infrastructures in order to colonize inhabitable planets, so they started to build space stations and small habitats. Losing lots of their ships exploring the Edge Worlds they learned to be cautious and they learned to value life more than anything else, at least their own. Living in systems with a vanishing density of population they also got used to relying on themselves, preferring independence, personal responsibility and freedom, but they also had to learn to cooperate with each other, just slowly at first, as their will to survive left no other choice to them. These loose cooperations lead to the founding of little communities moving from location to location in order to find new resources and ways to improve their lives. Today it seems to be cynical, but they lived like nomads.
Many years passed, and some of these scattered communities grew slowly but steadily, still attracting more and more people. They claimed abandoned stations, like Freeport 2 in 650 A.S., or built new marketplaces, like Freeport 1 in 738 A.S., at junctions of well-known trade routes to ensure the better provision of daily needs. The first communities settled on habitable planets (Erie in 761 A.S.), and other communities, led by dropouts with scientific backgrounds, launched prototypes of the now fabled Juggernauts into space which were supposed to serve as colonial holds, transports, exploring vessels and support facilities. These ships were also designed as ships of war , although they where never used in this role. They had the resources to build them, so they did.
But Zoners had neither enough time, nor a real need to concentrate on developing military power, although they have always been able to develop technology to be among the best Sirius has ever seen. Their love for freedom and individual occupations as well as the wide spread areas they were living in never allowed the foundation of a common military organization. They preferred to spend their income for further scientific advance, conforming with their curious nature, personal luxuries and new ways of colonizing and perhaps exploiting the Edge Worlds, and most people of Sirius appreciated the Freeports as bastions of freedom where commodities could be traded and information gathered freely and unmolested by House authorities. The first Zoner bases did not even have local security personnel, so most Zoners learned quickly to balance opinions, and to abstain from political interference in order to diffuse conflicts at the initial source of the problem. This neutral attitude and indifferent behavior towards almost everyone founded their reputation as good diplomats. The first noticeable common effort of Zoners to sustain their neutral position is their neutral role in the epic conflict between the Corsairs and the Outcasts.
Beside their neutral attitude towards everybody Zoners had to establish reliable trade contracts as well. The first of this kind was established with the Gas Miners Guild due to each side's satisfying experiences over the years, finally leading to an alliance that is flourishing until today. A second and very delicate alliance has also been forged, which is not completely undisputed among Zoners today: In the prelude of the Nomad War, Zoners were among the first who encountered specimen of these aliens. Never being involved into serious conflicts, thus unable to find quick solutions to this new threat, and feeling secretly responsible for the alien's spreading - it was a Zoner who was to be contaminated first - they appreciated the secret work of the legendary Liberty renegade Caspar Orillion. The Zoners had no choice but to support his work, called The Order, with logistics, financing and intelligence, and due to the fact that The Order was able to achieve a temporary victory against the Nomads, this alliance has lived on until today developing into a mutual exchange of technology routed through intermediaries in the enduring fight against these aliens.
Today the Zoners and their reputation are famous throughout Sirius. Some might even say infamous, depending on their point of view. Zoners are still struggling to reconcile their political neutrality with their desire for individual freedoms, but their answers to this struggle are embodied in groups like the Temporary Autonomous Zoners and new organizations, the Omicron Supply Industries and the Zoners Trading Consortium, as well as the uncounted free-spirited individuals of the Zoner Union of Independents journeying under the Zoners flag, all together organized in the Zoner Alliance. Things are still changing in Sirius of course. The competition for resources is continuing, and the Houses are engaged in power plays with each other. The great war between Corsairs and Outcasts lasts, while the descendants of the long lost colonial ship Gallia have been found again. Almost forgotten is the alien threat, but even Nomads have learned from their defeat preparing their retaliation. It seems that Sirius is subjected to strong emotions that today's Zoners cannot ignore, but they are well prepared to face new challenges.
Known Zoner Ships