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2300AD & 2320 Discussion of the original 2300AD from GDW, the revised 2300 from Mongoose Publishing, or QLI's 2320AD.

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Old May 17th, 2008, 09:16 PM
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Default A grim irony about the Kafers

Re-reading my copy of Mission Arcturus, I came across Claire Laval's report to Nicolas Ruffin on Kafer psychology and her suggested explanations as to the unprovoked and unmerciful Kafer attacks on humanity. She suggested that the Kafers recognized that other alien species could possess long-term intelligence and sought to use this threat to permanently raise the intelligence of the Kafers. Her first suggestion, however, was that the Kafers feared humanity because of our long-term intelligence: If the Kafers' short-term intelligence was increased by violent encounters, how much more violent would a species with permanent intelligence be? As Laval put it, "[t]hey believe then that they are fighting for their existence against a foe who outmatched them in both cunning and in potential for violence."

If this last was a motive of the various Kafer suzerains, it backfired spectacularly by inspiring the very spectacular human ultra-violence that the Kafers so feared. Between the nuclear winters visited on Triumphant Destiny's worlds, whatever happened to Lambda Serpentis, Lutke's perhaps excessive bombardment of Gamma Serpentis IV, and the deployment of a virus on Gamma Serpentis III that arguably made the Kafers sub-sentient, the Kafers have come perilously close to experiencing an extinction event. Perhaps as many as two billion Kafers died in total, by far most of the survivors living on the Kafer homeworld. Only a half-billion Kafers lie beyond Gamma Serpentis, living in organized and technological societies.

I'm a bit hard-pressed to come up with a way that this can be made into an adventure seed, although I suppose that it's probably quite true that the Kafer suzerainties beyond Gamma Serpentis are frantically trying to innovate (how?), especially with the human presence in Ylii space. I just thought it might be interesting to share this note on Kafer self-destructiveness. Long-term intelligence could have helped them quite a bit ...
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