Virtual Crucible

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Virtual Crucible is a simulation of the Crucible Galaxy before the invasion of the Anathema.

History

The Karalian Empire was doomed to fall thanks to a combination of the war with the UESS, the LUCIS attacks, the Anathema Crisis as well as the supernova of Eye of Uszaroth. King Karrel, still holding to his philosophy of reducing as much death as possible, had commissioned a secret project in Jaran that lay the foundation for the VR networks and the ability to reconstruct someone's consciousness and body after dying. It was an ambition to essentially create a virtual parallel universe that would depict Crucible Galaxy before its end and to preserve all computational data that was exchanged between the jumpgates such as player character data in Myth Galaxy. It was essentially a backup of the entire galaxy - and that should the galaxy become completely annihilated by the Anathema, the Galactic Senate could live on inside the virtual world as if nothing had happened. Many of those who did not wish to stay in the post-Anathema world opted to enter Virtual Crucible so that they could return to the times before the disasters. However, Virtual Crucible is actually illegal as photorealistic VR's are outlawed. But with the KE's collapsing government, it was difficult to enforce. One tenth of Jaran's massive population lives within this virtual world, sleeping in large underground chambers. The VR also has connectivity with other nearby planets and star systems.

Whenever the simulation would approach the date when the UESS attacked the Karalian Empire, the simulation would reset backwards by several years and erase all memories. However, after a mere seven years, someone figured out to prevent the simulation from resetting and to allow time to continue normally. This lead to the virtual King Rustiagon Karrel to commission a simulation within the simulation, leading to the inhabitants to go into the Virtual Crucible within the Virtual Crucible. However, the process repeated itself once again. The interloper prevented the simulation from resetting and thus, another simulation within was created. The process repeated itself many times over.

When it became clear that those within the simulation were experiencing erratic brain activity from going deeper and deeper into the simulation, quarantine efforts had to be put in place. There were some people emerging from the simulation back into reality, believing they were still inside the simulation. Rustiagon Ardan had no choice but to quarantine those who had entered the simulation turning the underground chambers hosting Virtual Crucible into one of the largest mental asylums in Vaikan history.

It is not quite known who the interloper is that sabotaged Virtual Crucible, but some believe it to be a viral remnant of LUCIS. However, LUCIS's systems were confirmed to be completely destroyed when the Anathema were released. A secondary possibility was that the virus was created by Regicide to destroy Karrel's legacy, but the virus shows no immediate ties to them. The third theory was it was sabotaged by a group of ordinary criminals though this was unlikely due to the complexity of the simulation. And the last theory was a simple oversight in the programming given the massive amount of room for error. Whatever the case, a tenth of Jaran's population is stuck underground and unable to return to the real world.