Five hundred million. A decent amount of isk for any capsuleer. A stockpile of ammo that would make any industrialist, pirate, or combat pilot leap for joy. A well fit battleship, with good fittings. Five hundred million of almost any item can be exchanged for great value and used to buy a capsuleer’s next ship, implant, or module. But five hundred million lives is a different calculus altogether. But that’s how many lives were lost March 10, YC 111 in the heretofore relatively unknown system of Seyllin. It was an inconceivable number of lives. It’s amazing how reasonable or even small five hundred million can seem when talking about the proper units, but talking about five hundred million people puts it well beyond any sense of comprehension.
If only we had had more warning, such a human disaster could have been averted. Alas, it was only hours between the first indication that something was amiss and the impact of the “large, superheated mass” (to put it in cold, scientific terms; perhaps the only way to even begin to think about such events) in Seyllin. All told, from a mining colony of five hundred million people, only 843,000, or 0.1%, were evacuated. I tried to remind myself that we should be grateful that these events didn’t take place in the heart of any of the empires, but it was cold comfort to think that in the midst of such tragedy.
No one is quite sure what caused the disaster at Seyllin, or the three other systems affected by strange solar occurrences that day. It is surely not coincidental that wormholes appeared the same day. Presumably whatever ripped spacetime apart enough to cause these temporary holes in space caused the outpouring of solar energy that led not only to Seyllin, but to the death of an entire Thukker tribe caravan. Such catastrophic energies were not to be taken lightly, but of course that hasn’t stopped some capsuleers from venturing through into the unknown. Despite the roiling energies that caused the wormholes in the first place, I found it almost heartening that the wormholes never lasted very long, as if space itself was trying to mend the harm done to it by these catastrophic events.
With his background in mind, I made a point of visiting as many of these shattered planets as my schedule would allow. They were hauntingly breathtaking in their beauty. Rings of debris, or rather, chunks of the planet, formed an arc around the each planet, tumbling slowly in space. I couldn’t help but wonder if this debris would form smoother ring systems in the distant future. The planets themselves were red-hot, due to the massive amount of stress the planet interior had undergone. Even Seyllin’s nightside glowed with heat. Presumably, those that weren’t killed in the initial impact of the mass in Seyllin were baked to death as the planet’s surface melted. Nothing, even with our advanced technology, could survive that.
The idea that anything, natural or manmade, could create so much havoc was utterly terrifying. Planets were often one of the comforting constants of a changing universe. Always there, never changing. To see such destruction wrought on not one planet, but four, was startling. I wasn’t comfortable looking at these shattered planets, mere echoes of their former selves, but I forced myself to look at every one of them, not only to pay my respects to those lost, but to remind myself that even planets can die.
- Attraction: Shattered Planets
- System: Seyllin
- Security Rating: 0.4
- Region: Essence
- Potential Hazards: Some planets are deep in 0.0 space, involving jumps across a number of different alliance territories, many of which may be operating under “Not Blue, Shoot It” protocol. Gate camps can be found often in transitioning from 0.0 to high security space, as well as on other gates. Caution is advised. Seyllin is located in low security space, and you may run into gate camps here as well.
- Locations: Shattered planets can be found in T-IPZB (Delve); SL-YBS (Great Wildlands); Z8-81T (Immensea); 3HQC-6 (Outer Ring); EAWE-2 (Stain); 35-RK9 (Syndicate). Other shattered planets can be found in locus signatures J115422 (Class 5) and J164104 (Class 3) in wormhole space. Thanks to Arvash over at Interstellar Privateer for his putting this list together.
- Additional Note: Despite repeated search attempts, there are apparently no actual ruins of the Thukker Tribe caravan in SL-YBS, despite the EVE Online canon that states that a caravan disappeared here. Please contact me if you discover any debris.