“The object is a featureless black sphere 10m in diameter. We have received no readings from any analysis of its surface and no probes have been able to penetrate its surface. We are going to attempt to… wait there’s activity on its surface…” Dr. Simonarson, Artifact Research Project Lead
Each of the ten playable species in Lord of Rigel came across an artifact buried by the Rigelans in each home system. These artifacts, black featureless spheres, were databases with technological data for the development of faster than light technology. Almost overnight each species gained hundreds of years of technological advancement.
How each species discovered the spheres and the events after discovery varied. For the Humans, a small magnetic anomaly was discovered on a survey. Investigating the anomaly, the survey team uncovered the relic. The advances made in materials science, computing, and energy revolutionized life on Earth and its fledgling colonies. Within a year, FTL tests with automated probes were underway. Five years later the first manned FTL trip from Earth was a success. After a vote in the Sol Parliament, the decision was made to construct two starships to explore nearby systems and a colony ship with pioneers to settle a new world. However, their primary goal was to find evidence of who built the probes and if they posed a threat to humanity.
Across the galaxy on Atra, the Empire was beginning to buckle on the threat of civil war. Decades after their defeat during the last great war, the rival clans became bold and began to slowly mobilize. Deep in the desert an expedition searching for new sources of uranium for the Emperor’s nuclear stockpiles found a featureless sphere. Rushed away to the Emperor’s secret laboratories, overnight the Katraxi began to delve into the secrets of the object. Advances made in the first month such as force fields made the Emperor's armies all but invulnerable to existing weaponry. With his enemies defeated, the Emperor told the clans of a greater foe to prepare to arm against, the mysterious aliens who sent the probe that invaded their very home world. United against a common foe, the clans hurled themselves into the void of space.
One probe reached a place where it was never intended to. Trapped deep in subspace, one probe found its way into the crystalline appendages of the Arcturans. After millenia of exile the realization that their prison was weakening drove their entire collective effort as a species to find a way to escape subspace. Their hated foes, the Rigelans, were clearly intending to manipulate the younger species to follow their goals and break the cycle of ascension. With new determination, the Arcturans found a way to break free from the depths of subspace and return to the galaxy. For now, they bide their time and hope that it is not too late to save the galaxy from the machinations of the Lords of Rigel.