Hi guys here are the descriptions and background for three of the planets I've created for my RT campaign hope you enjoy them.
For giestzieg I was inspired by a national geographic documentry on what a plent orbitting a red dwarf star would do as well as the long term (like millenia down the road) effects on the ecosystem of earth that global climate change and massive pollution could cause.
Geistzieg, the forgotten port
Found just below and to the galactic south of Lucien's Breath drifts the port of Giestzieg. Giestzieg is one of twelve planets in the system as well as Giestziegs one moon, thought to be a captured asteroid, which serves as the primary seat of imperial power and as the primary space-dock for the planet. Shuttles are readily vailable for transport to the chasm hives of the dark-side from the moon rendering the surface easily accesable. The system itself has been known to explorers for over eight centuries and despite being one of the most populous worlds lying relatively close to the Maw, Giestzieg has been left relatively unmolested by Imperial activity since it's discovery. Not to say that Giestzieg doesn't have any trade occuring but in comparison to Footfal giestziegs economy pale's.
Giestzieg itself is an enigma, it defies any real classification, part hive world part dead world and part death world Giestzieg fits all and none of these categories. The star Giestzieg orbits is a red dwarf. Red dwarfs burn cooler than that of a yellow dwarf such as Holy Sol as such planets must lie cloer to a red dwarf than a yellow dwarf if they are to support life. Giestzieg lies closer to it's parent than other worlds to their star and though the world is warm enough to be life friendly the star is able to exert a stronger pull than that of terra's sun. The gravity creats a tidal lock effect meaning theat Giestzieg has no day night cycle, one face is perpetually bathed in light the other in shadow. Lacking a day night cycle the day side of the planet is much hotter than the frigid night side of Giestzieg these extremes of temperature render most of the planet uninhabitable and mostly devoid of life save for a band of temperate climate in the "twilight ring". In addition to this Giestzieg was populated long before humanity ever arrived on it's surface meaning most of it's hive structure was not built by human hands and polution from millenium of imdustrialization has created radical changes in it's unique ecology.
If one can imagine slowly travelling from one portion of the planet too the other the description would go as follows. Starting at the most sunward portion of the planet at the equator a massive storm surrounds you. You are at the eye of this terrible storm, the air is bone dry and it shimmers in the heat so much so you can barely see the abnormally swollen red sun permentatly stuck at high noon which because it is closer than a normal star is giving you much higher levels of solar radiation such as UV rays. Travelling away from the sunward portion one enters the stormlands where a perpetual hurricane fuled by the unique conditions of Giestzieg's tidal lock has raged for time eternal. Dust and rock rip past your face so fast that they can shere flesh from bone and the lightning and thunder is more brilliant and terrible to behold than any you have seen before save for the storms of gas giants.
After passing through the storm the sun shows it's face again and peaks through the clouds onto a desolate stretch of desert flanked by the sea. Don't drink the water however, it's been poisoned by millenium of industrialization and acidified to the pH of battery acid. Creatues do live on this world, but not many are exactly hospitable to mankind. The desert only lasts for a short while and the sun slowly lowers in the horizon along with the temperatue which has finally subsided to a comfortable level. The first signs of vegetation begin to show themselves and eventually you are surrounded by all manner of flora as you enter the twilight wetlands of Giestzieg, the Acid Bogs.
The Acid Bogs are much closer to the industrial waste of Giestzieg's night-side chasm-hives. The ecosystem of this world unlike many other hive worlds has not witherd in the face of pollution but adapted to it. The ecology of life on Giestzieg is not longer harmed by pollutants which we ourselves find toxic, but is instead dependant on it. If humanity were to stop producing waste on Giestzieg, the life here would undoubtably suffer a massive extinction event which prehaps some of the worlds deep seas life and more adaptable bacteria would survive. Toxins which poison land on other worlds are vital nutrients for the biology of life on Geistzieg. The water of the Acid Bogs is toxic in the extreme and the predators and flora of this wilderness even more deadly. Murk-eels can swalow a man whole and cellapod like beasts can drag a man below by his legs to dissolve in the acid and be absorbed slowly through it's skin. The bogs have a thick carpet of floating grass and mosses which is both a blessing and a curse since it allows safe passage over the water but unwary travelers will fall through the less thick portions of the carpet it provides some times into burnpits where the pH has rise to such high levels that a man will dissolve in seconds. Mutant tribes also hunt in the dense leaves of this place, since even the few edible animals and plants of this place are slightly toxic the most succulent meal for the natives of this terrible place is human flesh.
Where the sun touches the horizon the temperature continues to drop and the first signs of civilazation appear. The acid rain here prevents structures made from anything but local vegetation from being built or at least standing for longer than a decade so the first populated areas will appaer rather more rural and unpopulated than the night-side hives. Finally we have begun to cross over to the dark-side of the world. As the sun sets the vegetation is replaced by more dessolation again but this time a desolation of ice and tundra. Here massive glaciears can bee seen on the horizon and one must climb in order to reach the night side, which while cold is for the most part windless. Eventually light can be seen to be coming from the distance and the deafening busle of a hive city replaces the cold silence of the rest of the night-side.
Curiously the noise seems to be coming from bellow and as you scale down from the glacier onto more rocky ground you find a massive canyon deeper than 6000 feet and close to 13 miles wide on average. An intense heat and glow can be seen coming from the bottom of the canyon and for good reason, the canyon floors are volcanic and rivers of lava flow through them providing the source of geothermal power for the hives which have been built into the walls of the gorges. These volcanic gorges criss cross the night-side of the planet making it seem to be cracking apart when seen from orbit. Large portions of the hives seems dead and unpopulated despite the fact that nearly 2 billion inhabit the whole hive. Underpopulated compared to imperial hive worlds maybe but here in the Expanse there is no greater concentration of human life short of the Heathan Stars or Damaris.
The Chasm-Hives as they are known are bustling with merchants of many xeno races. There is a modest imperial presence but the the Holy Imprium has yet to bring this world truly to heel and here xeno and human live side by side quite often. The culture of the world is quite interesting, great respect is payed to ones ancestors who are worshipped as near semi devine beings. When one dies your body will be cast over the side of the city balconies into the lava flows below and your ashes will drift free, carried on the same thermal updraft which now carries a lantern attached to a parachute with the dead's name painted on it. Hundreds of these lanterns drift between the walls powerd by the heat from bellow, they along with the laval glowing bellow provide the only light during the night-cycle. As one travels deeper into the walls the truly alien orgin of the chasm-hives quickly asserts itself. While humans have for millenium built over the previous owners works the alien architecture become clear the deeper one enters the "catacombs" which can be considerd the underhive of this world. Mutants and witches flee into these area's seeking refuge from persectution and slavery.
The major hives of today are Poi Poi Hoy, Hie-baun and Changraun. Once Hie-Baun was the capital of the world ruled by the Bauguan (pronounced bow-g-wan), or king of Giestzieg but when the last ruling Bauguan refused to convert to the imperial creed he was quickly killed along with his extended family. Many other noble families of the time met a similar fate. Though the missionarium has had much success in the centuries since the regicide with the conversion of the human population, old traditions die hard and many natives still lack the proper hatred for xeno they should have. More worryingly many resent even the minimal imperial presence on the planet despite sharing the same faith. The noble families which survived the slaughter have now become forced to rely upon more illegal forms of financial support such as the cold trade of artifacts from the deep of the catacombs and the drug trade. This has changed the noble families from political powerhouses to hereditarily owned criminal empires.
Giestzieg has the potential to rival Footfall as a port of trade but is held back by it's populations hatred of outsiders. If one were to some how restore the noble to power and appoint one of them as imperial governor surly this could be resolved yet noone has thought to do this. The acid-bogs must surely hold a beast or two fit for calixian beast-houses or prehaps some as of yet undiscoverd phamecuticals. The hids of animals from these areas are higly prized as well. There are many ooportunies on this world for profit if one is willing to invest the time and reasorces.
(Imagine the chasm hives as shanghai at night built onto the walls of a more narrow grand canyon with a lava river flowing below, the culture of this world is meant to be very very oriental)