SPOILERS: Plot info, ASW 3-5

#1
This was supposed to go in the ASW3 pack, but it slipped my mind :oops: So here we present to you, the plot outlines for the unfinished acts of the Ancient-Shivan War.

These are the worked-out mission scripts of act 3.1, April-May 2011. Yes, act 3 was gonna be a two-part release. You'll notice that the nodemap does not have the exact same network that the [V] one does: in eight thousand years, some nodes have vanished, others appeared only after the Ancients were wiped out.
Image
Cutscene 1: Introduction

Command briefing:

The Shivans disappeared cycles ago. But the legacy they left, was fear. Never before, and never since have we encountered such a potent foe. Indeed, the name "Inferiors" does not apply to them. While the Androgeos is the crown gem of our Race, the Shivans have scores of ships that size. And their abilities are far beyond our wildest dreams. While our Race has the power to destroy all life on a planet, the Shivans have the might over life and death... of a star. We always saw stars as a shining beacon of stability, a source of light, warmth, and indeed, life. We used to face a star, and feel its warmth, as a reminder that there was more out there. It assured us about the greater good, and that we would fight to defend it. We purged the Voids of those unworthy to travel them.

But the Shivans have demonstrated the ability to turn such a star into a devastating weapon. They can turn a star against us, make it unleash its full power upon our ships and our colonies. Who knows what more they can do? It seems impossible that a race with this kind of abilities should exist, a race with power over the ways of the Voids themselves. But their existence cannot be denied, however much we would want to.

Word about the Shivans spread all over the Empire, and the rumour brought fear to every one who heard it. Some even say that we have faltered in our job to cleanse the Voids, and therefore we are to be purged ourselves... But such reasoning only leads to despair.

The fear, that the Shivans brought upon us, brought with it a desire to survive. Never before have our great minds worked harder. To the Shivan shields, we responded with new weapons. And while the Shivan capital ships are powerful opponents to their equals, their weakness lies in their poor defences against small ships. Hence, new fighters and bombers have been developed and deployed, ready for use should the Shivans ever return. But only time can tell whether all this shall be enough to defeat them.

The Sopul Fleet was officially disbanded soon after the closing of the gate to Sopul. What remained of it was spread out over the different Fleets of the Empire. The Akrotiri was assigned to the Home Fleet; Fleetmaster Ty'Vlayl was made Vice Fleetmaster, under Fleetmaster Kagi'Craydo. Officially, master Ty'Vlayl was honoured by becoming Vice Fleetmaster of the Home Fleet; however on the Akrotiri, rumour has it that the Core wanted to keep a close eye on him, given his temporary 'desertion' during the Shivan incursion.

Either way, the Home Fleet is tasked with defending the Home System and the surrounding systems from unexpected incursions. Should a jump node open within our territory, we are to make sure there is no threat on the other side, and lay the foundations for colonization. But the birth of a jump node is a very rare occasion, and so our duties are usually limited to patrolling around the colonies. This way, we assure the non-combatants of our Race that the Fleet is guarding them.

Cutscene:

<cue a convoy of Ancient ships withdrawing, flying past the camera, kinda like in this pic>
And we retreated to our home system. Abandoned our empire. We believed at home we would be safe. For they are not a terrestrial species.

<view on Homeworld> We knew when we entered subspace we were trespassers. But our planet is our home.

<Lucifer flies in from behind the camera> And yet still they came. And our world is gone.

Mission 1: Shock and awe

In command briefing, the player is informed that the Akrotiri is currently on its way towards Epsilon Pegasi. It was dispatched there to assist the Epsilon Pegasi fleet in their war with the Adharans, another inferior race the Ancients recently encountered (we won't be needing actual ships for these ones). They are slightly more advanced than the Aesdherians were, in that they can perform intersystem jumps. The Adharans have already been beaten back to their home system, Adhara, where they have assembled a stronghold - the Epsilon Pegasi fleet called for reinforcements to smash it, that's why the Akrotiri is being dispatched there.

Briefing. The Akrotiri is currently in Epsilon Pegasi, ready to proceed towards Adhara. There have been some skirmishes around the node, so it will deploy a fighter escort upon arriving there.

Mission. On arriving near the node, all is quiet. The Akrotiri is a few kilometers away from the node, heading towards it. The pilots banter somewhat, curious to what their new enemy will be like, and happy to see some action again.

Suddenly, a lone Gordia cruiser jumps in through the node, and speeds towards the Akrotiri at full throttle.
From here on, the mission will be parallel to the FS1 intro cutscene. The cruiser starts with some vague banter, about the Adharans and the Ancients in the system suddenly being attacked by a third species. Seconds later, the Lucifer arrives through the node, and opens fire on the Akrotiri. Akrotiri does a crash jump, player is to follow her out.

End mission 1

The Akrotiri has signalled the return of the Shivans to the Core, who have immediately started spreading the word all over the Empire. The Akrotiri receives orders to gather survivors of the Shivan onslaught, and try to get back to the Home system.

Mission 2: Metronome

A Shivan cruiser/corvette fleet is attacking one of the few civilian stations in Epsilon Pegasi. The player is dispatched with one or two heavy fighter/fighter-bomber wings to repel the attack, while other fighters are to protect the evacuation transports.

When a few of the Shivan warships are destroyed, another Shivan fleet (cruisers, corvettes) arrives to reinforce them. Player must disarm their heavy cannons as well, to buy more time for the evacuation of the station. When that's done, the Ancients send in a couple corvettes, to attack the fleet. Player must try and keep the Shivans from escaping, by destroying their engines. The station is evacuated by now, but the Ancients continue attacking the Shivans.

However, the Shivans aren't gonna just sit there and get shot at - the Demon-class SD Obizoth soon arrives into the fray, and chases away the Ancients.

End mission 2

Meanwhile, the Akrotiri has a few stealth fighters constantly tracking the Lucifer, so they have at least some idea of what it's up to.

Mission 3: Goliath

While the Lucifer is attacking Epsilon Pegasi Fleet HQ, the player is dispatched to escort an evacuation convoy out of the system. Amount of friendly and hostile forces is up to the FREDder, though preferably nothing of destroyer level yet.

A while into the mission, the Akrotiri alerts all allied forces that Epsilon Pegasi Fleet HQ has been destroyed (many perished on board, there was not enough time to evacuate), and that the Lucifer seems to be headed for the Capella node, where the player is.

Not much later, the Lucifer jumps in right above the convoy, freaking out all the civilians. Although it launches lots of fighters and bombers onto the convoy, the Lucifer itself heads straight for the Capella node and jumps through, ignoring everything that happens to be in its path.

When the remainders of the convoy have left the system, the Akrotiri jumps in as well. Player is ordered to land immediately - the Akrotiri is following the Lucifer to Capella.

End mission 3

Vice Fleetmaster Ty'Vlayl, who still commands the Akrotiri, has decided to follow closely behind the Lucifer, so that they can pick up survivors in the wake of destruction and keep the Core informed on current events. Hence, the Akrotiri makes the jump to Capella as well.
Of the known Shivan destroyers leading the attack, only the Lucifer is currently in Capella. The Obizoth (see mission 2) is still in Epsilon Pegasi, but is expected to traverse the node to Capella soon. This gives the Ancients a prime opportunity to mount an attack on it. They expect that this will slow down the Shivan advance.

Mission 4

As soon as the Obizoth arrives through the node, the plan is to use Satyr heavy bombers to disable its engines before it can jump out again, and subsequently destroy it. The player's task in this is to ensure space superiority (aka good ol'dogfight mission), and pave the way for the bombers to attack the Obizoth.

The Obizoth shouldn't necessarily be the first or only ship to arrive through the node, of course. It may be a good idea to only send in the heavy bombers when the player has ensured space superiority, or when the Obizoth arrives, for their own safety. When the Obizoth is disabled, the Ancients could deem it safe enough to send in some cruisers and/or corvettes to help finish off the destroyer, if needed - the Akrotiri herself remains safely hidden, away from the front lines.

It's probably best if the mission proceeds more or less to plan, let the Ancients win for a change.

End mission 4

Contrary to expectations, the Lucifer keeps up its pace after the Obizoth was destroyed. It is already on its way to the Vega node now. The Ancients are quite puzzled as to why the Shivans are completely uninterested in both Mirfak and Gamma Draconis, despite a significant Ancient presence in both of these systems.
While the Akrotiri follows the Lucifer to Vega, the player is dispatched to a Shadow Fleet (special ops) destroyer in Capella, the Minos-class Vrysinas, which had asked for assistance in behind-the-lines operations against the Shivans.

Mission 5: Sand fortress

High Exarch Goz'Taray welcomes the warriors from the Akrotiri on board the Vrysinas. The first operation they'll be doing is a depot raid. At the Capella side of the Epsilon Pegasi - Capella node, the Shivans are setting up a large cargo depot. Goz'Taray has decided that no more Shivans are to get through there for a while. Fighters will take out all cargo and freighters/transports already present at the node; then they will attack and destroy anything that comes through the node. Bombers will be sent in for anything above Cain specs that may arrive.

Player flies an assault fighter, tasked with destroying the cargo. Initially, the Shivans are guarding the depot with just one or two Cains, which the player's heavy fighters can easily deal with. After destroying the cruisers and freighters, there's some time to destroy all cargo in the area. Soon, however, the next wave of Shivans arrives through the node - corvettes, cruisers. Ancient bombers are sent in to deal with them, the player must disarm the warships to clear a path for the bombers.
Next up is a Vassago, with a large warship and fighter escort. This is deemed too much to attack directly, player is ordered to return to base.

End mission 5

High Exarch Goz'Taray decides to try and destroy the Vassago they just met. The player is sent to do stealth reconnaissance near the node, where it was last seen. The goal is to extract enough data from the Shivan navigation systems to determine their upcoming plans.

Mission 6

Most of the Vassago's escorts are still near the node - however, the destroyer itself is already gone. The player will have to scan enough of the escorts to reconstruct the Shivan battle plans, and thus locate the Vassago. The escorts are also leaving the area, however. If the player fails to scan a certain number of escorts, mission fails. This could be an interesting time management game.

End mission 6

Since the location of the Vassago remains unknown, the Ancients are gonna try and lure it into position, then attack it.

Mission 7

The plan is as follows. Recon has determined that the Vassago's escorts have spread out over the system. A Shivan rally point has been located, with a Moloch and possibly one or two Cains, depending on mission balance. The plan is to attack it with a Mochlos corvette, and hope to get the Vassago to do a counterattack. When it arrives, the corvette will jump away and the Vrysinas will jump in on the flank of the Vassago, for a full-on broadside battle.

The player's task is to defend the Mochlos from Shivan fighters and bombers. The Mochlos jumps in on the rear of the Moloch, uses its side cannon to take out the Moloch's rear engines while bombers disable the front ones. Make sure the Moloch isn't destroyed too quickly now, they need to give the Shivans some time to react. (If Shivan cruisers are present, they can be destroyed.)
However, the Vassago fails to show up. Instead, ever-increasing numbers of Shivan bombers attack the Ancient corvette, which is getting an increasingly hard time. In the end, they have to give up the plan - they destroy the Moloch, and depart to a safer place. The Ancients are gonna have to think of something else to attack the Vassago.

End mission 7

Mission 8

Recon has located the Vassago near the node to Vega. Now's the time to act. The Ancients send in bombers to disable it before it can enter the node, the player's one of them. There's not much time! If the Vassago escapes, the mission failed. If the player manages to disable it in time, the Vrysinas jumps in on its flank for a full-on broadside battle (Achladias are much better at that than Vassagos). The player helps in taking out the destroyer. When that's done, the Vrysinas makes the jump to Vega, player is to follow.

End mission 8

They've drawn the attention of the Shivans now... Luckily, the Lucifer has already proceeded to Beta Aquilae - they won't have to deal with that one.

Mission 9

Shortly after arriving in Vega, the Vrysinas receives a distress signal from an asteroid field. The player is sent in to investigate. As it turns out, there's a corvette hidden inside an asteroid field. It's heavily damaged, and has no engines anymore. Several cycles ago, they were attacked by several Shivan warships, and fled into the asteroids. They managed to repel the Shivans, but not without getting their engines blown out first. Apparently the Shivans then lost track of them. Only now have they dared to signal for help. The player and his wing are ordered to stay with the corvette until a repair transport from the Vrysinas arrives.

At this point, the first Shivan fighters arrive. They must have picked up the signal as well. Luckily, the Shivans cannot field any heavy bombers - they have no destroyer-size ships in Vega at this moment, and the Moloch cannot carry Nephilim or Seraphim. So fighters and Shaitans. Player has to make sure that the transport reaches the corvette, and that the corvette can jump out safely after its engines are repaired.

End mission 9

Scans have determined that another Shivan destroyer-class vessel has arrived in the system, and apparently it's on to the Vrysinas. Since the Vrysinas is in poor shape by now, High Exarch Goz'Taray decides to try and get his ship back to the Ancient side of the front lines.
They make the jump to Beta Aquilae just as the Lucifer, and the Akrotiri still following it, are jumping towards Antares. The Vrysinas is ordered to evacuate the Quasar (?) artisanate (= factory) installation, which the Lucifer hasn't attacked yet, then follow towards Antares. They also receive word that two more Lucifers have shown up in the systems beyond Ross 128, and they are making way towards Beta Aquilae. So the Vrysinas better hurries.

Mission 10

The Vrysinas jumps in below the artisanate (so the transports don't have to fly too much). Player flies space superiority/intercept. At first the Shivans only field fighters and lighter bombers, but suddenly heavy Nephilim/Seraphim start arriving in large numbers. Not long after, a Demon jumps into the fray. High Exarch Goz'Taray knows that his ship, still damaged from previous engagements, cannot stand up to this. The Vrysinas jumps out, leaving the station only partially evacuated, and with a Demon next to it. Such is war...

End mission 10

The Vrysinas makes the jump to Antares, where the front lines currently are. The Shivans have set up a blockade at the Antares end of the node, consisting of corvettes and cruisers.

Mission 11

High Exarch Goz'Taray wants to smash the Shivan blockade at once - if the Shivans suspect that something is up, they might call for the Lucifer. In that case, the Vrysinas wouldn't be getting through the node anytime soon.
So the player flies bomber, he arrives through the node together with the Vrysinas. The ship will need some time (five minutes?) to recharge its jump drives; the player's job is to keep the Shivan warships' cannons from destroying the Vrysinas before it can jump out again. It'll be a short but intense battle - the player doesn't need to destroy all Shivan warships, just make sure the Vrysinas survives.

End mission 11

The player is transferred back to the Akrotiri, while the damaged destroyer heads towards the Home System, away from the front lines. Shortly after, the Demon following the Vrysinas arrives in Antares as well; the Ancients plan revenge for the deaths it has already caused. Although it would be too risky for the Akrotiri to engage the Demon directly, she has a complement of Satyr bombers on board, which should be able to do it.

Mission 12

The Akrotiri has received a distress signal from an Ancient corvette, which has come under attack from the Demon. The player will take two wings of Satyr bombers to disable and subsequently destroy the Shivan destroyer, while trying to save the corvette (possibly a bonus objective?). A large fighter escort is provided to take out the Demon's fighter escort. The mission proceeds more or less to plan; the player must quickly disable the Demon (else it'll jump out!), then succeeds in destroying it. All the while, more and more Shivan fighters are pouring in from the Demon as well as from subspace. We're nearing the end of the campaign, so this shouldn't be too easy. (Good or bad idea: if the player isn't fast enough in destroying the Demon, he and the others are overwhelmed by increasing numbers of Shivan fighters.)

End mission 12

Despite the Demon being destroyed, the first Lucifer jumps towards Vasuda, followed by the Akrotiri. The other two, meanwhile, have been sighted in Beta Aquilae.
Vasuda is important, because it is the birthplace of one of the few races that the Ancients found worthy to survive (as slaves, of course). The Ancients plan to buy time there, so that the Vasudans can be prepared as much as possible for whatever awaits them.

Mission 13

In order to try and buy some time, the player will fly intercept escorting two corvettes doing a diversionary strike on the Lucifer. The corvettes jump in on the Lucifer's rear, and start pummeling it. Not much use with the Lucifer's shields, but they hope to keep it busy for a while.

But it's no use. The Lucifer completely ignores the corvettes. After a few minutes, a Vassago destroyer jumps in and opens fire on the corvettes, which then have to withdraw. When the corvettes are gone, the Lucifer warps out.

End mission 13

Time's up for the Vasudans.

Cutscene 2

The Lucifer jumps in near Vasuda Prime, which is still a lively planet with lots of water at that time. It starts bombarding... camera fades out.

End cutscene 2
End part 1 of act 3
An earlier post (Feb-2011, two months before the one above), reflecting the latest state of the plot for the full act 3:

ASW ACT III

Opening monologue - A 'diary fragment' from the player's persona, for the fiction viewer

The Shivans disappeared cycles ago. But the legacy they left, was fear. Never before, and never since have we encountered such a potent foe. Indeed, the name "Inferiors" does not apply to them. While the Androgeos is the crown gem of our Race, the Shivans have scores of them. And their abilities are far beyond our wildest dreams. While our Race has the power to destroy all life on a planet, the Shivans have the might over life and death... of a star. We always saw stars as a shining beacon of stability, a source of light, warmth, and indeed, life. We used to face a star, and feel its warmth, as a reminder that there was more out there. It assured us that the greater good was still there, and that we would fight to defend it. We purged the Voids from those unworthy to travel them.

But the Shivans have demonstrated the ability to turn such a star into a devastating weapon. They can turn a star against us, make it unleash its full power upon our ships and our colonies. Who knows what more they can do? It seems impossible that a race with this kind of abilities should exist, a race with power over the ways of the Voids themselves. But their existence cannot be denied, however much we would want to.

Word spread about the Shivans all over the Empire, and the rumour brought fear to every one who heard it. Some even say that we have faltered in our job to cleanse the Voids, and therefore we are to be purged ourselves. But such reasoning only leads to despair. The fear brought with it a desire to survive. Never before have our great minds worked harder. To the Shivan shields, they responded with new weapons. And while the Shivan capital ships are powerful opponents to their equals, their weakness lies in their poor defences against small ships. Hence, new fighters and bombers have been developed and deployed, ready for use should the Shivans ever return. But whether all this shall be enough to defeat them? Only time can tell.

The Sopul Fleet was officially disbanded soon after the closing of the gate to Sopul. What remained of it was spread out over the different Fleets of the Empire. The Akrotiri was assigned to the Home Fleet; Fleetmaster Ty'Vlayl was made Vice Fleetmaster, under Fleetmaster Kagi'Cralaydo. Officially, master Ty'Vlayl was honoured by becoming Vice Fleetmaster of the Home Fleet; however on the Akrotiri, rumour has it that the Core wanted to keep a close eye on him, given his temporary 'desertion' during the Shivan incursion.
Either way, the Home Fleet is tasked with defending the Home System and the surrounding systems from unexpected incursions. Should a jump node opens within our territory, we are to make sure there is no threat on the other side, and lay the foundations for colonization. But the birth of a jump node is a very rare occasion, so our duties are usually limited patrolling around the colonies. This way, we assure the non-combatants of our Race that the Fleet is guarding them.
_____________________________________________________________

And we retreated to our home system. Abandoned our empire. We believed at home we would be safe. For they are not a terrestrial species.

We knew when we entered subspace we were trespassers. But our planet is our home. And yet still they came. And our world is gone.

_____________________________________________________________

While they were preparing to explore the node leading out of Adhara, the Epsilon Pegasi fleet has been hit by a major communications blackout. The Akrotiri has been tasked with helping them out. Transcript of the last messages from Epsilon Pegasi Fleet Command:

"Calling the Core, Epsilon Pegasi Fleet Command. 25789'0973'38912

We are making preparations to explore the node leading out of Adhara. The destroyers Eileithya and Iuktas, and their escorts, have taken position next to the node and are preparing to launch the exploration fighters. Everything shall proceed according to normal exploration protocol."

"Calling the Core, Epsilon Pegasi Fleet Command. 25832'0973'38921

We have lost contact with both the Eileithya and the Iuktas. They reported nothing out of the ordinary before contact was lost. The outage is likely due to a subspace disturbance in the Epsilon Pegasi-Adhara node. We have dispatched the corvettes Traostalos and Fournou to investigate the outage and re-establish contact. Both ships are currently on their way to the Epsilon Pegasi-Adhara node."

"Calling the Core, Epsilon Pegasi Fleet Command. 25856'0973'38928

The corvettes Traostalos and Fournou have arrived at the Adhara side of the Epsilon Pegasi-Adhara node. They reported nothing out of the ordinary. However, they did not report in on the next scheduled time. We have been unable to establish contact with them. As of yet, no word has arrived from the Eileithya or the Iuktas either."

Their next message was only partially received, and therefore could not be decoded. No word has arrived from Epsilon Pegasi Fleet Command since then, and all efforts to establish contact with them have failed so far.

The cause of this communications failure is likely a major subspace disturbance in the area; they are known to happen from time to time, although this seems to be a particularly severe one. Since these disturbances are known to damage our vessels' jump drives, many of the Epsilon Pegasi Fleet's vessels must be stranded in the Voids. As soon as the disturbance fades out, the Akrotiri will enter the system to aid with field repairs and recovery of ships in need.
_____________________________________________________________

The Akrotiri is currently in Capella, near one of the Vega Fleet's supply centres (a Thera). It is waiting until the subspace storm fades out and the node to Epsilon Pegasi will be safe to travel again. In the meantime, they're holding some combat simulation exercises. Part of the Akrotiri's fighter complement will jump out, then jump in again at a random location; the others have to defend the Akrotiri from the attacks. Which team the player is on? Doesn't really matter, whichever is most fun.
All of a sudden, TWO Lucifers jump in, and with a pretty large capship escort too. Shock! The Lucifers start beaming away at the Akrotiri. The Akrotiri immediately does a crash jump, but she's had to take a few volleys full-on.
By the time they have all fighters back on board, the Akrotiri is broadcasting the message to the entire Empire. They receive orders to gather survivors of the Shivan onslaught in Capella, and try to get back to the Home system.

While the Akrotiri gathers survivors from the rubble that the Shivans left behind, they have a few stealth fighters keeping an eye on the Lucifers at all times. Their tactic this time seems different from the first incursion; this time they're much more offensively oriented, they seem to have more of a purpose. The Akrotiri is pretty much left alone, even though it's actually behind Shivan lines. There's a sporadic cruiser group or corvette attacking it every once in a while, but that's about it. Good thing too, 'cause the ship was heavily damaged by the initial attack.
Nonetheless, Ty'Vlayl decides that it's best to keep following the two Lucifers: this way, they can keep an eye on their movements and keep the Core informed. As the destroyers depart to Vega (where the evacuation is going at full pace), the Akrotiri follows. Interestingly, the Shivans just leave Gamma Draconis alone, even though there's some Ancient presence there.

The Lucifers jump around in Vega and decimate everything on their path. The Akrotiri and its fighters try to buy as much time as they can - every instant they can keep the Shivans busy could save hundreds of lives. But they can't make much of a difference without risking the ship too much. When the Lucifers are done with Vega, they jump straight to Beta Aquilae. Their purpose becomes clear: they are headed for the Homeworld. The creepy thing is, they know exactly where to go. As if they've done this before.
_____________________________________________________________

As the Lucifers advance to Antares, news reaches the Akrotiri that three more Lucifers have entered Ancient space beyond Dubhe, and they're on their way to a rendezvous with the other two. The first two don't seem to be waiting, however, and they jump through to Vasuda.

Vasuda is important, because it is the birthplace of one of the few races that the Ancients found worthy to survive (and enslave, of course). The Ancients plan to buy time there, so that the Vasudans can be prepared as much as possible for what awaits them. After a few battles there, the Lucifers end up orbiting Vasuda. Then, the Ancients witness a thing that shocks them deeply: the Lucifers bombard the planet from orbit, just like they used to do with the planets of other races.
Having heard this, the Core rapidly orders a full withdrawal to the Home System. The Core is convinced that by using subspace and colonizing other worlds, the Ancients have called the Shivan wrath over themselves; they now want to undo this. Hence, the Ancients leave Vasuda to an uncertain fate - but as the Ancients withdraw to the Homeworld, the Lucifers closely follow them, leaving Vasuda Prime partially intact.
_____________________________________________________________

In the Home System, a big blockade has been set up in front of the node through which the Shivans will enter. That's at least one positive thing: the Shivans have only shown up on one side of the Home System, so the Ancients are not actually sandwiched - the Altair branch is still safe, although it's evacuated now.

But it is all in vain. The Lucifers smash right through the blockade, into the Home System, and go on a rampage. When one of them starts attacking the Core, the Androgeos juggernaut rams it to death by jumping in on top of it, sustaining heavy damage itself. But minutes later, the other Lucifers jump in, and the Androgeos perishes in the heavy beamfire.

After this, the Lucifers split up - two of them attack the Core, the others start glassing the Homeworld. Ty'Vlayl tries to convince the rulers of the Empire to evacuate to the Akrotiri, but they stubbornly refuse, convinced that the big Core installation is a safer place to be than a comparatively small warship like the Akrotiri. In a last hope to set right whatever the Ancients ever did wrong, the rulers order the Akrotiri to leave for the systems beyond Altair, where no Shivans have been sighted yet. They are to take the remainder of the Ancient fleet with them.

End of act III.
And an even older one, which also contains outlines for acts 4 and 5:

ACT III

And we retreated to our home system. Abandoned our empire. We believed at home we would be safe. For they are not a terrestrial species.

We knew when we entered subspace we were trespassers. But our planet is our home. And yet still they came. And our world is gone.


To me, it sounds like the Shivans suddenly started popping up everywhere at the bounds of Ancient space and pushed rapidly towards the Homeworld; the Ancients were terrified and abandoned all of their ships, retreating en masse to the Homeworld. The Lucifer then proceeded to glass the planet.


ACT IV

There are few of us left. We know we will soon be gone. And so we can see our fate as others will see it. There will be little legacy. No great expressions of what we once were. Our technology, our achievements if ever they are seen again will spawn none of the awe that filled our conquests.

We know our fate. We are being eliminated. When we traveled subspace, the cosmic destroyers took note. When we conquered and colonized in galaxies where we had no place, the destruction and the anguish and the loss were the clarion call of our doom. And so the destroyers came for us.


The few survivors or bunkered-in people could no longer live on the planet, and they went back to the abandoned ships (which still floated about somewhere in the system). They then left their home system, running and hiding from the Shivans pursuing them, hoping to finally shake them off one day and find a planet to live again.
But the Shivans keep coming after them, eliminating them ship by ship by ship.


ACT V

There is little left for us. Little time. But much irony.

We did discover they are not invulnerable. The destroyers that darkened our skies like a plague can be harmed. But we have no way to deliver the hurt.

We have the knowledge, but not the means. And so this is our legacy. In subspace, they cannot use their shields. And into subspace they can be tracked.


In a desperate attempt to stop the Shivans from following them, the Ancients tried to blow up a node by battling the Shivans inside it (so heroism and self-sacrifice and stuff); according to the FSRefBible they believed that this would collapse a node. However, it didn't work. And even an unshielded Lucifer was too much for the remaining Ancients to handle. They ended up in Altair together with the Lucifer (possibly an Ancient capship exploding collapsed the node). They store their records somewhere safe (a crash-landed ship?) on Altair IV...
and that's where the record ends. What finally happened to them? No-one will ever know. However, Altair IV does show signs of bombing by the Lucifer.

_____________________________

However, there are a couple problems with this interpretation:
- Altair IV seems to have been a rather big Ancient colony IIRC, not just something they stumbled upon
- What with the Vasudans?


So, what's your take on it?
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