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LTFC - February 2016 - Mining Edition

Take part in the discussion --> here
Only submissions in this thread, please.


Welcome to the first edition of the revived Limit Theory Fan Contest! I'll start by giving a little history.

A year and a half ago, a man going by the name of Katorone started up the first Limit Theory Fan Contest, which grew to be a rather incredible thing! A great many people took part and began honing their skills in anticipation of being a prizewinner. After a month, when everyone had enough time to turn in their submissions, a panel of judges would judge the entries. Others would offer prizes - usually in the form of redeemable Steam and GoG codes.

Unfortunately, Katorone regrettably disappeared from the forums a little over a year ago. We all miss him terribly, and we've left the Limit Theory Fan Contest open in case he might return, but at this point it doesn't seem like he will. I am therefore taking up the reins myself, and we'll see what we can accomplish in his stead. :) I'd like to be able to judge the last contest, and if we can get ahold of the judges from the first one, we'll do so. I'm going to end up as a judge myself in Katorone's place; unfortunately, we probably won't be able to offer prizes for those.

Now that all that's out of the way, welcome to the fourth edition of the Limit Theory Fan Contest! This month's edition will be about Mining/Resource Gathering. There's quite a bit that can be done as far as this goes. Everyone can make as many admissions as they like, but only one can be the "official" admission by which you are judged.

This contest will have 3 prizes for the top three submissions, and each entrant can only win one prize (if indeed there are prizes).

The objective: Create art about Limit Theory.
This could be in written form as a story, lore, or a detailed idea for a mod. It could be visual like a gif, photoshop or video. Or even audio... Anyone up for a bit of stand-up about Limit Theory?
These are just a few ideas off the top of my head, but I'm sure you guys can think of a lot more. It is fine to use other games' assets in your submissions.
Rule of thumb: "Does it spotlight Limit Theory?".

Confirmed prizes:
  • Borderlands 2 GOTY Edition, courtesy of Victor Tombs
  • Contagion, courtesy of Cha0zz
  • Civilization: Beyond Earth, courtesy of HowSerendipitous

The rules:
  • The artwork needs to be about Limit Theory per the objective.
  • Everybody is free to enter but can only submit one entry to the contest. You are free to change or replace your submission for as long as the contest is open.
  • If you have submitted more than one work, you need to be very clear about which one you're entering. If there is any doubt, the latest entry in the forum thread will be judged.
  • All contest submissions have to be made as a reply to this thread.
  • Submitting a prize does not exclude you from having a submission scored.
  • Judges are not barred from making a submission themselves, but their submissions can't be scored.
  • The contest will be open to new submissions until Monday, February 29th, 23:59 GMT.
  • Discussion about this contest or submissions can happen here.
  • Any prizes are yours to do whatever you want with them. You can even give the prize to someone else if you'd like, and they don't have to be from this forum.
Note: if you're using another site to host content, make sure the title and comment displays that it's part of a contest submission.
This only to avoid future googlers from becoming confused when looking for official content.

Our jury of three people will judge the submissions based on the following criteria:
  • Originality: 30%
  • Aesthetic: 25%
  • Details: 10%
  • X factor: 20%
  • Realism according to the LT universe: 15%
Have a question? Send me a PM! || I have a Patreon page up for REKT now! || People talking in IRC over the past two hours: Image

Re: LTFC - January 2016 - Mining Edition

Mining troubles

He spat out the blood from his throbbing mouth, as he wiped at his chin. his rage flailed passed the overloads, and he was back up on his feet.

"I thought i told you to Get Back Sirr... am i going to have to use force" the armored man said, shouldering his rail rifle. the show of the gun cooled his boiling rage to a more moderate temperature.
"No... no sir... i was just trying to get back to me ship. Designation Beck Ewvish" he said, still facing the guard and backing away several paces. his ship had been confiscated as soon as his transfer beams ran red, spewing their lines across space to split the asteroid and revealing the hidden ship.
"Alright... ill'e ask my command, and int turn they'll ask the local government. you will be contacted with further instructions." the guard said, making no move to lower his weapon. he looked like the usual military grunt with his buzz cut and blank face.
"See that it it mate. for your sake..." the last part, he said under his breath as he turned to leave the station's docking section.

Almost immediately after he sat down to have a meal in the mess hall, his comm buzzed. he lifted it up, and his eyes scrolled through the lines of text. his rage roiled around his mind at first, then cooled almost immediately. his ship would be confiscated by the Sec Corp, but he would be compensated with a million credit transfer.

his immediate response was to buy the biggest rig and ram it up the ore shoot of the nearest Sec Corp capital ship, but his clearance wasn't high enough to pilot even a military fighter, let alone a corvette.
"I guess ill'e get to that" he mumbled to himself as a long term plan formed in his mind. to eventually have a Fleet that can either crush Corp Sec, or to rush their research facility and find out answers. He would burn that bridge when he comes to that.

Dakota W
There is no peace, only passion

Re: LTFC - January 2016 - Mining Edition

Data Mining

An uneasy silence followed each bright flash that rippled off of the shield membrane around the ship. her uneasiness was massively amplified when she glanced behind her. the veteran troops that were hitching a ride in her mining vessel made her confidence in the mission's success, undetermined.

the troopers were all much older than the usual grunts which made a statement by its self, they were the weathered veteran space marines. that fact was belied by another series. the commander, a grey bearded fellow, had his chin dipped below his blast plated armor. Was he actually napping? she asked herself. one of them was apparently singing a sort of lullaby, one was painting her nails, one was reading a paper book, and one staring out the window like he was going on a long car ride with his family with his headphones on.

She looked forward again, her shoulders hunched in tension. who did they think she was? Han Solo? she thought.
Five seconds to Drop" she called over the comm system, and their attitudes and activities didn't shift in the slightest. her confusion was complete. Either they were too good to care, or were planning something, or absolutely insane which was probably more apt for such veterans that they had more than likely snapped under the pressure of the job. she began doubting the success of the mission to come.

The rear cargo door dropped, clanging to the deck of the capital ship. the helmets of the troopers were already on faster than she could blink, their extra curricular activities now stored in their personal packs and their full EVA combat suites were sealed tight. they were already in the process of jumping from the open cargo hatch to the top of the unsuspecting capital research vessel and cutting their way through with the six person attachable docking ring.

The machine's magnetic seals locked onto the vessel, and she aimed one of the massive mining beam into the glowing ring around the docking ring and fired. the beam caught and melded with the glow, warming up the hull of the ship it was attached to. the distinctive sizzling sound hissed from the ring, the sound reverberating off of the microscopic melted hull pieces. the sound was followed by louder hissing from escaping air. she was sorry for what she had to do, all the suffocating people inside the section of the ship, slowly freezing and their blood losing its pressure to keep its form.

A popping sound followed the dimming of the hiss, and the hatch was firmly in place. the marines each exchanged a secret handshake with the commander, each one different from the last, as they dropped down into the newly melted hole. behind their commander, the hatch's door slid shut and sealed the atmosphere inside.
she didn't stay to look or participate. instead her ramp was up, and her mining probes primed. the whole drop only took upwards of three seconds, so the ship's sensor crew wouldn't know what hit them until the boarding crew took control of their comms, engine room, then the entire ship, Her boss Beck Ewvish apparently had a pretty nasty score to settle with Sec Corp's research division.

Her craft boosted off into the distance, and began launching its probe payload into the unsuspecting rocks of the asteroid belt. the boarding team didn't need her help because by the time she got back there, the ship would be completely de-fanged and clawed, crippled, and completely piloted by them. so for her, it was business as usual, transfer beam blazing into an asteroid heart and draining it of all its juicy resources. she smiled, and sent out the signal to the command ship waiting dormant in the furthest reaches of the belt.

"Mission Successfull"
There is no peace, only passion

Re: LTFC - January 2016 - Mining Edition


Edmon skillfully plied his ship next to the huge asteroid. His scanners had suggested that this was a rich source of platinum-group ores. One couldn’t check too many times, however, and Edmon launched a tiny prospector drone.
The drone’s link chirped happily, before it was launched violently into the rock by the ship’s drone tubes. Its harpoons dug deeply into the stone before springing open within, latching the donut-shaped craft firmly to the surface. A laser extended out of its “hole.” The laser cut effortlessly through the asteroid and deep into the core. Slowly, the laser head rotated in a complete circle. It retracted and was replaced by a robotic arm. The arm clamped down on the core sample, pulling it into range of the now-spinning wheels and analysis kit. The core sample was drawn in its entirety out of the ‘roid and scoured for information. Once the core floated free next to the prospector, the drone pulled its harpoons out and returned to its parent ship on cold-gas thrusters. The entire process had taken all of thirty seconds.
Edmon watched, fascinated by the process and by the data rolling in. Judging by the sample, a large portion of the ‘roid was ore, and much of this ore was rich in Pt-group metals. He ran the numbers in his head, and determined that this ‘roid might net him several payments on the expensive new cargo compactor. He pinged the ‘roid vigorously one more time, attempting to ascertain its structure. He grunted in satisfaction, plotted a crack, and anchored the ship to an appropriate point on the rock.
The Thresher II was no mere rockhopper. Armed with a quartet of formidable Stargouger-class mining lasers, the frigate-sized ship could attack even smallish dwarf planets and expect success. Additionally, it possessed both a pair of PDC coilgun turrets and a tiny defense drone for the occasional pirate. However, at the moment, these systems were idling. The Stargougers, on the other hand, were charging and unlimbering. Shields retracted from the barrels even as these barrels were extending. The heavy-duty turrets beneath them retracted their braces, popped out of the hull slightly, and rotated to bear on the huge lump of stone. Four capacitor banks charged, four sets of pumps began filling four crystals with energy. Four streams of photons bounced back and forth, recruiting more members from the excited matrices.
Four dielectric mirrors broke down.
Beams of hellfire, tuned to just the right frequency to burn through stone, melted channels into the asteroid. They converged deep within the rock, conspiring to cut a thin wedge out of the asteroid. This wedge was slowly pushed out by the force of the vaporised stone behind it. The slice of rock was itself burned to accelerate it back into the hole once it had enough of a run-up. Glass surfaces slid smoothly against one another, lubricated by tiny glass beads. The wedge drove deep into the cut like an axe, cracking the ‘roid nearly in two.
Meanwhile, the compactor’s tractor was largely idling, scooping up any tidbits of ore that squirted free from the incision. Suddenly, it ramped up as large lumps of stone and ore fragmented from the surface of the asteroid. The throb of the compactor began to climb to a low whine, complemented nicely by the rhythmic pulsations of the lasers. Edmon watched as the hold filled. Each scrap of ore was analyzed as it was brought in and catalogued neatly in a corner of the strange space within the hold.
When the low whine transformed into a persistent keening sound, Edmon knew it was time to return to the station. The keen corresponded to the beginning of a visual telltale. The compactor’s tractor faded from a healthy bluish tone to a bloody red hue. Pirates could see this from kilometers around. Edmon had determined through many years of observations that these pirates wouldn’t attack a ship as well-armed as this one until the compactor beam had become a deep crimson, unless they were desperate. He’d seen dozens of fat-bellied, thin-skinned miner ships gutted just as they turned away from their claims.
He didn’t plan to be one of these unlucky souls.
He shut off the lasers as the keen reached a particular pitch. The compactor vacuumed up the last bits of dust, then quieted. Its port on the ventral surface of the ship irised shut. Edmon untethered from the ‘roid, spun the ship round, and plotted a maneuvre that would take him to the Foundry, the massive station a few hundred megameters away. The slightly undersized (but very efficient) drive pushed the Thresher II forcefully towards the installation, even as the Stargougers folded back up behind their shields and locked in. Edmon grinned in satisfaction as he left the dense, pirate-infested cluster of ‘roids and rendezvoused with the mammoth form that could be seen even from this distance.

Re: LTFC - January 2016 - Mining Edition

A miner's tale - Official entry
In a remote region of space a trader and a miner meet to exchange a precious piece of cargo.

As the miner came to a halt he opened his trade dialog window and showed the trader what he had found.
“So, where'd you find this?” The trader asked suspiciously.

“In the pit.”

“Really? I've only heard that death resides there. Do you know what this is?”

“No, designs of some sort, something alien.”

“Well I'll take it from ya. How's 1200 credits sound?”

“1200 credits?! No way! I want 10,000 at the very least.” The trader exclaimed in a shocked and angry tone.

“Tell me more about how ya got it and I'll come up on the price.”

“Well you know the Belt; full of asteroids and guarded by pirates. Many minters like myself risk our lives to make a living and possibly hit it rich. Well, anyways, you and I both know that the pit is shrouded in mystery. With all the rumors around about how that asteroid contains a trove of ancient alien technologies and blueprints. I knew that if I could just make it past the pirates I could bypass any defenses in there, and determine what it contains.”

The trader, was greatly intrigued. “So, what'd ya use? A few mining lasers and a couple of drones? I don't see weapons on your ship.”

The miner smiled to himself smugly. “You see? That's the problem. Everyone thinks they can just blast their way into the pit. The fact is that every ship that has tried mining in there has also had weapons to deal with the pirates. My approach was different. I thought “what if the lore about the advanced aliens, the Limit Theorists, was true?” Then it occurred to me that in every legend about advanced civilizations there was a common theme of never attacking an enemy directly. The main way they seemed to achieve this was through defensive traps. So, I created a plan. By using the latest stealth technology I was able to infiltrate the Belt and make a heading towards the Pit. Unfortunately, on the way there my cloak failed and I was spotted by several pirates. They chased me to the edge of the pit, shooting at me the whole way. But when I began to enter the shadow of the asteroid their firing ceased.”

“Really? They just let you go in there without pursuing you?”

“Yes, and the reason became apparent as soon as I turned the first corner. But for the rest of the story you pay me twice my original asking price.”

“20,000c eh, well, alright. You have yourself a deal.”

As I ventured deeper into the Pit I began coming across tens of ships from various eras. Some with crumpled cockpits, others with destroyed engines. It was a spooky sight to behold. One by one I passed each ship. Hoping that I didn't somehow activate the security measures. Which were undoubtedly embedded into the walls. Eventually though, I reached the end of the twisting cavern. It was there that I found an old cargo pod on the ground. I activated my drones and had them bring it to my ship. After securing the pod in my cargo bays I gathered up my drones and exited that death hole as quickly as I could. Once out of the Belt I contacted you and here we are.”

“Here's the 10,000 for the item, and the additional 10,000 for the story.” The trader said contently.

The transfer was made and the two ships went on their separate ways. Over time the story was retold about the brave miner who entered the pit and returned to share the tale. New scrutiny was put on the ancient legends and the secrets of the ancient civilization were eventually discovered.

Re: LTFC - January 2016 - Mining Edition

Thank you everybody who participated, and thank you jury members!

The first place winner is: CSE, for his entry CSE's Mining Comic - with a score of 73.33!
The second and third place winners are: The runner ups are (in order of submission):
Comments of the jury in order of submission:
  • I find the idea of a group of miners accidentally mining an asteroid base to be highly amusing! It's actually not something I've ever thought about before. Well done! The colors do look a bit washed out, but I think that's the fault of the software you're using; could probably be fixed with a little post-processing.
  • This comic is pretty sweet, quite original and they have a very interesting old school feel to them, they almost remind me of an old Polaroid so I feel this is a page from an old comic in someones attic. The idea the miners have stumbled across a base is brilliant, but with only three panels it is hard to bring more emotion into it. This is where I feel the comic lacks.
  • A slightly thrilling tale of an ace infiltration team, nice. My kind of job, however though this story is well executed it falls short of the theme.
  • The amount of detail in this story is excellent, but I occasionally found myself confused about what was going on. Nevertheless, it's an excellent example of how the big black is a harsh mistress.
  • I love the little trucks! The amount of detail you put into this scene is outstanding. Of course I did have to take a few points off because I doubt this will ever happen in LT... but I really, really wish it would. I'd sit for days on a planet just watching little trucks drive around.
  • Though a very interesting and original idea,in relation to LT this falls short. An amazing piece either way and quite possibly my personal favorite.
  • An interesting read, though painfully detailed. The small details laid out are impressive, though I was lost a couple times in the story. Focus more on the big picture, you can tell a good story without so many smaller details. Leave those to the imagination of the reader!
  • A great demonstration and description of the mining process! Unfortunately it doesn't quite stand well as a story; it would probably work better as technical documentation. You did amazingly well with the level of detail and realism to LT, though!
  • It took me a moment to realize those were drones, but once I had, it all made sense. I hope to come across something like this in LT. Great work on the ship's armor plating! I wonder how far back it set the person that once owned it when it was destroyed.
  • This interpretation of drones salvaging the wreck of some poor soul's pride is a sight to behold, though last minute this scene feels quite believable towards what reclaiming the treasures of the dead might be like in LT. Good job.
  • This scene is extraordinary and the little side story really puts the whole thing into perspective. I'm not sure if Dan was going for a different style or was rushed but it feels like a quick mock up for concept art rather than a finished piece. Comparing to his previous work this feels lacking.
  • While aesthetically beautiful, I feel this is slightly dry on the detail side, but I like the overall scene; while somewhat generic, it also feels compelling.
  • A sweet read about a tactical miner, who would have thought? A few small details irked me, an extra 10K cred for the rest of a story? That trader loves to throw money around. Lost track of who was talking at times. Nice read.
  • The lack of tags made this mildly difficult to follow at first; it might help to occasionally mention your primary character doing something while he talks: sipping coffee or something similar. Regardless of that, it was a well-plotted tale that made me want to know more about the universe you had created it in.
A detailed overview of all scores can be found here.

Prizes will be handled now in the comments thread! CSE, you're first up with a choice between Borderlands 2 GOTY, Contagion, and Civilization: Beyond Earth. Thank you again to the jury and thank you to everyone who participated!
Have a question? Send me a PM! || I have a Patreon page up for REKT now! || People talking in IRC over the past two hours: Image

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