Alpha Centauri Wiki

The substructure of the universe regresses infinitely towards smaller and smaller components. Behind atoms, we find electrons, and behind electrons, quarks. Each layer unraveled reveals new secrets, but also new mysteries.
~ Academician Prokhor Zakharov on For I Have Tasted The Fruit

University of Planet is a Alpha Centauri faction.

Description[ | ]

The University is completely dedicated to research and the free exchange of information. They are rumored to sometimes put the pursuit of knowledge ahead of ethics. They start the game with the Information Networks technology and one additional bonus technology. Each University base receives a free Network Node when founded. The University’s research progresses quickly, but their open-access philosophy makes them susceptible to attacks by covert "Probe Teams", while their callous elitism can easily lead to unrest among the Workers.

History[ | ]

In the 2050s, Prokhor Zakharov was perhaps the most renowned scientist on Earth, famous for groundbreaking work in both high-energy physics and artificial intelligence. Within his native Russia, he was a particularly influential figure, adept at winning support from politicians for his scientific and engineering projects. As such, he was one of the world leaders who first proposed the Unity project, and did much to gain massive Russian support for the starship's construction. Zakharov had a great deal of control over the project from the beginning, and easily won the position of Chief Science Officer. Zakharov also sat on the final crew selection boards, where he was able to manipulate the process so that a substantial portion of the crew owed their positions to his direct or indirect patronage. This gave him a ready-made group of followers when the starship entered its final crisis. The engineers and many of the scientific crew served him loyally during the attempt to repair the ship, and many of them followed him to Planet. After Planetfall, they founded the University of Planet, continuing to support Zakharov's obsession with ferreting out the secrets of the universe.

Beliefs[ | ]

The University is devoted to rational, scientific inquiry - with Zakharov defining "rational" and "scientific", of course. Zakharov and his followers value a deep understanding of the physical universe and the mastery of physical systems that comes from such understanding. They are impatient with metaphysical philosophy and have no use at all for spiritual or religious ideas. This approach sometimes causes them to ignore ethical considerations in their pursuit of knowledge.

The University does make some ethical commitments. Intellectual honesty - the ability to argue logically and reach conclusions based only on empirical evidence - is paramount. The University also supports the free flow of information, avoiding secrecy and falsehood at all costs.

Relations With Other Factions[ | ]

Prokhor Zakharov is primarily interested in being left alone and will coexist happily with other factions so long as they do not impinge on the University's interests. His best natural ally is probably the Consciousness, which shares the University's devotion to the advancement of knowledge. The University tends to be hostile toward factions that are driven by "religious" ideologies. Enmity with the Lord's Believers is particularly bitter, although Zakharov is also disdainful of the Gaians and the Planet Cult.

Strengths[ | ]

The University surpasses every other faction in the business of scientific innovation. From the time immediately after Planetfall, they have the best computers, sensors, and laboratory equipment. Their ideology makes them dedicated and honest researchers.

University citizens are also superb engineers, good at putting their scientific discoveries to practical use. They are likely to be talented gadgeteers, improvising engineering solutions to new problems on the fly.

Weaknesses[ | ]

The University maintains an open society, sharing information freely within the faction and with other factions. This stance is integral to their scientific endeavors, but it can also be a vulnerability. Spies and saboteurs from other factions often have an easy time penetrating University security.

The University's dedication to rational inquiry, even at the cost of ignoring ethics, can often lead to social unrest. This is particularly acute among the University's "underclass": the ordinary citizens who have no scientific talent or duties. Colonists who would be valued members of other factions are considered little more than drones here, and they have all the drone's resentment of their ruling elite.

Lifestyle[ | ]

The University has established a society centered around the academic culture of old Earth. Senior academicians control the state, setting policy and performing day-to-day administrative chores. Lesser academicians do most of the teaching and oversight of research. Students do most of the actual work of research. Finally, there is a large class of non-academics who do support work, growing the food, obtaining the resources, and manufacturing and maintaining the equipment needed by the academic elite.

Living spaces on University bases are comfortable but not luxurious. Economic surpluses are normally dedicated to laboratory or manufacturing facilities, not to luxuries for the elite. Even "non-academic" citizens receive sufficient living space, food, and entertainment. Class distinctions in University society tend to be social, not economic (although they are no less strong for that).

The University's government is democratic, but only among the academic class - and there is a strict hierarchy even there. The higher social classes are theoretically open to anyone, but a citizen who wants to reach the rank of full Academician must go through years of strenuous and intellectually demanding work. Candidates must earn advanced degrees, perform well as research and teaching assistants, publish original results, navigate the dangers of academic politics, and earn tenure.

Even an Academician's field of expertise can affect his social standing. Physicists and computer scientists have the most prestige and influence, with pure mathematicians following close behind. Experts in the social sciences are low in the pecking order, and students of the humanities are at the bottom.

Citizens[ | ]

The University has a diverse society which makes use of a wide variety of skill sets. However, all of the faction's children receive rudimentary training in the sciences. Even an ordinary mechanic or laborer is likely to have moderate levels of skills such as Computer Operation, Computer Programming, Mathematics, and Research. , Elite faction members will often have Code of Honor (Scientist's). Many will have some level of Administrative Rank.

Strategies[ | ]

The University are rational minded, befitting the Research orientated Original faction (before the Cyborgs and Hackers showed up). With a boost into science, along with the right secret projects, they have a shout in becoming the most technological advanced faction in the game, using said tech for war or for Ascension.

That said, they are vulnerable to Probe Teams from other factions, most noticeable being the Lord's Believers, Cyborgs and to a greater extent, the Data Angels. If left unchallenged, rival faction can be on equal ground. A good player knowledgeable of its strengths and weakness should include defensive Teams in order to combat them.

Colony names[ | ]

Land[ | ]

Some of the names were incorrectly transliterated from Cyrillic and were corrected. Translations and Cyrillic variants are provided for convenience.
  • University Base
  • Academy Park
  • Lab Three
  • Library of Planet
  • Planetary Archives
  • Razvitia - Progress Base (Развития)
  • Cosmograd (Космоград)
  • Budushii Dvor (Будущий Двор, Future Yard)
  • Tsiolkovsky Institute
  • Mendelev College
  • Nauka Science Center (Наука)
  • Zarya - Sunrise (Заря)
  • Nadezjda - Hope (Надежда)
  • Academgorodok (Академгородок, lit. Academy Town; refers to a science complex funded by the Russian Academy of Sciences)
  • Koppernigk Observatory (Copernicus Observatory)
  • Svobodny - Free Base (Свободны)
  • Zvezdny Gorodok (Звездный Городок, Star City)
  • Baikonur
  • Climactic Research
  • Monitoring Station
  • Buran Prospect
  • Mir Lab (Мир)
  • Relativity School
  • Pavlov Biolab
  • Lomonosov Park
  • Korolev Center
  • Gagarin Memorial
  • New Arzamas (Новый Арзамас)
  • Otkrietia - Discoveries (Открытия)
  • Zoloto - Gold (Золото)
  • Edinstvo - Unity (Единство)

Sea[ | ]

  • The Marine Institute
  • Marine Biology Lab
  • Oceanographic Lab
  • Hydrothermal Institute
  • Deep Sea Lab