Thomas Malicet

Game & Web Developer

Carminopsidia Logo

2006 _ Carminopsidia, an improved text-based flash RPG.

2006 - Carminopsidia is an early beta of a browser game, which puts you in the shoes of a character just landed on Mars where he expects to find a better place. But things are not as easy as they seem; everyone strives for a much sought-after place in the sun without always succeeding.
When you join the game, you have to decide upon your avatar's age (between 15 and 75 years old) and sex (man or woman).
Your character has 4 features: charisma, energy, health and intelligence, which he can enhance through his actions. Functionalities are at his disposal to improve his game comfort and to help him along the way: chat canal, friend list, interactive city map, mail sending and receiving.

Basic building and layout. With chat, actions, movements...

Carminopsidia includes:

A map of underground buildings

I imagined this Flash MMORPG when I felt it could be interesting to go back to the roots of role-play. The chief idea was to create an immersion process that would leave a lot of room to imagination, the aim being to extend development as much as possible and to provide a maximum freedom of movement.

"Thanks to a contest, you have won an tremendous one-way trip to Mars and a permanent visa. This is the year 2137; it's time for you to pack."

Your profile card

1.The story
a. In the beginning
2075, the Uberus asteroid is about to collide with the South pole of Mars. The impact being planned a month beforehand, a choice has to be made.
The first option, supported by the Ministry of Defence, is to divert the asteroid, by using rockets, and to avoid the crash.
Still, it is the second choice, advocated by scientists, which is finally carried out. Based upon the calculation of both mass and course of the asteroid, it consists in setting free a massive quantity of CO2 and steam: such elements will increase dramatically the greenhouse effect and lead to global warming, which will in turn raise the atmospheric pressure and allow for plantations and an increased oxygen rate, in other words, for the first steps of Mars terraforming.
All colonization plans of Mars, which had been left aside, come back to the fore. The first inhabitable units land in 2114; 4 years go by before the units needed for a semi-autonomy are set and before the activities essential to daily life are eventually represented.

Public Transportation

b. Today
With the advent of Mars City (2122), only those financially privileged had been able to afford the trip, driven by the hope to build a better world. But very soon, the workforce became scarce in the harder sectors. It had therefore to be imported from the Earth and a new kind of slavery, controlled by the most wealthy, appeared on Mars.
Those who were too poor to afford the return journey were totally subjugated to an exploitation of their physical capabilities. Several countries even made the most of the situation by launching "cleaning operations" on their territory. Cargos to Mars City were crammed with political prisoners, protesters, former inmates, repeat offenders and stowaways? Due to the "administrative perturbations" linked to the colonization of a new planet, passengers' identities were indeed missing most of the time.
Actually, it was the state the passenger originated from that bought him the ticket to Mars along with a supplement to keep him anonymous. His papers and goods were seized and his identity erased from all data bases where it might be found. The individual was then deemed as never having existed.

Such purging was very quickly denounced by many opposition parties and by Human Rights associations ?estimated over 150 in 2021, less than 40 remain today? but the actions they took to counter the phenomenon were soon slowed down or stopped by the many losses that occurred among their teams.

After the settlement in 2118 and various utopian regimes, the United Nations regained control over the red planet last year, on March 27th, 2136.
They imposed regulations to control immigration. Advocating a voluntary system, they set up a contest, awarding the winners with a trip to Mars along with an accommodation and a job there. The aim being to repopulate the planet with willful, motivated citizens so as to reinstate a balance and to create a strong State. Unfortunately, beneath this honorable fa├žade, the Mars Rehabilitation Program (MRP) does not live up to the hopes it gave rise to.
If a permanent visa is indeed granted to anyone, the return ticket remains at the expense of the traveler who, once arrived on Mars, is no longer deemed as an Earthman. His identity is gradually erased; he becomes solely bound to Mars and his only hope is to get a visa for the Earth against a huge amount of money.

The contest is open to all and, unless you suffer a medical contra-indication, you are 100% likely to win.

Newspaper

c. Life on Mars
Mars is currently governed by a self-proclaimed mayor. Having set foot with the first settlement wave, his political acts clearly advantage the well-off, encourage discrimination and denouncements and view Mars mainly as a new economical power.
Hoping to turn it into a serious competitor for the Earth, he maintains for the time being a close relationship with the latter and seeks diplomatic ways to obtain trust from the governments of its wealthier states.
Business on the red planet being currently regulated by the United Nations, a few Martians have demanded independence and the creation of their own government. For a single Mars representative is seating in the United Nation parliament and many decisions are made without taking into account the local problems and difficulties linked to extraterrestrial life.

Pick a job

2. Daily life
a. Politics
Two Martian groups claim their status as political parties. Formerly deemed illegal, they are now tolerated and remain optimistic as to the establishment of seats, political programs and election polls.
While supporting the current mayor, the party set up by the first settlers nonetheless wishes to organize an election in order to have a majority appointed mayor. Not quite confident in their victory, they would rather make the vote a prerogative for a narrow caste of citizens.
To them Mars appears as a new, flawless, capitalistic democracy ruled by the principles of free enterprise and free trade. Their strength lies in their platforms' emphasis on topics such as "work for all" promises and personal success. They count on the third immigration wave to lure the unemployed originating from the Earth.

The other party gathers a large number of activists, idealists and freedom fighters.
Originating from the second immigration wave, they have manage to break away from the toiling masses and believe in their power to create a world that would live up to their expectations. Calling themselves a populist movement, they potentially represent the largest party on Mars. Struck by intense repression over the last few years, few of them remain and many Martians still think supporting them can be dangerous. In spite of the situation, they hope to achieve a rallying large enough to voice and impose their ideology. Initially close to extremist groups, they are now trying to get rid of that image and to become legal.

As for extremist movements, they are precluded and hunt down. Their members are mainly heirs of political parties of the Earth such as right and left-wing extremists, religious fundamentalists and environmentalists.
The idea of racism bearing no legitimacy on Mars, all ideologies stemming from it are forbidden. So are the notions of conservatism, traditionalism and any other idea at odds with the principles of scientific, technological and social progress.
In order to maintain a lay state, political clusters exhibiting their belonging to a religion are forbidden. Yet, religious belief and practice are allowed in the individual private sphere. Green parties are banned from Mars so as to prevent industrial growth from slowing down.

b. Architecture
The Martian atmosphere is not suitable for humans., although making it so is a long-term project upon which many scientists are working. In this environment, primarily made of CO2, all living species have to evolve in buildings specially equipped with oxygenation and pressurization systems. Any excursion outside the infrastructure requires heavy, expensive equipments. Erecting new buildings is a tricky venture, although the Martian industry managed to make house building automatic.
The necessary materials, which are produced in factories, are assembled outside by automated engines and connected to the city's oxygenation system. As a result the aboveground architecture is 100% apartment buildings.
The underground architecture offers cheaper housing. Originally dedicated to transportation means and industrial production, this zone was not considered as habitable by humans when Mars was first colonized. Yet, at present, 60% of housing are situated below ground level. Although they are deprived of windows and built within a very limited space, they give the inhabitants a comparatively higher freedom of movement. Criminality rates are very high there, owing to overpopulation, and the police's range of action is next to nothing.

c. Transportation
The two main transport options in the City are either going on foot or using the underground. Citizens who live in the aboveground buildings have to use the underground passageway. Some transfers from one building to another are possible thanks to tunnels but they remain very rare.

d. Communication Tools
A Pager system is available from various shops. A large part of architecture being underground and constituted of metal, mobile phones do not operate.

e. Retail
As many Martians have set up their activity in their own homes, shops are distributed rather evenly across the city. There is no actual retail zone in Mars City.

f. Industry
Industry is divided into two large categories: on the one hand, factories processing products relying on raw materials from the Earth and, on the other hand, manufacturing companies relying on Martian materials and resources.