Although Strondovarian culture is dominated by a singular idea of what it means to be “Strondovarian Culture” there are, in fact, still different groups that divide the population among their number. These groups, called Ve, hold a place in society similar to that of national identities for humanity, but without being tied to any physical place. Instead, your membership in one of these groups is based on your ideals and traditions, so in a way it could be considered closer to a religion. That said, the word “Ve” would more literally translate to English as “community” or “team” so let’s go with those terms.
There are dozens of Ve recognized by the Knowledge Banks, but we’ll just take a look at a few, to get a sampling of what they offer.
- Ve Tillayath: Currently the largest of the Strondo nations, Ve Tillayath is the dominant force in Strondovarian politics. Governed by a supposedly-just committee of elected elders, Ve Tillayath exerts pressure on all the other nations to keep in line.
- Ve Marbava: An ancient culture, probably the oldest still-extant nation of Gurx, Ve Marbava doesn’t have the cultural cachet you might think their history would merit. Some of the other nations even claim they’re coasting off their former triumphs.
- Ve Reliss: Though not as old as Ve Marbava, Ve Reliss was once much larger than now, and the populace of today revels in its former glory with lots of traditions and rituals that date back to distant history.
- Ve Pwoora: Ve Pwoora is ruled by cultish dictatorship and prefers to keep its populace secluded from the rest of the world whenever possible, which does connect them more to individual physical territory than most other nations. It is a crime among them for the low-ranking to even access the Knowledge Bank. As such, large numbers of their people are unimportant in the eyes of the rest of the world, which means nobody cares that their rulers force them to work in the Gurxian equivalent of sweatshops and slave conditions.
- Ve Auonaooa: One of the youngest nations, Ve Auonaooa was first formed on a colony world in a different stellar system, intending to have a society that did things differently. Over time, to become more accepted as valid by other nations, their mores have drifted more in keeping with the rest, though they still retain a reputation for being “odd”.
- Ve Okoliok: Attempting to gain more prowess among the nations, Ve Okoliok accepts any worthy Strondo who seeks to join, and actively reaches out to notable individuals and offers them incentives to join. Many other nations consider this gauche, but if it pays off in the end, it could be worth it.
- Ve Obiss: While largely a standard Strondo nation that follows along the accepted norms, Ve Obiss has an interesting practice that might be likened to knighthoods from medieval Earth, except their equivalent of “knights” pilot combat mechs and fight in space battles. But otherwise, it’s a standard Strondo nation.
- Ve Gleaudaran: While the people of Ve Gleaudaran still buy into the Strondovarian ideals that wealth and worth are defined by fame and notoriety, they try to be more egalitarian about it. They work for the fame and notoriety of their nation, not for themselves. Sadly, they’re not one of the more successful nations within Strondo culture so far.