[Cosmosdex] The Universal Encyclopedia



The Specific planet

“We don't talk about Tenalp.” — Bob

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Dominant Residents: Specifics (Generic)

Fauna: Horse, Blood Mantis, Agrivyrn
Weather: See Special

Danger Level: High
Purpose: Headquarters of the destruction of generic culture

Original Creator: Gold

Physical Description

Because Tenalp is tidally locked to its star, the planet is divided starkly into two halves. The side of the planet that faces the star is locked in eternal daylight, extreme heat, and is mostly a desert wasteland. The side that faces away from the star, on the other hand, faces permanent night, dangerous cold, and has a massive glacier at its heart. In between the two is a region with habitable temperatures, but even this area is ravaged by extreme winds as the heat from the hot side unceasingly attempts to flow into the cold side.

The settlements that exist on Tenalp are remarkably varied in appearance, but are home almost exclusively to specifics, generics who reject generic culture and make efforts to live as differently as possible from one another and regular generics. As such, these settlements are designed exceptionally unusually, making every effort possible to look different -- no two buildings are remotely similar. Considering that these places need to be built to survive extreme heat, extreme cold, or extreme winds, most designs must also be built with functionality in mind, and specific culture dictates that no two designs can be the same -- leading to some very creative innovations.


The generics once sought to expand their galactic empire, finding uninhabited worlds with ideal climates to be converted to generic Planets. One such planet was identified in a relatively unknown system, and the generics did as they usually do, sending massive ships full of generic citizens to colonize the planet and make it identical to all of the others.

However, in an infamous mistake, the leader of this colonizing expedition confused the chosen planet with another, close-by one in its system that looked similar. Moreover, while the planet that the generics had initially been planned to colonize was ideal for making a civilization, the planet that they landed on was anything but.

As soon as the mistake was realized, efforts were made to rescue the trapped generics, but the wind, heat, or cold of the areas that the fleet had landed in made such a rescue effort impossible, and they were instead left to die.

Many of the trapped generics -- with the instructions in their guidebooks utterly useless, and with no leadership to tell them what to do -- did just that, perishing within days (as was the generic thing to do in such a situation). However, some generics, faced with a choice between violating the principles that had guided their entire lives and death, chose survival.

To survive on such a planet required quite a bit of thinking outside of the box and innovation, as the generics faced very hostile weather conditions that would turn away almost every colonist and that would kill the trapped generics within days if they couldn't find solutions. A few of the generic managed to pull through, transforming their ships into climate controlled spaces that could allow them to survive, and eventually expanding to be able to create self-sustaining cities that could withstand the planet's very hostile conditions.

The generics that survived this ordeal came to a realization. They realized that generic society did not exist to enrich and protect every citizen as they had thought but to oppress and restrict generics from realizing their full potential. The rules and regulations that had controlled their whole lives were not truly the best ways to do things, but instead a way to keep the typical citizen compliant and in line, protecting those who were in power. So from that moment on, these generics -- now full "specifics," with their own personalities and differences -- committed to free their comrades who were still trapped by that restrictive society, ultimately aiming for the complete destruction of typical generic culture. Their planet, turning typical generic ideology completely backwards, became known as Tenalp.

Tenalp has presented a thorn in the side of generic society from the moment it was chosen as a landing site.


The Inferno: The hot side of the planet. The Inferno is mostly desert, with almost no water; nearly all of it was carried to the cold side long ago by the Inferno's hot winds. Farming here is close to impossible due to both the lack of water and the tendency for any plant that grows to erupt in flames from the heat. Specifics who live here live in communities designed to stay habitable in ridiculous heat, harvest water, and grow food using underground reservoirs. The underground also serves as a means of travel between the Inferno and the Wind Belt, as traveling on the surface in the Inferno's heat would be close to impossible to survive.

Wind Belt: The sky of the Wind Belt is beautiful, as the sun travels endlessly in circles around the horizon, creating an eternal dawn. As its name implies, however, the area's very high winds make landing very dangerous. Nonetheless, it is the most survivable of the planet's three zones, with relatively reasonable temperatures and even some animals that are sturdy enough not to be swept away. Specific settlements in the Wind Belt aim to provide protection from the winds and an environment in which to easily farm. This protection is critical, as if one is not tethered to something, they will end up carried by the wind to the cold side, to be frozen forever unless they are lucky enough to be swept into a settlement. As a result, specifics here tend to stay inside their buildings, only venturing outside to trade with visitors or for absolutely essential work.

The Deep Freeze: The edges of the deep freeze are only somewhat cold and are made more livable by warmer winds from the Wind Belt. The center, on the other hand, is just an enormous block of ice. Specifics in the Deep Freeze survive mostly off of trade with the Wind Belt, exporting ice -- the planet's most reliable source of water -- in exchange for the food that cannot be grown in the area's ridiculous cold. While temperature or wind make traveling on the surface in both the Inferno and the Wind Belt complicated, any vehicle that can produce lots of heat makes travel through the warmer parts of the Deep Freeze very reasonable. The settlements here are much less isolated from one another than the ones in either of the planet's other areas are.


Tidally Locked: Due to a galactic phenomenon known as "tidal locking," the same side of this planet always faces its star. This means that one area of the planet is locked in eternal day, with scorching temperatures, while the other side is locked in an eternal night and is mostly frozen.


• The specifics that live here aim to live life as un-generically as possible, making efforts to do things in new ways and to embrace their differences. This ideology is sometimes taken to an absurd extent, with entire homes being torn down because they were too similar to existing ones. Specifics here are also committed to converting as many regular generics to their way of life as possible, whether by wiring propaganda to the many Planets of the universe or by kidnapping and brainwashing generics en masse. Whether or not the irony has been noticed by them yet is unknown.

• The Deep Freeze was not able to trade with the Wind Belt for quite a while, and for this reason, the area has a rich history of cannibalism -- the generics that crash landed there were initially only able to subsist off of other, dead generics that were swept there by the winds. Fascinatingly, cannibalism has not only remained legal on Tenalp, but it is treasured as just another difference that sets the specifics apart from one another and regular generics.

• While Tenalp's weather is extremely inhospitable, specifics are extremely friendly to outsiders, viewing them as potential allies in the fight against generic society. Outsiders are typically given gifts and are allowed to live among the specifics with few questions asked, at least as long as they are willing to live according to their code of being as unique as possible.

• Notails consider Tenalp to be a scientific experiment and place it under the protection accorded to such experiments. There are rumors that an X-class intentionally caused the generic colony fleet to land on the wrong planet to see what would happen. Because the specifics consider landing on this planet to have been a blessing, efforts have been made to find this X-class and thank them.

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