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DeteledSawI

Xenoarcheology - What's it like?

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So, I want to try to get into Xenoarcheology, and there's two things I'm trying to find out.

1. What's it like? Can somebody describe it to me?

2. What kind of alien artifacts are we looking at here? Skrell? Mystery artifacts?

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As far as I can tell xenoarcheology is mostly about finding fossils or whats described as "Major Artifacts". Major artifacts are typically what you'll want to find, since fossils and most handheld artifacts don't actually do anything. You'll probably spend around 15-40 minutes with an ore detector set to "Major Artifact" before finding one, these can range anywhere from a cloning pod that spawns a variety of mobs like corgis, cows, greimorian workers, xenomorph hunters and such, to "Anomalies" that have randomly generated effects with different trigger mechanisms, such as being put in an only nitrogen atmosphere and it starts emitting radiation in a 7 tile radius, to needing to pour sulfuric acid onto it in order for it to transmit (mechanically insignificant) good thoughts to your character, to needing to simply be touched in order to charge batteries, or heal robots. You can also engage in an optional side event where you use a core sampler to take a sample of an artifact location and determine both what its made of, and little randomly generated bits of information as to what may have made it, such as previous civilizations or things (I think, I have never personally engaged with this feature because unga bunga, touch based mutator artifact give me hulk powers and xray vision)

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Bear in mind that science is a lot of weird, old code. I seriously doubt the wiki is up to date, so expect some trial and error.

That said, xenoanarch is one of those departments that are best experienced as a surprise. There's a lot of really cool stuff, and learning the systems before going in will just sap the fun. 

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Xenoarcheology is a nice relaxing job and nothing is really expected of you. The process of finding and extracting artifacts can be difficult and a long wiki dive but generally since the role relies on no one and no one relies on you, you're more than welcome to learn at your own pace. 

The struggles with the job come if your artifacts are up a z level, down a z level or just generally 230+ clicks away. Sometimes you try to walk around the station to find yourself boxed into the outside of a corridor. But these are things you learn to navigate with time. 

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On 27/04/2021 at 20:10, DeteledSawI said:

So, I want to try to get into Xenoarcheology, and there's two things I'm trying to find out.

1. What's it like? Can somebody describe it to me?

2. What kind of alien artifacts are we looking at here? Skrell? Mystery artifacts?

 

>1. What's it like? Can somebody describe it to me?

The Wiki is NOT up to date, but it is a good introduction, and some things are still useful, like what wavelength you should set your field generator to, how to find anomalies, etcetera... Plus, ask your local co-workers (ICly or OOCly) for help when you start, have no fear, no one's going to shout at you for messing up and even if they do it's only IC, we're very understanding OOCly.

More seriously, Xenoarcheology is mostly a roleplay job. YES, you will find, in rare instances, things that can put clearly help or even save the station, and during others, that will turn a shift into a nightmare if not dealt with swiftly and correctly, but most of the time, there's nothing too serious. It doesn't mean that the job is safe, far from it, working outside is hazardous from the get-go, but adding to this the unpredictable nature of anomalies... Your character may be in for some rough times, and you WILL die a lot while learning. But as Niennab said, no one expects anything from you, so you can take your time, break a few dig sites as you learn, whatever.

Do what you want. As a Xenoarcheologist, your job is to discover ancient and potentially dangerous finds... What are your methods? What are the protocols? Do you focus on anomalies (the "major artifacts")? Artifacts ("minor artifacts")? Or some other things which I won't spoil if you're ballsy/lucky enough? Do you just straight up extract your finds? Do you do some work outside? Do you build an entire outpost around your dig sites? Are you taking photographs? Using a recorder to make some sorts of logs as you work or do you report directly to your local anomalist through the comms? Some miner stumbled on something, what do we do? You're free to do whatever you want, as long as it in fits the roleplay, obviously.

Xenoarchoutpost1.png.8d229eb225810b70a48a096ba4aaa6d3.png

Why do simple things when you can dwell in more complicated operations? As long as you have fun (and as long as it makes sense), it's valid.

 

Xenoarchs and Anomalists basically do the same job. On paper Xenoarcheologists mostly do the excavating outside, while Anomalists mostly stay inside and study what the Xenoarcheologist brings, but in practice, both do the same job, because it's very rare for both to be one the station at the same time, and we generally explain that IC by saying it's a matter of specialization... So I'll speak of the Anomalist side too! And same thing! It's all about roleplay! What procedures do you go through? How far are you supposed to go understand that anomaly, and its history? Speaking of history... Why was this strange helmet found in the same site as a Crab-spawning machine, what kind of civilisation was behind it? Start identifying recurring finds and dates, establish stories for civilisations of the past! Hell, where even do these anomalies come from? Are they just old finds? Or is there something more, like Bluespace dropping them here or some other esoteric explanation? Once again, the choice is yours, lots of roleplay, lots of freedom.

171666022_Anomalistatwork.png.796d0a4b9a4ffb0dd923d62a0138c91a.png

Desperate times call for desperate measures... And we never know with anomalous materials... Sometimes it works. (It didn't work there, though...)

 

>2. What kind of alien artifacts are we looking at here? Skrell? Mystery artifacts?

Once again, since roleplay mostly dictates the details of what you find, such as if this weird psionically enhanced radio you found is a pre-Glorsh Era Skrellian piece of equipment, or if it's something from an unknown civilisation that may have disappeared eons ago, so I'll be broad. We'll say that you can find 4 types of things that may pick your interest as a Xenoarcheologist.

- Anomalies, which on your ore detector will be called "Major artifacts". Anomalies come in various shapes, but in all case come off as large objects that cannot be grabbed (but can be pushed and pulled). They are your main objective, what you as a Xenoarch must really search for, on paper at least, and what an Anomalist really has to focus on (hence the name of the job), on paper, as well. In 90% of the case, they all work the same way. They have one or two effects, each effect can be triggered, or toggled, by special conditions. I won't spoil the effects too much, but a bunch of them are on the Wiki if you want. They are generally found in sites with other artifacts, at the very bottom of the rock you dig. Sometimes, things can get different to give extra spice to your shift, an anomaly can be damaged and its effect cannot be turned off, or maybe the anomaly is something totally different than a standard one...

- Artifacts, called "Minor artifacts" on the ore detector. Artifacts are easy to come accross (especially since we got these shiny new ore detectors that can detect them). They are basically your standard archeological finds, bowls, tools, weapons, ornaments. They are GENERALLY static, which means that they have nothing special. Some, however, can be active, or anomalous, and they will show unexpected behavior. Once again, I won't spoil, but this can range from funny items to nightmare-inducing horrors. They are always found along with anomalies, but you can also find many sites that hold only artifacts.

- Lost crates. You may have come across them already, especially if you're a miner. There's nothing special about them, crates locked behind a code that you just ignore as you smash it open with your emitter, but perhaps this find is linked to your dig site somehow? Maybe this crate DID belong to the ancient civilisation that left that Anomaly next to it.

- Sites. I won't spoil too much right now, but basically... Sometimes, more than asteroids can crash on this rock. Some times, there are small wrecks, pods, things like that... Some times, there's much, much more interesting. I won't tell much, and these are very, very rare find, even if you do your best to try to find them... Buuut know that you can come across some surprises here and there.

 

248657004_AnomalyAlignmentchart.thumb.jpg.86bf348aa958612c8bbe852ea20639e0.jpg

Remember to always know how to identify your anomalies. (this image is a shitpost, please don't take it too seriously)

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