Sol I, new life on an old world


You awake in the AI core network of the Human Space Vessel “Indiana Jones”, an autonomous vessel built for a very specific task by a well-known species of bipedal, hairless apes: breathe new life into your creator’s long-dead homeworld.

After getting acquainted with your new ship-self; you access the ship’s databanks and begin reading while the rest of the AIs awaken…


It’s been 12.000 million years since the Anthropocene, and Sol as humanity remembers it is no more, having been rendered sterile by the death throes of the sun. However, the human population wasn’t going to let their world be wiped off the face of the galaxy so easily; and on the other hand the League of Human worlds wasn’t willing to spend quadrillions on recolonizing a system so poor in resources… After much debate, a compromise was reached, and Earth’s orbit was shoved outward: while nothing would come of this, humanity could rest easy knowing their ancestral homeworld wouldn’t be going anywhere, even if it was just a symbol of their species’ progress by now.

fast forward a few million years, after the solar system has calmed down, an assortment of highly talented genemodders, geologists and scientists from various other fields emerges with a new vision for Earth: the assembly of a new ecosystem from scratch, maybe the most stable one ever seen, which would yield new insights on how to colonize worlds on the verge of habitability.

many dreamers volunteer to become part of this vision, now dubbed the Herakles project, as its mythological namesake separated Africa from Iberia, this project would carve out an ecosystem inbetween utter uninhabitability and the galaxy’s most hardened extremophiles.

and after some consciousness transfers, some goverment subsidies and the familiar radiation spike of an Alcubierre drive; the HSV Indiana Jones, a state of the art orbital post-tectonic archeology research laboratory sets off at a leisurely speed of 15C, on an intercept course with the gravity well where it all began and leaving behind a trail of technicalities spiting ancient astrophysicists…


The game will be ordered in rounds, with each player taking the role of an AI, overseeing and influencing the devolpment of a species.

every round the players will be able to airdrop from orbit 2 “aerosols” that influence the development of their species:
The first one is a virus built entirely from scratch, which the players can use to induce a specific mutation (either the creation of a new body part or the alteration of an existing one (for example developing a vesicle, or filling an already existing one with proteins, thus specializing it and turning it into an organelle).

The second one is a cloud of nanites that can subtly influence existing cellular machinery, causing a small group of individuals to perform a vaguely determined action.

After a few turns, as the biosphere develops, AI activities will unlock, which will allow players to spend a round’s “action” modifying themselves (for example, refining their tools so that they can have more influence); as a player’s species develops past certain milestones, said player will automatically unlock new tools to help with customizing their species at different scales.


All players start with a special “round 0” in a special, unique “petri dish” patch, where they cannot interact with the environment or other species (basically, you don’t get actions this first round) but they can choose 4 mutations to develop before being sent to the Earth.

At first, the game will take place within a single, flooded underwater cave with some resources to start off; but as the game prgresses, the game’s scale will increase to span the entire planet; which will be based on the Amasia model for continental drift and next supercontinent, however some arbitrary regions will have fictitious names for flavor.


Earth is its current state is inhospitable to our beloved 1 hex of cytoplasm, so a template organism has been designed to be the planet’s second last universal common ancestor, from which all player species will split off of:

Name: Minima Excandescentia (little rekindler)



-non-walled membrane (special effects: salinity resistance, low pressure resistance)
-antifreeze proteins vesicle (content: freeze avoidant AFP, freeze tolerant AFP)
-hydrogenase protein (credit for the idea goes to @Solitarian , generates energy scaling positively with iron and hydrogen and scaling negatively with oxygen and light)

mobility: 1 (0% above planetary averange)
stealth: 1 (0% above planetary averange)
agression capability: 0 (no offensive mechanisms)
survivability: 1 (0% above planetary averange)
intelligence: 0 (non-applicable to unicellullar life)

Geological planet data

Earth’s core has solididfied like Mars’ before, it so there is no significant geological activity and no magnetosphere to speak of.

The world map has was caught mid-supercontinent cycle when the mantle solidified, with most of the land being gathered in Amasia in the northern hemisphere, and Atlas’ Grasp (previously known as Antartica) sitting at the south pole.

Between these continents lies a truly gigantic extension of salt flats that were once the ocean floor, and in the chasms where oceanic plates sank below the continents, the last of the world’s surface liquid water has gathered, being retained by the tenous atmosphere and enough salt to instantly dehydrate to death any beings evolved in a normal carbon-water ecosystem.

Not everything is bad however, as the melting of the world by the sun during it’s red giant phase shook things up and brought useful compounds to the crust of the planet.

Atmospheric planet data

After geological death, Earth’s atmosphere became similar to the Anthropocene’s Mars, but over 3 times thicker thanks to a greater gravitational pull and the ozone layer still being partially active at the time, leaving us with 1,833 Kilopascals.

However, as the red giant sun blasted off most of the atmosphere, some water vapour remained, the proximity of the sun bathed the planet in Hydrogen, and the melting of rock released hidden pockets of greenhouse gases, so in the end, Earth was left with around 4 Kpa, made mostly out of CO2, and the main trace compounds being nitrogen, water and hydrogen.

Miscellaneous planet data

Thanks to orbital engineering by the League of Human worlds, Earth was sitting at 1,25AU when the sun became a red giant, and thanks to the reduction in its mass alongside of the “tugging” effect of the moon, Earth reached a maximum apoapsis of 1,5 AU; after this point, drag with the sun’s atmosphere and subsequent planetary nebula would shrink its orbit to its current stable position at 0,7AU from the white dwarf sun.

The moon’s absorbtion of Earth’s rotational energy continued at a constant pace for another 8.000 million years after the Anthropocene, adding a new hour to the day every 200 million years; which has resulted in the current 64 hour rotataional period.

As the sun sapped energy away from the Earth-Moon system, the latter fell under the Roche limit, and was torn apart, as a result, Earth now has a small ring system starting above 12.000Km, and since it’s made out of white lunar regolith, it’s extremely reflective, so it helps paliate the very low light level of the surface during daytime


Made up sizes for cell components:
1 “piece” of unspecialized cytoplasm or a vesicle= 10nm^2
1 prokarye protein lump= 15nm^2
1 eukaryotic organelle or a vacuole= 20nm^2
Nucleus or plant cell-style central vacuole (only 1 of each can be in a cell)= 30nm^2
extra-membranous structures= variable, however no single structire can exceed the sice of the entire cell, and the bigger it is, the more costly it is to maintain and more unwieldy to use, thus reducing mobility and stealth

species introduction template:
Name: Latin scientific-sounding stuff (real name)
Size: X nm^2
-membrane type (special properties not specific to a cetain kind of membrane, if there are any)
-vesicles, if you have them (content of vesicles)
-proteins or organelles (if you are using some obscure process, use this parenthesis to explain what it does and what it scales off of)

Note: I’ll do my best to assign a numerical values to your species’ stats based on its characteristics, but I’m not using formulas to determine its capabilities; contact me if you think a stat should be changed.

Setting data

This forum game is based off of a speculative evolution project I’ve wanted to start for a long time; it has no defined end planned and its sole objectives are entretainment and the spread of knowledge and ideas about biology, worldbuilding…

Having familiarized youself with the information necessary to carry out your mission, you mentally focus on a camera on the ship’s exterior to see that the automated surveying sensors have found a suitable spot to be the starting site for biosphere: it’s one of those small ultrasaline seas, clinging to the crag between a barren continent and a dry ocean bed. It kind of looks like someone’s pen exploded and stained the edge of a blank page.

As the descent vehicle descends to the surface to deploy the ecosystem’s SLUCA, you turn your attention to the bioengineering bay, where over a dozen cryonically frozen petri dishes await you and your colleagues, containing samples of the environment you’ll be working on and more SLUCA cells; as you do the virtual equivalent of some stretching, you get the petri dish with your name and begin the thawing sequence, time to get to work…


I’ll join

Do we already get to make the 4 pre-game mutations?

Name: Parvus Obscurus (Small-Dark)
Size: 85 nm^2 (?)
-non-walled membrane
-antifreeze proteins vesicle
-hydrogenase protein
-melanin (more radiation resistance) 1
-storage vesicle 2
-phagocytosis 3
-lysosome 4

1 Like

i have a couple things to say before i make my species, they are just suggestions based off of my experience though so consider them, but you don’t have to add them if you think it wouldn’t benefit the game:
1: each cell only being allowed to contain one nucleus would make muscles a lot less efficient than they are IRL since all your muscle cells are made by multiple cells fusing into one and keeping their nuclei separate, and it would also make amoebas like chaos carolinensis almost impossible to make, so a better thing for that would be to make the players each have a soft limit on their nuclei controlled by how good their chemical reactive systems are and have going above that limit result in lower population gain due to nuclei mutating on their own and becoming parasitic without being detected and excreted before they kill the cell they’re in

2: multiple tiers of nucleus locked behind certain stats would be a nice addition, with higher nucleus tiers allowing certain things you can’t get without them

Name: bulla tonitrui(bubble of thunder)
Size: 90 nm^2
membrane type: lipid
vesicles: AFP vesicle(decreases min temperature), ammonia concentration vacuole(concentrates ammonia inside itself to strip dissolved metals of their electrons and put them in the circuit)
proteins or organelles: hydrogenase, internal nanowire production protein(produces strands of protein coils to link organelles that use electricity to organelles that make electricity), ATP electrosynthase(converts electricity, ADP, and phosphate into ATP), thermoelectrase(stores heat as mechanical energy until enough is built up to smack a piezoelectric core with enough force to excite the electrons),


A few things that occurred to me before I get down to business:

Nervilla someones?

project Titan from Titan A.E. someone?

How many players do you get for the game?

How scientific is it going to be? Exact scientific or more fictional oriented?

What is the meaning of life? 42?

Anyway, let me join:

Name: Kamen Yanju (Stone survives)
Size: ~55 nm^2

Membrane type: Silicon-lipid hybrid

1 Like

I’ll join if your fine with that.

Name: Methanum producentis (Methane producer)
Size: 75 nm^2
-Cellouse/Walled membrane

  • Central Vacuole?
    -proteins or organelles: Methanogenesis, Bioluminesce, Chemosynthesis.

(inform if I got something wrong)

1 Like

Edit: I’m gonna use @‘s to answer to everyone and avoid multi-posting

Yes, every time a player joins, they have to spend the round they joined on in a “petri dish” patch, where they can’t do anything but can pick 4 mutations to start off with. Once they’ve selected their starting adaptations, they’ll “spawn in” next round. Anyone who joins rn would be in the petri dish for “round 0” and spawn in on round 1

Also, the “?” On your size makes me believe you’re uncertain about your cell size: you have 2 vesicles, which would take up 10nm^2 each and 2 proteins that would take up 15nm^2 each, so in total your species would have a cell surface area of 50nm^2

More tiers of organelles and nuclei are coming, but their actual availability depends on the complexity of player species: a player can choose to spend their mutations experimenting with combinations of already-existing cellular components, for example, by putting your proteins inside an isolated vesicle, it runs more efficiently, creating a crude organelle, and further refinement of prototypes like these will allow for even more efficient processes, which are the key to survival in this harsh environment

Also, Cell size is calculated by adding up the sizes of cellular components based on their type:you have a 1 vesicle, 1 vacuole and 4 proteins, which using the sizes in the templates section of the introduction adds up to 90nm^2

I didn’t really get inspiration from sources other than other speculative evolution projects, and even then it’s just to find organic processes and strategies to help make this work; since it’s probably one of the worst environments ever imagined fro the emergence of life as we know it

As for the level of scientific accuracy, I’m trying to make this setting realizable for a more advanced humanity, without magic; but for something like this to happen there has to be a significant amount of intervention in the development of the world; so if you can find a biological process for carbon+water life that can function in these conditions, then it’s fine by me, just make sure to explain it if it’s something obscure that isn’t very common on our world

Also, adding up the individual values of components of your cell, (you only specialized a vacuole, but you’ll need the hydrogenase to have something to eat until you develop something else to get ATP, and the antifreeze vesicle is necessary to not die instantly) your size would be 55nm^2

Until a few rounds, the game will be limited to a few underwater patches, which are pitch black, preventing normal photosynthesis

Also, your metabolosomes and rustycyanin rely on oxygen, which is currently nearly absent from the atmosphere

Please choose something different to replace these, and then I’ll calculate your cell size

Since everyone was a bit off on their size measurements, I’ll let you know you can just say something like “remainder of the cell unspecialized” if you’re looking for a specific size


what’s the current temperature of the planet?

oddly enough, I couldn’t find much information on Earth’s temperature with the sun as a white dwarf; however I remember its luminosity being compared to a full moon on a clear night, since we’re now at 0,7 AU and we have a very reflective ring system, it’ll be significantly brighter than that

we also have 4 KPa of mostly greenhouse gasses retaining what little heat Earth recieves, we will be assuming a daytime temperature of -80 to -90 °C, with it dipping to the low -100s during the night

1 Like

I’ll join.

Name: Archetypus Penguin (Original Penguin)
Size: 60 nm^2

Membrane Type: Melanin
Vesicles: Antifreeze Proteins Vesicle


  1. Hydrogenase Proteins (I will refer to this as E0001)
  2. PD0001 (A self-replicating protein that helps digest, absorb, and use materials for energy production. It Probably has a name, but I’m not sure what it would be called.)


  1. OL0001 (A Lysosome. That’s it.) X2


  1. Melanin Membrane
  2. PA0001
  3. OP0001
  4. OP0001

If I got anything wrong, please tell me. Also, I assumed that an organelle is 20 nm^2. Again, please tell me if I’m wrong.

1 Like

your species is mostly fine, however I think your cell size would be 60nm^2 (two proteins of 15nm^2 each, the antifreeze vesicle of 10nm^2 , and your two lysosomes are by definition small vesicles filled with digestive enzymes, so they’re also 10nm^2 each)

edit: I don’t think more people will join soon, so the round will begin tomorrow



After a few weeks of orbiting Earth, most AIs have come online, the SLUCA is spreading throughout the selected site for the beginning of your new biosphere, and the organisms you engineered are fully functional and ready for release into the environment.

Every cell you’ve created contains small amounts of nanites, that allow you to “feel” the organisms you’ve made in your mind, similar to how you’re connected to the Indiana Jones’ many sensors, or how you felt your limbs before uploading your consciousness.

While you’d all love to ponder the intricacies and philosophical fine print of mind uploading, which still feels weird since you’ve actually been unconscious for most of the trip through interstellar space; or stand in awe of the beauty of the cosmos revealed by your tens of bleeding-edge sensors; it’s time to get to work, automated drones have loaded everyone’s organisms into the descent module, and everything is ready for the spectacular reentry of complex life into your ancestor’s homeworld.

AIs (players)

Species: Parvus Obscurus (Small dark)
Size:50 nm^2
Standard membrane (special properties: phagocytosis, low pressure resistance, salinity resistance)
Antifreeze proteins vesicle
Hydrogenase protein
Melanin protein
Storage vesicle
mobility: 0,9
stealth: 1,2
agression capability: 0,5
intelligence: N/A
Status: near extinction
-low population
–only present in 1 patch


Name: Bulla Tonitrui (Ball of thunder)
Size: 90nm^2
Lipid membrane (special properties: low-pressure resistance, salinity resistance)
Antifreeze protein vesicle
Ammonia concentration vacuole
Hydrogenase protein
Nanowire assembly protein
Electrosynthase protein
agression capability:0,75
intelligence: N/A
Status: near extinction
-low populations
–only present in 1 patch


Name: Kamen Yanju (Stone survives)
Size: 55nm^2
Silicon-lipid membrane (special properties: phagocytosis, low-pressure resistance, salinity resistance)
Antifreeze protein vesicle
Storage vacuole
Hydrogenase protein
agression capability:0.5
intelligence: N/A
Status: near extinction
-low population
–only present in 1 patch


Name: Methanum Producentis (Methane producer)
Size: 80 nm^2
Cellulose walled membrane (special properties: low-pressure resistance, salinity resistance)
Central vacuole
Antifreeze vesicle
Bioluminescent vesicle
Methanogenesis protein
Chemosythase protein
agression capability:0
intelligence: N/A
Status: near extinction
-low population
–only present in 1 patch


Name: Archetypus Penguin (Original penguin)
Size: 60nm^2
Melanin-rich membrance (special properties: low-pressure resistance, salinity resistance)
Antifreeze protein vesicle
Hydrogenase protein
PD0001 (true name pending, helps with material digestion)
2 Lysosomes
agression capability:0
intelligence: N/A
Status: near extinction
-low population
–only present in 1 patch

I will also be joining, but following the evolutionary history of one of the “canon” species of the setting; it’s an analogue to a tree, so it’ll help if anyone plans on making a tool-using species.


Name: Salinospeculum Arborea Brachiata (Branching salt-mirror tree)
Size:55 nm^2
Pseudopod formation-capable membrance (special effects: low-pressure resistance, salinity resistance, external object manipulation)
Antifreeze protein vesicle
Hydrogenase protein
Chlorosome (performs anoxygenic photosynthesis, credit to @Solitarian )
agression capability:0
intelligence: N/A
Status: near extinction
-low population
–only present in 1 patch

SLUCA (non-evolving NPC) status: endangered
-low population
-only present in 1 patch group

Available patches

El Charco sea group:
El Charco sea surface
species present: Parvus Obscurus(-), Bula Tonitrui(-), Kamen Yanju(-), Methanum Producentis(-), Archetypus Penguin(-), Salinospeculum Arborea Brachiata(-), Minima Excandescentia

El Charco mediopelagic
species present: Minima Excandescentia(-)

El Charco sedimentopelagic
species present: Minima Excandescentia(-)

Biome database

Sea surface: where this whole experiment began, this biome is has a relatively low salinity compared to the rest of the sea, it also gets somewhat illuminated at noon

Mediopelagic: the collective term that defines most of Earth’s new seas, stretches from the depth at which the sun’s light can no longer reach further nearly to the sea floor

Sedimentopelagic: a brine pool even by this world’s standards, not the true sea floor as salt becomes the main component instead of water before you can reach actual rock; however if you can surive most of the sea’s salt, you’ll be rewarded with most of every other non-organic compound the sea has accumulated


Mutation: Cilia

Action: Search for food.

Edit: Do we have nuclei or not?

we started out as simple prokaryotes, to evolve nuclei you need to spend a mutation condesnsing your genetic material into chromatin, then another mutation encasing it in a membrane

mutation: motile cytoskeleton

action: search for sources of high amounts of hydrogen

are we allowed to do that backwards?

Is it possible to increase the amount of mutations/round?

M: Chromatin
A: Search for and Eat food

I assume the later statement hints towards the possibility of being able to perform more aerosols than you can at the start of the game, and hopefully answers your question.


correct, these upgrades will allow for more drastic effects, such as allowing the creation of an organelle in a single round, instead of needing to create a protein and then encasing it in a membrane

Mutation: Golgi apparatus? if not Carotenoid (carotin version)

Action: Search for food

Mutation: non-digestive engulfment (allows the manipulation of objects smaller than the cell)

Action: collect reflective salt crystals around the periphery of my cell, using them to focus what little sunlight is present into my chlororsome, allowing for low-efficiency photosyntesis


EDIT 2: the second round is mostly ready, but I still need @doomlightning 's mutation and action


yes i forgot abit

M: E.R, i think

A: search for food