Of all the known races in Antarian Space the Algoryn must be the most defensively minded. And with the Ghar on their doorsteps it’s no wonder, therefore when contemplating city building we must take that into account before any other considerations.
Each city would be effectively a fortification on a grand scale. With any castle there would be lines of defensive walls, separating the sections of the city. If one wall is breached they can fall back to another. This would influence the street plan. Instead of great open avenues to the centre of the city the main roads would be made to run parallel with the walls until it reaches an opening. Allowing the defenders plenty of opportunity to rain down fire on the attackers. Each opening would be a gate house which could be locked down at a moment’s notice. Indeed there may also be seen gun batteries jutting out over the highways at the point where the road turns into the gate, which would have clear lines of fire down the length of the route.
Leading off these main highways would be access to the various sectors of the city, but importantly many of these roads would result in dead ends, or cul-de-sacs, forcing the enemy to turn back on itself. At some points there may also be pinch points where the gaps in between building may narrow, making it difficult for large vehicles to turn around. Even old fashioned lamp post might be used to hinder the movement of turrets. One could also imagine within the road itself traps and obstruction could be triggered to spring up, adding to the attackers’ confusion.
The gaps in between these ring walls would most likely be filled with more familiar objects of city planning, albeit with an Algoryn twist. All aspects of an army base might be present within these estates, gun ranges, exercise grounds and even mess halls. Communal eating might also help bond the citizens. These military tropes could also act as Algoryn entertainments and sporting pursuits. Sporting arena would host events such as various unarmed combats, team events using modified guns akin to paint ball etc. Skimmer racing may well be very popular, showing off the drivers skills over specially designed circuits, mixing speed with target practice.
Living quarters may well resemble blocks of army barracks, indeed communities may be based on actual regimental forces, to improve army cohesion. A city might be home to an entire army, at least on planets along the borders with Ghar space. In safer sectors of Algoryn space we might see these numbers reduced. Although all would be trained to take up arms in an emergency.
The habitats would also be designed with defence in mind. The materials with which they are made and their very shape, may act in a similar way to angled armour. The windows could quickly be reconfigured into gun slits at a press of a button. The most surprising sight to one visiting such a city would be that it wouldn’t be battleship grey or ironclad concrete. As part of its defences it would use colour, a modernised version of the dazzle paint used to hide the shape of naval ships in the early years of WWII by means of bright colours and geometric shapes. From above the enemy would have difficulty targeting key structures. Given the Ghar’s primitive visual capabilities it could still serve useful as a means to confuse the enemy.
Furthermore outside the city walls there might be areas set aside to act as decoy cities, the very ground painted with the same dazzle designs to lure the enemy into the orbital bombardment of nothing but empty deserts. In the city itself there would be underground bunkers, but pride might prevent any Algoryn from using them. In case of siege each city would have supplies hidden away beneath them, water tanks and ration stores the size of football fields, which might last its people years until help arrived from beyond the Gates of Antares.
Also outside the city gates we would find the dwelling places of non-Algoryn inhabitants. Freeborn traders, Boromite workers and other migrant visitors would be forbidden from entering the walls, or would be limited to only the outer limits of the city for fear of being spies, or worse still Concord or Isorian infiltration shards. Those rare visitors from the IMTels might even be quarantined or forbidden from stepping foot on the Algoryn planets.
There may be many more secrets hidden in the Algoryn cities, but as off worlders we may never know what happens behind those walls.
By Wayne Clayton