What is a Monad "culture"? What is a mega-corporation?
What is a culture?
To make it extremely simple, think of a Monad culture as a traditional game "race" or "faction".
A culture in Monad is a group of people who share similar values (or a group of mega-corporations that share similar corporate traits). Cultures are usually based on geography, like the Northern Valhallans, or Eastern Krow, but is sometimes a digital community of likeminded people.
The main cultures in Monad are Krow, Valhalla, Templecast, Elfen, and Ominiya. Within each culture, there are several mega-corporations. A player's choice of culture restricts their choice of mega-corporations.
What is a mega-corporation?
To make it extremely simple, think of a Monad mega-corporation as a traditional roleplaying game "class" - each one giving you specific advantages and disadvantages.
The goal of a player is to build their own corporation and eventually become a mega-corporation. When players start building their own corporation, they rely on mega-corporations to provide unit and ship blueprints for construction. The mega-corporations are huge, established centers of knowledge and capability, and are unavoidable cooperation partners.
Mega-corporations have been around for decades or centuries, and represent the function of the old nation-states. They can have millions of employees, hundreds of their own cities and industrial areas, and a wealth of scientific knowledge. There are around 100 recognized mega-corporations in the world, of varying sizes.
Mega-corporations sell military equipment, including land unit and space ship blueprints. Depending on which mega-corporations the player is affiliated with, the player may build and recruit different things.
What is a blueprint?
A blueprint is a recipe of sorts, that lets you construct or train something. As an example, all military and civilian units require a blueprint - you don't start the game with any.
There are two types of blueprints: Product Blueprints and Military Blueprints. Product Blueprints are generally not restricted by mega-corporation or culture, while Military Blueprints are.
Can you play without a culture or mega-corporation?
You can play without a culture, but not without an affiliated mega-corporation. Mega-corporations are essential to playing the game since they provide military blueprints (including exploration ship blueprints).
When starting the game for the first time, players will not yet have any cultures unlocked, but they will have a mega-corporation affiliation with Global Industries. Global Industries (G.I.) deliver military equipment to any buyer with the means to pay.
When players unlock a new culture, they also receive a new default mega-corporation. As an example, by unlocking and playing Templecast, players will by default receive the largest Tempelcast mega-corporation Divinium.
Global Industries, Inc.
Global Industries is the largest weapons manufacturer in the world, however not the most critically acclaimed. G.I. equipment is functional, but not especially good. Designs are scrutinized enough to provide a reliable foundation for any military endeavor, but doesn't provide any particular edge.
Players who haven't yet unlocked any cultures will be able to start the game with blueprints from Global Industries - the game's currently only mega-corporation that serves players without a culture.
The aesthetic of G.I. designs is extremely minimalist and recognizable by a uniform white look of hulls and armors. Old World vintage designs of early space exploration projects were an inspiration, and have grown into an iconic manifestation of the G.I. establishment ideal.
Bravo Class - a simplistic cruiser that constitutes a reliable backbone in any fleet.
G.I. military ships range from the small Microflight to the Charlie Class dreadnought.
Aside from military ships, G.I. offers functional ships that are for strict non-military use. Their functions range from exploring the galaxy you play in, to transporting goods between planets.
G.I. surface troops are recognizable due to their black vizors. The core design of an Ensign leaves nothing to hope: you get what you see. The striped knights, as some refer to them by, are under constant evaluation. Ensigns who display especial skill and devotion are selected for Prime Ensign contracts.
Global Industries will, undeniably, become an important affiliate for all Monad players. Get introduced - you'll meet soon!