Solar Realms Elite is a strategy game for bulletin board systems (BBSes) in which you build an empire. The goal is to become the biggest and strongest empire. Reaching that goal requires attacking other players, forging alliances, performing covert operations, and some economic strategy. Oftentimes deception, misinformation campaigns, and behind-the-scenes dealmaking come into play.
Unfortunately, the game's author, Amit Patel, lost the source code and development pretty much ceased in 1994.
You can learn more at these links:
You can still play SRE on present-day BBSes, including my own: Guardian of Forever BBS. To connect to most BBSes, you will need a telnet program like SyncTerm.
In the early 1990s, I wrote a series of short stories based on Solar Realms Elite. I uploaded these stories to the file sections of several St. Louis BBSes where other users could download and read them. I was about 13 or 14 years old at the time, so these are not works of high art.
The first three stories (SRE I-III) were narrative descriptions of an actual game of Solar Realms Elite played on "Knight's Armor BBS". They were an adolescent attempt to make clear how important my role was to the outcome of the game -- since I felt I hadn't received the glory I deserved within the game.
People read and downloaded the stories, and a few folks encouraged me to write more. So I did.
The subsequent stories came solely from my imagination as I created a universe (later, a multiverse) of empires and emperors and various races. The exceptions were the stories "Feqh Galaxy" and "Galaxy Sei" -- these stories were based on the events of other games I participated in, but still set in the same universe as the rest of the series.
I also wrote a document about trade and economics in the game itself. This was mostly a theoretical document, and doesn't have much practical value. (In the years after I wrote all these textfiles, I did discover a few actual tricks and techniques beyond the well-known strategy of trading between two empires at different economic levels to exploit inflation pricing. Some day I'll write those down.)
One other note: Apparently "va fan culo puttana" is an Italian curse phrase. My enemy in the Space Empire Elite game that inspired "Galaxy Sei" used this phrase as his empire name. I didn't learn it was a curse until many years after these files were written. Ah, the ignorance of youth.
* The name of this story is a nod to "Fire Escape's Headquarters". The events of the story are based on a game that was played on the FEHQ BBS.
** This story is about a substance called "X." The X in the title is not a Roman numeral, and is not to be confused with the later SRE X: Legacies. I have no idea what I was thinking at the time. :)
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