The RTSC Guide to Startopia
Part 12: RedemptionRedemption

The Zedem Full Temple
All Peeps have little Souls, and like every other character trait, Soul points erode away during the cut and thrust of a Peep's normal day. A Peep will feel and heed the need for some religious advice and seek out a blessing from a Zedem Monk. The Zedem embody all things spiritual and religious in the game. In keeping with their religious theme, all other races receive a small Soul bonus whenever they have a conversation with a Zedem. But the Zedem's main tool is their Temple, and Peeps will receive massive Soul bonuses when they are blessed by a Monk in this institution.

Zedem Temples

Temples are raised exclusively on the Bio-Deck. They cost you nothing, but once created, it can never be removed. Your first hired Zedem Monk conjures up the central obelisk made of crystal; the process of establishing this plinth drains all the water in the vicinity, levels the land and automatically weeds out any vegetation nearby. For each subsequent monk you employ, a stone slab rises out of the nanosoil. Twelve monks will produce a ring of twelve stones, or the Zedem Full Temple. You can only have one Temple, unless you happen to capture another Administrator's Bio-deck space, and sacking all your monks will remove the ring of stones, but not the original obelisk, which will continue to attract a swirl of Monks and visiting pilgrims. Apart from the hiring and promoting each Monk, Temples cost you nothing and don't require any maintenance. Once planted, a Temple will begin to attract passing pilgrims. You'll need to have a working Comsensor and a quick trigger finger to receive their docking request before other players beat you to the punch.

At the Temple
Zedem Temples are like low level redemptive zones. Just by strolling around or standing inside one, a Peep will be subtly affected on an ongoing basis. Most Peeps earn +10Soul per second just by standing inside the confines of a Temple. Zedem Monks score considerably extra on their home turf, but some species don't get on with the Zedem or their works. There are some unfortunate souls who will never see the Light: the secular Turrakken scientists and the carnal Sirens
TurrakkenDahanese Sirens
+1Soul -1Mind
Groulien Salt HogsGrekka TargGreysKasvagoriansKarmaramansPolvakian Gem Slugs
Zedem Monks
+20Soul +5Mind
+50Love +20Fun

Startopia certainly recognises the lucrative side to religion: while rehabilitating crims or curing plague victims nets only a piddly 1000e per soul, transforming a perfectly functional (if not spiritually depleted) Startopian into a somewhat useless religious fanatic scores you a cool 5000e! Many online players try to get a Temple up quickly to earn that extra cash through conversions without having to spend lots on infrastructure. The only problem you may find is that you may lose skilled staff to a Temple conversion every now and then.

Being Blessed
Peeps go the Temple to receive religious advice and a blessing from a Zedem Monk to receive a Soul bonus. Most Peeps score a simple Mind and Soul hit during a blessing:
+1000Mind +6000Soul
Some species have difficulty with this, the Dahanese Sirens and the Turrakken being cases in point; their Souls are eased, but not as much as everyone else. For the Zedem themselves, working at the Temple is the focal point for their whole religion, which is the whole point of their whole lives, so the effect of a blessing is more than just mental and spiritual.
Dahanese Sirens
-100Mind +4000Soul
-100Mind +5000Soul
Zedem Monks
+2000Mind +7000Soul +5000Love +2000Fun

Being Cursed!
Conversely, criminal Monks can have the reverse effect on Peeps, and seriously so. Their "blessings" are more like curses, and drive a Peep further into criminality and depression... Most Peeps still get the positive Mind hit, though, scoring:
+1000Mind -2000Soul
The Zedem themselves are immune from bad religion; and the effect is lessened in the Sirens and the Turrakken.
Dahanese SirensTurrakken
-500Mind -1000Soul
Zedem Monks
+1000Mind 0Soul

The Targ on the right has serious spiritual issues (as flagged by the red Ying-Yang symbol) but look closely at the guy on the left and you'll see a dark shadow looming over him... this poor fellow's Soul has zeroed and he's now depressed.
Criminal Monks can be dangerous, since their advice only makes things worse. There's a close relationship between spiritually depleted Peeps and criminality. I've often found that a Station with a hard working Temple that's creating many Penitents is also one with bulging jails. (This is especially true in the single player missions: Mission 8, the Zedem Conclave) Lockdown Brigs incarcerate and rehabilitate crims using secular means, while the Zedem use religion to "fix" Peeps by solving their spiritual issues. I've had some surprising games where beaming a gang of Security Scuzzers into a Temple resulted in most of its patrons being marched off to the Brig - including a number of Zedem employees! The corrupt Zedem had been driving their flock to deeper levels of corruption and it wasn't until they were rehabilitated that the lockup rate across the Station started to drop.


A skilled Monk at the Temple can turn a soulfully depressed Peep into a Penitent. This is good news for your coffers, since you win that 5000e. Unfortunately, Penitents shut themselves away from the rest of the world in a big, bulky Penitent Suit, and then proceed to wander everywhere on the Station, neither buying or using anything and annoying everyone they meet. On top of that, a potential customer or worse, a hard working employee, is effectively lost to you. Depending on the size of your population and the effectiveness of your Monks - and the sort of scenario you may be playing - this can sometimes lead to manpower shortages.

All Peeps suffer a small negative soul hit when conversing with a Penitent, and the Turrakken and Sirens suffer additional losses to their minds and their sense of fun. Unsurprisingly, Zedem Monks enjoy bursts of Love, Soul, Mind and Fun with Penitents. Produce twelve Penitents with a Full Temple and interesting things happen...

No one likes Penitents...
No one but the Zedem, that is. Any other Peep that talks to a Penitent scores a negative bonus - mostly a benign Soul one of -100Soul.   The usual suspects score better and worse according to their secular and spiritual orientation. However, I don't think I've actually seen any conversations between a Penitent and anybody else. Penitents just seem to wander about, not doing anything.
Dahanese SirensTurrakken
-500Soul -500Mind -500Fun
Zedem Monks
+500Soul +500Love+500Mind +500Fun

But there are other, more subtle ways to improve the soulful well being of your Peeps. A Plaza Fountain gives them somewhere quieter to sit back, relax and meditate. The giant Viewing Gallery gives them a portal to the Universe outside, to contemplate the vastness of Creation (it also lets you see passing traders and other weird space phenomena.

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Last modified Tue, Dec 9 2003 by Lindsay Fleay.