Pilots desperate for any edge in space will rejoice at the news of the marketing of combat boosters by various capsuleer organisations. Initial batches are already hitting the markets and seeing use in battle as Corelum Syndicate and Hedonistic Imperatives lead the way, with their unique focus on black market commodities and services.
In a press release issued last week, Corelum Syndicate stated that they were now taking orders for Exile combat boosters. This initial market push represents the culmination of many months of collaboration and applied research in the outer regions of lawless space. It has also come to symbolise a first step for the alliance and indeed, all frontier capsuleers, towards continued development in the field. For the moment, however, the focus in the Syndicate's operations is on biotechnology that is of direct use in combat, an area with high demand and plentiful opportunity for profit. "The benefits could mean the difference between the loss of Capital equipment and securing the Battlefield on which you will fight," stated the press release.
Much like the infamous Virge Salvador Sarpati, combat boosters are a unique offshoot of their family. Quite separate from the original prototype neural boosters that were supposed to aid a pilot's cognitive ability, they instead work in various ways that are beneficial in combat situations. The Exile booster for example, now in production enhances a pilot's effectiveness with armour repairers. The negative side to this temporary enhancement is a prolonged downtime consisting of hypertension, aggression and periods of extreme rage. Despite this the boosters are nonetheless in high demand for important conflicts, particularly when large and expensive capital fleets are deployed.
Their overall aim is above and beyond just combat enhancement boosters however, with alliance executor Joshua Foiritain stating: "Our ultimate objective is to produce neural boosters capable of boosting someone's ability to learn, the combat boosters are simply a step stone along the way; through the more advanced boosters, we are hoping to help mankind advance to the next level.
The Corelum Syndicate itself has been a longstanding and vocal exponent of continued booster research and production, ever since its formation and earlier days in the Curse region when it shifted allegiances to the Serpentis Corporation and left a Federation that has banned such endeavours. We've been working with the Serpentis Corporation for over a year now, which helped us a great deal with getting into the booster research in the first place," commented Mr. Foiritain.
At the same time as Corelum's production begins, a second organisation has entered the market, albeit in a slightly more reserved manner more suited to its own philosophies. Hedonistic Imperatives has also begun booster production, but rather than openly defying the empire bans, has chosen to largely stay under their radar, letting a reputation of quiet and reliable achievement do most of their publicity for them. "We just don't like to advertise as much as some, us Thukkers prefer to keep things word of mouth in a lot of cases," stated Camperific, a Hedonistic Imperative liaison for the tribe.
There are notable differences between the two organisations. Corelum has evolved into an overtly anti-Federation Serpentis ally, whilst the Imperative is less easily definable, with a broader scope involving narcotics, smuggling and other lucrative underworld profiteering. Whilst Corelum seeks long-term benefits in the neural booster field, the Imperative is focused on philosophies closer to their roots.
Commenting on their varied inspirations, CEO of Es and Whiz, Masu'di stated: "To allow people to expand their mind through the exploration of altered states has always been a priority. We are not just station corner pushers, although I wouldn't go as far as saying we are uplifting humanity." On other points the two entities share more common ground, such as distaste for the current empire bans on booster production. "Prohibition is not really a good solution to anything," Masu'di remarked.
Commenting on the current bans in the empires, one Gallente Federation scientist who wished to remain anonymous remarked: I'm not sure how we can accurately call ourselves progressive as a nation, when we drive out entities like Coreli, I think the title of their recent announcement was more than just a play on words. They were adamant supporters of the Federation once, and now they are in bed with Serpentis. I'm not sure Federation policy on Booster research isn't at least partially to blame, they certainly seem to hold it in low regard."
It is still uncertain whether or not the empires will relax their policies on booster research now that the capsuleers of the frontier have forged ahead on their own path without them. If the fear of being left behind the technological curve militarily has no effect on innovation and policy, perhaps the harsh financial truths of diversified profits will. Perhaps it is already beginning to be too late, or as the Coreli Corporation often says: "Welcome to the future."