Phase Runner accident
The Phase Runner accident, also known as The Event, occurred on December 25, 2658 on Peck Labs, Olympus.
Eventually revealed to not be an "accident" but the result of the deliberate destruction of the facility via a self-destruction sequence, it ended the Energy Crisis then gripping the Outlands.
Background[edit | edit source]
Lillian Peck, a billionaire industrialist, was warned by her scientists, led then by Aleki Gibraltar, of an impending energy crisis that will affect the Outlands. In light of this, she created Project Iris in 2643, a scientific initiative tasked with finding an alternative energy source to stop the energy crisis.
In 2646, Mary Somers and her assistant Ashleigh Reid were able to synthesize a mineral called "Branthium" on the edge of a black hole. Due to reasons unknown, presumably to take control of the Branthium for her own gains, Reid disconnected the tether connecting Somers to their main ship, leaving Somers stuck on the edge of a black hole to die. This deliberate sabotage was eventually chalked up as an accident.
With the existence of their alternative energy source proven, the scientists of Project Iris, called "the Group" were now tasked to find ways of refining Branthium for use as a stable energy source. This was easier said than done and in the time they took to do this, the energy crisis has already started affecting the Outlands.
Three years into the crisis, they had a breakthrough in their research. Newton Somers, son of Mary Somers and an intern on Project Iris, pointed out that they'd need to do some adjustments on the refinery itself while it was on. Taking note that their human bodies were unable to withstand the conditions inside the reactor, Reid had the idea of modifying a MRVN to do the task for them. This would however require significant modifications to be made to the unit and giving it enough knowledge and autonomy to do the task on their own. This modified MRVN, dubbed Pathfinder, was eventually made on February 04, 2658 and with him on the Project Iris team, they were now on track to refine the Branthium they needed to solve the crisis.
The "accident"[edit | edit source]
With help from Pathfinder, the first batch of Branthium was successfully refined on December 25, 2658, the Group conducted a little celebration near the Branthium Refinery and the Phase Runner. However, during the celebrations, Reid and Somers suddenly went missing. Her absence was noted by Amélie Paquette after which Reid came back with armed guards, members of the Apex Predators, seizing control of the facility and incapacitating Paquette.
When Paquette came to, Reid was still trying to bypass the security systems, wanting to make it work without a "pair" (the biometrics of another member of the Group). This failing, she jokingly asked if any of her former colleagues wants to help her open the facility doors. Paquette seemed to be volunteering but just used the opportunity to insult Reid. Fed up, Reid sliced her hand off to provide the biometrics she needed to open the doors. She then ordered the rest of the Apex Predators to escort the other members of the Group inside the facility and left Paquette to bleed to death.
Paquette eventually caught the attention of Pathfinder, still inside the refinery, and noticed that the fail-safe she suggested to her colleague Anastasia Oliveira was indeed programmed into the MRVN. She told Pathfinder that he was made for a greater purpose and instructed him to not let Reid have the Branthium. Part of the fail-safe was a self-destruct sequence that will eventually destroy the facility - and the Branthium stored within.
Meanwhile, Reid contacted her employers and informed them that the Branthium is coming, setting the destination of the Phase Runner to Gridiron. The other members of the Group noted how it was too far and that the facility does not have enough power necessary for the distance the cargo will travel. Immediately after the conversation, Pathfinder barged in and took out some of the mercenaries. Pathfinder's arrival gave the members of the Group an opening and they proceeded to fight back against Reid and her mercenaries.
In the commotion, Oliveira was shot dead and Milly Delgado taken by Reid as a hostage. She eventually was able to get free of Reid, who focused on shooting Pathfinder, knowing all the MRVN's weak spots. Paquette eventually appeared as Pathfinder was about to be disabled, impaling Reid with her own sword.
More mercenaries were arriving while these were happening and the members of Adonis Squad were being overwhelmed, the Group and Pathfinder made the decision to use the Phase Runner to distribute the Branthium to the various planets in the Outlands in order to solve the crisis and not let it be destroyed by the eventual destruction of the facility. Saying their goodbyes, Pathfinder and the Branthium went in the Phase Runner.
The facility then was destroyed by the self-destruct protocol.
Casualties[edit | edit source]
These are the named casualties. These does not include Newton Somers, whose fate was left ambiguous.
- Dr. Conan Shelley - Died due to the explosion.
- Professor Milly Delgado - Died due to the explosion.
- Dr. Aleki Gibraltar - Died due to the explosion.
- Dr. Amélie Paquette - Died due to the explosion.
- Dr. Armen Fletcher - Died due to the explosion.
- Dr. Anastasia "Stay" Oliveira - Died by gunshot.
- Dr. Ashleigh Reid - Impaled by Amélie Paquette.
- Al Stern - Died by gunshot.
Aftermath[edit | edit source]
The Branthium appeared throughout the Outlands as planned, halting the energy crisis; while Pathfinder ended up on Solace, disabled but eventually reactivated without memories of the events that transpired and his purpose. He then proceeded to wander around the Outlands in a quest to find out his creators.
The Peck Foundation and its various benefactors (which includes Chevrex and Silva Pharmaceuticals) became extremely rich due to the use of Branthium as an energy source. The IMC established the facility of New Dawn on the planet Talos after the discovery of significant deposits of Branthium on its core, with the Planet Harvester deployed by Hammond Robotics being another attempt to take advantage of these resource.
The event itself was eventually covered up as an accidental overload of the facility's Phase Runner. This accident paved way for the eventual abandonment of Olympus, its subsequent status as an exotic tourist destination for the rich and, currently, as an arena for the Apex Games.
Depiction[edit | edit source]
- The event is revealed in Pathfinder's Quest Chapter 11. It is later summarized in the canon community video The Truth
- Loading Screen - Crisis To Avert
- This assumes that the info from Pathfinder's Quest Chapter 11 about Project Iris being on its fifteenth year of work in 2658 is true. Notably, this conflicts with info from Chapter 4 about it being founded on 2654. Due to the nature of Chapter 11, we will be using the info from there.
- Pathfinder's Quest Chapter 11 - The Truth
- Stories from the Outlands - Promise
- In the Loading Screen - Arms Race, the crisis seemed to have started on 2655. The events surrounding Pathfinder's creation was on 2658.
- This is the same event shown on Pathfinder's files during the events of Fight Night