Doris Picture

This planet is called Doris, named after the sea nymph from Greek mythology who is associated with the bounty of the sea. It could be called a super-earth, being nearly four times as large as Earth, but only about twice as dense. It rests in the habitable zone of its parent star, a yellow main sequence star (much like our sun). It has many moons orbiting it, and the gravitational pull of all these bodies causes the planet to become volcanically active.

This volcanic activity releases volatile gases into the atmosphere, creating a greenhouse effect. Like most super-earths, it has very large amounts of water. In fact, without the vulcanism there would be no land at all. Magma rising to the surface has created over one million islands. Water and atmosphere gave birth to life, and soon the oceans were full of marine life and the islands covered in tropical xenoflora. A sapient species evolved, and quickly spread across the world.

They communicate in an odd way. One of their evolutionary ancestors used an organ capable of detecting the electromagnetic field generated by an animal's nervous system (similar systems are found in sharks). They also once used electricity to hunt their prey, and retained a vestigial organ that produced electric charge through a chemical reaction. By rapidly fluctuating the intensity of this electric organ's output they can create an oscillating magnetic field which they can detect with their "fifth sense" (they don't have a sense of smell). This "magnetopathy" isn't at all like direct brain-to-brain communication, but it is similar to very complex Morse code.

They have thousands of cultures and all manor of tribal clans. Their universal culture values exploration and discovery, and they soon traveled throughout their world through the use of strange submarine-boat hybrids (they needed to be near a source of water, so they just built big floating nets with sails to travel in). They also have an ancient history of piracy, which persisted even into the space age. Once they discovered computers their technology advanced rapidly, as their style of communication gave them an edge in understanding electronics.

Asteroids courtesy of