This week is extremely exciting for the Warpath Universe because we’re set to properly introduce an entirely new sub faction: the Matsudan.

Although they have already appeared as a team in DreadBall, the sumo wrestling space lizards are now set to make their impact known in Deadzone. The Matsudan sub faction starter set is due for release August 24th, but pre-orders will be going live on the Mantic website this Friday and you can order from stores too!

Until then we wanted to flesh out the background of the Matsudan with a full back story that properly introduces them into the Warpath story. Today, we’ve got part one and tomorrow we’ve got part two.

Since the inception of the Galactic Co-Prosperity Sphere (GCPS), humanity has come across many different races and planets. Some societies are happy to join the federation of planets. The benefit of increased trade, shared technology and combined knowledge is more than enough for them to see the light. The corporations behind the trade deals smile broadly as they sign agreements to share resources and appoint their own representatives on ancient councils or governments.

Conversely some societies need a little more persuasion. They’ve heard rumours that once the smiles fade, the corporations become more hard line. The suggestions and advice become instructions and demands. The small contingent of corporation security guards begins to grow and, before they know it, their planet and culture has been swallowed into the hungry maw of corporate greed.

The Matsudan are one of the cultures that learnt this the hard way. The Matsudan originated from a fertile and resource rich planet called Matsudo.  They are one of the most ancient races encountered by the GCPS and their society is steeped in tradition and the concept of honour. Originally, they were a race without great ambition for exploration. The Matsudan were relatively happy to stay on their own planet without the need for interstellar travel. Why look to the stars when you have everything you need underfoot?

MATSUDO GAMES

Across the planet their society was split into houses and a house would command their own region. The leader of a house would typically be passed down from generation to generation, with both females and males ruling with equal power. Some of the most ancient houses would be comparable to kingdoms on old earth, with each house leader acting like the king or queen for their region. The only time the line of succession would be broken would be if a member of a house had brought dishonour on the name. In these cases, the punishment was brutal and unforgiving. The members of the house would be executed, and their name removed from the records. As a result, only a handful of houses are known to have been punished in this way and their name is lost in the mist of Matsudan history.

War between the houses was extremely uncommon, as neither leader would want to bring dishonour upon their name. Instead the houses would prove their power by regularly taking part in the Matsudo Games – a tournament featuring extreme tests of strength and endurance. Each house would send their most powerful athletes to compete in wrestling contests, weightlifting tournaments and other displays of strength. To be crowned champion in one of these competitions was one of the greatest honours for a house and the contests were fought fiercely. A champion returning home after winning a tournament would be treated like a hero – and would often be allowed to marry in the house line. A great privilege and honour.

THE DESCTRUCTION OF MATSUDO

Unfortunately, the official fate of Matsudo is unknown. The Matsudan themselves remain secretive about its destruction. From data gathered there is mention of a great beast that rose from the ocean and destroyed cities as though it were a child kicking over their toys in a temper. Some records say the beast came after a house committed a great sin and it was sent to punish the Matsudan for their recklessness.

What is known is that as storm clouds raged in the atmosphere and the earth shook – either from the devastating vengeance of the beast, or a more natural cause – the remaining Matsudan issued a desperate cry for help to anyone that would listen. While Matsudo crumbled, a final plea for salvation that was shot into the stars, which no one really expected to be answered.

However, someone was listening. A race that was more ancient than the Matsudan themselves: the Asterians. While the Matsudan abide by a strict code of honour, the Warriors Clades of the Asterians live to bring balance to the galaxy. Perhaps sensing this wasn’t the fate that should befall the Matsudan, Clade ships appeared in the atmosphere above Matsudo and began rescuing any survivors they found. The planet itself was beyond repair and the remaining Matsudan watched from the spaceships that had saved them, as their home ripped itself apart.

With Matsudo destroyed, the Tesseract – the ruling council of the Asterians – agreed to take them to a new planet, which was quickly named Neo Matsudo. While the Matsudan had previously been content with their relatively simple life, the advanced technology of the Asterians awoke something inside them. No longer were they happy to just get by on whatever the planet provided, now they wanted to push their race to new feats of technological advancement.

THE RISE OF NEO MATSUDO

Houses now prided themselves on developing the latest cutting-edge technology. Rather than living outside in small settlements, the houses wanted to show off their advancements by building more and more elaborate skycrapers in the capital city of Dojomina. Over centuries, the capital became a glittering, sprawling mass of towering buildings that broke through the clouds as they fought to reach as high as the aspirations of those that built them. Inside each building, you would find each house and their followers. The simple village life was gone as the Matsudan strived for advancement.

However, their sense of honour remained steadfast and the punishments for dishonour were equally severe. If a house committed a sin, they were still executed, and their building was destroyed – wiping their legacy from the skyline of Dojomina. And so, the Matsudan continued to live to their strict codes of honour… until a corporation came knocking.

It was a company known as House Kajima that discovered Neo Matsudo and they marvelled at the technology on display. Unlike the Forge Fathers and Asterians who fiercely guarded their best technological advancements, the Matsudan were keen to show off their prowess, as a very public display of the influence of their house. House leaders – known as Matsaris – would court the attention of House Kajima representatives and it was shown as a mark of respect if GCPS dignitaries joined a Matsari for a grand banquet.

THE PRICE OF PRIDE

Desperate to keep other corporations away from the planet and the technology of the Matsudan, House Kajima representatives were keen to play up their own culture of honour, strength and endurance. They spoke of their long traditions, dating all the way back to old earth and the Matsudan immediately saw a kindred spirit in the otherwise confusing sprawl of the galaxy. The Tesseract warned them of dealing with the corporations, but the Matsudan ignored the warnings, pointing to House Kajimia’s self-confessed philosophy of honour. After all, how could such an honourable people betray them? It was impossible. Or was it…

DON’T MISS PART TWO OF THE MATSUDAN BACK STORY TOMORROW AND REMEMBER THAT PRE-ORDERS WILL BE GOING LIVE THIS FRIDAY ON THE MANTIC WEBSITE OR PRE-ORDER FROM YOUR FRIENDLY LOCAL GAME STORE TOO!

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