The IMG’s story is intertwined with the fate of Planet Magnus II – also called Borea. This planet had been a center of naval production and industry for five decades from 2590 to 2650, but when the Kilian system and its riches in resources became the focal point of development, Magnus II declined rapidly in significance. In the 2640s there was a large scale abandonment of Magnus operations and only 3000 inhabitants remained on the complete planet, living in the eerie, depopulated ghost world.
Until 2751, Magnus was classified as a military operation, however the UEE lease claim expired and was not renewed. Therefore it became legal for colonists to move to this place. These colonists consisted of a very heterogeneous mix of outbackers, claim jumpers and shady individuals. This led to the development of a Frontier Spirit where everybody had the opportunities to become successful if they managed to brave averse natural conditions.
With the UEE monopoly gone, big corporations like ArcCorp and Shubin Interstellar amongst others invested in the revitalization of Magnus II. Providing work for the colonists, the big interstellar companies grew rapidly, but soon they clashed with the Frontier mentality and the Magnus code of honour of their indigenous workforce.
The confrontations cumulated in strikes and later large-scale civil unrest in several factories and what started out as a workers’ attempt to protect their livelihoods escalated into a rebellion against a very powerful corporate governance. The protests were struck down violently by ArcCorp, Shubin Interstellar and corrupt government officials. Oppressive measures were employed by most major companies to keep such workers’ revolts from repeating themselves.
In 2775 the situation spiraled out of control again when former corporation employees seized factories and equipment, looted and destroyed corporation property after major layoffs.
The Independent Miners Guild was founded by a group of disgruntled Shubin miners who had lost their jobs after they engaged in protests. They decided to take possession of abandoned mining infrastructure that had been left behind when UEE pulled out and to restart production on their own.
They banded together, combined their skillsets and managed to reinstate three small mining operations. This choice however set them on a direct confrontation course with the big corporations. These three loosely cooperating groups would later become the founding fathers of the Independent Miners Guild.
In the following years, more and more workers joined the Guild after losing their jobs or realizing how badly they were being exploited mainly by ArcCorp and Shubin Interstellar.
Like before, militias funded by ArcCorp and ignored by corrupt Magnus officials went after the workers. The assumption was that the rivals could be subdued easily, however the Guild proved to be resilient due to their decentralized structure. Small groups operating in different places with mobile equipment managed to evade the paramilitary operations for 5 years.
In 2779, the Independent Miners Guild decided to cease their costly cat and mouse games with the corporations’ militias. In one last daring raid, they ransacked an SI mining outpost and a ArcCorp factory, looted machinery, loaded re-purposed equipment and production materials onto their stolen ships and took flight.
The small fleet of stolen corporation starships disappeared into the darkness of space. The leadership of the IMG had decided to move to the edges of the known universe where the power of the mega-corporations was limited and the law could not reach them.
After a 2-year-long journey of scouting, mobile mining and hiding in asteroid belts, these outcasts heard of the colony Levski in the Nyx system that had been founded in the year 2655 by a small group of political activists from Sol and other systems, who sought to escape Messer’s totalitarian rule.
They chose the relatively newly-recolonized asteroid Delamar as a place to settle in 2781 with the hope to make it their new home. The Levski colony provided the IMG with all the essential infrastructure of civilization and it proved to be a place in which their Frontier mentality, determination, endurance and also cunning were helpful qualities. Adding useful skills, resilience to outward dangers and the willingness to work hard, the Independent Miners were received in a friendly way.
2790 the Guildmembers numbered 500 and those colonists were politically active and fit the predominantly anti-totalitarian, free-thinking society perfectly. The Independent Miners encouraged resistance against corporate exploitation and attracted more and disgruntled workers to the cause by offering fair wages for quality work under acceptable conditions.
With growing influence and the starting problems solved, the IMG decided to contribute their part to the security of the Levski colony, starting in the year 2791. Members coming from a military service or paramilitary background started offering security services for mining sites. A space security section was added in 2793 when IMG fighter wings engaged in routine patrols to keep track of unknown contacts in the hard to control Nyx asteroid belt for the first time.
Twenty years later, the Guild already had around 12.000 members that were organized in loose groups of independent miners, who cooperated whenever possible and who acted as a unified organization when necessary, which happened frequently in the hazardous fringe areas of civilized space.
In 2795 a Guild delegation managed to reach a settlement with ArcCorp and Shubin Interstellar that concluded the fallout of the violent early chapters of the Guild’s creation and resulted in a withdrawal of two massive bounty contracts on Guildmembers.
The gradual growth of the Guild made it necessary to establish clear organizational structures. The Guild consists of Guildmembers, Guildmasters and an Archguildmaster.
The Guild’s success is rooted in the exploitation schemes of many interstellar corporations where the individual is nothing and power is centralized in the hands of few.
To avoid falling back into corporate structures of oppression in which all power is held by few, the Guild installed a system of checks and balances and separated the judicative from the executive branch. The Table of Judges is a vital element of solving conflicts inside the Guild.
History of creation: With constant growth, struggles for power had broken out briefly in 2790 between two Levski miner camps. Back then, the Guild Council had found itself unable to solve a conflict of this size as any intervention would have been recognized as partisan. Therefore, a new institution was created – the Table of Judges.
Whenever there are legal arguments inside the Guild, every Guildmember has the right to have his grievance heard by the Table of Judges, which is a meeting of elected Judges. These Judges listen to the complaint, can summon witnesses and can call for an investigation of the matter. The Archjudge runs the ToJ sessions and can break deadlock votes.
Furthermore, they instated the so-called Guardian who has to revisit all decisions made by the Guild Council and the Council of Captains and sign them into action. He has the right to veto decisions that might harm the Guild and send them back to the respective Council.
This was also the time, when the Independent Miners Guild’s charter was agreed upon.
Today the Independent Miners Guild is proud to have managed to preserve their ideals of individual freedom and the spirit of democracy throughout its turbulent history. The Guild is known for fair wages, above-average working conditions, progressive worker rights and generally for respecting the right of the individual.
It is undisputed that the Guild has managed to survive even in the most adverse environments because of the flexibility of its members, which stems from the vastly different backgrounds from which their members are recruited. There is also the rumor that the Guild is morally flexible and that they do not shy away from shady deals with smugglers and criminals, as long as it furthers the interests of the Guild.
The Guild is currently organized in four main sections:
The Guild is always recruiting! Whoever you are, and wherever you come from, whatever your social background – the Guild is always in need of good, industrious and dedicated men and women. Get into contact with us and become an Independent Miner.
The IMG is an NPC faction in the famous 2003 Freelancer game, which was also made by Chris Roberts. For those too young to remember, Freelancer is one of the predecessors of Star Citizen. In vanilla Freelancer, the IMG are shady miners who cooperate secretly with all sorts of criminals and who consist of angry miners who abandoned the big corporations.
The mod Discovery Freelancer (2006) greatly enhanced the original setting and background and it is still alive today. Dedicated roleplayers took over the IMG faction (between 2007 and 2008) and breathed life into the NPC faction by making characters, roleplaying the political development, making alliances and waging wars. The official IMG| faction is still alive and kicking in 2018.
Active and former leaders as well as dedicated players from over a decade of Freelancer have reunited to transfer the unique feeling of IMG gameplay into Star Citizen. We eliminated all Freelancer references and re-wrote the lore completely to fit the universe of Star Citizen. What we keep is the general concept of IMG, the unique feeling and the way we play the IMG. We firmly believe that a recipe that has worked well for more than a decade is worth being continued in Star Citizen.
The Independent Miners Guild consists of free, independent people who banded together voluntarily to be able to survive. They combine their skills, equipment and strengths to get the best outcome even in adverse conditions. The Guild operates wherever resources and opportunities can be found. The area of operations is not limited to UEE space, but the Guild is not not afraid of staking claims in uncharted areas or acquiring mining rights in Banu and Xi’An Space.
The IMG started out as rebels who fought two big corporations on Magnus II for better working conditions and fairer wages, and then developed a different model of how to work themselves. They had to flee when they found themselves pressured hard by the corporations that they had rebelled against and were forced to retreat to the fringes of civilized space. They settled in the Nyx system and found a home there.
Democratic Values: The Guild focusses on democratic values, individual freedom and self-determination of every member. Every Guildmember has a voice and the right to play a part in shaping the Guild. What unites the members is the refusal to be exploited by mega-corporations ever again.
Frontier Spirit: Guildmembers also share a willingness to take matters into their own hands. The Frontier Spirit that the first independent miners learnt the hard way on Magnus II is still present and it helps the Guild operate even under the harsh circumstances of the fringe systems.
Cooperation: Out there, you have to trust the miner next to you, you have to rely on the hauler to make it through the dangerous piracy zones and you are reliant on the security team that patrols the asteroid belt.
We are a group of players who love playing as a team, working together, accomplishing tasks together.
We mine resources, transport them to buyers, escort our assets and defend our operations as a team effort. We also enjoy roleplaying our characters, do ingame communication and develop diplomacy in roleplay.
There is of course nothing wrong with having good-humoured fun, and we will have plenty of it. But understanding that there are borders to it and when to be serious and mature is important to us.
In roleplay, you are not yourself in the game, but you put a character between you and the game.
Example: I am Marcus, 40 and a teacher in Real-Life, but the character I play in Star Citizen is Jack Henderson, who lives on Levski, owns a spaceship, works for the Guild and loves doing shady business. Playing the game like this allows you to get deeper into the game, and enjoy a higher degree of immersion. It also almost automatically eradicates memeing and trolling, which we do not want.
We organize via Skype groups and Spectrum, where we announce our activities for the day, discuss and plan operations and keep each other informed. It’s also where you can call for help in case you quickly need a miner, a gunner on your hauler or a pilot for your docked fighter.
Up until now we use TeamSpeak 3 for our tactical communication, which might change depending on the abilities of Spectrum.
Yes and no.
No: We recreated the IMG and made sure that it fits the universe of Star Citizen. Consequently there is no Freelancer Discovery lore left in this version of the IMG in Star Citizen.
Yes: We have gathered many players of 11 years of the official IMG| Discovery faction, including nearly all past and current leaders of the faction, and re-united them in the IMG of Star Citizen.
Then don’t forget to add your Skype ID, so we may add you to the organisation channel.
Sometime after the first few dozen members of the IMG have left the UEE Space, they felt the need to give themselves a structure to maintain their own civilization at the fringes of civilized space.
Even though their numbers were small initially, they planned ahead and decided to lay down the core principles of their way of life in a Charter. In it they defined the procedures of how to set up, adjust or discard rules in order to have a law system that could be adapted to the ever-changing challenges of the Guild.
This charter reads as follows:
We believe in, and uphold amongst our Guildmembers and as far as our influence reaches, the declaration of human rights of 1948 AD.
The primary level of determining the Guilds decisions, is the “Council of Captains” (CoC). Every captain who is a member of the guild shall have a voice and a vote in this council and he or she shall speak on behalf of their crew.
Every day business cannot be run by complete CoC sessions. Therefore the CoC elects Guildmasters from the members of the CoC. These Guildmasters shall run certain aspects of the Guild’s business in their name and represent the Guildmember’s interests.
The Guildmasters form the “Guild Council” (GC), who elect from their midst the Archmaster, who is responsible for making sure the Guild (represented by the Guildmasters in the Guild Council), works effectively and united, once a goal is set. Ties may also be broken by his or her vote.
A Guildmaster’s mandate ends, when he or she retires, when he or she steps back, when the CoC replaces the Guildmaster in a constructive vote of distrust or closes a Guild Mastery, with a 2/3 majority, or when the GC decides to return a Guildmaster’s seat to the CoC for reallocation with a 3/4 majority.
As the Messers just recently demonstrated, people in positions of power tend to seize it, or to exploit the system they dominate for their personal benefit.
Therefore the miners decided to create an office with the sole purpose of preventing the corruption of their society.
They created the office of the “Guardian”, who has a seat in both the GC and the CoC, so that he/she knows what is going on in the decision making committees. What separates this office from others is that it has no vote in the GC and also may only vote in the CoC if he/she captains a ship.
The power of the “Guardian” office rests in its ability to veto all decisions that have been made by the GC and CoC, if the Guardian assumes they might harm the Guild.
To execute this power it is necessary that he/she may speak freely in both groups. This also helps to defuse tensions and to ensure constructive cooperation especially when it comes to potentially problematic jurisdiction.
This office would be useless if its holder could be legally removed, therefore a Guardian serves in his/her office for lifetime or until he/she steps down on their own free will.
To prevent any influence of the CoC or the GC on the appointment of a new Guardian, the departing Guardian provides a list of 12 (OOC 3) Guildmembers (captains or not) whom he/she deems suited for succession. The new Guardian may only be elected from this list and with a 2/3 majority in the CoC.
In case no decision is reached, the appointment process continues and no other decision may be made by the CoC until a new Guardian has been elected.
The Guardian has to revisit all decisions made in his/her absence and during the time without a Guardian before his/her election.
To ensure impartial jurisdiction, especially towards those in power, the members of the IMG created the “Table of Judges” (ToJ).
The ToJ is tasked with upholding the rules of the IMG and if necessary punish those who violate them.
Its members are elected like the members of the GC, with the only difference that they need a 2/3 majority to be elected, while a constructive vote of distrust needs a 3/4 majority.
Members of the GC (including the Guardian) enjoy diplomatic immunity while in office, but may be held responsible after their tenure.
The ToJ has to consist of at least 5 Guildmembers and may also return a Guildmaster’s and a Judge’s seat to the CoC for reallocation with a 4/5 majority.
Similar to the GC, the ToJ elects an Archjudge from their midst, whose vote breaks ties.
Elections of the CoC are only binding if at least one third of the electorate takes part in it, personally or holographically.
Votes of the GC are only of consequence if at least half the Guildmasters cast their vote.
Decisions of the ToJ have to be in person and at least 4/5 of the Judges have to partake.
In general, elections are not valid, if an amount, significant to the specific election, of those parts of the electorate, who supposedly have a different opinion, cannot attend the vote.
All those who partake in a venture, shall get paid fairly according to their participation. If they don’t survive a venture, their payment shall be handed in full to their next of kin.
Be excellent to each other and don’t drag the guild into trouble.
We try to be as democratic as possible.
The Guildmasters are the guys who donate their spare time for our organization, in order to create more fun for all of us. So please be nice to them. It’s the only reward they get for their work.
The Guardian is me, Clyde. I may not be as active as other members of the GC, therefore I will only assert authority, if absolutely necessary. I will have a friendly ear for your problems and I will take vigilant care to make sure that our guild retains its democratic structure.
Displaying bad behaviour will result in consequences, which will be decided upon when necessary.
We understand that not every member logs into Spectrum every day. Of course votes will not be up forever, as it would stall our decision making processes. We try to give everyone a chance to have their voices heard by giving reasonable time frames for discussions and votes, however at some point we act.
Everyone gets paid fairly. We have been flying support missions ourselves long enough to know how annoying it is to get only paid enough to survive.