– The Crystal Palace's slogan, Cyberpunk 2077
While the European Space Agency technically owns the Crystal Palace, it is in fact used by all space-capable nations, each of which maintains an embassy on the Palace for its nationals. Living space is leased by the ESA to the highest bidders on a twenty year renewable basis. In turn, the ESA maintains emergency services, general security, and station upkeep.
Police services and law enforcement are the exclusive province of Interpol; the intra-European police organization, under an agreement with the ESA, reserves the right of judicial power over criminal offenses.
2000 - 2010s
In 2000, the European Space Agency begun the construction of what became known as the Crystal Palace at a cost of 7 billion eurodollars. Due to the First Corporate War of 2005, the construction was delayed.
In 2009, a USA "terrorist group" tried to take over the space station, but failed. Eventually, the ESA discovered who was behind the attack, uncovering the American Defense Intelligence Agency plot, and decided to drop a five-ton rock off the coast of Washington, D.C. as a warning. Finally, in 2011, the Palace opened its doors, giving the ESA a permanent hold in the high Earth orbit.
In early 2020s, the Palace was rumored to be the home of The Angels; a group of at least twelve individuals, each one an elite martial artist, whom were considered the best solos ever. It was from the Palace were they would fall upon their targets. Despite all this, no records of them ever existing were found, but only the words of a number of harsh prominent solos, who are not inclined in believing in such tales.
During the Fourth Corporate War, in late September of 2022, a killsat artillery strike fired at the orbital habitant in the Crystal Palace, seemingly by accident. Three Highriders intercepted the projectiles and died protecting the station.
Later that year, the ESA ordered delta jets on the Crystal Palace to destroy several "suspicious" orbital facilities. At the same time the US and Soviets were doing similar things on other parts of the globe. Despite the order to not attack assets belonging to other nations, a mistake was done and all three nations began to destroy every facility they could find, no matter whom it belong. Once the orbital war finished, many satellites and space facilites had been destroyed, but the Crystal Palace endured.
By 2077, the Palace had already become the most famous space station orbiting the Earth, and the most expansive too. Still owned by the European Space Agency, the Palace offeres a great variety of services and it includes a number of recreational facilities like casinos, hotels or restaurants. All this made the orbital station gain the the nickname: "The Las Vegas of Space."
Anyone of importance in Earth's orbit, plus the wealthiest corporations, all have leased space in the Crystal Palace.
The Crystal Palace is a five toroidal ring structure built around a large core extending for almost two kilometers through the center of the station. Each ring has a radius of 2.2 kilometers. The three central rings are entirely enclosed, while the two outer rings have two-meter thick leaded-glass windows to permit light to enter.
The torroids are protected from hard radiation by a thick shield of lunar rock. As with most space-borne equipment, all hardware on the Palace is hardened against EMP. The torroids spin at sufficient rotation to provide 0.8 G at the rim, dropping about 0.1 G for every 275 meters of altitude towards the hub.
Inside each inner torus are four levels of living facilities, manufacturing plants, life support systems, and apartment blocks. The two outer torroids support huge open parks; they are not only for recreation, but also provide the bulk of the Palace's oxygen supply. While most of this area is devoted to open space, there are common buildings, restaurants, and housing for high ranking corporate and European Space Agency officials.
The Palace's public areas are bewitching, full of green and including real trees. The residents have the best looks money can buy, something the station workers cannot afford.
- The Black Hole
Database Entry (2077)
- Everyone's heard of the Crystal Palace, but few have actually stepped foot inside. The majority of Night Citizens mostly just search for it in the sky since in fact it's a gigantic space station catering to the top one percent. It boasts everything from casinos, restaurants, low-gravity pools and luxury apartments to panoramic viewing rooms of Earth and outer space, concert venues, a hotel, a park and of course, conference halls for corporate clients. In other words, a city in the sky, equipped with the newest technology and sponsored by Orbital Air, among other entities. Whoever steps off the shuttle to the Crystal Palace and loses themselves in one of its many attractions can safely declare they've made it to the top.
Crystal Palace's 2077 pamphlet
During the Path of Glory epilogue quest, a man will give V a pamphlet about the Crystal Palace. This pamphlet can be found on one of the seats of Rogue Amendiares' booth in the Afterlife at any time though. Due to its low resolution, it may be quite difficult to distinguish what it says.
THE CRYSTAL PALACE
- FEEL ALIVE IN THE DEAD OF SPACE!
- After docking at one of the Crystal Palace boarding bridges, passengers disembark and enter the palace - that is, a gigantic space station. This ESA-owned construction is made up of five ring-like levels (each measuring around 2 km in diameter) rotating around the station's central core. Inside the inner "rings," one can find living quarters, a support system, a factory and workshops.
- The outer rings house vast green spaces (used not only for a little rest and relaxation but also to produce much of the Palace's oxygen), apartments for high-ranking ESA officials and corporate CEO's as well as recreational facilities; including casinos, hotels and restaurants. Not for nothing is the Cristal Palace renowned "The Las Vegas of Space"!
- In the lower part of the Palace, the station's vast solar arrays spread like sails, while its fuel tanks hang like ballast.
- Anyone who's anyone in space, plus all the most important corporations, all lease space in the Crystal Palace.
- PONDSMITH, M. Deep Space. 1st ed., Berkeley, CA, R. Talsorian Games, 1993. (pg.5-8, 63-65, 68)
- PONDSMITH, M Near Orbit. 1st ed., Berkeley, CA, R. Talsorian Games, 1989.
- Countdown to the Dark Future (#307, #41, #146, #249, #251)
- PONDSMITH, M. Cyberpunk RED Corebook. 1st ed., Kenmore, WA, R. Talsorian Games, 2020.
- CD Projekt RED. Cyberpunk 2077. Video Game, Multi-Platform. Poland, CD Projekt S.A., 2020.
- Crystal Palace pamphlet