Panzer Dragoon's Planet Theory
If the Panzer Dragoon series isn't set on Earth, then where is it set? Here is a theory regarding another world that Panzer Dragoon could be set on, also explaining how the ancients might have got there.
It is thought, by most Panzer Dragoon fans, that the Panzer universe takes place on a future Earth. It would make sense for this to happen, as it in many ways resembles the traditional post-apocalyptic landscape that we are used to seeing in fiction, both written and visual (movies).
It was recently pointed out to me, however, by Lord Craymen of the panzer-dragoon.de forum (the Excavation Camp) that when you are playing Episode 1 of the first Panzer Dragoon, you can see two moons in the sky. I have not verified this myself, but I think it would explain a lot of things. Why? Because from the simple fact that there are two moons to the Panzer world, the planet at which they take place on cannot be said to be Earth, but rather of another planet.
Yeah, I know it sounds weird. But let us look at a number of factors.
Phobos, one of Mars' two moons (image from Wikipedia).
The moons thing is the first of many characteristics of the Panzer world that resemble Mars. Mars has two moons, Phobos and Deimos. No other planet that humanity has studied (Planet X not included) has two moons. There are other factors as well, however.
First off, the Tower network, constructed by the ancients. It has been said, by Craymen (Panzer Dragoon Saga, Disc 3) that the Tower’s revitalise the world, and keep it hospitable by humans no matter how much we abuse and rape it’s resources. Why would this be needed if the Panzer world was one with an atmosphere, and an otherwise hospitable eco-system?
Of course, the wild card must be entered, The Empire. The Empire are the biggest waste of resources in the Panzer Universe, so it could be said they are the single cause of the eco-system being thrown out of whack. Surely, however, an Imperial Fleet cannot be taken this seriously. If the command fleet, seen in Panzer Dragoon Saga, was mostly Stingers and Raiders, which are light aircraft which do not look like they require much fuel compared to Enforcer or Gunship craft, then the Empire themselves could not need much fuel, especially as the heavy-powered ships such as Battle cruisers and Warships are classified as “rare”. Look at the Imperial Capital in Panzer Dragoon 1, bearing in mind that it took place just before Saga, and you’ll see that in Episode 6, the Imperial Capital has clothes lines hanging out, meaning they do not have access to the equivalent of tumble dryers, so they are either poor (yet living in a capital city, not likely) or are trying to save energy for the “war effort” (Britain in WW2 is a good example of this). If the latter is true, then this means that the Capital, likely to be the biggest city in the Empire, saves much of it’s energy. Therefore, the Empire cannot, logically, be the biggest drain of resources.
A low orbit shot of Mars (image from Wikipedia).
Therefore the Towers may be concluded as creators of an artificial atmosphere, a fake Ozone Layer, if you will, that keeps humanity alive. This may have been a design of the ancients, who were the first to colonize Mars, possibly following that asteroid that’s going to be damned near us in 19 years time.
Of course, if this theory is wrong, then that means Sestren is alive, despite what we saw at the end of Panzer Dragoon Saga. As Orta (the X-Box Panzer game) takes place after Saga, then it can be assumed that the world is still alive. Yet the Empire are still going, still taking up resources. The Towers cannot be dormant, otherwise the Panzer world, and it’s inhabitants, would be dead.
Another atmospheric conundrum is that of the monsters. In many Panzer games, the monsters are biomechanical creatures, often composed of excessive armour as well as minimal organic parts. Are the monsters machines? They cannot be, as the dragons were created at the same time and place as the monsters, and it is all but confirmed they are not machines. They have feelings towards their riders, so it is extremely unlikely that they aren’t. The monsters are, according to Craymen, the caretakers of the world, which is logically a 24 hour job, so therefore they need the armour to keep themselves alive in all climates and temperatures. On Mars, the temperature is very hot during the day, but very cool during the night. The armour of the monsters could act as a “pullover” during the night, keeping their bodies warm. This would not be necessary on Earth, as the temperature stays pretty much the same whether it is night or day.
Were the canals on Mars built? (image from NASA)
There is also the landscape to consider. Looking at the valley in Panzer Dragoon Saga, it can be seen that it resembles in many ways the “canals” on Mars that scientists have been theorising about for a long time. It is said that these “canals” carried water for a Martian civilisation, from the precious poles. No life, however, has been found on Mars, or indeed any evidence of life being there in the first place. The valley is far north on the Saga map. This means that it could be very near the poles, which would also explain the U-shape of the valley. A u-shaped valley is a geographical feature caused by a glacier plucking (pulling the rock off of) the walls and floor of a normal V-shaped valley. The fact that the only water seen in the valley is at the top suggests that the Canyon Deep Gulch was as far as the glacier got before it melted into normal water. For this to be the case, as it really is a very small distance, then the climate would have to be one which rapidly warms and cools repeatedly, a description that resembles Mars very well.
All in all, there is a very good case for Panzer Dragoon taking place on Mars.