Thesis/project Ochroia. I was influenced by conflict minerals and the dwindling resources of rare earths regarding production of electronics when coming up with an idea. A certain planet has a rumoured organic mineral called Xyarch that is based in myth.Mercenaries and mining corporations arrive on this planet to find and harvest this crystal tree, along with other minerals. Certain members of its population gain mysterious powers due to ingesting high concentration of this mineral in the water and food. The higher the contamination the better the chances, hence these often happen to be the peasants, though the rich have reprooduced these results in very controlled conditions. The catch is that members of the population regard the tree/crystals as objects of worship and attirbute these powers as being blessed, while researchers, the corporations and most of the upper crust suspect its due to an isolated factor. Three main factions are warring between letting the mining corps to continue their exacavation of the planet, reserving the use and sale of various minerals for themselves or to minimise and halt harvesting of the minerals.
It was going to be medieval/sci fi genre, which really means steampunk, but it ran away with itself.
uploading more soon