The homeworld of the Bactarans is a large moon of the gas giant Martok. The world gets a similar amount of heat from its sun as Earth does, but the additional heat radiating from the gas giant, as well as tidal forces from Martok's gravity, warms the moon well above the temperature of Earth, while equalizing the temperature somewhat across the moon. Aside from the amount of light, the difference between day and night, or equator and poles, is minimal. A chilly day on Bactara is about 40ºC, while some parts of the moon reach 60–80ºC, all of which the Bactarans are equipped to survive longterm. Most of the temperature variation that does exist is due to frequent eclipses by the planet, which increase in frequency during two "seasons" a year—day-long eclipses lower the surface temperature of the moon to as low as 20ºC (about room temperature for humans). The moon is tidally locked to Martok; the planet-facing side is usually a few degrees warmer than the outer side, except during the eclipses, when it is the coldest region. Bactara is midway in size between Earth and Mars. Between this and an orbital neighborhood rich in targets for both landing and gravity assistance, Bactarans have an easier time than humans in lifting off from their world. Bactara is a densely populated, bustling world. A century before first contact it was devastated by war, but in the intervening years most of the moon has recovered, along with the population and civilization. The feudal House society leads to many small towns, most of them walled—each consisting primarily (if not exclusively) of members of a particular House. Interspersed among these small towns are a smaller number of massive cities, which are freely accessible to any friendly House. The Martoki religious house is the most prominent house in the planet-facing region, and many religious holidays are based around the eclipses of Martok. Several wealthy (and spacefaring) houses compete for the leading and trailing sides of the moon (either side is beneficial for space launches, and the temperate climate helps makes the land fertile). On the far side of the moon is the Land of Moti, a cold, barren wasteland made worse in Korzof's war.
The Land of Moti
A region of Bactara on the far side from the gas giant it orbits, Martok. Following Korzof's war, a large section of Bactara was rendered unusable for many purposes, such as farmland. As punishment for their role in the horrors of the war, the House of Moti's fertile lands were seized, and the wasteland given to the Moti instead. Radiation has subsided somewhat, but it remains nearly impossible to farm the land. It is still moderately useful for mining, and so in recent generations, the Moti have begun to do just that. The most religious House, which worships Martok, considers this region to be cursed due to its distance from Martok. The reality is not far off; part of its troubles are due to the lack of thermal radiation from the gas giant, making the land cold (by Bactaran standards) and inhospital to most of the animal life which Bactaran crops symbiotically depend on. During the Expansion Era, it is discovered that Earth-native crops can be grown here without much issue and can alleviate some (though not all) of the Moti's nutritional needs. Following this discovery, and subsequent trading of crops, the region begins to recover both ecologically and economically.