Gengfok's lack of any appreciable atmosphere leaves it in a perennial icebox
state. There are no gas giants in the system, but half the world is covered by
ice, thus providing its residents an easily accessible source of volatiles and
fuel. It wasn't until the Vilani developed two parsec jump technology that the
First Imperium colonized the system.
Although the asteroid belts provided plenty of usable ore for Sharusharid, the Bureau considered operating costs too high and sold mining leases to those belters who thought the system was worth the effort.
The world entered a prolonged depression with the fall of the First Imperium. Under the Second Imperium, Sharusharid was not permitted to operate as it once had and could not be counted on to subsidize operations at Gengfok. Once the Second Imperium collapsed, the lawlessness of the Long Night drove the belters away and the world shut down.
The world lay unclaimed for centuries. Corsairs and heavily armed belters were the few who would enter the system. Finally in 821, Dae Gengfok persuaded the Kedhnang Combine to provide protection to his small mining corporation in order to take advantage of the still unexploited resources within the system's three belts. He kept the operation small so as to minimize costs and named the world after himself.
After the Kedhnang Combine joined the Ngath Confederation, word got out that there was work to be had on Gengfok. While the opportunity present was exaggerated, it put the system's potential on the Confederation's radar. Eager to protect its natural resources, the Confederation constructed a naval base and began to recruit heavily from the mainworld. With their protection, a new Belter licensing program was established to exploit the system's asteroids. Gengfok hopes that the extra revenue and traffic will spur the upgrade of the starport to a B rating and provide capital for much needed technological investment.
Mining and ore refining continue to be the two top industries and have provided many jobs for working class vargr. While there aren't any environmental concerns, Gulius Gengfok has decreed that worker safety is important. However, the limitations of the local tech level makes for ingenuitive solutions and offworld imports of safety equipment. However, these considerations make life on this miserable world tolerable.
Ngudhae is a young world. Volcanoes are still quite active in building land
masses and bulking up the atmosphere. Yet half million people are brave enough
to eke out a living here. To those vargr and humans (5% of the population),
there is a treasure trove of mineralogical wealth to be had.
The geological instability has inhibited the development of infrastructure. As such it lies in a paltry state. The downport has room for only 1000 dtons of vessels on its landing platform. The governing bureaucracy is consumed with accounting for the excavated ores, making sure miners pay their share of export tax on said ore and mapping the latest archipelago to emerge from the sea. Permanent settlements are risky on the surface; undersea communities seem to be better suited to the tumultuous conditions.
Based on library data that appears in "The Flaming Eye"
There are many misperceptions about the Vargr among humans. One of them is that all corsairs are ruthless thugs. While it is true that many are, piracy in the Extents has been an honorable tradition. It is the hunt extrapolated to the space lanes. It has a romantic air to it, akin to the novels and movies about buccaneers of old Terra. While many have eschewed this path, the denizens of Ikhog prefer the traditional view of that occupation.
That isn't to say that the Ikhogians are all pirates. The opposite is the case. Ikhog's prosperity is the direct result of many successful business enterprises. It has a healthy manufacturing base but, to maintain its appeal to tourists, the nations have agreed to avoid the trap of rampant industrialization and abide by mutually agreed upon environmental regulations. As an added benefit, Ikhog's has a thriving agricultural industry. This diverse blend of corporate endeavors manifests itself in the uniquely vargr art and architecture which has blossomed over the years.
So the Ikhogians have taken to sponsoring several corsair bands who meet their strict criteria for personal conduct. These patrons live vicariously through these swashbucklers, savoring their tales of mischief. That isn't to say that all corsairs found on Ikhog are savory characters. It just may be that their cunning is such that they are able to keep their dark deeds hidden and they'll do anything to maintain that ruse rather than lose their adoring public.