Interplanetary travel gates, known as "WarpGates", were massive pieces of a technology that utilized space-time manipulation to create controlled worm-holes through which large objects, such as star ships, could safely travel extreme distances in an instant. These gates are massive and float near the planet's that built them, with space stations and ship docks near, that govern immigration and tickets to other planets. There are limitations. In order to build a end point gate, one must be able to physically travel there first to build it.
History of the WarpGates
Researched in the 22nd Century, these massive gates along with their control and monitoring stations were constructed near each planet within the Sol System for fast travel between worlds. The first WarpGate to be built, named "Orion," was located in Earth orbit. Orion Gate initially shared an exclusive connection to Gyum, the Mars gate, which was the only other gate in the network at the time. The Isis station was constructed to act as the control and monitoring station tasked with orchestrating travel between these first gates. But later became a hub world for the rich and powerful, and EarthGOV headquarters, who control the gate and immigration.
Gates were produced near major colonization zones and linked together, creating the first space travel network known as "SpaceNet." Once completed, the gate network provided an interplanetary superhighway of sorts that made travel between the planets a relatively quick and tidy affair; our solar system effectively became a relatively small place. Using SpaceNet a traveler could book travel from one orbiting space port to the next with each space port acting much like a modern day airport for the planet that it was located near.
Gate travel saw an exponentially rise in demand as the Earth began its slow demise. The ease of travel to distant locations was vital to the survival of the human race during this period of global collapse as a bulk of humanity left the dying planet in order to colonize other planets and moons within the solar system.
The average ticket price for gate travel was 50,000,000 credits for a mere one way trip aboard a registered ship passing through the gates.
"The Gate Incident"
During the first Galactic War there was a massive naval stand off over ownership and control of the Earth's "Orion" gate that eventually erupted into a massive battle. During the fighting Orion was heavily damaged causing parts of the structure to be jettisoned through space. A few of the very large fragments collided with the Moon, destroying portions of the Moon as well as the colonies there. Other large bits of gate debris, along with debris from the shattered Moon fell to Earth to catastrophic effect. In short order the Earth suffered a shift in it's poles that wrecked the climate, radically changing it. This cataclysmic event was directly responsible for the creation of EarthGOV which was tasked with rebuilding the Earth and creating the Earth-side colonies for the survivors.
WarpGates and the Failure of Warp Drives
As technology advanced, different races began to construct "Warp Drives", that were designed to render WarpGates obsolete. These drives can propel ships at light speed, unlike WarpGates, which create wormholes to instantly take a vessle from one point to another, however Warp Drives are a new technology still in it's infancy and is extremely expensive to produce and maintain. Few ships other than military vessels have them, thus, most people still rely on Warp Gates, which in recent years have hiked their prices for use, making interplanetary travel or just leaving Earth almost impossible for those that aren't extremely wealthy.
While Warp Drives are regarded as technology that failed, it is still advancing rapidly and has alot of potential once the tech obtains stability and a fuel source is discovered that is able to propel ships outside the solar system safely. Once this happens, we will enter a new space race and discover other planets and solar systems, however, the technology is just not ready yet, not even with advanced MagiTEK warp drives. Leaving the solar system right now is impossible, Warp Gates require a gate to be built on each side first before the connection can be made, so while WarpGates can preform this task, we first must be able to get there.