Hello! I'm new to the forum, so I apologize if I seem noobish.
I've been following the development of SF:EH for a while now, and I'm flabbergasted by the amazing effort put into it. It's looking fantastic.
I wanted to share my theory on the layout of the Lylat System. It's pretty different from what the SF:EH website implies and also covers game concepts that have probably changed over time, so bear with me.
---Map vs Actual Orbits
One thing that a lot of fan-made maps try to do is base the Lylat System's orbits strictly on their apparent positioning in the in-game maps. I don't think the in-game maps are an accurate representation of this and merely fit together the way they do for the sake of mission progression, although some progressions do vaguely imply certain positioning.
---Visuals vs Actual Orbits
A planet being visible from another doesn't necessarily mean that it inhabits the next orbit over, as is the case with Fichina being visible in the Orbital Gate mission above Corneria in SF: Assault. The only clear-cut canon labels Corneria the fourth planet and Fortuna the fifth (different from the SF:EH Fortuna orbit), meaning Fichina is only closer to Corneria in this timeframe due to its position in its orbit. I have reason to believe that Fichina is actually the seventh planet of the system, which will be explained towards the end of this.
Of course, realistically speaking, planets being close enough to be that visible from each other would play havoc with orbits and tidal forces anyway, so the whole reason it's a thing is for the eye candy.
---Inconsistencies in Arwingpedia
Arwingpedia hasn't been a very reliable source. For example: it labels Macbeth the third planet, but then immediately after says that it "orbits closer to the sun than any other planet," which would make it the first. It also states that Lylat (Lylat Prime in SF:EH) is a blue giant, yet provides a stellar class of "BV4," the "V" implying that it's a main-sequence star. Actual blue giants are given the roman numeral "III."
---Sauria's Shared Orbit
This whole concept, while considered canonical, doesn't make sense. If Sauria and Corneria really share the same orbit, they could both be considered the "fourth planet of Lylat." It's an inconsistency in the lore that's always bugged me, so my own map remedies this.
To be fair, Sauria being on "the opposite side of Lylat from Corneria" could mean any number of things, especially since an orbit around a blue giant star at a more-or-less habitable distance would take around 70 Earth years to complete.
---Solar; Star, Planet, or Something Else?
Generally speaking, Solar only makes sense as a molten planet given the obvious surface of what appears to be lava spitting up rocks and the solid islands across it. This isn't to say that there isn't a red dwarf companion star to Lylat Prime; it's almost certainly the case that there's a second (maybe even third or even fourth) star in the system.
I had my own theory for a while that Solar was actually a very cool white dwarf with the X,Y, and Z nebulae being its planetary nebulae. White dwarf stars are stellar remnants that slowly cool over time, eventually turning solid. The issue is that the universe is supposedly too young for a white dwarf to have cooled to anywhere near this point, but it's no less far-fetched than life sprouting up around a short-lived blue giant. Other fans have suggested that Solar is a brown dwarf, although this would imply that it should look like a blistering hot version of Bespin from Star Wars.
Bottom line, Lylat is definitely a multiple star system regardless of what Solar is. I suspect that Solar was originally intended to be a star and just had a last-minute lore swap similar to the Fortuna-Fichina mix-up. In my own theory, I've divided Solar into two separate objects: Solar, a red dwarf star, and Slaga, a molten planet heated by the intense magnetism of a nebula.
---Misidentified or Obscure Planets and/or Stars
This is based on an older SF:EH post about the Lylat System, so some of this has likely changed.
The planet visible behind Fortuna in SF: Assault isn't actually Katina; it's Titania, as evident by the rings and lack of clouds. The object off to the side that's only visible in the cutscenes during this mission doesn't look like Macbeth; it's simply Fortuna's moon. This means that Fortuna's orbit isn't necessarily relative to Macbeth's, making the canon description of Fortuna being the fifth planet consistent. This would also imply that Titania is a more distant planet, most likely the sixth. Titania could have a slow rotation, meaning it would still have a hot and cold extreme despite being a more distant planet.
There's a blueish planet visible from the surface of Katina. This could simply be a moon in blue lighting, but the color contrast and overall texture makes me suspect that it's Aquas. This means Aquas and Katina are more than likely orbital neighbors, and I would consider Katina the second planet and Aquas the third, at least where biomes are realistically concerned.
The reddish planet visible from the surface of Fichina in SF: Assault could simply be a moon or it could be Titania in darker lighting, although there aren't any rings visible. However, the planet being Titania would further imply that Titania is the sixth planet and Fichina is the seventh.
The cracked planet with what appears to be lava rivers in the Sargasso mission is almost certainly Macbeth, orbiting what is clearly Lylat's red dwarf companion (whether it be Solar or a separate object). Macbeth was always primarily volcanic with complicated cracks and caves in the lore. This confirms that Sargasso is separate from Meteo and that Macbeth can't be the first or the third planet of the Primary Lylat System; it's the first planet of the Solar Subsystem.
The reddish planet visible from the surface of Sauria has the texture of a gas giant. It's possible that this could be a more obscure planet like Kew.
The biggest thing here is a real headscratcher of a detail. Throughout the games, there have been several different appearances of stars, furthering the theory that it's a binary system regardless of whether Solar is that second star or just a molten planet. However, aside from a blue and a red star, there's been a yellow-white star that has been visible at times. A lot of people say that it's just another version of Lylat or Solar, but I'm not convinced, especially since the background of the in-game map in SF: Zero clearly shows three stars in the background (possibly even four); a blue one, a red one, and a whitish one (possibly another white one as well).
All of this in mind, I think Zoness is the first planet, having always been a hot and stormy ocean greenhouse planet with only the polar regions being comfortable vacation resorts... before Andross crapped all over it, of course.
---Venom's Existential Crisis
This planet has gone through all kinds of design changes. First it was totally barren with no water or other liquids besides lava, then it had acid seas, and finally it was nothing more than a planetoid turned into a teleportation device. Again, I made my own split interpretation of this.
---Finally, a Slapped-Together Theory
By combining realism, inconsistent lore, numerous fan theories, and fan-made content, I think I've come up with the most overthought and complicated map of Lylat... ever, really. It's assumed that Lylat resides within the Milky Way galaxy given the recent team-up between StarFox and Starlink.
I also went ahead and made planets like Cerinia part of Lylat instead of being in another galaxy, although they do have their own star.
Bear in mind, objects labeled with a periapsis and an apoapsis have inclined orbits, meaning they pass safely above and below the orbits of planets on the main orbital plane.
- UndyingNephalim (duh)
Objects are listed closest to furthest from their host stars.Lylat Prime - B-Type Blue Giant Star
Area 6 - Occupied Colony (Astropolis is the main satellite)
Corax - Mineral Planet (periapsis)
Zoness - Ocean Greenhouse Planet
Katina - Semiarid Planet
Aquas - Ocean Planet (amphibian homeworld)
Corneria - Temperate Planet (canine, vulpine, feline, etc. homeworld)
Area 3 - Station Colony
Meteo Asteroid Belt
Rhea - Radioactive Planet (periapsis)
Fortuna - Primordial Planet (reptilian and primate homeworld)
Titania - Desert Planet
Grippia - Dwarf Planet
Fichina - Frozen Planet
Rhea - Radioactive Planet (apoapsis)
Omicron Nebula + Slaga - Molten Planet (metal-based life homeworld) (periapsis)
Volus - Gas Giant + Beid - Ice-Encrusted Ocean Moon + Kuann - Hydrocarbon Moon
Omicron Nebula + Slaga - Molten Planet (metal-based life homeworld) (apoapsis)
Corax - Mineral Planet (apoapsis)
Freo - Ice Giant + Cryona - Cryogenic Moon (boron-based life homeworld) + Kelva - Captured Comet
Meteor Base - Planetoid
Venom - Mechanized Planetoid + Omega Rift - Artificial Wormhole + Bolse Station
Gamma (Y), Zeta (Z), and Chi (X) Nebulae
Krazonis SubsystemSolar - M-Type Main-Sequence Star
Sargasso Asteroid Belt
Macbeth - Volcanic Planet
Eladard - Runaway Greenhouse Planet
Papetoon - Frontier Planet
Tian - Independent Planet (avian homeworld)
Colossus - Taiga Planet
Delta NebulaKrazonis - F-Type Main-Sequence Star
Shardria - Glass Planet
Wuxia - Wildland Planet
Cerinia - Transdimensional Planet (Krazoa homeworld) + Geoda - Crystal Moon
Animus - Tundra Planet
Kew - Gas Giant + Draconis - Saline Moon + Thosa - Forest Moon
Sauria - Transdimensionally Terraformed Planet (dinosaur homeworld)
Mysteria Asteroid BeltTyran - A-Type White Dwarf Star (outside of Lylat System)
Corrosia - Volcanic Greenhouse Planet (silicon-based life homeworld)
Venomia - Caustic Planet (Anglar homeworld; the original planet Venom)
Oara - Harsh Ocean Planet
Argran - Ice-Encrusted Ocean Planet
Hypermass - Planetary-Mass Black Hole
Illumino Nebula Belt
Furas - T-Type Brown Dwarf + Alios - Volcanic Moon + Satoru and Iwata - Binary Moons + Sigma Nebula
Omega Rift - Artificial Wormhole (links system to Lylat)
I'm actually sketching these out as pixel art using Powder Toy (as JMBuilder) if anyone else has an account on that. I'm also working on a theory for the Banor System, which UndyingNephalim briefly name-dropped during the SF:EH Fichina mission.
I've got all sorts of smaller theories about this layout if you're interested. Please share your thoughts and/or critiques.