Nimbus III is a Class L planet located along the Federation, Klingon, and Romulan borders. It was first discovered in the early 23rd century and was regarded as a desert world with few resources. Its only value was its strategic location between three major galactic powers.
The Decipher RPG module: Worlds lists the planet as being located in the Alpha Quadrant, while all other sources place Nimbus in the Nimbus sector of Tau Dewa sector block, squarely in the Beta Quadrant.
Initially mapped by the Federation in 2247, it became a rare example of cooperation, as all three powers (the Federation, Klingon and Romulan empires) established a colony on the planet in 2267. Christened as the "Planet of Galactic Peace", if Nimbus III proved a success, it was thought that it could very well change the politics in the Alpha Quadrant. (TOS movie, novelization & comic adaptation: Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, Decipher RPG module: Worlds)
- Note: VAN novel: Precipice contradicts this by showing Ambassador Jetanien, the architect of the first trilateral talks on the planet, present on Nimbus III in late 2267 when talks were just getting underway.
Representatives from the three powers, ran the colony from its capital, Paradise City, and all the inhabitants of the colony were volunteers from the three powers and moved to the colony on agreement that weapons were banned, in the interest of peace and co-operation. (TOS movie, novelization & comic adaptation: Star Trek V: The Final Frontier).
The Federation funded the colonization effort in the beginning as a sign of good faith. Nevertheless, while Federation staff had high hopes for the planet, the Klingon and Romulan governments treated Nimbus III as a dumping ground for malcontents. As the colony showed signs of failure, the Federation reduced its personnel to two members of Starfleet and a handful of staff. Lacking a spaceport, the planet failed to attract further colonists and, instead, became a sleazy backwater of a world. (Decipher RPG module: Worlds)
The planet's first contribution to history was as a base of operation for Sybok, a Vulcan seeking Heaven and contact with the divine. By the later 23rd and early 24th centuries, the Federation had almost forgotten about the colony which proved a mistake as it was later rumored that the Romulans had used Nimbus III as a secret base from which to launch their attack on the Klingon colony of Khitomer. The coming of the year 2295 saw the Federation, Klingons and Romulans all abandon the "'planet of galactic peace' project." (TOS novelization: Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, Decipher module: Worlds, Last Unicorn RPG module: All Our Yesterdays: The Time Travel Sourcebook)
By the late 24th century the Federation's attention returned to Nimbus III and a decision was made to invest more resources into the colony; however, the outbreak of the Dominion War detracted the Federation's efforts. By the end of the war in 2375 what few colonists had called the planet home had abandoned it. (Decipher RPG module: Worlds)
By 2409 the Orion Syndicate dominated the planet, led by Hassan the Undying, who had turned the planet into his personal fiefdom. The Tal Shiar were also reported to be active. (STO mission: "Secrets of Nimbus")
That year a starship from one of the region's major governments arrived in orbit tracking thalaron triggers through the black market. In their efforts to locate the triggers they made contact with a local named Horace Jones, who helped them develop contacts in the area, including an elderly Romulan peace officer named Law. (STO missions: "Secrets of Nimbus", "The Lost City of Paradise", "Blind Men Tell All Tales")
The captain made a number of humanitarian efforts to gain the trust of the locals, including constructing replicators and deploying away teams as a show of force to the criminal elements, before attacking Hassan's stronghold northeast of the city. Hassan beamed to his orbiting starship in an attempt to escape but the government vessel attacked, and with the help of a number of anti-Syndicate space pirates captured or killed him. (STO missions: "Blind Men Tell All Tales", "The Undying")
With order largely restored, the captain resumed tracking the thalaron triggers, which led them to a Tal Shiar facility east of the city. The triggers had already been acquired by Obisek of the Reman Resistance, but the crew were able to rescue a number of imprisoned Nimbosians upon whom the Tal Shiar were experimenting. They then transmitted a fake message that lured a fleet led by Colonel Hakeev to the planet and into a trap. Hakeev escaped but the rest of the fleet was destroyed with help from several pirate ships. (STO mission: "Installation 18")
Nimbus III was dominated by one large continent which possessed little surface water beyond stagnant pools. Moreover, as the planet lacked tidal forces, there was little rain to replenish the few traces of surface water. The planet's one continent did have several mountain ranges although most peaks had been eroded due to a lack of geological activity.
The average temperature on Nimbus III was quite high and rarely dropped below 25 degrees Celsius in areas such as the badlands. Most humanoids found the climate unpleasant with the exception of Vulcans. (Decipher RPG module: Worlds)