Thursday, April 30, 2015

Stop! In the Name of the Law! - Legal encounters in Traveller

I AM the Law!
I got to thinking a while back about bringing the forces of Law and Order into my Path of the Lioness campaign. Not because my boys are playing lawless characters, far from it, but because they've already been involved in a few situations where the Law should properly have appeared, and I left them in the background.  There are mysterious forces dogging the steps of my PCs, and sooner or later their going to need some official help. 

The Traveller Book, in the Encounters section, specifies that the referee roll once weekly for a Legal Encounter. Other than that, the play of the encounter is left to the referee to work out.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Planets of the Corridor - The Non-Aligned Planets

The non-Aligned planets are in dark red.

Dekalb Pro-LTP    B-885883-9 230 million people On Trade Route
Dekalb is the most populous planet in the Corridor, and leverages this against their technology lag compared with Stavanger or Lanzhou. The law level of 3 means that the bureaucracy doesn't pass a lot of 'laws', instead they pass 'regulations' on specific activities and industries. Dekalbian businesses may not be hampered by too much conscience, and so employ a lot of corporate espionage as well as hire mercenaries or pirates to deal with off-planet competition. The Sommersfield family is a particularly influential group in Dekalbian politics and business. Dekalb has a large population so they have to import food. Worosha is Dekalb's major supplier. Dekalb is TL9, so it produces the ships that make the J1 across. Besides, Dekalb owns large chunks of Worosha anyway, as already established. Dekalb sets the prices for food exports, and gives preferential treatment to Dekalb-owned farms. There are 7d ships in port at any one time.

Tabraz C-6678DB-6 No Trade Route
Tabrazians are highly xenophobic and insular. Off-worlders are not permitted past the starport zone. The religious dictatorship is run by clerics of the Church of Humanity Ascendant, who consider Tabraz to be the new Holy Land; but only members of their sect are permitted to stand on the holy ground. Tabraz spawns a lot of pirates ('Tabrazian Raiders' who are all fanatical followers) The religious leaders would like to directly control Pampati, but hesitate as it would complicate control of the local populace – limiting exposure with the outside. Despite its reputation, there are 6d ships in port at any one time.

Tagus D-12045C-10 No Trade Route
Off the trade routes, at the end of a J-1 string, with a poor starport, thin atmosphere and little water, Tagus is a backwater. The technocratic government is reasonably efficient, but there's so little to recommend Tagus to outsiders that they're perpetually at the mercy of foreign importers. The Tagan government is willing to consider any scheme that might draw some trade to their world. They have recently begun an expensive experiment in importing sources of water to create some arable land for agricultural use. There are 1d ships in port at any one time.

Tartarus Independent X-600000- 0 No Trade Route
Tartarus is a planetoid belt system, but its most distinguishing feature is it's binary star pair. The binary is a black hole. Radiation and the enormous gravity of the black hole make navigating the system very dangerous; however ships occasionally enter the system, usually to visit one small gas giant for refueling. The planetoid belt has little to recommend it; most of the more massive bits (like metal chunks) has already been pulled into the black hole.

There are three charted but officially unpopulated systems in the Corridor subsector. Instead of names, the Stellar Cartography division of the Royal Talaveran Scout Corps designates these systems by alpha-numeric strings. None of the power blocs of the Corridor have any declared settlements or bases in these systems. They are not regularly patrolled, so there may be undiscovered settlements or pirate bases.

TV-908 Ungoverned X-532000
TV-311 Ungoverned X-8A8000
TX-318 Ungoverned X-S00000

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Did you see this issue of Freelance Traveller?

The January 2013 issue of Freelance Traveller, the free online magazine supporting all Traveller rules, published an article that I wrote! A while back I put a post on the Citizens of the Imperium discussion board with a alternate career option of School. The editor of FT saw it and asked me to submit it for the magazine. I did, although I admit that I took a long time getting around to it, and the editor had to add & clarify a few things, but they still gave me all the credit for it.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Classic Traveller Ship Builder

Building starships is one of the many fun 'solo' activities in Traveller. The Bk2 system is fast, simple and reasonably flexible, so you can crank out ships in just minutes.  Now you can go even faster with Matt"s CT Ship Designer!

Features include:
  • Bk 2 and Bk 5 (High Guard) designs
  • standard and custom hull sizes
  • Small craft design sequence
  • civilian staterooms or troop carrier accomodations
  • A 'payload' section with custom interior features like workshops and vehicles
  • Error report tells you what you need to fix

Sample Ship: 400 tn TL 12 Liner/Mail Packet

Regina Shuffle
400 ton, TL 12 Civilian Design, 158.79 MCr
10 crew (Command: 1+1, Engineer: 0+1, Gunners: 1+1, Stewards: 1+3, Medic: 0+1)

Agility 0, Emergency Agility 2
| ___.__ | _20.00 | _.__ | standard hull, streamlined , fuel scoops
| _20.00 | __2.00 | _.__ | bridge
| __3.00 | _18.00 | 1.00 | 1 x computer model 3
| __2.00 | __9.00 | _.__ | 1 x computer back up model 2
| _25.00 | _40.00 | _.__ | drive jump #2
| __7.00 | _16.00 | _.__ | drive maneouver #2
| _13.00 | _32.00 | _.__ | power plant #2
| __5.00 | ___.__ | _.__ | reserved drive space
| _20.00 | ___.__ | _.__ | fuel, PP endurance 4 weeks (8 weeks powered down)
| _80.00 | ___.__ | _.__ | fuel, jump range 2 parsecs
| __1.00 | __0.75 | _.__ | 1 x sand caster turret #4
| __1.00 | __2.00 | 2.00 | 1 x beam laser (mixed turret) turret #2
| 140.00 | _17.50 | _.__ | 35 x staterooms
| _15.00 | __1.50 | _.__ | 30 x low berths
| _43.00 | ___.__ | _.__ | 43 tons cargo capacity
| __5.00 | ___.__ | _.__ | 1 x 5 ton Mail
| _20.00 | __0.04 | _.__ | 1 x 20 ton Launch
| 400.00 | 158.79 | 3.00 EP used, PP generates 8.0 EPs

160.38 MCr for first ship in class, built in 64 weeks
127.03 MCr when built in volume, built in 52 weeks
CT Ship Designer by Matt. Visit

Monday, April 20, 2015

Planets of the Corridor - Stavanger and its Allies

Stavanger and its allies are in blue.

Stavanger Independent B-361851-12 On Trade Route TE/LTP
See the previous post on Stavanger for details. Here's the most significant detail: Stavanger is the 7th largest economy in the galaxy
That's right. This little planet is up there in shouting distance of The Big Four in economic clout. This is something that Stavanger is going to protect no matter what. 
In addition to its far greater economic power, Stavanger has a distinct tech advantage over its ally worlds. They are major export destinations for Stavangerian goods, including military tech. Stavangerian military and economic advisers are a common sight on allied worlds. There are 7d6 ships in port at any one time. 

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Non-humans in the Church in the Far Future?

I recently had a question put to me by a member over at the Citizens of the Imperium discussion board. He wanted to know whether I saw non-humans/aliens becoming part of the Orthodox Church in the Far Future. And that's a good question. 

I wish I had a good answer. 

Here's what I wrote in reply to the message:

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Infographic of the Day: Ocean Worlds

NASA says that our solar system has many bodies that have surface or sub-surface water. Some water is liquid but much of it is ice. Jupiter's moon Ganymede may even have a salt-water ocean beneath its surface! 

Infographic: Ocean Worlds

Traveller referees, this is a new way to interpret the Hydrographic code of the Universal World Profile (UWP).  Any Hydrographic code above zero indicates the presence of water on a world, but it doesn't say that all of that water has to be on the surface!  There could be vast subterranean oceans of liquid water, even on worlds where the Atmospheric code indicates tainted or dangerous atmospheres. This could help explain why there are populated worlds with Corrosive atmospheres - the inhabitants live underground, and extract minerals from the ice or water below the surface.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Look Out! Here come Motivated Villains 2 & 3

Social Acceptance and Madness

The first post and series explanation is here. In one sentence, I'm creating villains whose motivation falls outside the usual acquisition of money & power or revenge. In two sentences, one villain is motivated by the desire for social acceptance, and the other by the voices inside his head.

The Loser

Ranjit Lloyd-Kurnikov 8677AD Age 34 Army General Cr 2,000,000+

Gambling-2, Medical-1, Carousing-3, Gun Cbt-2, Admin-1, Hunting-1

I am the very model of a modern major general!