Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Random Encounters: The Rulers of Worlds

Have you ever noticed that John Carter, no matter where he goes, meets the rulers and leaders? Tars Tarkas, Dejah Thoris, Tal Hadjus, the prince of Zadonga, The chief priest of the White Martians, the Queen of the Black Martians, the displaced king of the Yellow Martians. Everywhere, he's encountering the Nobility. Why does this not happen in my games? Earl Dumarest, interstellar wanderer and Traveller also runs into the high & mighty regularly. Dominic Flandry rubs shoulders with the rich & powerful all the time. 

Working from memory, the adventure anthology 76 Patrons has several Noble patrons. None are world-rulers or Dukes, but still, the concept of a Noble patron is well established.

So why is it that in all the years I've been playing Traveller, my PCs have never once met a Duke or a Count or King?  I can't say that I'm 'doing it wrong' but I surely have been missing out on a lot of adventure possibilities.
There is no reason why this outfit could not appear in Traveller. TL-4, anyone?
"So your Majesty. We hear you've got a little revolution problem. We can fix that for you."

 From the Wikipedia entry on Traveller:
Sociological: Interstellar society is socially stratified (high, mid, and low passage; SOC [Social Status] is a primary character attribute). Affairs are often managed by independent nobility, who make use of classic titles such as Baron, Duke and Archduke. The typical game shows how being a traveller crosses classes and breaks stratification.
Look at the Patron Lists, from The Traveller Book. You've got your criminal types (swindler, smuggler, terrorist, spy) and your ordinary citizens (scholar, courier, police, tourist) but you also have people with real power and authority: Diplomats, Naval Officers, Government Officials, Playboys, Governors, Doctors. Many of these could reasonably be nobility as well.