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Midnight in a Perfect World: A Mongoose Traveller Campaign

Discussion in 'Forum Games' started by Sonereal, Feb 11, 2019.

  1. Sonereal

    Sonereal ♫We got the guillotine♫ Supporter

    Joined:
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    Enjoy your stay.
    This thread is for my Midnight in a Perfect World campaign for Mongoose Traveller 2nd Edition. I don't usually make threads for my campaigns, but as I was working on my player handbook for the campaign I found myself going off on tangents in the lore that, while interesting to me (and maybe even others!) didn't fit quite neatly in the handbook.

    So, this thread is for various write-ups and creativity-posting for me and any player with a lot of free time on their hands. If you're interested in joining, check to see what you're doing Wednesday evenings (Eastern Time) and shoot me a PM.


    RECAP OF DECEMBER 2099

    UN CONFIRMS SPACEPORT EXPANSION COMPLETION DATE. General-Secretary Luis Morterero's office issued a press release confirming that the International Space Port will complete renovations in the spring of 2101, catapulting the markets into the green after several days of small losses. The ISP's third round of expansion has become a pressing international concern after successful prototyping of the Lai Engine. Several engineers from a variety of aerospace firms, speaking under the condition of anonymity, state that the shipbuilding capabilities of the Zero-Two Shipyard will reach the sophistication and mass necessary to construct jump-capable ships. The Chinese firm [ZTS +9.43%] released a statement announcing it has surpassed a billion credits in combined private-public orders.

    We are legally obligated to note that "Chinese firm" refers to the national origin and corporate headquartering of the company and that, as per an agreement between the United Nations and People's Republic of China, Zero-Two operates under special UN regulations and scrutiny.

    NEW BELT COLONISTS CONDEMN SLASH IN FUNDING. The developing colonies of Ceres, Titan, Mercury, and Ganymede, operating under different colonial charters with a combined population measured in the tens of thousands, issued a surprising open letter to the United Nations to bring attention to the plight of the New Belt colonies, referring to the post-Enceladus colonial projects. In recent years, funding for further colonization has been redirected toward projects hoping to take advantage of the coming era of interstellar space travel. Supporters of this redirection point out that the ability to travel lightyears in a week will open up thousands of more hospitable worlds to colonization. Opponents of this reallocation is harming already existing colonists who have given up belongings and ties on Earth for promised new lives on new colonies.

    An American colonial official on Titan told a reporter that the small colonial population of Titan is shrinking as angry colonists decide to pull up stakes and move to established colonies such as Mars, Europa, or Enceladus.

    New Belt colonists are not the only colonists frustrated by the changing priorities of the United Nations and great space powers. Martians and Venusians believe that the Second and Third Earth Initiatives, programs that would attempt to terraform the two worlds, will be set back for decades, even centuries, if Earthlike worlds are settled outside Sol.

    UN SECURITY COUNCIL DECLARES ELF A TERRORIST ORGANIZATION; AUTHORIZES SANCTIONS. The United Nations voted in favor of a resolution that declares the Europa Liberation Front an organization engaged in terrorism. This resolution requires Gaian nations to sanction individuals with ties to the organization as well as suspected fronts. The International Criminal Police Organization has been granted far-reaching powers to investigate and arrest members of the organization so they can be tried in Dublin. A pro-ELF rally was held in Aube shortly after the vote.

    While the move was welcomed by the leaders of the major powers, it has given ammunition to movements with United States and New West calling for a reset in relations with the United Nations. They claim that the UN has usurped excessive power in the aftermath of the Samsonite War and that if the West fails to take a stand, it and the world will find itself embroiled in a federated world government within a generation. Staunch supporters of the United Nations point to the UN's rising power with a decrease in global tensions and threat of nuclear war and that a federated world government would prevent the intra-Gaian rivalries that allowed Europa independence for two decades.
     
  2. Sonereal

    Sonereal ♫We got the guillotine♫ Supporter

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    Lowkey about to rename this game "Misadventures of New Century Millennials Who Can't Roll Survival"
     
    Omega124 likes this.
  3. Sonereal

    Sonereal ♫We got the guillotine♫ Supporter

    Joined:
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    Boring GM stuff:

    About half the fun of running this campaign is tweaking the background sim, a bizarre combination of Dynasty, Pocket Empires, and GURPS Space. For the most part, the background sim sets the tempo of the large and mid-scale events to come in the campaign, which are used to generate smaller events and rumors for players to follow and deal with.

    The party I'm working with doesn't have a ship, nor a particular inclination toward trading, so I'm figuring there's no need to use the lovely but somewhat focus-intensive goods-based trade system over an origin-based system. This means instead of buying basic ore from such and such world that has a base price of W and modifiers Y and Z, you get a "generic" trade good (Earth Trade Good, Martian Trade Good), etc. that you generate on a fly with a single base price modified by a quick number of rolls. The advantage here is, if I set the worksheet up right (which I will because I always do), a player could just copy the sheet, type in the source world (the world they're buying from) and destination world (the world they are selling to) to get the expected profit for a ton of a generic trade good (which in game terms could be really anything that makes sense, which means an infinite number of possible trade goods limited by our collective imaginations instead of a gargantuan trade table of various goods).

    The modifications I'm making to OBT (which I lifted from Freelance Traveller) come from the gravity model of trade I discovered from GURPS (albeit with heavy modification). There's no point in going too deeply into this part yet since its largely just off to the side in an Excel workbook while I balance it, but the general idea is that I can use the numbers I'm already generating from Pocket Empires to grab several important numbers relevant to the players and background sim.

    For example, players can buy pretty much as many trade goods as they wish* from Earth. So, the party buys and loads up the ship with specialized mining equipment to sell to Europa. Europa's population and economy is far smaller than Earth's (billions versus a hundred thousand). Your large ship full of expensive mining equipment is nice; Europa traders appreciate it, but they can't buy all of it with hard credit. You know how in Fallout and Skyrim the merchants can't buy your 100 sets of shrouded armor because they lack gold? Similar idea, except you can sell on credit and walk away with hard credits and a debt that will be paid over the course of a year (with interest). Alternatively, you can buy Europa trade goods with that credit.

    Importantly, this situation has a direct impact on the sim. The buying and selling of goods from a world improves its economy. While my party isn't likely to achieve some monumental trading empire capable of sending Earth's economy into a tailspin or golden age on a whim, the colonies definitely can be.

    FInally, the OBT from FLT doesn't really have special rules for illicit goods, so I'm probably just going to gen something up that's lightweight.

    How often have I actually touched the sim since the campaign started? In terms of making it do things, zero. The background sim operates on a scale of months and years instead of days or weeks. The sim isn't granular enough to generate, say, a revenge bounty hunting mission that's mostly personal. You wouldn't need me if it did, now would you? My players are constantly trying to kill me and I see the way they look at me, how they glance at one another when I enter the server.
     

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