Citizens of the Imperium

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flykiller February 5th, 2017 12:25 AM

the competition
 
traveller adventures and gameplay seem to lack any notion or implementation of personal or ship competition, friendly or otherwise, in merchant trade. here are some ships and crews to give your players a run for their money. everyone feel free to add your own.

flykiller February 5th, 2017 12:26 AM

ics hostra

the hostra is a jenny-class 400 dton frontier merchant boat. built at tech 12, this one has been refitted with a retro-design model 6 computer/sensor suite manufactured at mora and tech 14 turret weapons from del sol yards on palique. "hostra" is a moran word for a front-line (in any context) matriarch.

ship

400 dtons, armor (4+0)
streamlined, fuel purifier
j2 m2 pp3 (12 energy points)
model 6 computer/sensor suite - 3 dtons, 1 energy point
4 triple turrets
----BBB (3 energy points), one gunnery station, one backup battery
----MMM, one gunnery station, one backup battery, one reload magazine
----SSS/SSS, one gunnery station, two backup batteries, two reload magazines
9 crew cabins, 2 robot bays, entertainment suite, lounge
2 damage control stations
2 airlocks, 2 cargo locks, 8 dtons ship locker, airraft bay
jump fuel 80 dtons, power plant fuel 12 dtons
130 dtons cargo, 4 passenger cabins, 8 lowberths

crew

the crew are all members of an extended moran family who cut their trading teeth in harsh competition with fornice traders. all are competent, most are aggressive.

"grandma", enterprise matriarch
vacc suit 0G 1
broker 4*, administration 2*, forgery 2
leader 2*, liaison 1
sidearm 2

"grandma" is 72 and healthy as a horse. she can be charming and hardass as necessary. she knows where all the bodies are buried, she knows where all the high-class goods are, she knows what all the prices are, and she knows how to manipulate people, schedules, and deliveries. she often has the ship's entire cargo load sold and half the outgoing load bought before the ship even touches down.

hokara wilton, pilot
vacc suit 0G 1
pilot 3*, navigation 1, ship tactics 1
sidearm 1

hokara likes to fly too close to competitors' ships and crowd them out of landing zones and docking bays. when he can get away with it he'll crowd a ship about to jump, contaminating its navigation calculations and forcing it to delay while he jumps ahead of it. he has sufficiently angered enough competitors that he has picked up some ship combat handling skills. he listens seriously only to grandma and mitaka, almost never saying anything other than "yes ma'am" when they make a decision.

"mouse" mitaka wilton, navigator
vacc suit 0G 1
pilot 1, navigation 2*
communications 2* (navigation +1, computer +1)
computer 2* (navigation +1, communications +1)

hokara's lady. little mitaka taps into all the communications beams and facilities she can access, getting all the inside information and passing it on to grandma. she's also better than most navigators at her level in getting closer to the jump target sooner, getting cargo in for bid before other ships arrive.

bennet hill, chief engineer
vacc suit 0G 2*
engineering 2*, mechanics 2*, damage control 2* (engineering +1)
carousing 1
tactics 1, shotgun 1

an otherwise typical engineer, bennet has a gift for ambushing in-hull intruders. he's well-trained in preventing and getting control of any damage to an engineering plant and getting systems back on-line.

chewca, assistant engineer
vacc suit 0G 2*
mechanic 2*, electronics 1
wilderness 2, hunting 2, wilderness recon 2, urban recon 2
rifle 2*

open-air planetside or dome habitat, chewca is a nature boy who fits into any environment like a native. dogs and monkeys love him on sight and seem eager to obey him, and he has a special gift relating to any "vermin" that are present.

minaca tang, assistant engineer
vacc suit 0G 1
electronics 2*, robotics 2*
medic 2

minaca dreams of a better world where no-one fights, and her robots are civilized and polite as can be. but if forced to choose she sticks to her family with no compromise.

harman harrison, senior gunner/deckhand
vacc suit 0G 2*
turret gunnery 3* (lasers +1)
cargo 2*, streetwise 2
airraft 1
shotgun 2

harman looks forward to any ship-to-ship engagement. it's all a game to him and he's very very good at it. he's a hulking boy and also likes to intimidate and play chicken with any other cargo handlers on the docks.

publius maximus immanus, assistant gunner/deckhand
vacc suit 0G 2*
turret gunnery 2* (missiles +1)
cargo 1, streetwise 1
tracked vehicle 1
rifle 1, sidearm 1

publius likes to read up on history and travelogues, both ancient and modern, and he's always highly informed about every world his ship and crew visit. he's a patient and calculating missileer, quite willing to throw away one or two salvos as decoys or saturation in order to slam home the follow-up salvo.

shank, assistant gunner/deckhand
vacc suit 0G 1
turret gunnery 2*(sand +1)
cargo 1, streetwise 1
ground vehicle 2* (gravitic +2)
urban recon 2, combatives 2

on his ship "shank" is gentle and happy as a puppy. off the ship he's always in the background, to one side, behind you. he's always friendly, but he has this look in his eye that makes everyone who isn't family nervous. he drives like a maniac, but never seems to have an accident.

Whipsnade February 5th, 2017 01:10 AM

Great stuff, Fly. Any referee worth his Cheetos and Mountain Dew can easily drop Grandma, her crew, and the Hostra into their campaign.

I've written about Javier Blanco, my ripoff of Lance White from The Rockford Files, several times now. I never specifically detailed Blanco's abilities or the abilities of his crew because I always used both to humorously "one up" the players. For example, if the players' engineer had Eng-2, Blanco's engineer had Eng-3.

No matter what the players could or would do, Blanco & Co were always just a little bit better!

For anyone who can't quite grasp Javier Blanco, here's a bit of dialogue from The Rockford Files that should idea across:

Quote:

Lance White: Maybe we should forget about lunch and follow up a lead or something?

Jim Rockford: Which lead did you have in mind, Lance?

Lance White: We don't have one, Jim.

Jim Rockford: [laughing] Then I guess it would be hard to follow up then, huh?

Lance White: C'mon, you and I both know that when you need a lead one always shows up. That's the way it works.

Jim Rockford: [Frustrated] No, it never just shows up, Lance. Never. Watch my lips: NEV - VER.

Freddie Beamer: Hey guys, look at this. [He gives Rockford a picture]

Jim Rockford: What's that?

Freddie Beamer: I found this last night with the Senator. It was in his hand.

Jim Rockford: [Disbelievingly] Sure it was.

Freddie Beamer: Yea, I put it in my pocket and forgot about it.

Lance White: This could be the lead we've been waiting for, Jim.

Jim Rockford: Wait, wait, wait a minute, let me get this straight. Ten seconds ago we had no leads, nothing, huh?

Lance White: That's right.

Jim Rockford: And now Beamer pulls this picture of a band leader or something out of his pocket and says it was in the dead man's hand, and then he tells us it's been in his coat for 18 hours, and it shows up right now when we need it?

Lance White: That's exactly right, Jim. What's the problem?

Jim Rockford: Oh, no problem. No, no problem at all. I just want to get it straight. I may want to tell an analyst.
Referencing another character in another series, Blanco is the free trader version of Captain Carrot Ironfounderson.

mike wightman February 5th, 2017 04:32 AM

You know the sample characters at the beginning of most of the adventures?

Give them names (and a ship if relevant) and you have instant NPC party to flesh out your campaigns.

Whipsnade February 5th, 2017 04:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mike wightman (Post 558244)
You know the sample characters at the beginning of most of the adventures?

Give them names (and a ship if relevant) and you have instant NPC party to flesh out your campaigns.


Good call. A couple of dice and S:1 1001 Characters can also produce NPCs quickly.

I've used that playing card system from TNE to create "instant" personalities too.

Spinward Scout February 5th, 2017 04:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Whipsnade (Post 558235)
...here's a bit of dialogue from The Rockford Files that should idea across:.

That's awesome how you got me to read that with James Garner's voice. :)

flykiller February 28th, 2017 12:31 AM

khung

the khung is a vargr trading ship suitable for long-ranging open trade. tech 12, 400 dton clipper, j3m2, power for a pair of triple beam laser turrets and model 4 computer. "khung" roughly translates to "the boom". the vargr can be showy and the boom is fully outfitted with external lights/florescence/luminescence altering its appearance to depict various canines, sharks, hawks, wolverines, and terran dinosaurs, all in attack mode, and with a full external music show that combines mexican mariachi with ghetto rap. when the boom pulls into port no-one can escape its self-announcement.

ship

tech 12, 400 dtons, armor (4+0)
streamlined, fuel purifier (6 dtons)
j3 m2 pp4 (16 energy points) (16, 20, 48 dtons)
4 triple turrets
BBB/BBB (6 energy points), one gunnery station, 2 backup batteries (6 dtons)
SSS/SSS, one gunnery station, 2 backup batteries, 2 reload magazines (6 dtons)
6 crew cabins, 2 pack cabins, run (40 dtons)
2 damage control stations (4 dtons)
2 airlocks, 2 cargo locks (6 dtons)
ship's locker (8 dtons)
garage with 6 grav sleds (6 dtons)
jump fuel (120 dtons), power plant fuel (16 dtons)
cargo (70 dtons), 2 pax cabins (8 dtons)

the bridge pack

ksaer thueng goukh
the alpha pack leader and broker. a former ambassador's assistant, well-trained and practiced in both galanglic and at reading human facial expressions and body language, thueng knows galanglic better than many imperials and with his keen sense of smell can "read" humans better than a trained human psychiatrist. heavy gold jewelry, loud clothing, very deep voice, has a tendency to stare calculatingly into any competitor's eyes.

englle takhsgaeg
beta pilot/navigator, handles his ship like a toy, loves hot-dogging his landings and take-offs and a total show-off with gravitic equipment, but otherwise mellow and perhaps even lazy.

argha dzoung
beta navigator/pilot, quiet and dependable but she loves a low-tech-level hunt and will do just about anything, even work with humans, to join one.

zaei uegzuell
beta computer/communications, loves glitter, wears silver polished to a high gleam and led-jewellry. well-trained computer operators and comm specialists will recognize the various math sequences embedded in her jewellry and its light displays.

aghkong
beta gunner/stalker, senior weapons operator and field guard. reserved and calculating, he has no jewellry or decorations of any kind, just well-worn practical lightweight combat gear. he has however had numerous teeth replaced with stainless steel versions, and the remaining natural teeth capped with gold - all of it perhaps just a little sharp - and he likes to flash a smile at the pinkies (humans) at appropriate moments.

orrgzar
beta gunner/stalker, junior weapons operator and field guard. young and territorial with a lot to prove and ready to prove it all right now. frequently held in check by aghkong who likes to use orrgzar in a good dog / bad dog routine. hates his job as sand gunner, though he's fairly good at it, and hopes to advance to missiles.

all may be armed with the traditional vargr weapons of arzkho (small-caliber high-capacity full-auto pistol) and sors (double-bladed dagger held in the mouth).

the deck pack

dhoghz (o, u, oe, ue, fu, na)

six smaller vargr, almost child-sized, big ears and loping limbs, kind of ugly, very smart and very fast. these perform engineering, cargo, and transportation functions. little interested in humans. while ranked delta in vargr society they have no rank amongst themselves but are utterly communist, cooperating and sharing and swapping leadership and gruntwork as needed and functioning as a team in every possible manner. in their own pack they have names, but when part of an alpha or beta back they are all named "dhoghz" and numbered - dhoghz o, dhoghz u, etc. when any of the bridge crew are successful in any status-endeavor the deck pack will crowd around yipping and howling and popping ceramic bottles of bubbly fermented milk.

these are never armed with anything other than their natural teeth, but their intense teamwork and intelligently-informed dog pack behavior makes them formidable opponents at close quarters.

Spenser TR February 28th, 2017 12:41 AM

Along the lines of competition, GT:BTC mentions a periodic Spinward Point-to-Point Race held in the Marches. I always thought this would be an interesting backdrop for the start of a campaign, or putting the Travellers in the middle of racers popping in at a critical system and getting enmeshed somehow.

flykiller February 28th, 2017 12:50 AM

Quote:

getting enmeshed somehow.
perhaps they are getting ready to jump out, and several racers appear and want to by their jump fuel and start bidding for it, or jockeying in to get close and push each other away.

thinking about this I recall star wars number one, or whatever it is, where the sand people take pot shots at the pod racers below, and they are considered part of the course.

coliver988 February 28th, 2017 08:32 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Spenser TR (Post 560037)
Along the lines of competition, GT:BTC mentions a periodic Spinward Point-to-Point Race held in the Marches. I always thought this would be an interesting backdrop for the start of a campaign, or putting the Travellers in the middle of racers popping in at a critical system and getting enmeshed somehow.

From Don's Timeline (my game takes place in 1104 so I was looking to see what was happening then:

067-1103 First Spinward Point-to-Point Race begun on Trin (Spinward Marches 3235) requiring the collection of encrypted data chips from Glisten, Mora, Lunion, Rhylanor, Lanth, Regina and Frenzie. Behind the Claw,SJG, 1998, p. 07.

1104 Nine of the 17 entries in the first Spinward Point-to-Point returned to the starting point on Trin by the end of 1104. Behind the Claw, SJG, 1998, p. 07.


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