Citizens of the Imperium

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-   -   Low Berth Survival (http://www.travellerrpg.com/CotI/Discuss/showthread.php?t=9996)

Golan2072 February 26th, 2005 02:52 PM

One thing that bothers me is the high risk of death from Low Passage. According to Book 2, a healthy person has to roll 5+ to survive the trip (or the equivalent of 4+ if a medic with a Medic-2 or better skill attends him), and an infirm (END 6-) person would have to roll 6+ to survive without the medic or 5+ with him. In terms of probability, without medical attention 17%, on avarage, of low passengers would die; with medical attention, 8%; for infirm persons without medical attention 28%.

Therefore, it's quite a risky way to travel; risky enough to discourage most people (and players) except for the most desperate ones to use it. It might be fitting for TL8-9 sublight colony ships (which are very risky anyway), but I think that the low berths found on so many commercial ships would be simply unprofitable if only a few people would ever opt to use them, and might even be outlawed due to the risk factor.

On the other hand I still want to retain a certain level of grit and to keep low berths undesirable for those who could afford better modes of travel (which are 8-10 times more expensive).

My general direction of thought about a solution to this issue is of a DM for higher TL low berths (+1 on TL11/12 and +2 on TL13+) as well as replacing the "instant death" result with 4D6 wounds, applied according to thje "first shot" rule. Additionally, I'll give a DM of +2 (instead of the standard +1) to passengers who had a Medic-2 attend them BEFORE entering the cryo-sleep as well as AFTER it - so healthy persons who use cryo-sleep using the "standard procedure" with modern (TL12) cryotubes usually get out well; unhealthy persons, or people using emergency and/or older low berthes take quite a risk.

So, how do you deal with this in your game/YTU?

Spinward Scout February 26th, 2005 03:06 PM

The wounds instead of death started with MT I think. Something about your skin turning grey and worse depending on your roll. Going to space is risky. I don't think Low Berths would be outlawed except maybe by extremists. It's like using any medicine nowadays - you could take two asprin and die because your blood thinned and a blood clot broke loose in one of your arteries and travelled to your brain. There's always some chance of something happenning. 17% is still high, tho. Check out MegaTraveller if you can.

Scout

TheEngineer February 26th, 2005 03:21 PM

I simply accept, that travelling in a low berth is a risky business. On the other hand you do not waste life time during travel... worth a risk ?
At least the MT way to handle low passages is a bit more traveller friendly and under right circumstances low berthing is pretty safe here.

Mert

Golan2072 February 27th, 2005 04:00 AM

Quote:

Originally posted by TheEngineer:
At least the MT way to handle low passages is a bit more traveller friendly and under right circumstances low berthing is pretty safe here.
That's the effect I'm aiming to under the right circumstances. Under the wrong circumstances, on the other hand, it could be pretty unpleasant, to say the least. That is, take a normal low passage, and, if you're healthy, it should be pretty safe. But emergency use, which is without preperation, is quite risky - injury, for the very least, if not death.

I think I'll simply stick to 5d6 wounds and not change the chances. That is, roll 5d6, apply to one stat; stat goes to zero - apply the rest to the next; goes to zero as well, apply the remainder to the third stat; goes to zero - sayonara.

Whipsnade February 27th, 2005 04:23 PM

Employee 2-4601 wrote:
Quote:

That's the effect I'm aiming to under the right circumstances. Under the wrong circumstances, on the other hand, it could be pretty unpleasant, to say the least.
Dear 2-4601,

That's my take on the situation too. Even before MT drew the low berth's fangs, I had already fiddled with survival rates IMTU. (I fiddled the costs downward too.)

IMTU, low berth travel is at a level of Western airliner safety. More accurately, it is at that level of safety under the right circumstances.

Fly British Air between London and New York and enjoy your trip. Fly Air Senegal between Lagos and Harare and you deserve what happens to you.

Take a Tukera low berth between Glisten and Strouden and enjoy your dreams. Take a tramp trader's low berth between Kwai Ching and Tarsus and... well, let's say your life insurance should be paid up or one of your party (hopefully the medic) should travel 'warm'.

It all depends on where you going and who you've paid to take you there. That's been pretty much the story of travel for most of human history.


Sincerely,
Bill

vegascat February 28th, 2005 05:49 AM

Low berths have more uses than just interplanetary travel. IMTU, you can stack up to 4 people in a berth in emergencies, -1 per person over 1. Emergency med teams have low berths in EMS vehicles at TL12 on some planets and in better mercenary companies for severly wounded. Damage can be repaired while frozen by properly trained surgeons. DM to survive = 1/2 surgeons skill.

Modifiers used are
- Low berth fully maintained between each person (required by major lines)+1
- Low berth minimally maintained by trained tech no mod
- Low berth not maintained by trained tech -1
- Med Tech medical skill +1/2
- Passenger fully prepped for a full week (required by major lines) +1
- Passenger dropped in with no prep -1
- Passenger prepped for 24 hours minimum no mod
- Roll less than a 5 or a natural 2 and you just had a very bad reaction, roll 5d damage and hope the medic on duty is up on his emergency procedures.

aramis February 28th, 2005 11:54 PM

MT says:
To have a patient survive Low Berth revival: Routine, Medical, Int, 1min, fateful.
Use the attending medic's skills. So, a roll of 7-(Skill+(Int/5)) or more on 2d6 is needed. Assuming Joe Average Starship Medic (Med 1, Int 7), that's the same 5+ needed, and it takes from 1-16 minutes.
Taking extra time (doubling) to 2-32 minutes, makes it DM+4...
On a fail, roll for mishap on 2d. Mishap dice total
3-6 patient takes: 1d wounds, lasting 1d days, then healing normally. skin discolored and wrinkled for 1d6 weeks
7-10 patient takes: 2d wounds for 1d6 days. 1d6 weeks motor function (2 points dex) loss for 1d6 week.
11-14 patient takes: 3d permanent wounds... will heal only with medical treatment including surgury or similar level of care.
15+ patient is Dead.

Note that MT says not to use the additional mishap die from Natural 2 or fail by 2+ for low berth survival. I usually use it only if the attending doc is unskilled, the berth is damaged, or the task is made hasty... I like the rare chance of a F***-up killing a passenger, but I want it to always be malpractice that causes it... heheheh

Golan2072 July 1st, 2005 07:45 AM

Quote:

Originally posted by vegascat:
Low berths have more uses than just interplanetary travel. IMTU, you can stack up to 4 people in a berth in emergencies, -1 per person over 1. Emergency med teams have low berths in EMS vehicles at TL12 on some planets and in better mercenary companies for severly wounded. Damage can be repaired while frozen by properly trained surgeons. DM to survive = 1/2 surgeons skill.

Modifiers used are
- Low berth fully maintained between each person (required by major lines)+1
- Low berth minimally maintained by trained tech no mod
- Low berth not maintained by trained tech -1
- Med Tech medical skill +1/2
- Passenger fully prepped for a full week (required by major lines) +1
- Passenger dropped in with no prep -1
- Passenger prepped for 24 hours minimum no mod
- Roll less than a 5 or a natural 2 and you just had a very bad reaction, roll 5d damage and hope the medic on duty is up on his emergency procedures.

Seems quite reasonable... Though I'd probably also add a modifier by TL, with TL8 having very risky low berths, and TL15 low berths being almost perfectly safe, unless adverse circumstances are involved.

Golan2072 September 24th, 2005 12:23 PM

My Approach to Low Berths:
My task system is used; according to it, to revive a low passenger:

Medic (EDU, Avarage, 30mins)

DMs:
-2 if the berth's TL is 8-9
-1 if the berth's TL is 10-11
+1 if the berth's TL is 14-15
+2 if the berth's TL is 16+
+2 if berth is fully maintained between passengers
-2 if ship is overdue for maintainance by up to a year
-4 if ship is overdue for maintainace by more than a year
+2 if passenger is fully prepped (takes a few hours)
-1 if passenger is not prepared but is frozen using the standard procedure (takes 30 minutes)
-2 if emergency-frozen (takes less than a minute)
-4 if no Medic is present

The ship's medic rolls. Success means that the passenger awakens normally and is good to go in about 30 minutes; failure causes a Serious Wound (see my combat system).

A quick rule-of-a-thumb: If the total DMs includimg the Medic's skill and attribute DMs) are equal to +8 or greater, assume automatic success unless special circumstances apply (that is, unless the referee decrees otherwise); if they are equal to -8 or lower, assume automatic failure.

Maladominus September 24th, 2005 04:05 PM

Quote:

Originally posted by Employee 2-4601:
One thing that bothers me is the high risk of death from Low Passage. According to Book 2, a healthy person has to roll 5+ to survive the trip (or the equivalent of 4+ if a medic with a Medic-2 or better skill attends him), and an infirm (END 6-) person would have to roll 6+ to survive without the medic or 5+ with him. In terms of probability, without medical attention 17%, on avarage, of low passengers would die; with medical attention, 8%; for infirm persons without medical attention 28%.

So, how do you deal with this in your game/YTU?

IMTU I simply bend the CT rules a little. I have no need to re-write the rules. I simply ammend the existing rules.

It says that Medic-2 gives a +1 DM for a survival throw.

Simple solution. IMTU, the presence of a Medic-4 gives a +2 DM for a survival throw. Net result? Chance of death is far lower because death only results when you roll a 2 (snake eyes).

Do remember: a Medic-2 is simply the equivalent of a nurse, a combat medic, paramedic, nurse-practitioner, an EMT, or an RCP. These individuals are trained to do on-the-spot CPR skills and resuscitate a patient with common rescusitate drugs such as Epi (epinephrine) or whatever its equivalent will be in the Year 5000. But they won't be able to do much if the patient is really coding or hemmorrhaging to death. You really need a trained physician/surgeon to do that.

BTW: I have worked in hospitals for years, and my current training is (IMHO) I consider the Classic Traveller equivalent of Medic-2 skill. I know my medical skills and the limits of my medical license fairly well.

The Canon rules have said several times that A REAL DOCTOR (having completed Medical School training and residency) is defined as having a minimum of Medic-3. Supplement 4 Citizens of the Imperium says this explicitly. A surgeon is at least a Medic-3 with a high dexterity on top of that. A skilled surgeon would be Medic-4 or higher (and of course a high dexterity).

Armed with that knowledge, my ammendment makes perfect sense, as the presence of "A SKILLED DOCTOR/SURGEON" aboard the ship will make the chance of death a lot lower. Even if things go bad, the skilled doc/surgeon can at least be expected to save *some* lives, tho he may not save everyone all the time.

And as IMTU goes, a nice fully staffed starliner such as a 600-ton Tukera starliner (this is a canon passenger liner), will have a good chance of enlisting a resident doctor (Medic-4) in the crew. IMTU I do make a distinction if the individual is doing low berth passage aboard a NICE well-crewed passenger ship, or aboard a NOT-SO-NICE scummy passenger ship. Characters take their chances aboard the latter types of vessels.

I do also agree with the suggestions above of positive DMs for the higher tech levels. You are simply less likely to die in berth aboard a well-crewed TL14 cruiser than you are aboard a TL9 first-generation space ship.


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