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Old August 8th, 2014, 03:28 AM
SpaceBadger SpaceBadger is offline
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I found the two Craw articles, in JTAS #10 and 11, by William H. Keith and J. Andrew Keith (Referee's Guide to Planet-Building, Parts 1 & 2):

The first article has the physical details of Craw and its Human population. The second article has its native life, including a native sophont species.

Craw (SM 1739) C573645-3 Ni (Crawni) 923 G7 V
(Note the TL has apparently risen all the way to 5 since the writing of those articles.)

From its size 5 with standard tainted (7) atmo, it is concluded that it must have close to Terran gravity, thus a high density yielding a planetary mass close to Terra in a much smaller volume. This could mean a prevalence of heavy metals, possibly in near-surface deposits attractive to mining interests.

From its 3 hydro rating, it is determined to be an arid planet with a narrow habitable zone surrounding a small polar sea. The rest of the planet is a mix of deserts, mountains, badlands, and the like.

The hydro rating and desertified surface yield another idea regarding that tainted atmo. Rather than the usual dust or pollen or pollution, the "taint" could simply be a low partial pressure of oxygen in the atmosphere, due to a low incidence of oxygenating plant life away from the habitable zone.

The Pop digit of 6 and Govt digit of 4 (Representative Democracy), along with the TL of 3, were interpreted as a "lost" human colony building its technology up to that of Europe in the 1700s, just on the verge of an industrial revolution. However a few million people were not considered enough for that sort of advancement, so the authors stated that on this world, the Pop number represented only the Human colony, but there was also a substantial population of native sophonts, some "wild" and some held by the Humans as slaves.

The low TL of the Humans meant that the Class C Starport must be owned by offworld interests, such as those mining interests we mentioned earlier.

Part 2 of the article developed what sort of native life might have developed on such a world, deciding that much of the "mammal" analogs would be barrel-chested for extra lung capacity to process the lower amount of oxygen in the atmosphere. For the native sophonts, this meant smaller than human, with leathery skin to prevent moisture loss, short knobby tails for balance in climbing rocky places, and the afore-mentioned barrel chests. Animal encounter tables were used to design a domesticated, omnivorous beast of burden and a small, arachnoid predator.

Since Travellermap now tells us the TL is 5, and we've already used that in the story, I postulate that in the 20 or so years since that survey was made, the Scout service determined that the native sophonts (Crawni) were being exploited both by the "native" Humans and the off-world mining interests, and under threat of declaring a Red Zone interdiction the Scouts took over the administration of the place.

Since the interstellar mining corporation was already in touch with the locals and had built a starport, the cat was already out of the bag so far as any issue of stealthy non-interference. The Scouts simply took over the minimal Class C port facility, added a training center for people coming to observe or work with the native Crawni, imposed limits on further exploration or exploitation beyond mines already in existence, and through education and selected assistance with infrastructure have raised the local Human population to Tech Level 5. To limit further contact between the mining corp and the "natives" of both species, their operations were restricted to areas away from population, and the products of the mines are taken straight to orbit via shuttle for rendezvous with large ore transports.

So that is Craw as it exists today.
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Last edited by SpaceBadger; August 8th, 2014 at 03:49 AM..
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