Thread: Rules Only: Rails vs. Sandbox/Freeform
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Old July 20th, 2017, 12:27 PM
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I'm currently refereeing our second weekly campaign of Traveller (MgT 2E rules). Our first campaign was based on the Linkworlds Cluster T20 campaign setting book (in the 993 era), along with Mongoose's The Calixcuel Incident adventure throw in near the end, and some making things up along the way.

I liked the Linkworlds Cluster book a lot because it provided a sense of space, background info, and nice outlines for who and what is going on in the worlds of that cluster. For all but one of my players this was our first time playing Traveller so I appreciated a written reference of tone for the universe.

The players seemed to enjoy the various scenarios that were on each planet. Some we played fairly close to the book, others changed significantly based on the player choices. At the end of the campaign everyone made positive comments about the experience overall.

Before starting this second campaign (continuing into 994, and a cluster trailing over in the Matarishan subsector) I asked my players what each of them enjoyed about the previous campaign. I was somewhat surprised to learn that all of them liked a different thing, with nearly no crossover. Some liked exploring derelicts, others liked battling a huge mob heckbent on putting them in the ground, still others liked thinking through the political maneuvering of a world.

Since no Linkworlds-esque text exists for the worlds we're visiting now (Daggar's Edge and it's J1 compatriots) I've had to collect more info on my own. I've created a new strategy to deal with what my four (sometimes five) players are interested in.

I've looked at the UWP for each system and written up a short description paragraph for each, to remind myself what's there, and to have as library data when the players ask me What's The Word. I've collected a bunch of one-page, or small pre-written adventures and assigned them to each system. I also have a few free-floating adventures that happen In Space, so I can use those whenever the players are not on-world.

I'm comfortable using adventures and ideas from everywhere, for example, Daggar's Edge seemed like a neat place to have Night City from Cyberpunk 2020 set, so I domed the whole thing and now it sits on a tidally-locked vacuum world in the perpetual twilight of it's habitable area. I'm running a tweaked system-less adventure set in Las Vegas in my version of Night City, that all boils down to a tale of noir-flavored intrigue and adventure.

We're only three sessions in so I haven't had a chance to run any of my single adventures but I think they'll fit in well. Since I have two or three per planet, I feel like I can guide the players into these stories while still letting them make choices about where to go or what to do. I'm more or less prepared for wherever they want to go in the cluster, and have a few B-plot adventure ideas to push them along. Hopefully I'll have enough to suit the interests of all the players. Time will tell!

Wow this is long and ramble-y and I apologize.
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