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Traveller 5 Discussion of the Fifth edition of Traveller, released Spring 2013.

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Old April 25th, 2018, 11:47 PM
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Default (ATU) The Hegemony

This is a Traveller setting that brings together a few bits of original work I'd toyed with over the years.


THE GALAXY

There is no true center of civilization. Empires are loosely scattered throughout the galaxy, with large (vast?) expanses of ungoverned star systems between them.

Empires are "civilized" in the sense that government is centralized. Rulers look out for themselves, as they did in times past, and often prefer to play it safe than take risks. As a result, threats tend to loom until states face existential disaster.


THE HEGEMONY

The Hegemony is a human-majority empire with a radius approximately 2,000 parsecs long. That's 60 sectors on average. This represents a tiny segment of a galactic arm, plus a bite out of a tiny segment of the two arms adjacent to it. There are perhaps 300,000 member worlds -- perhaps 40 trillion people-- that's two systems per subsector -- and maybe six million additional non-citizen worlds subject to the Hegemony's whims.

Surrounding it are a number of smaller halo empires; two of them (the Khurgany and the Sargonate) are pirate kingdoms. They are 15 sectors and 20 sectors across, respectively. While the Sargonate is right on the edge of the Hegemony, the Kurgany is completely enveloped by it. The Sargon have Hop-2 drives, while the Khurgan have Hop-1.

A Few Key Worlds:

Tula, the capital of the Hegemony.
Aderni, a central industrial power only 12 sectors from Tula.
Ikaros, a trailing world near the Sargonate, 50 sectors from Tula.
Corlano, a world on the Inner Arm and near the Khurganate, 42 sectors from Tula.
Odin, a world on the Outer Arm, 60 sectors from Tula.


LOCAL HISTORY

People You Won't Encounter

Someone lived on Otson, perhaps five million years ago, but there's almost no trace of them remaining. Whoever was there, was powerful.

The Uel Zar reached TL0 about 3.5 million years ago, rose to TL33 in a little over a million years, then self-destructed, leaving behind a few very durable but inscrutable ruins.

The Kallue reached TL30 twice; once in -1,270,000, and again in -1,090,000. The second time, they reached Singularity and finally regressed to extinction around -760,000.

The Aessar self-destructed in -500,000.

The Odhonan self-destructed around -96,000, leaving scattered artifacts throughout the Local Arm.

The Saerr ascended in -78,000, leaving artifacts behind.


People You Might Encounter

The Atalantus diverged into multiple sophont peoples around 5 million years ago (and vanished). The Tellus, one of their descendant sophont peoples, reached TL0 around 1.5 million years ago, and stayed there until recently. Within the last 10,000 years or so they have leapt forward to TL20. Though they are unremarkable in size, intelligence, and form, they are yet the majority sophont in the Hegemony.

Other extant descendants of the Atalantus are the Jeraz, Catostoy, and Nawu.

The Satsunak achieved TL1 around the same time as the Uel Zar, but didn't reach TL2 until -650,000, TL3 in -415,000, and finally TL4 in -14,000... where they have stayed ever since, in a state of continual warfare. Only recently have some Satsunak (surprisingly) showed technological interest.

The Zoge diverged into multiple sophont peoples around -575,000. The Sargon are one of those descendant sophont peoples, and are currently TL19.

Other extant descendants of the Zoge are the Stepel, Tepe, and Faese.

The Thul Kaenik civilization arose in -130,000, and over the next hundred-thousand years achieved starfaring status. For the past 25,000 years they have been at a comfortable TL15. More recently they have increasingly been adopting TL17+ technology.

The Idal diverged into several sophont peoples around -120,000, leaving their mainworld a mysterious museum of inaccessible technology. The Khagan are one of those descendant sophont peoples, currently at TL18.

Other extant descendants of the Idal are the Qotuse, Bechi, and Vizei.

The Rrill, and the Veghahudh, and the Kotsou, haven't passed TL1, and they might never: they're been there for a hundred thousand years or more.

The Zaedaez reached TL22 in -45,000, but since then have gradually slid backwards. They dropped from TL3 to TL2 eleven thousand years ago, with chief warlords in possession of relic artifacts and modern technology.

The proto-sophonts on Ovag use simple tools, and may be on the cusp of sapience.






EQUIPMENT

Armor ranges from ultra-fine mesh suits to highly useful 4-ton maintenance pods.

Code:
Code         Name                                       AV and Protection              Mass  KCr 
------------ ------------------------------------------ ------------------------------ ---- ---- 
ADCS-18      Advanced Disposable Combat Env Suit-18     19 [9,10,10,10,3,40,10]          18    6 
AVlCA-19     Advanced Vlight Combat Env Armor-19        54 [17,20,20,20,3,43,20]         36  480 
ATVU-19      Advanced Titan Vacc Unit-19                46 [28,18,20,20,4,48,28]       4320 36000 
ModHCD-20    Modified Heavy Combat Env Dress-20         74 [37,43,43,43,0,54,43]        117  576
Stasis. A backpack-sized stasis drawer is used for storing items in stasis. Battery life is based on device Quality. Unsafe units may cause loss of limbs. Cr500.

Similarly, stasis capsules replace low berths (regular, medical, and emergency) as the cheap people-storage device of choice. MCr1.

Weapons. A motley mix of edge-tech weapons are available, including:

Code:
Code        Name                 Damage and Hits            Mass  R Bu    Cost 
----------- -------------------- -------------------------- ----- - -- ------- 
StXR-20     Disintegrator Rifle  (5) Bullet-3 Disrupt-2     4     4 1    5,000    
UlFR-20     Fusion Rifle         (10) Bullet-4 Pen-2 Burn-4 3.36  4 -2  35,000        
PrGP-18     Gauss Pistol         (3) Bullet-3               2.64  5 2    3,000 
ModPsiP-20  Neural Pistol        (5) Bullet-2 Psi-3         0.99  2 0    1,620 
APP-20      Plasma Pistol        (10) Bullet-3 Pen-3 Burn-4 1.05  3 -1   6,000        
BRlR-20     Relativity Rifle     (4) Bullet-2 Relat-2       5.72  4 1    3,500

TECHNOLOGY

The prevailing tech level is TL20: just a couple TLs shy of the frighteningly powerful and exceptionally disaster-prone fantastic technologies.

Starships. Skip-1 drives are common (and essential if you have business on the other side of the Hegemony); Hop-1, 2, and 3 are ubiquitous. The Jump drive fills niche applications. Antimatter-2 power plants are available, and (better) may be stacked. So a Hop-3 drive can use the combined output of an Antimatter-2 and Antimatter-1 power plant combo. Or, alternately, a Collector-3 (or better). This results in a range and capacity gain. With the White Globe comes space defense not unlike shield technology, and with Antimatter missiles comes high damage potential. Many starships are sentient and even self-owning; their powerful AI is more than capable of running all essential crew positions. TL20 starships are incredibly powerful compared to TL16 starships.

Structures. Orbital rings are commonplace around TL16 mainworlds. Ringmoons (orbital rings around gas giants) can be found in TL19+ star systems with high populations. These structures have a number of possible functions. A Neptune ringmoon would have a usable area of two dozen Earths.

Rosettes are rare, but are known to exist. The host sophonts of rosette systems are (or were) higher than TL20, and therefore are scary.

Matter Transport. Matter (raw or living) can be teleported to any point in a world, removing the bottleneck of conventional shipping across water, road or rail. Shipping (and global travel for that matter) is more like instantaneous air mail.

Skill Wafers. Up to 20 levels of skills are available on TL20 wafers, allowing people to become highly skilled in two or more areas of expertise at a moment's notice. The prepared Traveller character carries a set of these superskill wafers, and keeps them close by.

A popular application of skill wafers are the Talents. For example, a "Low Wafer" may have the Hibernate talent at level 15, allowing a player in danger of death to place himself into Hibernation. This is also a popular choice for space travel, since a player may put himself into a safe state of hibernation and sleep the travel time away in a Cr1,000 bunk, instead of an expensive stateroom, or a dangerous low berth.

Another application is for sentient ships to carry skill wafers. The ship offers to hire otherwise unskilled personnel to crew vital gap positions on the ship, in exchange for free passage in a luxury stateroom.
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Last edited by robject; April 26th, 2018 at 12:38 PM.. Reason: obfuscated some names
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