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MegaTraveller Discuss of the MegaTraveller ruleset and the Rebellion Milieu

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  #11  
Old September 28th, 2018, 07:41 AM
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Originally Posted by robject View Post
Rubber meets the road time...

Indeed.

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The breaking news wave WILL catch up before 7 jumps are completed, and he then leaves the TJ Network and goes stealth, heading towards the Rift. So I think he leaves the network when he's near or just over the Vland border. 6 or 7 weeks. On the other hand, he could be in the soup after only the first jump.
Agreed to both. I think an important point is that Windhoek won't be commandeering a TJ. He forges orders to board a TJ already scheduled to depart for some destination. He's not taking control of one and directing it towards a destination of his choosing. If he were choosing destinations, he could stay ahead of the "wavefront" longer because his escape path would be "straighter". Instead, he's using his forgeries to select the next best destination from among the few available at each stop.

IMHO, his claim that he changes ships 4 times in several weeks supports the idea he's traveling deadhead and choosing between whatever previously scheduled TJs can get him further from Capital. Taking command of a TJ and ordering it on a voyage of several consecutive six parsec jumps would draw the attention of both the ship's crew and the officials of the systems he passes through. Such orders could also be "beyond" his ability to quickly forge.

He's not Jonathan Bland living in a wafer, armed with codes controlling all Imperial computer system and backed by the full force of an Imperial Edict.

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I'd say that path...
Agreed. All good, logical, and plausible choices.

I wasn't looking at specific routes as much as I was looking at what Windhoek's "plot" or "plan" might be or, more accurately, what his "plots" and "plans" might be. He's going to plan on A, but he's also going to have B, C, D, etc. ready. "One goal, Many paths" and all that. His INI training would have taught him that and the statement uploaded on Inarli suggests as much.

The way I usually write adventures is to figure out the protagonist's/antagonist's "plot" so I can then look for places where the players can "intersect" with it. I break the "plot" into "elements" and "events" which I then lay out in a crude Gannt chart to maintain their spacial and temporal positions relative to each other. Each of those entries is then a possible point of interaction. Windhoek's "plot" breaks down into two sections: Speed and Stealth.

Speed
  • Decides to run for the "border". (Presumed to be spinward)
  • Decides on "course" through Vland-Corridor-"West".
  • Forges deadhead orders.
  • Leaves Capital on first available TJ.
  • Switches between TJs because he's "deadhead".
  • Selects next TJ based on it's destination so "course" to "border" isn't "perfect".
  • News wavefront catches up with him.
  • Drops speed for stealth.

Stealth
  • "Border" is still the goal.
  • "Course" to "border" is still Vland-Corridor-"Wast'.
  • Travel along "course" slower, uses various means, has static periods.
  • Possible Fork - Corridor "falls".
  • Possible Fork - Vland independence.
  • Potential decision - Drop Vland-Corridor route for trans-Rift.
  • Potential new "plan" - Cross the Rift.

That should get some of my muddled thinking across. I'm looking at where, when, why, what, and how. Where is Windhoek? When is he there? Why is he there? What is he doing? How could the players interact with him? Encountering Windhoek on 132-1116 aboard that first TJ leaving Capital is going to be a very different proposition than encountering a low profile Windhoek in 1117 skulking around the rimward end of Vland looking for passage through Corriodor or a disguised Windhoek in Gushemege trying to join up with a group planning on crossing the Rift.
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  #12  
Old September 28th, 2018, 10:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Whipsnade View Post
I think an important point is that Windhoek won't be commandeering a TJ. He forges orders to board a TJ already scheduled to depart for some destination. He's not taking control of one and directing it towards a destination of his choosing. [...]

...his claim that he changes ships 4 times in several weeks supports the idea he's traveling deadhead and choosing between whatever previously scheduled TJs can get him further from Capital. [...]

He's not Jonathan Bland living in a wafer, ....
Agreed, and worth making the point re his mode of travel.


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I wasn't looking at specific routes as much as I was looking at what Windhoek's "plots" and "plans" might be. He's going to plan on A, but he's also going to have B, C, D, etc. ready. "One goal, Many paths" and all that.
Agreed (and partway through the exercise I realized that the actual route taken is not the point).

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The way I usually write adventures is to figure out the protagonist's/antagonist's "plot" so I can then look for places where the players can "intersect" with it. I break the "plot" into "elements" and "events" which I then lay out in a crude Gannt chart [...]
That's exactly how this will work.

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Speed (points)

Stealth (points)
Tables ready for reference!

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Encountering Windhoek on 132-1116 aboard that first TJ leaving Capital is going to be a very different proposition than encountering a low profile Windhoek in 1117 skulking around the rimward end of Vland looking for passage through Corriodor or a disguised Windhoek in Gushemege trying to join up with a group planning on crossing the Rift.
Absolutely. If Windhoek's movement is his own kind of probability wavefront, then I can map out likely positions of that wave over time, and noting a reasonable error calculation to make it easy for the referee to "fudge with understanding".
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  #13  
Old September 28th, 2018, 11:44 AM
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Originally Posted by robject View Post
If Windhoek's movement is his own kind of probability wavefront...

Exactly. That's why his statement is uploaded on Inarli. It creates another "wavefront" those chasing him must take into account. It increases the noise.

Every time "Windhoek's Testimony" appears and reappears in a system's news feed, social media, or other network, the people chasing Windhoek must make an effort to trace where is came from. Did Windhoek share it in person? Did someone just "copypasta" from another system's network? Did the person who upload it get it directly from Windhoek or through intermediaries? What does the original document look like? What are the most common versions? When did they change and who changed them?

They're trying to track the ripples Windhoek make as he moves in "pond". It's hard because about the same Windhoek started making ripples, he took care to toss in a handful of pebbles. Adding the mess, people keep tossing new pebbles in at random too.

Windhoek is going to be very interested in adding ripples, in adding noise, because I realized last night that he's not going to ride TJs for as long as I initially thought.

I was putzing around with Travellermap last night, looking at the "wavefront" map in Rebellion Sourcebook, and doing some thinking. (Travellermap and RS are great, me thinking not so much.) Windhoek's "goal" in the Imperial border which we've decided means "Go West". His fastest route that goal is Vland-Corridor-Deneb-"West". That fastest route might not be a possible route and Windhoek could know that before he starts.

If he can stay aboard TJs he can reach Vland in 10 jumps. The trouble begins when we remember Windhoek can't physically transfer between TJs as fast as an electronic message can be sent by radio or laser between the same. RS has news of the Assassination reaching Vland by jump6 courier 70 days after the event. That's ten ~7 day jumps with time to transfer the messages between couriers electronically.

Windhoek can't beat that. More importantly, Windhoek knows he can't beat that.

To me, that means Windhoek is going to leave the Imperiallines' TJ network sooner than later. He's going to use the TJs to sprint away from Capital, ideally towards Vland, hopefully to coreward and/or spinward, but really in any direction which is immediately available. He's going to leave the TJ network sooner than later because he knows he's going to be behind the "wavefront" sooner than later.

This helps us because it gives us more opportunities more earlier for the players' to "intersect" with Windhoek.
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Old September 28th, 2018, 03:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Whipsnade View Post
If he can stay aboard TJs he can reach Vland in 10 jumps. The trouble begins when we remember Windhoek can't physically transfer between TJs as fast as an electronic message can be sent by radio or laser between the same. RS has news of the Assassination reaching Vland by jump6 courier 70 days after the event. That's ten ~7 day jumps with time to transfer the messages between couriers electronically.

Windhoek can't beat that. More importantly, Windhoek knows he can't beat that.

To me, that means Windhoek is going to leave the Imperiallines' TJ network sooner than later. He's going to use the TJs to sprint away from Capital, ideally towards Vland, hopefully to coreward and/or spinward, but really in any direction which is immediately available. He's going to leave the TJ network sooner than later because he knows he's going to be behind the "wavefront" sooner than later.

This helps us because it gives us more opportunities more earlier for the players' to "intersect" with Windhoek.
THANK YOU for finding the D+70 reference. That does indeed reduce Windhoek's time aboard TJ to one, maybe two jumps. And then things get hard. Logan's Run... 3 Days of the Condor... taken to an extreme.

So right - an outbound TJ will be convenient, but he'll know he has to plan to go to ground even as soon as the first destination is reached.
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Old September 28th, 2018, 04:07 PM
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THANK YOU for finding the D+70 reference.

Sorry. I should have mentioned that map earlier.

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That does indeed reduce Windhoek's time aboard TJ to one, maybe two jumps.
Agreed. He leaves Capital aboard a TJ and later claims he shifted between "four ships" within a "few weeks". Not four TJs, mind you, but four ships. He's off the Imperiallines' network and thus off the Imperium's radar within a jump or two. I'd suggest he jumped once aboard a TJ and then went to ground.

Quote:
And then things get hard. Logan's Run... 3 Days of the Condor... taken to an extreme.
Most certainly. My initial ideas about "Speed" then "Stealth" were wrong. It's Sprint then Stealth. He jumps "openly" as soon and as far away from Capital as he can manage, most likely only once, and then goes "off grid".

His goal is still the same and his preferred route is still the same. He's just going to be traveling along that route towards that goal much more slowly.

Quote:
So right - an outbound TJ will be convenient, but he'll know he has to plan to go to ground even as soon as the first destination is reached.
Agreed. I think I've sussed out his initial destination too; Fornol/Core.

Think about it. What messages are going to be sent out first, to whom, and the where? In what command center did Windhoek forge his orders? In what service does Windhoek serve? Where does Windhoek want to go?

The officials on Capital will be in shock but there's one thing they're going to do automatically: Tell the Navy what has happened. Along with many other couriers, some of those TJs are going to be jumping from Capital to naval bases. Looking at the jump6 rosette around Capital shows fourteen naval bases. Looking in the direction Windhoek wants to go drops that number to three; Depot, Knabbib, and Fornol.

The Depot is 6 parsecs off, but it's population is 400K and it's a depot with all the security that entails. Knabbib is has 80 million people in which hide and look for transportation, but it's only 3 parsecs away. Fornol is 5 parsecs away and has 7 billion people.

Fornol is further away and has a larger "ocean" for our lone "fish" to swim in. After Fornol just where Windhoek goes will depend on just what sort of transportation he can "promote". He'll prefer to travel towards Vland. He'll settle for just getting further away from Capital. By the time he reaches the Vland Sector, however, events may "closed" his preferred Vland-Corridor-Deneb-"West" route. That's when he'll start looking at Plans B, C, D, etc.
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Old September 29th, 2018, 10:20 AM
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This is good stuff, Whip. I'm going to collate these notes into a document and post it.
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Old September 29th, 2018, 10:25 AM
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Just one question in all this:

no one has even considered the possibility Windhoek was i nfact a second assassin and Lucan version to be true ?

In this scenario, Lucan would not initially be the villain he is depicted as, but someone that did not endure well the responsibilities of the power that fell on him, becoming more paranoid as time goes on and he finds himself surrounded of enemies...
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Old September 29th, 2018, 11:17 AM
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Not in this thread - but in a previous thread I did raise this very point:

http://www.travellerrpg.com/CotI/Dis...5&postcount=21

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Has anyone ever toyed with the idea that Lucan wasn't a mustache twirling pantomime villain, but was a legitimate heir and eventually won the rebellion?
By this I meant that his version was true and therefore by extension Windhook is a second assassin and is probably fleeing back to Dulinor's safe space.

There is one element to Windhooks story I find contrived.

Door opens - assassin enters - guard kills assassin - announcement that Strephon has been assassinated - Lucan immediately improvises the plan to calmly kill everyone in the room - Windhook escapes while Lucan is murdering the others. Can anyone else see a flaw in this version of events?
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Old September 29th, 2018, 12:08 PM
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Previous posts were moved from the thread Another Strephon at one poster request

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Can a portion of this thread be split off and moved (e.g. to Lone Star)? I feel this content needs a proper place.
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Old September 29th, 2018, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by mike wightman View Post
Ahh, Lieutenant Windhook. What great adventure potential completely wasted.

The first MT campaign could have had PCs involved in spiriting him away to safety - instead we got a five year fast forward to 1121.

Just imagine if the first adventure had not been that contrived, ludicrous, awful 'nail' mission, but rather had been a free trader crew approached by a patron to take on a working passenger...

I'm tempted to write it.
I thought the same when I discovered MT a few years back... My thought was a sympathetic Noble and his yacht crew fleeing Capital for the Marches or a Free Trader doing the same...
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