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T4 - Marc Miller's Traveller Discussion of T4 - Marc Miller's Traveller from Imperium Games and the Milieu 0 setting.

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Old September 28th, 2020, 03:15 AM
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Default T4 Marc Miller's Traveller Another Look

While working on cleaning up the garage (an endless task), I came across a box that I clearly had not looked at in a while, like maybe 1997 or so. Included in it were a bunch of stuff from working GenCon in 1996, plus some AD&D 2nd Edition books that I got for working, but also a copy of Marc Miller's Traveller, aka T4, autographed by Marc, that I had picked up to go with my previous Traveller material.

Scanning through it quickly, I came across a fair amount of underlining which I had done as I was going through it. All I can think of is that I was going through it, and then needed to clean up the house, and put it into the file box with the rest of the 1996 GenCon stuff. The quick scan also administered a boot to my butt for not keeping it out and looking through it more closely. I only underline when something catches my interest or I think needs to be worked on. Clearly, after that quick look, I need to go back and take a longer and more careful look at the rules. I had gotten some of the books on T4 from DriveThru, and I did think that the Pocket Empire book was well done, but now I need to go back and take a better look at the core rules.

One is never too old to learn, or in this case, relearn something. Based on the underlining, this rule set really caught my interest, far more than either MegaTraveller or Traveller: The New Era ever did.
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Old September 29th, 2020, 05:35 AM
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In a sense, you will be reacquainting with your younger self.
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Old January 12th, 2021, 04:39 AM
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There is a lot I like in T4. But there are counterbalancing issues that make it difficult to sell to a game group as a system for our next adventure. Variable dice is OK, generally. Even for the casual players who have to be told exactly what to roll each time.

However, roll low is a tough sell with many players. Still, groups can be talked into FGU games and BRP games, so it's not a showstopper with all players.

The increased granularity on the variable dice really is good. Half dice are an annoyance, though.

It's a great system, with blemishes. I have used it for a solo campaign, and mined it and its supplements heavily for my other Traveller games.
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Old January 12th, 2021, 05:53 AM
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I agree, across the whole range on T4 material there is a lot of great stuff.

I am a great fan of the T4 method for damage resolution, and I like the psionics rules - so both of those have been 'adapted' to my CT+ folder...

I dislike the task system and the knock on effect to character skill level acquisition.
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Old January 12th, 2021, 11:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike wightman View Post
I agree, across the whole range on T4 material there is a lot of great stuff.
Agreed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mike wightman View Post
. . . I am a great fan of the T4 method for damage resolution . . .
Triple thumbs-up!
I think the system is both brilliant and simple.
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Old January 19th, 2021, 12:53 PM
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Granted, I was a late convert to T4. And, admittedly, I think it could have been play-tested a bit more before it was released. But with only a few tweaks, I have grown to really appreciate this incarnation of Traveller.

I understand Traveller, in any of its incarnations, is often used for its basic rules in a setting designed by individual Referees. But the Milieu 0 setting has truly sparked my imagination. As much as I enjoyed the fiction of the Third Imperium, sometimes it felt "constrained." In the classic 1107 setting, there was no place that hadn't been already explored. Every sun, every world, had been visited by someone going back hundreds of years, (at least.) The idea that there was so much uncharted space in Milieu 0 is what set this edition far apart than any of the others. That it was perfectly feasible for players to be the first to step onto an unknown world that had been out of contact for hundreds of years, opened the floodgates of my imagination. It is easy to install a sense of mystery into such a setting. And imagine a game where the players are the first to make contact with the Vargr, or the Aslan, who, to them, are just entries, almost cryptids, contained within some old, dusty computer file. And what of the Vilani? Imagine being the scout crew that re-contacts the Vilani Empire, with Vilani characters on board coming face-to-face with people from the long lost home-world of their distant ancestors. The intrigue that might result is staggering. Do the Vilani from the Third Imperium uphold the Emperor's will? Or do they sympathize with their long lost ancestors, and throw their fortunes in with them?

I have since become a bigger and bigger fan of the variable dice Task system, as well. I feel it was truly innovative. Several games use the idea of rolling a target number or less. (Champions comes to mind almost immediately.) And the half-dice is not a problem in my experience. Several companies sell a d3, which is simply a d6 with 1 to 3 painted on two sides each. Mark one of the "1s" and one of the "3s" with a dot, and you have the means necessary to determine a spectacular success or a critical failure.

Again, with just a couple of tweaks to the game mechanics of T4, and you're in business. I'm just sorry it didn't quite live up to its potential "out of the box."
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Old January 19th, 2021, 08:13 PM
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I am a big fan of Millieu 0 Campaign book. The one combined that Millieu 0 and First Survey sourcebook.
1.It has those extra pages between the two sections showing the growth of the 3I between 0 and 200.
but M0 also had great stuff:
2.It has canon, in-universe origins of TAS, how the UWP system came about, the original Imperial spy network (which has nothing to do with the Imperial Navy or Scout Service heh, heh, heh)
3.Tantalizing tidbits about the Julian Protectorate who no-one besides me or Pakkrat would be interested in.

T4 also had the best sidebar ever "What is Poverty at Tech Level 12?"
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Old January 19th, 2021, 09:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nathan Brazil View Post
...
3.Tantalizing tidbits about the Julian Protectorate who no-one besides me or Pakkrat would be interested in.

T4 also had the best sidebar ever "What is Poverty at Tech Level 12?"
I have been trying to get a campaign going in the Julian Protectorate for a very long time, inspired by Jason Kemps Stellar Reaches fanzines. Ill have to skim a little more closely as Id missed it here. Very cool region of space with a cool history.

And yeah, that sidebar is excellent
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Old January 20th, 2021, 11:45 AM
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Quote:
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T4 also had the best sidebar ever "What is Poverty at Tech Level 12?"
Interesting. Can you summarize its points?
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Old January 20th, 2021, 12:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike wightman View Post
I agree, across the whole range on T4 material there is a lot of great stuff.

I am a great fan of the T4 method for damage resolution, and I like the psionics rules - so both of those have been 'adapted' to my CT+ folder...

I dislike the task system and the knock on effect to character skill level acquisition.

I just have the T4 CSC (bought under the theory that I can homerule any stats/cost but the idea of the gizmos is the thing). I got a smidgen of an idea what combat is like from stats context, but a quick summary would be helpful.
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