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Agent of the Imperium Discussion of Marc Miller's Novel, Agent of the Imperium.

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Old July 27th, 2016, 03:08 PM
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Originally Posted by robject View Post
Well, them's the plans anyway, and we all know what happens to plans.
Only time will tell. Who's writing it?
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Old July 27th, 2016, 03:44 PM
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Originally Posted by aramis View Post
Only time will tell. Who's writing it?
Last I heard it was MJD.

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Old July 29th, 2016, 02:35 PM
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When I started playing role-playign games back around 1980 I started with two games: D&D and Traveller. From the very start I felt that the settings for both games were very fertile grounds for creating epic adventures and stories as they grew. And I was right, both the Third Imperium and Forgotten Realms settings went on to become the starting points for countless stories and adventures that have been told everywhere from basements and kitchen tables to novels and even television and movies. I mean how many other RPG settings can boast that they were the inspiration for a show like Firefly? And I have to believe that somewhere along the line the creators of other books/shows like The Expanse, Dark Matter, and Killjoys have all been exposed to Traveller at some point (or something else influenced by it).

Both settings have grown to the point where trying to collect all the information on either one in some official manner is a monumental task, just look at our efforts to keep the Traveller Wiki up-to-date for an example, but the Forgotten Realms setting has grown exponentially compared to the Third Imperium over the same amount of time. Now I know there are tons of reasons for this ranging from the fact that they are different genres to business "stuff" that is in the past and can't be changed (which is why I am not going into all that stuff!), but I think one reason that is worth talking about are books. Over the years WotC has done a very admirable job when it comes to the novels and books that expand on the Forgotten Realms. So admirable that I once created a database and used a bar code scanner to keep track of which books I owned and had read since there were so many of them. There are so many that if you walk into a library or book store they are in their own section. It is amazing how much content is out there. Over the years I learned so much about the Forgotten Realms and it's history from those books that it (at one time) was more complete than my knowledge of real history! IMHO, this expanded collection of source material is what is missing from Traveller and the Third Imperium setting.

Before becoming a member of these forums I didn't even know that there was Traveller fiction out there at all. I never remember seeing it in the book stores when I was combing the Sci-Fi and Fantasy sections for new stuff to read (back when I had time to read a book a week). Needless to say I am very excited that AotI was written and published and just as proud to be the owner of an autographed hard copy from the Kickstarter. I think novels (and novellas) are an excellent way to add to the lore and story of the Third Imperium and I look forward to more books, hopefully from multiple authors, in the future.

Now, to answer the question: YES! In the past 2+ years since I have restarted playing Traveller I have been reading everything I can about the Third Imperium. I have bought (way to many) books on DriveThruRPG, from hobby shops, and even gotten them as gifts from friends, for just about all the versions of the game to quench my thirst for information on the setting. I have spent countless hours reading the Wiki, these forums, /r/Traveller on reddit, and many of the fan sites out there. I thought I had a pretty good idea on how the Imperium worked, that is until I read AotI. Knowing that there are these "personalities" out there with that kind of power to change the course of history adds an entirely new layer to things. The new (to me at least) sophonts that were introduced are awesome. I find myself wishing that Marc would churn out another and another every few months for me to devour, though I know that is not feasible. Learning about how the Imperium, and Mr. Bland in particular, is concerned about "The Wave", the "Black Ships", and all these other things that are still coming is awesome. It allows for a whole new dimension of adventures and stories to be created.

And I think that the books that Mongoose has/is publishing on the setting such as the Borderland Profile series, are a great step in the right direction to adding to the setting. I just think we need more fiction to make it more accessible to non-Traveller players and possibly get them interested in the game.

tl;dr: Hell YES it changed things for me! Now where is the next book?!
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Old August 10th, 2016, 01:07 AM
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Originally Posted by mike wightman View Post
Just wondered what the novel has done for your interpretation of the setting?
Very little, to be honest, aside from giving form to the "apartness" of the Navy.
We are all playing different games that happen to have the same name.

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Old August 18th, 2016, 02:54 AM
Orion Shipyards Orion Shipyards is offline
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Originally Posted by mike wightman View Post
A ship captain/fleet admiral coming across a problem has three options:
1. deal with it;
2. send to the nearest subsector duke for guidance/orders/authority to act - this may take a couple of months;
3. activate an agent wafer.

Note that options 2 and 3 are both passing the buck...
Well... Not exactly. There were a number of situations where some expert, cadre of experts, or computer program look at the combined threat analysis and decided this was a situation where the wafer had to be activated. If the situation you're in meets those criteria, you're getting a wafer agent, or you're violating protocol.

There were those situations where someone just felt "Maybe it'd be smart to get the input of someone with a lifetime of experience in this matter before I make a final decision..." and ended up waking up and being ordered around by someone with massive imperial authority because... Well, maybe they didn't think through the whole range of Edict 97 ramifications or something.

IMTU we have Imperial Marshals that are similar in concept to the Agent. So, we've had some games and campaigns that bear a passing resemblance to specific episodes of the story in that sense.

We use subdermal computer/communicators rather than specific chip-jacks, but skill and knowledge chips haven't figured very prominently in our games. The idea of a full-consciousness download that could overlay and subdue the user is interesting and rife with potential. Subderms are about as common in space professionals in MTU as the wafer-jack seems to be in Agent.

The feudal government influence / model reaches further and deeper in my universe than in much of canon, so the enhanced Imperial authority felt right at home.

The biggest single way the novel changed my view and will likely change my GMing is that, over the course of so many years of Traveller with mostly the same players in largely the same game universe, it seems like I haven't been emphasizing the other races nearly enough... It's been ages since anyone really encountered anyone who wasn't Aslan, Vargr, or Humaniti. My players all know what a Droyne or Hiver or K'kree is, but they never really show up, and - well, like I said, it's been ages since they interacted with anything else.

That'll probably change soon.
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