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2300AD & 2320 Discussion of the original 2300AD from GDW, the revised 2300 from Mongoose Publishing, or QLI's 2320AD.

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Old January 16th, 2008, 11:01 AM
Anders Anders is offline
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Default Canon Names for Beta Canum Planets

What are the planets in the Beta Canum system called?

Colonial Atlas claims they are called "Beta Canum 1-8", which sounds surprisingly boring. This seems confirmed by Invasion and everywhere I look in the old and new material. The problem is that this sounds like an exceedingly unlikely state to remain since people - and organisations like ESA - love naming things. And if there are no official names no doubt some local weekly magazine will have a competition that produce silly names that stick.

Any canon on this?


There is no shortage on possible naming schemes. The star is named Chara, greek for "Joy" which is a bit of collision with Joi, but is alternatively called Asterion ("ruler of the stars"), the name for a sacred king of Crete. So one simple scheme would use his family: Neleus, Chloris, Europa (good ESA quasi-pun name for BC4, despite the collision with the Jupiter moon), Rhadamanthus, Minos, Sarpedon and Tectamus. To get eight one could add his famous grandson Minotauros. Zeus could also be snuck in there, but I seem to recall that that name is already taken by some gas giant somewhere; otherwise it would make sense for the outer giant.

One could run with the hunting dog scheme, naming the planets after famous dogs. "The Kafers are discharging around Fido!" Ah, maybe not... Although Laika (Sputnik 2), Belka and Strelka (Sputnik 5), Boy, Druzhok, Sultan, Tygan and Zolotisty (Pavlov's dogs), Robot (found the cave paintings at Lascaux) and Diamond (Newton's dog) certainly could work. And there is no shortage of mythological dogs.
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Old January 16th, 2008, 11:52 AM
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Nothing canonical that I am aware of. Given that the ESA seemed to be particularly uninspired when it came to naming anything in the BCV system, the boring names are 'official'. That being said, there may well be local names for the planets, widely used, but not on the official charts, or perhaps appearing as addendums to the official charts.
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Old January 16th, 2008, 01:06 PM
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While I can accept boring names as canon and "official ESA", it seems extremely odd given the nice names used in nearby systems.

Of course, one plausible explanation might be that ESA got bogged down in a big prestige battle: the captain of the French squadron in 2181 claimed his right to name the planets. However, his superiors disliked his suggestions and replaced them with a new official list. Meanwhile ARI set up shop in 2182, and "corrected" the names. Quarrel in ESA ensues. The IAU gets dragged in and refuses to take a side, giving everything numerical names "until the co-discoverers can reach an agreement". 140 years later that has still not happened.

This would allow for at least two competing naming systems, one French (I would go for the classicist names I suggested above) and one Bavarian/German system (maybe teutonic deities: Alcis (BC 1/2), Wulthus, Nerthus, Woden, Tiw, Donar and Fullo). And the locals quite like Captain Muret's names based on his girlfriends...
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Old January 16th, 2008, 03:04 PM
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Sure, and the Libertine Traders may well have a different set of names, plucked from their fairly rich, though relatively young, folklore. They've been around for 150 years, after all, and have developed their own customs and (largely tongue-in-cheek) mythology.
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Old January 16th, 2008, 05:37 PM
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I think a characterful way of naming the stars would be in Spanish. Perhaps the initial surveyors were from the ESA (or I guess in the Francophone future it'd be ASE). For whatever reason, they didn't like the names the initial expedition gave the planet, so just named them 1-8.

However, in the meantime a Brazilian or Argentine ship slipped into the system and did their own survey and promptly named the planets. Given the history of acrimony between the South American powers and the ESA, it'd naturally follow that the ESA would never accept such names. Perhaps this row has more or less been going on for decades now. The locals use "Frenchized" versions of the Spanish names, the names show up on all of the maps in the Latin Finger and the Chinese Arm (the Chinese successors don't particularly care for the ESA either, after all). America perhaps goes back and forth on this, but puts the names on the map with an asterisk and a note "The names of these worlds are in dispute."

There'd be a moon or some similar body in the system named "Nome", perhaps. Originally, it was named "Nome" as a joke by an American on Nome, Alaska, which is widely believed to be a corruption of "Name?" because the mapmaker didn't know the name of the town. Alternatively, the name might be "Gnome" as the "G" in "gnome" is silent, so they heard "nome" and assumed it was named after the mythological creature instead of a place in Alaska...
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Old January 22nd, 2008, 08:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin View Post
Sure, and the Libertine Traders may well have a different set of names, plucked from their fairly rich, though relatively young, folklore. They've been around for 150 years, after all, and have developed their own customs and (largely tongue-in-cheek) mythology.
Good point. I like the LTs. Given that starships are relatively cheap in the setting (so that minor companies and families could buy them) and the necessities of outpost culture they actually make sense. But so far there doesn't seem to be much description of them. That might make another good area for a sourcebook (or online writeups).

LTs might not just have their own astrographical folklore, but also quite a lot of observations in the family databases. A group that has travelled extensively in a region will likely have a veritable treasure-trove of raw data that might just happen to contain the info the PCs desperately need... now they just need to get the database somehow, as well as decipher the format created by crazy cousin Finn during particularly boring trips.
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