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Old December 26th, 2017, 07:32 PM
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Default Traveller Candy n Dressin'

This thread is dedicated to the hard working Refs out there--those that strive to put on a memorable game for their players....

I remember my first read through The Traveller Adventure, all those decades ago, when I was going over the details of Aramis. There was an air tax! The city is one, large (not giant), sprawling city inside of an old mine, on a world that will kill anyone on the surface without protective gear. And, the city had slidewalks whereever you went. There was even a map where the slidewalk was broken!

What cool details, I thought, to make that place memorable.

Reading that taught me to be a better Ref. I was young when I read it, learning to be a DM/GM/Ref. And, it taught me about the details. Those things that will really bring a location to life.

Today, I was reading more of Asimov's Foundation, and I read about how the character I'm currently following in the tale, Gaal, needed to get to a taxi (and air taxi). He approached a booth and bought a ticket. The man that sold it to him said, "Watch the ticket. It will glow as long as you're going in the right direction."

So, Gaal used it to find the taxi ramp.

I thought, how cool is this? That's something I could use in a Traveller game--some window dressing to make a world memorable.

Another thing that happened in the book, which I'm not sure is a great idea, is that a blue line appeared in the floor. As long as Gaal followed the blue line, he would not get lost and reach his destination in the sprawling starport.

In the book, there were thousands of criss-crossing lines, all of different color. You just followed your color.

But, I was thinking...for a Traveller game, what if the line appears in the floor, or the walls, or even the ceiling, but that one person--the person following the colored line--is the only one that can see it?

Maybe the user needs a special headset. Maybe it's just high technology. The Ref will have to apply the correct Tech Level to the idea.

Speaking of TL, I love looking at UWPs and trying to figure out how things are on a world. For example, Pysadi, in the Aramis subsector, has a tainted atmosphere. Yet, the world is TL 4, which puts it in early WWII era.

How do people survive on this world? The buildings have to be filtered somehow? But, you're limited by the TL 4 of the world.

When my players went through there, I speculated about natural filters that were used on the buildings. I was thinking log cabins, with a lot of detail on using a tar like substance to seal the place and make it air-tight.

Then, the actual filters built into the buildings, that must be changed every so often, were made primarily from sea sponges.

Air-tight log cabins and air filters made from sea sponges. Their filter masks were akin those bulky WWI gas masks with the screw on filter.

All this, as it came out in my game, did for Pysadi what MWM's description of the slidewalks and air tax did for Aramis. It made the place very memorable for my players.

I was watching one of my favorite films last night. Minority Report, with Tom Cruise. There's lots of stuff a good Traveller Ref could steal from that movie for his game, but I especially like the eye readers that are everywhere. That's kinda like a futuristic version of cameras that are watching our every move. You walk into a store. The camera picks up your eye print. Then, the mechanical salesman in the speaker starts to say something like, "Mr. Jones! Come back for another pair of those high-top sneakers?"

What thoughts do you have for some candy n dressin'? Stuff that another Ref might find extremely useful for his game?
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