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In My Traveller Universe Detail what parts of Traveller you do (or don't) use in your campaign.

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  #11  
Old September 22nd, 2020, 01:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Condottiere View Post
[I]Calculating the value of a parsec
By the 2015 definition, 1 au of arc length subtends an angle of 1″ at the center of the circle of radius 1 pc. Converting from degree/minute/second units to radians
. . .

Rather dependent on what one supposes is the Third Rock from the Sun's unique orbit.

So the Universe really does revolve around the Earth.
Yes, I get that. Again, this is exactly why I prefer it not be an exact equivalence, but a close-enough approximation, that the "parsec" gets redefined as "the maximum distance of a Jump-one jump."

Just as a "league" has varied definitions--or a mile (nautical vs. statute, and other historical forms). They were "close enough" to get on with. And, let's face it, "parsec" is rather arbitrary in the game--just a measure on the grid, that may (or may not) correspond very closely to the actual universe we happen to live in--not even considering the two vs three-dimensional state of the jump-space.
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Old September 22nd, 2020, 05:22 PM
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That's the game explanation, but not the in-universe explanation. I can accept it, but the exact equivalence is harder to explain.
How hard is to to explain? Player A asks why the values are what they are and you say, "Quit meta-gaming". . Seriously it was BOUND to be a value that corresponded to SOME planet in the galaxy. It it aligned with the values for Efate would they be asking???
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Old September 22nd, 2020, 07:36 PM
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The in-universe explanation is "It's something that's driven generations of the greatest Jump Space physicists in the universe to explore vast new reaches of chronic alcoholism and/or religion."

If that's not sufficient, "A Wizard Did It." The wizard, of course, being a particular advanced mutant Chirper, some 300,000 years ago. They had a peculiar fascination with Earth for some reason, and this may have something to do with it.
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Old September 22nd, 2020, 10:37 PM
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An author is going to use terms for distance and time which his readers are familiar with or which can be easily explained. If he does not, he is going to have a hard time getting his audience to relate to the story.

In the early days of "Astounding" science fiction magazine, an author by the name of Sewell Peaslee Wright had a series of stories about the Special Patrol Service where he sometimes mentioned a different way of keeping time, based on the system of another planet. The difficulty was he had to continually relate the given different time measure to Earth time measurement in order to be understood by the readers (see included quote from the September 1930 issue, which can be found on Project Gutenberg). While the stories are pretty good, the continual problem of explaining the passage of time is something that I find annoying. In his later stories, he drops the use of the different time measurement.

Quote:
"Correct," I smiled. The Universal method of reckoning time had never appealed to me. For those of my readers who may only be familiar with Earth time measurements, an enar is about eighteen Earth days, an enaren a little less than two Earth days, and an enaro nearly four and a half hours. The Universal system has the advantage, I admit, of a decimal division; but I have found it clumsy always. I may be stubborn and old-fashioned, but a clock face with only ten numerals and one hand still strikes me as being unbeautiful and inefficient.
I have no problem at all with the various range of measurements, as they are all understandable without extensive and repeated explanations.
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Old September 23rd, 2020, 10:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BRover View Post
That's the game explanation, but not the in-universe explanation. I can accept it, but the exact equivalence is harder to explain.
My favorite quote from "The Terminator":

Quote:
Sarah Connor: [disbelieving] Are you saying it's from the future?
Kyle Reese: One possible future. From your point of view. I don't know tech stuff.
This one quote adroitly addressed and hand waved away the challenges of time travel in storytelling.

"How come Jumps are 1 week long?" "Heck, I don't know, I'm just the navigator -- I don't know tech stuff. They just are."
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Old September 25th, 2020, 05:58 PM
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Whereas I can say, "Actually, it averages 163 hours. If you need more precision, 163.36 hours. And the Imperial parsec is 3.21 light years."
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Old October 9th, 2020, 10:57 PM
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I think this xkcd helped inspire me . . .

https://xkcd.com/1047/
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There are three types of Travellers with Math-3+: those who can count, and those who cannot.

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Old October 13th, 2020, 02:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BRover View Post
One of the inconsistencies I've noticed in Traveller is the units of the world. In game explanations, that is. Why, for example, should Jumps so neatly correspond to Earth-weeks and parsecs? Even one being exact would be a strange coincidence, but both?
The map parsec doesn't correspond to the Earth-centric parsec at all. For example, it is 2 map parsecs from Sol to Alpha Centauri, but only 1.35 pc in real space. None of the distances and positions on the Traveller map correspond with real distances and positions.
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