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In My 2300 Universe Discussion of non-canon ideas for use in your 2300 Universe

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  #11  
Old August 24th, 2016, 04:19 PM
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Default Would you use your characters back story as a means of establishing the setting?

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Originally Posted by colinfit20 View Post

Would you use your characters back story as a means of establishing the setting or have them come together as the conflict began?
Frankly, over the years, I have used both your suggestions to establish a setting. Both certainly work. But for this setting, in particular, I wanted the characters all in the same place when the war broke out. So I asked the players to make characters with the idea they would be the crew of an old rickety Ukrainian space station, with a French "guest," a scientist doing research using their equipment. There were several reasons for this.

First, I didn't want them on the actual "planet" of Aurore when the Kafer attacked. (Aurore is actually a large moon that has been colonized which is in orbit around a super gas giant named Tithonus.) I made it a point for the space station to be orbiting the opposite side of Tithonus than Aurore, so their space station was "hidden" from the main armada. Kafer scouts did come and harass them, but they certainly weren't overwhelmed by thousands of Kafer troops landing on the outskirts of town. They could see, and hear over the radio, the commotion of the war on Aurore. But they were somewhat removed from it initially. I felt this gave them a chance to get their bearings after the initial invasion, and to be able to surgically implant themselves anywhere they wanted to once food became an issue on the station.

And, second, the idea of having several technicians, and a scientist, working together gave a great mix of skills I felt would be handy for them to possess. One of the players spent some time trying to figure out the Kafer's technology, while the scientist character would concentrate on their physiology. And between all of them, they could fix just about any piece of equipment you could name. Combat was important, I suppose. But they were far more successful programing drop ships, and using laser beams to send false signals to throw the Kafer off their trail.

Now having said all that, that is certainly not the only way to create a compelling story. All of your character ideas above would certainly be just as exciting. I'm not sure how easy it would be to bring such a diverse group of people together in a story, but that doesn't make it impossible. With a little imagination, I'm sure some kind of thread could bring them together in order to face a common enemy.

Last edited by ManOfGrey; August 24th, 2016 at 04:31 PM..
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Old August 24th, 2016, 04:52 PM
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Originally Posted by ManOfGrey View Post
I made it a point for the space station to be orbiting the opposite side of Tithonus than Aurore, so their space station was "hidden" from the main armada. Kafer scouts did come and harass them, but they certainly weren't overwhelmed by thousands of Kafer troops landing on the outskirts of town.
Really?

I would think the Kafers would wipe the orbits clean of anything posing a threat or aiding in tactical intelligence while they had supremacy before setting a foot down on the planet.

Doesn't really change your story. The invasion can begin and your players can notice that the fleet is turning its eyes on the station, so that shuttle planet side is looking less risky which each passing hour. That way they can set down someplace that wasn't instantly overrun.
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Old August 25th, 2016, 02:26 PM
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Really?

I would think the Kafers would wipe the orbits clean of anything posing a threat or aiding in tactical intelligence while they had supremacy before setting a foot down on the planet.

Doesn't really change your story. The invasion can begin and your players can notice that the fleet is turning its eyes on the station, so that shuttle planet side is looking less risky which each passing hour. That way they can set down someplace that wasn't instantly overrun.
Kafer are dumb as a box of rocks until the adrenaline analogue is pumping. They simply don't think ahead well at all.
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Old August 25th, 2016, 03:05 PM
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Kafer starships are crewed by the much smarter Kafer that have survived long enough for their basic intelligence to be raised.
Quote:
PERMANENT KAFER
lNTEL LIGENCE
One of the most fascinating
aspects of Kafer dual
intelligence is the fact that
repeated stimulations result
in a permanent increase in
an individual Kafer’s intelligence.
Any one increase is
very small, but measurable.
In the course of many years,
Kafers who survive numerous
campaigns and face
death, danger, or pain frequently
can become as intelligent
as typical humans.
Much of the modern
course of Kafer exploration
and warfare has been set by
experienced Kafer veterans
who are intelligent enough to
plan long-term operations.
Kafer starship crews are
made up entirely of the
equivalent of human NCOs
and are veterans with 20 or
more years experience.
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Old September 12th, 2016, 05:44 AM
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Originally Posted by colinfit20 View Post
Was wondering if anyone had considered how a Traveller 2300 series could be handled?

Would you rather it be an animated series, an actual play podcast, you tube video of an actual game, a film or a live action series?

What kind of plot would you like to see handled in such a series?

Would you read a comic serial of such a series?

Maybe include some background detail in the back like the stats for crew, the ship or even the locations they visit?

What's your view on this?
All the formats you describe have their strengths and weaknesses and so I think the presentation would be different for all of them. The important point of introducing a new work to people is that it has to grab their attention and keep it. There's a cliche that if you can't suck someone in with the first sentence of a novel, you lose them completely.

There's also a cliche that everytime you use a mathematical formula, you lose half of your audience, so you want to make sure 2300 fails, you could have the first scene be Jerome's Law, a mathematical formula that made Stutterwarp possible.

For instance, if I were doing a film or a tv series, I'd definitely avoid an opening crawl: You simply can't describe the world of 2300 that easily simply because it is sort of "mundane" in some ways. I'd also avoid some sort of lame "location" computer screen overlay on the first scene like "COLONIE ZWEI" or something. It doesn't mean anything to the viewer who doesn't know a thing about 2300. Unlike podcasts or tabletop, you can also freely focus on a single character.

One of the strengths of 2300 is that it bears a lot of superficial similarities to our 20th/21st century. You can use this similarity to "fast forward" a viewer effortlessly. For instance, a young adult Caucasian male (or female) wakes up to a pretty familiar morning alarm (beep beep beep) in a very familiar bed, four walls in the room, half-seen posters of what could be movie posters on the wall, a shelf of books on the wall. Perhaps there's even an aquarium in the room. The blinds are drawn but it's still dark outside. The character turns on a TV and the host on the screen talks about "Welcome to the TANSTAAFL Farm Report, I'm Joe Stevens...in today's news..." or something - the viewer isn't going to know what TANSTAAFL is, it might be a company or something else - but we've already begun to deviate from the 21st century. While the host drones on the background with half-heard news items including "contact being lost with Station Arcture" the main character does a number of things that are still pretty familiar, like he washes his face, starts to brush his teeth. Then he goes over to his bedroom window and opens the blinds. Instead of a familiar starscape, we'd see the pale image of gas giant Tithonus filling up about half of the sky over false dawn landscape. It'd be a major "Toto, we're not in Kansas anymore" moment, but more importantly, the youth would not be surprised or amazed, immediately establishing that this alien sky is boring and routine to him. At that point, the news stream would establish the date: "... as it's differential storm caused by Tithonus' heating and not a solar storm, it is expected to be mild. That concludes the weather report for Monday, July 5, 2298."

A scene switch, outside, showing the youth, now dressed, and it becoming dawn, would show the teenager saying something like, "Yeah, I'll check Number Four before going to school. Tell grandpa he can stay in bed!" and he'd go out and check one of the robotic tractors out in the field, taking out a slender computer and tapping on the holographic screen. Only then would there be a loud "bang" in the sky as something flaming streaks across it at high speed. Then a distant (but huge) explosion. The youth would turn and start back towards the house, only for the tractor he was working on to suddenly explode, followed shortly afterwards by the hammering of some sort guns and some sort of aircraft (2300 geeks would instantly recognize it as a Hotel-class Kafer fighter). The air would be filled with re-entry pods, poofing out curiously familiar parachutes. None of them would land in the field, but one would land on the other side of the house. As the youth breaks into a run, we'd immediately start hearing the rapid-fire of some sort of military weapon, then screams. The youth would hesitate as a deathly silence falls once more. Then hesitatingly would walk into his house. We'd never see the Kafer. Instead we'd hear and half-glimpse all kinds of things as his world shatters - more explosions outside. Cows being gunned down by some unseen force. He'd see his grandfather dead in the kitchen. Then something would get knocked over in the house, he'd go to look and --

We could cut some to some present from this flashback. I think it'd be much more effective than a scroll or any kind of Dune-esque introduction which is only going to put viewers to sleep.
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