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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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Old February 7th, 2009, 02:00 PM
Chaos Chaos is offline
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Default The Terran Alliance

So I´ve cooked up my own ATU, and I´m taking this opportunity to show it off - and of course I would appreciate any comments.

The working title for the ATU is "Terran Alliance universe", because the Terran Alliance is the big 1,000 dton gorilla in that particular monkey house.

The TA universe approximately half the physical size of the OTU, but is very sparsely populated with planetary systems; as a rule of thumb, expect about 200 stars with planetary systems per sector. About 1 in 4-5 of these will have at least one habitable world, and 1 in 3 of those have more than one (the current record for a randomly rolled system is 5 habitable worlds).
The time is about 1,000 years after humans discovered jump drive; they have spread out and colonized most suitable world, and encountered three spacefaring and around 20 non-spacefaring alien civilizations.

Currently roughly 1/3 of all colonized worlds are united (to use the term loosely) by the Terran Alliance, which consists of a number of larger and smaller member states (essentially pocket empires of up to a few dozen systems each) and plenty of single systems that never were organized above the system level. The TA consists of most of the oldest, most highly developed and densely populated systems, and thus probably has more industrial capacity, military power and population then all the rest taken together.
I´ve chosen an ostensibly representative government as a "replacement" for the Imperium because I think a more loosely organized, bureaucratic instead of feudal state makes more sense, especially in a universe with no Ziru Sirka around that could give those Terrans ideas. The TA has elements of the Third Imperium, as well as the real-world Holy Roman Empire, European Union and United Nations, plus the Old Republic of Star Wars.
There are also quite a few smaller nations who are no part of the TA; most are typical pocket empires, but one, the Realm of Midgard, while of course not as strong as the TA, is certainly strong enough to worry them, and perhaps too strong to defeat without stripping their defense everywhere bare - Midgard has so far had three major wars with the TA in the last couple of centuries, and they´re still there. Midgard got quite a few of the xenophobic and supremacist elements of the OTU Solomani, except their culture and mindset is derived more for Victorian age Europe - complete with the delusion that they are the rightful masters of mankind.

The three spacefaring cultures derived (sometimes loosely) from the Vegans, the Aslan and the Droyne.
My "Vegans", the Duanai, are amphibious Cephalopods, who have adapted to the overwhelming presence of humans around them and are now securely a part of the TA - that is, perhaps, until they see a chance to leave...
My "Aslan", the Leonidae, are fairly close to the original, and their Khanates (which are probably more like the Vargr Extent than the Aslan Hierate) are the other big external challenge to the TA, besides Midgard.
My "Droyne" are the Oni, an insectoid species present on several dozen worlds within the human area of influence, yet without any overall organization, and without any indication that they are native to any of these worlds. "Oni" is Japanese and means "demon", more or less, and the human named them for their looks - they´re deep inside "I get a feeling we´re no longer in Kansas" territory, even compared to the rest of the aliens.
There are various minor alien civilizations as well, which I have not yet all fleshed out; so far the Ursa and Vargr are in, under different names, with the Vargr also being uplifted by human scientists; the Ursa have changed only in that they are now uplifted polar bears, in part because I have watched The Golden Compass a few times too often. A third originally minor civilization, derived from the Ithklur, is now also fairly ubiquitous - the Ceti (their homeworld is Tau Ceti IV, which gave them their shorthand name).

The area in which I´m planning for adventuring to place primarily is the "Crescent", a (vaguely) crescent-shaped (duh!) area that was relatively recently annexed by the TA; it consists mostly of fairly newly colonized worlds, not all of which are completely explored (and thus could have a surprise or three in store), bordered on one side by the main TA territory, on the second side by client states of the Realm of Midgard (except tensions here, especially since relation with Midgard are chilling once again), on the third by two theocracies engaged in more or less perpetual Holy War, and on the fourth side, opposite the TA, by the Gap. That Gap is a rift too far to cross with TA jump technology, so anything beyond that is unexplored; however rumors abound all over the Crescent that somebody lives over there, and they know how to cross the Gap - in other words, expect the occasional UFO encounter.

So, what do you think?
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Old February 8th, 2009, 01:48 AM
sabredog sabredog is offline
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I like it – I had to come up with my universe from scratch when the game first came out. None of my friends knew what to think, we (along with everyone else) were still trying to see what we could make of D&D, but we were more rabid Sci-Fi fans than fantasy.

Since I was influenced by Pournelle, Niven, Campbell, Haldeman, Heinlein, Burroughs, A.E. Smith, Vance, and others of similar ilk my TU developed along some pretty eclectic lines involving space opera, enough hard sci-fi to make it consistent and a lot of Cold War fears. So a very basic description would be:

So I developed the Terran Confederation which was modeled somewhat along the lines of Pournelle’s Co-Dominium, but only after a land rush spawned by jump drive development scattered all sorts of Earth nationalities, cultures, and other groups out among the stars. The Confederation brought them together using a Senate…each world got a senator per X number of population, plus an extra one if the represented colony was a cluster instead of an individual world. The Soviets headed out farther and faster than the rest in the hope of annexing deeper colonies to contain everyone else’s expansion – so there’s a lot of people running around out on the edges with Russian names and traditions.

The Friedlanders (Friedland Coalition) were a group of South Afrikaners who started a new trek (in an attempt to get back to their original religious and farming roots and away from apartheid and oppression) and lucked on the largest deposits of lanthanides and other rare earths in the Confederation, so they ended up gradually developing more and more political power and wealth.

The opposing Empire of equal tech level, but along different lines of advancement, is the Askorrian Empire. Reptile-like mammals, they are aggressive in expansion and loosely modeled along the lines of Anderson’s Mersians in that they are organized like the Sassinid Persian Empire. Vassal races have some autonomy within the Empire, but it is still subjugation the Confederation doesn’t want.

I developed the Prox, a major hyena like race with semi-intelligent females and real desire to expand their territory. They have a slight racial inferiority complex because the Terran Confederation has absorbed them into it, and won’t share its highest tech with them. Some of the Prox broke away and raid the edges of the colonies now.

Between the two major powers was a strip of subsectors that was a sort of no-man’s land of colonies with varied allegiance to either side. That’s where most of the play took place. Battleships dodging and prowling around, pirates, spies, merchant adventurers, and a constant growing tension of a coming war.

The war finally happened and the Confederation collapsed and was rebuilt as the Empire of Man, under the leadership of the Friedland Coalition. The Askorrians had their nose bloodied enough to back off and lick their wounds. The Prox took the chance to try to flood into the vacuum in the middle and now it’s more like the Wild West among the non-aligned colonies. Tech levels plunged and smuggling is huge business. Mega-Corps are trying to take control of whole worlds and small pocket empires are spawning from mutual protection pacts.

For 30 years now the whole thing’s taken on a life of its own and I have never had any desire to use the OTU. I still just use Books 1-7, Trillion Credit Squadron, and Striker. I make my own aliens – as the official ones came out I never really liked them, the whole uplifted animal thing bugged me, samurai lions and talking starfish – no thanks.

Kudos to you for breaking out on your own – it’s a huge job, but some ref’s just gotta do it!
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