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My latest adventure game


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I’m not going to detail how the adventure went here, because it’s obviously going to be different for anyone else using this. But, I thought I’d outline the scenario. It really threw the players as they weren’t used to a situation where they might have to be at odds with other players. I thought it was good to make them uncomfortable with the scenario. It made things far more edgy.

The players chose and made characters for the adventure, and that set my choices in large part for what they’d be given to do. They were given the maximum latitude to pick their characters. That way they couldn’t complain.
Digressing for a moment, the way I’ve decided to do character generation is generate several hundred sets of basic stats and allow the players to pick theirs from the list. The rest of the generation process is pretty much per the rules, except they are allowed to pick their skills from the tables in the rules rather than roll for them. All this means there is no complaining about their character, as they chose their “poison,” so-to-speak.

The characters they chose, in coarse description, were:

A female Imperial Secret Service operative (rolled as a Scout) with three terms. She is still in the service.

A male Imperial Navy Commander with four terms who had retired / mustered out and is now looking to make his fortune outside the service.
An Imperial Army enlisted man with two terms.

A Darrian female merchant captain with five terms who is operating a small trade ship.

And, last a two-term male Vargr merchant crewman who was primarily a steward.

I assigned NPC’s to some of the characters to go with their starting situation. These were given to each player such that the others didn’t know what the others were given.

The ISS agent got a male who was a bit less experienced than her as an assistant. They were told the two were looking for a person, gender unidentified, carrying Imperial secrets, etc., to move them out of Imperial space. They were working on direct orders from Duke Dulinor to find and stop this person at any cost.
As they arrived on an Imperial warship (about 1 to 4,000 tons) that's in orbit of the planet, they're on everybody's "radar" at the moment. They're sort of like The Avengers TV spies from the 60's.

The navy commander was given information that there was a trinary system nearby where the extremely rare, super-heavy, stable island, element Organissium was found. As little as a gram of this stuff is worth a million credits. His source was a secret report he saw while in the service, so it’s likely nobody knows about this yet. All he needs is a means to get near or to this system…

The Imperial Army guy is now the bodyguard for an extremely wealthy businessman travelling to a destination outside the Imperium named Mister Nan. He’s being paid well for his services.

The merchant Captain has just arrived in the First Star Zarushagar Sector, Mizar subsector 0248. Most of her crew quits due to her attitude and lack of confidence. Her First Officer remains but she needs a medic, steward, and engineer in order to operate where the Imperials at any decent A or B starport won’t suspend her license until she has sufficient crew aboard.

Mr. Nan approaches her and offers to pay her a million credits for transport to Caledon, in the Principality of Caledon, (Reaver’s Deep 1815), and another million if she completes the contract. He has 250 thousand in a briefcase as earnest money. All she needs is a minimal crew.

The Vargr steward starts with his trusted sidekick, another Vargr who looks to him as the alpha male. This NPC is more of an engineering and technical type. They just got fired from their last ship mostly because they’re Vargr and due to passenger complaints. They’re short on funds, and prospects for employment.

They are in a bar where they meet a grizzled old miner calling himself “Taz.” Taz is pretty drunk and shows them a smooth black stone that fits in the palm of his hand. He tells them a story of how he found it, and how there’s so much more there. Several other patrons tell him, “Shut the hell up old man! We’re tired of hearing your crazy stories.”

He lets the Vargr PC hold the stone. Upon touching it, the PC finds himself standing in a field on a planet, somewhere. There are three suns in the sky and a very bright, star next to them. He can see, smell, hear, what’s happing there but cannot move.

Taz tells him, “There’s a whole lot of Ancient stuff on that there world, just waitin’ fer the takin’. It’s all true. We could all be rich if we kin just get there. Are ya willin’ ta do that?”

The world they are all on is Forepaugh in the First Star system. (Zarushagar sector, Mizar subsector, 0248). It’s a tidally locked planet ruled by an Imperial Knight who has several “sheriffs” who are the law and power. The planet has a habitable zone alone the edge between “day” and “night” sides of the planet.

Referee's notes. Look only if you want to use the scenario. Someone who might play this should ignore these notes.

Referee’s notes:
Mr. Nan is the guy with the Imperial secrets who’s smuggling them out. The secrets are such that they implicate many very important Imperial nobles in all sorts of nefarious plots and such and are worth a fortune as blackmail, or to anyone possessing them as a means of leveraging influence in return for giving them up... if the possessor is careful.

The merchant Captain needs a minimum crew including a medic, steward, and engineer she doesn’t have to leave the system. There’s a small Imperial warship (your choice of type) in orbit that will enforce that.

The ship has J2 M1 capability and sufficient cargo space to allow for temporary fuel tanks to be installed giving the ship up to 3 jump capacity if the Captain wants to purchase the temporary tanks for that.

The ISS agent and her helper need to have proof before they can act against Nan in any way. Right now, they don’t know he’s who they are looking for.
The system the navy commander and Vargr steward are looking for is Mooney, Reaver’s Deep subsector, 1206

The stone the steward held is Ancient technology and there is more on the world it came from. That might be the world Iron Angel Reaver's Deep 2110... (but it's actually Mooney 1206) This is the same system the naval commander is interested in...

Yes, there is going to be conflict between the players and this is not a uniform party game. As referee you should make a note of this to the players as most are used to the D & D sort of party where its everybody against NPC monsters. Here it’s PC versus PC and PK’ing is part of the scenario. That’s more real life, rather than game.
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It really threw the players as they weren’t used to a situation where they might have to be at odds with other players.

(grin) outstanding. takes some good players to make that work.
And, it just kept getting worse. They run into lots of Aslan and with the Vargr, it's cats and dogs... :D
If you can do them in a single session, these types of scenarios are great for pick up games at conventions.

I did one once where one of the players we effectively a confederate, and "working for the other side", and against the party. But since all of that information was conveyed out of band (away from the table, and before the event), it came as quite the surprise to the rest of the party when he betrayed them.

Players are always suspicious of folks getting notes or in private conferences with the Ref.
This one was done on-line so I had the advantage of PM'ing the various players stuff the others wouldn't know about. Interestingly, the party tried and then succeeded in uniting by offing the NPC Mr. Nan. They then chose to pursue the options given on mining Organissium or finding Ancient technology, neither of which was successful and they went broke...