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Offbeat Traveller universe


Imagine a world, as much like our own as you can. In fact, call it our own, but set it in 2010.

Imagine a country, on the verge of economic collapse. Fighting in rural areas between insurgents and government forces is common. Black-market weapons and technology looted from the Red army. Nuclear weapons have been off the market...so far.

Imagine a regime, desperate to remain in power, begging the US for assistance in exchange for strategic influence. They need help to subdue rebel forces.

Imagine a team of covert operatives, easily denied, expertly trained. Their mission is to evaluate the threat of nuclear proliferation and secure the fragile government by any means necessary.

Imagine a truck containing a crate of well-used AK-47s. They look quite ordinary, except for the fact that they all have the same serial umbers. And the same scratches on the stock. And have exactly the same ballistic signatures.

Imagine a firefight, in a dark warehouse. The rebels escape, but not unscathed. The blood is almost human, but the hair is more canine.

Imagine a house, entered in the dark of night. You aren't alone, but you know it isn't the owner, nor his guards. Suddenly the lights come on, and there is werewolf staring you in the face. Wearing blue jeans and a leather jacket. Holding a rather nasty looking weapon made of glass and plastic. Pointed at your head.

Imagine he says "Hello"...
You got our attention. :cool:
That's essentially a narative of the first adventure for my new t20 campaign. I was a big fan of the old TSR game Top Secret, mostly because it was set halfway between our own world and the world of 007. I almost bought Spycraft, but I knew T20 would be coming out, and it could serve much the same purpose. This is a new twist on that old attraction - halfway between our world and the OTU. Think of it as X-Files meets Marc Miller.

The primary premise is that the planet we call Earth is a red-zone system in the Solomani Rim. I'm going to have to shift a couple of systems around in the Solomani Rim (and I'm still looking at exactly how to do it) but other than that I'm going to leave the Traveller canon intact.

How the players handle things from that point is entirely up to them. Choosing to trust the wolflike Vargr would bring them into the original CT Traveller universe. Choosing not to trust him would likely leave them on Earth, fighting a secret war against Solomani and private interests.

Regardless of how they choose, the PCs will begin the campaign early in careers, and then use the prior history rules for 'interludes' in the action. If they stay on Earth they'll be stuck with TL6-8 equipment, with perhaps a few alien artifacts thrown in for good measure. If they go off in Traveller it will become a quest to come home (sneaking into a heavily interdicted system). Is it a lost colony? Is it a world once seeded by Ancients? And once they learn WHY it is interdicted, it may become a desperate struggle to survive. For the whole race to survive.
That's good! :cool:

I hope you continue to develop this idea.

One question I have is how much of OTU will be used? (ie. Ancients, alien races, psionics, etc.)
I haven't found much yet that I have to change. I've decided that it is easier to move Earth (perhaps to replace Kaguk) than to redo the trade routes in Sol sector. At first I thought this meant I would have to come up with new astronomy for Earth, but what I decided is that the names we know are not the names used by the Solomani or the Third Imperium.

As I said, the timeframe will be Classic Traveller, with Earth Year 2002 coinciding approximately with Imperial Year 1102. My assertion is that a primitive Solomani race was discovered on our Earth during the Solomani Expansion (roughly Earth year 1500 BC), but was largely ignored due to a combination of three factors. First, the entire system seems devoid of certain key minerals necessary to develop and maintain Jump technology. Second, random instabilities in Earth's star posed a significant radiation hazard to ships traveling in the inner system (inside the asteroid belt). Third, the upper atmospheres of all of the system's gas giants contain impurities that make mis-jumps far more likely. These impurities have proven remarably insideous, being almost impossible to eliminate with conventional refining equipment. As a result, spacers shunned the system for centuries, calling it a deathtrap.

These factors combined to give the area Red Zone status under Imperial military control in 704, as part of the treaty that created the Solomani Autonomous Zone. A small outpost and fuel depot was established on Io in 945, and it remained the only safe source of fuel in the system until 991, when it was destroyed by Solomani forces. In 1072 (after the completion of the Second Survey) Imperial researchers determined that the Asteroid Belt was likely the result of Ancient activity, leading to speculation that the other quirks of the system may also be a result of Ancient influence. The outpost on Io was rebuilt 1084, this time as an unmanned fuel depot designated for Imperial military use only. A number of missions were planned to investigate the system further, but remoteness of the system and budgetary constraints caused a number of such planned missions to be postponed.

A retired Scout on detached duty finally resurveyed it for the ISS in 1102. The results are classified, but rumors of one or more Ancient sites on Earth itself have caused a flurry of activity within the Rim. A strong Imperial presence on Titan, Io, and within the asteroid belt has attempted to keep looters and profiteers at bay, but it is not known how effective such measures have been.

Other than this, the universe will remain canon.
Great concept!! Please keep us updated.

If you want to up the X-Files feel, throw some Call of Cthullu in there.

Start each character with a Sanity score.
Originally posted by Bluwolf

Great concept!! Please keep us updated.

If you want to up the X-Files feel, throw some Call of Cthullu in there.

Oddly enough, the first thing I thought of when I heard about T20 was planets full of Cthulhoid monsters and things that Humaniti was not meant to know...