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Verge Sector

Adam Dray

I'm thinking of starting a new campaign set in Verge Sector. I poked around the forum using the Search function and didn't find a lot. The wiki has scant data about the sector. It seems there was some play in Tripolis during the Rebellion, but not much more about it.

I saw hints that a lot of folks had done deeper development of the sector, but nothing turned up on a Google search.

Does anyone have (their own) Verge material they can share or point me to on the web? Was it developed in any published product I can pick up? Any help is appreciated.
Verge hasn't gotten official/published treatment anywhere beyond Atlas of the Imperium. Bit of a shame, it's a perfectly good sector. Good luck!
One thing to note about Verge on TravellerMap:

There is an unmarked J-5 route from the Imperium to the Aslan Hierate (starting in Subsector P of Verge and then making multiple J-5 forks thru Subsector O over to various destinations in the Hierate).
Yep! The secret J-6 comm route is thoroughly discussed in the Rebellion Sourcebook.

Verge has such potential! Right now, I'm planning to start play in Likagemika (Subsector K) in 1116 on the eve of the Rebellion. The subsector doesn't have an Imperial Fleet assigned but I assume it'd have light Naval presence -- mostly loyal to Dulinor. I've decided that as Dulinor's war heats up, he starts to pull his Fleets out of Verge and push them Trailing towards the front lines in Core and such.

That leaves a power vacuum waiting to be filled by opportunistic charismatic leaders, which Verge / Likagemika has a few of. Also, the subsector has a lot of HiPop systems that Dulinor has to sway to his cause.

I'm working through the 16 world write-ups, taking whatever I can find on TravellerMap and the TravellerWiki and adding my own flourishes. I'll share my work when it's done.
Verge also has that long chain of high jump-needed systems that connects, with J6, to the Aslan trans-Rift route.

I had planned to give Verge a Mongoose (1st ed) format treatment a few years ago, but never got there. Spent time in a K'kree prison instead.

We can develop *right here* if you like.

Historical overview, including Ancients Era, pre-Vilani (surprisingly, there is some of this), Vilani and the Trader States era, Consolidation Wars, Ziru Sirka, ROM, Long Night, and Third Imperium.
(Where did all that Rebellion era history come from in the sector's wiki entry?)

Political Overview (let's make up nobility, relations with nearby sectors and internal, etc)

Physical Overview (unusual features, including that big blank space)

Racial Makeup (anyone new, old, or interesting? Did the Sky Raiders pass through?)

Cultural Regions that may not rise to the level of the old MT map.

Subsector Survey. Each Subsector with UWPs, map, summary just like Supplement 3 did it, and three or four worlds given a paragraph or two.

Adventure Seeds
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First Impressions

No documented Minor Races. I suspect the T5 Homeworld check has not been done here.

Two Droyne/Chirper worlds, one of them out in the Rift. Only a few Main World Belts, too, suggesting that the Ancients were thin on the ground here.

Iedde, which holds nearly all of the sector's population, statistically speaking, definitely wants a world write-up. Unbreathable barely-air, waterworld, and home to 90 billion souls. Either there are a lot of undersea domes, surface-breaking arcologies, or floaters, or this world is home to sentient Grunion. Sentient TL13 Grunion...
The obvious historical elements:

Two known Ancients locations, one out in the Rift, with populations that survived the Final War. One as Droyne, the other as Chirpers.

Ilelish and Reft also show no nearby minor races. Ilelish is also under-served for developer attention, however, so that may mean nothing.

The Vilani Main just barely peeks into the coreward edge of the sector. Two smaller but still significant mains hop the border with Ilelish.

Pockets in subsectors C, G, H, and K were, according to the map in Vilani & Vargr, never part of the Ziru Sirka. This includes the one world (at 1718) that did have a minor race who are now extinct. Knowing those pesky and persistent Terrans, those worlds would have been brought into empire during the Rule of Man. That's not to say there weren't Vilani or Suerrat there already, as we know from other borders (cough, Gashikan, cough) that the Ziru Sirka had poor border control.

The map of Imperial wars in the MT Imperial Encyclopedia includes the Ilelish Tax Revolt in the 400s, which pointedly does NOT enter Verge. This suggests that Suerrat populations in Verge are, or were at the time, relatively minor.


So we have a bit of a historical mystery. The Vilani Consolidation Wars (-5400 to -4000, or so) had the stated goal of bringing all users of "illicitly transferred" Vilani jump drives under the Vilani thumb. They had a tendency to go only as far as they needed to in order to accomplish this goal. With no minor alien races and no other humans aside from the Suerrat in the sector, and with J2 needed to move around Verge freely in the first place, why is Verge even counted as part of the Ziru Sirka?
Without adding new aliens (which is still an option) the only answer is that either the Vilani or the Suerrat explored and exploited the region during the Trader States Era, making it already part of settled space and only barely involved in the Consolidation Wars.

This makes the sector an overwhelmingly Human one unless we add new aliens.
The combination of the coreward of the two Ilelish mains and the Vilani Main, a concentration of extreme high pop worlds in and near Ilelish A, and a generally lower population in Verge D suggests that Verge D (Nuzuu) is fertile tradewar territory between competing Vilani and Suerrat corporate interests. The High Pops in Nuzuu (all four of them) are likely starved for affordable resources, as their resource streams are all under external control and being siphoned off. The big world in Verge H is Tripolis, as Iedde's vast potential is locked up behind a lack of starport.

This all suggests some *nasty* power politics going on to keep Iedde out of play. Perhaps Tripolis is wary of helping Iedde gain access to subsector and sector markets at the risk of eclipsing its own influence, but the big neighbors in Ilelish definitely do NOT want Iedde to awaken.


A similar power game looks like it is under way along the other large main shared with Ilelish, connecting Verge L with Ilelish I, except the players here are likely flipped, with the Vilani and Dlani being primary and the Suerrat the minor power. Here the sleeping economic power in Verge is Tiawan, while the power brokers in Verge L are Phen, Jhundale, and Argaithe.


Tiawan and Amdarush are both candidates for native aliens, in my opinion.
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I just took a look at the Ziru Sirka map in V&V and wow, there are 16 worlds in subsector G, 14 worlds in subsector K, 5 in C, 3 in H, and 2 in L that were not part of Vilani territory. The cluster in G-H and the cluster in K-L seem too easy to reach (all via J-1 or J-2) to be excluded, so I'd assume someone there fought off Vilani expansion. New lifeform?

Or did Vilani expansion peter out in that direction right before reaching the Rift? That seems so unlikely, but it happened at Barnard's Star, right?
We can't blame it on the Aslan, since they weren't spacefaring at the time.

The Ziru Sirka border shows that same tendency along most of its length, which is why I attribute it to their extremely commercial nature. If a system isn't interesting enough to spend resources to settle, and didn't have any Jump Drive thieves in residence, they just didn't spend the effort or money to claim it. Based on the modern era's low populace in this region (C and G have 12 billion populace total between them), there was just never any population pressure to expand, and nothing rare enough to want to claim. The Third Imperium, and likely the ROM, did so out of completeness, because Terrans come to space exploration with a different mindset than the Vilani. Had the Suerrat Consolidation War come 200 years later, the Suerrat might have pushed all the way to the Rift, giving the Vilani reason to claim those systems.

The evidence we have points to Iedde being home to a minor race, as it would be an expensive colony to build, and Iedde has no port. Ninety billion people doesn't just happen unless they were already there. For the "sin" of buying tech from the Suerrat, they were incorporated into the Ziru Sirka, but they proved to be the last customer in that direction, so the Vilani stopped there.

The other potential narrative there is that, against reasonable expectations, Iedde was the world that "just happened" to be where all the local worlds fled to as the Long Night fell. Maybe it had a port at the time, and it sank, exploded, or was eaten by a hyperwhale. Or all three.
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Political Overview

The Imperial territory of Verge is administered as part of the Domain of Ilelish, though it is not within the traditional four sector boundary of that Domain. Given the Rift's effects on the Domain and the already high potential of Ilelish Sector, this additional territory does not make the Domain any more powerful than the others.

Each of the six Imperial subsectors has its own Duke, while Nuzuu also has a Short Duke in residence at Tlaq. There are also quite a few Counts, Viscounts, and Marquis' present. Once again, indicators that a lot of commerce is going on.

The Aslan worlds along the rimward edge are a mix of minor Clan holdings for the most part. Very little Tlaukhu presence here means local politics prevails among the Aslan, with two single world Clans and a slew of worlds held by an unknown number of more successful minor Clans with multi-system reach. This area is fairly close to both of the trans-Rift routes, and may benefit peripherally from that traffic, as well as having reasonably easy access to new territory for younger sons who don't mind traveling a bit.

The worlds out in the Rift are a mixture of Imperial dependencies and independent systems, including a world held by Droyne.
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You're much better at this than I am, but my experience with the OTU is fleeting. I'm getting everything I want out of this thread, beyond my wildest expectations. What do you need back from me other than, "This is awesome"?
I'm finding a lot of "Puzzle" worlds. How are those interpreted?

Also, I'm starting the campaign in Likagemika (K), which has a lot of Charismatic Dictators of varying kinds and a couple very low-pop worlds with lots of resources. For example, Jerat (Verge 2121) has 800 people and Resources A and an A starport.
This includes the one world (at 1718) that did have a minor race who are now extinct.

You mean the Kachiya. Their system is a M-class binary, standard/tainted atmosphere, medium-sized / 0.5g gravity, 50% water.

Knowing those pesky and persistent Terrans, those worlds would have been brought into empire during the Rule of Man. That's not to say there weren't Vilani or Suerrat there already, as we know from other borders (cough, Gashikan, cough) that the Ziru Sirka had poor border control.

I think there's interesting fodder there. Worlds with Vilani contact but not Vilani control, suddenly meeting Solomani oppressors. Maybe old deals and treaties nullified or forgotten. Bitterness about the Empire.

Just within Ilelish, you have two separate revolts and rebellions. Plus the Year 76 Pacification Campaigns.

It was 399 when Ilelish and the other HiPop worlds in the sector started negotiating with the Imperium for their own autonomous region, motivated by wanting control over interstellar trade "for greater profitability." I imagine that the HiPop systems in Verge joined in.

The 418 Ilelish Revolt ended in 435 with the Imperium sterilizing the capital planet's tropical zone from orbit and they forcibly moved the capital to Dlan. Bitterness about the Empire.

Dulinor's revolt wasn't a solo thing. He had backing of all of the Imperial Naval Intelligence organization within Ilelish. He presumably had the fleets in Ilelish and Verge? There had to be a pretty strong anti-Imperial sentiment in the sectors spinward of Core.

I'm saying, let's figure out that reason for all the unrest in Verge and amplify it a bit for the character of the setting. This is a sector that isn't that far from Core but has never really accepted rule.

Can we assume that some of those fringe systems had Solomani nobility who had found their place in Imperial government, but whose loyalties were tested during Dulinor's rule?

Oh, I just noticed that the "Ripples in the Imperium" map on page 14 of Mt Rebellion Sourcebook shows a lot of Rift-edge systems NOT part of the Third Imperium in 1116... That's MAJOR.

(Are we allowed to post book maps here?)

With no minor alien races and no other humans aside from the Suerrat in the sector, and with J2 needed to move around Verge freely in the first place, why is Verge even counted as part of the Ziru Sirka?

I'm guessing a lot of double-J1 jumps between the J2 gaps.

Do you have a timeline for when the Vilani and Solomani achieved J1, J2, J3, etc.?
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Re: The Suerrat, what year would you estimate that the Vilani contacted them at Ilelish?

They've probably had hundreds of years to spread off-system, right? The sterilization of their jungles on Ilelish probably caused a mass-emigration to other suitable systems nearby.

The wiki says:
By the time they first encountered the Vilani, they had founded a state of about two dozen worlds, knit together by vast generation ships. The two civilizations traded, and soon the Suerrat had a considerable empire comparable to that of their brethren.

That suggests pretty early contact and pretty widespread colonization by the Suerrat within Ilelish subsector and probably Shudash subsector, if they're chaining their colony-ship missions to nearby 1-parsec-distant stars.
I just realized that all the autocratic leaders are probably in systems that are in Stage 2: Autocrat Support of the "Zhunastu School of Contact" Rules of Contact -- that is, under Imperium influence but not yet member worlds.
"T4: Milieu 0" (p6) suggests that Scout Service explored the near-shore of the Great Rift quickly (by Year -10) and that the Imperium conservatively expanded by developing the systems. That could explain why the Rift-edge systems weren't part of the Imperium?

Oh, it also suggests the timing of Imperium expansion spinward:

By Year 20, the Imperium seems destined to encompass about half of Dagudashaag, Ilelish, Massilia, Fornast, and Antares, as well as a wide corridor to Vland though Lishun. But in every one of these areas, the Imperium is now meeting increasing resistance from local worlds and pocket empires, and is having to constantly bypass worlds and clusters in order to keep up momentum. In time, the islands of independence from the Imperium which are now being created will have to be dealt with.

So after the Long Night, in Year 20, the Scout Service skimmed past the worlds on the edge of the Great Rift, where the Imperium was slowly pushing spinward, except for the spinward line to Vland.
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Ah, mystery solved. In Vilani and Vargr (p10):

The lower technology of those times also caused quite a few world with less hospitable environments to be bypassed. Star systems more than jump-1 or jump-2 from any other star systems were more isolated than they are today. This became especially noticeable as the frontier borders of the empire reached regions with a more sparse system density, such as along the rifts (see map).

So jump distance and system density contributed to the Rift-edge systems being less efficient for Vilani exploration.