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Last Updated: 7 months ago
Play Status: Completed
Gah! Spoilers! xD
Don’t worry, we are still moving ahead. Eric wants to bring Richard back to the game instead of Sin-Sasha and so we’ve spent a while negotiating under what terms he comes back. Dominic is all set up now as a new player and should be joining us for Sunday. Hopefully we also have a fourth player in the form of Russ, but we need to generate his character.
So we’re getting there slowly, but probably won’t do much on the boards before Sunday so we can make introductions and reintroductions there.
hi guys! Just checking in to see what’s going on? The board’s been quiet…
You know me, Nick. I’m in.
OK, looks like we have found the ‘new and enthusiastic player’ that we need in the form of Dominic who has rolled up his character and is keen to get started.
So I am ready to start up again with the first live session the Sunday after next (4 December). We will do some stuff on the boards before then in order to get the party reassembled.
Please can everyone let me know who is in and who is out from this point onwards so that we can move forward just with those people who are keen on being part of the game and make replacements for those who would prefer to drop out?
Just to clarify Ian’s last comment for the silent masses, we’ve put the game on hiatus for a shot while while we go about picking up some new players. We cant have very exciting sessions with just two players and a GM. We’ll be back in action as soon as we can pick up at least one new and enthusiastic player. Be sure to drop Nick a line if you are interested, the invitation is open.
Also (and I know I’ve already pestered you guys about this in emails), how do you guys feel about dolling up our campaign a bit? Seems all the other popular OBS campaigns are smothered in graphics.
Well Gents, from Ruie to the GASH to Piracy to kidnapping MOJ Agents, it has truly been a blast! I don’t know if the game will be revived or not, but, as always, I’m ready to restart Devlin if it does!
In the event that it doesn’t resume, I just wanted to say thank you for a great time, particularly to Eric, John, Duncan, and Clive (wherever you are): you guys were great to play with and I look forward to meeting you in another game, another time.
To Nick, my most heartfelt thanks for creating such a vivid Traveller world and for allowing me to enjoy it with you. Your hard work prepping every week was only exceeded by the sense of humor you brought to SCW and our Monday debriefings. Thank you for one of the most fun roleplaying experiences I’ve ever had.
Ian (aka Devlin Stanley Michael, Temporary Acting Interim Brevet Commodore (ret.), aka “Jester”)
Hi Stephen, I am glad that you are finding some of the materials useful.
I put the missing images back in now. Obsidian gives very little free storage place on the free version so I deleted some of the older images to free up space for some new stuff. I upgraded to the paid version after a while and so I now have plenty of storage, so I have put them back in for you.
If there’s anything else you find that’s still missing, please let me know and I will upload them again.
Very nice resource which I will use with my Star Trek campaign
Anytime I find good planetary info, technology info, and starship info that I can modify for use in my campaign I am overjoyed.
I found a few busted links in the wiki and wanted to point them out in case you were unaware.
Dead Image 2
I tell ya, this site makes me miss my days playing traveller and that was over 20 years ago.
Hi Stephen, many thanks for the kind words. It’s most appreciative. I hope that you can find plenty of stuff here to use in your own games. If you have any more comments or questions, I’d love to hear from you. Bye, Nick
I just discovered you page and the logs are quite enjoyable. I shall be reading them over the next few days, maybe longer and see what gems I can find. The site overall looks very information intensive which for me is a very good thing. Wish you guys the best with your game, have fun
Theoretically, Cinnavane politics doesn’t look that different from how it is in the UK.
The Rijkskamer is very similar to the House of Lords in that it is comprised of the local nobles, senior university officials and bishops from the Church of Wisdom. The house hardly ever meets and is more a ceremonial position than having any real power. They know that it would not be in their advantage to try and upset the status quo.
The Burgerhof is similar to the House of Commons in that it comprises all of the Guildmasters and Aldermen voted for by the people of each of the various areas of Cinnavane. Although it has more influence than the Rijkskamer, this is still not where the decisions are made.
The Directorate is similar to the Cabinet. Its membership consists of the Archbishop of the Church of Wisdom, the Dean of the University and the heads of the ten biggest Merchant Houses. They are the ones who make the major decisions, getting the Burgerhof and Rijkskamer to rubber stamp all of their policies in return for favours and money. Each year, one of the Directorate is chosen as the Staadtholder who is theoretically the one making all the decisions, but again it is mostly a ceremonial role.
Each ward of the city also has its own local government with limited powers.
Below the government is a massive bureaucracy that collects the taxes and supposedly spends it for the city’s good.
Bearing this information in mind, you would imagine that the main use of the semaphore network is for the Merchant Houses to communicate with their branches in other cities. This allows them to keep their privileged positions as they are always the first to hear of any news that would affect the markets.
The Black Caps are the local police force who keep law and order inside the city. There is not a standing army as such as there are really no major enemies to fight as the continent is no longer balkanized. The city would have the availability to raise a large militia though if there was any great need to do so in the future.
With the revelation that the semaphore network is just for ‘Government Use’, I have to ask: Who are the govenment?
We’ve heard of Trade Guilds and Merchant houses, seen gate guards and (fairly useless) road-wardens, but who’s running the show? If the govenment’s keeping the only decent communications network to themselves, what do they do with it? Have they got a standing army? What’s their power-base? How do they enforce their will and collect taxes?
Just world-building curiosity, probably not relevant, but enquiring minds…
Most transport on Main is made by water. Because of the continent’s long, slim shape, most of the main cities are on the coast. There are two ship canals so that ships don’t need to make the long and dangerous voyages around the north and south Capes (which are icebound during the winter months in any case). One ship canal is just north of Cronin, while the other is 1200km north of Cinnavane where there is a natural isthmus. There is a good network of canals which link the major rivers together to get to the towns which are not on the coast.
Being an agrarian economy, most cities are able to get their food from the outlying towns and villages surrounding them. So there is no great need to transport food great distances.
There is a semaphore network linking the major cities, with dispatch riders passing on news to the towns not on the network (like a primitive version of the xboat network).
There would definitely be a lucrative market for some smuggled hi-tech goods. The penalties though are very severe for anyone caught with them though, usually death. There are definitely plenty of hypocrites around though (see most Muslims for details!)
Steam is most definitely out. As for other borderline examples, this will depend upon the interpretation of the religious zealot who discovers it at the time.
As regards the beverages, yes – that one’s a priority!
We already know they’ve outlawed steam engines – and there are probably a few heretics with electricity from generators or crude batteries, but they’ll be rare and covert.
They might have coal and/or oil – but mining will be limited in depth without steam-driven pumps.
One thing they could produce easily and cheaply is Biogas (Ewww!) – Looking at what’s been done in Nepal & Afghanistan, it’s a simple, basic setup of a big underground ‘digester’, you feed it cr*p and it produces methane for cooking & lighting. One thing an agricultural planet with eighty million people is never going to be short of is sh*t!
Seriously, though, Parkway brings up an excellent point. Clockwork mechanisms just store energy, they don’t produce it, so “steampunk” tech (as far as the GM allows it to exist) of the mechanically wound variety should be alright. So, given that electricty could be produced through such means (springs+gearing+magnets+wire, etc), they could have limited stored power sources (clockwork batteries)? Not to mention the treadmills and bicycle generators brought up by Parkway for real-time power generation.
And, what about the “steam” in steampunk? If you can use fire to heat a boiler to make hooch, why can’t you hook the boiler up to gearing (hand made of course) for motive power or electricity? Oh well, whoever said religions had to be internally consistent? Hell, maybe they’ve banned “distilled” and only allow “natural, fermented” beverages!
GM? We know you want to answer these questions ;-)
Well, in real life, our own Luddites, the Amish of Pennsylvania (etc.), while not using anything other than “wind, water, work” themselves, do make exceptions. For instance, in certain conditions it is allowed for the Amish to ride in cars, they just can’t drive them! That’s left to the “unclean” caste of modern americans. On Knorbes of course, it’s a different matter. There must be a few hypocrites out there in the countryside, though! No organization has monolithic control and already we’ve seen a “resistance” movement of sorts regarding the muties. It makes Dev wonder if there’s a dangerous but lucrative black market for smuggled HiTech in the hinterlands. Duncan and I will have to investigate :-)
(“Bring out your dead! Bring out your dead!”…“I’m not quite dead, yet!”…“Well then. good Sir, perhaps I could interest you in this highly illegal yet surprisingly effective Doxycycline?”)
I’ve been looking at the description for Knorbes, and wondering: What tech could they have, with their base tech level and religious restrictions?
They’ve got access to as much theoretical knowledge as they’re prepared to pay for – what they don’t have is the infrastructure needed for most ‘technological’ improvements.
So: Whimsical but interesting things, like gliders would be possible. Lenses and optics would have to be individually ground, but telescopes, microscopes, binoculars would be possible.
It’s an agricultural world – so the production, transport and storage of food is likely to be the basis of its wealth. We’ve seen the basic state of the roads, all the serious transport must be by canal, right? – That’s a slow way to move things, so what about refrigeration? The principal is simple enough, the part they don’t have is an electric motor…Maybe small wind-powered units on the barges, and on warehouses, etc? Treadmills for backup power?
With refrigeration comes the possibility of vaccination, as well as better food storage. You can’t run much of an empire if ten percent of your population keep dying in plagues, etc…
Yeah, I know what you mean. I wish Dev had the gift of gab.
(OOC~ my wife is telling me to shut up now ;-)
Honestly – if I had to write for a living, I’d starve to death! The amount of time it takes me to get a few dozen words in order is just terrible…
Well then, unless Dev used Medic/0 today when I was gone (and if it’s ok with Nick) I’ll switch to ~ Drive/0 from Medic/0
So final for Dev is
Drive/0 Comp/0 Air/Raft/0
Dianne, you’re it if Splinter goes down ;-)
Personal choice Dev choose what fits))
Drive/0 is probably better for the party for Dev to take too, maybe instead of Medic/0? We already have Dianne taking Medic/0 and Splinter’s skill goes without saying ;-) So if Dev switches his Medic/0 to Drive/0 we’ll have 2 drivers? What do you guys think? It would make just as much sense in respect to his backround as Medic would and he hasn’t used any default skills in game other than Air/Raft yet.
ok added that instead
Yes, just a standard car like we’’re all driving around in during the 21st Century.
You don’t want Ground Vehicle? They are probably still the most common form of transport in much, if not most, of the Spinward Marches and no one has this skill yet.
Its not a skill I particularly want but the truth is I have most of the skills I’m entitled too on the tables I can use, at L0 or higher.
I think Medic and Carousing are the only other ones I can choose from (Liason 1 gives me Streetwise and Admin 0), so I suppose it will be Medic.
I am glad that we were able to get to a solution on the J-o-T problem finally.
I am happy with everyone’s choices of level-0 skills with the exception of Duncan’s Ship’s Boat. This would be a highly complex skill and so I don’t think should be covered according to the original rules for J-o-T.
I would suggest that you either choose another or else I’ll be making Duncan roll each time he uses it to see if he breaks it or not!
That is a pretty elegant solution for CT: 3 x L0 skills per JOT level rolled.
If so then second 3 are:
Survival 0 (from Nasemin list, a place of scary tidal effects and electric storms)
Zero G 0 (from Shipboard Life Table)
Ships Boat 0 (from Officer Table)
3rd one meant to say Air Raft/0.
For the three homeworld skills I’d say Watercraft: Small Boats-0 (his family run a small tug business, and home is a waterworld), ATV -0, (has used it, and submersible ATVs used in shallows at home) and ATV -0 (again has used in game I think, and used as standard on TL9+).
With JOT 2 are you saying I can pick another 3 L0s? And I need to pick them from the Steward/Physical Development/Shipboard/ Merchant life tables only- or home skills? Am I interpreting this right?
For the 2 JOT substiute skills
Streetwise-0, Medic-0, ATV-0 I guess.
OK, I am quite happy with this as long as Dianne is as well.
So for each level of J-o-T a character has, the character can pick three skills. All skills should be possible for the character to have rolled during their previous career, or else would be commons skills for anyone on their home world.
So please can everyone give me their definitive lists now?
Personally, I favor (rerolling/picking/having GM choose) a skill and ditching JoT. I’d also be in favor of Duncan’s modified MGT backround skills~ everybody gets to pick 3 level/0’s to represent mundane backround activities.
At a glance, off Duncan’s list for Dev, I could see taking Medic/0 (from being active in combat in his history), Air/Raft/0 (from working around spaceports where they are common), and Computer/0 (spacer/high tech homeworld). Also, Dev did use his Air/Raft default once “in-game” already, so that wouldn’t break with consistency…
Let’s put it to the vote then. All three of you with J-o-T (Dev, Duncan and Dianne) – just let me know which of the various solutions we have discussed you would like to go with.
I just want to get this resolved once and for all so that we can move on.
For many things yes. But I think their solution to JOT isn’t satisfactory as it makes the character potentially capable of EVERYTHING: they would have been better just ditching the skill.
There are a lot more skills in mongoose eg. Science (any branch you can possibly think of), or Artist (anything from Bass Guitar to Origami).
I think both your solution and the ‘ditch and run’ solution are fine: I would vote for either of the alternatives; I think Parkway favours the ‘roll again and ditch JOT’ option (?). See what Dev thinks and then just decide by DM fiat.
Mongoose Traveller is way, way better than Classic Traveller (they did have 30 years of being able to learn from GDW’s mistakes to get it right).
If I ever did another game, then I would use MongTrav just because they have figured out the solutions to problems like this J-o-T one.
It seems to me there are 2 options. Nick the problem with JOT is mainly one with players rather than GMs, who want to know they haven’t just got a wasted skill (or two). I suppose GDW should never have done it in the first place.
It seems to me there are 2 options in actually giving the skill some definition:
(1) Nick/ JTAS option refined a bit: Give players with JOT 1 a choice of some (3?) homeworld skills form their planet. I have done a table below from the PC s planets (Richard a bit of a problem but he doesn’t have JOT). Also give players with JOT 1 some relevant L0 cascade skills derived from any L2 or higher skills.
Give JOT 2 PCS as above, but the skills derived from L2 or higher can be at L1. You can extend this principal to higher levels of JOT.
The potential problem deriving from existing players having ATV/Air Raft/Medic 0 is sidestepped by saying that those players who have already used these (eg Duncan using ATV) have chosen this as one of their 3 L0 homeworld skills.
(2)Scrap JOT entirely. Instead give everyone 3 L0 homeworld skills. Players who roll JOT can instead gain some greater degree of selectivity in getting a substitute. Either by picking any single skill on offer in their profession (eg navy could choose any Navy skill) or by allowing them to roll on any table (eg a navy Gunner could roll on navy Flight table instead)-DM refines the alternative as he sees fit.
Homeworld UPP Character Notes Skills (pick 3)
Boughene A8B3531-D Redd All of Boughene’s population lives on a space station in orbit around it; none actually live on the surface, although a few work there extracting valuable chemical compounds from primitive exotic lifeforms. The station used to belong to General Products LIC, but in 822 a cabal of local company executives engineered the sale of the station to themselves and applied to the Imperium for membership. GP eventually accepted the new situation and still has its corporate headquarters here, taking up a significant portion of the highport. Boughene is a nexus for the X-boat network in the subsector. Air Raft 0
Vacc Suit 0
Zero G 0
Ships Boat 0
Nasemin B98A422-B Duncan A non-industrial water world located within the Towers Cluster in theAramis Subsector of the Spinward Marches. A large, close moon, a high axial tilt, and an energetic sun combine to produce giant tides and extreme weather effects.
The most prominent creature living in Nasemin’s stormy seas is theByssal, a very large and nasty predator that is the source of an anti-inflammation drug which has so far defied economical synthesis. Nasemin’s population is primarily occupied with chasing down byssals and excising the gland in which the drug is concentrated. The byssal hunters operate in small crews aboard specially constructed submersibles. Much skill is involved in searching for the predator in the ocean depths; the actual capture process is short but dangerous. Nasemin is a member of the Imperium and the system contains a small Scout Base.
Air Raft 0
Small Boats 0
Regina A78889-C Dev, Splinter The Regina system is actually a triple star system – the primary Lusor and its dwarf companion Speck form the major system, while dim Darida orbits at about 5,000 AU distance. Regina is only one of seven worlds in the systems which boast a breathable atmosphere, and only one of four habitable planets in the life zone of Lusor, in orbit around the gas giant Assiniboia. With the best conditions of the group, it was settled first and soon dominated the system. The Darida system proved much less hospitable, and has been only minimally exploited. It does boast a military outpost, and a few small settlements devoted to prospecting and mining available ores. There are three stars, eight planets and 17 satellites in the system. Regina boasts the highest population; its companion satellites of Brumaire and Harcourt (along with a few other lesser worlds) have been colonized. A few scientific and technical survey stations and a small military base maintained by the Imperial Navy occupy the relatively desolate Darida system. Many planets orbiting Lusor (the primary star) and its dwarf companion Speck are named for persons or places associated with St. Regina. Worlds orbiting Darida (Lusor’s far companion) are named in the Vilani language after famous Vilani authors."
Air Raft 0
Vacc Suit 0
Feri B384879-B Sarge A rich world located in the Regina Subsector of the Spinward Marches.Feri is a member of the Imperium and the system contains a Scout Base. In addition to Feri Startown, other major settlements on Feri include Falstaff, Muzila, Khur City, and Imim.
Feri has been embroiled in a world-wide war since 1105. According to the official story some of the nations want Feri to leave the Imperium and are fighting the nations that want to stay, but there must be more to the story than that, because the Imperium has only lent the friendly nations a few paltry army divisions, and the war itself remains unresolved after more than a decade and shows no sign of being resolved any time soon. If anything, the Imperium-friendly nations seem to be losing. The whole planet is a battleground, with areas of low-intensity guerrilla conflict and occasional hotspots of open warfare. It’s a mystery why the Travellers’ Aid Society has not awarded Feri Amber Zone status long ago. It is expected to do so any day now.
Air Raft 0
Ian ??-A Richard From Richards Character Sheet only… Air Raft 0
Well, again I want to apologize for confusing the two rule sets! I really thought they were more closely parallel than they actually are. As for Dunc’s post, I rather like the Mongoose “backround” skill/0s, if only because it fits with my conception that backrounds grant a certain “communal” skill set to the average citizen. In fact, one of the reasons that I like that system is precisely because we wouldn’t need to ask who could go with SCW, we’d only need to know who wanted to go with him. Really though, I’m good with whatever the ultimate decision is!
In the meantime, I’m rereading CT1-3, downloading CT4 and CT5, and shelving MGT to avoid confusing myself again…:-)
I don’t really know where to go now with the J-o-T question any more. The whole debate seems to be out of proportion with how much it actually matters.
If I was a rules-nazi who was constantly asking you to roll for the most mundane of tasks, then it would matter.
If someone had ended up dead or the party had lost vast quantities of money as a result of someone having or not having certain skills, then it would matter.
But it’s only really come into effect for mundane matters for stuff where none of the party members are experts. Does it really matter who drives the ATV to the shops and back because Sinclair wants a Mars Bar? Not really. My primary goal is that every member of the party has a useful role to play so that you don’t get one character who is doing everything while another has to sit around because they never have any specialist skills in anything useful.
With regards to the JTAS article on High Justice referring to Admin skill, this is because the article is very old and pre-dated the release of Book 7 where Legal was first introduced as a skill.
I would also say that the Mongoose traveller JOT is even more broken. With JOT 3 (not actually that difficult in some professions) you can be L0 at EVERYTHING, plus your DMS for attributes (Nuclear Physicist, Shopkeeper, Mole driver, Deep Sea Diver, Brain Surgeon etc etc)
I think JOT one can be interpreted fairly easily under Nicks/JTAS suggestion.
So as regards JOT 1 eg.
Duncan comes from a TL B World-Nasemin, a waterworld in fact.Common skills for him might be Air Raft, ATV and Small Boats.
If he only had JOT1 the ref might decide he had some other skills as L0 defaults if needed, but they would have to relate to his existing skills (say Elec 0 for example).
Dianne , I think has Engineering 2 and JOT 1. I don’t know her homeworld but lets say its Bowman-an asteroid belt. Common skills for her might be Vacc Suit and Zero G Cbt, and maybe Ships Boat or even Prospecting. JOT 1) might give her L0 in these. It might also give her L0 is say, mechanic, as this is sort-of related to her Engineering skill.
Having said all that I will go along with final ruling. I favour the JTAS ruling for the purely selfish reason that Duncan’s available reroll tables are all crap… as he ended up in stewards/pursers rather than than one of the tech departments he wanted: he thus wanted electronics skill…
As we have already made use of the air raft 0/ ATV 0 default it would not relly do to give an alternative roll- unless Nick gave everyone ,say 3 L 0 skills based on your homeworld, and assume some of us took ATV/Air raft.
Lets assume Dianne comes from
Hi Ian – welcome to the same page ;-)
MT cleaned up a lot of the Classic Traveller rules (and introduced a few quirks of its own)
For Classic Traveller, there were some later books (Book 4: Mercenary, Book 5: High Guard – probably both good ones to pick up if you’re interested) that introduced new skills, including Liaison & Legal (which is why they’re not mentioned in some other bits)
Of course, more skills might make JOT more useful, but Classic Traveller doesn’t seem to have that MT ‘untrained Penalty’ by default – it’s in a few of the skill descriptions, but it’s usually -5, and the rest of the skills don’t mention it.
I don’t quite understand Nicks proposal, but I think we’d loose 0-Medic skill (So if Splinter gets shot, he’s scr*wed), and a lot of the flexibility that JOT might have given us (Want to be able to dance? Sorry, not a related skill, etc) We can just keep asking every time we want to try something, I’m sure we’ll figure it out given a few examples.
First off Nick, my apologies, I’ve been trying to read up on this stuff over the last couple of months in my spare time and I confused MGT with CT. MGT rules are the ones that give an alternate view of Defaults/JoT~
1) All skills which the character is untrained in are rolled at (-3).
2) Each level of JoT subtracts 1 from this default.
3) JoT can never give a character greater than level/0 in any skill, thus rendering JoT/4 and above useless.
Again, I’m sorry for the confusion on my part between MGT and CT but this does bring up a valid point regarding JoT/2 and above in CT (the one you’ve actually been discussing while I’ve been obliquely approaching the subject :-) ~
“Jack of all trades, however, is never sufficient for an individual to achieve standing in
another skill. Use of the skill in medical situations does not imply medic skill. Use of the skill to pilot a ship in an emergency does not imply pilot skill.”
“Jack of all trades can be considered to confer skill level-0 in every other skill (but never level-1).”
Why not just reroll the skill roll at JoT/2 for another skill? By definition, JoT/2 CANNOT exist under CT rules. At worst, with a cruel GM, it is a wasted skill roll. At best, it is a reroll. Also, I was under the impression (I may have been buzzed :-) that you said in chat that we could consider all PCs, at least those who’d grown up on mid to high tech worlds, to have certain mundane skills like Drive at level/0? If I’m wrong and you were only applying that to JoT characters, I apologize.
My confusion stems in part from confusion over which rules we’re using (and occasionally which rules I’m reading ;-) ~ For instance, I’m having trouble finding Liason skill in the CT books? Parkway mentioned that Liaison/5 gave Katja Streetwise/4 by extension and I can’t figure out where to look for that. And, in the article you sent us regarding Imperial High Law, they mention Defense lawyers as needing a certain level of Admin skill, rather than Legal or even Advocate skill. Why would this be? I’m confused!!!! Where should I be looking for descriptions of the skill sets we are using? Which books? Help!!!! I’ve downloaded the first three CT books (the 1981 editions), as well as the complete Snapshot, and I have most of MGP Traveller, but what other CT books should I get?
If everyone wants to reroll for J-o-T, that’s fine, but it would create problems such as the fact that, technically speaking, no one in the party would be able to drive either the ATV or the air/raft if no one had J-o-T.
The basic version of J-o-T in all of the original CT rules I have got says the following:
“The well-rounded individual (the renaissance man, so to speak) is uncommon in all societies, but is naturally proficient when he or she occurs.
This skill is a general ability which may be applied to nearly any endeavor at the discretion of the referee. The jack of all trades can attempt activity which is not normally possible due to the absence of skills or expertise. Unskilled people have no idea how to even start many projects; jack of all trades can apply this skill to such a project as if he or she has the skill. Jack of all trades can be considered to confer skill level-0 in every other skill (but never level-1).
For example: one of a group of adventurers arrives at an aging crisis (page 8) while on an
expedition into the wilds of a unsettled planet. No one has medical expertise. Jack of all
trades can be applied as a substitute for medical skill in this situation; the referee should assume that the person has studied independently at some time or has seen such a crisis previously and knows something of what to do. When using jack of all trades skill, the referee should also consider appropriate personal characteristics (intelligence, education), availability of equipment (drugs, medical instruments), and other factors (weather, shelter, the specific situation).
Jack of all trades, however, is never sufficient for an individual to achieve standing in
another skill. Use of the skill in medical situations does not imply medic skill. Use of the skill to pilot a ship in an emergency does not imply pilot skill.
There’s nothing in there about taking a -3 for no skill down to a -2 because of J-o-T. Maybe this came in a later edition of the rules, but it is not mentioned in the classic rules above. So I thought that we were fairly clear already as to what J-o-T-1 does and doesn’t cover and so we were just debating the effects of J-o-T-2 and higher, which is why I am referring to the JTAS article as it’s the nearest thing to canon I have discovered.
I wouldn’t say that the additional skills are ‘sort of random’. Read the descriptions of streetwise, carousing, liaison and admin and, the way I read it at least, there are massive overlaps between all of these skills. Only one of these skills is ever going to be applied to any task so I don’t think it gives massive advantages. Liaison -2 would probably be more useful than all these -1 skills put together.
The JoT seems more complicated now. What can I use JoT/1 for? And, aren’t the defaults in the classic rules -3? How does JoT/1 give level/0 in most mundane activities when each level of JoT eliminates 1 point of penalty? Not trying to be a problem, I really am confused. Also, did you just give Duncan 5 sort of random skills in exchange for giving up 1 level of JoT? Why go through all the gymnastics? Why not just have Dianne and I reroll once each and have Duncan reroll two (or even three) rolls? I really think this skill is broken.
Ian (I think I’m up to four cents, which is my opinion limit ;-)
Fine with me: I think its good that JOT relates to your existing skills rather than allowing you to be (eg) a capital starship pilot/ underground mole driver/black globe operator- though if you were a starship pilot (small ships) it MIGHT give you some bonus in starship pilot (capital ships)
OK, I finally managed to find something on defining J-o-T on page 31 of JTAS 18. You can read it for yourself at:
I am happy to go with this as is. J-o-T -1 still gives skill-0 in most regular everyday tasks which don’t take years of training to do logically (see my earlier post on the skills which I think are not covered). So this is how they would apply to Dianne and Dev with their J-o-T-1.
With regards to Duncan’s J-o-T -2, here is my interpretation.
Looking at his skillsets, we can see that they major in two separate areas.
The first is technical – his Commo-2, Computer -1 and (to a slightly lesser extent) Gunnery -1. Because of this, I will say that his J-o-T-2 would give him Electronics-1 as a related skill.
The second major group of skills are to do with his being a ‘people person’, including his Steward-2, Liaison-1, Gambling-2 and Legal-1.
I will therefore give him the following related skills:
Please let me know if you are happy with this. I think it’s a fair interpretation of the rules.
I ran the traveller adventure years ago and I enjoyed running Gvoudron the Vargr major NPC. He was an excellent way of getting the group into trouble, or tweaking their movements.
which for me would be shipboard life i think- the one I rolled JOT.
If we’re going to eliminate JOT (which there is a strong case for) it should be all or nothing- ie we all do it. Possible allow player to pick a skill off an appropriate table, or reroll as DM decides.
I will have great fun in playing Vargr when you finally get to interact with some of them.
If I just mix together the worst personality traits of Egyptians and Russians, I think then I should have no trouble in really bringing them to life!
“OH MY FUCKING GOD! IT’S A TALKING DOG!!!!!”
Right – hide the Booze and for goodness sake, don’t leave anything valuable lying around!
Thieving bl**dy Vargr – can’t trust ’em an inch, I say!
You have seen my avatar, right? lol!
I agree, JoT is too powerful to use in just any old circumstance. But, if we’re gonna start defining skill sets where it shouldn’t apply we’re gonna run out of skills pretty fast. We can all agree that Piloting a Starship shouldn’t be something you do without training. But who here wants to use a JoT to do his critical legal work? His home electrical or plumbing repairs? His dentistry???? The point to JoT is that it mitigates the default penalties for trying any skill with no training. It does not allow attempts at greater than level/0. So, either we go GURPs style and start having a whole raft of “related” skills, grouped into trees, which can and can’t be JoT’d, or we remember that the defaults are pretty steep and that JoT is really only intended for “desperation” moves, like pulling up on the stick at the last moment to avoid a crash after the real pilot has had a heart attack. And then it’s a whole ‘nother ball of wax when you’ve got to land the thing in a crosswind on a dirt runway 20 minutes later.
Personally, I’ve never really liked JoT and don’t see why you’d eliminate JoT/2 and Jot/3 just to keep JoT/1. Why not just eliminate the whole skill? It was really more important before Snapshot gave all PCs (Weapon)/0. Then Mongoose came along and instituted a whole raft of “basic training” and “cultural/backround” skills at level/0. By the time you add GM specific “house rules” skills at level/0, it turns out most PCs can shoot/drive/use basic electronics/read/write/etc. at levels already well above the defaults. So what’s the point of JoT if we’re going to give out so much of the total skill set at level/0 and then we’re going to eliminate a major portion of the remaining skills from having JoT apply at all? What are we left with, a JoT which only applies to non critical skills which can have no real impact on the game? A JoT limited to removing 1 point of default penalty?
Get rid of the skill!
Just my two cents.
Dev/Ian, “woof, woof”
A note on aliens which came into my mind while doing some reading last night.
Although the party has not interacted with any since the campaign, it doesn’t mean that there are none in the Third Imperium. There probably wouldn’t be any on Forboldn as it is such a primitive backward planet and there would not have been many on Ruie as the starport is so basic.
On Regina though – and on all other worlds with big and busy starports/startowns – there were and will be aliens present and you would all have had some encounters with them at some point, particularly Vargr.
I just wanted to let you know this now so that, as and when you do meet some aliens, you don’t think your character is going to go “OH MY FUCKING GOD! IT’S A TALKING DOG!!!!!”
With regards to JOT again:
If you would like to stick with JOT-1 and make a reroll on one of the main Merchant tables to reallocate your second skill in this, I would be very happy as it would lessen the problems that we are having defining the skill. Please let me know if you would like to do this and what you rolled (and how).
Looking through the list of skills in Book 1, the only skills I think which JOT would definitely not give skill-0 in would be Engineering, Pilot, Ship’s Boat and exotic vehicles like helicopters and aircraft. Air/raft should be OK as they are very standard vehicles on most high-tech worlds and so one could assume that they are designed to be nearly idiot-proof.
If a player is away, then we just NPC them. So it would mean a character having to leave the party on a permanent basis to change the situation, which everyone will be aware of well before each session.
Again though, all of the above are not definitive. Don’t blame me – blame Marc Miller – it was his fault for coming up with such a vague idea as to how a skill should work!
I must admit – one of the things I like about Classic Traveller is the way it keeps things simple. One of the things I hate is that Character Generation su*ks for anything other than getting a completely random character – generating a combat-thug isn’t too hard, but getting a good Engineer, or someone with Streetwise is really difficult. It was written by wargamers, back in the 70’s, so I can forgive it most of these faults though.
JOT is one of those skills that don’t quite fit with the way everything else works – in later editions of the rules, it works differently: giving you extra chances to retry a failed attempt, for example.
“Jack of all trades can be considered to confer skill level-0 in every skill (but never level-1).”
My biggest gripe with it is the way you can roll it multiple times: Should you count all but one as a wasted skill roll, or should you gain multiple levels in multiple skills? Either option seems a bit harsh – I’d tend to go for either a reroll or choose 1 skill.
1. If you really want that extra complexity, we’d need a list of skills it did & didn’t apply to: Medic? Air/Raft? Traveller skills are all treated the same: There’s no ‘advanced’ category, unless you write your own – and at that point, you might want to move to another version of the rules anyway.
2. would be fine if it just did what it says in the skill description – adding 0 to any existing skill would make no difference.
3. Would be a real headache – I’d rather give up the skill altogether than not know from week to week what it’ll let me do! If a party member joins/leaves/isn’t there that week, does the list of things I can use it for change?
I think it’s a powerful skill – just how useful it is depends on how strictly the GM enforces the ‘no-skill penalty’: A few of the skills mention it in their description (Streetwise & Vac Suit, for example) but most of them dont – which ones can you try anyway and which are impossible without at least one level of skill?
My thoughts on Jack-of-Trades:
1. It will only ever apply to something that a regular member of the public could be able to do without specialist training (i.e driving, streetwise, bribery, etc. are OK, but piloting starships, engineering or anything else that would take years of training are not).
2. It can never be added to another skill that the character already has.
3. From a gameplay point of view, it is a party’s/GM’s ‘get out of jail free card’ when the party really needs a particular skill to get them out of a fix. If another player already has that skill, then it will not replicate it (irrational maybe, but I just think it makes for a better game in this situation rather than having one character who is a know-it-all superhero).
Please feel free to debate/disagree. The judge’s decision is not final and I am prepared to be persuaded to change my mind if someone has a good enough argument!
Although my eyes glazed over well before I had read and comprehended all of the GURPS info, I think that one glaring omission is probably economies of scale.
I haven’t studied the spaceship construction rules carefully (I have data and plans for more than enough off-the-shelf ships) realistically the cost of building and running one 50,000 ton ship should be a fraction of the cost of building and running fifty 1,000 ton ships and so it should be possible for the big guys to make decent returns on routes where there are huge amounts of cargo, even if the price was a lot lower than Cr1000/ton.
My biggest problem with the Gurps trade rules is that they haven’t actually looked at the numbers – like most of the Traveller trade systems, they’ve decided what result they want, and then written their descriptions around it.
For interstellar trade to reach the kinds of volumes they want – something comparable to current real-world trade – it would have to be equally cheap. I found a site that gives you a quote to ship one ‘standard’ shipping container, plugged in numbers for New Orleans to Alexandria in Egypt, and it quoted me $3080.70 That’s pretty close to the costs per ton in Traveller – for a ‘one-off’ shipment, 2 tons volume.
The difference is, there’s not that much scope to reduce the price for bulk shipping – the bigger the starship, the more it costs to build – and the investors are going to want to see a profit after spending that much. With listed prices per ton as low as Cr300, there’s no way to ship bulk cargo without making it too expensive to bother with – unless you’d otherwise be going back empty!
That was exactly my reaction on reading GURPS Far Trader too!
I spent a couple of hours staring at the system until I thought “Hang on, what am I doing here? I am playing this game as a way of escaping my everyday life which is mostly involved with handling the tedious minutiae of business transactions and I am now reading a rule system which is all about handling the tedious minutiae of business transactions! It might be realistic, but it ain’t fun any more!”
You’re very right about their being so many different ‘official’ rules that don’t tie in with one another. I am rolling each day for new starships arriving (actually using tables that also came from GURPS Far Trader) and nothing new has turned up recently. I guess that a lot of the traffic there is probably just passing through doing a scoop and shoot at the gas giant though).
It did cross my evil mind about taxing your income on some of these deals (there are probably rules for this somewhere). I thought that it would be a bit too cruel to you though (and more importantly, too dull).
I will definitely be getting cruel on you at some point, but only when it leads to some interesting adventures!
I’m not sure what would be involved in the bookkeeping she could do for us, but I’m all for anything that enriches the game.
(OOC~ my wife had an idea. She’s a bookkeeper and said it we want true realism, she’ll set up fake books for the Dawn. Problem is, I can’t get her price down ;-)
LOL about GURPS. I got my start on Steve Jackson Games. In fact, before we tried Snapshot, we used a homebrew system based heavily on Melee/TFT for our Traveller combat (CT combat prior to Snapshot sucked weenies). Then GURPS came along and I loved it! Especially character creation. Still do, just can’t get anybody to play a game where one action requires referencing a dozen variables (usually in three different books) ;-) Worse yet, my buddies are now all old and lazy and only want to play “squishy” games, especially anything with FUDGE dice. I’m all for a good story, but sometimes I do miss GURPS, with its tables for darn near everything. I agree with you about the broken trade systems though, Parkway. GURPS, CT, MT, they’re all disfunctional in one way or another. Still, as with combat systems and character death, to get a truly realistic trade system for the Traveller universe would probably require the characters to go bankrupt every year or so ;-) I guess it just proves GM and Player creativty supercedes even the best system. Now I’m gonna go have an Ale with Duncan while Dianne prowls the streets like a lioness!
Reading GURPS Traveller Far Trader…Brain hurts!
Just remember two things when you’re looking to incorporate source material from the web:
For instance, Forboldn – where’s the one Starship a day that the trade map says it gets? Despite the fact that it’s got no real starport and no fuel available! It would make the adventure you designed there a little more difficult if you let someone else decide how much traffic it sees.
That’s what I always like about Classic Traveller – the universe was pretty much your to do with as you wished. Borrow the bits you like, and treat the rest as ‘suggestions’.
As for your point about it being ‘My Traveller Universe’, one of the main attractions for me of the game is the masses of data, information and rules that have been produced over the years.
Nearly all of the players in the game have been playing for decades and so know how the Traveller universe works and to have a good idea as to what they can expect from each world. I like this because players should then have a similar amount of understanding as to what they can expect from each eventuality to that which their characters should have.
I deliberately wanted to start the game in probably the most clichéd world in the most clichéd sector so that the players would have a good idea of what is where. If I decided to completely ignore canon and decided that Regina is actually the setting for Planet of the Apes, but for the fact that it is currently being attacked by Klingons, then it would lose all of these advantages.
If GMs have the imagination for it, then I’m certainly not saying that there is anything wrong in their creating a Planet of the Apes vs. Klingon world. But I would suggest that they set their campaigns in sectors well outside the Imperium and the detailed sectors – having the party members on an exploration voyage.
That would be fun too – but I’m not sure that I would have the imagination to pull off interesting new worlds over and over again.
Being totally anal about stuff like this, I just came across this page:
Researching a bit more, I discovered that a TEU stands for a ‘Twenty-foot Equivalent Unit’ – basically a standard shipping container. This apparently equals an average load of 14 tons.
So it basically means that the world’s shipping fleet is carrying 182 million tons of cargo most of the time. That’s a lot!
I guess, to put things in perspective, arriving in a yacht on a new starport is like arriving in Hong Kong Harbour with something the size of a tug boat and trying to find some company who is interested in your taking one container to San Diego.
Why would any major company be in the slightest bit interested in using you for one tiny little job when you have no reputation, no history, no infrastructure and no guarantee that you won’t just head off for Jakarta with their cargo, never to be seen again? So I guess it is realistic that free traders would have such a small amount of cargo available to them, even if there are tens of thousands of tons going out of the port each week.
I agree that speculative trade would be very risky for the reason you give. You would have absolutely no idea as to what demand would be like at the receiving end because of the lack of communications, so 40% – 400% variation doesn’t seem that unrealistic.
If I was going to be really anal, I would say that anyone who was basically going back and forth between two worlds should have less variables because they would already have found buyers and sellers and so there are less chances of discovering that no one is prepared to offer a decent price for the speculative goods. But, as Dev says, with it taking 3-4 weeks to go from one world to another and back again, there are still chances of things going wrong, like your previous buyer still being stuck with the old stock, so nothing could ever be guaranteed.
One of the underlying assumptions I always find myself battling regarding commerce in Traveller is that of modern communications. I always have to remind myself that there is no faster than light radio, thus, outside of very well established routes, all trade would be speculative. Can you imagine travelling through two or three jumps, only to find your potential supplier had died in the intervening month? Or they had maybe gone bankrupt? It would be, as Parkway mentioned, very much like sailing ships, perhaps with faster transit times, but still with the chance your Breadfruit might rot in the hold while your crew mutinied on a garden planet…
I think the ‘Speculative Trade’ that the Traveller books cover is quite different from the ‘Scheduled Trade’ the big operators run. I’d guess they organise cargos when they start building the ship, and you have to book space on their ships weeks, months or years in advance (if they’ll talk to the public at all.)
Traveller starships were maybe modelled around old-world sailing ships – it takes a week to get anywhere, plus a day either end getting to and from jump distance.
Still, none of the trade systems are perfect – if you want more or bigger ships at Regina, less at Rhylanor, whatever – it’s your Traveller Universe.
Yes, you are right – it was Porozlo and not Jae Tellona that was producing so much trade. The only other route in the Spinward Marches producing that level is Mora and somewhere else.
Conversely though, there’s a lot less trade going through Regina that I thought there would have been.
I prefer smaller volumes being available. But the rules say all along that the Tukeras, Al Morals, Oberlindes, etc. are the ones who have the big ships and are getting the vast majority of the business, leaving Free Traders to pick up the rest.
I guess it is logical though. If a plane decided to land in Heathrow for the first time and find a one off cargo that needed flying to New York, he would struggle to find many takers when BA, AA, United, etc. have their infrastructure already in place and a regular timetable.
Ah – you’re thinking of Rhylanor-Porozolo: Both Very Hi-tech, A-Starport, Hi-Pop worlds. That’s still a crazy amount of cargo to be shifting, but it’s possible. Going to be hellishly crowded at those starports, mind.
Looking at that map, there must be a lot more J-2 and J-3 Liners and traders than you’d think – those lines just leap all over the place!
It even has sleepy old Forboldn seeing a new ship every day, scheduled freighters, 1000t of cargo a week – And they haven’t got more than a spot of bedrock for a port.
As they say – your mileage may vary.
Ah – but those numbers are based on a later version of Traveller – things got gradually bigger and wierder, as the years went on. Classic Traveller was much more about Player-sized ships & Fleets.
The trade system was never designed to ‘work’ – it’s there to give players something to do, and keep them from making too much profit & getting rich & bored. Then, people decided that interstellar trade had to be massive – to support all the million-ton battleships they wanted to play with…
Look at Jae Tellona: It’s got less than a million people! Do you think they produce ten tons of high value export a month each? And do they need ten tons of supplies to do it, or are the traders travelling empty for half their run?
The numbers don’t work once you try to make them more than scenery. It’s just down to you whether you want a Traveller universe where a million and a half tons of cargo shipping arrives every day…
Yes, the H1 heading here is freaking huge! I find that H4 is as large as I ever really need to go.
A 1000 ton bulk carrier would be good as long as you kept to the major starports. I would have thought that 650T would be hard to fill each world anywhere else.
I seem to remember that even the 600T Subsidized Merchants struggle to make profits (which is why they need to be subsidized).
Even 1000T bulk traders are tiny in comparison to what the big boys would be using on the busiest routes.
There is an interesting chart downloadable based upon the probably realistic but insanely complicated GURPS Far Trader rules.
So the Rhylanor to Jae Tallona route would be the one to work. With 10 million tons of cargo a week being moved between the two world, even a 1000T trader is just going to be a minnow!
Curse the lack of an ‘edit’ function on this board! That’s a slightly bigger heading than I had in mind!
Actually, I’ve had another look at the Classic Traveller prices for Hulls (By far the most expensive part of a 1000t ship) and it’s biased toward the smaller ships. I’ll run the numbers for a 600t hull, and see if they’re more profitable…
Well, that would halve our profits – we’d be better off with two middle-passage passengers.
Still – thinking about what you said about jump ships, I had a play with the classic Traveller ship designs, and worked out what the competition would look like:
J-1, M-1, 650t Cargo capacity. MCr191 (Without weaponry.)
Built using the Classic Traveller rules, except for a modified hull as per High Guard (Flattened sphere, -20%, otherwise the hull almost doubled the cost!) Streamlined, and with a spare Comp-1 to run the turrets.
For a standard 240th loan repayment, it needs Cr795,833/Mth – with 650t of cargo space, and figuring 2 jumps per month, the least they could charge and break even would be Cr612/t to carry cargo. So, at least they could make a profit at standard cargo rates.
This is the kind of ship that shuttles back and forth between high-population worlds – places than can reliably generate 1300t of cargo a month. It could be a lot cheaper if it wasn’t designed to operate in atmosphere, but this gives it the most flexibility. A High-tech, A-Starport world might have, what? Ten of these? Fifty? More? All hoovering up the nearby Jump-1 trade that would otherwise be making us rich…
If you downloaded the revised Word doc where I amended the chances of getting ‘problem’ or ‘adventure’ results on the location table, I also added a line that GMs would need to use common sense on very low-pop worlds.
On Whanga, if the entire population consists of just 20 scientists, it will only take a couple of hours to chat with them about buying or selling cargo – and then you can be on your way again if there is nothing of interest here.
With regards to High Passage passengers who want to go two worlds away, on a backward part of the Spinward Main, I would rule that yes, it would be possible to find passengers like this (so few ships pass this way that beggars can’t be choosers). They will only pay Cr10,000 to go the two jumps though – not Cr10,000 for each.
Well, I’d hate to miss a chance to risk my life for profit ;-)
Going to take an age to find a buyer on Whanga, and another age to find someone with a cargo to sell – and I’m a little worried about using unrefined fuel in all these out-of-the-way ‘Starports’.
I’m not sure about the ‘High Passage’ rules – can we get passengers who want to go more than one jump away? Would we get to charge them the full 10K per jump? No-one’s likely to want to go to Whanga, but maybe Alell, Uakye or Efate would be more popular destinations. I realise that would tie us down to a route, but the money’s always nice…
Shame if you miss Whanga – there’s a really cool adventure there that I was going to run you through.
Just checking the canon, there is just a team of 20 surveyors from Sternmetal Horizons based there and so they probably won’t be selling or buying anything anyway.
Sure, there is nothing wrong with having several of you looking for good cargo.
Maybe I could be talking into allowing you to haul cargo in the Ship’s Boat. No way I would allow you to carry cargo in a stateroom though – it would end up completely trashing the place!
You are right about the problems/adventures being too common on a 1d6 table. A 1 in 6 chance of something bad happening would just make it too risky.
So I have now updated the chart to make is a 2D6 system. There is now just a 1 in 36 chance of a cargo turning into a major problem and a 1 in 18 chance of it being a minor problem (adventures have the same chances now).
You can check out the amended location/problem chart at:
I was hoping we’d skip Whanga if we went that way – use the second lot of fuel and bounce right through the place. Nothing there but a Naval base. A mere twenty hours for checks on the drives and a navigational fix, etc, then jump again. Haven’t run the numbers for it though.
I’d imagine the delay on a tiny world like Whanga would be in getting the word out – somebody, somewhere might have a cargo sitting in storage, if we can only persuade them the time is right to sell.
Liason was new in the supplement books: It’s in the skill description in High Guard, Merchant Prince, etc – not sure about later compendiums.
I was thinking we’d need as many people making rolls to find cargo as possible – just to get a chance of something high value. With such a tiny, tiny cargo hold, we’re hardly in the same market as ‘regular’ traders – even the standard Free Trader has five times our cargo capacity, a Subsidised Merchant could lift the equivalent of our whole ship!
We have to look for small, ultra-high value trades, so we’re going to be turning down most deals. First one to land a really good cargo will probably end the search for the rest of us, as the hold will be full.
That’s why I was thinking of loading the ships boat: a dozen extra tons would make no difference to regular traders – the smallest one that carries it’s own boat is the 400t Subsidised Merchant, and adding 13 tons to their 200t capacity would just be a waste of their time (it’s far more useful to them to ferry passengers) For us, though, it could double the cargo space (and thus double the profits.) I’ve seen players in ‘Type S’ Scouts try carrying cargo in staterooms – they’re about the only traders with less capacity than us. It would make it awkward to transport passengers though, so I understand if you don’t like the idea.
That ‘Problem’ table is going to cause us no end of worry – it’s not so bad when it’s a few thousand credits, but when you start talking about tens of thousands (or millions) of credits per ton, and a one in six chance of an attempted rip-off, our Noble Captain is going to be prematurely grey!
That all makes sense about the trade goods. Yes, PriNat is Primary Extraction. Maybe I should change the tab to PriExt.
One thing though is that you can’t choose to search for a particular category of trade good, because there is a good chance that it won’t be present in any quantity on the individual world.
For example, your next stop is Knorbes. This is an Amish, Disneyland, Britain in Bloom garden world type planet which exists mainly on revenues from tourism and sector subsidies. With their tech only reaching the level of picks and shovels and wanting to keep their planet pretty, the chances of them digging out a lot of interesting minerals is going to be pretty remote. As a result, pretty much all of the trade goods on offer here will be Primary Agriculture or Low-Tech – like it or not.
In contrast, if you carry on towards Efate, your next stop would be Whanga, which is a young, volcanic world owned by Sternmetal Horizons. This will only have Primary Extraction available and nothing else (maybe not even that if you are unlucky!)
I realize that in circumstances where there are just 10 people living there (Pixie is another example) the time model falls to pieces as it would only take a few minutes to determine what trade goods were available (and perhaps a few hours of schmoozing to get the price down).
After that would be Alell, which is a ‘Vegas in the Caribbean’ resort world. So again you are unlikely to find much in the way of Primary Extraction there.
One question – is it written somewhere that Liaison -5 is the same as Broker -4? At one point I thought the same thing too, but now I can’t see where it is written any more.
So – walking through a sample trade, I get Primary Extraction (The table says PriNat, I’m guessing that’s the one you mean?): Bauxite
It’s fixed at Cr1000/t, -2 modifier for this being an NI world, +1 for the target world being rich and agricultural. So – a base profit of (1100-800)= Cr300/t
Rolling on the ‘Actual Value’ table, with +4 for Katja, I get 10, becomes 14=140%. That gives us Cr1540/t A profit of Cr740/t.
So – we won’t bother with low-value bulk cargos, unless we’re desperate. To make a solid profit, we need cargos that cost at least Cr4000/t, at a guess. Anything less, and we’re better off carrying someone elses cargo, at standard Cr1000/t
That could keep us all busy when we hit dirtside – the more rolls we make, the more chance of finding a suitable cargo. Even Dianne could look, with her JOT-1. In this case, we’d be looking for ‘Primary Extraction’ goods – the Agricultural is mostly too cheap, and the Lo-Tek get really lousy trade modifiers.
Say: Leather Goods. Base Cr10,000 1D*5 , 6 tons available (11t if Katja found them!)
-3 modifier here, -2 mod to sell, actual value table rolls says: 4+4 = 110%
(10000 × 0.8 × 1.1) – (10000 × 0.7) = Cr1800 profit/t
That’s not much of a margin, so say Katja looks for another buyer – which takes more precious time: 9+4 = 200% (!) That gives us a very healthy profit of (10000 × 0.8 × 2) – (10000 × 0.7) Cr9000/t. I think we could live with that – Cr99,000 profit on a Cr77,000 purchase is the kind of deal that keeps you in business.
Thanks for the comments on the Trade System.
With regards to the cost of the goods, I was going to stick with the Book 7 rules, so no skill-based mods on buying price. I will, however, allow the Liaison mods for finding more cargo. So if there were normally 2D tons of cargo available, Katja would be able to locate 2D+5 tons because of her Liaison-5.
Good lateral thinking about loading up the Ship’s Boat cargo bay, but I’ve not seen that done before anywhere so I’m not going to allow it!
As for the value of staterooms, each one nets Cr2000 per trip per ton, compared to Cr1800 per low berth/ton and Cr1000 for freight. Obviously if you can always buy low and sell high and find enough cargo, spec trade is always going to give you the best margin, but it’s not guaranteed. You are currently running with five empty staterooms to sell – you should be able to fill them up with High Passengers each time.
Been looking at the trade system:
Looked at the ship design rules: With the extra fuel for a second jump, the Red Dawn’s about the best you’ll get for small, high-value cargos. It might be worth looking at dismountable (internal) fuel tanks – which would allow us to swap 20t of fuel for cargo space – but that would require a refit, and somewhere to store the tanks when not in use.
I agee with Nick and Hagen. The game has flaws, the players can make mistakes, the GM has limits, the system isn’t perfect. I’m still having fun ;-)_Time to move on.
I didn’t ignore anything, I understand how the game works. Thanks for telling me that IR can’t see through solid rock. The corrupted png is probably what hung the jvm using the .jar file, so no, I didn’t see them.
Moving on is an idea…
You ignored the part of my message regarding the fact that there is no way of handling completely simultaneous movement in the game – Snapshot, CT – any other variant of Traveller or any other RPG of which I am aware.
If you see the original huge PNG files I sent through originally you will have seen that the cave system is like a honeycomb – the version I drew out with the squares is a lot easier for defensive positions as there is a lot more line of sight available than on the original version.
IR goggles cannot see through solid rock or around corners.
The fact of the matter is that Hagen had used all of his AP’s for the turn. You can’t store up unused ones at the end of each turn if you haven’t used them all. He couldn’t have covered the entrance either as it takes a full turn to cover an area.
Are we going to post mortem this ad nauseum or are we just going to move on?
If they had been in the tunnels, I would have seen them with the IR, it sees 1260m, or would have heard them moving, naturally. I had moved only 8 squares, at any point in time hearing or seeing them I would have either fired or moved back. Though if I had seen them down the tunnel, I would have fired a RAM HE grenade down there (8D plus group hits by HE) or a ten round burst (3 hits on target and 4 group hits by auto-fire). The fact I didn’t see/hear anything, is why I moved forward to scout.
Rorke’s Drift was a fortified position defended with massed fires, the Zulu only attacked piecemeal, then after suffering moderated casulties from their regiments (about 15-20%) they moved off. We had neither massed fires or covered/fortified positions.
Unfortunately I don’t know any RPG rules that can handle truly simultaneous actions. I imagine that, if there is one, it would take forever to work through a combat.
The yetis had 15AP and so moved after you. Running, they would be able to move 22 squares, which was more than enough to bring them into your line of sight from where they were out of it further into the tunnels with enough AP left over to attack.
I know how snapshot works, I’ve played it before, and I know the descrepancies between it and CT. I also know a lot of it is unrealistic, eg: what is a snapshot? I’ve owned plenty of firearms, I know how they work. Every shot you shoot with a rifle is aimed.
For some reason my first post didn’t save! what it said was: the best way to win at snapshot is to know what you character can do in a turn. Go through the action options and make lists:
19AP= 2 aimed attacks or 4 snapshots or 2 grenades or move 5 squares + 3 snapshots etc etc
Remember actions such as overwatch or reloading(while sneaking) cost all your AP for that turn!
I had looked down the halways and seen if anything was there, I was told there was nothing, suddenly there was. I wasn’t in on any of the planning on anything that was going even going into it, because of the software glitch.
Glad my mumblings helped, Nick is spot on with his dispersal diagram. Imagine overwatch down those tunnels FA, HE shots at anything that moves till your ammo runs out!!
Well, Dev has some ideas for the next time we face serious combat! First, to avoid any more “accidents”, Dev should switch to an ACR, giving him a semiauto option. He’ll also gain HE round ability for more damage. Second, Richard is actually more Dextrous by 1 point, so he’s really the one who should be loaded up with grenades. This makes sense in another way too, as he can manuever behind Hagen and I, lobbing in support of our direct fire! Having said all this, Dev feels a strong sense of longing for a climate controlled berth on the Red Dawn, followed by a spaceport bar where he can spend some of his share of the loot…
Something like this would have been a good defensive position to have adopted after you had dealt with the first wave:
Many thanks to Splinter for providing a quick guide to Snapshot. It all makes a lot of sense.
If anyone needs a copy of the full rules, then please email me and I can send you a copy.
I must admit that I do play pretty fast and loose with the rules in order to keep combat going at a reasonable pace as the online nature of our game makes combat a lot slower than it would be if we were playing face-to-face. However, I would say that this fast and loose style benefits the party at least 75% of the time, especially as the party’s main death dealers have more Action Points than the bad guys almost always.
As for not preferring Snapshot over vanilla CT, the combat would have been a complete bloodbath for the party under usual CT rules. Under Snapshot the party’s death dealers were able to make 2-4 attacks per round. If they were only able to make one as per the regular rules, things would have been very different – and not in a good way.
The yetis were not teleporting into combat, they were coming in from further in the caves out of line of sight.
As for party members getting hit with friendly fire, I don’t care what system anyone uses – anyone firing full auto or shotguns into a situation where a friendly and an enemy are locked in a close range melee combat is a pretty dumb thing to do and is going to end up with the good guys also getting hit. This could have been avoided by just switching to semi-auto.
The main reason why the combat turned into a bit of a fiasco though was that your tactics left a lot to be desired. I had to roll my eyes when, at one point, Splinter and Dirk were the ones out in front on the main crossroads where the yetis were emerging from, with all of the well-armored, death dealing characters far away from them.
Splinter’s Roarke’s Drift analogy was exactly how I had the encounter planned. I imagined that the party would form a position where the death dealers would set up the best possible field of fire where they would be able to mow down the yetis before they got into melee range, but it didn’t happen that way.
Dev and Hagen in their Combat Armor were next to impregnable as the yetis needed a natural 12 to do any damage on them at all. It was unlucky for Hagen that one of them actually did get a natural 12 which brought him down.
In summary, Splinter is once again correct when he says that Traveller rules (whether the vanilla CT or Snapshot versions) are a lot more realistic than in most RPG’s and very deadly if it comes to a straight shoot out at medium range with no cover around. No one seemed to have a problem with this when the party was able to mow down a dozen or so bad guys in a round or two without getting a scratch in return.
Hopefully everyone now has a better idea as to what works and what doesn’t work in Traveller. As a rule of thumb, if an action would be a dumb thing to do in real life, then it’s probably going to be a a dumb thing to do in Traveller as well.
I’m not so happy to be playing snapshot, originally I was told it is to be a mix of traveller and snapshot combat. Nor happy to be shot in the back, I’m not a believer in accidents.
Nothing would have helped with magic teleporting yetis though, it is an arbitrary moment, any action becomes equal then.
I will also be printing Splinter’s 101 for quick reference in our future sessions. It was an education in the Snapshot rules that I was sorely lacking, and very much appreciate you going to the trouble of putting together. Dev is correct about that typo, he is the fastest but as far as everything else goes I found the whole entry to be extremely helpful. Up until now I’ve been learning on the fly and taken tactical actions (in some cases) without understanding the risks or the advantages. I certainly see now that melee characters are at a big disadvantage when facing opponents with loaded weapons, which will make me think twice about making suicidal charges in the future.
Also, don’t listen to Dev Hagen; Splinter and I both heard him giggling after he shot you. (We’re just teasing of course, total accident.)
As this wiki was my first look into the inner workings of the Snapshot system, if there are any other sources to look into or if you expand on that 101 over time I will be sure to read over everything.
Actually John, (re splinter’s guide) I found it enormously helpful and have printed it out to have with me on Sundays! As someone who has played lots of RPGs, but _very little _Traveller/Snapshot (and that 30 years ago), I appreciate the both the insight and the experience. In character, Dev would also sincerely like to apologize to Hagen, as there is no excuse for shooting a teammate (and Dev DID NOT enjoy it, don’t believe Splinter and Rich ;-). Just a note, I’ll be around for the early part of the session this coming Sunday (first two hours, maybe a little more), hoping to catch everyone for a little while at least…
(p.s. John you’ve got one typo on the guide~ Rich has 18 AP with B7 stats. Not that Dev’s protective of his status as “fastest”! Also thanks very much for the breakdown on Gren use AP’s, that helps me alot with an area I was very uncertain about!)
Hello! Sorry I’ve been missing. Nick asked me to comment so here I am!
Hi Gents! Hi Eric!
I was glad Nick took his “holiday” when he did. Given the upswing in violence today, he might be weighing his options and considering a delayed return, I know I would! In any case I was really enjoying the runup to the game and am more than happy to wait for his return.
I know we are a bit delayed at the moment, but for those of you that are not aware Nick should be back in Egypt by now. The internet was disabled there by the government in an efforts to contain the situation. We’ll all have to remain patient until things settle down a bit so our GM can make it back online.
Hang in there guys,
I’m familiar with the random casual injuries human beings inflict on one another: concussions, fractures, broken bones as well as the more calculated damage of war: kinetic trauma; high energy burns; decompression damage etc. Also I can deal with ship born parasites and viruses, sexually transmitted diseases, engine room injuries and food poisioning, for everything else i know how to use an index.
I can screen crew for most of the common drugs and only take bribes to hide the trivial stuff, I can monitor battle, fast and slow drug use.I will not admit to any knowledge of psi-drugs.
I can operate service and repair your ship’s computer both in flight and on planet. I can monitor run time efficiency of your inboard systems, secure your data files, clean up your storage medium and maximise efficencey of your computer. I can repair and maintain personal computer equipment, hand terminals,notebooks etc
I can service maintain and repair electrical items as well as electrical components on small arms and personal armour along with comms gear, I’ve some limited experience of vehicular electronics.
I’ve also full membership of TAS with all associated benifits.
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