Traveller High Society

An RPG Blog

The Traveller game in all forms is owned by Far Future Enterprises. Copyright 1977 - 2016 Far Future Enterprises.
Traveller is a registered trademark of Far Future Enterprises.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Learn to Role-Play Before Refereeing

I wish I had a dollar for every time someone asked me what version of Traveller they should referee for their gaming group's players.

For one thing, I have no idea how they run a game for their gaming group. And for another thing, I have no idea what kind of role-players are in their gaming group.

And for the last thing, just asking me that question tells me that they are not ready to be running any game for any group. They should try being a role-player first of all, and learn to role-play before trying to do anything else. I have videos on how to role-play. Takes five minutes to learn how to do it well.

After a few game sessions, they can them come to me and tell me what they and their gaming group liked or didn't like about Traveller in general so far. Then I can talk more about the versions of Traveller (compare/contrast, etc) and about the various die mechanics and how they help/interfere with role-playing.

A Year Goes By Fast

Well... 2015 (around this time of year) was interesting for Traveller role-players. Still feeling the effects of it a year later.

A year ago, Mongoose Traveller Second Edition was in play-testing, Traveller 5.1 was released, and a series of Agent of the Imperium novels was an idea.

And now we see Mongoose Traveller Second Edition is in print. And we see the first Agent of the Imperium novel is in print, which is based on Traveller 5.1.

I think that was quick. Time flew by for these projects. Schedules were made. Deadlines were met. I had to cancel my book order of Traveller: Prime Directive, because it's been five years now and doesn't look like it will ever be a thing.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Handling 2019 in Your Pre-Traveller Eras

In 1982, I was guilty of using Blade Runner as part of Traveller's future timeline. It kind of made sense, since 2019 was far off enough sci-fi-wise to fit in with far future stuff, etc. I'm sure many did this with their Blade Runner Traveller gaming.

Now that 2019 is almost here, and Los Angeles still looks the same (maybe with a few new taller buildings here and there), we can't really use Blade Runner (the movie) as a setting leading up to Traveller. Assuming still, the whole timeline progression thing.

So Blade Runner 2 is the next try. It takes place decades from now. So "in the far future" again. I'm curious what computers will look like in BR2. If it's still old Syd Mead style analogue stuff, then ya, I may have to make an excuse for Traveller's timeline being tacked onto the sequel's timeline. But if computers are iPhones basically in the new movie, then (what the heck) Traveller will still be a thing much later than the movie takes place in. In the same universe, etc.

I mention this only as a way (there are many other ways, of course) that I would introduce players new to role-playing to using Traveller. Players will already know the setting from the movie, so that won't need explaining to them.

My hope is that BR2 is a good movie.

Another scenario... again, one I've probably used a few times already... and that is, still use Blade Runner as a starting point. But add 40 years to 2019.Same story and all. Just make it 2059 instead.

I have never had a player complain about having some Blade Runner in a Traveller session. Some planet somewhere is bound to be similar to the movie.

Then there are those days when I feel that Traveller has no Blade Runner whatsoever in its timeline, because different timeline.

How will you all handle 2019 in your pre-Traveller eras, if you do?

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

The Best 2D6 Die Mechanic is Now Even Better

For the last week, I've been looking at various 2D6 die mechanics for tabletop role-playing games. A majority of them are very LITE on their rules, even outside of their mechanic. The feeling is more of abstract mechanics.

And there were some 2D6 games that read more like "Modifier City" or "Difficulty Target Range". Like trying to do D100 spreads using 2D6.

I like my 2D6 die mechanics to stay focused on what the task is. And still work the same way, no matter what the task is. I don't want different rules for different tasks. And I don't like RPGs that use some other die mechanic just for their combat. And I'm not a fan of 2D6 rules that are all about winning on your character sheet.

The OGL 2D6 games deal mostly with people (not game designers) copy/pasting skeleton rules from various free sample SRDs, in hopes of creating a complete PDF game that they can file the serial numbers off of so they can sell them. And people buy them, because OGL.

Mongoose Traveller 2nd Edition improves on 1st Edition's 2D6 die mechanic. Die rolls are more focused, moving away from the old way of Referees adding +/- DMs here and there to a player's roll. Which means less calculations for 2nd Edition tasks. Which means less time players are out of role-play.

The best 2D6 die mechanic is now even better.

Monday, July 11, 2016

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

How Alien Are Your Aliens?

A video request where I talk about alien races, alien animals, and alien in-between.

Convincing New Players to Try Traveller

A video request where I talk about getting players interested in Traveller, and into role-playing.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

A Space Elevator Draft

I resumed work on my space elevator last night. It was modeled in Hexagon 1.21 using a repeated stack of links. I think it's 12km tall. Might be more than that. So I can repeat what I've built onto further stacks until it reaches some orbit height somewhere. But for close shots, I had enough of the elevator to work from for this Vue scene.

The longest part was just deciding how big the anchor should be and what that all looks like. I still have a lot of structure to add around the ground connection. I'm thinking of having the elevator go down a ways into the ground. But I still need something in the ground for the elevator shaft to hang onto. So that is being worked out.

This shot could be of a new (found) world. Vacant. For reasons, an elevator was approved first before any starport construction. Maybe the starport will be pre-fabbed on the spot, depending on what materials are left behind when the elevator is completed. If in twenty years, this world is expected to be a busy place, a class A starport will be attached near the base, along with a highport at the other end. Otherwise, it will default to a class C with just drones roaming the wastes until someone wants to make something out of the world.

I needed a real basic image like this for artifact use in a one-shot. Maybe two one-shots ago. So now I made time to make one for show-n-tell with players for the next time. Depending on how that elevator holds up, more stuff may get added to it for another possible one-shot.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Why Not Keep Mongoose Traveller 1st Edition Books?

I was asked about 1st edition Mongoose Traveller about a week ago. At a game store, someone brought up the green titled books, and if I was going to keep mine or not.

I figured they were talking about the new 2nd edition being released, and that maybe they were thinking the 1st edition books were not compatible. I didn't have much time to answer, because of some game events starting up. I just remember saying that I planned on keeping the 1st edition books because of their advanced character generation rules.

As I was heading to my car, I was thinking about the different books. One of them was Cybernetics. And I had forgotten why that book was yellow instead of green titled. I think I was driving to Krispy Kreme, still thinking about it.

I just now thought about that question again. And looking at my Traveller bookshelves here, I'm seeing that the book is indeed one of the yellow ones. Which means the rules are not strictly for the Imperium setting. They're more generic in their use.

So I started looking at the other yellow titled books I have. I'll be keeping those as well, because of the generic-ness of them.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Looking for Beta Testers

I'm looking for Beta testers who can test an NPC generator for the next two weeks on their Windows computers.

Message me your email if you want to be a tester.