Thu. Mar 23rd, 2023

I took a look at the landscape for our Friday face-to-face games and realized something – with the loss of one of our players (who had to move out of state for work-related reasons), we no longer have a space-based sci-fi game. Now I’d proposed the Traveller game set in Porozlo a while back, but eventually started leaning more toward resuming Red Sky, my urban fantasy game set in the Dresden Files universe. However, with this lack of a space-based game and at least one player really wanting to play one in mind, I started re-evaluating this decision; also adding to this is the fact another player is going to be running a Night’s Black Agents game in the near future which means it and Red Sky would kind of be pretty close. Thus, I started rethinking about The Verge as an ongoing campaign…

As at least two players had voted against using GURPS – boo! Hiss! – I went ahead and spent the $20 to buy the Mongoose Traveller 2nd Edition core rules set and started reading through them. To my surprise, I didn’t hate what I saw so I promptly started leaning toward using that ruleset in lieu of GURPS (although to be fair, I haven’t yet fully grasped the vehicles or space combat rules, both of which will be important down the road), especially when I realized I’d purchase Prison Planet some time back, a Mongoose Traveller 1st edition adventure that is, as the title indicates, set in a prison. And that’s totally how I want to actually start the campaign.

However, I’m not a super big fan of the Traveller campaign setting – there’s a boatload of issues I have with it that I don’t really want to get into here – and at least two of my fellow players (both from the Saturday group) are equally “Meh” about the 3rd Imperium setting, so I wanted to do something else. And then, I recalled something: Steel Ships and Space Marines.

This is a campaign setting that one of my players has created for some games in the past and there are massive swaths that he’s not really touched at all, so at the moment, I’m sort of leaning toward using it … which means, by necessity, there will need to be some adjustments to the standard Traveller rules slightly (e.g. Jump Drives, although that’s turning out to be relatively easy by putting multiplying the Jump rating by 1000 to fit the established route. We (the group) have had several really good runs in that setting and the location I’ve picked – think Space 17th Century England with lots of Russia mixed in there – is perfect.

I’d also like to retrofit as much of Pirates of Drinax into this as I can if possible. Ultimately though, I’m probably going to spin up a proposal thing for the group with a “these are what I’d like to do … which one do you prefer?” with a straight-up Pirates of Drinax in the Traveller-verse as an option. None of this is super urgent, though, since in three to four weeks, I’ll be taking over the Saturday Fantasy Grounds game for a while to run my GURPS: Action! game. So naturally my brain is refusing to disengage from The Verge…

Interesting times.