Traveller: Outbound

My Traveller
A blog for your campaign

OK
I’m gonna be light and quick on the background of this game, so if you want more detail, shoot me questions and I’ll answer them for you.

Basically I’m running a variant of the Traveller Universe with a slant towards gritty dark sci-fi (like Aliens, Outland, Event Horizon, etc). In this universe, the year is 2170. By this time in Classic Traveller history, Earth has become the Terran Confederation and has made First Contact with the 1st Imperium (ruled by the Vilani). After 1st Contact was made almost 100 years ago (after discovering the Jump Drive), Humans and Vilani lived relatively peacefully for about 25 years.

Then Humans feeling the grip of Imperial rule may overwhelm them engaged in the 1st Interstellar Wars. By the year 2155, Humans were able to land a huge victory taking a complete world from the Vilani Empire. Since then, things have been extremely tense. All the while, Humanity has expanded in other directions trying to secure as many systems under it’s rule.

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Traveller: My Mood & Characters
In space, no one can hear you roll

In space no one can hear you scream

For centuries we’ve been watching the skies, when we should have been watching our backs.

Infinite Space—Infinite Terror

In the blink of an eye, the terror begins

Don’t be afraid of the dark. Be afraid of what’s in the dark.

Don’t Panic

;)

Hey, gang

If the above taglines should give you any indication, it’s the general feel for my next campaign. In as few words as possible, it’s a dark, gritty sci-fi game based more on conspiracy, paranoia, suspense, horror, mystery and intense action rather than pure escapist adventure. This has more in common with the ALIEN films, OUTLAND, PITCH BLACK, VIRUS, and 2001, as well as sci-fi series like BABYLON 5, the revamped BATTLESTAR GALACTICA and SPACE: 1999 (and before you snicker, 1999 defenitely had a more darker feel than say STAR TREK).

Now that the mood is set, a little about the setting and rules. I will be using the TRAVELLER rules and system as provided by Mongoose Publishing as well as tons of material and options originally written for all other TRAVELLER eras (Classic, Mega, New Era and T4). The great thing about using this is all the background history, ideas, technology, rules and tools provided by over 40 years of constant playing and evolution.

The actual background for this game is probably too much to go into detail, suffice to say that it will be a modification of the original Traveller setting with a lot of copy pasting from some sci-fi films/series. For one thing, this will be a human centric universe. This leaves any alien species in the role of hostile advesary or mysterious protagonist. However, I am introducing an alternate human race into the mix…that of the Vilani. Long story short, the Vilani are an off-shoot of the human race that have been star faring for more than 1000 years before the launch of Sputnik. By the time we actually managed to get a foothold into space, we actually ran into them. Instead of radically changing our way of life and existence, it was more like the pilgrims landing on Plymouth Rock in the New World…and discovering that there were already people there. In other words, it was immediately looked at as a threat.

A hot war, followed by cold war almost immediately erupted, and has been smoldering for around 100 years since first contact. The situation closely mirrors the cold war feeling of the 60’s and 70’s. Throw in the fact that the Vilani seem to follow some kind of feudal structure, with a culture one can call an anachronism. This allows me to throw in an almost “Dune” like feel into the mix. However, the Vilani are NPC protag/antagonists in my game.

Now, as far as characters are concerned, the Traveller rules are simply a way of randomly rolling stats and skill choices. There are no real classes, but career choices are listed with an emphasis on certain skill choices allowed. The following is some copy/paste text describing the career choices available:

ARMY:

Members of the planetary armed fighting forces. Soldiers deal with planetary surface actions, battles, and campaigns. Such individuals
may also be mercenaries for hire.

SUPPORT:
You were an engineer, technician, medic, cook or in some other
role behind the front lines.
INFANTRY:
You were one of the Poor Bloody Infantry on the ground.
CAVALRY:
You rode a tank or other ground vehicle.

MARINES:
Members of the armed fi ghting forces carried aboard starships. marines deal with piracy and boarding actions in space, defend the starports
and bases belonging to the navy and supplement ground forces such as the army.
SUPPORT:
You were a quartermaster, engineer or battlefi eld medic in the Marines.
STAR MARINES:
You were trained to fi ght boarding actions and capture enemy vessels.
GROUND ASSAULT:
They kicked you out of a spacecraft in high orbit and said ‘capture that planet’.
AIR FORCE:
Members of their government’s atmospheric aerial armed forces.
Whether an attack fighter pilot, rescue helicopter jock, or simply a
planning tactician who knows the sky is his to utilise against his
enemies, the members of the air force are used to dealing with
high-technology equipment that allows them to defy their planet’s
gravity, at least for a little while.

Flight: You are a pilot, one of those skilled aviators that form
the front line of any air force.
Support: The pilots get all the glory but without the various
support functions they would never get off the ground.
Air Lift: You served in an air wing that specialised in the
transport of material via the use of air transportation assets.

WET NAVY
Members of the planet’s hydrospheric defence and tactical forces.
Sailors and seamen deal with all of the same things that ground
infantry do, except upon or beneath the oceans.

Surface Fleet: You were a crewman on a surface-skimming
boat, ship or foil.
Submariner: You served in a depth-scouring submergible
vehicles.
Naval Aviation: You were an atmospheric pilot that specialised
in over-sea patrols and conflict.

CADRE
Cadre mercenaries frequently fill tickets that revolve around the
training of new recruits. It is not uncommon for a cadre to be asked
to serve alongside the students for a small mission or two as well,
just to make sure they are ready to perform their job.

Basic Trainer: You teach new recruits basic soldiering.
Physical Trainer: You serve as a fitness trainer for a unit.
Field Exercise Leader: You work alongside your students in
their mission, teaching by example.

COMMANDO
Specialists in the quick strike and incursion commandos are always
in demand where a deadly mission needs to be completed.

Raider: You are a specialist in hit and run attacks.
Technician: You provide the support a commando unit needs
to survive in the field.
Spec Ops: You are involved in the most dangerous of
assignments.

GUERRILLA

Insurgents plague many worlds in the universe, as political
movements, rival powers and corporations all seek to further their
own interests at the expense of current governments or rivals.
Guerillas include those that join these movements out of political
belief (or suffer the misfortune of being drafted into these forces)
but there are also professional mercenaries that move from conflict
to conflict, being paid for by various mysterious backers.

Terrorist: Absolutely devoted to a cause and the most disliked
in regular military circles.
Saboteur: Specialist in the destruction of enemy material.
Assassin: Targeting key enemy personel assassins operate best
in enemy urban territory, far behind the front lines.

SECURITY

The character specialises in tickets surrounding the defence and
protection of their employers or their employers’ assets.

Bodyguard: You serve in a small unit devoted to the protection
of specific individuals.
Ship Security: You provide proper protection for crew and
passengers during long trips.
Site Defence: You protect static locations that require long term
and constant protection.

STRIKER
Strikers are what most laymen think of when they are asked about
mercenaries, and they are easily the most prevalent of the mercenary
careers. They are frontline fighters used when local forces are unable
to act for whatever reason.

Rifleman: You are a regular frontline trooper.
Sniper: You are a specialist marksman.
Breaching Troop: Your are a specialist called upon to board
hostile vessels or attack fortified positions.

WARMONGER
As close to criminals as to mercenaries these individuals are
considered undesirables by most of society. However they are also
well used by governments and their agencies as people who get the
necessary and dirty jobs done.

Gun Runner: You smuggle weaponry across neutral lines to
the various warring factions of the galaxy.
Arms Dealer: You are part of a private group that sells all
sorts of wartime equipment to whoever can come up with the
credits.
Gun Slinger: Unscrupilous thrill seekers who roam from
conflict to conflict, gaining enjoyment from the carnage around
them.

NAVY
CREWMAN

The bulk of the crew on board any naval vessel are low–ranking
crewmen, serving under more senior officers. Unlike other careers,
the crewman career is divided not by specialisation, but by the type
of the navy. Planetary navies are small–scale affairs, normally only a
handful of pirate hunter and customs ships or system defence boats.
Subsector navies are the backbone of the Imperium, providing local
defence and patrolling the spaceways. The Imperial Navy is the
most prestigious assignment, but also the most dangerous.

Planetary Navy: You served in one of the hundreds of local
naval forces across the Imperium.
Subsector Navy: You served in a subsector navy under the seal
of the local duke, battling pirates and protecting trade routes.
Imperial Navy: You served upon a major warship, watching the
borders for incursions by foreign powers.

SUPPORT

The support career is safe and unglamorous, but is vital to the Naval
service. Without drill sergeants and instructors in naval academies,
without doctors and cybernetisists, without administrators and
accountants, the great machine of the navy would grind to a halt.
Taking terms in the Support naval career is a safe way to rack up a
strong record of service before moving onto a higher career.

Training: You drilled or taught naval cadets, or served as an
officer on board a training vessel.
MedicalYou were a doctor, either on board a ship or at a base
hospital.
Administration: Your job had you tethered to a desk, and
involved a lot of virtual paperwork.

ENGINEERING

A character following this career serves deep in the bowels of a
starship, repairing and maintaining systems and engines. Skilled
naval engineers are highly sought after by private corporations and
traveller crews, as their experience is very valuable.

Damage Control: You were part of a rapid–response damage
control team, fighting fires, rescuing injured crew and getting
weapons back online in the teeth of an incoming barrage.
Electronics: You specialised in the subtle arcanery of circuit and
code.
Mechanics: You specialised in large systems like power plants
and manoeuvre drives.

GUNNERY

While the majority of a ship’s weapons are controlled by computers,
there is still a need for trained human gunners to take over in the
event of a computer failure, or when only near–psychic gut instinct
can shoot down an incoming missile.

Fire Control: You plotted the movements of enemy vessels
and coordinated long–distance barrages from bay weapons or
missile launchers.
Turret: You operated the small guns of a starship. Either sat in a
little bubble of steel and plastic or at a terminal responsible for
vast numbers of weapon.
Countermeasures: You operated a sandcaster or screen, the
last line of defence against incoming fire.

FLIGHT

A character in the Flight career works closely with the bridge crew,
and it is the usual route to command of a starship.

Astrogation: You plotted jumps and guided starships through
the heavens.
Helm: You piloted a starship directly.
Sensors: You were a sensor operator, peering into screens
looking for the telltale flicker of an enemy ship.

PILOT

Pilots operate small craft, such as shuttles and fighters. It is one of
the most hazardous naval assignments, leaving the protection of a
mighty starship to land on dangerous planets or fly through a hail
of fire.

Fighter Pilot: You piloted a small one or two–man combat
craft.
Shuttle Pilot: You piloted a utility vehicle like a shuttle, cutter or
ship’s boat.
Special Operations: You piloted a small craft in support of
marine troops, such as a boarding shuttle or stealth craft.

COMMAND

In this stage of his career, a character is a senior officer on board a
starship, or may even have command of his first starship. This is as
high as Planetary Navy characters can rise – no careers beyond this
one exist for them.

Commander: You commanded a smaller craft such as a patrol
boat, or were executive officer on board a larger starship.
Aide: You served at the right hand of a great captain or
admiral.
Tactician: You were a strategic planner and analyst.

NAVAL INTELLIGENCE

Without faster–than–light communication, knowing when and where
an enemy power will go is an exercise in analysis, prediction and
luck. Naval intelligence characters are spies or tacticians, collating
the reports of agents, scout ships and listening posts to determine
the optimum placement of the Imperium’s fast–response navy and
the defence forces of the subsector navies.

Analyst: You studied and predicted the actions of enemy fleets
or governments.
Planner: You guided the movements of whole navies.
Black Operations: You don’t talk about what you used to do.

NAVAL ENGINEER

A character at this stage of his career is one of the most respected
and skilled technicians in the fleet, and has a significant role in
designing and planning the future course of naval engineering. Only
the Imperial or subsector navies have engineers of this calibre – the
planetary navies make do with outdated designs or retired ships.

Senior Engineer: You were chief engineer at a naval base or on
board one of the mightiest warships in the Imperium.
Ship Architect: You designed and built new starships.
Researcher: You pursued new technologies or reverse–
engineered alien ones.

HIGH COMMAND

Only the best of the best reach this career. A character who has
entered into the High Command career is already a legend and a
hero of the Imperium, a commander whose name will be spoken
of in the same breath as the greatest admirals and conquerors of
the past.

Legendary Captain: You were one of the great tacticians of the
Imperial Navy
Fleet Commander: You commanded trillions of credits worth of
squadrons.
Daredevil: You broke all the rules, but you did what no–one else
could.

SCOUT

CONTACT
As part of the Contact branch you serve in one of the elite teams
responsible for establishing and maintaining contact with new races
or establishing and maintaining contacting with remote, isolated,
forgotten colonies or outposts.
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
First Contact: You served as part of a team responsible for
initiating first contact with either new alien races or rediscovered
colonies and outposts. The role involved months of tentative
observations and negotiations before contact was made, but
when it was, you were knowledgeable and informed.
Diplomacy: You operated as part of the diplomatic teams
representing your home civilisation, preparing the way for the
official diplomatic corps to become involved.
Primary Liaison: Working with the diplomatic corps and the
newly (re)discovered, you acted as the primary go-between as
relations were established and made fruitful. Once relations
were stable, you shifted into the background to form an
essential advisory capacity.

COURIER
You are part of a team handling important communications via both
the xBoat (express boat) routes and the various encryption relays
monitored and administered by the Scout service.
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
xBoat: You serve aboard an xBoat – fast vessels equipped
with state of the art memory storage, encryption and signalling
gear. The xBoats transport information between system-based
distribution points, off-loading their messages, awaiting
response, and then making the return leg.
Ciphers: Based at a Scout way-station or major base, you are
responsible for high-end encryption and decryption, cipher
breaking and code manipulation. The assignment also includes
the translation of new languages, using complex language
translation software.
Communications: Where a message absolutely has to be
delivered personally, the Communications operatives handle
it. Whether carrying physical documents, memory sticks, or
complex data stored in cerebral implants (and retrievable
only with unique, visual, audio and emotional keys), the
Communications specialists can lead risky lives…

EXPLORATION
Your character is part of an explorations team, spending long periods
in space, charting routes, surveying new worlds and systems, and
going boldly where few people have ever gone before.
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
Analysis: Analysis teams specialise in the deep analysis of
systems, worlds and stellar anomalies. Science skills figure highly
in their work.
Pathfinder: Pathfinders specialised in planning, testing
and verifying space lane routes. The role includes a certain
amount of analysis but is focused more on Astrogation and
Navigation.

SPECIAL OPERATIONS
Special Operations is the elite branch of the Scout service, usually
working in covert conditions and in association with services such
as the Army and Navy. It can be highly dangerous work and requires
special tenacity and discretion.
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
Covert Surveillance: You secretly monitor the communications
and movements of a particular target, feeding back information
to other agencies or your superiors.
Espionage: Given a diverse portfolio of missions, it is your job
to spy and uncover secrets.
Deep Cover: Working under a meticulously planned false
identity you are both espionage and surveillance operative, but
are required to spend a great deal of time gaining the absolute
trust of those you spy upon, becoming life them and one of
them.

SURVEY
Once the Exploration branch has completed its high level analysis,
the Survey branch moves in to conduct the detailed and extensive
field study. Survey operatives are trained scientists used to spending
years concentrating on one particular subject.
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
World Analysis: You spend your time either planetside or on
an orbital platform/space station, monitoring what is happening
on the planet itself.
Stellar Analysis: You undertake detailed analysis of an
entire solar system or sub-sector, correlating the results and
extrapolating the findings. Your work is essential to any other
agencies that need to work or pass through the region you are
assigned to study.
Cultural Analysis: You study the heart and soul of new
cultures in great depth, often preceding contact teams and
always following them. Your work is primarily scientific, and
eschews politics and trade, often spending long periods of time
on the ground, perhaps living among your subjects.

AGENT

LAW ENFORCEMENT
You were a uniformed police officer or security guard in a planet’s
law enforcement branch.
Qualification: Int 5+
Patrol: You had a beat on the streets of a city or colony.
Special Operations: You were part of a special weapons and
training unit, using more advanced weapons and equipment
than other officers.
Customs: You worked on a system defence boat or other vessel,
inspecting incoming traffic and looking for smugglers.

INVESTIGATOR
You solved crimes and investigated cases.
Qualification: Int 6+
Private Investigator: Either part of a professional private firm or
a hardboiled gumshoe in the wrong century.
Inspector: You were a plainclothes police detective.
Undercover Agent: You spent time undercover pretending to be
a criminal.

SPY
You worked for a national or planetary government or for the
Imperium, as a secret agent or spy.
Qualification: Int 7+
Field Agent: You were stationed at a bureau or outpost on the
edge of enemy territory.
Operative: You specialised in dangerous operations and blackbag
jobs.
Infiltrator: You were an undercover agent.

ANALYST
You worked for a governmental office as a prized member of their
team.
Qualification: Soc 8+
Political Officer: You served as an attaché to a local politician
during his travels and meetings.
Technical Expert: You were an expert with the assorted gear
needed to keep the political machine running smoothly.
Handler: A polite term for bodyguard, you were hired to protect
a member of your employer’s government.

CORPORATE
You worked for one of the megacorporations, performing an
assortment of tasks laid down by their CEO and board of directors.
Qualification: Int 6+
Security: You worked at one of their corporate holdings to make
sure it was not endangered.
Espionage: You were an active agent used in high-end
commercial sabotage and corporate victimisation.
Bodyguard: You were attached to a high-ranking executive
in the corporation, making sure he was safe throughout his
business dealings.

BOUNTY HUNTER
You worked as a hired freelancer searching out dangerous people
and items across the galaxy for a healthy reward.
Qualification: Int 7+
Ship Tracer: You worked as a galactic tracker of starships for a
fee.
Bondsman: You spent your time hunting down escaped
prisoners and bail jumpers for many galactic slams and Imperial
prisons.
Thieftaker: You worked alongside merchants and merchant
vessels, hauling in criminals for the price on their heads.

BELTER

TO BE INSERTED

SCOUNDREL

INTRUDER
Intruders are specialised high–tech thieves, trained to defeat
security systems and steal especially valuable items. Most are
professionals, hired to complete a specifi c task and work as
part of a small team or on their own. A few are lone operators,
fencing what they steal.
Enlistment: Int 7+
–1 DM for every previous career.
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
Hacker: You wormed your way into computer systems and
stole the most valuable prize of all – information.
Burglar: You were the shape in the shadows, the ghost
that fl its through the corridors without being seen.
Faceman: You smiled and were just so charming that
everyone assumed you belonged there even as you waltzed
in and stole what you needed.

SMUGGLER
You moved goods illegally across borders or even from one
system to another, evading customs patrols and border guards.
Smuggling is discussed from page 72.
Enlistment: Edu 6+
–1 DM for every previous career.
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
Blockade Runner: You served upon a smuggler ship,
avoiding patrols and jumping from system to system.
Bootlegger: You dealt in illegal goods, sneaking them into
worlds where they are banned.
Smuggler Crew: You were part of the crew of a smuggler
vessel.

ORGANISED CRIMINAL
You worked for a crime syndicate, mob family, criminal cult
or other organised institution. Organised crime in Traveller is
discussed from page 34.
Enlistment: End 8+
–1 DM for every previous career.
You must choose an organisation when you enter this
career. Sample organisations are described from page 35.
There may be further restrictions or requirements to join the
organisation.
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
Assassin: You dealt with the syndicate’s enemies and
informants.
Enforcer: You were a street–level foot soldier and thug.
Co–ordinator: You handled the money and the business
side of operations.

PIRATE
You preyed on shipping, attacking merchant ships to steal their
cargo or even the ships themselves. Piracy is discussed from
page 40.
Enlistment: Int 7+
–1 DM for every previous career.
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
Corsair: You were part of the crew of a pirate vessel – a
pilot or gunner.
Boarder: You leaped across the void of space to capture
other ships.
Jumpcusser: You were part of a small, opportunistic armed
merchant ship which occasionally attacked other ships.

SCAVENGER
You survived by picking useable parts from wrecked ships and
ruined colonies. The rise and fall of interstellar empires over
thousands of years means that there are plenty of old ships out
there to be salvaged. For more on scavenging, see Scavengers
from page 126.
Qualifi cation: None.
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
Wrecker: You tore wrecked ships into scrap while in orbit or
scouted the shattered ruins of cities for usable materials.
Salvage Expert: You learned to spot what could be
repaired, turning scrap metal and tangled wire into usable
equipment.
Tomb Robber: You specialised in exploring the ruins of
fallen civilisations – not as an archaeologist but as a thief.

WANDERER
You wandered through the galaxy, looking for employment,
adventure or something you cannot name. A nomad of the
spaceways, you travelled in low berths or cargo holds.
Several events in this career call for a roll on the Odd Jobs table
on page 116.
Qualifi cation: None.
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
Hitchhiker: You came from a good family or had your own
savings and so were able to wander the galaxy for a few
years.
Vagabond: You travelled the galaxy, doing whatever you
could to survive.
Bandit: You were a petty thief or thug.

BARBARIAN
You lived as part of a tribe of primitives on a low–technology
world.
Qualifi cation: Special
You may only take the Barbarian career if you come from a Low
Technology planet or are stranded on such a planet as a result
of a Mishap. See also Lost Worlds on page 132.
If ejected from the Barbarian career, consult your Referee.
He may declare that you have found a way offworld (in which
case you may attempt to qualify for a new career) or that you
must join a new barbarian tribe (in which case you lose your
existing rank and start again at rank 0) or that you must begin
adventuring from this point.
If you suffer an Injury Crisis or Aging Crisis as a barbarian, you
are dead. Barbarians cannot obtain high–tech medical care to
remove the effects of Injuries. Barbarians cannot normally gain
access to anagathics.

Assignments: Choose one of the following:
Warrior: You fought for territory or honour in bloody combat.
Tribesman: You tended animals and tilled the land for the tribe.
Shaman: You guarded the tribe’s secret lore and spoke on behalf of the gods.

MERCHANT

BROKER
You have worked for a marketing brokerage of some type,
buying and selling goods often sight-unseen.
Qualifi cation: Int 6+
License Fee: 5,000 Credits
Assignments:
•Corporate: You hired yourself out to a merchant company
to work their brokerage, earning a steady wage with little
risk.
•Freelancer: You took a tour of several brokerages, working
for anyone who would pay your way and let you fl ex your
market skills.
•Illicits: You brokered for a criminal organisation, applying
your knowledge of how the market works to the world of
drugs, guns and worse.

FREE TRADER
You worked as a member of a trap trader’s crew, putting in on
the work that goes into making a trade run.
Qualifi cation: Int 5+
License Fee: 2,500 Credits
Assignments:
•Offi cer: You were one of the order-givers on the trader
ship.
•Trade Crew: You were one of the wheels in the machine
that kept your trader ship working and running successfully
for a share of the profi ts.
•Tramp Pilot: You piloted the trader ship and most of the
freight lifters to keep the cargo – and profi ts – fl owing.

JUNK DEALER
You worked as the lower class of merchant, dealing in the
‘merchandise’ from salvagers, scrappers and wreck-haulers.
Qualifi cation: Int 4+
License Fee: 500 Credits
Assignments:
•Junker: You were in charge of fi nding, buying and selling
what other people might consider worthless scrap.
•Refurbishing: You spent many long hours turning junk into
sellable items as part of the junker chain of duties.
•Yardwork: You helped the junk merchants organise and
prepare their wares in one of the huge fl oating junkyards in
orbit.

MARKETER
You worked in a specifi c market sector buying and selling
goods of a particular variety, becoming an expert in their
traffi cking.
Qualifi cation: Int 5+
License Fee: 1,000 Credits
Assignments:
•Black Market: You are an expert in the buying and selling
of illegal goods.
•Fence: You have been working with stolen goods and the
thieves that bring them to you.
•General Commerce: You worked in a team of specialists
to create a general market group.

MERCHANT MARINE
You worked on one of the enormous freight and cargo haulers
that help keep intergalactic governments and mega-corporations
running smoothly.
Qualifi cation: Int 5+
License Fee: 10,000 Credits
Assignments:
•Bridge Hand: You served in the decision-making team of
offi cers on the bulk freighter.
•Fleet Hand: You were one of many deckhands on a bulk
freighter.
•Fleet Security: Trained to fi ght like a shipboard soldier,
you protected a bulk freighter from possible boarding
actions.

ROYAL TRADER
You worked as part of a noble family’s fi nancial power structure,
dealing with their enormous fortunes in hopes of generating
even more money for their substantial accounts.
Qualifi cation: Social Standing 8+
License Fee: 25,000 Credits
Assignments:
•Financier: You worked as a broker for a noble family,
trading in nothing short of money itself.
•Purchaser: You were in charge of spending large quantities
of money on behalf of your noble employers on a variety of
goods and services.
•Royal Profi ler: The nobles you worked for trusted your
opinions about market sectors, product information and
general fi nancial data.

SLAVER
You worked as part of a nefarious slaving ring, serving as a
merchant of living beings.
Qualifi cation: Intelligence 6+
License Fee: 2,500 Credits
Assignments:
•Caretaker: Your role on the slaveship was to ensure the
health and safety of the ‘livestock’.
•Fetch: Long hours of seeking out targets – people – to be
picked up and put into the hold was how you spent your years.
•Meatmonger: You worked wherever there was a need
for slaves; peddling the lives of others to anyone with the
money to purchase them.

DILLENTANTE

Aristocrat
Aristocrats are members of the nobility who do not possess an
administrative position or civilians who join the entourages of
a noble in order to gain some status. Aristocrats tend to lack
anything useful to do with their time, mostly because they lack
a work ethic or the bureaucratic skills needed to run a world,
system or sector. To fill their time they instead cater to the
socialising elements of noble life, religiously following etiquette
and traditions handed down from time immemorial.
Qualifications: Soc 6+
If you are aged 34 or more: -2 DM
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
• Courtier: You are a professional sycophant or flunky,
seeking to climb the greasy pole of social status by satisfying
the whims of the nobles you attend, or by being considered
the epitome of good taste and courtly manners. You are
the emissary sent to entertain VIPs or deliver diplomatic
messages. You possess an in-depth knowledge of the
nobility and those seeking influence with the ruling family
come to you for your political advice.
• Chevalier: Distaining the slow dance of political intrigue,
you serve the nobility by acting as a champion. You act
as the representative of whomever engages your loyalties,
stepping into their place to make challenges or fight duels.
You pay special respect towards ladies of the nobility,
defending their reputation against slander or by acting as
an unimpeachable chaperone.
• Paramour: Politics and martial honour mean nothing to
you; only the pursuit of love has any importance. You have
educated yourself in the arts so as to engage the attention
of ladies, whom you fawn over at every opportunity. Your
manners are so refined and rarefied, that others may look
down on you. Yet you care little of their opinion, as long as
your reputation as a lover is held in high esteem.

Adventurer
In a constant struggle to ward off boredom you focus your
inquisitive mind no pursuits which are mentally and physically
stimulating. The hardships and dangers of your chosen interest
help you to feel truly alive. Generally you venture off world to find
new planets and cultures, deadlier creatures to stalk and ancient
cultures to excavate. There is nothing better than smelling a new
alien atmosphere or seeing exotic new life forms. You excel in
spreading your name far and wide, being acknowledged as the
equal of any academic or professional explorer. Living on the
edge of civilisation is better than suffering a meaningless life
socialising.
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
• Explorer: You have an insatiable curiosity to explore new
places, whether it is a slow trek by foot over a mountain
range or boarding a starship jumping into the black,
every trip results in a constant delight and joy with each
unique place you find. Your love of discovery leads you all
over space always trying to discover somewhere no one
has gone before. Your trips are recorded in memoires or
holo-vids, using them to encourage others to follow your
footsteps.
• Hunter: You love the thrill of the stalk, the buzz of aiming
your equipment and the click of the trigger, be it camera,
trap or gun. You have hunted every conceivable creature in
your home system and now voyage to far off places to find
new species to add to your collection. The more arduous
and dangerous the hunt, the more potent your sense of
victory when you succeed. Often you use more primitive
equipment to make the hunt more challenging.
• Archaeologist: You dream of making that lucky strike and
discovering a long lost vault filled with the cultural artefacts,
technology and treasure of an extinct civilisation. Your
desire for credibility and fame sends you off to marginal,
dangerous worlds where normal anthropologists, historians
and archaeologists dare not go. Yet this freedom from
stringent academic supervision allows you to take risks and
shortcuts in your quest for discoveries.

Celebrity
You parlay your natural charisma and talent into a life in
the performing arts. Whether you sing or dance, play an
instrument, act in holo-soaps or merely attend the best
parties, your purpose in life and your livelihood are to
entertain the masses. You may be very high society and
perform for the upper classes or your work may find acclaim
on the gritty streets of industrial worlds but the result is the
same. When you entertain, people become enthralled and
the world adores you.
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
• Actor: Living in the lives of other people is how you perform
for the world. You act and in so doing help others understand
themselves better whilst enthralling them in the power or
cheesiness of your performance. You are an entertainer but
you may take your craft very seriously. Whether you waltz
in and out of roles with ease or obsess on each part until
you become that person, your greatest skill is being anyone
but yourself.
• Musician: Yours is the rhythm of the galaxy. You make
music in some way, be it by instrument or with your voice.
The energy or beauty of your art captivates all who see
your concerts. You may perform solo or with a band but you
live the life your sound creates and your songs touch all
those who hear them.
• Luminary: You are famous and you love it. Millions of
people adore you and follow every aspect of your life;
even though you do nothing except attend high society
functions and date the rich and famous. Exactly why you
are celebrated is as much a mystery to you as it is to your
fans but as long as they never think about that too hard you
get to live the high life.

Competitor
To most people, what you do is just a game. To others it is a job
with rules and demands like any other. Then there are players like
you, people with a superlative skill and a natural sense of grace,
showmanship or killer instinct. You are part of the game within
the game, the competition that is also an exhibition. Your claim to
fame is in how you play both on the field, court or table, and off
it, building a cult of personality around yourself and ensuring that
when people think of your sport, they think of you as well.
Qualifications: Str or Int 6+
–1 DM for every previous career.
If you are aged 34 or more: –2 DM
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
• Sportsman: You play on a team with others. You might lead
or you may follow but you always shine as a star in your own
right. When your team is working together, covering each
other’s weaknesses and enhancing each other’s strengths,
you are an unstoppable force on the field.
• Athlete: You are an individual competitor and your chosen
sport is physically and mentally demanding. You have to
be in top physical shape and lacking the support of a team,
you must be completely self sufficient. You are a lone star
and you like it that way. When you win, the whole victory
is yours to savour. When you lose, there is no one else to
blame for the defeat.
• Gamer: There is nothing physical about what you do but
it still comes with its own rigours and challenges. You may
be a gambler or a combatant in virtual space, your battles
played out in digital time. You excel in mental agility and
the mastery of tactics and strategy. Societies are formed
around your game, entire social kingdoms ripe for the ruling.
Whether on a screen or at a table, the world is winner takes
all.

Connoisseur
As a connoisseur you savour, collect and create lasting art
in some form. You may be someone who produces the finest
artistic creations such as a chef, interior decorator or odour
designer. On the other hand you might be somebody who
critiques art in all its forms, creating witty poems, news columns
or public speeches to crush those of less refined tastes than
yours. Or perhaps you collect the finest art, hording it away as a
financial investment or displaying it in your own museums and
galleries. No matter what you do, you focus on your chosen art
form and what you do with it becomes part of your legacy.
Qualification: Edu 7+
–1 DM for every previous career.
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
• Critic: Whether it is by holographic media or old-fashioned
quill and ink, your skills lie in the appraisal, judgement and
possible aspersion of a particular art form. Your words often
amuse, shock or inspire those who delight in your refined or
egocentric opinions.
• Artisan: Yours is the sensual realm of art. You use materials,
tools and technology to create enduring icons and artwork.
You design, sculpt, experiment or program but regardless
of what you do, your work is as artistic as it is functional if
not more so. You are more than just a craftsman. You are
a true artisan and your work has value beyond the sum of
its parts.
• Collector: While you may not be criticising or creating,
no artwork would be preserved for posterity or placed
on public display without your tireless efforts. You travel
tirelessly to locate lost objet d’art or locate new artists
worthy of being immortalised in your personal galleries. In
some way or another, legally or not, you must complete
your collections.

Dilettante
You are rich beyond the dreams of even the most avaricious
and use your wealth in creative ways depending on your outlook
on life. Whether you consume it to satisfy your selfish desires,
splurge it on lavish entertainments for your friends or give it
away to help those worse off than yourself, it is all about the
money and the fame you gain from spending it. Your lifestyle
draws sycophants, adoring fawners and idolisers who only want
to get a cut of the cash which flows from your uncaring fingers.
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
• Wastrel: You are a drop out from polite society. You care
little for others, merely desiring to experience the pleasures
of living life to the full, stopping at nothing to find a new
method of self gratification. You have few real friends and
your family has turned its back on you. Whether you are
terminally bored or driven by self loathing, you are in a
slow spiral of self destruction and quite frankly, cannot care
less.
• Socialite: You live for the glitz and excitement of being
the centre of attention. The best way of achieving this is to
throw and attend the best social functions on the planet.
Your wealth is frittered away on sumptuous amusements
for the high society set, in a constant battle to be regarded
as the heart of good taste and haut couture. You are the
trend setter that others follow adoringly.
• Philanthropist: You use your wealth to help others,
whether to salve a bad conscience or as a way of seeking
more public attention, only you know. Whatever your
motivation, the media slavishly praise or ridicule the grand,
optimistic plans you organise with governments and charity
organisations and you play them all like a fine instrument.
Your inspiration and efforts have aided the lives of millions
and in return you are worshipped as a saint.

Humanitarian
Coming from a life of privilege, you have discovered the
inequalities of civilisation. Taking upon yourself the role of
a humanitarian, your motives are to investigate, inform and
educate the higher echelons of society, improving the prospects
of the common people. You chronicle the injustices of the
galaxy, bringing them into the hearts and lives of your audience
in the form of protests, conventions, after dinner speeches, or
even interviews on the local media. While some humanitarians
simply publicise disasters or corruption, others actively work
to negotiate with governments and megacorporations to solve
these problems. Forsaking more violent options, humanitarians
use their Social Standing and skills to sway opinions and incite
the masses.
Assignments: Choose one of the following:
• Idealist: You live your life in front of a camera, out in
the open on the front lines of wars and poverty ridden
slums. Your popularity is based on your unimpeachable
morals and outspoken convictions. Everyone knows
your name and face, as you are reported frequently
on the news for passionate acts of often near suicidal
intervention.
• Raconteur: Whereas idealists work upon the hearts of
common folk, you target your efforts to influencing the
minds of those in authority. Every crisis or unjust law
spawns suffering and need, which you present in the
form of entertaining anecdotes or ethical questions in
order to effect a change in the minds of the powerful. It is
your wit and persuasive personality which encourages
indulged listeners to invite you to their gatherings or
act as an intermediary.
• Investigator: Your life is spent investigating felony and
injustice. You survey crime scene clues and interrogate
suspects, using your high social status as a substitute
for authority. You are driven with a need to keep your
mind active and protect the underprivileged, be they
individuals or communities. You are almost always
in danger and your work may not be appreciated by
some but you do what professional law enforcement
would never undertake, whether from corruption or
simple lack of resources.

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Traveller: Introduction
Space...is big...really big!

Introduction to TRAVELLER

Hi, gang

After much deliberation, and weighing in varying likes and dislikes about games systems, genres and so forth, I’ve decided that I’ll take a shot with a sci-fi game based on the award winning TRAVELLER setting. Don’t worry about if you don’t know the setting, because we’ve seen many examples on the small and big screen, and probably read many an interesting tale with it’s feel. That’s where it’s kinda hard to pin down because there are so many aspects to the Trav universe, but I’ll try and break it down.

First, Trav is about adventure. It’s about being independent players. It’s about making money and plying a trade. It’s about lawless frontier worlds and huge interstellar empires. It’s about nobility and politics. It’s about taking a zeppelin airship to a starport. It’s about random cargo inspections and space pirates. It’s about bar room fights and orbital engagements. It’s about super advanced alien artifacts and quirky starship breakdowns. It’s about running away from a tribe of barbarians with stone axes because your laser pistol fried in the humid environment. Sounds like it can go anywhere, and it can. Where exactly is up to you guys.

You wanna know what it looks like? Well, I can tell you from reading the material that there are a lot of sources you can get inspiration from. ALIEN & ALIENS is like Trav with the space marines, mega corps, terraforming planets, and weird dangerous alien lifeforms. PITCH BLACK resembles Trav with the premise of a passenger ship traveling thru the remotest backroad of space only to find that something goes wrong. STAR WARS has a few elements with the smuggler, bounty hunter, tramp freighter and al the traveling. But I think the most recent example that closely resembles Trav would be FIREFLY/SERENITY.

The “classic” Trav game involves a crew of a star truck OR scout survey vessel. They could be mercs, brigands, scouts, traders, or running a passenger line. Most important is that they are independent. They are for hire or contracted. There is an Empire called The Imperium, which is the law of all Charted Space. There are other equally big players out there, but Humanity is definitely out there. The crew and ship of SERENITY would fit nicely in the background of Trav. The captain/owner, the first officer, the pilot/navigator, the doctor, the engineer, the soldier/security guy. Even the psycho psychic and the preacher fit in (but for my game, the psycho psychic may not be available, and I’ll tell you why later). Their exploits also follow much that is in the Trav universe: salvaging, cargo running, passengers, trade speculation, profiteering, etc. The Federation could be thought of as the Imperium after a fashion, but there are some subtle differences. The tech lvl is about right, with the closer you are to Imperial space, the more lasers become involved. Out there in the backwater areas, it’s all slugthrowers and swords. But adventure, danger, excitement, and intrigue await behind every ordinary “job” that comes your way.

Now, my game isn’t gonna be FIREFLY with the Western motif and music, but the feel will be there. Now what you guys are gonna be eventually is all up to you, but you have to meet this criteria:

1) You all know each other somehow.
2) You will all be aboard ONE spaceship.
3) The ship will need upkeep, provided by you (the crew).
4) Be prepared for the possibility of playing an extra character, and don’t treat it like extra fodder, a redshirt, or a human shield.

With that, here is a small list of game scenarios that I’m tossing around regarding your characters:

1) Free Trader – you guys are a crew aboard a merchant vessel plying the tradeways OR running passengers from here to there
2) Scout Service – you guys are a survey team exploring new territories OR updating old survey routes
3) Star Mercs – you guys are ex-military offering your services to a wide array of clients
4) Travellers – you guys are just competent adventurers running around the stars finding adventure in every starport

I’m OK with doing any of these, but I’m most comfortable with the Free Traders concept. In actuality, any of the above can be molded to fit whatever desire comes to our minds, but at least we’ll have a starting concept.

The following chapters provide a reference of material to be acquainted with.

I. The Traveller Universe

Long ago, a race known only as The Ancients seeded mankind (and possibly all intelligent life) all over Charted Space. The only thing we know about them is they were seemingly wiped out in a cataclysmic war over 300 thousand years ago, and the only evidence comes up as ancient relics or ruins on distant planets. Among the varying races, 3 species of human beings would eventually rise to dominate most of Charted Space. Known collectively as Humani, they are known as the Zhodani, the Vilani and the Solomani (the humans from Earth are the Solomani, named after the Sol system they originated on). The first race to start colonizing the stars was the Vilani. By the time they developed the Jump Drive, the Solomani calendar on Terra was 4715 BC. By the time Terrans landed on the moon, the Vilani were already over 1700 years into the formation of the First Imperium, governing most of charted space. There were vast empires in other corners of Charted Space. By this time, however, expansion of the 1st Imperium ground down to a halt. No one knows why, but the Imperium started growing stagnant and took to isolating itself from the rest of the interstellar community. Solomani discovered their Jump Drive by 2089 AD, and discovered the aging Vilani Imperium only a decade later. In 2112 AD, the Solomani took advantage of the falling Imperium and so started the First Interstellar War. By 2316, the Solomani were triumphant and established themselves as the new rulers of the Second Imperium of Charted Space. The Vilani were integrated and soon the two races were a mixed culture, but strong Vilani and Solomani heritages remained intact.

However, the decay that befell the Vilani was too great for the Solomani to repair, and the 2nd Imperium collapsed into what was to be called, The Long Night. “Nightfall” began somewhere around 2745 AD and lasted about 1700 years. Throughout this time mini-empires rose and fell, interstellar travel was non-existent, and a “Dark Age” fell across all Charted Space. It wasn’t instantaneous, but eventually Humaniti rose again from the ashes and established the 3rd Imperium. The new Imperial Calendar started at Year 0 (4520 AD Solomani Time) and has so far lasted for almost a millennium (we are currently at Year 993 3rd Imperial Calendar).

NOTE on the Zhodani: As stated before, the Ancients seeded many human and non-human lifeforms all over the galaxy. The Zhodani are one such race of humans. The Zhodani’s empire is just as vast as the current Imperium, however the 2 races are at a state of conflict. Part of this reason is the Zhodani’s open use and acceptance of psionics. Although psionics is not unheard of, it is outlawed and banned within the Imperium and Solomani space. Because of the vast distances in space, both empires are virtually isolated from each other and no contact has been continued for quite some time, and therefore will be omitted from these pages.

II. Space…the Final Frontier

As Douglas Adams once said, “Space is big…really big!” No truer words can be spoken about the vastness of space especially in T20. Just to start you off to the concept, the area known as Charted Space is but a small spec of the Milky Way Galaxy. Just ONE Galaxy in the countless galaxies in the known universe. To give you a sense of scale, if the entire Milky Way were the size of a 12” Vinyl record (you do remember what those are right?), Charted Space would take up an Eighth Inch Square box on the farthest edge of the record. That’s just for starters. Let’s take a closer look at how Charted Space is charted

First, there are the star systems, like our own Sol System. One sun, 9 planets and many more moons and assorted rocks. That system fits onto one Hex of a zone known as a Subsector. A Subsector is a grid of space 8 hexes wide and 10 hexes long.

Inside each box resides ONE star system and its planets/rocks/whatever. Some boxes are just empty space. Each box represents ONE Parsec, which an area of space 3.26 Lightyears in diameter. A Subsector map like this is just one part of a bigger map known as a Sector. A Sector map comprises 16 Subsectors.

A Sector Map like this is probably the biggest area of travel anyone would be able to claim in a lifetime. It would take weeks, even months to cover one end to the other. And it’s about to get bigger. The empires of Charted Space make up varying Sectors like this one. Some empires have more than others, based on their sphere of influence.

A Parsec contains ONE system
There are roughly 80 Parsecs in a Subsector
There are 16 Subsectors in a Sector (1280 Parsecs)
And there are 128 Known Sectors in Charted Space (over 163,000 Parsecs)
All this takes up an eighth inch square on a 12 inch disc, comprising our Milky Way Galaxy.

Of course, this game doesn’t take into account that space is 3D, so realistically this plane could be layered up or down many times, each representing a level of charted space. However, the system presented here represents a level of playability that doesn’t threaten to overwhelm logistics. In other words, it’s just enuff for good gameplay!

III. Travel in the Traveller Universe

Now that we know how big the T20 setting is, let’s take a look at how it is getting around. Let’s start with the Jump Drive. This is the only way to cross the vast interstellar distances in a decent amount of time. A starship’s Jump Drive rating equals the amount of parsecs it can cross in ONE jump, taking about a week to do so. However, unless it has sufficient fuel, it must be able to end its journey at another system containing refueling facilities or a gas giant, so it can refuel and continue its journey. So as you can see, it would take a Jump-1 capable vessel about 8 weeks, or 2 months to cross just the top border of 8 parsecs on a SubSector map, provided there is a suitable star system on each and every hex. If not, the journey would longer as you’d have to go thru safe routes of passage. And if it takes that long to cross a Subsector, imagine a Sector or even trying to cross from one side of the Imperium to reach the Aslan Heirate, for example.

Jump Drives are rated 1 thru 6 (6 being the fastest). Most ships have ratings of 1 or 2, 3 or more being extremely expensive and restricted to military vessels and megacorps. Your ship would most likely have a 1 or 2 rating, but thru adventuring and modification, it’s possible to upgrade (more on that later). No matter what the rating, a Jump takes a week to complete. That is if a Jump-6 ship just needed to cross one parsec, it would still take a week. Mostly, a ship making some kinda run would spend about 2 weeks before heading back out. One week in Jump Space (or more if the journey is longer), and one week planetside unloading cargo, refueling, looking for another run, and then it’s back into space for another 2 or more weeks.

[More to be added…]

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Traveller: Forbidden Tech
"What can I get for ya?"

For the most part, all tech at TL’s 11 and lower are available as described in the Traveller Core Book and the Central Supply Catalog. However, some items regardless of their TL may or may not be available in order to drive the narrative of my game.

The following tech is NOT available in my Traveller Universe, regardless of tech level

Anti-Armor Flail
Grav Mace

Chaindrive Axe
Improved Static Axe
Arc Field Axe

Sonic Spear
Psi Spike

Laser Stilleto
Chaindrive Sword
Improved Static Sword
Arc Field Sword
Psi Cutlass
Psi Dagger

Chaindrive Gauntlet
Arc Field Claw

Gravitic Buckler
Handshields
Repulsor Shield

Nerual Field Dampening Ammo

Holographic Sights
Smart Tracker
Psi-Enhanced Targeter

Intelligent Weapon

Spurt Gun

NO GAUSS WEAPONS

NO LASER WEAPONS except
- Rifle, Laser, Adv
- Support Weapon, Laser
o Each at 10 times normal cost; unavailable for Mustering Benefits

Gauss Flamer
Cryo Rifle
Plasma Jet, Improved

NO HIGH ENERGY WEAPONS

Splinter Pistol, Carbine or Rifle

Neural Weapon, Telepathic
Neural Rifle
Matter Disintegrator
Neural Pistol
Matter Disintegrator, Improved

Plasma Core
Fusion Block
Neutrino Detonator

Wrist-mounted Warhead Launcher
Disposable Launcher, Plasma

Plasma A Gun
Plasma B Gun
Plasma C Gun
Fusion X Gun
Fusion Y Gun
Battlefield Meson Accelerator

Ceramic & Advanced Poly Carapace Armors available at twice normal cost (not available as Benefit)

Dispersion, Conduit-Bleed & Nerual Sheath Anti-Laser Suits

ANY TL 12+ UNPOWERED SUIT

ANY TL 12+ POWERED ARMOR SUIT

NO BATTLE DRESS except Basic & Advanced

NO BATTLE DRESS WEAPONS except the Man-Portable Mount

ALL BATTLE DRESS OPTIONS ARE AVAILABLE except
- Artificial Psionic Shield Helmet
- Grav Assist
- Gyro-Stabilizer Rig, Advanced
- Null Shield

Thrust Pack, Advanced

Fusion Stile
Rope, Advanced
Ring Laser
Rope, Infinite
Battery, Antimatter

Chameleon Fibers
Null Shielding Shelters
Psi Ampllifier Shelters
Holosimulacrum Shelters

Auto Doc is available but extremely expensive

Starlight Drops
Anagathics
Null Drugs

NO TL 12+ Radio or Laser Transceivers

TL 12 Tactical Relay Network is available at 1500 creds per squad member

Translator
Satellit Launcher, Field
Forensic Sweeper
Nuclear Dampers
Neural Activity Detector
Bioscanner
Advanced Bug Detector
Compact Densitometer
Improved Neural Activity Detector
Psi Scanner
TL 12 & 15 Helmet Reader Options

Psi-Linkage Reciever

ANY TL 12 Computer Software Available at 10 TIMES Cost

ALL ROBOTS available but highly restricted

ALL PERSONAL AUGMENTS available
- Consult with GM at TL 12+ as to availability, restrictiveness and cost

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