Monday, February 04, 2013

Traveller Sandbox Game Mechanics: Random Encounters, Beta Quadrant...

Good Afternoon, All:

Before we dive into Random Encounter Tables for the Traveller Sandbox Experiment, I just wanted to take a moment to honor this as the 550th post of this blog. Given the average lifespan of gaming blogs, I take a small amount of personal pride in the fact that I've kept this going so long. Yes, I've faltered a few times over the years, but so far, I've always pulled myself back up and go back to writing. My thanks to those readers who have read and enjoyed the posts here. Honestly, it's the thought that you might find value in this sharing that drives my posting.

When I talk about Random Encounter Tables, I honestly tend to think specifically of the Random Patron Table on pg 81 of the Traveller core rulebook. The rest of the tables can remain, as they generate a classic Traveller experience, which I think is vital to the flavor of the rules. When deciding which table to use for determining random patrons, I would roll 1d6, and on a 4-6, I'd use the campaign-specific table, while on 1-3, I'd use the ones out of the book. That way, we get a nice mix of classic adventures and those specifically tailored to the setting, and we're not shoving the setting down the players' throats. You can adjust this to better fit your specific desires, if you wish.

Table: Setting Vs Core Table Selection
1d6Table Selection
1-3Use table from Core rules
4-6Use table from Beta Quadrant setting

In terms of content, you could design tables for each subsector, if you wanted to do that. While I might consider that over the long haul, I'd prefer to start with just a single table encompassing the setting. The Patron table is broken down in the core rules by specific categories, so I'll probably follow that same pattern as I make my selections for the setting table, too. Below are my thoughts on the Patron table:

Table: Random Patron Table (Beta Quadrant)
11Koga Clan Assassin
12Loko Procurement Professional
13Holy Crusader of the Moldandan Universal Church
14Sadyra Syndicate Embezzler
15Mudhavan Privateer
16Brother of Sakari
Local Leader
21Outpost Director
22Settlement Administrator
23Colonial Governor
24System Overlord
25Jengu Medical Technician
26Tribal Leader
High Society
31Litha League Diplomatic Corp Representative
32Ksitigarbha Institute Regional Research Director
33University of Sutekh Professor
34Factor of Malsumis Agent
35Koyane Clan Daimyo
36Five Families Security Director
41TransStar Interstellar Transport Captain
42Lutasas Trade Union (LTU) Trader
43Clan Emishi Trade Broker
44Five Families Executive Officer
45Sukesh Trade Alliance Representative
46Interstellar Bank of Abrakos (IBA) Financial Advisor
51Rastrine Deep Space Prospector
52Ksitigarbha Institute Field Archivist
53Star Emperor's Navy Commander
54Explorer's Society Sanctioned Pilot
55Haligani Star Raider
56Star Admiral Mahmoud Pasha's Navy Officer
61Thulian Pilgrim
62Koyane Shogunate Imperial Guard
63Tajimamori Researcher
64Asuran Bounty Hunter
65Avalon Commonwealth Merchant
66Heremod Unity Agent

I hope the above helps to stimulate setting-based adventure ideas in your head. I find them to be particularly inspiring for getting things into a Beta Quadrant mood, as it were. If I don't feel a particular entry is appropriate for the area, then I can always look at the original Patron table in the core rulebook, and go with that result instead.

With that done, I turn my eyes toward the next goal: a Beta Quadrant Rumor Table. Next time, I'll discuss thirty-six rumors that can fuel a campaign in the setting I've created here as part of my Traveller Sandbox Experiment.


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