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
1d6 Table Selection 1-3 Use table from Core rules 4-6 Use 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)
d66 Patron Criminal 11 Koga Clan Assassin 12 Loko Procurement Professional 13 Holy Crusader of the Moldandan Universal Church 14 Sadyra Syndicate Embezzler 15 Mudhavan Privateer 16 Brother of Sakari Local Leader 21 Outpost Director 22 Settlement Administrator 23 Colonial Governor 24 System Overlord 25 Jengu Medical Technician 26 Tribal Leader High Society 31 Litha League Diplomatic Corp Representative 32 Ksitigarbha Institute Regional Research Director 33 University of Sutekh Professor 34 Factor of Malsumis Agent 35 Koyane Clan Daimyo 36 Five Families Security Director Commercial 41 TransStar Interstellar Transport Captain 42 Lutasas Trade Union (LTU) Trader 43 Clan Emishi Trade Broker 44 Five Families Executive Officer 45 Sukesh Trade Alliance Representative 46 Interstellar Bank of Abrakos (IBA) Financial Advisor Spacer 51 Rastrine Deep Space Prospector 52 Ksitigarbha Institute Field Archivist 53 Star Emperor's Navy Commander 54 Explorer's Society Sanctioned Pilot 55 Haligani Star Raider 56 Star Admiral Mahmoud Pasha's Navy Officer Unusual 61 Thulian Pilgrim 62 Koyane Shogunate Imperial Guard 63 Tajimamori Researcher 64 Asuran Bounty Hunter 65 Avalon Commonwealth Merchant 66 Heremod 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.