Thursday, September 19, 2013

Local Specialties I, Campaign Update

Because my campaign setting is still so small (there are fewer than 20 known systems), it's still feasible for me to give every named system its own feel. One of the ways I'm doing that is by giving different planets their own local specialty goods, things that are only available from there.  I don't have one for every system yet, but I hope to eventually.  Frankly, I'm having a much easier time coming up with local specialties for TL4 cultures.  It's tough to come up with something for lower-tech societies that can't be trivially produced at higher TLs.

The following are the Local Specialties I have so far.

1. As mentioned in prior posts, the Nyx Cluster makes the best anagathics available, by far.

2. Wolf is the home of Spacekea.  They make prefabricated structures and colonization supplies.  You can get a modular, lightly fortified manor house packed up into thirty tons of cargo space, for example.  It comes complete with everything but food.  They make even larger prefabricated facilities available by special order.  They also make low-maintenance fusion plants and similar supplies.

3. Anumati is the cyberpunk planet.  They make mass quantities of cybernetics (an expensive type of medical supply) and also the best personal entertainment products.  If you travel there personally, the cost to install cybernetics is much less.  They also produce a special cybernetic item, the Gibson Interface.  This is a port in the user's skull that allows them to interface directly with a computer, and enter a VR interface useful for hacking.

4. Inari is a world that is for cultural reasons almost entirely vegetarian. They make fantastic hydroponics equipment, and their biggest export is the Laughing Buddha Modular Hydroponic Farm. It weighs only 20 tons when packed, and when installed it can provide food, purified water, and air for up to 300 people indefinitely. It's expensive, at 100,000 credits, but easy to maintain and incredibly reliable.

5. Towers is a corrupt shit-hole of a world. For that reason, it has produced a brutal signature weapon.

Balrog Laser Pistol: This is a bulky, inaccurate laser weapon preferred by thugs and degenerates all across Towers. It has a range of 50/100, deals 2d4 damage and takes two Type A energy cells. It has a magazine of 12 and is capable of burst fire. Like all energy weapons, it is +1 to hit.  600cr.

Towers is also preparing to start producing a mass-market heavy fighter craft intended to challenge the military supremacy of State technology.

6. Tenebrous is only partially colonized, but they are TL4.  The local product is a crude, extremely unsafe vehicle called a Gravpogo.  The Gravpogo is a single-passenger vehicle that looks something like a cross between a hovercycle and a pogo stick.  A user with no skill can operate a Gravpogo, but it does use the Vehicle/Grav skill if checks are necessary.  

Gravpogo: Speed 1, Armor 1, HP 5.  Alternately, the GM can treat a gravpogo like a piece of worn equipment.  In that case, any hit that reduces the pilot below 10HP disables the gravpogo immediately.  The gravpogo's advantages are thus: It weighs only 125 kilos, and eight of them can be carried in one ton of cargo space.  It can take off and land from essentially anywhere, and is small enough to lean in the corner of a bar.    They can fly to essentially any height that a normal aircraft can reach, although you take your life in your hands if you do so.  They are cheap, at only 1,000 credits apiece.  The user should be advised that the gravpogo has no electronics beyond a utility light welded onto the front as a headlamp.  They don't need a key to start and can be stolen casually.  They do not have map software, GPS, a compass, a speedometer or altimeter.  There is a warning light that flashes when you only have five minutes or so of power left rather than a gauge.

Campaign Update

The PCs have chosen to investigate a floating city.  The city is an ovoid, 60 kilometers across the long axis and 40 kilometers across the short.  There has been no sign of intelligent habitation, but the internal biosphere is active and compatible so far with human life, and automated landing control guided their ship in and opened the airlock doors for them.  So far, they have borrowed a local hovercraft to travel around inside the dome.  It's a huge expanse of water with large islands scattered through it. During their journey to the largest island, they were attacked by bio-engineered armored shark-beasts.  The PCs were unscathed, but the monsters took a few bites out of the hovercraft.  It is now deemed inadvisable for them to attempt to return to the ship without finding a way to ensure with certainty that the hovercraft is not eaten out from under them hundreds of yards away from the shore.  

Rook, the AI henchwoman, is still manning the ship, and is in radio and video contact with the party.  As of right now, the PCs are going to explore the interior of the island.  I have informed the players that they need to begin tracking of grenades, ammunition, power cells, and rations.

Things could get interesting.

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