Sunday, 3 July 2011

Space Encounter 2 - Ice (The Dreizick)

The Multipurpose Klinsman Corporation Submersible V.3 - The Dreizick (pictured in beta testing on Ersten Mond) 
Designing an economic, high-performance submersible for exploration of terran compatible worlds (and other liquid-water rich environments) has been a strategic goal of Klinsman Corp since the successful mineral exploitation of the Fiddler's Well and its satellites.

Assuming manufacturing costs follow model at mass fabrication stage, we can report that that goal has been achieved.

The Dreizick series is the result of a three year, multi billion TCC R&D project. With a maximum speed of over 200 knots and a theoretical operational depth of over 40,000 feet the Dreizick is the first commercial application of the Nervensystematik interface in a none stellar craft.

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Space Encounter 2 - Ice

The ice moon of Shem Tov, in orbit around the lifeless, volcanic world of C-Matsuo is composed almost completely of water with a thick layer of water ice covering its surface. The moon is on the fringes of what is considered a habitable world without additional terraforming.

Formerly designated C-Matsuo-2, the moon was bought wholesale from the Kyuso corporation by a Neo-Zyonist sect and renamed Shem Tov meaning 'Good (or Holy) Name (or Gate)', the moon has become home to a self sufficient corporation/society governed on Hasidic principles and Kabbalah law.

Built in a "warm" equatorial region, the settlement of Shem Tov is surrounded by thousands of acres of undersea farmland and enjoys limited trade with a relatively nearby Kyuso corporation colony, exporting huge quantities of mineral oil and a small sum of the native delicacies; kelp wine, cured marine isopod, saltwater citrus flower and Behemothasaur meat.

The oil is mined thousands of miles from the settlement by a single 'crawler' a 22 birth, tracked submersible vessel that both prospects and drills for mineral oil in months long sorties away from the settlement. The crawler is of significant monetary value and represents 90% of the liquid, material wealth of the colony.

It has been missing for 4 months and the Colony's Religious leader and CEO, Rabbi Meyer Weiss Ph.D. Has issued an open salvage contract for its location and return.

Space Encounter 2 - Ice. (teaser and other news)

The ice moon of Shem Tov
Work on the second Dread 'Space' encounter proceeds apace, I'm taking my time and trying to make it very different from the previous one and, so far, it's pretty original for a sci-fi horror story. At least in premise, let's hope I can translate that to compelling play.

I think I struck lucky with my setting last time, it was extremely easy to contain play without railroading the players and I had a couple of tension raising device I could employ at any time. This one is, as I say, very different but I've taken onboard feedback from my last session and have a couple of tricks planned.

Hopefully, as well as returning players, I might have a couple of newbies aboard. Which will be fun.

In other news, I'm rewriting my 'Drill' plan as a campaign doc that other people can use, and once I work out how to, hosting it as a PDF here. It's taking a little longer than I expected.
Also, I'm putting together a playlist of atmospheric tracks to play as background music if you have Spotify, you can see the list here.

Monday, 24 January 2011

Game no. 1 - Drill

Engineer Wallace Darville Montag ponders his fate
Sunday 23rd January, 2311AD, six souls; four crew, two passengers, embarked on a venture to salvage the Klinsman-Noble gas mining platform.

Forty Eight hours later, five souls remained with a cuts, fractures and a tale to chill your bones.

The first attempt at my Dread experiment was a modest success, the scenario I'd written presented no obvious holes and held its narrative structure, the players were engaged, the tower rocked and fell.

I've learned a few things and will be utilizing them in another adventure shortly.

Session report to follow.

Monday, 15 November 2010

Space Encounter 1 - Drill

Approach to Noble-3
Klinsman-Noble is a 'Drill', a Klinsman Corporation mining platform stationed in low orbit around Noble-3, a gas giant of rich chemical composition.

Resembling a misshapen corkscrew; the Kinsman-Noble is comprised of a broadly cylindrical command module trailing an 8 kilometer pylon.

As well as providing the living area of the 'Drill', the the pressurised, oxygen-filled command module affords the the facility neutral buoyancy in the sea of heavy gases. 8 Kilometers below, the pylon 'tip' houses a state of the art chemical processing factory.

The factory collects and processes gasses into refined chemicals before loading them on to internally manufactured skiffs and launching them via the factory 'gun', up the pylon into a holding orbit around Noble 3 (for later collection and transport).

Housing an average compliment 41 crew, the Kinsman-Noble is state of the art it has an estimated working life of 50 years.

Or had.

2 years ago it disappeared. The 'gun', stopped firing, transmission ceased, and the whole rig sunk beneath the volatile, gaseous surface. Untraceable.

Now it's back. A single, looped, transmission heralding it's arrival. The 'gun' isn't firing and comms haven't been reestablished.

Klinsman Corporation protocol dictates a salvage team be dispatched to perform rescue and asses/resolve platform integrity.

Sunday, 14 November 2010

Habitable Planets

Despite centuries of theory, conjecture and fiction on the subject, nothing prepared us for other worlds, and life on other worlds, to be so familiar.

Many planets (estimated at 1 per 10,000 solar systems) exist within the narrow band of temperature, gravity and atmospheric composition that allows Earth evolved life to thrive. And although undeniably strange, exobiology on these worlds bares striking similarity to what we know.

Oceans of water, plant-life with roots and photosynthetic leaves, herbivorous creatures that graze, carnivorous creatures that hunt. Soil, seeds, eggs, eyes, wings, Life as we've always known it.

Gburrek's World .Equatorial Jungle Isopod. 95cm Long. Harmless.
We can eat the fruit here, we can grow wheat and barley and maize, rear cattle. It's remarkable.

Testing has revealed common genetic markers on many worlds, evidence of a root biological ancestry. Although it hasn't been observed, many scientists support the theory that all worlds were 'seeded' by comets. Fewer believe this is undeniable evidence of the existence of God.

But in all our exploration, colonization and cataloguing of new life we have yet to find a planet with anything approaching the biodiversity of Earth, yet to find an alien organism with anything like human intelligence. Yet to find anything that could challenge the fierce colonial ambition of humanity.


Thursday, 11 November 2010

Corporations - The Employers

You load sixteen tons, what do you get
Another day older and deeper in debt
Saint Peter don't you call me 'cause I can't go
I owe my soul to the company store

In 2310 the word government doesn't mean that much, the word Corporation does.

By the mid 21st century, when space flight became economical; none-governmental space travel bloomed, when it was proven to be profitable, space exploration exploded.

It was the big Corporations that pioneered interstellar travel, developed the technology to exploit the mineral and chemical wealth of the cosmos and eventually colonized new worlds. Soon the terrestrial economy, and traditional government became obsolete.

Life on a Corporation world is much like living in a religious or deeply political dictatorship of 21st century earth, the beliefs of a distant CEO reflected in every facet of life.

Company Protocol is law, some govern how you live, others govern how you work, some Corp's even govern what you believe.

Almost everyone works for a Corp, rents Corp property, earns corp money and spends it in Corp shops. Everyone is free, but everyone is beholden to company whose hospital they were born in.

Salvers, historically, are free agents. Risking extremely perilous conditions to pay company debts and live their own life outside the grip of any given Corporation.

NEXT: Habitable Planets