Thursday, July 17, 2008

Getting started

Further pursuant to yesterday's post...

Okay, so I'm getting started on my Traveller/Freedom in the Galaxy game. The GDW resources I have are:

* the Original Traveller three-book set,
* Supplement Four: Citizens of the Imperium, and
* Alien Module One: Aslan.

(I am awaiting a copy of The Traveller Book from Amazon; God knows what happened to my old copy.)

In addition, I have the boxed set of Freedom in the Galaxy, from SPI. (I could have gotten the Avalon Hill edition, but I'm just as happy with the original.)

I also have some supplementary material created by other fans that I found on boardgamegeek.

As is usual with SPI games (and wargames in general), there is a wealth of information in there. I just need to coax it out into the light so I can convert it into Traveller terms.

Really, all I need to do is:

* convert the planets,
* write up the characters, to use as pre-gens,
* convert the alien races, for those players who insist on creating their own characters,
* convert the spaceships,
* write up the "possessions" as special equipment (and one of the variants has possessions for the Imperials...), and
* modify the "mission" system inherent in the rules into an adventure generator, so that I can streamline production of individual adventures.

I have the feeling that I would actually run this as an episodic "tv series", rather than as scenes in a movie. Each "mission" would be an episode would be a play session. (This would also allow for players who couldn't make every session, a not inconsiderable factor these days.)

It's starting to look overwhelming, so I'm starting with the Kayns. These are doglike beings, who only have four worlds.

Oh, hey, speaking of worlds, this project will also be cool because of the way the map is laid out. There are 25 stars but 51 worlds, so some stars have more than one world (1-3, averaging almost exactly 2). This allows me to use the space travel rules (as opposed to the star travel rules) of the game. (Those equations impressed the hell out of me when I first read them, back in the early 80's...)

Anyway, so I may not be able to get something done this month, but I'm sure gonna try!


Alexis Smolensk said...

If you must have "missions" and you want more ideas, ones that will work well with traveller, investigate an old game called "Top Secret."

Will Douglas said...

Yeah, I have Top Secret and I like the mission matrix they have therein. I'm going to try to duplicate that (or copy it, whatever...) for this. (I've always especially loved the "Withheld Information" part of that...!)

But the original board game, Freedom in the Galaxy, used "missions" to regulate what activities characters could undertake on any given planet (as well as how they were resolved). So I'm going to use them to inspire specific adventures.

Naturally, as a roleplaying game, this version won't get as repetitive as the board game could.

I like the idea of being able to give the players a specific mission. It focuses them on what has to be done and gives some indication of what would be considered a "success".