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Back to Indigo. Tonight the characters were on Terra Prime at the Fleet Syndicate's Gibraltar port: two gigantic ziggurats holding many ships like theirs. Thse crew dispersed throughout T-Prime -- to Kiev, Bablyon, Easter Island and elsewhere -- to perform research, say hello to family or just relax.

Captain Stensky was murdered by a member of the Davinci artists' syndic while he was writing a psychohistorical paper in Freiplatz, in the area immediadtely around the Gibraltar zone. There are no solid laws, so they had to let the Davinci go. Like all Davincis, this one looked like a living, breathing version of the Vitruvian Man. Stensky suffered brain damage so reconstruction will take time, though it won't be impossible. Without black box technology, creating a real mind is very tricky.

(This means that [livejournal.com profile] kearsley, who was away, can return as Stensky at any time.)

The characters were shocked, but couldn't do much about it. They were tempted to obliterate the Davincis' island off the coat of North Africa but this *would* be illegal. They moved forward, decided the X-O would advance to captain and continued on their assignment to find out what happened to the FSV Communard, lost in unexplored territory Sphere-South of them.

They arrived just outside the last known location and discovered a large storm -- and unknown Transapient-origin nanites. In the nanites' zone they could detect many, many derelict vessels and after careful trial and error discovered that they either destroyed or rendered inert many high technologies. The Antipodean's diamond-positronium hull is held together with nanoscale gravitostrong generators and these nanites attacked these materials, though not ordinary nanomanufactured diamond.

As a result, the command locus planned to manufacture a propellor-driven plane. They'll fly it into the danger zone next session to look for Communard survivors.
eyebeams: (Default)
Back to Indigo. Tonight the characters were on Terra Prime at the Fleet Syndicate's Gibraltar port: two gigantic ziggurats holding many ships like theirs. Thse crew dispersed throughout T-Prime -- to Kiev, Bablyon, Easter Island and elsewhere -- to perform research, say hello to family or just relax.

Captain Stensky was murdered by a member of the Davinci artists' syndic while he was writing a psychohistorical paper in Freiplatz, in the area immediadtely around the Gibraltar zone. There are no solid laws, so they had to let the Davinci go. Like all Davincis, this one looked like a living, breathing version of the Vitruvian Man. Stensky suffered brain damage so reconstruction will take time, though it won't be impossible. Without black box technology, creating a real mind is very tricky.

(This means that [livejournal.com profile] kearsley, who was away, can return as Stensky at any time.)

The characters were shocked, but couldn't do much about it. They were tempted to obliterate the Davincis' island off the coat of North Africa but this *would* be illegal. They moved forward, decided the X-O would advance to captain and continued on their assignment to find out what happened to the FSV Communard, lost in unexplored territory Sphere-South of them.

They arrived just outside the last known location and discovered a large storm -- and unknown Transapient-origin nanites. In the nanites' zone they could detect many, many derelict vessels and after careful trial and error discovered that they either destroyed or rendered inert many high technologies. The Antipodean's diamond-positronium hull is held together with nanoscale gravitostrong generators and these nanites attacked these materials, though not ordinary nanomanufactured diamond.

As a result, the command locus planned to manufacture a propellor-driven plane. They'll fly it into the danger zone next session to look for Communard survivors.
eyebeams: (Default)
Like most FSVs, the Antipodean has various interest groups that meet by brane and pursue independent projects ranging from the useful to the silly -- and sometimes, the silly elements are useful, too. Due to the ease of tracking discussions and projects through brane droplet computing and local mistnets, most crew members belong to anywhere between a dozen and several hundred groups, though they may send an aliased expert to deal with trivial interaction. Even nonmembers can scan public access brilligs (brane logs) and briks (user editable common branespaces) for for fun.

The PSCG is a very popular group that most Antipodean members belong to. While the current captain is more of a serious history buff, most of the crew are interested in cultural productions: film, pre-AI computer gaming, music, fashion and so forth. This has several effects on shipboard life. For instance, by consensus the ship's default interior skinning is a faux-Victorian style more reminiscent of Jules Verne and 20th-20th ACE (Asymmetric Common Era) "steampunk" than history.

Science Fiction is obviously held in some regard by the crew, though most enjoy it as an exploration of alien (pre-Ekumen) values writ large instead of in its historical role as the precursor to modern Romantic Media. Really, they don't like to overthink it. These so-called "Trashfans" are responsible for most classical cultural production, and the faction is active across Commonwealth society.

One representative Trashfan product is the t-shirt. These are nonprogrammable, utilizing vintage technology (such as "silkscreening" and "inkjet printing") whenever possible. For instance, in the wake of Operation Strident Compromise a few wits with an interest in classical SF theatre and politics printed shorts with this design. There are a few variants featuring instantly recognizeable archetypes like Pierrot, Spock and Lady Di, though obviously purists prefer Spock or the default image.

eyebeams: (Default)
Like most FSVs, the Antipodean has various interest groups that meet by brane and pursue independent projects ranging from the useful to the silly -- and sometimes, the silly elements are useful, too. Due to the ease of tracking discussions and projects through brane droplet computing and local mistnets, most crew members belong to anywhere between a dozen and several hundred groups, though they may send an aliased expert to deal with trivial interaction. Even nonmembers can scan public access brilligs (brane logs) and briks (user editable common branespaces) for for fun.

The PSCG is a very popular group that most Antipodean members belong to. While the current captain is more of a serious history buff, most of the crew are interested in cultural productions: film, pre-AI computer gaming, music, fashion and so forth. This has several effects on shipboard life. For instance, by consensus the ship's default interior skinning is a faux-Victorian style more reminiscent of Jules Verne and 20th-20th ACE (Asymmetric Common Era) "steampunk" than history.

Science Fiction is obviously held in some regard by the crew, though most enjoy it as an exploration of alien (pre-Ekumen) values writ large instead of in its historical role as the precursor to modern Romantic Media. Really, they don't like to overthink it. These so-called "Trashfans" are responsible for most classical cultural production, and the faction is active across Commonwealth society.

One representative Trashfan product is the t-shirt. These are nonprogrammable, utilizing vintage technology (such as "silkscreening" and "inkjet printing") whenever possible. For instance, in the wake of Operation Strident Compromise a few wits with an interest in classical SF theatre and politics printed shorts with this design. There are a few variants featuring instantly recognizeable archetypes like Pierrot, Spock and Lady Di, though obviously purists prefer Spock or the default image.

eyebeams: (Default)
I rolled two natural 20s in a row tonight for Twin Strike, laying some heavy crits on the bad guy. I'm playing a Warforged Ranger in our 4e game. That kicks ass.

The Warforged article in Dragon has a nonsensical, badly edited racial encounter power and positively drips with excuses for why you cannot pick a Warforged to play anything like the guy people would pick a Warforged to be. So I'm stuck with the encouter power in the MM, which is weak, but at least makes some kind of sense. I think I may write a proposed redesign.

(The article isn't all bad, since it made my character's implanted hand crossbow official. But still . . . not an auspicious experience with DDI material for me.)

Once you have the minis and a full selection of PCs going 4e runs quite well and I'm pretty pleased with it, but it is occasionally chafing. There need to be more effective things you can do with skills, for instance (I wanted to Crocodile Dundee a dire boar but we discovered that by default, this was a time consuming skill challengey thing, not something I could do to avoid just whaling on the monster in mid-encounter).

Indigo is going marvelously. The characters decided that to reconcile the land and aquatic civilizations they would just kill the leaders of both (psychohistorical projections listed this as a workable option), but the characters started to have doubts. So they argued alternatives before the ship's collective (they're brain-linked via Auntie, the ship's expert), making social rolls to determine who was the most persuasive, and reached a compromise to merely kidnap key figures from both governments. They asked for help from a Protection-focused ship called the Vengeance of Spartacus, who agreed to perform the snatch on land.

On their end, the PCs mounted an underwater assualt of the aquatic legislature using two wire-guided shuttles, two mecha and a few hardsuited characters. There was a brief tussle with several genetically engineered armored battle squid that had poisonous antipersonnel spines. Once character got hit and was on the fun end of poison and the bends, but they still accomplished their objectives.

The system is gradually drifting away from its Adventure! origins. I've used ideas from an upcoming WoD book to streamline combat and get rid of initiative, as well as institute a system where I can smoothly run person-scale and vehicle scale action. On the setting end, the combination of Trek tropes, transhumanism and anarchism works great. It's a sandbox (they picked this tecton out of five choices) and with the anarchy I don't have to worry about the strictures of military SF. Strangely, this makes leadership matter *more*, since the crew really can tell the PCs to fuck off if they express a plan badly. The artificial nature of the world (which owes a lot fo Stross Missile Gap lets me indulge Trek-y contrivances. They decided on this situation, but they could have visited the Neandertal tecton, or one where the Second Crusade was in full swing.

So gaming's been going great. That's it, really.
eyebeams: (Default)
I rolled two natural 20s in a row tonight for Twin Strike, laying some heavy crits on the bad guy. I'm playing a Warforged Ranger in our 4e game. That kicks ass.

The Warforged article in Dragon has a nonsensical, badly edited racial encounter power and positively drips with excuses for why you cannot pick a Warforged to play anything like the guy people would pick a Warforged to be. So I'm stuck with the encouter power in the MM, which is weak, but at least makes some kind of sense. I think I may write a proposed redesign.

(The article isn't all bad, since it made my character's implanted hand crossbow official. But still . . . not an auspicious experience with DDI material for me.)

Once you have the minis and a full selection of PCs going 4e runs quite well and I'm pretty pleased with it, but it is occasionally chafing. There need to be more effective things you can do with skills, for instance (I wanted to Crocodile Dundee a dire boar but we discovered that by default, this was a time consuming skill challengey thing, not something I could do to avoid just whaling on the monster in mid-encounter).

Indigo is going marvelously. The characters decided that to reconcile the land and aquatic civilizations they would just kill the leaders of both (psychohistorical projections listed this as a workable option), but the characters started to have doubts. So they argued alternatives before the ship's collective (they're brain-linked via Auntie, the ship's expert), making social rolls to determine who was the most persuasive, and reached a compromise to merely kidnap key figures from both governments. They asked for help from a Protection-focused ship called the Vengeance of Spartacus, who agreed to perform the snatch on land.

On their end, the PCs mounted an underwater assualt of the aquatic legislature using two wire-guided shuttles, two mecha and a few hardsuited characters. There was a brief tussle with several genetically engineered armored battle squid that had poisonous antipersonnel spines. Once character got hit and was on the fun end of poison and the bends, but they still accomplished their objectives.

The system is gradually drifting away from its Adventure! origins. I've used ideas from an upcoming WoD book to streamline combat and get rid of initiative, as well as institute a system where I can smoothly run person-scale and vehicle scale action. On the setting end, the combination of Trek tropes, transhumanism and anarchism works great. It's a sandbox (they picked this tecton out of five choices) and with the anarchy I don't have to worry about the strictures of military SF. Strangely, this makes leadership matter *more*, since the crew really can tell the PCs to fuck off if they express a plan badly. The artificial nature of the world (which owes a lot fo Stross Missile Gap lets me indulge Trek-y contrivances. They decided on this situation, but they could have visited the Neandertal tecton, or one where the Second Crusade was in full swing.

So gaming's been going great. That's it, really.
eyebeams: (Default)
To show the players that I've been doing more than just fiddling around with the logo . . .

New Character Sheet )

This version demosntrates several differences from the root Adventure! game. Attributes are different, and have associated core skills -- things you roll if nothing else applies. The remaining skills have been greatly cut down to reduce confusion as to which skill applies when, which was a recurring issue. Soak is gone -- it's a base of 8 HL + Stamina instead.

"Enhancements" are Knacks -- characters have a pool of points that act like Backgrounds/Freebies to buy them on a mission to mission basis, thanks to a mix of speed learning, surgery and retroviral mutations.
eyebeams: (Default)
To show the players that I've been doing more than just fiddling around with the logo . . .

New Character Sheet )

This version demosntrates several differences from the root Adventure! game. Attributes are different, and have associated core skills -- things you roll if nothing else applies. The remaining skills have been greatly cut down to reduce confusion as to which skill applies when, which was a recurring issue. Soak is gone -- it's a base of 8 HL + Stamina instead.

"Enhancements" are Knacks -- characters have a pool of points that act like Backgrounds/Freebies to buy them on a mission to mission basis, thanks to a mix of speed learning, surgery and retroviral mutations.
eyebeams: (Default)
The FSV Antipodean's logo represents the values of the Commonwealth and the Fleet Syndicate in particular.

The purple ring represents the whole of the Ekumen in twilight - the unknown reaches that the Antipodean aims to explore. Within the ring, a prayer that all beings be liberated from suffering represents the larger aim of the Fleet Syndicate to ease suffering and act compassionately. Steel and gold stand for the technology and material resources of the Commonwealth.

The Ashoka Chrakra at the heart of the patch is an ancient design of special significance to the Fleet Syndicate, which traces its ideological lineage to the 21st Century syndicalist para-nation of India, particularly its military syndicate: an especially ethical organization by the standards of asymmetric historical epochs. The design once adorned the flag of pre-syndicalist India, and before that, was the symbol of the Emperor Ashoka - in legend, a living pinnacle of warrior virtue. These associations make the Asjoka Chakra the core symbol of the Fleet Syndicate, though members who prefer a less historical (or less militant) approach also see it as a sign of peaceful expansion, as the wheel's spokes radiate in the ten directions.

The Antipodean was named by its current captain, Mikhail Stensky, with the assent of the crew. It will be renamed if a future crew wishes, though tradition holds that this should only be done to ward off bad luck or rid the ship of the stain of serious misconduct. The base Commonwealth Intertectonic Recognition Code (CIRC, F for Fleet) of 999 was selected by the Technate collective that built it - another tradition. In this case, the number signifies a "trinity of a trinity of trinities." Any three to five digit number is permitted, as long as it's unique. The version number (1) will only change if a future vessel claims the Antipodean's number after the original has been decommissioned.

eyebeams: (Default)
The FSV Antipodean's logo represents the values of the Commonwealth and the Fleet Syndicate in particular.

The purple ring represents the whole of the Ekumen in twilight - the unknown reaches that the Antipodean aims to explore. Within the ring, a prayer that all beings be liberated from suffering represents the larger aim of the Fleet Syndicate to ease suffering and act compassionately. Steel and gold stand for the technology and material resources of the Commonwealth.

The Ashoka Chrakra at the heart of the patch is an ancient design of special significance to the Fleet Syndicate, which traces its ideological lineage to the 21st Century syndicalist para-nation of India, particularly its military syndicate: an especially ethical organization by the standards of asymmetric historical epochs. The design once adorned the flag of pre-syndicalist India, and before that, was the symbol of the Emperor Ashoka - in legend, a living pinnacle of warrior virtue. These associations make the Asjoka Chakra the core symbol of the Fleet Syndicate, though members who prefer a less historical (or less militant) approach also see it as a sign of peaceful expansion, as the wheel's spokes radiate in the ten directions.

The Antipodean was named by its current captain, Mikhail Stensky, with the assent of the crew. It will be renamed if a future crew wishes, though tradition holds that this should only be done to ward off bad luck or rid the ship of the stain of serious misconduct. The base Commonwealth Intertectonic Recognition Code (CIRC, F for Fleet) of 999 was selected by the Technate collective that built it - another tradition. In this case, the number signifies a "trinity of a trinity of trinities." Any three to five digit number is permitted, as long as it's unique. The version number (1) will only change if a future vessel claims the Antipodean's number after the original has been decommissioned.

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[livejournal.com profile] kearsley  has used Indigo as a jumping off point for exploring dice pool difficulties and genre in general. Check out his latest posts. He and [livejournal.com profile] magicbox (a math teacher) are my go-to guys for mathy elements in games. We has a rather rough combat against merpeople with tasers two sessions ago and are still processing the results.
eyebeams: (Default)
[livejournal.com profile] kearsley  has used Indigo as a jumping off point for exploring dice pool difficulties and genre in general. Check out his latest posts. He and [livejournal.com profile] magicbox (a math teacher) are my go-to guys for mathy elements in games. We has a rather rough combat against merpeople with tasers two sessions ago and are still processing the results.
eyebeams: (Default)
(This is not an "Actual Play" report -- just game notes to track stuff.)

So as I said, we're using a hacked version of Adventure! We'd sketched out basic concepts last week, so the main thing was setting up game traits according to the particular hack I was using: one with different skills, where characters can go in for a bit of psychophysical formatting to get mission-specific "Knacks" (enhancements).

While the Antipodean was flying in transtectonic airspace the characters started with that venerable post-TNG tradition, the staff meeting. They reviewed probe data and decided on the Kilimanjaro-type world (one big continent, a bunch of islands) that was recovering from nuclear war.

They decided to fly in from a fair distance and scan the coast, which had unusual signs of damage. They detected an underwater city and decided to hover over it. This was not interpreted as a friendly gesture. A floating nuclear missile platform launched -- and the missile hit. Two bulkheads penetrated and 23 dead or lost. Not a good start.

They dusted the platform with one ship's azoth. When another rose, they severed the attached cabale with a directed energy mode shot while the merman on it desperately tried to aim a primitive looking artillary piece at it. They retreated to a safe distance and supervised some damage control efforts, while hacking the merpeople's radio. They sent a message of piece, while discovering that of the 23 gone, 11 were floating on the water. The merman tried to bargain with the crew for metal and ceramics in exchange for the survivors' lives. The crew knocked him out with an azoth and brought him aboard, while monitoring communications that indicated that the mermen's industrial base was probably falling apart.

They grabbed the survivors and the merman (Kris) and supervised care for 20 wounded.

That's all for now.

eyebeams: (Default)
(This is not an "Actual Play" report -- just game notes to track stuff.)

So as I said, we're using a hacked version of Adventure! We'd sketched out basic concepts last week, so the main thing was setting up game traits according to the particular hack I was using: one with different skills, where characters can go in for a bit of psychophysical formatting to get mission-specific "Knacks" (enhancements).

While the Antipodean was flying in transtectonic airspace the characters started with that venerable post-TNG tradition, the staff meeting. They reviewed probe data and decided on the Kilimanjaro-type world (one big continent, a bunch of islands) that was recovering from nuclear war.

They decided to fly in from a fair distance and scan the coast, which had unusual signs of damage. They detected an underwater city and decided to hover over it. This was not interpreted as a friendly gesture. A floating nuclear missile platform launched -- and the missile hit. Two bulkheads penetrated and 23 dead or lost. Not a good start.

They dusted the platform with one ship's azoth. When another rose, they severed the attached cabale with a directed energy mode shot while the merman on it desperately tried to aim a primitive looking artillary piece at it. They retreated to a safe distance and supervised some damage control efforts, while hacking the merpeople's radio. They sent a message of piece, while discovering that of the 23 gone, 11 were floating on the water. The merman tried to bargain with the crew for metal and ceramics in exchange for the survivors' lives. The crew knocked him out with an azoth and brought him aboard, while monitoring communications that indicated that the mermen's industrial base was probably falling apart.

They grabbed the survivors and the merman (Kris) and supervised care for 20 wounded.

That's all for now.

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Purloined for my own use:

Read more... )
eyebeams: (Default)
Purloined for my own use:

Read more... )
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