Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Organized Sci-Fi Play

Last night, I got to thinking about the lack of organized play opportunities for sci-fi RPGs. Now, I look at the play experience generally offered by the current iteration of the RPGA, and that’s not something that would interest me (no offense meant to those who do enjoy it). But I do think it would be cool to take something like an entire domain torn by civil or corporate war in Traveller, divide the sectors up by regions and states, and have a lot of home campaign reports sway the overall results of the conflict. Traveller’s Third Imperium would be a great setting, just for its diversity of factions, huge amount of room to roam, and how developments hex by hex can add up to a fascinating political mosaic. Then again, you could also do it with the diverse and jumbled cultures of something like Starcluster 2.

I guess I’ll just consign this idea to the dustbin of Probably Not Happening, but I still think it would rock.

12 comments:

Dale said...

Mongoose has mentioned something about a "living Traveller" something or other.
Dale Mccoy
Jon Brazer Enterprises

clash bowley said...

Hi Zach!

How would it get done, a wiki? A Google Wave?

StarCluster is not a good candidate because there isn't any canon universe outside of the system stat-blocks. One would have to be completely firmed up first before it got changed. Even I have only scratched the surface on that.

-clash

Zachary The First said...

@clash—I think the more wide-open nature would make it a good candidate. It wouldn’t be hard to build a basic setting around the blocks there.

I think it’d be done for home and FLGS play, and reports sent in from there.

If Mongoose does do a Living Traveller, I’d be curious to see how it’s implemented.

clash bowley said...

It could be done as a collaborative project, with different authors setting up detailed systems. That means a Wiki or Wave would be the best option - a Wiki would probably be best, as Waves aren't yet open to all. It would certainly be interesting, what with IHW: StarCluster sharing the setting with the original game.

-clash

Andreas Davour said...

Like I always say in these circumstances:

What's the bloody point?

I wonder if I'll ever *get* this about organized play. I just makes me think of the mob...

Zachary The First said...

Hey, I'm not a huge fan of organized play normally, either, at least not the style of gaming that goes in (in my experience) in orgs such as the RPGA. But ideally, it is a way for people to find games and contribute to an overall story. Then again, it also is the last refuge for min-maxers that can't keep a normal gaming group to get to game with total strangers who have to tolerate their crap for 4+ hours at conventions. That's probably another post unto itself.

clash bowley said...

I wouldn't be interested in RPGA-like play either. I *would* be interested in collaborative play in a common setting, where things other groups do affect your group. That would be more my speed.

-clash

Ragnorakk said...

Don't give up! I keep struggling with similar wishes, and wonder if there's a way it can be done without become a big pile o' suck. I have faith that at some point the stars will be right and the internet will allow for some kind of large scale collaborative and persistent game play that, well, is worth it. Dunno what/how yet - like I said - it's more a matter of faith right now...

Andreas Davour said...

I see that wish for a "common story" crop up once in a while. I wonder if that's where I loose it. Story is the veil of Maya, obscuring the real thing. IMHO.

But, I hate everything that stinks of metaplot, with a vengence, so maybe I'm not just the market.

BeRKA said...

Been there, done that. :-)

Anyway, some rules that might inspire you are "Pocket Empires" for Traveller T4. (That is one of the few books from that ruleset that is useful.)

HinterWelt said...

I agree with Clash, RPGA not so much, collaborative project very much. The biggest problem I see is that it would be a full time job to coordinate. What happens when characters from sector A want to travel to Sector B? Sure, room enough for all but you know someone is going to bring an army.

Anyway, I was talking this kind of thing over with some fans of Neb. Especially of interest is a Hagan Theocracy invading the Nebuleos in an attempt to destroy the infidels. This would be centered around three factions, the Jiran Theocracy on one side and the Republic of Free Worlds on the other with a Free Traders League block playing both sides. Could be cool.

clash bowley said...

The Neb would make an awesome battleground... :D

-clash