Monday, August 30, 2010

Some Relicts and Randomness

I am running a StarCluster 3 game on Thursday nights with Tim Kirk (Silverlion), his wife, and John, both of whom comment here on this blog. Last Thursday we created our company, a combination of the A-Team, Leverage, and Burn Notice. We also created our Sector - the play area. We each took three stars and created systems for them.

My three systems were Honeybee, Toddler, and Caliban. We created the systems randomly, like the sector, with the tables in the game.

The Honeybee System

What I liked about the Honeybee System was Queen Bee, the big gas giant, which was populated by hundreds of millions of mostly Vantor living in the clouds. Yet it was not a State, but only an Affiliate. What occurs to me is that it is probably a fractured rather than a unified, society - unable to solidify into a world government necessary to become a State. Another bit I liked was Caesar. Caesar is normally uninhabitable, but has a single, large inhabited feature. There are a lot of possibilities for this, but what intrigued me was an oasys on a desert planet, one area with enough water to support life.

The Toddler System

The most interesting thing about the Toddler system to me is the two space stations. One is inhabited, with 10s of millions of mostly Humans. The other is uninhabited, strangely. I posited that the people of the habitat outgrew the old station and built a new one. It has drifted, derelict, into the trailing trojan point of the world Barrelhouse. There is also a large asteroid in the leading trojan, Kabinda, inhabited by millions of humans, but at a Tech level of 5 - Steam technology. This was, I determined, a rock hollowed out by the robot brain of a Diaspora ship from earth. Something had gone wrong with the passengers, and their culture had collapsed. The robot brain of the ship, doing its best to find them a home, had heated the asteroid and filled it with breathable gasses, creating a safe place for the broken society, after seeding the interior, it let the people out into their new home, where slowly they had built up a new, more stable society. As TL 5 is the minimum tech level allowing contact, the asteroid has probably only recently been contacted.

The Chandrasekar System

The most intriguing thing about the Chandrasekar System is the concourse of four inhabited moons orbiting the gas giant Einstein. The intricate social dance of these varied worlds - one independent, one Diasporan community, and two SaVaHuTa - all States and Colonizers, must be fascinating. I'd love to look at the development of their interdependence.

Random creation forces us to come up with non-standard solutions to the problems they present. Why is one station uninhabited? Why are these steam-tech humans living on a big asteroid? What possible combination of strange coincidences must have happened here to create this anomaly? This is why I love random generation - it forces me to think out of the box.


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