Saturday, October 19, 2013

Lowell Was Right, Playtest #3 Setup

While camping last weekend, Klax, El, and I set up and played the first session of playtest #3. Playtest #2 is not finished yet, but since we will not be playing it until next weekend, we will be playing a second session with a less than full group today.

We rolled that there were six Great Powers on Earth - Greater nigeria, the Australasian Republic, the North African Confederation, The Atlantic Maritime Republic, the Pan-Arab Union,  and Imperial Manchu China. The players decided to play members of the Pan-Arab Union.

To generate the backstory as to how this particular group of superpowers came to be, we randomly generated a decade-by-decade timeline from 1880:
1880s - A Small but Important War
1890s - Widespread Political Ferment
1900s - A Great War
1910s - A Great Technological Revolution
1920s - A Great War
1930s - A Great Political Revolution
1940s - A Severe Cultural Repression
1950s - An Artistic-Musical Phenomenon
1960s - A Cultural Blossoming
1970s - A Pandemic
1980s - A Widespread Religious ferment
1990s - A Severe Political Repression
2000s - A Great Famine
2010s - A Great Change in Morals

The interpretation of this was that Europe had been devastated in the second Great War because of the fruits of the tech revolution of the decade before - Antimass and re-knotted hydrogen explosives. The political revolution that followed was the former colonial areas gaining their independence. The artistic-muical phenomenon in the 1950s was the emergence of Rockout as a world music, followed by a cultural blossoming as art, music, and literature followed the lead of rockout and resulted in a new freedom of expression.

The USA dissolved in the 1970s under the weight of a pandemic, which weakened many other nations as well around the world. Islam underwent a sweeping change from the ground up, as the very different islams evolved on Mars, Mercury, and Venus among the descendants of captured slaves impacted on Earth's islam. For the whole of the 1990s, Islamic regimes tried to repress the changes, but But most were swept away by the following decade. The last remnants of the Western democracies were destroyed in  the Great Famine of the 2000s, with only The Atlantic Maritime Republic still claiming Great Power status. Finally, the cultural blossoming that started in the 1950s played out in a great change in morals, as religions re-interpreted their source materials based on both other versions of their religions in the solar system - as Islam had done - and on other, non-Earth-centered religions.

As their Association, the players constructed PAMECO, The Pan-Arab Mineral Extraction COmpany. PAMECO was a huge organization with fleets of ships, headquartered in a hollow asteroid in the Belt. The Association had a budget of 65536 build points, and the players layed out an enormous company based around resource extraction on many worlds.

Their particular bit, however, was quite a lot smaller. The Exploration vessel Abu Ibn Battuta, with 40 people aboard- 12 crew and 28 passengers.  The Ibn Battuta was a constant thrust ship designed for the outer solar system. They were on a journey to Saturn's great moon Titan, which one day held a great civilization, but which was now dead and ice covered. The journey would take them 9 months out  from  their asteroid base, and nine back, with a layover of six months to set up a semi-permanent mining settlement. Many of the passengers would be staying on Titan, and the ship would be considerably less crowded on the return trip.

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