Why Sindal?

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aiglos63

Why Sindal?

Postby aiglos63 » Mon Sep 07, 2015 9:38 pm

Sindal is an interesting sub-sector but it has a number of problems:

1. The main one is that Jump-1 vessels are largely useless in the sub-sector. Of the ships that can be got as a result of character creation only the scout or lab ship will be of any use.

2. The adventure is set in District 268. Would it not have made more sense to have had an adventure that was set in the Sindal sub-sector or have had District 268 as the sub-sector in the back, so that it links with the adventure.
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby DickNervous » Mon Sep 07, 2015 11:33 pm

I think they picked the Sindal subsector because it is in the Trojan Reach. The Trojan Reach is where the Pirates of Drinax adventure takes place and where Mongoose has invested a lot of time and effort fleshing out the region. In addition to all the details from the PoD adventure there are the Borderland Profiles PDFs (Tanith, Wildeman, Inurin) as well as the Counterweights and Measures adventure.

As for why the beta adventure is in District 268, I couldn't guess.
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby grauenwolf » Tue Sep 08, 2015 12:32 am

aiglos63 wrote: 1. The main one is that Jump-1 vessels are largely useless in the sub-sector. Of the ships that can be got as a result of character creation only the scout or lab ship will be of any use.
That bothers me too.
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby aiglos » Tue Sep 08, 2015 1:11 pm

The adventure itself is an old one which has been done up for 2nd edition.

The reason why Mongoose have done the Sindal subsector makes sense from their point of view, but from a PC's point of view it could well be less appealing. If I were Mongoose, I would put a players section at the front of the subsector which says that where a Free Trader or Yacht is taken as a benefit, they should be replaced by a Far Trader or Safari Ship instead.

It would also make sense if they did a NEW introductory adventure, based in the Sindal subsector, perhaps on Theev. Certainly HighnDry is pretty boring unless you are a pilot, engineer or survival specialist
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby -Daniel- » Tue Sep 08, 2015 5:24 pm

aiglos wrote: If I were Mongoose, I would put a players section at the front of the subsector which says that where a Free Trader or Yacht is taken as a benefit, they should be replaced by a Far Trader or Safari Ship instead.
Interesting options. Would make for a fun swap in that setting.
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby msprange » Tue Sep 08, 2015 8:17 pm

aiglos wrote:The reason why Mongoose have done the Sindal subsector makes sense from their point of view, but from a PC's point of view it could well be less appealing. If I were Mongoose, I would put a players section at the front of the subsector which says that where a Free Trader or Yacht is taken as a benefit, they should be replaced by a Far Trader or Safari Ship instead.
Actually...

I am now wondering why we don't have the Far Trader as an option instead of a Free Trader as a carte blanche rule in Traveller Creation...
aiglos wrote:It would also make sense if they did a NEW introductory adventure, based in the Sindal subsector, perhaps on Theev. Certainly HighnDry is pretty boring unless you are a pilot, engineer or survival specialist
Boring? The players will be on top of an exploding volcano! I think most referees can make something of that.

The reason we have High and Dry is because it links in with Project Steel quite neatly, which will be forming the start of a new campaign set. We are focussing on the Trojan Reach but will still publish for the Marches (and other areas).
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby -Daniel- » Tue Sep 08, 2015 8:31 pm

msprange wrote:
aiglos wrote:The reason why Mongoose have done the Sindal subsector makes sense from their point of view, but from a PC's point of view it could well be less appealing. If I were Mongoose, I would put a players section at the front of the subsector which says that where a Free Trader or Yacht is taken as a benefit, they should be replaced by a Far Trader or Safari Ship instead.
Actually...

I am now wondering why we don't have the Far Trader as an option instead of a Free Trader as a carte blanche rule in Traveller Creation....
I think this would make sense. Offer the Far Trader and Safari as options but make the % lower maybe?
aiglos63

Re: Why Sindal?

Postby aiglos63 » Tue Sep 08, 2015 10:12 pm

No offense, Matthew, but I have played the original adventure, and our marine and mercenary ended up shooting the dog for target practice, the rogue nearly died of altitude sickness and its effects without using any of his skills, and only the scout pilot and naval engineer really felt like they had achieved anything.

Personally I would add in one of the extra scenarios from the Bowman Arm supplement on Walston, ie the Pirate attack, just after the players bring the scout ship back to the starport. We played that straight after and everybody had a whale of a time, including the rogue who convinced the pirates that he was too ill to move and knifed three of them in the back.

I must admit I was hoping that you were going to reset Beltstrike back in Bowman and that was going to be the next port of call. Also Flamarrion is the wrong way to get to the Metal Worlds easily and will this be set after the Fifth Frontier War?
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby phavoc » Thu Oct 01, 2015 3:25 am

After spending a bit of time going through the descriptions I started comparing this to similar supplements. The ones done by Jon Brazer in the Foreven sector seem to be the closest comparisons. I believe that the description needs to be beefed up in the CRB, not only for the sub-sector overall, but for each planet as well. Or at least the ones that make sense. A planet with just 5,000 people in a single dome is not much of a source for adventures. Now the planet that has 8 million people in it living between the light and the dark, well right off the bat that reminds me of some of Frank Herbert's novels. And that is some interesting fodder for adventure ideas.

The reason I mention the JBE work is that he provides about half a page description of the planet, a little background and some high-level adventure hooks if you read into things. The CRB has very specific adventure hooks with a patron and payoff and everything, but they are kind of light on the planet background. It would be nice to see that beefed up a little bit. But it would be most welcomed in the Sindal sector itself received a more in-depth writeup.

In my view it's just too minimal right now. It's supposed to be a core place to start adventuring in, and most RPG's lay the history and people data on pretty thick to pull the player into wanting to play there. Otherwise there doesn't seem to be much point to it. If it's a crossroads of Aslan and Imperium, the only Aslan mention is a dad looking for his son. And even that patron encounter is not setup very deeply. Is the patron encountered ON the planet, or elsewhere? I don't expect to be spoonfed all this stuff from the books, but gee, it's nice as a ref OR player to have some of this already spelled out. THEN it's up to us to tweak or use it as is. But when you start with almost nothing then you really have nothing to lose by tossing it out completely and starting from scratch.
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby colonelclick » Tue Apr 11, 2017 11:53 pm

aiglos63 wrote:
Tue Sep 08, 2015 10:12 pm
our marine and mercenary ended up shooting the dog for target practice
I was reading that your players did not find the mission excited and I was thinking there should have at least been some excitement from the players smuggling a gun through customs at the Walston starport.
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby Jak Nazryth » Wed Apr 12, 2017 4:06 pm

I let my players substitute the Far Trader for the Free trader.
Less cargo, more range, more expense, but a much better adventure ship.
It's a PC focused game so I don't care about the feelings of NPC merchants who only get the crappy free trader. ;)

And I don't want my game to bog down around "how do we pay for the ship" because planet X is out of our range...
We play Traveller to escape reality for a few hours a week, not simulate it. :)
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby paltrysum » Wed Apr 12, 2017 7:01 pm

Sindal has a really wild, dysfunctional feel to it with lots of potential for intrigue and culture clashes.
  • You have a small Imperial presence coreward, but the largest world, Albe, is undergoing massive population pressure issues.
  • You have an organized crime presence just over the Imperial border at Theev.
  • You have several hell worlds which have been decimated by one type of catastrophe or another, most of them human-created (e.g., Noricum).
  • Proximity of the Hierate, Florian League, and Senlis Foederate provide lots of potential diplomatic and clandestine adventures.
It's got a real Wild West feel to it that I like. It's definitely not a J-1 main, but you only have to go a few parsecs trailing to get into the Tobia Main if you want. I just allowed my player group to take a Far Trader with their combination of trader awards and ship shares. With its reduced cargo capacity, I don't believe I'm giving them any inherent advantage. In addition, I've planted a few deep-space fuel depots (one run by the IISS between Albe and Kydde that gloms onto comets and other large chunks of ice found in deep space for purposes of fuel extraction) in strategic locations to make double J-2 journeys possible.

I like using a combination of my own home-grown materials and Mongoose's published material, so I've found a way to make it work. Sure, District 268 is really cool, but after decades of Spinward Marches adventures, I'm happy to try a new stellar region. :D
Last edited by paltrysum on Wed Apr 12, 2017 9:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby hdan » Wed Apr 12, 2017 8:08 pm

You could view the necessity of J-2 as a "level up" opportunity. Put the players in one of the clusters, and they can't get out without upgrading their ship.
Or if they don't have a ship, finding a ship that can and will leave the cluster.
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby PsiTraveller » Thu Apr 13, 2017 1:36 pm

Paltrysum's analysis is spot on. Sindal is a mess. A J2 ship is really useful to bridge the gaps.

There are so many ways the players can have adventures. There is a 4 planet tail end of an 11 planet J1 Main stretching into the Dpres Sector. This offers a chance for trading, piracy, transportation, espionage or any other adventures the GM wants to make.

You have Homestead, needing people, and Albe needing to get rid of people. Tech level differences to overcome and money to be made. Plus you can search for hidden tech bases on several planets to find advanced gear, or weapons of mass destruction.

Rimward you have Oghma raiders creating raiding and piracy dificulties.
Theev as mentioned can be your cyberpunk Chiba city with vat grown assassins, and a moral disregard for anything the players can spend money on. It also offers TL 15 gear for sale (for the right price). Lots of opportunities there.

Further Rimward you have Drinax which may or may not be trying to develop a piratical nation state. Tech-World may be some distance away, but offers high technology with no morals, a need for resources, and a lesser chance of offending a Pirate Lord of Theev.

The Aslan can be the big menace in the Sector ready to wash away the humans living in the area.

A single crew could make an impact on how any number of these storylines develop. Simple actions could have huge repercussions further down the road. So despite the problems (or actually because of them) Sindal is a central player in the outcome of several sectors of space.
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby ochd » Thu Apr 13, 2017 1:52 pm

On the J1 thing, another option is to add collapsible fuel tanks to a free trader -- a cheap way to extend its range but still have the option of not losing the cargo space to fuel if you just want to stick to a J1 main.
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby vladthemad » Sat Apr 15, 2017 7:10 pm

grauenwolf wrote:
Tue Sep 08, 2015 12:32 am
aiglos63 wrote: 1. The main one is that Jump-1 vessels are largely useless in the sub-sector. Of the ships that can be got as a result of character creation only the scout or lab ship will be of any use.
That bothers me too.
MgT1 gave you 5 ship shares in the chosen ship for your career, or 2 for any other ship. I'm surprised something like that didn't carry over into MgT2. While I like the idea that they now get 25% of the ship paid off instead of 5%, how do you deal with having four players roll four different ships as mustering out benefits? Unless you want to make the first adventure about trading in their existing ship/ships and trying to get the best deal they can from a slimy used starship salesperson (I'm telling you, this Far Trader was only used once a month by a little old noble from Aramis. Check the jumpometer, it's practically brand new!) I'd say take a cue from MgT1 and give them a percentage of the value of the mustered out ship and let them apply it to anything they want. For every 25% of the mortgage they get by rolling a free trader or lab ship, give them 10% of the value as a "trade in" to apply to another ship.
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby AndrewW » Sat Apr 15, 2017 8:14 pm

vladthemad wrote:
Sat Apr 15, 2017 7:10 pm
MgT1 gave you 5 ship shares in the chosen ship for your career, or 2 for any other ship. I'm surprised something like that didn't carry over into MgT2. While I like the idea that they now get 25% of the ship paid off instead of 5%, how do you deal with having four players roll four different ships as mustering out benefits?
Traveller Core Ruelebook, Page: 46 wrote:However, for simplicity and campaign balance, only one Traveller may start with a ship in their possession before the campaign begins. If two or more Travellers have gained ships, you should debate who actually gets a ship. The other players will receive an additional pension of Cr25000 every year for every time they rolled a ship as a benefit. This represents part ownership in a commercial vessel and the dividends received on the investment.
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby vladthemad » Sat Apr 15, 2017 8:32 pm

AndrewW wrote:
Sat Apr 15, 2017 8:14 pm
Traveller Core Ruelebook, Page: 46 wrote:However, for simplicity and campaign balance, only one Traveller may start with a ship in their possession before the campaign begins. If two or more Travellers have gained ships, you should debate who actually gets a ship. The other players will receive an additional pension of Cr25000 every year for every time they rolled a ship as a benefit. This represents part ownership in a commercial vessel and the dividends received on the investment.
Well, I guess I'm not as caught up on 2nd Ed as I am on 1st ;) My suggestion still stands though, let them trade in what they have and buy what they want.
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby Condottiere » Sat Apr 15, 2017 10:38 pm

Well, if a group suddenly had a bunch of starships that they still had to pay off, collectively, the first thought in my head would be to borrow enough money weaponize them, recruit some thugs, and go off and conquer some low technology world.
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Re: Why Sindal?

Postby Jame Rowe » Sun Apr 16, 2017 11:20 am

Why not just substitute a Far Trader for the Free Trader, or use another small J 2 design?
Remember, there's no such thing as a "beginner" ship, only a range of ships that are suitable for your campaign type.
ochd wrote:
Thu Apr 13, 2017 1:52 pm
On the J1 thing, another option is to add collapsible fuel tanks to a free trader -- a cheap way to extend its range but still have the option of not losing the cargo space to fuel if you just want to stick to a J1 main.
I second this for anyone who wants to stick with a Jump 1 ship.
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