Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

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Old School
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby Old School » Wed Nov 21, 2018 1:16 pm

Man, I’m falling behind on my paltrysum required reading. But Key West is calling my name, so maybe tonight. . .

Looks like ya’ll had fun playing!
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby ochd » Fri Nov 23, 2018 3:36 pm

Quick question for anyone familiar with Treasure of Sindal (by anyone, I mean, of course, referees only): the four codes needed are contained in the message globes sent to Drinax, Albe, Dpres and Yggdrasil. What's the code burned onto the wall of the base at Noricum for?

Thanks,

Dan.
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby Baldo » Fri Nov 23, 2018 5:14 pm

You need *FIVE* codes, every globe has:

1): 1/5 of the configuration code;
2): the word ACE;
3): a string of co-ordinates with the location of the secret base (where you find 1/5 of the code and the jump solution for the Ace system).

Hope this helps.
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby ochd » Fri Nov 23, 2018 7:45 pm

Ok thanks, Baldo, though page 136, in three or four places, says four particle beams, so I was a bit puzzled.

Dan.
Old School
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby Old School » Fri Nov 23, 2018 11:20 pm

Great stuff as always, paltrysum. I’m gonna have to steal the Alley Cat scene.

One issue with the adventure, which comes from the book: 1000 tons a month from Keaih to Vorito, at Cr2,200 per ton is the offer. Doesnt that seem ridicoulously cheap for a five parsec trip? You’d need 2,000 tons of cargo capacity at jump-2 just to keep that level of one way freight moving, and they’d also need to be heavily armed or escorted given the regular schedule. I’m sure it would be proiftable using stolen ships, but they could do better hauling random freight at standard rates. Am I missing something?
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby paltrysum » Fri Nov 23, 2018 11:26 pm

Thanks much. It is ridiculously low, which I attribute to one thing: the regularity of the route. They don't have to stop, search for freight contracts, engage in speculative trade, etc. The ships just keep on truckin', without any of the time-wasting overhead. In any case, I let them negotiate with Takhweirl for a better deal. The players in this campaign are pretty avid Traveller merchants and immediately dismissed the amount as "typical Aslan female trying to lowball us."
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby Pyromancer » Sun Nov 25, 2018 2:13 am

One of the player's character doesn't know his father. His mother is a normal citizen on the floating palace. My idea now is that his father could be some offworlder who once visited Drinax, and he should naturally show up later in the campaign and make things complicated. So, who should it be?
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby paltrysum » Sun Nov 25, 2018 5:07 am

Pyromancer wrote:
Sun Nov 25, 2018 2:13 am
One of the player's character doesn't know his father. His mother is a normal citizen on the floating palace. My idea now is that his father could be some offworlder who once visited Drinax, and he should naturally show up later in the campaign and make things complicated. So, who should it be?
How about a Camoranian defense force officer?
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby ochd » Sun Nov 25, 2018 11:06 am

Pyromancer wrote:
Sun Nov 25, 2018 2:13 am
So, who should it be?
A senior executive from the Vorito branch of GeDeCo?

Or maybe the mother is actually an adoptive parent, and has kept the truth from the PC: he's a clone. The offworlder father is just part of the fiction.
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby Old School » Sun Nov 25, 2018 6:26 pm

King Oleb could be the father, of course. Does his mother have red hair? A claim to the throne could be made. . .

Or perhaps one of the barons of Cordan, pyschopomps of Clark, or similar big fish from a small pond.

Moving away from Nobles, how About Commander Steyland of the Eurisko? He may have a not been so uptight as a young Ensign. . . (although he's only 42 in the Campaign, so this would need to be modified). Admiral Darokyn could be a fun absentee Dad.

For late campaign hijinks, the GeDeCo executive is a good one. . .

Really depends on the effect you are trying to create.
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby Pyromancer » Mon Nov 26, 2018 1:22 pm

My current plan is to genderswap Fae Borshune and make him the father. He's the GeDeCo administrator of the Vorito highport. He was an Imperial officer, and could have visited Drinax during that time on a mission.
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby paltrysum » Fri Nov 30, 2018 6:29 pm

By the way, Old School, what were your stats for Hroal Irontooth? My guys never got to Exe and encountered Hroal during "Treasure Ship," but they did frame him for the heist. I imagine Hroal won't be too pleased about that and they might be receiving a visit with him at some point. :)
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Old School
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby Old School » Sat Dec 01, 2018 4:14 am

If memory serves, he was said to have about 50 pirates. Due to the size of the pocketwarship, thats just enought to crew it, its fighters, and the handul of small craft he attacked the treasure ship with. As for his personal stats, I believe I had him at Str 15, end 10, and everything else fairly average. Heavy wpns 2 and Melee Natural 3.

An unresolved question is what happened to the Psion that brainwashed Salvedes.

Finally got in a session this week. Much chaos, destruction, and radiation poisoning. Lets just say Travellers are now firmly on the Radar of both the PDQ and GeDeCo. Will try to get a writeup this weekend. After Christmas lights.
Last edited by Old School on Sat Dec 01, 2018 6:34 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby paltrysum » Sat Dec 01, 2018 5:27 am

Old School wrote:
Sat Dec 01, 2018 4:14 am
Finally got in a session this week. Much chaos, destruction, and radiation poisoning. Lets just say Travellers are now firmly on the Radar of both the PDQ and GeDeCo. Will try to get a writeup this weekend. After Christmas lights.
Looking forward to it. We play "Ihatei!" episode 2 on Sunday. I see that as a fairly fast adventure but we'll see. If they get talkative with the various parties on Kteiroa, I'm going to get out of the way and just let them run with it.
"Spacers lead a sedentary life. They live at home, and their home is always with them—their starship, and so is their country—the depths of space."
Old School
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby Old School » Sat Dec 01, 2018 2:30 pm

Yeah, I’ve got to suck it up and wrap my head around all the different clans. Ihatei is the one I want to do next.
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby Old School » Tue Dec 04, 2018 2:24 am

Warning: 2,000 words, and we haven’t even gotten to any action yet. . .

Revolution on Acrid


The Set Up
GeDeCo is mentioned as having significant assets in Acrid, despite virtually the only settlement being the PRQ mining facility. So I imagined a division of power & responsibility:

GeDeCo owns and manages the large class A starport. Due to the inhospitable nature of Acrid, the highport is the dominant facility, although a small protected downport does exist. PRQ’s mining facility (“PRQ Acrid”) is located right next to the downport, and has its own limited downport intended only for PRQ related traffic. PRQ and GeDeCo share responsibility for the weather system that facilities landing. Beyond the shared weather control system and a large tunnel that links the PRQ facility to the commercial zone of the downport, the two megacorps operate distinct and independent operations.

The relationship between the two companies is professional, but as they compete vigorously in the trade arena, it is not always friendly. As part of their agreement, GeDeCo does check passengers leaving Acrid against a PRQ supplied list to ensure that no PRQ Acrid employee with an outstanding balance (i.e. almost all of the common workers) leaves the planet “in violation of local laws”. Therefor GeDeCo is complicit in the near-slave conditions at PRQ Acrid. Each company also has two SDBs that share responsibility for system security. Although each gives preference to its own interests, the SDBs would coordinate to a reasonable extent to provide assistance during any emergency.

PRQ’s SBDs are 400 tons. Because the High Guard versions have so much wasted space, I redesigned them with a medium missile bay in addition to three triple turrets. My travellers are riding around in a pocket warship, so they need a challenge.

The entirety of the PRQ facility is located inside of a mountain, as maintaining a habitable environment is much easier underground, especially when you already have a large fleet of plasma tunneling and mining equipment. PRQ’s downport is a cavern cut into the side of the mountain that can be closed off via hanger doors should the protective weather system fail. It has room for four ships of up to 400 tons, 5 shuttles, and its own two SDBs. The larger pads are used mainly for supplies being brought in, whereas the shuttles carry ore up to an orbital processing facility, and raw materials from the processing facility over to the GeDeCo highport for sale and shipment. PRQ’s space station is solely a processing facility, and sees no commercial traffic.

PRQ Acrid
PRQ Acrid is entered either from the tunnel connecting it with the GeDeCo downport, or via ships entering the downport hanger. Overlooking the port is a traffic and logistics control room, manned by 6 “Citizens”. No weapons are carried, but a locker provides access to rifles and armor.
Also within the hanger is a security detail, located near the main tunnel into the mountain and the rest of the mining facility. A six person security detail, equipped at TL11, oversees the comings and goings ships, supplies, and people.

On the back wall of the hanger at its mid point is a tunnel large enough for two way vehicle traffic as well as a small rail line that carries ore to the shuttles in the hanger. This tunnel runs to the center of the residential facility. This center hub will be referred to as Grand Central Station, or “GCS”. From GCS one can enter one of four quads: the worker residential complex, the access to the mines, the biosphere that provides food for the facility (guarded), or the (heavily guarded) citizen and security residential complex. The mining operation quad is where the workers would congregate to take elevators down to the actual mines, and also where ore is transported back up to be placed in rail carts for the short ride to the shuttles. GCS has a security station with four personnel, equipped with ballistic vests, auto pistols, and stun sticks. The real security is provided by an over watch position, which has a six person team monitoring security cameras as well as the activity on the floor, and heavy armor and rifles on racks ready to deploy.

Within the worker quad, each level is patrolled by a pair of security guards, also with ballistic vests, autopistols, and stunsticks.

Also leading from the hanger are two ancillary tunnels that drop down several levels below the main access tunnel, and lead to a ring tunnel that encircles all four quads, essentially entire facility with the exception of the hanger. Access to this tunnel is heavily guarded, and several checkpoints are placed in the ring itself. Along this ring are two power stations, and two water/sewer/air etc. stations. The technicians manning these utility stations are citizens, and have access to light armor and arms in lockers. Also accessed from the ring are the two missile launchers, each of which has two gunners/technicians on duty at all times. Because they are behind several layers of security, missile techs are typically unarmed, but also have access to light armor and weapons. Access to the ring tunnel and therefore these systems is strictly controlled, and most common workers never see these portions of the facility.

The ring tunnel also contains hidden, secure access to both the citizen’s quad and the biosphere, as well as an escape tunnel (near the citizen’s quad) leading to the exterior of the mountain, where an airlock at a relatively sheltered cove can be used to transfer passengers to and from any grav vehicle (including a small starship) that is also equipped with a corrosion resistant airlock.

The entire facility is scalable as desired. The quads can be of really any size, and the ring just gets bigger to accommodate them. You can also have as many or as few levels for each quad as you desire. I began thinking I would map out each quad using Robert Pierce’s wonderful gynomorphs book, but that proved both ambitious an unnecessarily. Individual maps from that resource can be used for any close quarters combat if desired.


I totaled around 60-65 security personnel for various positions, which means with three shifts (a 56 hour work week) You would have about 200 security personnel total. The numbers of citizens and workers are less important, although for workers there are simply a lot of them. In the event of an attack, a third of these would be scrambling to find weapons and armor, and a third would be sleeping and a little slower to respond. There also two 8 person response teams, one of which is on duty at all times. The only operate two shifts because the vast majority of their “on duty’ time is spent lounging in their barracks, albeit in their armor. The response teams are equipped with laser rifles, stunners, cutlasses, and body armor. Higher level skills than your average security forces.

The Situation
The Travellers have agreed to assist the workers in overthrowing PRQ control of the mining operation. To that end they’ve signed a mercenary contract to add a layer of legitimacy to their plan, as if such things matter in the Borderlands. Their merchant ship, the Mendina, is mostly crewed by former Imperial Navy personnel, and has made multiple supply runs to Acrid, building a rapport with the SDB crews and port personnel. They’ve also brought nine Vespexer mercenaries led by the Traveller “Deni” as new employees. It is known that the Mendina is in the service of Drinax, and its crew has recommended Vespexers as an ideal future workforce for the mines, given their comfort with harsh environments and Spartan living conditions. Given the challenges of operating on Acrid, this idea is very appealing to the PRQ (who know next to nothing about the typical Vespexer). Dozens of body pistols and diplo armor shirts have also been smuggled in. They were too scared to attempt to smuggle any heavier arms.

The travellers have a good knowledge of the layout and the defenses of PRQ Acrid, although they don’t know the details within the security ring, or the back passages from the ring to the citizen or bio quads. Nor do they know about the back door to the facility through the mountain. They are also unaware of the rapid response teams. They have obtained the maintenance schedule for the SDBs, so they plan to arrive when one of them is out of commission. This schedule is, of course, coordinated with the GeDeCo SDBs so as to not have multiple SDBs down at the same time.

Their plan is to strike fast and hard to secure as much of the facility as they can, and then embargo the facility until PRQ cries uncle. Some consideration was given to an embargo only, but the connection with the GeDeCo port means to have real effect they either have to control the tunnel between PRQ Acrid and GeDeCo down port, or they have to cut off the GeDeCo downport as well. They’d prefer to only take on one Mega Corp at a time.

Their approach to the campaign is that they are the good guys. Drinax is good. Even if it Drinax isn’t good they will make it so. They will use violence without hesitation when necessary, but avoid it when possible. They honor both their promises and their threats. They aren’t above partnering with some seriously messed up local governments to build a coalition to stand up to the Aslan. Those who served the Imperium have some loyalty there, but are less than thrilled with Tobia’s unwillingness or inability to check the Aslan threat.

With that backdrop, they jump from Cordan into Acrid. The Mendina jumps slightly ahead of the Harrier and Rao’s Revenge, hoping to also arrive slightly ahead of them but not too much, which they do. The Medina has the 15 surviving Vespexers from the Battle of Exe, heavily armed, equipped with three Gecko assault vehicles (Vehicle Handbook, page, 83) they picked up on Cordan. The Mendina is also carrying food, medical supplies, and of course tons of weapons and armor for the mine workers.

The Mendina arrives in system as planned and receives a friendly greeting from PRQ’s one operating SDB. The current pilot, Beni, informs the SRB crew that Captain Dante has stayed behind to see to the repairs of the captured pocket warship (news of this exploit reached Acrid several weeks ago), and that he sends he regards. He also promises the SDB crew a tour of the ship when it arrives in Acrid, which likely will be in a few weeks’ time. Hima jumps on the comm and tells everyone about Colonel Vangeles destroying a section of the fusion reactor with his PGMP. A plan is made to meet up at the solitary GeDeCo downport bar if the Mendina is still in system when the SDB returns home.

The SRB captain extends his thanks and allows the Mendina to pass without a search, as it is known vessel, and of course it and its crew are now legendary for capturing a pirated pocket warship (35-40 days ago in game time). In parting, Beni shares a rumor of another large Aslan vessel, possibly around 1000 tons, that has jumped into several nearby systems recently without making contact with local authorities. “It might just be a freighter, you can never tell with the Aslan. Apparently, it keeps its distance, and they try to make all their ships look fierce, even their trash haulers”. The PRQ crew is unaware of this rumor, but thank the Mendina for sharing the information. (Deception check passed).

As the Mendina approaches Acrid hours later, the Pocket Warship and the Harrier arrive in system. The Harrier stealth jumps, but Rao’s Revenge is picked up on scanners, suspiciously far away (but not too far away). It starts just kind of puttering about, with no transponder, and not answering hails). The PRQ SDB takes the bait and sets course to investigate, informing both PRQ Acrid and GeDeCo Starport of its situation and asking for GeDeCo’s temporary assistance in monitoring incoming traffic to the PRQ port.

Let chaos and carnage ensue. . .
Last edited by Old School on Tue Dec 04, 2018 11:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
paltrysum
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby paltrysum » Tue Dec 04, 2018 11:27 pm

Sounds like they have the right approach but they're missing a lot of key information. There might be a few dead Vespexers after they're done. Maybe more than they bargained for. :shock:
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Old School
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby Old School » Wed Dec 05, 2018 12:05 am

How could you tell? :D

They are sensitive to using the Vespexers as cannon fodder, even more so now than before this attack. They will have to explain this to the King and to Chieftan Galx soon enough. The cause is just, however, which justifies the sacrifice. That’s their story anyway.

Leading the Vespexers in a glorious battle supporting downtrodden commoners to overthrow a corrupt and uncaring ruling minority might have interesting consequences down the road. . .

I think if I were them I would have put more focus on hacking security systems rather than a pure shock and awe frontal assault. Their deception to cruise up to the front door was great, and the attack plan was okay, but if they had a way to access or at least interfere with the security systems it would be a tremendous advantage.
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby paltrysum » Wed Dec 05, 2018 2:12 am

Well, they'll learn. The players in our campaign have learned that when they plan, they almost always win. When they just throw mud on the wall to see what sticks, people get killed. The game scenarios can be unforgiving when the players leave stones unturned. All you can do as the referee is sit back and wince sometimes but hey, it usually makes for a good story regardless. :)
"Spacers lead a sedentary life. They live at home, and their home is always with them—their starship, and so is their country—the depths of space."
Old School
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Re: Pirates of Drinax - GMs thread

Postby Old School » Wed Dec 05, 2018 5:27 am

Eh, I made it hard. They are smart, extremely well equipped, and are playing very skilled characters. They planned and executed okay. A little short on information, but I dont know how much I would have given them anyway. I’ll try to write it up tomorrow.

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