First and Second Edition

Discuss the Traveller RPG and its many settings
ChalkLine
Weasel
Posts: 33
Joined: Sat Mar 23, 2019 5:41 pm

First and Second Edition

Postby ChalkLine » Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:24 am

I'm trying to see if there's career expansion books for Traveller v2.

However I can't tell on DriveThru which edition is which. I got fooled the first time I went there and bout the first edition stuff when I wanted second edition, DriveThru doesn't differentiate between the two.

is there anywhere that has a clear list of version and version two books? I've looked about and most don't make the distinction.
ChalkLine
Weasel
Posts: 33
Joined: Sat Mar 23, 2019 5:41 pm

Re: First and Second Edition

Postby ChalkLine » Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:29 am

Just found it on the Mongoose site; the place I should have gone to first.

Odd that version two never had those career books, but with the propensity for version one to make unviable characters I guess they didn't want to go there again.
Saladman
Stoat
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Location: down on the West coast

Re: First and Second Edition

Postby Saladman » Thu Jun 06, 2019 4:52 pm

You're underestimating the compatibility of 1e and 2e. You can use the original career books with 2e with very little problem, and deal with any skill discrepancies on the fly.

What do you mean by "unviable characters"?
ShawnDriscoll
Cosmic Mongoose
Posts: 2935
Joined: Sun Dec 13, 2009 6:13 pm

Re: First and Second Edition

Postby ShawnDriscoll » Thu Jun 06, 2019 8:31 pm

I just mix MgT1 and MgT2 together. You can always make your own careers as well.
NOLATrav
Banded Mongoose
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Re: First and Second Edition

Postby NOLATrav » Thu Jun 06, 2019 9:13 pm

I also mix 1e and 2e materials quite freely, I especially like the old Spica Publishing Career Books.

I haven’t seen it but I understand the 2e Traveller Companion offers more char gen options, including quick build templates like Belter, Marine, etc as well as a point buy system.
ChalkLine
Weasel
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Re: First and Second Edition

Postby ChalkLine » Fri Jun 07, 2019 4:26 am

Saladman wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 4:52 pm
You're underestimating the compatibility of 1e and 2e. You can use the original career books with 2e with very little problem, and deal with any skill discrepancies on the fly.

What do you mean by "unviable characters"?
I just had a 'fun' experience Chargenning a Mongoose v1 PC, I was doing it for an online play-by-text game so every part had to be done via dice roller and logged and sent as PMs for each term. As such it takes about twenty minutes to finish just a term. Here's the logs:

Term 1
Branch: Scavenger - Wrecker
Qualification Roll (if needed): Automatic
Basic Training Skills: Athletics (any)-0, Mechanic-0, Melee (any)-0, Streetwise-0, Recon-0, Vacc Suit-0.
Term Skill: Pilot (Space Craft)-1
Survival: END 7+ FAILED
Mishap: You are forced to leave to help a friend. Gain an Ally.

Term 2
Branch: Scavenger - Tomb Robber
Qualification Roll (if needed): Automatic
Basic Training Skills: Stealth-0, Investigate-0, Any Science (any)-0, Security-0
Term Skill: Recon-1
Survival: FAILED
Mishap: You run into a dangerous criminal syndicate. Gain an Enemy.

Term 3
Branch: Scavenger-Salvage Expert
Qualification Roll (if needed): Automatic
Basic Training Skills: Sensors-0, Computer-0, Mechanic-0, Engineering-0, Space Sciences-0, Broker-0
Term Skill: Electronics-1
Survival: FAILED
Mishap: You are forced to leave to help a friend. Gain an Ally

Term 4
Branch: Scavenger - Tomb Robber.
Term Skill: Security-1
Survival: END 7+
Event: Crime: The character commits a crime, is accused of a crime, or is the victim of a crime. Lose one Benefit roll or reduce your
Social Standing by 1. -1 SOC
Advancement: DEX 7+
Advancement Skill (if advancement passed): Stealth-1
Ageing: No Effect

Term 5
Branch: Specialist: Wrecker
Qualification Roll (if needed): Automatic
Basic Training Skills: Advanced - Specialist: Wrecker
Term Skill: Pilot-2
Survival: END 7+
Event: Disaster! Roll on the Mishap table but you are not ejected from this career.
Mishap: You run into a dangerous criminal syndicate. Gain an Enemy
Advancement: FAILED
Ageing: Reduce one physical characteristic by 2, reduce two physical characteristic by 1

You can see the problem.
The repeated failures in terms 1, 2 and 3 meant that at that point I had had gained 3 skill points. Knowing I was going to fail I pushed on, trying to get at least a few more.
At term five I had 7 skill points but had lost 5 statistic points.

Now, I love my Traveller and I've been playing it since 1980. But frankly, the character generation system is nothing more than poor game design. You will hear legions of 'but I love that mini-game!' Fine, have your min game, but don't use it for something like character generation, I'm in this for the role playing.

- Rolled Statistics
Yes, they were designed when the hobby was new. I know The Traveller Companion has a point-buy system but it's odd to think that it took forty years. The real problem is that they've married random statistic system with a random survival system. So if you get good stats you may well lose them shortly later. It's a bit like an abusive relationship :)

- The 'Survival' Roll
This is the one I used to doggedly defend. But, from a design viewpoint it makes absolutely no sense. As it's always said you might be wasting your time and the likelihood of you failing increases with the amount of terms you have.
That's their idea of how to limit terms? Why not just say 'max five terms' instead of 'start again'?

- Events Table (Mongoose 1&2)
This I like, but it's placed after the survival roll. Most of the careers are fairly flavourless without this so this is what you look forward to, but if you had the situation like I just had where you fail three survival rolls one after the other you end up with one skill, no benefits and no texture to the PC.

- Short Terms
I know everyone scratches their head on this one. When LBBs came out skills were more like an area where you were exceptional, so while everyone had gun Combat-0 your skill in Derringer-3 showed you were remarkable on this. However, from MegaTraveller onward skills became skills and getting two skills in four years suggested you may have severe learning difficulties.

- Losing Statistics
This one flat out defies understanding. Looking back at my unfortunate PC who didn't survive three times straight. I had three skills so I persevered into term five which netted me a total of seven skill points, but due to ageing and a mishap I lost five statistic points. Now, this right there is a failed system. I was once a hard-as-nails GM but I can't see the point in actually damaging a player's character before the game even starts. I'm surprised getting a terminal disease isn't possible (although you can get a starship that falls apart in heavy wind!)

Now, that's actually the only part of character generation I don't like. So here is:

ChalkLine's Character Generation House Rules.

- Optional Point buy of 45 points. Otherwise use the Mongoose point buy system that is a bit more complicated
- Two Year duration terms
- No survival rolls
- GM mandated term limit
- Two skills automatically each term. Roll the first, choose the second
- Roll for commission/promotion as normal but do not allocate skills
- Muster out as normal.
Old School
Greater Spotted Mongoose
Posts: 817
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Re: First and Second Edition

Postby Old School » Fri Jun 07, 2019 2:42 pm

There was a thread last year about the career books, and Matt was pretty clear that there were no plans for 2nd edition career books. He believed the core book careers were sufficient, and wanted to focus on fewer, higher quality supplements rather than cranking out rehashes on a tight schedule. He did mention a new Mercenary Book that would be totally different than past iterations, but i haven't heard anything recently.

I didn't like that answer at the time, but looking at the quality of their recent 2nd edition stuff as compared to first edition, I've come full circle. A lot of what is in the first edition career books is poor quality fluff. And if you don't like the mini-game with the core careers, you definitely won't like it with the 1st edition career books, because the survival and promotion rolls have a much higher average difficulty.

I like a few of the career book options, and I like a few of the Spica Publishing careers as well (lots of overlap between Mongoose and Spica Career books). And more careers are always fun. I especially like the expanded event tables offered by both publishers. Those tables translate just fine to 2nd ed. Given limited resources, I'm glad Mongoose is putting its effort into new material instead.
ShawnDriscoll
Cosmic Mongoose
Posts: 2935
Joined: Sun Dec 13, 2009 6:13 pm

Re: First and Second Edition

Postby ShawnDriscoll » Fri Jun 07, 2019 9:31 pm

I prefer role-playing with a randomly generated Traveller any day.
Linwood
Lesser Spotted Mongoose
Posts: 583
Joined: Thu Jun 29, 2017 12:41 am

Re: First and Second Edition

Postby Linwood » Sat Jun 08, 2019 9:21 am

It’s not that hard to create your own careers. But what I’ve noticed is that the more you have, the more narrow they tend to become. Not a fan of that.

I’ve toyed with thoughts of a career system that would be more freeform. Maybe something focusing more on events? Haven’t come up with anything I really like yet.
Condottiere
Chief Mongoose
Posts: 7472
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Re: First and Second Edition

Postby Condottiere » Wed Jun 12, 2019 1:08 pm

This isn't either/or.

Randomization is a great way to createnon player characters, and prevent Mary Sueization for player characters.

It's an easy way to het inexperienced players up to speed, whether at the start of a campaign, or introducing them later on.

Having said that, experienced players should be allowed to opt for a crafted character if they have concept that they want to explore.

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