Not Impressed with MGT Preview #4

Discuss the Traveller RPG and its many settings
TrippyHippy
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Postby TrippyHippy » Mon Apr 14, 2008 8:07 am

Metamorphosis Alpha still sells.
Outtasight!
Tathlum
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Postby Tathlum » Mon Apr 14, 2008 2:42 pm

*quick Google search*

So it does. Have a cookie. How big does MA say a dTon is? :wink:
TrippyHippy
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Postby TrippyHippy » Mon Apr 14, 2008 4:51 pm

T'was nominated by Gary Gygax for the 100 Greatest Hobby Games of all time. He felt that there wasn't anything quite like it, with all the other sci-fi games getting bogged down by extraneous issues like a good understanding of science, and the like. There's no accounting for taste, as I felt it...ah...wasn't all that good.

Fortunately Mike Pondsmith (of Cyberpunk fame) nominated Traveller, whilst Paranoia was nominated by Steve Jackson. Sanity restored.
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Tathlum
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Postby Tathlum » Tue Apr 15, 2008 9:19 am

So Mongoose, any news? Is the scale of deckplans 2mX2m? Are there not enough squares? Or is the difference considered to small to worry about (deckplan not blueprint, just roleplaying aid etc)? Or is the whole issue a misconception?
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Postby mwj258 » Wed Apr 16, 2008 8:05 pm

I have 5 problems with the drawing, design and floorplans in Preview 4.

1 The powerplant fuel use is inconsistant between the 2 ships. Both use a Type A power plant
Scout has 40-20 (Jump fuel) = 20 tons Pn fuel for 10 weeks = 2 tons per week
Seeker has 24-20 (Jump fuel) = 4 tons Pn fuel for 4 weeks = 1 ton per week

OK which is correct?

2 Both floorplans have an air-raft hanger but only the Scout ship has one in it's design.

3 The cost of the seeker is incorrect as written.
Total the componants of the Scout = 30.045MCr x.9 = 27.0405MCr (MCr = Million Credits)
Total the componants of the Seeker= 28.895MCr x.9 = 26.00555MCr cost written 22.7655MCr = 78.78% not 90%

4 Why keep the CT fuel capacity of 40 tons, just to match the CT design? Using 26 tons and making the other 14 tons cargo would have made for a much more useful design, allowing space for mission specific equipment, such as computers, labs, extra fuel for J2+J1, extra staterooms.

5 For me the outlines of the floorplans and the picture dont match. I see some major discrepences. The bridge on the floorplans is too far forward, and there is no matching exit for the air-raft in the picture.

Now points 1-3 are specific design errors and hopefully will be spotted in proof reading.
I accept points 4 + 5 are more personal, but I was under the impression MGT was going to clean up the problems, errors and misprints of the past versions of Traveller, not regurgitate them.

Overall the previews have a negative effect on my expectations for MGT.

Regards
Mark
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Postby far-trader » Wed Apr 16, 2008 8:22 pm

As I understand it from the posts on CotI the drawing, design, and floorplans were all done by different people. And the design changed between being assigned to the floorplanner and the preview without the floorplanner being told of the change. It appears there was no coordination between the different contributors and not enough proofing done by the editor before putting it out. There was also an error in the dimensions between the floorplans and the standards usually used which caused some confusion.

I can't speak to the specifics of the design as I'm not familiar with the rules used.
Dan "far-trader" Burns

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Samvail1
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Postby Samvail1 » Thu Apr 17, 2008 6:44 am

As far as I can see whilst following this thread, most of the problem areas are because an editor has been editing the text and not calculating the math.

That sort of thing is outside the normal remit of an editor. Perhaps it would be in Mongooses best interests to utilise the fan-base and get some of the vocal complainers to design the ships/plans for them.


Sam
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Postby Rikki Tikki Traveller » Thu Apr 17, 2008 1:31 pm

Hold on there Mister!

I DON'T want to WORK on the designs! I just want to COMPLAIN about the designs! :twisted:

(removes tongue from cheek).
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You can call me Sir.
rust
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Postby rust » Thu Apr 17, 2008 1:56 pm

Yep, exactly. Being a long-time Traveller fan grants the permission to
complain about each and every detail of each and every Traveller pro-
duct, with or without any reason for complaining - so is the law. :twisted:

Actually working on Traveller products would lead fans to severe psy-
chological disorders, because they would then have to complain about
their own creations. Moreover, they would have to attack and defend
themselves at the same time in the forums - a nightmare. :shock:

No, let everyone continue what he / she can do best: Fans complain,
designers work ! :D
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Postby -Daniel- » Thu Apr 17, 2008 2:09 pm

I would be happy with just a brief statement from Mongoose. Any statement about how they see things in this case. I think these minor issues blow up way to much because when folks lack real answers they attempt to create them on their own.

As for being asked to do a design, great. I would love to. But they did not ask me so I must resign myself to just looking at what they have done.

Daniel
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Postby klingsor » Thu Apr 17, 2008 2:50 pm

As long as we do not get a complete F**kup like Serenity. That was pretty, and had several very nice features - a brilliantly written technology chapter (by a Traveller gearhead I understand) and very attractive deckplans ( though I might quibble about them otherwise) but suffered from some odd basic assumptions about the setting and most importantly absolutely appalling editing so bad that you could not produce any of the ships using the book rules and oh yes, a combat system that was unusable, verging on the incomprehensible. Dare I mention no index and no character sheet?
I know this is a dog I have kicked before but it is one that deserves a kick every chance you get. The best thing about it are the fans who continue to struggle to make a silk purse from a sow's ear.

Though the best example of bad editing lies closer to home with Fire, Fusion and Steel Second Edition for the ill-fated Marc Miller’s Traveller (T4). It was unusable and was published in a form that simply should not have been published. The errata list was nearly as long as the book but at least it lacked the irrelevant and inappropriate Foss covers that plagued the line.
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Postby AKAramis » Thu Apr 17, 2008 4:04 pm

klingsor wrote:As long as we do not get a complete F**kup like Serenity. That was pretty, and had several very nice features - a brilliantly written technology chapter (by a Traveller gearhead I understand) and very attractive deckplans ( though I might quibble about them otherwise) but suffered from some odd basic assumptions about the setting and most importantly absolutely appalling editing so bad that you could not produce any of the ships using the book rules and oh yes, a combat system that was unusable, verging on the incomprehensible. Dare I mention no index and no character sheet?
I know this is a dog I have kicked before but it is one that deserves a kick every chance you get. The best thing about it are the fans who continue to struggle to make a silk purse from a sow's ear.

Though the best example of bad editing lies closer to home with Fire, Fusion and Steel Second Edition for the ill-fated Marc Miller’s Traveller (T4). It was unusable and was published in a form that simply should not have been published. The errata list was nearly as long as the book but at least it lacked the irrelevant and inappropriate Foss covers that plagued the line.
Serenity RPG also lacks any real guidance on trade and commerce, beyond a contrite "Here's the costs for fuel and the range of prices for passages".

FF&S, neé, T4, strongly deserves to be forgotten as a line due to its incredibly low standards.

Mongoose can and should do better than either; do they have the will to do so?
-AKAramis
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klingsor
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Postby klingsor » Thu Apr 17, 2008 7:02 pm

I certainly hope so - otherwise we would not be here.

We keep the flame
Gruffty the Hiver
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Postby Gruffty the Hiver » Thu Apr 17, 2008 7:22 pm

I am very much of the "see a problem, solve a problem" mindset.

So, in this case, perhaps someone with the necessary computer/graphics skills could get together/liaise with someone who has the necessary ship design skills to produce a completely accurate deckplan and ship design, which they could then send to Mongoose?.....

...just a thought from your local friendly Hiver... :wink:
Emperor Herdan
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Postby Emperor Herdan » Thu Apr 17, 2008 8:04 pm

I'll take a stab at it but it'll be a wee while as CC3 and Cosmo is what I had on my HD before it went belly up (and will be again once I get the new machine). {CC3 is Campaign Cartographer 3, Cosmo is the "space" subset of it}

Once I finish off an adventure (that oddly enough requires some deckplans) I'll take whack at it.

I'm planning on using 1dton = 14m^3 (or 2 1.5x1.5x3 m squares) rather than 1dton =500 cf (well 480 by my calculations... but whos quibbling)

I might send them onto Mongoose for publishing in magazine (with maybe a write up of each ship)

Hmmm Eyeore moment... Would have to revamp them after High Guard got released... Ohh welll...

Take care

E. Herdan
Old Man of the C (for Cyclotrons....Smashing Atoms for fun and profit...ohh and medical and industrial use...)
jonboywalton
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Postby jonboywalton » Fri Apr 18, 2008 3:05 am

I'm one of those who came to Traveller with the LBBs. There's a lot of us out there who hve been playing for an awlfully long time (actually I took a circumstance-enforced break from gaming for nearly twenty years in the middle, and came back to it about five years ago). It would be an oversimplification to say that there are two camps - (unthinking) gamers and gearheads - but there does seem to be a spectrum between these extremes in which most of us fall.

Let me say at the outset that I have the greatest respect for gearheads, and I understand the compulsion to "get it right", but at the end of the day... I've just got bigger problems. RPGing is an escape for me, some time off from my daily cares, a chance for a little weekly R&R. I just want to play. I don't want to have to think about the kind of minutae involved in designing something from the ground up à la FF&S. If that's what floats your boat, more power to ya. Not my idea of fun.

For the record, I was a little disappointed when I saw the plans for the new Type-S - partly because it was smaller, mostly because the pointy corners had been knocked off it (it had literally been "dulled").

As for getting a precise representation of that the Type-S looks like? It's science fiction, guys. I like to think that the Mongeese are releasing a new edition of Traveller at least as much for a new generation of kids that have never played the Great Game as for the old curmudgeons who like nothing better than to argue about how many Ancients can dance on the head of a pin.

But that's just my opinion.
Success is not final; failure is not fatal - it is the courage to continue that counts.
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rust
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Postby rust » Fri Apr 18, 2008 8:14 am

It is my opinion, too - at least almost so. I am a kind of gearhead, and I
like world building, starship design, and all that stuff. But I am used to the
experience that something published does not fit my setting perfectly, and
therefore has to be changed. Well, and then I change it - no big thing.
In the case of the scout ship and seeker deck plans I would have to make
changes anyways, because my setting uses a hyperdrive, not a jump dri-
ve. :roll:
Supplement Four
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Postby Supplement Four » Fri Apr 18, 2008 2:57 pm

I am not a gearhead. I haven't built that many ships in my 23 years of Traveller. But, that doesn't mean I'll excuse something like the deckplan not being correct. I won't handwave a ship that is shown to be half the interior space that it should be and say, "Oh, it's just a game. No big deal. I can still use these plans to game upon."

It's a professional product I'm purchasing. I expect the quality to be professional. That means, when I see a deckplan that has a key reading 1.5m, and I know the combat scale for the game is 1.5m, then I expect the deckplan to accurately show me the interior of the vessel--especially when I've seen the author state that the design goal was to right the wrongs of the past with these new MGT deckplans.
rust
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Postby rust » Fri Apr 18, 2008 3:05 pm

Supplement Four wrote: It's a professional product I'm purchasing. I expect the quality to be professional.
Well, if these are your expectations, you must have been disappointed
very often during your 23 years of Traveller. :D

Frankly, I do not remember a single Traveller product which did not ha-
ve more or less serious problems of the kind you mentioned. :roll:
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Postby AKAramis » Fri Apr 18, 2008 5:16 pm

rust wrote:
Supplement Four wrote: It's a professional product I'm purchasing. I expect the quality to be professional.
Well, if these are your expectations, you must have been disappointed
very often during your 23 years of Traveller. :D

Frankly, I do not remember a single Traveller product which did not ha-
ve more or less serious problems of the kind you mentioned. :roll:
S4 has complained... Vociferously... about it over the years. On COTI, on the TML....

I, too, have complained. Both of us have, from time to time, made efforts to make our own works accurate, and pointed out errors when we thought it would do some good.

Not that he and I usually see eye-to-eye on much of anything... but on issues of professionalism, we seem fairly congruent.

I know my most recent A2 plan is messed up by about 4 tons of fuel/cargo... I'll fix it when I pick up my MoTrav core.

And not before. (But note: 4 tons IS within the 10% slop allowed for in canon.)
-AKAramis
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