Alien Poll

Discuss the Traveller RPG and its many settings

In a galactic wide setting, how many Advanced Life Forms would you find believable, besides Humanity?

None (Human kind are a complete fluke, it's just humanity versus the black void of space!)
2
4%
One (Besides Humanity)
0
No votes
Four (One advanced culture per quadrant of the galaxy)
2
4%
A dozen or so have made the leap into Space and thrived.
19
37%
The Galaxy is like a Sardine Can ( Life persists and evolves)
28
55%
 
Total votes: 51
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Alien Poll

Postby Dyrewulf » Thu Jun 05, 2008 5:48 pm

So I was just curious what you guys thought about the following when it comes to your own traveller settings...
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Re: Alien Poll

Postby tneva82 » Thu Jun 05, 2008 5:53 pm

Big galaxy and I don't see why Earth would be somehow special when it comes to life. It might not be life as we know it but plenty of room for alien life out there ;-)

Plus I like the colour they add to traveller setting.
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Postby sirpedro » Thu Jun 05, 2008 6:09 pm

Tthere's just to many stars and planets out there for us to be alone, besides whats a good sci fi game without other intelligent critters.
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Postby rust » Thu Jun 05, 2008 6:20 pm

Currently there are six intelligent alien races in my setting. Three of them
are bound to their homeworlds, and one of them has left its homeworld
and disappeared from sight, leaving only some relics behind.

I think that about a dozen intelligent alien races, plus some "uplifted" Ter-
ran species (dolphins, great apes), is just right for my setting.

However, I would not at all be surprised if there were many, many more
intelligent species in our galaxy.
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Postby Golan2072 » Thu Jun 05, 2008 6:44 pm

On the galaxy-scale, there would probably be quite a number of sentient species, as life is probably common and the galaxy has a huge number of planets, so even if a small portion of life-bearing worlds eventually develop sentient life, you'll still get a large number of sentients.

In my non-OTU ATU (9 sectors at most, and except for the central one the rest are almost unexplored by humans, and even the central one is 1/4 core and 3/4 frontier or semi-frontier), there would probably be four live and active alien races in addition to Humans (and to uplifts, probably dolphins and maybe raccoons), two of them actually terragen (Celirans and another species of similar origins), one really alien and from the semi-close neighborhood and one really alien and from quite afar. In addition to these, several interstellar civilizations have existed in this space in the past, and are now extinct; their ruins still exist in one form or another. There were also races that have destroyed themselves in nuclear wars or similar disasters before achieving interstellar flight. However, as I might end up following the "one sophont race per sector" guideline there might be a few more "minor races" around...
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Postby Dyrewulf » Thu Jun 05, 2008 7:17 pm

Some great ideas here...
I of course believe that there are many "self-aware" beings within our galaxy and that if there is a planet capable of housing life, it will persist and grow and advance.
I am really just trying to look at the norm and get a feel for what the fans and gms are looking for in a setting...what we all find exciting when it comes to alien life.
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Postby Rikki Tikki Traveller » Thu Jun 05, 2008 8:28 pm

I use rare intelligence to avoid the problem of "If interstellar empires are so common, why hasn't 21st Century Earth been contacted?"

I use the following base lines:

1 in 100 worlds have intelligence, 1 in 10 of them are Technological (TL4+) and 1 in 100 of them is Spacefaring with about 1 in 10 of them being Interstellar. That works out to be about 1 starfaring race per 15 Sectors. Not quite a Sardine Can, but more than 12 per galaxy.

REALLY spreads out the races, but still has them there.

I also use lots of Geneered and Uplifted species.
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Postby Nickbergquist » Thu Jun 05, 2008 10:23 pm

In my own ATU I surmise that there are plenty of sapient species, but only 4 besides humanity are technologically advanced and in space, although the relics of dead civilizations that made it spaceward can be found all over the place (about 30 recorded). Part of the overarching mystery of the campaign is exactly why, when new species make it in to space, they seem to go extinct within one to two thousand years at most....

That said, I tend to operate on the premise that "where life can evolve, it absolutely will evolve." Intelligence, on the other hand, is a whole different affair, but since it's an RPG, I like to liberally sprinkle sapient species around for fun and adventure....

EDIT: I also use the premise of "FTL travel is very, very difficult to achieve" as the limiting factor in why contact with other species is rare, until FTL becomes possible.
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Postby -Daniel- » Fri Jun 06, 2008 3:08 am

I can not imagine that Earth is the only place that life exists in one form or another. Now what that life is like, I admit I do not know. But I hope it is smarter then we are and I would like to meet them.

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Postby AKAramis » Fri Jun 06, 2008 8:56 am

I know that a Pope believed we weren't the only intelligent life out here...

Seriously, I think probably 3-5 dozens in a galaxy is about right... the OTU is overdense, with 6 in about 0.5% of the 2D galaxy....

but clustering really isn't that big a deal, either...
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Postby Dyrewulf » Tue Jun 10, 2008 3:49 pm

I would have liked to have heard the person's point of view that voted for humanity being a fluke. Would have made for good conversation...
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Postby GypsyComet » Thu Jun 12, 2008 1:14 am

"The Galaxy is like a Sardine Can ( Life persists and evolves)"

If you are finding ongoing life and evolution in a can of sardines, I would recommend another brand...
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Postby Dyrewulf » Thu Jun 12, 2008 3:35 pm

GypsyComet wrote: If you are finding ongoing life and evolution in a can of sardines, I would recommend another brand...
What is wrong with sardines? or the cans they come in? the sardine cans are packed full of fishy goodness!
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Postby daryen » Thu Jun 12, 2008 9:00 pm

Dyrewulf wrote:I would have liked to have heard the person's point of view that voted for humanity being a fluke. Would have made for good conversation...
I won't vote that humanity is a "fluke". However, it seems completely reasonable if humanity is effectively the only intelligent life.

The entire history of known intelligent, interstellar life in the OTU is much less than half a million years. That is an eye-blink in the scale of the age of the galaxy. So, even if there are other intelligent lifeforms in our galaxy, the odds of any of them being between rudimentary sentience and transcendance/death at the same time we are very, very minimal.

So, voting for only humanity doesn't mean there are no other intelligent races, only that humanity won't meet them.
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Postby rje » Thu Jun 12, 2008 10:08 pm

A dozen or less spacefaring races. A larger number of planetbound ones. And generally, life is "everywhere".
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Postby Dyrewulf » Thu Jun 12, 2008 11:35 pm

daryen wrote: The entire history of known intelligent, interstellar life in the OTU is much less than half a million years. That is an eye-blink in the scale of the age of the galaxy. So, even if there are other intelligent lifeforms in our galaxy, the odds of any of them being between rudimentary sentience and transcendance/death at the same time we are very, very minimal.
I can't remember where it was released but there are some scientists out there that feel that the Milky Way is in it's "twilight" for intelligent, space faring races...that humanity could very well be the last of the infants.

So having read that, I can agree with you on that argument...as far as sentient, space faring races...but...the chances that there aren't more out there is pretty good.
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