Shandukan

SheliakBob

Mongoose
So, having just bought pretty much all of the major race sourcebooks in a recent binge (oh, the sweet joy of tax refunds!), I thought I'd take another stab at putting together a B5 campaign.

The idea I'm currently toying with would have the pc's being mostly members of a Centauri minor noble house who've been given the "favor" of reclaiming and refurbishing an old merchant station that was built but then abandoned in the Shandukan system, back before the Narns gained independence. The noble house was to have taken over the station and established a foothold in the region for further expansion, but then things sort of fell apart. The family's been headquartered on Jux Prime ever since.
One night, while out enjoying a "Cratering Party" (jaded residents on Jux Prime welcome each asteroid fall that doesn't endanger their lives with a sort of outdoor debut for the crater. Picnic and drinks and oooh's and aaaah's when the big flash comes, followed by polite "golf-claps".) The nobles get talked around to the topic of the Shandukan derelict station, one thing leads to another, and they get "volunteered" for the "honor" of taking back the derelict. (they'll wake up the next day to learn that their "boon request" was approved by the Jux Prime governor and has the Emperor's personal commendation! ....now. what "boon" did we ask for after that eighth drink?...)

Shandukan is listed as a Neutral occupied system. I see the Lumati and the Drazi being the main "players" in local politics with lots of Pak'ma'ra sort of hanging around the system. The Lumati will be the cryptic but genial nominal allies while the Drazi are the main antagonists. (There are Narn instigators behind the Drazi, of course, but that's for later.)
The Grome and the Hurr both want the system, for no really good reasons, but are enough jumps away to be more nuisance than serious threat.
Melat, the Pak'ma'ra homeworld, is nearby, but not directly linked through the jumpgate. Now, with Melat's being a major source of Q-40, I can see smuggling and lots of underground marketeering, but only for those with access to jump capable ships. Or access to a less well-known way into the Melat system...

So. Um. Anyone got any info on the Shandukan system? I checked all my usual sources and came up blank.
Maybe something due in the Galactic Guide (which will at least have design help if not worked out details). I'm assuming that if there are stats for the Lumati, they'll be in "The Coming of the Shadows" with the episode info. (got that on order).

Anyway, I've got a week or two to start doing design work before there's any chance of playing. Any suggestions? Ideas?
 

Greg Smith

Mongoose
The Galactic Guide does have details on Shandukan.

It is a barey habitable world claimed by the Centauri, but raiders used it as a hide-out. After 2262 a jump route was opened to the Lumati and it became accesible by 4 races and it became a trading post and experienced a population expansion.
 

mthomason

Mongoose
Two months ago I'd have killed for a copy of the Galactic Guide.

Actually now I think about it, I still would...
 

Greg Smith

Mongoose
Please don't kill me! :cry:

I know that you know where I live, because I buy stuff from you. Kill someone else who has it instead.... yeah that's it, kill LBH instead. :twisted:
 

lastbesthope

Mongoose
What exactly have I done to deserve all the hostility directed at me since the tournament?

It's not like I won or anything!

LBH
 

SheliakBob

Mongoose
Heh. Yeah. The Galactic Guide looks like a must-have. Once I've gotten "The Coming of the Shadows" and "The Zocalo", I'll move it up to the next purchase to be made.
Things are looking good for the early design stage of "Shandu Station: The Series". The main challenge I'm facing is due to the style of gaming I want to pursue. I want to give the PC's a list of their resources, tell them the mission, and then turn them loose. They'll have to decide how many personnel they're going to hire and what sorts they'll need. They'll have to select their equipment and decide who to bribe. They'll need to establish contacts etc.
Right off, I can see that entry level (first level) characters simply won't cut it. They'll get eaten alive! Now, I could start with boosted character levels, but I hate to do that for various reasons. What I'm considering is borrowing the "Noble" character class from WOTC's Star Wars and the Farscape game, tweaking a wee bit to make it in line with B5's systems, then give them 3 or 4 levels of "Noble" to represent their time spent in the social arenas on Jux Prime. They'd have only 1st level in their main professions, to represent that they're novices and neos once they're outside their home court.
Next I've got to set their budget and allot resources. That's going to be much harder to do.
I'm setting Jux Prime as having a fairly standard "Castle Formation" system defense fleet and a garrison that leans toward the high mid level range given in the Centauri book. That'll define what resources are within call and what commanders they may be able to sway or enlist.
 

redlaco

Mongoose
Wow, SheliakBob, this looks like a nice campaign!

Your idea to convert the noble class from SW is awesome, considering the PCs will be Centauri. I feel it will adequately represent their innate sense of "political warfare".

Really promising; I hope you will keep us posted on further developments.
 

SheliakBob

Mongoose
argh. I was looking over the back issues of Signs and Portents, thanks to the article index, and discovered an issue that contains a totally yummy and altogether useful looking article, but the online store lists #6 as "NA".

Anyone got access to "Serving the House" that can tell me if it's as useful as it looks? Know another source for Signs and Portents back issues?
 

Chobbly

Mongoose
SheliakBob said:
argh. I was looking over the back issues of Signs and Portents, thanks to the article index, and discovered an issue that contains a totally yummy and altogether useful looking article, but the online store lists #6 as "NA".

Anyone got access to "Serving the House" that can tell me if it's as useful as it looks? Know another source for Signs and Portents back issues?

I really liked the Serving the House article, particularly the Facilitator Prestige Class. It really seemed appropriate to have a class for those supporting others in their bid for glory, hanging off the coat-tails of a more vocal and charismatic figure. The other Prestige Class is a great idea to spring on unwary Players as well...

I found the issue a good read (the Crusader Power Class especially), but if you're just after that article, it's on on rpgnow:

http://www.rpgnow.com/product_info.php?products_id=4055&


Chobbly
 

Greg Smith

Mongoose
MongooseIan3.5 said:
Greg Smith said:
Please don't kill me! :cry:

I know that you know where I live, because I buy stuff from you. Kill someone else who has it instead.... yeah that's it, kill LBH instead. :twisted:

Isn't it LBO now?

Yes. But I didn't want to hurt his feelings. :roll:
 

lastbesthope

Mongoose
SheliakBob said:
argh. I was looking over the back issues of Signs and Portents, thanks to the article index, and discovered an issue that contains a totally yummy and altogether useful looking article, but the online store lists #6 as "NA".

The NA refers to the ISBN, as in it doesn't have one. It seems to be in stock as far as I can tell from the Mongoose website, maybe you should email Mark Humphries mhumphries@mongoosepublishing.com and ask him if it's in stock.

And it's LBH, no vowels whatsoever! :x

LBH
 

Aramanthus

Mongoose
SOunds like and interesting campaign! I agree with others on that. Please post the way it actually plays out as it goes along.
 

SheliakBob

Mongoose
Thanks for the help with the Signs and Portents article. Since it was actually available from Mongoose, I just ordered the issue. (Hey, I love the Judge Dredd game too! Might as well soak in all the juicy gamey goodness the mag has to offer!)

With some tinkering, I've decided that I'm going to give the players the option of taking 1-3 levels of "Noble" class (which will give any of them from the main PC House 1 Favor each to call in and possibly the "Inspiring Speech"/Oratory Feat. ). They'll need Noble as a beginning feat and Independently Wealthy would be a darn good idea! At least for the nominal House leader.
Then I'll allow them to select B5 game classes. The mix I'm looking at is 2 lvls of Noble with 1 level in 2 B5 Classes or 2 lvls of Noble with 2 lvls in 1 B5 Class, or 3 lvls of Noble with 1 level in a B5 Class. That should make them viable as potential players running their own station, but novice enough to allow for all manner of slip ups and disasters.

I still need a good way to quantify the resources of a minor Noble House. It'll cost them 100,000 crs per month to maintain the station once they have it up and running. That's not including cost of hiring/paying personnel, equipping them, and probably paying for some sort of fighter cover, bribes to locals etc. etc. etc.
I'm leaning toward making the House a nominal governing body for one of the cities on Jux Prime (Vientaro has a nice name!). Next I might have to calculate the likely population of that city (750,000 planetwide with 75,000 of them living in rural areas--four major cities, say, um, 'bout 150,000 for the PC's city). Then I'll have to work out some sort of tax base, income level percentages, costs for local facilities and properties, deduct out what share can be used for the venture....

argh.

Any chance there's a handy dandy random Centauri Noble House generator table floating around out there somewhere? pleeeeez?

sigh.

On the plus side, I've sketched out about the first two or three sessions. The PC's will have to put together their expedition to activate the station. (I have to expect them to do a quick scouting run visit first, before committing to expenses and getting surprised, but ya' never know.)
The station itself has been derelict for about a hundred years or so and it's surrounded by a formidable minefield. If they think to look, they'll find the minefield activation/deactivation codes, along with the station activation codes, buried in the Family Archive.
Once there, they'll have to get through the mines, discover wrecks from vessels that have tried to run the field over the past century, gain access to the station, and then try to boot up the station equipment.
I doubt that I can resist having some Lurkers already squatting aboard, in the "down below" equivalent. Maybe Pak'ma'ra refugees? Criminals? Maybe something more "exotic"? hmmm....

next question!

Is there a miniature, or a counter, or something with what the Centauri civilian trade station roughly looks like? If I have a general shape, at least, I'll have somewhere to start with doing floorplans or general sketch-maps. Unless, of course, someone already has a floorplan available?

So much to do, so little time!!
 

SheliakBob

Mongoose
Ah. The Internet!
Found the image for the Ragesh station. That ought to do as a basic design template. Two main decks in the middle, then equipment above and below, sort of cubic in design. Very easy to map out on grid paper!
The universe can be so kind, sometimes!
 

Kizarvexis

Mongoose
SheliakBob said:
The station itself has been derelict for about a hundred years or so and it's surrounded by a formidable minefield. If they think to look, they'll find the minefield activation/deactivation codes, along with the station activation codes, buried in the Family Archive.
Once there, they'll have to get through the mines, discover wrecks from vessels that have tried to run the field over the past century, gain access to the station, and then try to boot up the station equipment.
I doubt that I can resist having some Lurkers already squatting aboard, in the "down below" equivalent. Maybe Pak'ma'ra refugees? Criminals? Maybe something more "exotic"? hmmm....

Well in modern times a minefield doesn't last long if it is not defended. I would expect this trend to continue into the future. So, if it was my campaign, the players would have to evict the current residents first. A nice House fleet should make short work of raiders (the likely tenants), although if the players want to keep the base intact, it might be a little harder on them. ;) For more fun, the raiders could be supported by the Narn Regime to pull in that thread too.

My two ducats. :)

Kizarvexis
 
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