Traveller Release Schedule 2024

Designing Striker vehicle occupied an awful lot of my hoby time back in the day.

The only design system since that I have invested as much in is FF&S - which should be where to start doing a "proper" design manual.

All of these MgT slots, power factors, variable EPs, difference in scale, space call them what you will...

Use the engineering principles of FF&S to make a MgT FF&S, get that right, then simplify.
 
The Elephant in the room (or specifically, in the Setting) is the killer-app of the Third Imperium: Fusion Plus, or so T4 says.

With the design rules in the current Vehicle Handbook, even with a bunch of optimizations, I'm not getting more than a third of the range of the hovercraft from the original Sky Raiders (in contrast to that back-pack-sized toy computer). And as originally written, adventures like Twilight's Peak could never be done in an air/raft sized grav vehicle (yeah, it was assumed to be an ATV, but you get the idea - can't cross a planet with anything but an oversized vehicle).

So for a set of rules for vehicle design, there's a big fork for Fusion Plus. I put it in the updated CSC, but it sort breaks the robot rules, not to mention the vehicle ones...
 
The Elephant in the room (or specifically, in the Setting) is the killer-app of the Third Imperium: Fusion Plus, or so T4 says.

With the design rules in the current Vehicle Handbook, even with a bunch of optimizations, I'm not getting more than a third of the range of the hovercraft from the original Sky Raiders (in contrast to that back-pack-sized toy computer). And as originally written, adventures like Twilight's Peak could never be done in an air/raft sized grav vehicle (yeah, it was assumed to be an ATV, but you get the idea - can't cross a planet with anything but an oversized vehicle).

So for a set of rules for vehicle design, there's a big fork for Fusion Plus. I put it in the updated CSC, but it sort breaks the robot rules, not to mention the vehicle ones...
The problem with the vehicle Fusion is they are based on fission power plants which is counter dictating every other fusion power plant in the game. The ideal of ludicrous duration as being a reason to use them completely disregards the actual benefits of fusion (Safe fuel, more power to mass, safer operation). On top of that ignoring the TL improvements at 12 and 15. The book even counter dictates itself stating the fusion power vehicles become ubiquitous on pg 60 yet the author does everything to discourage this. If you do the numbers using any other fusion power plant in the books you find out the over 90% of the volume of the vehicle power plant is fuel🙄. This is literally why the imperial gav tanks and APCs are 2.5 times the size in every other edition of Traveller.

Geir you’ve show a talent for keeping the other rule books in mind and keeping everything working together without massive counter dictations
 
Truth is a fusion power plant shouldn’t take any extra space and probably should have a duration of possibly a few weeks with an increase in cost. Possibly having a minor increase in duration something like TL8: 1week, TL12: 2weeks and TL15: 4 weeks with the cost actually decreasing also. This would make more sense when compared to all other fusion plants in the game and encourage fusion power ubiquitous at TL 12.
 
FF&S offers consistency.
Once you have done the hard work you can put out simpler design sequences - the QSD system for T4, the Shipbuilding book in Brilliant Lances etc.
No more guns designed by a design sequence tht don't match anything in the core rules or equipment book, vehicles that scale properly.
You may not want it, you probably have not bought FF&S for TNE or T4.

I and many like me would buy a MGT FF&S.
 
  • Like
Reactions: JNJ
Add another request for a Mongoose equivalent of FF&S - I've been wanting something of the sort (and occasionally voicing the request since High Guard was announced for MongTrav 1). By all means, have an intermediate-level construction process for those who want something more than the basic core rules process, but aren't prepared for the full gearhead process... but have it be based on that full process, and make that full process available for those who do have the interest.

Admittedly, now that the High Guard sequence is out for MongTrav/MongTrav 2, the market's been cannibalized... but it's definitely something that should be considered (and, hopefully, more than considered) for MongTrav 3.
 
I would like (and purchase) the complete set of updated and integrated design books, because my life allows me to buy things like that.
Unfortunately, it compensates by not giving me the time to fully build any thing. I made most of a single world using the fantastic World Builder's Handbook, but I've only had the chance to build a single world. I have finally read each of the sector guides, but I haven't even gotten all the way through High Guard (probably because I've been reading the sector guides).

TLDR: I would buy a completely revamped universal OTU thing-design suite, but I would get more use from several new sector books.
 
At lunch I took a brief gander at the pdfs for FF&S for TNE and T4 (in reverse order for whatever reason). Probably the first time I've looked at them at all since the '90s. Very similar in layout and concepts, which is good, but as much as I like that level of detail and rigor, I'm kind of in agreement with the people who say it's not their cup of tea. There is no 'easy button' or procedural examples, at least in my very quick skim, and there are things that I would want to do that aren't entirely apparent or obvious.

In my view, there should be three levels of complexity:

1. A CSC-style list of equipment with rules for proto and retro tech with advantages and disadvantages for not just tech level, but for things being cheaper (the 'generic' model) and more expensive (a premium version that accepts an advantage or two even without the TL increase - sort of another way to skin prototech, but with added performance versus features, if that makes any sense - I tossed a 'Finely Made Weapons' box in the Weapons section in the CSC). Maybe a 'level 0' catalogue with some of the variants prebuilt would be helpful as well.

2. A slot/space/ton method of putting things together - things from that list in #1. Call it Legos for building suits, robots, vehicles , or spacecraft - and buildings/bases for that matter. High Guard (especially the update) comes close to that.

3. An underlying FF&S design sequence for those who want to really customize stuff. All the things from #1 and #2 would be built by game developers using these procedures, but there would be little expectation than many players would be interested in doing the work. The weapon design rules from Mercenary are a subset of that sort of thing, though I strongly disagree with how gauss and laser receivers were done (my bias, but there it is).

The major change results from current version vehicles and robots specifically abstracting the half of the volume/mass/procedure that determines structure, power, locomotion, and fuel. It leads to some of the dysfunction, especially around things like fission and fusion power. Especially if you include Fusion Plus, which is rather canonical for the Third Imperium. But that abstraction breaks the link between these things and starship construction procedures and rules in High Guard.

Ideally it should be possible to kit-bash a VW minibus into a spaceship with the rules and an ample amount of duct type and welding. Ideally, damage rules and armour values should seamlessly support people, devices, robots, vehicles, and spacecraft.

But it would be a Major Version sort of thing. As I found out when trying a simplified 'make the suits make sense' process, right now, there is no obvious way to retrofit it into current equipment.

And yeah, throwing out an Alpha version of #3 for people to pick apart would be a useful way to address issues, oversights, and author biases.

But that's just my opinion. Various work, family, and health issues have me stalled on the project I'm supposed to be working on, and this would be a year-long sort of thing for sure, even if I get past those hurdles. (Yeah I'm good for a bunch of forum posts, but that's way different than a concentrated writing effort.)

That's my 2 cents (or whatever it is in farthings).
 
I disagree with you on this one Geir. What FF&S needed was to come with a spreadsheet with all the design sequences entered into it already so GMs and players could simply follow the text and design what it was they needed for their game.
We eventually did that ourselves, through the good work of numerous TMLers.
I can still sit down and design a grav tank using Antti's spreadsheet (modified a little by me and others) in less than 15 minutes. I can even get stats to use with Striker-2 if I need them, or just stats for TNE or T4 roleplaying. I can design a starship in similar time. I can design a new gun in five minutes, and get all the game stats and allow my players to buy it.
Similarly, for CT, I can use the fan-created Striker spreadsheets to design anything related to ground combat.
 
I admire your commitment @Geir

I can attest writing books is hard work. Very hard work.

I am beginning to understand the complexities each book has both introduced and attempted to address. A common framework across all tech should address consistency issues - a huge task which has no commercial value but underpins everything. In the mean time, people want more content, toys and “stuff”, so consistency suffers.

I suspect there’s little appetite for developing a common framework unless a 3rd edition is being planned as this is where the most benefit will be seen. Attempting to retrofit a common framework into 2nd edition would be far too invasive and disruptive.
 
Economies of scale.

Diminishing returns.

Why all power plants aren't equal.

Also, alternatives, say jump drive composition.
 
I disagree with you on this one Geir. What FF&S needed was to come with a spreadsheet with all the design sequences entered into it already so GMs and players could simply follow the text and design what it was they needed for their game.
We eventually did that ourselves, through the good work of numerous TMLers.
I can still sit down and design a grav tank using Antti's spreadsheet (modified a little by me and others) in less than 15 minutes. I can even get stats to use with Striker-2 if I need them, or just stats for TNE or T4 roleplaying. I can design a starship in similar time. I can design a new gun in five minutes, and get all the game stats and allow my players to buy it.
Similarly, for CT, I can use the fan-created Striker spreadsheets to design anything related to ground combat.
A spread sheet isnt to professional standards. What this is really saying, is that FF&S shouldnt be a book, but an app.
 
It should be both. or even all three. Book first, a spreadsheet to go along with it then an app or several apps.

Remember how Traveller was a generic game? The technology in FF&F wasn't all intended for the OTU. You could make a generic shipbuilding app, vehicle app etc. These may well sell to the wider audience.

When TNE was in development they got FF&S to a usable state before making up equipment for the rpg.

Currently in MgT we have a ship design system, a robot design system, a vehicle design system, several world design systems, several sector exploration systems, a weapon design system that can not reproduce the weapons in the CRB or other supplements.
 
Please note that release dates listed here are expected PDF releases and pre-order dates - printed editions will likely appear 3-4 months later. Though we will be updating this particular post rather than appending more, you are welcome to make comments and ask questions in this thread!

February
Traveller Companion Update 2024:
A new release of the ever-popular Traveller Companion, this book has updated art and graphics throughout, plus a brand new chapter on vector-based space combat!

March
This is Free Trader Beowulf: A System History of Traveller:
Written by Shannon Appelcline, who has been researching this volume for some time, this book tells the story of Traveller from its inception to the modern day - all the twists and turns the game has taken, the people involved, and inspirations that shaped the longest running science-fiction RPG!

The Fifth Frontier War: Turmoil in the Spinward Marches begins here, with a deep and broad overview of the entire conflict.

April
Starship Operator's Manual:
Just picked up the access codes for your new ship and want to know how it really works? The Starship Operator's Manual is the essential companion for every free trader captain.

Flashpoints: This adventure takes place during the early phases of the Fifth Frontier War, in the Demilitarised Zone between Imperial and Zhodani space. Or at least, the Travellers are physically present in that area; their consciousness will spend some time elsewhere as a result of rather unusual circumstances.

May
Bounty Hunter:
Channel your inner Mandalorian with a new style of campaign - taking on contracts, hunting down your prey, and collecting the bounty on their heads! This book brings bounty hunting to your games, either as a dedicated campaign where Travellers become bounty hunters during their careers, or as a 'bolt-on' supplement to existing campaigns where Travellers fancy trying their hands at something new.

Legend of the Sky Raiders
Pioneer
Singularity
2300AD: Invasion
2300AD: Building the Frontier
War Fleets of the Fifth Frontier War
FFW: Opening Moves
FFW: Riverland Front

As noted before, everything is subject to change and rescheduling, but all the titles above have either already been written and are undergoing layout, or are in some stage of writing!
The bounty hunter book sounds fun.
 
Back
Top