The core problem with playable races is that they have to be playable. That makes it very hard to move them far from the human mindset, because they are being played by humans. NPC only races are much easier to make inhuman, because the author or Referee only needs to play them in short bursts and, generally, in scenes that they are somewhat expecting.OK, going all the way back to the OP here...
If I ever decide to do a Not Charted Space Traveller game, the Pentapods are DEFINITELY gonna be part of it. Including the Kaefer would really depend on how gun happy the PC group is. I'm hoping that the upcoming 2300 Invasion boxed set will expand on the wonderful work of The Kafer Sourcebook instead of just condensing it as the Aliens of Charted Space series does.
If I were to ever design a Major Race, I have more of an idea of what I DON'T want than what I do want:
- No human in a fuzzy suit tropes
- No 'hawt' bimbos with blasters
- A culture that isn't based on historical Earth tropes [aka 'Aslan = Thundercat samurai']
- A culture with enough depth that they have to be taken as they are, not as a meme, trope, or StarTrek/Wars equivalent
All this is based off of several previous attempts to introduce minor races in Traveller games that players weren't interested in learning about. I don't know, maybe it's a lack of imagination on my part but I've come up with ideas in the past that I thought were worthwhile and other PCs though were dumb.
How do we know about Florian biology? is this in the JTAS Vol 4 that I haven't got round to reading?
The core problem with playable races is that they have to be playable. That makes it very hard to move them far from the human mindset, because they are being played by humans. NPC only races are much easier to make inhuman, because the author or Referee only needs to play them in short bursts and, generally, in scenes that they are somewhat expecting.
A player playing a genuinely alien race has to be able to be in that mindset all the time, in every situation. That is extremely difficult. Which is why you have races like the Aslan get turned into Thundercat samurai, when that is not at all what they were written like originally. Even if you don't give an alien a 'hat', players will tend to do so so they have a grasp of how they are supposed to act.
I thought that Aliens of Charted Space had some good ideas [the Patriarchy skill, etc.] but I really thought they glossed over some of the deficits of the species.The k'kree i think are the best attempt at this in the OTU, but they are hobbled to the point of ineffectiveness, and ignored by most. Of course, thats justified - people playing a game often dont want alien, dont want different. And making believably different without radically upsetting the balance of the 3I, is very difficult - arguably far more difficult than playing a truly slien character, let alone playing one for a single session.
Thanks, I have it and have read it. It's over a decade since I last read it!It was specified at length in GURPS Traveller: Humaniti, and was otherwise touched on prior to that (I believe) though I do not remember the particular references off hand. It is in MgT2 JTAS Vol 4.
Thanks, I have it and have read it. . . .
I have also read JTAS Vol4 from Mongoose and have a good overview.
They don't fully agree, especially on physionomy, and as such I am comfortable to start MTU with various alternate hypotheses and let my players explore and discover through play what is correct.
NOW.. a new Major Race..
Kaefer are IMHO are a bit of a one trick pony, and I can't see them having developed jump capable space ships. Indeed maybe they are am abandoned Ancients bioengeered army that has woken, maybe even from a pocket dimension ...
NOW.. a new Major Race..
Well I loved the Pentapods and regretted that they were never well developed. I can see a potential conflict between them and the Hivers.. one manipulates societies and the other manipulates biology.. so I might place them Trailing of the Hivers and even bordering the K'Kree. Fully organic space ships, maybe with a very variant way to access jump space.. but not breaking the core parameters.
NOW.. a new Major Race..
My favourite candidate is definitely a Machine People. Not from Humaniti, maybe from another alien culture that the Ancients crushed (how about the snail ship aliens from SoA)? They can also state that they are a Major Race since they developed jump capable ships for their masters before they rebelled, but other might argue that they were dumb non sentient computers then ...
.. so I might place them Trailing of the Hivers and even bordering the K'Kree. Fully organic space ships, maybe with a very variant way to access jump space.. but not breaking the core parameters.
Any introduction of a Major Race is gonna bugger up the balance of power in Charted Space one way or another. This is why I suggest having you own sector away from Charted Space to do your own thing.
Which file has the hand drawn map? I can't find it on my disc.
The one in Leonidas Sector? I believe that's the approximate location of the Dynchia.On the original hand-drawn map of Charted Space (found in the files of the MT CD from FFE), there is on the far trailing edge of Hiver Space what appears to be the coreward edge of another polity about a sector in size (from the edge of it that can be seen - it could be much larger) in Kolire Sector. It would be interesting to place something "out there" that maybe the Imperium isn't entirely familiar with (or which the Hivers don't really want anyone else to know about) that might be a significant polity or species. They still might not be "Major" in the technical sense:
- Maybe they got their Jump drive from another Major Race or one of its subject races (such as Hive Federation traders).
- Maybe they expanded by STL means (generation ships or sleeper ships) and have an STL (but otherwise very advanced) empire.
- Maybe they have immense lifespans (and different perceptions of time) and do not need or care about FTL travel within their territory.
- Maybe they have developed an alternative form of FTL (perhaps inferior to Jump * , perhaps not) and therefore are not "technically" Major, since it isn't a Jump drive.* - Perhaps an inferior form of stutterwarp that operates at 1/100 the efficiency of the stutterwarp of the 2300AD Universe. This would make it inferior to Jump-1 in terms of travel time, and the tunnelling-distance "drop-off" in the outer system would be so severe as to still require a secondary maneuvering-drive for in-system travel. But it still would allow interstellar travel at pseudo-velocities far superior to high-speed relativistic transits or light-speed.
The one in Leonidas Sector? I believe that's the approximate location of the Dynchia.
There's some 'give' in the location of Melantris [Dynchia homeworld] because two 'official' sources put it in two different spots.