Category Archives: Traveller

Anything about traveller.

Zhodani Base Awards 2020

2020 ZhobieWelcome to the Zhodani Base Awards 2020! 2020 has been a strange year. For Traveller products it was another good year. Lots of new stuff from the small publishers (and Mongoose).

The first category is “Best Cover“. The nominees are:

The winner of the “Best Cover” category of the Zhodani Base Awards 2020 is: Star Battles: Space Map Bundle from Jon Brazer Enterprises.

There were lots of Traveller products with nice covers this year. Lots of love for all nice covers. An image with a starship and hexes was a perfect cover for a product like this.

Next category is “Best Fanzine or Online Magazine“. The nominees are:

The winner of the “Best Fanzine/Online Magazine” category of the Zhodani Base Awards 2020 is: Freelance Traveller.

Freelance Traveller has once again proved that they are the best fanzine by publishing bimestrial issues with lots of good contents for free.

Freelance Traveller has won this category every year since 2011!

Next category is “Best Adventure“. The nominees are:

The winner of the “Best Adventure” category of the Zhodani Base Awards 2020 is: Skandersvik from Mongoose.

There were lots of fine Traveller Adventures for different settings published. This year, Skandersvik was the most interesting one.

Next category is “Best Ship or Deckplan“. The nominees are:

The winner of the “Best Ship or Deckplan” category of the Zhodani Base Awards 2020 is: Colonial Freighter from Zozer Games.

There were lots of fine ships for Traveller published this year. Colonial Freighter was the coolest and most inspiring design.

Next category is “Best ATU Product“. The nominees are:

The winner of the “Best ATU Product” category of the Zhodani Base Awards 2020 is: The Sword of Cepheus from Stellagama Publishing.

This category always make me happy since you can always find so many cool ideas and useful books.

Next category is “Best OTU Product“. The nominees are:

The winner of the “Best OTU Product” category of the Zhodani Base Awards 2020 is: Aliens of Charted Space Vol. 2 from Mongoose.

Mongoose continues to churn out good quality products for the OTU.

A final bonus category this year is “Best Free or Pay What You Want Traveller Product“. The nominees are:

The winner of the “Best Free or Pay What You Want Traveller Product” category of the Zhodani Base Awards 2020 is: The Zero Gravity Olympics from Old School Role Playing.

There were a lot of great free products this year. In 2020, I have seen lots of questions about futuristic sports. This years winner may answer some of these questions.

Now, go and download all of the free Traveller Products. Why? They are free!

Laws and Order

Traveller’s Law Level only shows one aspect of the law to  player characters. It only answers the question, “Can I take my assault rifle off the starport?”

Law level has a very American feel to it, in that it says what weapons you are allowed to carry. In Europe you’d hardly ever see a person with a firearm in the street, unless they were members of the  police or the military. Recent news video  showed protesters in the USA with rifles in front of a government building, yet the USA has well developed laws, so how would you resolve this?

If the US was a Traveller nation,  population is 328 million (2019), so that would be 8. The government type is 3 or 4, the law is … a problem. Lots of lawyers, a very well-developed legal system, but you can carry a rifle in the street? Law level 4 (no light assault weapons or sub-machine guns) seems right, but that makes the general law too low.

In the UK we have about 68 million people, (7),  The government type is again probably 3 or 4, the law is 8 or 9. This seems to fit better, but it’s still not accurate. The UK has different laws to the USA, but not different enough to have one as Law Level 4 and the other as 8.

Let’s imagine a TL 5 world. It’s actually the same level as the USA in the 1930’s, in that it has fairly well developed laws and culture. It has accepted a D Class starport not too far from the centre of government. The first traders start arriving and a group of adventurers wanders down the street with weapons and armour much better than the local police department (who only have Thompson SMGs and shotguns available).

The first law they write is “you can’t import higher tech weapons than we have ourselves”. There’s an element of protectionism in this too. If the Thompson SMG costs $225 (in 1930), you don’t want the same or better weapons imported at lower prices. If they are going to import better weapons, your government wants exclusive rights.

Inspection
Inspection – Copyright Neil Lucock

Continue reading Laws and Order

Expedition to QV Telescopii

HR 6819 (a.k.a.  QV Telescopii) has been in the news recently. There you can find the closest known black hole.

QV Telescopii System
HR 6819 system – Image from Wikimedia – CC-BY-4.0 license

It is located about 8.5 Sectors away in the coreward direction. Maybe in the Veg Fergakh Sector, Dfotseth, Irugangog, Finggvakhou or the Zortakh Sector. (that you can find at the Traveller Map).

But when I turn on the experiments at Traveller Map and looks at the stars, I cannot see any blue stars in these sectors. So, in order not to mess with the data at Traveller Map, I suggest that QV Telescopii is placed just coreward of these sectors.

A scientific expedition to QV Telescopii could be an epic adventure. Start in Antares Sector. Go through the Julian Protectorate and then Third Empire of Gashikan to avoid most of the Vargr Extents. Then go through a sector that is mostly unpopulated until the goal is reached.

What will happen at QV Telescopii. Maybe there is already a Gashikan (or Vargr) mining station there that is collecting the valuable remains (diamonds, precious metals and superheavy elements) of the blown-up star (that is now the black hole) that has been trapped by the gravitation of the two blue giants. Maybe they don’t want an Imperial exploration vessel here.

So, after the space combat with the Gashikans, the exploration ship is chased out of the system, and back to the Imperium. Better not take the easy route through the Third Empire of Gashikan on the way home.

Subsector Generator Update

I have updated my Random Subsector Generator with a new “race“.

If you select Zork, you will get a subsector with planet names that are inspired by an intrepid space explorer in a very small ship (that usually crashes.)

I have used 1:st order Markov Chains to create the new names. (Higher order create too few names since we start with so few planets.)

Glortero Subsector

From the comic, I also guess that the planets should be quite small and that the tech level is high. So without creating illegal values, I have added a small bias for this.