1d12 Pocket Dimensions.

A demiplane filled with gravitational anomalies and (sometimes) floating rocks. The flora is globs of unintelligent algae or lichens floating about or stuck to things. The fauna are confusing amorphous blobs of semi-intelligent life. The place is as dangerous as it is confusing.

Maybe your Transwarp Drive malfunctioned, or a Portal spell went awry.

Roll 1d12 to see where you end up:

  1. Minor Hell. Lots of little demons. (They hate short jokes, btw.) Red skies and dark clouds. Fear is amplified.
  2. Red Desert. The sky is red, the sand is orange and it goes on in barren, windy desert for miles in every direction. Could there be something under the sand?
  3. Junk Rift: There are random heaps of trash everywhere from multiple different societies and tech levels. Everything from soup cans to wingnuts strewn about everywhere. Where did it come from?
  4. Paraelemental Pocket of Lightning: Dimly lit, very cloudy smells of ozone, the surface is like glass. At any given moment electrical bolts could strike. The creatures here must be very tough if there are any.
  5. Fey Forest: Everything here is vibrant and alive! There are birds and blooming flowers. Faeries and fuzzy animals abound. Forests and grasslands stretch endlessly. The sky is always sunny. Everyone seems very happy here.
  6. Upside Down World: A demiplane filled with gravitational anomalies and (sometimes) floating rocks. The flora is globs of unintelligent algae or lichens floating about or stuck to things. The fauna are confusing amorphous blobs of semi-intelligent life. The place is as dangerous as it is confusing.
  7. Psych-a-la-del-ica-la: A colorful place where things are very surreal, almost nonsensical. Has been known to cause mental and emotional instability in those who stay too long. Some never want to leave.
  8. Ethereal Cloud Layer: Upon entering, the traveller immediately begins falling. There are clouds, but nothing solid to grab onto. Luckily, an effect of this pocket dimension is the fall is slowed after a few minutes and does not increase beyond 30’/round.
  9. Brutal Barbaria: This place is full of carnivorous apex predators 10x larger and more powerful than regular lions, tigers, bears, velociraptors, etc. It is only slightly safer to travel on land during the day. Nights are far scarier and last about 16 out of 30 hour cycles. Most of the plants are poisonous or covered in thick spines. There are no signs of civilizations or intelligent life.
  10. Hexagon Lands: The sky is perpetually cloudy and there is no night time cycle. The “land” consists of gray, clear, yellow, green and blue plasticine hexes of the same size. some are linked in a straight line or formed into islands. All of the land masses are floating randomly at varying heights and seem to go on in every direction forever. There is no sign of naturally occurring flora. What could the fauna be?
  11. Greco-Romania: This plane is a giant cloud city that goes for miles in every direction. The goblins that rule this dimension seem to form a pantheon similar to those of Greece and Rome on Earth. Other goblins have wings similar to doves or eagles. It is very peaceful as long as the rules are followed.
  12. Iowa: Vast fields of grass, corn, or beans stretch in every direction as far as the eye can see. The only things sticking up in the distance are a few trees situated around a creek or pond. With a little luck, adventurers might find a small town. The most exciting feature is when UFOs come down at night to abduct the local livestock which are always returned the next morning. This pocket dimension is also a time loop wherein nothing ever really changes from one day to the next.

You discover an abandoned ship floating in space.

Roll 1d12 to see which version you’ve discovered.

  1. U.S.S. Cloudbreaker. The crew abandoned ship following an encounter with a time/space/dimensional anomaly. The engineers were forced to eject the warp core after the anomaly caused a matter/antimatter instability.
  2. Smurf Cloudbreaker: The crew are all 2 apples high and eager to explore space. The ship itself is made out of wood, mushrooms, cloth, and held together with magic. Captain and Papa Smurf ordered an abandon ship when Gargamel and Azreal cornered it in a pitched space battle.
  3. I.K.C Cloudbreaker: A fight broke out amongst the crew. The captain was honorably killed by one of the engineers and things devolved from there. It turns out a sentient ball of energy projected its emotions onto the crew, causing them to seek honor or death. It might be long gone.
  4. Space Hulk Cloudbreaker: A Tyranid outbreak on board forced the crew to defend themselves. Unfortunately, an accident with a Shokk Attack Gun projected Snotlings into the life support system. The end result was pretty messy.
  5. I.S.S. Cloudbreaker: This Imperial Star Destroyer was taking a group of Neimoidian prisoners and several experimental battle droids to a black site on a remote world when the prisoners broke free and activated the droids. The droids were the only survivors.
  6. The Correlon Cloudbreaker: Survived the initial Cylon assault on the colonies long enough to make the first jump with the fleet. Unfortunately, human-appearing Cylons vented the atmosphere, killing most of the occupants in the outer compartments. Fierce onboard fighting ensued until the last remaining cylons boarded the escape pods and ejected.
  7. Mining Colony Ship Cloud Breaker: Was doing okay until they found a strange egg while mining in an asteroid field. The captain was attacked by a creature that attached itself to his face. Later, the creature fell off on its own. At dinner, the captain had some sort of xenomorph burst from his chest. The beast then killed the rest of the crew and is still on board, along with a lot of eggs.
  8. TFTC Cloudbreaker: The unfortunate victim of an experimental Arachnid space mine. Infested with Arachnids. The bug presence will be pretty obvious upon scanning the ship.
  9. Bioship Cloudbreaker: This very strange craft is actually a living being. Currently no crew aboard save one being permanently fused with engineering. The engineer will be able to explain that the crew went down to the planet to observe a religious ritual and came back with a virus that killed all of them.
  10. Union Ship Cloudbreaker: This vessel is reminiscent of Earth vessels seen in the movie 2001 A Space Odyssey. Internal surveillance systems indicate the crew was grabbed by a freaky wormlike race for use in nefarious experiments.
  11. Spelljamming Ship Cloudbreaker: An astrogation error led to the crew running out of air and supplies. It’s messy and smells terrible on board. Otherwise salvageable. It’s got a very strange power source and jump drive compared to those used by technological societies.
  12. Space Freighter One! He’s not abandoned. He’s not even adrift. He was just observing one of his maintenance cycles when you bumbled into him. He’s a loveable intelligent starship and will gladly stay and chat about humon culture and society.

Enjoy. I hope you found these tables useful or even slightly amusing. Thank you for stopping by. I appreciate you all so much.

Thoughts On a New Space Campaign.

‘ve been inspired by “The Orville” as it is somewhat as I imagine someone’s starship RPG campaign to look like. Unlike other TV series that take themselves too seriously at times, I think many RPG groups do pretty much insist on dropping some witty side banter and the occasional humorous situation.

Picture, if you will, “The Orville” using Star Frontiers Rules.

The sheer awesomeness of Space Freighter One.
Art by @tinyworld96

Gonna try to make my friend on Twitter, @FreighterOne proud with this one. I’m contemplating writing a short series of adventures or at least an outline for 9-12 episodes. It’s going to be centered on a smaller starship crew (the PCs and a few select NPCs) traveling through space and their wacky adventures every week.

I’ve been inspired by “The Orville” as it is somewhat as I imagine someone’s starship RPG campaign to look like. Unlike other TV series that take themselves too seriously at times, I think many RPG groups do pretty much insist on dropping some witty side banter and the occasional humorous situation. I think gamers tend to take things less seriously than Hollywood most of the time, anyway.

The only question I’m having currently is which system to use?

Nothing new, right? I’m always sort of hemming and hawing about which system I want to use for any given game. This is a campaign calling for something easy to learn, easy to play, fast and fun. This campaign will be designed around getting a group together for about a dozen sessions, so nothing too complicated.
My short list of contenders for this game:

  • ICRPG by Runehammer. Warp Shell gives us some sci-fi/space context. It’s a very easy system to work with. I could almost create a generic series of adventures and fill in the details later.
  • FATE by Evil Hat. This game company has been on a roll as of late. I like FATE for its simplicity, ease of adaptation and spiffy dice.
  • FrontierSpace by DwD. I mentioned Star Frontiers earlier. This is sort of the next generation of SF. It’s a bit crunchier than the previous two games. I like it a lot because of its harder sci-fi edge.
  • D6 System by West End Games (Nocturnal Media.) I mean, it worked for Star Wars, right? Plus I can design ships and characters in my head in less time than it takes me to write them down. I can still run this game blindfolded.
  • Shatterzone by West End Games (Precis Intermedia.) If you follow my blog, you probably know I have lots of love for old WEG products and Precis Intermedia for keeping some of them going. Shatterzone has awesome backstory and a deep world design, but it is a bit crunchier than everything else on the list.

Other thoughts included Starfinder, Cortex, SWADE, EGS, MCC, and even D&D 5E. I’m trying to minimize the crunch and find a base set of core rules that most players will have good access to. At the same time, I want a product that is more easily licensed in the event I decide to publish the campaign on DriveThruRPG.

I think with Spelljammer coming out soon, it might be fun to run a space game for a few weeks. You can only do so much fantasy, right? I think a space game set in Earth’s future might be a fun change of pace.

The next part of the series will be the first two episodes.

I like to link the first two episodes of any campaign together and usually the last two or three episodes. What can I say? I take a lot of RPG inspiration from TV and movies. My more structured campaign style functions very well with that format.

I want to do all of this without railroading the players, but unfortunately most published RPG campaigns and many adventures tend to be somewhat railroady in their presentation. I have learned a lot from Monster of the Week in terms of presentation, though. I might create episodes as missions this time.

Thanks again for stopping by. Space Freighter One isn’t helping me with any game development and probably has no idea I mentioned it. I just really wanted to give a friend a shout-out. Please go visit their site if you get a chance. I can’t think of humor and starship without thinking of SFO.

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