A lot of information here. I agree with Valad, you are wasting the internet and the massive amount of material you have written by not providing links through out this. I like the single voice perspective. If you ever want to edit (for content) or expand on this I have some ideas and we could talk.
There are, it is sort of a look into fundamentalism in a part of the world that has created zealots and violent organisations for centuries. Take away the oil and money and you have the conditions to start terrorism and that's what's happened today, but the Cosmic Era is post Islam so instead of the prophet we have tech worshipping zealots who are swayed by charismatic imams to wage holy war against those who defile the sacred tech. Go to Comment
Scrasamax' whole Cosmic Age setting is simply delightful, with all the goodies from cyberpunk and urban fantasy mixed with recognizable but still slightly different items from old saturday morning shows and pc-games.
It is hellishly difficult to rate one of the "Cosmic Age" items over the others, they are all good. Go to Comment
I was kind of expecting just a Cosmic Era take on C&C, but I really like the direction this one headed. It makes sense for a religious-to-zealous region like the Arabian Peninsula venerate super tech like arcanotechnology.
Interesting that you make it a secret society rather than a militant empire. Are there analogues to al-Qaida and the like, or am I reading too much into it? Go to Comment
I am pleased with it, I am generally pleased with the Cosmic Era setting, I do however have a semi-serious concern about how much I am drinking in the process of creating it. At times I am a machine that turns madness (insanity, not anger) and bourbon into 4000+ word submissions on mecha. I enjoyed writing this sub, and there are several others in work that I have done the same on. Go to Comment
1) Is it fun?
It is fun to disrespect authority and the mecha has carried lot of authority and momentum in the popular sci-fi of the last 40 years. By taking some air out the mech in your game you can appear thoughtful because you are not kowtowing to the conventions of mech supremacy. Also if you are getting tired of fiction and/or games that try to refresh themselves and keep their fans interested by tossing out more powerful or rule bending mechs a list of rules that undercut this by adding problems to mechs may look like your definition of fun.
2) Is it another stick (the opposite of fun)?
Can a gamemaster have enough ways to hamstring their players? Of course not? Well there is nothing that tangles up your players more than stopping their actions at the gate with hyperdrive misfires, counter spells or weapon jamming (#1 on this list). This will teach your gamers to read their handouts and could stop them from winning a battle they were supposed to loose.
3) It is kind of like solving a puzzle?
In the 1980s, when the cosmic era was born, there was a video game called Mike Tyson’s Punch Out. In MTPO you played a skinny white kid who trained under the statue of liberty and you systemically beat up a chorus line of ethnically varied boxers that were five times your size. The key to beating these guys was not learning the controls or even really reaction time. Each boxer had a tell (the jewel in their turban would sparkel, they would wink at you or something). When you saw the tell you knew to throw a punch or go on the defensive. Mike Tyson’s punchout was about learning the ‘flaws’ in the opponent’s technique. I suppose you could use this list like this, and every time your players come up against a mech they could check their hand outs and decide how to min-max their tactics.
4) Conceptual Possession or Verisimilitude?
Battlemechs are fictional technology (as of this writing) and in that way nobody really knows anything about them cause there is nothing to know. Except what the author of the game or our arrogant fanboy intuition about physics and technology tells us. Thus by learning the esoteric points of mech design we may find a deeper intellectual possession of the fiction and our roll in it.
5) It doesn’t need a specific game reason, a well written, creative and amusing post is worthy in its own right?