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Author Topic: The Universe of Hollen's Prize  (Read 10382 times)

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Offline MysticMoon

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The Universe of Hollen's Prize
« on: July 13, 2011, 10:04:35 PM »
The cosmos is vast, the number and type of species inhabiting it even moreso. Clumped together are the central worlds of the Core. Heavily populated, centers of industry, these Core worlds are home to the most advanced technology. They are also the most civilized, with peace kept through patrolling warships. There is no single government ruling the Core worlds and politics play an important role between the various species and governments.

Beyond the Core are the worlds of the Outer Rim. The Outer Rim has a well-deserved reputation for lawlessness. The population is thinly stretched and less protected. Technology tends to be behind the times compared with the more affluent Core worlds. Pirates are a common threat. A few aggressive species have made their homes here, the most notable being the emaciated, yellow-skinned Klandatha and their insectoid footsoldiers.
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Offline MysticMoon

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Re: The Universe of Hollen's Prize
« Reply #1 on: July 13, 2011, 10:05:48 PM »
Technology tends toward hard science, with a few exceptions. Jump drives are able to send ships lightyears in a blink, but will only work at a distance from any large gravity well. Ships tend to spend a few days to a few weeks accelerating out to jump distance before leaping to the edge of another gravity well (plotted out by skilled astronavs) and then decelerating toward their destination.

Long range communication is via tachyon radio. The Core worlds possess the technology and repeater infrastructure for near realtime communication, creating the opportunity for an interstellar level internetwork. For the Outer Rim, communication is far slower and can take anywhere from hours to days to relay a message.
« Last Edit: July 14, 2011, 09:34:51 AM by MysticMoon »
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The old man, grey-haired, braid hanging down.
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His craggy face is turned up, bathed in moonlight;
He looks for his goddess to smile upon him.

Offline EchoMirage

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Re: The Universe of Hollen's Prize
« Reply #2 on: July 14, 2011, 02:05:56 AM »
Wow, this role-play's player slots sure got filled fast.
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Offline MysticMoon

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Re: The Universe of Hollen's Prize
« Reply #3 on: July 14, 2011, 10:17:32 AM »
Artificial gravity has not been developed, despite extensive research into the technology. Rotating space stations and thrust from reaction engines (ships are designed with decks perpendicular to the drives) provide reasonable fascimiles. Spacers become adept at handling themselves in anything from zero to a couple of gees for extended lengths of time.
Chosen of Aktagarti – Divine Synod Guild – Level 1
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The old man, grey-haired, braid hanging down.
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His craggy face is turned up, bathed in moonlight;
He looks for his goddess to smile upon him.

Offline MysticMoon

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Re: The Universe of Hollen's Prize
« Reply #4 on: July 14, 2011, 03:28:45 PM »
Shipboard systems: Most ships are powered by nuclear reactors (the majority being fusion.) Thrusters range from the slow and ponderous pulse-ion drive, to the moderately paced fusion drive, on up to the speedy yet expensive matter-antimatter drive. A good mechanic will be knowledgeable about such systems and will also be comfortable with maintaining other systems, such as the physical structure (hull, conduit, etc) and life support. Larger, well-crewed ships tend to have a number of specialized engineers in this role.

Electronics and computers are an integral part of the function of any starship. Components exist throughout the structure of the ship; any good technician will spend as much time in crawlspaces as sitting at a terminal.
Chosen of Aktagarti – Divine Synod Guild – Level 1
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The old man, grey-haired, braid hanging down.
He is clothed in faded brown robes.
His craggy face is turned up, bathed in moonlight;
He looks for his goddess to smile upon him.

Offline MysticMoon

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Re: The Universe of Hollen's Prize
« Reply #5 on: July 14, 2011, 06:43:01 PM »
Medical Technology is highly advanced. Genetic manipulation is well-developed. Body sculpting is common among the affluent and as a part of some cultures (while reviled in others.) This includes extreme changes in appearance, from multi-hued skin to additional limbs. Genetic modifications are also used by some in order to adapt to alien environments. For instance, adding gills to live underwater or strengthening muscle and bone to handle high-grav worlds. New limbs or organs are easily regrown and a majority of genetic maladaptations have been cured. For those so inclined, and able to pay a hefty price, cybernetic enhancements are also available.

This applies mostly to the Core worlds. In the Outer Rim, skilled med-techs are rare and the facilities to perform most of these procedures are lacking. Some even choose to avoid gen-mod technology altogether, as a matter of cultural pride or religious beliefs.

A shipboard medic is expected to have a passing familiarity with the physiologies of the various crew members. Some are little more than glorified paramedics while others run the equivalent of small-scale hospitals.
Chosen of Aktagarti – Divine Synod Guild – Level 1
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The old man, grey-haired, braid hanging down.
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His craggy face is turned up, bathed in moonlight;
He looks for his goddess to smile upon him.

Offline MysticMoon

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Re: The Universe of Hollen's Prize
« Reply #6 on: July 14, 2011, 07:06:43 PM »
Pilots tend to be the rock stars among ship crews. The rest of the crew keeps the ship together, but the pilot gets the ship where it's going. The pilot is the most visible of all the crew, and among other pilots reputation is everything.

Astronavigation requires an understanding of mathematics and the operation of the jump drive. Calculations for a jump can take hours or days, depending on the length of the jump (intrastellar vs interstellar) and on the quality of the processing power available. There are two paths to such a career: expensive schools or a grueling apprenticeship. Apprenticeships are generally run by guilds and rely on a formalized process of progression. More informal apprenticeships exist, but it is nearly impossible to achieve the proper credentials through such avenues, making jobs among the Core worlds nearly impossible to acquire.
« Last Edit: July 14, 2011, 07:18:03 PM by MysticMoon »
Chosen of Aktagarti – Divine Synod Guild – Level 1
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The old man, grey-haired, braid hanging down.
He is clothed in faded brown robes.
His craggy face is turned up, bathed in moonlight;
He looks for his goddess to smile upon him.

Offline MysticMoon

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Re: The Universe of Hollen's Prize
« Reply #7 on: July 14, 2011, 07:15:36 PM »
Cargo handler has two connotations, depending on the context. Among the larger freighters of the Core, dedicated crew are required to load and unload cargo, as well as monitor and protect it during transit. Many are also put to work in a janitorial capacity. Among the smaller and shadier freighters, cargo handler tends to be a euphemism for hired gun. Many have gunnery skills and a strong military background and are expected to help repel pirates and keep the captain safe in sketchier ports.
Chosen of Aktagarti – Divine Synod Guild – Level 1
Might: 2 | Agility: 3 | Wits: 4 | Charm: 3 | Spirit: 4 | Power: 2

The old man, grey-haired, braid hanging down.
He is clothed in faded brown robes.
His craggy face is turned up, bathed in moonlight;
He looks for his goddess to smile upon him.

Offline MysticMoon

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Re: The Universe of Hollen's Prize
« Reply #8 on: July 15, 2011, 10:44:32 PM »
There is no single overarching government. Some planets have multiple governments while some governments span star clusters. Earth is still a smattering of different governments, although many of those have far reaching colonies. There are empires, republics, oligarchies, tyrannies, anarchies, communes, and many other forms of governance across the various inhabited worlds. Each alien species is also separated into different subcultures and governments.

The galaxy is a crowded, messy place.
Chosen of Aktagarti – Divine Synod Guild – Level 1
Might: 2 | Agility: 3 | Wits: 4 | Charm: 3 | Spirit: 4 | Power: 2

The old man, grey-haired, braid hanging down.
He is clothed in faded brown robes.
His craggy face is turned up, bathed in moonlight;
He looks for his goddess to smile upon him.

Offline MysticMoon

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Re: The Universe of Hollen's Prize
« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2011, 10:45:43 PM »
The closest thing to universal currency is the credit. The value of the credit is agreed upon and recognized by most governments, although this is a loaded topic and full of political wrangling and intergovernmental disagreements. The credit is generally dismissed by the Outer Rim, especially with the lag in interstellar communications and the difficulty of tracking the exchange between worlds. Barter and the use of precious elements is more common there.

To further confuse matters, some governments issue their own forms of currency, to be used within their own borders.
Chosen of Aktagarti – Divine Synod Guild – Level 1
Might: 2 | Agility: 3 | Wits: 4 | Charm: 3 | Spirit: 4 | Power: 2

The old man, grey-haired, braid hanging down.
He is clothed in faded brown robes.
His craggy face is turned up, bathed in moonlight;
He looks for his goddess to smile upon him.

Offline MysticMoon

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Re: The Universe of Hollen's Prize
« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2011, 06:51:53 PM »
The planet Ghestree, not to be confused with the orbiting station Starport Ghestree, lies in that nebulous region between the civilized Core and the wild Outer Rim. It is a favored spot of free traders, being the last stop of the corporate freight lines. Hardy souls willing to face the dangers of the Rim do a brisk trade bridging the gap between the heavily industrialized Core and those willing to pay a high premium for manufactured goods.

There is also a fair amount of passenger traffic. Ghestree acts as a way station for those seeking a more anonymous life away from civilization and a point of ingress for those seeking a safer life in the Core.

Ghestree orbits around an orange-yellow main sequence G7 star. The land is divided up between tropical swamps and frozen tundra. The lizardlike Hessta have a colony in the swamps, bordering a Terran colony on slightly firmer land. The short, thick, and furry Glesta (who named the planet) live in the frozen north and are more than happy to leave the rest of the planet to the other two races.
Chosen of Aktagarti – Divine Synod Guild – Level 1
Might: 2 | Agility: 3 | Wits: 4 | Charm: 3 | Spirit: 4 | Power: 2

The old man, grey-haired, braid hanging down.
He is clothed in faded brown robes.
His craggy face is turned up, bathed in moonlight;
He looks for his goddess to smile upon him.

Offline MysticMoon

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Re: The Universe of Hollen's Prize
« Reply #11 on: July 16, 2011, 10:04:20 PM »
There is no true AI, although the most advanced computers and robots can fake it to a degree. Most robots are little more than intelligent appliances. They can be very adept at a particular task but do not have the ability to reason, understand humor, or think creatively.
Chosen of Aktagarti – Divine Synod Guild – Level 1
Might: 2 | Agility: 3 | Wits: 4 | Charm: 3 | Spirit: 4 | Power: 2

The old man, grey-haired, braid hanging down.
He is clothed in faded brown robes.
His craggy face is turned up, bathed in moonlight;
He looks for his goddess to smile upon him.

Offline MysticMoon

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Re: The Universe of Hollen's Prize
« Reply #12 on: July 19, 2011, 11:42:02 AM »
Powers of the mind, psionics, psychic ability; whatever the name, the source of such abilities is beyond known science. It is extremely rare. Despite massive funding by the militaries of several states, no known way to quantify or reproduce such powers has surfaced.

It is also a mercurial power to have. Some call it a double-edged sword. Others refer to it as being cursed. Even the most skilled of psionicists seem to have little control over their powers and it is not uncommon for the effects to misfire wildly.

There have been no recorded examples of flashy or magical effects, such as pyrokinesis or telekinesis. Most fall into the realm of empathy, telelpathy, remote viewing, and the occasional episode of psychometry (the ability to read an inanimate object's history by touching it.)
Chosen of Aktagarti – Divine Synod Guild – Level 1
Might: 2 | Agility: 3 | Wits: 4 | Charm: 3 | Spirit: 4 | Power: 2

The old man, grey-haired, braid hanging down.
He is clothed in faded brown robes.
His craggy face is turned up, bathed in moonlight;
He looks for his goddess to smile upon him.

Offline EchoMirage

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Re: The Universe of Hollen's Prize
« Reply #13 on: May 06, 2014, 03:29:19 PM »
Spacefaring in Hollen's Prize

The beginning of the First Human Diaspora saw colony ships the size of cities, either sleeper or generation ships, hurtling into the depths of space on one-way voyages, taking years upon years to reach their intended targets. The colonists were forced to survive on their own, without aid from Earth.
Only decades after their arrival, signals streaked towards Sol, telling of success or failure.

The Warszawska-Thuringer drive saw a revolution in space flight, finally allowing vessels to travel faster than light without exceeding its speed.
How is that possible?
The Warszawska drive erects sizeable gravitic sails - a space-time distortion - in front and behind the ship, fanning out for kilometers. These sails allow the ship to capture gravity waves, and ascend into hyperspace, which has the handy attribute that a mile there equals many in the real world.
The higher the level of hyperspace, the closer everything is together; the upper levels have two disadvantages - they require wider and more efficient sails to reach, and they are more turbulent by far.

So far, ships are able to ascend up to epsilon layer - but scientists are sure there are layers beyond.
Alpha coils are required to travel hyperspace. They are huge, and impose a hard limit on the minimum size of a starfaring vessel.

In system, the Thuringer drive utilizes the smaller Beta coils to wrap the ship into a sheath of gravity, letting it to slide down a gravity well forever.
They allow the ship to reach several hundred g in acceleration - which of course is lethal to humans. This necessitated the development of inertia compensators, which provide artificial gravity, and negate the impact of acceleration on the ship's contents.
Both compensator and drive impose a limit on the ship's maximum acceleration; of those two, the compensator is most limiting. You can push your luck and step on the gas more, but the moment the compensator fails, it fails hard - exposing the crew to several hundred g of force, and turning them into a thin film of goo.

Heavy freighters can pull around 100g of acceleration; commercial ships usually make 250g, but can be much faster. Practicality imposes a limit of about 400g on the acceleration of dreadnoughts, but frigates peak at 900g.

The gravitic sheath has also massively influenced military doctrine, as it erects a gravitic anomaly above and below the ship.
*This anomaly is fairly conspicuous, thus active ships are far easier to detect than those moving by their inertia alone.
*The sheath field is practically impenetrable. Thus, ships are vulnerable from the front, the sides and especially the rear, where the sheath is wide open. But every vessel with an active gravitic drive is shielded from top and bottom. This is useful against direct-fire weapons, but missiles can navigate around the sheath halves.

Preparation for a hyperspace jump requires the ship to disengage its sheath and reconfigure the gravity field into the sail conformation.
The quality of the ship's crew, alpha coils and computer determines how long this takes.

Each star has a hyperspace limit in its gravity well, where ships can't travel to hyperspace. The heavier the star, the wider the limit.

Navigation
Hyperspace is treacherous, with gravity currents, waves and storms akin to Earth's sea. Commercial shipping relies on charted safe routes, but even those do have an occasional nasty surprise.
Adventurous vessels, and most in the Fringe, rely on skilled astronavs to analyze the hyperspace ad hoc, and to guide the ship along safely. Well-crewed ships making long trips usually have a few astronavs onboard, so they can work in shifts - hyperspace piloting is a task AIs are notoriously bad at.

Speed
Ships travel at different speeds along the layers of hyperspace. Speeds are given for ships of 400g acceleration.
*Alpha layer: a light year takes a month.
*Beta layer: a light year takes ten days.
*Gamma layer: a light year takes three days.
*Delta layer: a light year takes a day.
*Epsilon layer: a light year takes 8 hours.
Not every route can be equally safely traversed at the same speed. Few ships can ever go to epsilon layer; most civilian traffic stays at gamma and below.
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