Random persons , Traveller, 1981 in Gamemasters Corner, Adventures & Plots
uncle_jimbo Feb 22 2019, 01:18 Group: Grid Cop, 5éme Corbin Quote Post
Traveller Book 3: Worlds and Adventures includes random encounter tables, besides the slightly better-known Patrons and Animals sub-systems, that do some of the same work as the D&D 1e DMG Urban Encounters.

Along the lines of other recent notes, I might want to rejig these for Alternity to work partly by a check against character attributes. As written, the different kinds of random persons have the same physical ability scores, weapon skills and behaviour, differing in their weapons and armour. Book 3 considers that Intelligence and Social Standing probably won't come up immediately. An Alternity GM might choose to use the Supporting Cast Templates in the 1998 GMG or some subtables (I have some ideas for Tourists, along the lines of Convention-Goers).

Each scene that the GM feels might benefit from an extra encounter, for the hero directing the party or subgroup (ignoring the usual advice not to split the party):

Make a Personality feat check, applying the hero's Fame modifier:
  • Good to Amazing: encounter occurs
  • Ordinary or Failure: no encounter
  • Critical Failure: encounter occurs, using the WIL feat result for failure.
If an encounter occurs and wasn't a CF, make a Willpower feat check, applying the hero's Authority modifier (roll the second d6 for Book 3, if desired - this directed random detail fits various other work of mine):
  • Amazing: Adventurers, Noble, Hunters, Tourists, Researchers or Police, or the GM may present a local encounter including some interest or opportunity
  • Good: Soldiers, Police, Marines, Naval Security, or a local event such as some kind of involvement in a current celebration or political disturbance
  • Ordinary: Merchant, Traders, Religious, Beggars, Pilgrims, Guards
  • Failure: Peasants, Workers, Rowdies, Thugs, Mob
  • Critical Failure: Fugitives, Vigilantes, Bandits, Brigands, or a local threat.
Book 3 advises to adjust for law level, tech level and balance. These adjustments might include:
  • Law level: Reduce guns and large blades for a high law level, though not for soldiers and reversed for police. At low law levels, those persons not listed with weapons might carry them for self-defence and general convenience.
  • Tech level (Progress Level, Tech Era): Substitute for various results, such as broadswords, halberds and perhaps revolvers. Space Cantons already does something similar. For Traveller, blades (what I've called a large dagger), cutlasses and foils (edit: I think they mean rapiers or small-swords) remain relevant. Star*Drive, Protostar, Star Wars, Warhammer 40K or what have you each have their own assumptions.
  • Encounters might vary in numbers, armament, SCM grade and so on by what I've called a Cultural Threat Level.

This post has been edited by uncle_jimbo on Feb 23 2019, 01:11
uncle_jimbo Feb 22 2019, 23:36 Group: Grid Cop, 5éme Corbin Quote Post
Author (uncle_jimbo @ Feb 22 2019, 12:18)
Tech level (Progress Level, Tech Era): Substitute for various results, such as broadswords, halberds and perhaps revolvers.

The Starter Edition specifies a shift in tech level from the local baseline, which is probably more sensible, with a little more work for the GM.

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