log in or register to remove this ad

 

"Players wanted for a Space Adventure Campaign!" What are you hoping to see?

Yora

Legend
I am tinkering with setting up and running a new campaign in a space setting that doesn't concern itself too much with science and is more about swashbuckling and gunslinging adventures. But one thing I noticed very quickly is that there is very little existing material for GMs, most likely because every such campaign or game system has very different settings that make adventures be based on widely different or even unique premises that don't really translate between each other.

So knowing that a campaign is going to be set in space and about adventures tells you really quite little about what you can actually expect. I could of course just make a setting that I find fun, and promoting it as "a Stars Without Number campaign" should get some players, as that system has a relatively well known name that comes with a great reputation. But I think it should be quite useful to do some looking around for what players are looking for in a Space Adventure campaign. In the end, it will still be up to me to make decisions what kind of elements I want to use and which I won't. But the better the impression that I can give players who might be interested in playing such a campaign, the less likely it should be that players find out after an hour that this isn't at all what they were hoping for and not come back.

As such, this is a really broad and open ended question, with completely subjective answers. To anyone who thinks "exciting adventures in a space setting" are a game you want to play, what are the things you'd be hoping to see in such a campaign? Or hope to not see again for the fiftieth time?
The goal behind me question is to get some picture what aspects people care about and what makes them exited to play such a campaign. Not to set up a game by committee, but to gain pointers which topics to think about. So feel free to share whatever things come to your mind.
 

log in or register to remove this ad

payn

Hero
We are a year into Pirates of Drinax sandbox campaign for the Mongoose Traveller 2E system. The game is set in a backwater section of space sitting between two giant empires. Frontier feeling with piracy as a large element make it ideal for swashbuckling in space. Most of the adventure material could easily be ported into other systems if folks are interested.

List of elements of the game;
  • Empire building
  • Political intrigue
  • Exploration
  • Hard Sci-Fi
  • Piracy
 

dragoner

Dying in Chargen
My advice is to make it to your own interests, because without keeping your interest, it will die. I released a science fiction setting on dtrpg Solis People of the Sun which is the culmination of 10+ years of design and playing. It's for Cepheus Engine (Traveller), except I have played it with M-Space, and have been slowly working on a more 5e adjacent version of the game. Usually one has to find a certain adventuring group focus, "Space Pirates" is hugely popular, though I find myself sort of being more interested in intrigue vs combat as much.
 

aco175

Legend
A good and bad problem is that anything is in space. You can have worlds of deserts and other swamps, some ice, and others made from diamonds even. You can run into any type of monster or PC race. Anything may start to become overwhelming.

I may be easier to model it after an existing troupe. Do you want a Star Wars feel, or maybe Star Trek. I would like a Firefly style over a Dune style. Saying each of these shows/movies gives a feel for type of style.

I would combine visiting worlds with encounters in outer space. Missions where you are hired to gather or escort with missions to develop your PCs. It is like planning a D&D campaign, but you can go crazy with the environments. Like the Mandorlorian where you are on an ice planet with giant ice spiders and then you are breaking into a space jail. There does not need to be reason why you go from a desert to an ice planet, since it is built in.
 

Lord Mhoram

Adventurer
With that descrition I'm immediately thinking pulpy cinematic kind of things (early star wars movies, swing off space chandeliers, lots of quips and interaction), I would expect faster pace and focusing the the "adventure" side of what you can do. I would be expecting no politics, no faction vs faction stuff - basically the opposite of Dune; no space traders trying to find next job, or get enough fuel - that is wand-waved, and the focus is on the characters and the mischief they get into.

That was my immediate emotional expectation when I would see "Space Adventure campaign"
 

Fenris-77

Small God of the Dozens
I want to bust out my What would Han Solo do? bracelet as a roleplaying tool. My touchstones for space adventure are things like Star Wars and Firefly, and not quite so much Star Trek, but that's mostly down to personal taste. To describe it another way, I might be looking for the Three Musketeers with blasters. Someone upstream mentioned pulpy and cinematic, which is very much the way my expectations would be set.
 

Jmarso

Explorer
Back in the late 70's, early 80's, there were the art books like the Terran Trade Authority (TTA) series, Steven Caldwell's books, Space Wars, Worlds and Weapons, etc. The stuff in these books (and stories created around the art) were the inspiration for our earliest attempts at 'Space DnD' . Nowadays there are a lot of TV shows and movies to mine for ideas, milieus, and motifs, but don't forget that other stuff. Plus old animes like Star Blazers, Hurlock, and Venus Wars, etc. Let's not forget the era of supermarionation, either. (Captain Scarlet, Thunderbirds, and so on) Plenty of material out there to choose from, and plenty that could be adapted to the idea of space piracy.
 

pogre

Legend
We are a year into Pirates of Drinax sandbox campaign for the Mongoose Traveller 2E system. The game is set in a backwater section of space sitting between two giant empires. Frontier feeling with piracy as a large element make it ideal for swashbuckling in space. Most of the adventure material could easily be ported into other systems if folks are interested.

List of elements of the game;
  • Empire building
  • Political intrigue
  • Exploration
  • Hard Sci-Fi
  • Piracy
Completely agree. I am running a group playing this as well. It is an amazing sandbox for a campaign and could go a lot of different ways.
 

dragoner

Dying in Chargen
I was a player in Drinax years ago when it was being released as a serial for 1e, Gareth Hanrahan is great writer.
 

payn

Hero
With that description I'm immediately thinking pulpy cinematic kind of things (
That was my immediate emotional expecta
early star wars movies, swing off space chandeliers, lots of quips and interaction), I would expect faster pace and focusing the the "adventure" side of what you can do. I would be expecting no politics, no faction vs faction stuff - basically the opposite of Dune; no space traders trying to find next job, or get enough fuel - that is wand-waved, and the focus is on the characters and the mischief they get into.
I can agree with the "no traders trying to find their next job" bit. I have done some Traveller in the past where the crew is trying to make their ship mortgage payments and its not as fun as it sounds. The players often take the less risky path and often it leaves great opportunities behind.

I am curious about what type of mischief a crew gets into in a no politics and no factions type of game? I mean, in typical Traveller trading jobs usually lead to adventures, and in Pirates of Drinax the politics and factions lead to the adventures. Would this adventure focus game be like Star Trek exploration or like Star Wars where the PCs are white hats against clear black hat NPCs?
 

niklinna

Looking for group
If you are looking for published material, you might want to check out Fading Suns, which has recently been republished in a new edition. I had the original books—the genre style is kind of a blend of Dune, Babylon 5, and Stargate (interstellar travel via ancient jumpgates, political intrigue, and mysteries of all kinds, plus demons and such) with White Wolf-style structure (orthogonal "professions"—noble, priest, technician—and factions crossing those professions with obvious structural parallelism).
 

Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
When I think swashbuckling adventures in space, I think of heroes like Flash Gordon, Commando Cody, Rocket Man, Adam Strange, John Carter, Eric John Stark…

I think of would-be planetary emperors, space pirates, smugglers, lost or decadent civilizations, occasional alien monsters & robots running amok…

I’m expecting some retro-futurism, melee weapons still bring meaningful, jet packs, unusual firearms…
 


Lord Mhoram

Adventurer
I can agree with the "no traders trying to find their next job" bit. I have done some Traveller in the past where the crew is trying to make their ship mortgage payments and its not as fun as it sounds. The players often take the less risky path and often it leaves great opportunities behind.

I am curious about what type of mischief a crew gets into in a no politics and no factions type of game? I mean, in typical Traveller trading jobs usually lead to adventures, and in Pirates of Drinax the politics and factions lead to the adventures. Would this adventure focus game be like Star Trek exploration or like Star Wars where the PCs are white hats against clear black hat NPCs?
That was part of it. And I could see politics that drive stories, but not stuff a character is involved with or that deep political manuevering wasn't something the characters did, or that made them feel ineffective. Star Wars had lots of politics, but it is hugely different than Dune.
 

aco175

Legend
You may start to get less this,

1632142014945.png


But more this instead,

1632142090175.png


Hopefully not this,

1632142163019.png
 



Level Up!

An Advertisement

Advertisement4

Top