This was the first time in this game that I had attempted to use both the starship encounter table and the reaction tables from the Classic Traveller rules.
The starship encounter table from the Classic Traveller Starter Edition pdf essentially reprints the encounter table from The Traveller Book. This expands upon the Book 2 encounter table with the result spread now running from 2 – 15, and with each Starport type having its own column and selection of results. The presence of a Naval or Scout base grants positive dice modifiers and the ship encounters can also generate small craft encounters as well. All ship and small craft encounter types are now detailed and include all the standard ship and craft types that appear as “off the peg” designs in the rules. While still a “small ship” universe, this encounter table has both more detail and less freedom for the Games Master in that the ships are defined by class rather than primary function.
|Standard 2d6 Bell curve|
|+2 modifier on 2d6 Bell curve moves the range to 4 - 14|
And on the third hand, I could just stick with the basic table, assume that any encounter rolled was significant to the characters, and play Interrogation to discover the What and the Why of it. Interrogation is a little thinking-assist brain-storming game I used to play where I would use a series of dice rolls to map out a story idea or plot.
In the situation where the Iridium Queen encounters the Guard Amethyst in the Miazan system, I rolled a Free Trader encounter type on the Book 2 encounter table. On the Reaction Table, I rolled “Hostile. May Attack.” Very interesting – who was this Free Trader and why was it hostile? I then posed a series of Yes/No questions and rolled 2d6 – 7+ for “yes”, 6- for “no”. Were they rivals? Yes. Trade rivals? No. Family rivals? Yes. From the same homeworld? Yes.
These answers told me that the Guard Amethyst was also from Celephais, and that the bad blood between the two ships was more of the nature of a feud between two families. This, in turn, gave me some insights into the nature of Celephaizon society (clannish). And also, by implication, it would appear that Captain Lukk, rather than owning the Iridium Queen herself, may actually be acting as agent for, and on behalf of, her family as Captain. With this revised ownership scheme, I was able to worry less about whether Lukk was meeting the mortgage payments on her ship and more about her meeting her running costs.
The naming of the rival ship, the Guard Amethyst, and her captain, Captain Venhrait, gave me two more plot hooks to begin hanging more story bits on, and an archenemy for the crew of the Iridium Queen to focus upon.