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Old 10-31-2010, 05:26 AM   #31
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Default Re: [Space] GURPS Handbook of the Planets

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Thank you for sharing this. I truly appreciate your effort, and you making the result available.
Seconded. The HotP is fantastic; the fact that Brett is distributing it freely, even more so. I only wish I had more free time to test it exhaustively.

Good to see you back, Brett.

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Old 10-31-2010, 05:38 AM   #32
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Default Re: [Space] GURPS Handbook of the Planets

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I tend to use "plot-generated" systems, i.e. whatever the plot demands, but mostly due to a lack of time to generate large numbers of systems, investigate them for story-friendly features, then build a story around them.
Whereas this is precisely what works best for me. I've found I'm quite good at looking at a large sample of random data and building settings and stories by free association of suitable samples (the massive UPP lists in the several Traveller incarnations, which in the beginning I considered a waste of space, turned out to be one of the most useful parts of the books for me). The HotP is perfect for that.

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Old 10-31-2010, 07:49 AM   #33
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Default Re: [Space] GURPS Handbook of the Planets

I will second Mercator's post. I have a set of campaigns that I want to use the Orion Spur as the setting for. The astrography is going to matter to me since that is what will determine the spread of colonisation efforts, resource allocation, invasion routes, etc. Working with Astrosynthesis I can get the positions of stars down to current precision (yeah I know that isn't saying much for ones outside a certian radius). Add in a GURPS specific planet generator and I can work out likely boundaries for polities and species with different requirements and tweak the results along the way. Space Empire "A" been around half a million years? Enough time to reform marginal worlds so bump some of those up to "garden". I need to play with this. Thanks again Brett.
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Old 10-31-2010, 10:30 AM   #34
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Default Re: [Space] GURPS Handbook of the Planets

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Working with Astrosynthesis I can get the positions of stars down to current precision (yeah I know that isn't saying much for ones outside a certian radius).
Do you have a good set of data for the nearby stars in a convenient form? Common names, Bayer/Flamsteed designation, position, spectral class, luminosity, mass, and age where known? I'd find that very handy. Especially if it came with the semi-major axes and eccentricities of orbits in multiple systems.
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Old 02-02-2011, 01:06 AM   #35
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Default Re: [Space] GURPS Handbook of the Planets

Good Lord! Has it really been three months since I put this up? Why have I accomplished nothing in that time?

Has anyone been making use of it? War stories?

Do you think that planetological detail such as star system generators produce actually makes a difference to the course or outcome of SF RPG adventures? I had a conversation yesterday with a chap who suggested that they don't, and therefore are a waste of time. I answered I value what they contribute to the background, the verisimilitude it provides to have background detail settled, and the sense of otherworldliness that an alien setting can give even it it doesn't have any tactical effects. But I would like to know that he is wrong, that adventures being set on an un-Earthly world can turn out differently because of that.
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Old 02-02-2011, 06:20 AM   #36
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I have played around with it, much like I did with VE2 and will do once we get VDS and as I did with G:Space 4e and pen and paper and a pocket calculator. Not so much preparing for games, but more like solitaire or one player Civilization. My group is playing fantasy and an end of the present campaign is not in sight, so it may be quite some time before we start a SF campaign.

I personally absolutely want planetological details. If I wanted just some rough ideas I could have stayed with Classical Traveller or GURPS Space 2e. Whether they will have practical effects once I get to use some of those planets I donīt know. But I want them. Besides, itīs a lot easier not to use something thatīs there, than to create something thatīs not there.
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Old 02-02-2011, 08:06 AM   #37
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Default Re: [Space] GURPS Handbook of the Planets

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Do you have a good set of data for the nearby stars in a convenient form?
The best bet is probably the Hipparcos-Yale-Gliese catalogue: http://www.astronexus.com/node/34

This will get you spectral class and abs magnitude, from which you should be able to derive luminosity (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luminos..._and_magnitude). Not age, though.
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Old 02-02-2011, 08:09 AM   #38
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Default Re: [Space] GURPS Handbook of the Planets

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Do you think that planetological detail such as star system generators produce actually makes a difference to the course or outcome of SF RPG adventures?
They certainly do to me - even without immediate game-mechanical effects, it helps me as GM to know that there's a proper basis for this particular world being cold and that one being hot, that this one has high density (aha, so there are probably minerals there worth having) and that one has an exotic atmosphere. In my newest campaign I've been getting adventure ideas inspired directly by details of stellar system and spaceship design.
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:35 AM   #39
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Default Re: [Space] GURPS Handbook of the Planets

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Has anyone been making use of it? War stories?
I'm using it my fantasy game! Of course it's definitely a fantasy game with some SF sensibilities. I'm finding it very useful to differentiate the 13 planets on which the game takes place. I don't think I would have been willing to use the rules in Space for this without your spreadsheet.

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Do you think that planetological detail such as star system generators produce actually makes a difference to the course or outcome of SF RPG adventures?
Absolutely. Firstly there are game mechanical effects of Gravity, air pressure, and so on. Without planetological detail, I'd likely just forget about them, making every place to be exactly like Earth. Secondly there are the atmospheric details. When I describe the place, how many moons are there? How many suns?
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Old 02-04-2011, 08:35 PM   #40
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Default Re: [Space] GURPS Handbook of the Planets

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The best bet is probably the Hipparcos-Yale-Gliese catalogue: http://www.astronexus.com/node/34

This will get you spectral class and abs magnitude, from which you should be able to derive luminosity (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luminos..._and_magnitude). Not age, though.
My best at present is the ISBD database. (With permission from the author) I downloaded the database files, which has a lot of the required data (except that continual discovery of extrasolar planets keeps putting that data out of date), but the formats are a bit inconvenient.

ISDB does have mass and age and metallicity where these have been determined.
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