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Old 07-31-2017, 05:31 AM   #21
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Default Re: [Game] Generate a military sci-fi setting

A19

The ark was automated and the central computer systems were mostly destroyed with the rest of the ark. Some computational units were recovered, along with some robots, but the AI in the units seems to be sub-sentient.

The ark was on an apparently endless mission to collect breeding populations of sapient life forms. Most were found by radio transmissions, but some were found by probes sent to solar systems it was passing by.

It is doubtful that the builders of the Ark are going to seek to recover it, given that it had been traveling at 15% the speed of light (apparently its maximum velocity) for a few thousand years. However, most projections of the route indicate it is winding enough for the probable origin to be merely 300 ly away.

Q20
Are there strategic resources that are fought over? If so, what are they? If not, what are wars fought over?
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Old 07-31-2017, 11:04 AM   #22
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Default Re: [Game] Generate a military sci-fi setting

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Meta Q1 Opening up a second stream of questions relating to how the setting might be used.
Can you provide a quick summary for your players about the type of game you want to run in the setting?
With what we've got so far, this is a possible rough sketch. I've made the state of the Earth slightly more pessimistic than what has been given so far, but that could be put down to differing perceptions.

Meta Answer 1- Campaign Sketch
Heritage Guard
"We leave behind our ancestral home, but only for a short time.
One day, when the Earth quietens and the storms subside, we will return.
And when we do, all that we left behind will be here for us."
Madame Jubilee Long, Chief Magistrate of the Anglo-Atlantic Commonwealth Protectorate

Leviathans from Biome Lambda-56 come thrashing across the landscape, nightly catastrophic aurorae scour the countryside with relativistic beta-particle torrents, seismic hiccups triggered by deep mantle magnetic instability regularly rock the land, the coastal walls holding back the rising oceans crumble as they are lashed by super-typhoons... and now the Department of the Protectorate have deemed the British Isles suitable for resettlement? Sure sounds like some political BS. And where's the funding to hold the unit together? The Heritage Guard are little more than a budget afterthought, and are way underfunded for the task they're sworn to.

This is a small unit military campaign for a deployment tasked with protecting abandoned human culture from the ravages of looters, territorial invaders, alien infestation and geomagnetic instability. It could suit various kinds of military unit, depending on the gaming group: infantry, power suit, tank, airborne, mecha, or special ops.

The Guard's remit is wide, so missions may include:

- Cultural Protection: In the Evacuation, priority was given to getting the populace off-world. With highly constrained lift-capacity, let alone time to manage the situation, a great deal of the Earth's cultural relics were left behind. And not just in museums and art galleries- manors, corporate vaults and private collections contained billions of dollars worth of art that was mostly abandoned, while architecture and archaeological ruins cannot be relocated. Two centuries have passed, but it's only been in the last few decades that surface conditions have been survivable enough to manage recovery and collection activities, so there's still a lot of work to be done. Are works to be preserved in situ, centrally relocated, or sent off-world? PCs could either be investigators or military escorting the boffins.

- Infrastructure Protection: Early on, it was thought that the roads, buildings and industrial infrastructure were the most important assets of civilised society that would need to be preserved for our return. Technological advances mean that most infrastructure would be easily replaced upon resettlement, and this priority was eventually dropped. Nonetheless, the character of old streets and towns is deemed to be worth preserving. The Guard are sent to repel scavengers or xeno-infestations, but without wrecking the scenery if at all possible.

- Geo-Reform Engineering Escort: Essentially, the GRE lads are trying to terraform Earth back to a livable state, and are doing so with monstrous atmospheric reifying engines, draft funnels, recti-geomagnets and oceanic filters. Their activities draw attention from many unpleasant customers- tech pirates, sovereignty-claiming homesteaders and the obligatory alien bug-beasts. The HG's job is to let the GREs get on with their jobs.

- Preservation of Sovereignty: The Heritage Guard are the representatives of the various governments of the Anglo-Atlantic Commonwealth and are there to maintain the legal fiction that the lands are under government control until resettlement can be effected. Militias with discrete support from foreign off-planet governments have been known to make moves on pieces of AAC territory, as have the occasional alien nation or gang of buccaneers, and must be repelled.

- Resettler Escort: Well, some Department of the Protectorate doo-doo head sitting comfortably on Luna has decided to start sending resettlement groups. The HG is there to defend the resettlers from aforesaid alien bugs, insurgent militia, illegal squatters and cosmic ray aurorae… if there's a Guard unit near enough.
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Old 08-01-2017, 07:26 AM   #23
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Default Re: [Game] Generate a military sci-fi setting

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Q20
Are there strategic resources that are fought over? If so, what are they? If not, what are wars fought over?
Jupiter and Saturn are largely claimed by the Alien factions, as a result humans have some additional difficulty gaining access to large amounts of water beyond the belt. In fact system wide water is a valuable commodity with many prolonged skirmishes being fought over large ice asteroids.

The heavier elements are too be expected a valuable resource. Various Armour and Gravity drive components are impossible to make without certain materials. Hydrocarbons are becoming increasingly rare with earth being off limits legally speaking.

The Venusian terraforming technology that was offered by the Arc is a holy grail that no one has yet reliably claimed to have found. Supposedly if you got hold of this you could have a habitable planet in as little as 25 years.

The political structure in place around the repopulation of Earth places importance on population when determining the share of the planet going to each faction, as a result several of the biggest stations have changed hands recently.

Q21
How well do independent mercenaries fit in? If they are common do larger mercenary armies exist?
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Old 08-01-2017, 07:45 AM   #24
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Default Re: [Game] Generate a military sci-fi setting

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Q21
How well do independent mercenaries fit in? If they are common do larger mercenary armies exist?
Mercenaries are how war is fought. With so many peoples in the system, paying the full expense for a military can be wasteful: you use someone else. Mercenary armies can be large or small, but most of the time you need more than one to your job done. If only because they tend to specialize.

Q22
What does an elite shock trooper wear: battle suits? mecha? exoskeletons? Flight packs? unpowered armor? Luck and awesomely bared abs? or something else? or are their multiple kinds?
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Old 08-01-2017, 09:38 AM   #25
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Default Re: [Game] Generate a military sci-fi setting

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Q22
What does an elite shock trooper wear: battle suits? mecha? exoskeletons? Flight packs? unpowered armor? Luck and awesomely bared abs? or something else? or are their multiple kinds?
A22: Elite shock troopers vary depending on the expected mission. The most common, however, are "space marines" who deal with boarding other ships. These generally use battlesuits when they can afford them, combat hardsuits and other environment suits when they can't. All the suits have thruster units to enable them to get to the enemy ship. Space marines also tend to have stealthy assault shuttles that are designed to get them close, while a few of the more notorious units use boarding pods that drill into an enemy hull until it comes across an area it can open up and deposit its forces into.

Mecha are used more often by ground-based defensive forces, particularly on Mars and Luna. The mecha are more often closer to BattleTech battlemechs or Macross destroids than they are Gundams or Evas, but a few forces have transforming mecha - ala the Macross Valkyries and Mospaeda Cyclones - for increased mobility.

Some groups are experimenting with robotic boarding operation soldiers of varying styles, with varying degrees of success.


Q23:
With all this going on, are the fighter pilots, mecha pilots, or space marine boarders held in higher regard by the general populace, and why?
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Old 08-01-2017, 06:16 PM   #26
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Default Re: [Game] Generate a military sci-fi setting

Answer 23

Among Humans, mecha pilots have the highest regard with the general populace. This is principally because when mecha were first introduced about 250 years ago, where great pains were made to emphasize the combat effectiveness of mecha (the supposed weakness of the legs was the first to be quashed). Also, most mecha are very photogenic, and thus most combat footage tends to revolve around them.

Some fighter aces receive some recognition for their efforts, but it tends to fall in to the background compared to the fan clubs for mecha aces. Notability for space marines is generally at the company level, but some truly exceptional individuals are recognized on occasion.

Of course, among all this talk the poor bloody infantry are forgotten again...

Question 24
Amateurs study tactics while professionals study logistics. What kind of logistical problems and solutions are involved in interplanetary warfare?
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Old 08-02-2017, 08:47 AM   #27
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Answer 23
Question 24
Amateurs study tactics while professionals study logistics. What kind of logistical problems and solutions are involved in interplanetary warfare?
Even with gravity drives the distances involved in conflict create a headache for those involved with supplying the troops. To alleviate some of the problems it is extremely common for groups to operate micro-factories and military printers in close proximity to the action. While not perfect these systems can steadily produce a basic level of equipment sufficient to keep a force operating. In prolonged engagements without resupply this can lead to the troops being completely reliant on locally printed equipment. Higher tech lasers, gyrocs, vehicles and coil guns generally need more specialized parts than a micro-factory can produce so the older fall backs come into use, caseless RGE series assault carbines, E.T.C. BRPR units and even cased AK series rifles.

Some of the more distant campaigns have seen innovative deployment of micro-factories. On the ice fields of Neptune, mecha/infantry units are often seen with "mama bear" mechs, part APC, part supply depot.

Mercenary contracts usually result in the soldiers getting supplies from both their own organization and their contract holder. Getting the supplies from the later can be problematic in some circumstances, so many units employ specialist facemen (women) and "organizers" to ensure supplies get through.

Meta Answer 1
Ok the game will be Monster Hunters IN SPACE!, aliens, genemods, sentient robots and Psychics are some of the opposition. Your unit has been recruited from the various special forces and elite mercenaries that exist in the system and is supported by a detachment of seasoned Gurkhas.

Question 25, open
Several factions and groups have been around since the twentieth century, how have they adapted to the current environment? Tell us about one.
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Old 08-02-2017, 11:00 AM   #28
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Default Re: [Game] Generate a military sci-fi setting

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Jupiter and Saturn are largely claimed by the Alien factions, as a result humans have some additional difficulty gaining access to large amounts of water beyond the belt.
Again, I hope you don't mind if I logic check something here.

If we had 120 million aliens arrive 200 years ago, and arriving in a very disadvantageous position, being basically zoo animals without their own tech base who were then granted refuge or asylum on their arrival, they would need somewhat substantial advantages to be in a position of significant power now. Population-wise, given a growth rate of 1% per year, comparable to the current human population growth rate, 200 years would only give them 870 million souls. This is less than 0.1% of the one trillion humans we have living here (suggesting the year is around 2500, by the way, using the same growth rate. Handy population calculator here.) And as there are 12 alien races to spread this around, each alien nation is only a fraction of that.

What advantages could they have to allow a disproportionate power base?

- Accelerated reproduction rate?
The 1% growth rate above is an average over various bust and boom periods, whereas for the aliens this could be a 200 year long boom period, as they quickly expand into a new available habitat. They could also biologically be faster reproducers.
At 3% they get a population of 44 billion, 4% gives 306 billion, while 5% yields 2 trillion... For comparison, it seems the human population growth rate peaked at about 2% in the 1960s, but it could drop down to 0.1% in 2100 according to UN projections.

- Advanced tech base?
Perhaps they weren't just living in gilded cages, but were bringing with them their own civilisations' libraries of tech, and then built everything up with cross-pollination between the other races on their millennia-long journey. What they broadcast to humanity before their arrival were but a few tidbits of the tech they have.

- Greater solar energy independence?
Human colonies prefer to be closer to the sun, while the alien colonies can survive more easily at greater distances. They have solar-independent power sources? This isn't convincing for me yet, as humans should have access to at least somewhat advanced nuclear power.

- Those psychic powers?

- Political unity?
All 12 races might see themselves as one nation, particularly after their millennia living together in the same closed box. The human nations are more fractionated than even when they were all on Earth, and getting them to cooperate properly is like herding wet cats up a hill with a pointy stick. Before they knew it, Jupiter and Saturn had been occupied and blockaded by the alien nation.

Question 26
What else could be considerations?
Which one of the above has the most interesting or desirable implications for the setting?

Question 27
I've used a naive average growth rate of 1% for the human population to reach 1 trillion by 2500 AD. This also assumes that the alien population isn't a significantly large proportion of the population. Should we take these numbers as is, or go with a more conservative growth rate- due to the many challenges of building a deep-space civilisation- and thus set the current year at a later point?
And incidentally, what is the alien population?

Sorry for flouting the question-answer rules here. Q25 is an open question though, so we might need some questions to keep the question stream flowing.
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Last edited by Daigoro; 08-02-2017 at 11:15 AM.
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Old 08-02-2017, 12:15 PM   #29
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Default Re: [Game] Generate a military sci-fi setting

One discrepancy I noticed:

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Q5
How well occupied are the other planets and moons in the solar system?
Every solid body that's obtained a hydrostatic equilibrium classified as a terrestrial planet, moon, or dwarf planet in the system has at least one pressure/environmental dome colony, save for Venus. In addition, there are O'Neill cylinder and/or Stanford torus stations in every L4 and L5 position for the major planets, and possibly a few of the minor ones.
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Originally Posted by (E) View Post
Jupiter and Saturn are largely claimed by the Alien factions, as a result humans have some additional difficulty gaining access to large amounts of water beyond the belt. In fact system wide water is a valuable commodity with many prolonged skirmishes being fought over large ice asteroids.

The heavier elements are too be expected a valuable resource. Various Armour and Gravity drive components are impossible to make without certain materials. Hydrocarbons are becoming increasingly rare with earth being off limits legally speaking.
Given that "every solid body that's obtained hydrostatic equilibrium (save Venus, way too hot)" includes four of Jupiter's moons, seven of Saturn's, five of Uranus's, and one or two of Neptune's, plus something like 20 KBOs and sednoids that are either dwarf planets or candidates for dwarf planet status, and that humanity was emigrating well before the Alien Diaspora occurred, would the aliens truly dominate the entirety of Jupiter's and Saturn's orbits, or would there plenty of contact between the two Belts (asteroid and Kuiper) as far as raw materials?
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Old 08-02-2017, 12:28 PM   #30
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plus something like 20 KBOs and sednoids
That we have identified. There're almost certainly thousands of objects in this class.
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