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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Traveller Tuesday: Staterooms

a.k.a. "Just where do those murderhobos sleep, anyway?"

Looking at the map of the Pride of Walston (amazingly, the PCs managed not to wreck it  last game session), you can see that the quarters look rather cozy.

And by cozy I mean cramped. I eliminated the grid in order to make this design prettier (because girl), but those staterooms are roughly 3.5 meter by 2.5 meters (or 11.5 x 8 feet), not counting the bathroom. My rudimentary math tells me this is 92 square feet or 8.75 square meters, which means these staterooms -- which, I admit, are on the small side even for Traveller (because scout ship) -- are smaller than your average dorm room, which I'm told is 12 x 19 feet.

What's interesting about this whole dreary exercise in geometry is this:  Cabins like this exist in real life.

There is an entire selection of images like this to be found at Freighter Voyages. Apparently it's now possible to book passage aboard a cargo ship as if it were a cruise line. I find this endlessly fascinating. Yes, you can rent a suite smaller than a motel bedroom and be stuck in it for days as you cross the ocean between cargo ports!

I tease, but this is exactly how most player characters make a living in Traveller: hauling people and cargo between worlds. It's actually quite cool that something like that exists in the here and now (not counting the Navy, of course. I believe this would rate as officer quarters on most ships, and submarine staterooms are little more than walk-in closets).

Those rooms, though. I'm not claustrophobic, but I'd go mental in one of those. And now you know why, in Traveller, half of the displacement of a stateroom is not taken up by the room itself, but by communal areas such as lounges and galleys.


  1. Hey, now, just because I managed to pull a Jump 6 out of a crippled Jump 2 ship, you don't have to rub it in. ;-) I mean, how many parties manage to dodge spectacular TPK twice in one game session?

  2. You young whipper-snappers and your NEW Traveller. Back in _MY_ day a stateroom was 3m x 4.5m; and we liked it!

    You could by an ice cream for just one credit...

    We had to launch to orbit in the snow.... It got so cold we did re-entry just to warm up...

  3. Not to wreck it? Sure we avoided a TPK, but "technically" we no longer have a starship.

  4. As I said, these are smaller staterooms, because scout. They share freshers for the same reason.

    I'm just amused yet horrified at how small they are. Although they ARE larger than jail cells...

  5. Actually a Type S had that 3x4.5 stateroom. All of the official GDW deckplans had it. Luxury beyond imagining compared to how the Navy berths crew. Stacks of coffins comes to mind...

  6. I haven't played Traveller in decades. Still have my ship designs around somewhere. I designed a salvage fleet that would clean up space-battle debris fields and re-sell the scrap and munitions. It made for a few "interesting" campaigns. Coming up with a method of populating a debris field was fun, in a nerdy way (tech levels, size of vessels, length of engagement, age of ships, etc.)

  7. You can book passage on a cargo ship? Well, maybe I'll be able to go to Europe without having to wait for the rest of the country to recover from the TSA insanity.

    Anyway, 8.75 square meters. Very small, indeed. Sometimes, I think about what life would be like for Traveller characters. It would be a mix of uncomfortable accommodations, punctuated by periods of terror. What such people must be like.

  8. I would be very interested in seeing this method of yours!

  9. Multiplying 3.5 by 2.5.

  10. Ah. I found the math error I had made. Thank you, carry on.

  11. *shrugs* Doesn't look that bad to me.

  12. If stateroom just means bedroom, i have lived in much smaller and thats almost exactly the size of the one i grew up in at home


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