Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Traveller Tuesday: Message for you, sir

This post inspired by the fact that I think it's too easy to generate mail with its rather high profit-to-tonnage ratio.

How to Generate Mail the Erin Palette Way
First, throw out the system in the Core Book. In my experience, it generates too much mail too quickly. If you find this is not the case for your particular band of murderhobos, use the rules as written.

Second, use this flowchart:
  1. Begin with the Population Rating of the planet you are on.  This is your base number. 
    • +2 to base number if this is a High Tech (TL 12+) planet. 
    • -2 to base number if this is a Low Tech (TL 5-) planet. 
    • -4 to base number (cumulative with above) if both worlds are on an Xboat route. 
  2. Consult Passenger Traffic Modifiers between worlds and apply DMs to base number.  
    • If modifier of -10 or more:  -2 DM
    • If modifier of -9 to -5:       -1 DM
    • If modifier of -4 to +4:      +0 DM
    • If modifier of 5 to 9:         +1 DM
    • If modifier of 10 or more:   +2 DM 
  3. This is your Mail Traffic Number. Roll 3d6 and add to Mail Traffic Number. If 18+, mail is available. 
    • Optional rule:  a +2 DM to this roll may be given if at a Starport of C, D, or E quality to represent mail piling up without regular outbound service. 
  4. See if characters are eligible for mail. 
    1. Their ship must be armed. 
    2. They must have a full-time gunner aboard. 
    3. Optional: Roll Rank (Scouts) or Social Status + Admin (8+) to represent bureaucratic approval.
  5. If eligible, see how many tons of mail are available. 
    1. Roll 1d6-1, minimum of one [or 1d10/2 if you're polyhedral]. 
    2. This is how many dtons of mail in Uniform Mail Containers (1 dton each) are available. 
    3. Each dton of mail is worth 5,000 Credits if delivered in a timely manner. 

You've got mail!

1 comment:

  1. Despite the description in MgT, I've always envisioned the "mail" as being more packages (including physical mail) than data. In my view, the Xboats carry data, while contracted carriers - free traders or scheduled ships - deliver physical packages. As a result, you could profitably remove the DM for being on an Xboat route.

    I expect that worlds (with starports of type D or better) off of the Xboat routes have scheduled couriers that go to grab data packets on a regular basis (more frequently the better the starport), making an interstellar data network that resembles, in practice, the old FIDONet more than the modern internet, where local BBSs would dial up once a day or so to grab the day's data packet from a hub BBS, then organize the data according to the network protocols.


The Fine Print

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution- Noncommercial- No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

Creative Commons License

Erin Palette is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.