Unexpected Treasures

25 Apr

Dartronus Prime, a simple spacescape I created (click for larger view)

I was digging through what few old papers I have and stumbled across a Traveller Starship design I had created. This ship was one that I designed towards the end of a Traveller campaign that started in ’82 and ran for a couple of years.

My Scout character, Karl Volker, made his fortune running whatever goods he could, legal or not, across the Spinward Marches. He is the one that I have mentioned in previous posts. The guy started off as a legit, law-abiding Imperial citizen, but slowly came to dislike the sometimes oppressive policies it had, especially concerning taxation of cargo and credit fees for ports, etc. He disliked how it cut into his profit, when he was taking a lot of risks to deliver goods for the local governments on dangerous and vital missions.

Eventually he became somewhat of a tax-protester/ Anarchist and was one of the leaders in a failed rebellion of several outer worlds against the Imperium. Along the way, he had also made himself an enemy of the Zhodani Consulate, which put a death mark on him and sent infrequent Assassin agents to attempt to take care of Karl once and for all. Because he was a wanted man by far too many powerful enemies, he left Known Space and went deeper into uncharted regions. After several misadventure, one of which resulted in him being imprisoned by an advanced alien race for two years of mind probes and observation, ex-Scout Volker decided he wasn’t safe anywhere. Karl went blindly even deeper into Unknown Space.

The campaign was winding down as it was, so I decided to leave his fate a mystery (but I suspected that if I had played him any longer, he would have met some strange and spectacular death).

Osprey Non-Standard Merchant Vessel (click for larger image)

so… on to the ship design that I found and scanned. It was the first special design ship that Karl Volker commissioned, but it wasn’t the last. It is called the Osprey and I labeled it a “Non-Standard Merchant“, which could just as easily have meant “Potential Pirate vessel”, because it was reasonably armed for its size. The armaments and defenses of the 1000 ton Wedge-shape vessel consist of:

1 – 50 ton Bay Particle weapon (the Big Gun!)
3 – Turret Triple Sand Casters
2- Triple Beam Turret Lasers
1- Single Turret Energy gun (Plasma)
4- Triple Turret Missile Launchers

For a merchant vessel of this size, it was armed well! No way did I want the tables turned on me if things got dicey in space. Karl had already been boarded early in his career when all he had was his junk heap of an old Scout vessel and he didn’t intend for it to happen again.

  • The ship has a Jump Drive factor 4 and high local space maneuverability of 6.
  • The Osprey is capable of a crew compliment of 20 personnel.
  • It is fitted with ram-scoops to skim gas giants or water worlds for fuel and has a cargo capacity of 220 tons.
  • There is zero waste space in this vessel.

At Tech Level C, the bill for this beauty came to a whopping 532.85 MCr (million credits)

Quite the investment, for sure and not a bad design, if I do say so, done according to exacting Traveller construction rules.

here is the Ship Design Worksheet that went with the plans, if you are interested.  I had to adjust the brightness and contrast of the image some to make it more legible, because the original is done in pencil.

(click for full-sized image)



6 Responses to “Unexpected Treasures”

  1. David April 25, 2011 at 4:34 am #

    Nice ship, and the IN Form 10 brings back memories. Not sure if I would have allowed a bay weapon on a private vessel, back in the day, but one of my players did buy a decommissioned Imperial Cruiser. The cavity the spinal weapon once occupied made a huge cargo bay!

    • Retro RPG April 25, 2011 at 8:09 am #

      that would be some cargo ship!
      I guess my let me buy what I could afford and design… the planet was unaligned, so the Imperium wouldn’t stop me. Yet you do bring up a good point. A bay weapon might not be allowed in some campaigns. I would have had to design something else in that case. I do not remember the system too well, but if that amount of hull use (50 tons) could be armor instead, I might do that.

      Thanks for your feedback!

  2. Bard April 25, 2011 at 5:37 am #

    Nice ship. I also like the starscape a lot — how did you do that? Simple freehand drawing/painting or did you work with some kind of program? Either way, it really looks good.

    • Retro RPG April 25, 2011 at 8:04 am #

      Thanks, man!
      I was trying one of several techniques in Photoshop. There are several steps to making it, but there are a lot of tutorials online that show you how to make all sorts of custom planets and such.
      One reason I am doing these is to make the planets in the solar system of my campaign.

  3. Craig A. Glesener April 25, 2011 at 9:45 am #

    Umm. Just one question.

    If the ship is 1000 tons, that gives a total of 10 Hard Points and yet both the deckplan and the IN 10 show it with a 50 ton PA bay, plus 10 Hard Points filled with various Turrets, how is this legal?

    I mean I understand in YTU that the rules might be bent but under the standard rules this ship has too many weapons for its tonnage.

    Also, I seem to recall and here i am a bit in the dark as I only perused HG lightly, but I seem to recall that Bays use up more than one HP. Might be wrong on this one, so call me on it if I am.

    Still it is a cool looking ship.

    • Retro RPG April 25, 2011 at 4:58 pm #

      it has been so long I do not remember the finer points of the rules. I’ll have to crack open my Highguard book and see if I made a mistake. If you find out anything, please let me know.

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