Burning Traveller?

Could you run a Traveller free merchant type of game (ala Serenity & Firefly) in Burning Empires?

I’m going to quote myself on this one:

Also, our games nearly always occupy the whole system. There are asteroid belts, Oort clouds, satellites, moons, space stations and sister worlds. They all fall into the same numbers for the world burner – en toto they are “the world.”

In our current invasion game, the player’s stated goal is to get their current world set to invade their sister binary world. It’s fantastic long term goal. We talk about it all the time. It’s in all their propaganda: “Save Fomar!” But in order for them to get to that point, they’ve got to clean up their own house first.

At the end of the phase, we get to deal with that other planet’s fate. Do they head out in force as a fleet? Or do they flee there as refugees? Either one will be great.

But, as you’ve rightly noted, BE is not a “explore the galaxy game.” That style of game fiction is rooted (to my eye) in the Aubrey-Martin/Horation Hornblower/Pirates/Privateers romance fiction. Head off in your ship to explore foreign lands! A new adventure in every port! Awesome. But Burning Empires is rooted in fiction like War and Peace or Ursula Le Guin’s Hainish Cycle. The local populace and geography are the stage for this drama. They can be as expansive as any pirate novel – world wide, can’t really get bigger than that! – but they take on a different context. As I said, you’ve got to clean up your own house in BE before you can head off into another.

(Of course, you could just burn your ship as your “world.” The World Burner is designed to handle such situations. You could stop at different ports of call – making Circles tests or regaining Resources – but the problem is on your ship.)

So it depends on what you want from that game.

Hey Mike, I remember you from the PEG forums. Welcome!

IMO, you could probably make most of Serenity’s crew using the BE lifepaths, but the trick is to set up your game, as Luke says, so that there is a gameable problem on your ship that your characters can’t simply space out the airlock or run away from.

Thanks, that must have been some time ago as I haven’t played SW in 2-3 years now. I do recall your name though. Its pretty hard to forget. :slight_smile:

Cool. I know virtually nothing about this game as of yet but it looks pretty interesting. I don’t even have BW yet, but I hope to get it in sometime next week. And just like how I must turn every fantasy game into D&D, I feel the need to turn every sci-fi game into Traveller. :stuck_out_tongue:

The other option is essentially what’s happening in Firefly: Burn up the whole ambit of the vessel’s travels as a world. You can run from Badger or from an Alliance officer, but you can’t escape the Alliance.

Strictly you should do this as one solar system, but if you wanted to make up something silly about a tight star cluster I wouldn’t laugh too hard.