“Episodic Space Adventure”

Some time back I began writing notes for an ‘episodic space adventure’ game. I’m not sure at this point whether I’m likely to do anything with them, and have received commentary from people interested in using some of its concepts. That said, I also want to protect any IP I might have (that which isn’t clearly based off of someone else’s universe; for instance, you’ll notice a few references to characters from a certain sci-fi franchise in the ‘inspiration’ category). 😉 So, I thought I’d post it up here to fulfill all of these requirements. This is (except for formatting) exactly as my notes are, with little organization.

Some member species of the Amalgamation

Humans – While physically weak and frail, humans possess above-average intelligence and unmatched creativity. These traits served their galactic ambitions well, and have led to their being among the most prominent explorers and spacefarers.
Human-type names.

Cats – In one of the greatest cons of all time, so-called “Felis domesticus” spent millennia thoroughly tricking humans into believing them to be nonsentient, and exploiting that relationship for all that it was worth. This finally came to an end when a certain orange tabby was caught operating a human-built computer around the turn of the last century, but cats have remained masters at playing off of other races’ misconceptions. They have since infiltrated every level of Amalgamation society, and have proven to be frighteningly adept spies, diplomats and warriors.
Normal cat-ish names.

Kekoris – Massive coldblooded lizards from the ravaged world of Ton, so-called Kekorises are notorious for their size, strength, long life spans, regeneration of lost body parts, and near indestructability, making them infamous groundpounders and intimidating police.

Names are typically monosyllabic series of “grunts” or “growls”, denoting the given name and familial origins.
Wizguiz – Squid-like aliens who communicate via colors and sign language. Elaborate scientists and researchers, with a flair for the dramatic.

Meshers – Carnivorous short-lived spider-creatures who directly interface with one another’s minds, transmitting memories or knowledge. Meticulous builders and bureaucrats, they engineer much of the Amalgamation’s underpinnings. Names are serial numbers, but individuals in prominent positions often receive ‘nicknames’ from other species.

Hreahah – Equines with the natural ability to bend light around their bodies, becoming somewhat invisible. Tend to work in jobs that involve moving goods from one place to another, or directly in skilled labor and production jobs. Made first contact with the Chrawkee, founding the Amalgamation.

Chrawki – Dodoesque scavengers with a natural knack for languages. Canny negotiators and skilled scouts. Founded the Amalgamation with the Hreahah.

The Amalgamated Starfleet
Alliance of multiple sentient races, with member planet/systems

The Central Domain
Hostile galactic empire with ruling “main” species
Gnew: Long-lived industrious space beavers!!!

Intergalactic Empire
Race far more powerful than anyone the Amalgamation deals with. “Spaceward Ho” inspiration. Vulnerable to their own Armageddon Device.

Design of Amalgamation starships
Starship parts are manufactured independently and required to only meet certain standards, allowing for different interchangeable parts and systems. Ships are designed in a modular fashion, with the size of the ship depending primarily on the reactor. Reactor sizes are listed in the metric system. A planetary power system would use a megareactor. A large station or massive starship might have a kiloreactor. Large cruisers carry hectoreactors. A personal shuttle might use a standard-sized reactor.

Design of Central Domain starships
All ships of a certain class are exactly alike, down to the wall pictures. The Domain operates several classes of fighting ships:
The Battleship, which is the largest and most powerful. There are very few of these. Large; triangular pyramids.
The Frigate, the most common large fighting vessel; square pyramids.
The Corvette, a moderate-sized escort and patrol ship. Pizza slice shaped.
And the Gunship, which serves a fighter-like role. Cone-shaped.

FTL travel:
Amalgamated ships are most commonly equipped with standard warp drives. However, Individual Amalgamation races may manufacture their own systems for FTL travel as well. Some alternative FTL methods include:

Teleporters/Jumpgates: Create artificial one-way wormholes going to a certain place, with energy requirements that expand depending on the exit point’s distance from the gate.
Hyperdrives: Takes advantage of natural distortions in the fabric of space-time to form ‘hypertunnels’, rapidly transporting the ship to anywhere along certain ‘lines’. Allows for much faster travel than a warp drive, but depends on pre-existing space conditions. All Domain ships rely on this form of technology.
Transposer: Alters the fundamental code of the universe to instantly transpose the code of ships to other locations. Theoretically allows for travel to anywhere in the universe. However, takes some time to write from one place to another, and it’s only possible to discern where a certain area is in code by actually being there. Thus, only places with transponders can be reliably transposed to (otherwise, you’re moving across the universe at random).

Domain ships rely exclusively on hyperdrives.

Ten chapters:

Chapter 1
Shakedown: Get used to the ship, and participate in a training exercise.

Map out a dangerous nebula.
Hunt down and defeat a rogue starship.
Protect refugees seeking asylum.
Resolve a diplomatic dispute.
Transport important cargo as quickly as possible.
Make first contact with an alien race.
Evacuate a series of outposts.
Repel a Domain invasion.

Chapter 10
The Raiders: Investigate the disappearance of several ships on the edge of the border.

 

Officer ranks

Admiral
Commander
Lieutenant

Cadets – trainees

Major –
Junior –
Brevet –

Unused names:

Cadet Tea – something cat?
Ans-o-Eck-a-Urd – Kekoris

Roles on the starship

Analysis – science officer who operates and interprets both external and internal sensors
Operations – controls ship movement and equipment like shields and weapons
Engineering – fixes things, installs equipment, makes things run good
Medical
Security

Analysis:

Technician Amara Kanu – female human
Having watched the stars since she was a girl, Kanu was a quick study in advanced academic astronomy. She possesses an encyclopediac knowledge of stellar phenomanae, and over the course of years of study, has picked up a sizable knowledge in how they interact with Amalgamation space equipment.
Inspiration: Uhura
+ Knows everything about natural space conditions
– Weak understanding of alien technology

Lt. “Speedy” – female Mesher
After winning some acclaim serving in a system defense force, ‘Speedy’ has been cycled into the pool of promising young officers for a new space tour. She is expecting a sizable new brood, who she plans to station all over her next assignment to help her keep an eye on things.
+ Complete knowledge of insides of ships, and nearby space
– Poor long-range scanning

Jr. Cmdr. Kay R – male Chrawki
Kay has served for several years aboard a Amalgamation scoutship, but is seeking a transfer for a chance to advance in rank. An experienced First Contact specialist, he is an expert at finding aliens and interpreting their behavior. His superior was pleased with his body of work, but suggests in his letter of recommendation that he could be more mindful of his immediate surroundings.
+ Good at picking out anything technological, from even a great distance
– Limited skill with natural space conditions

Mjr. Lt. Nyahsah – female Hreahah
Raised on a dangerous jungle colony world, and naturally nervous to begin with, Nyahsah has spent her entire life looking out for trouble. Her temperament made her a natural for the freighters delivering supplies to the outposts on the Domain border. Nyasah makes it her duty to be aware of anything that could go wrong, at any time.
+ Constantly aware of anything that might be dangerous
– Doesn’t keep great track of much else

Operations:

Bvt. Cdt. Bryan Marshallson – male human
A child prodigy, Bryan was born and raised onboard a scoutship and grew up being given a complete education in star travel. After being orphaned under mysterious circumstances, he was adopted by Admiral Hudson, a bigwig in the fleet, and was given free rein at the starfleet academy. After Bryan completed his courses early, the Admiral exploited a loophole in the age restrictions to get him into service as soon as possible. He’s eager and ready to begin his first space tour.
+ Incredibly fast at everything
– Lack of experience; tends to misjudge and underestimate others

Mjr. Lt. “Spooky” B. – female cat
Given traditional training by her mother from the very beginning in the best ways to kill things, Spooky has perfected the art of hunting and brings time-proven cat tactical and strategic thinking to the stars. She has a knack for finding any enemy ship’s weakest points and striking at them with overwhelming force. A prima donna, she prefers to have her own way in doing things, and disdains others’ suggestions.
+ High chance for critical strikes against enemy ships
– Orients all strategies around the element of surprise; not so strong without it

Adm. Felix – male cat
An older cat who’s done it all, and is seeking one last bit of adventure, in a diminished, advisory role, before retirement. His seemingly laidback appearance belies the most cunning mind in the fleet. A master of deception and surprise, he always seems to have another ruse to pull from his bag of tricks.
+ Vastly experienced; the best available at giving you good options
– Loves his naps, and is a hard sleeper. Age has resulted in some issues that need to be cared for and taken into account.

Jr. Cmdr. Manawah – male Hreahah
An expert navigator and pilot who knows how to get the best performance out of any ship’s engines, and the best direction for those engines to go. Somewhat cocky, he tends to favor flashy, high-yield high-risk maneuvers over the ‘safe’ way of doing things.
+ Makes your ship faster, and can exploit that speed for all it is worth
– More prone to accidents and danger

Engineering:
Jr. Cmdr. Nyehoh – female Hreahah
Workmanlike engineering officer, with a reputation for efficient work and minimum waste. Rated in the top-#5 fleet-wide in overall speed. Stickler for regulations and specifications.
+ Fastest engineer available
– Uncreative

Mjr. Lt. Asett n Hord – female Wizguiz
High-minded dreamer, with two additional degrees in theoretical science and art. Favors advanced technology and experimental designs, and likes to try out new ideas, whether in simulations or field conditions. Prefers to work in spastic bursts of intense activity, when “inspired”.
+ Radical equipment innovations
– Somewhat luck-dependent, unpredictable results

Technician Cyrus Spencer – male human
Cynical engineer with an appreciation for antique technology. Good understanding of the fundamentals of Amalgamation technologies, and masterful ability to jury-rig, improvise and design with limited material.
+ Works quickly with all Amalgamation-like technology
– Works more slowly with anything radically different or new

Technician Luc J – male Chrawki
Adept ‘tinkerer’ with an intuitive understanding of different kinds of equipment and an ability to adapt spare parts to new purposes. Worked at a repair shop and on a merchant ship for a while; most recently assigned to an ongoing program to reverse-engineer Domain technology.
+ Good at obtaining or installing new equipment
– Slowest engineer

Medical staff head choices:
Dr. Dora Blue – female human
A sweet, mousy nurse-turned-PA-turned general physician. Strongly empathic, compassionate and motivated by the ideal of “do no harm”. A talented practitioner, but lacking in confidence and prefers to avoid high-pressure situations.
Inspiration: Skyblade
+ Good at every field
– Weaker performance in any life-threatening situation

Dr. ‘Tapper’ – female Mesher
An older, experienced surgeon with a dry sense of humor. Kept from advancement due to a lack of tact and political allies. Thinking about retiring from the fleet in the next couple of years. Likes to involve her numerous children in her work.
Inspiration: McCoy
+ Amazing at physically patching things up
– Below-average research ability

Jr. Lt. Ada K – female Chrawki
The daughter of a distinguished diplomat, Ada grew up with a great understanding of all types of diverse species, and has spent the last several years on call at the Union’s capitals as a xenomedical doctor. She now wants to expands her horizons by facing the challenges of a space tour.
+ Can take care of any species
– Poor surgical skills

Lt. Ceefax r Tep – male Wizguiz
An up-and-coming medical prodigy, with a natural affinity for science. While an ingenious analyst and researcher, some are concerned about his excessively formal bedside manner and seeming inability to relate to patients.
+ Brilliant medical research
– Poor at preventative care

Security choices:
Master Sergeant Ont-a-Ont-o-Ont – male Kekoris
A Kekoris enforcer from the war-torn world of Asher. A formidable, resilient fighter who leads by example. Tends to prefer ‘decisive’ solutions, and is perhaps not the best choice for missions involving any degree of restraint.
Inspiration: Bowser
+ Super-strong and practically invulnerable
– Somewhat thoughtless; leaves potential collateral damage

Lt. Adam Kaufmovan – male human
Cross-trained in navigation and serving several years as a tactical officer, Harrion transferred into security fairly recently. A well-balanced officer with a good understanding of ship procedures and more than his fair share of ‘luck’.
Inspiration: Chekov
+ Can offer alternative options for cross-trained fields
– Somewhat impulsive and susceptible to injury

Cmdr. Oscar Gordon – male cat
Served in marine and army operations, and took the initiative to win the day in one extensive ground campaign. A shrewd mind who plans for every possible contingency in battle. Believes that no man should be left behind, and insists on having extensive influence over ship operations to make sure the best use is made of his personnel. Disciplined, authoritarian command style.
+ No negative surprises or random chance in marine decision-making; everything you see is how it is
– You have next to no control over marine ops; he also likes to argue with you over your other decisions

Bvt. Lt. Cono “the Barbarian” – Gnew male
A rebel agent and space pirate formerly operating in the totalitarian Domain’s space. Given asylum and a commission in the Union navy “in return for services rendered”. Considered a loose cannon for his unorthodox approach to regulations and the chain of command, but is very experienced in every aspect of boarding or securing a starship.
+ Chance of success under any circumstances
– Quality of work is dependent on morale

Author: James Gryphon

My passion is and has always been for doing things that interest me that nobody expects me to do. Without any expectations in the mix to sully my affairs, I have a particular interest in writing, computing (vintage Macintoshes in particular), and in all types of play, whether video gaming, tabletop board or card gaming, or sports. I hope to be able to use these interests as the foundation of a lucrative and beneficial career.

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