Thursday, June 6, 2013

WORLDGATE COMMAND CAMPAIGN ASSUMPTIONS: For comment



"The first step, then, is to decide on the rules, or at least some guidelines, for your campaign. In freewheeling genres like time travel, or even (slight-ly) more constrained settings like the Infinite Worlds, it's important to get your players to buy into these guide-lines, too, before the first die gets thrown. Otherwise, you're setting yourself up for a game full of picky exceptions, intentional near-paradox, and generally avoidable irritation."



GURPS Infinite Worlds is the bible for multi-world play. In it is a section advising a GM how to set the parameters for that game. I have used that format to try and frame the expectations of game play in the WGC campaign.

PARAMETERS

Scale
{WHY}

Just like the base IW campaign, mine will be somewhere between prosaic scale and epic scale, with a leaning toward epic. Players will build 300/150/5 PCs.  My thinking is; In Infinite Worlds, a Special Forces team member runs about 200 points. I'm adding the 100 points for extraordinary ability if desired. There is an over all goal of preventing a devastating paradox caused quantum instability.  

In the physics of this game a time paradox manifests itself as large scale environmental damage that grows and ebbs as it radiates up the time line. Historic earthquakes, legendary hurricanes, even the Black Death can be traced back to a paradox action. Time heals itself by creating a new timeline where the paradox causing event happened, keeping the original timeline intact. The damage done in the original time line is due to the energy/matter/life force/antimatter/dark-matter/magic/all knowing twinkie...... being riped from one timeline to make a new one.    

Much of WGC's time and energy go into protecting allied worlds timelines and helping them protect our timeline. On any mission to an allied world, past or present, it is required by the cooperation agreement, to have at least one team member from that world on the mission.

As we begin the campaign, WGC is aware that some agent or agency, is actively attacking the timelines of allied worlds, but no one, or no organization, has been identified yet.

Scope
{WHO}

Pick one of the 4 Allied words as a place to come from and use that to shape your PC.

WorldGate Command: Prime
TL8(9)

Pure Military, Military trained Psi users, Science fixers/ Gadgeteers. Combat Mages, Medics/Clerics. WGC has the highest TL of the allied worlds, with some access to TL9 tech. WGC prime Psi users all have Holly as a patron (9 or better), free. All prime world PCs get WGC as a patron for free, all other worlds have to buy it.

Leauge of Danger
TL7(8 )super power)

Think 1920-1950 style costumed super heroes. Some are of the extraordinary person variety (Batman, Doc Savage, The Shadow, Kung Fu master ). Some will have super powers, but at 300 points I don't think any battleships will be tossed around. I can see an android AI or maybe some other mad scientist type life form. Gadgeteers would enjoy the access to improved tech and power sources.

One thing this world has that others don't is an ability to open diode world gates by using super powers. Most diode worlds require 10-100x the power for a trip in one direction then in the other. If a super from the Leauge world adds their energy powers to any gate opening, the power to reach diode worlds returns to normal levels. Without this help we can not open any outbound gate on the Leauge world.

All things fantasy. Elven bowmen, Half giant monks, Young dragon disciple. The Map makers guild is all about exploring and adventure. It is also our best source for all things magic. Fireball tossing trolls, Pixi stealth and black operations specialist. Need a magic sword to kill the evil Dr. Unhero? Got that covered. Build clerics like super powers, but add divine origin and limits and modifiers in line with your chosen religion. Devine origin powers will work on any world and can only be blocked by a religions own beliefs. I.E. You may lose your powers if your hair is cut.

The Conquistador Empire of North America.
TL5(7)

 This wealthy and powerful empire has a monopoly on access to Wraith Stone. It only provides empire approved agents to WGC (Duty (Empire)). They are Gadgeteers, marksmen with powerful magic firearms and other weapons. Daemon binders, earth callers, and air benders. Tribal shamans in service to the empire. Trackers and bounty hunters with wartime experience and mystic powers. Magic learned in this world needs a focus that uses Wraith Stone and a spirit origin. Calling, binding and forcing otherworldly energy is this worlds magic. Powers/Margery should be bought with Focus: (Wraith Stone Item), Fickle, Nuisance effect, and some level of accessibility.

Gadgeteers, artificers, weapon smiths, and artisans of all types can use Wrath Stone to enhance creations. Any powered item that uses Wraith Stone gains the Cosmic source for power and never needs re-charged, re-loaded, re-fueled or to be repaired. They can be broken, even destroyed, but if an item has even  1HP left it will repair itself at a rate of 1HP a day. This does not come cheep. Wraith Stone items add 1000X to the item price on the world (Empire cost), 10,000 x item price, off world (WGC and other worlds).

The empire provides some of the best spies and has a history of intrigue. Sadly it also has a history of zombie invasions. At any given place and time, a zombie outbreak may manifest as a result of even minor paradox impact. Other, much more powerful, supernatural entities can spawn in response to more extreme paradox.

The empire is also dealing with a rebellion in parts of North America. Slaves have rebelled and enlisted the help of many local armies and a powerful overseas ally who has cracked the code of life itself,attacking with engineered lifeforms.


{WHAT}
Players will be part of WorldGate Command and will need the duty disadvantage to WGC. Any off prime travel will be to a place chosen by WGC and will have a mission objective, you are in the control of the military, that is the way it is done. Expect to be involved in the following types of missions:


  • Training
  • Scout and Explore.
  • Observation and Intelligence.
  • Science Primary.
  • Diplomatic and First Contact Support.
  • Allied Support.
  • Humanitarian.
  • Quantum Stability Defense 
  • Rescue and Extraction.
  • Classified Operations.  


{HOW}
The WorldGate is a movable object that is opened for one direction of travel by applying enormous amounts of energy to it. Some worlds require Psi or magic to be added the energy for access. In order for a team to return without a special power source, return times are set in advance. For some unknown reason gates are only open for 12 seconds, and require 12 min, 12 seconds before they will open again. WGC limits items to 10' x 10' x 10' in size unless special approval is given.

WGC has access to 13, 1000MW, naval class Wraith Stone enhanced reactors. At any given time 10 are on line, and 3 are down for maintenance. With 24 hours notice all 13 can be safely brought on line. In 4 hours the 3 down system can be forced into service at a risk of failure.

On every "first dial" WGC starts by sending through BUGS (Bio-mechanical Universal Gathering System), a swarm of insect sized micro robots, who record information for 12 min and return when the gate reopens.

Information skills for WorldGate tech:
  • Knowledge (WorldGate) Int/H and Engineering (WorldGate) Int/H
  • Gate operation: Int/A
  • Physics (Quantum Worlds) Int/VH


Boundaries 
{WHERE}

Game play will be heavily weighted in favor of play on one of the 4 allied world, with side trips elsewhere. Timeline defence will put players in the different timelines of all the allied worlds. Expect indoor and outdoor play, but most missions will have something inside that needs done.

Travel to the future just does not work with gate tech. There are timelines where tech is more advanced, so you may think you have gone forward, but it is an independent time line.

Players will spend down time in WGC or on their home prime if they wish. Highly trusted and vetted off prime personal are cleared for off base travel, but require a security escort from prime.