Space Patrol: A Daring Adventures Setting
I often work on multiple projects at the same time, primarily to prevent boredom. So I’ve been working on a fantasy setting, a game which powers that setting which is both tactical, yet uses relative positioning rather than a grid, and of course there is my 9 Worlds Project and the pulp action game I designed to run those games, although I provided statistics in the meantime for game systems which would mimic the tone of each world. Well, I’m back to the 9 Worlds Project with this post.
Space Patrol is honestly the darling of all of the settings I’ve worked on since I started this blog. It was the one which got me thinking in a new direction, and the one which I spent the most development time on. It is also one of the settings which was 100% new at the time of the 9 Worlds Project’s inception. Some of the other worlds fold in information or ideas which I had begun developing years, even a decade, ago. It was just my bad luck that Cosmic Patrol and Rocket Age were announced shortly after I had done the basic layout of this setting. I felt that jumping on a bandwagon was not in my best interests if I intended to publish this work, so I moved Space Patrol to the sidelines.
Thus, you’ve seen posts a year or more ago about Ascension Agenda, These Idyllic States, and Broken Trust. Well, since I’ve started work on Space Patrol again, I’m going to post information about it. I need to finish writing up the Psionics subsystem for Daring Adventures before I can get serious about putting all of this together, but I feel it is finally time.
Overview: Tales of the Space Patrol is set in an alternate future, one where Earth as a whole was shocked by the implications and devastation of the Great War, and through cooperation, and concentrated attempts at converging cultural wisdom and thinking resulted in this future. A mission of tolerance overcame the balkanized state of the planet and the further immediate threat of intraspecies war. This allowed the planet to make a decided push for the stars by the end of the century, having fumbled to moon landings and solar system exploration by the turn of the century.
By the end of the 22nd Century Earth had explored all nearby star systems, and colonized their own thoroughly. This expansion led them to meet numerous alien races, and colonize several systems nearby in the Milky Way galaxy. The founding of the Earth Government Alliance was considered one of the highlights of the last century. Things looked to be progressing well until first contact was made with an alien species which could not be bargained with, or peacefully communicated with, the Ra’Steles.
The Ra’Steles are a race of reptilian humanoids who have looked at humans as slaves and a source of food in lean times. Because they likened humans to talking cows, none of Earth’s overtures for cooperation or dialogue were met with any real effort. The first salvos in what became the Great Space War, because it nearly took humanity to a real risk extinction before they gathered themselves and pushed back, occurred only 51 years ago. That war itself led to much innovation in technology, but it put humans on a war footing for the first time since they began exploring the cosmos, and the conflict lasted for a little more than 20 years.
All of this technological advancement defined the century, and midst the slog of war, it was this optimistic thread of activity which resulted in tools which allowed humanity to win that war. Perhaps because of this, much of the technology of the future fits the mold of the imaginings of sci-fi futurists from the 1930s through the 1950s. Ships have sleek lines, and resemble artistic renderings with fins, struts, and other structures which are unnecessary in a spacecraft.
While Earth won the war, it lost quite a bit as well. Not every colony could be supported during the fight against the aggressor’s waves of attacks and periods of hiding out. With entire sectors cut off for months if not years, many colonies went feral, failed entirely or survived. Of those who survived, few were willing to be reabsorbed into the Alliance once everything was over. Some of these colonies have become neutral powers every bit as self-sufficient as an alien world, while others have adapted for the worse to survive. Two examples of this latter phenomenon are the proliferation of pirates plying the space lanes and robbing colonies, shipping and unclaimed planets, and the Gorgon Regime, a human interstellar nation which is hostile to all other nations, and is built around a never ceasing war machine.
The Way Things Are: Space Patrol is steeped in the genre conventions of space opera, with glass bubble helmets over skintight jumpsuits, rayguns, ships that resemble rockets, bug eyed monsters and interstellar war when the brave members of the cast aren’t struggling against the wilds of some new planet they’ve discovered. Still, that doesn’t mean it is a pure reflection of the type of science fiction pulp writers wrote in the 30s, 40s and 50s.
Space Patrol draws upon elements of World War II to form its central storyline challenge. Everything is building towards all out war between EarthGov and the Gorgon Regime, two interstellar powers with allies of varying strength and prestige. Eventually, the whole galaxy will be drawn into the confrontation.