Jump to content

A Varunian Cameo


Recommended Posts

A while ago someone proposed to post some adventures to share ideas. Well, a full adventure would be

a bit too much for me to translate, but I can offer a "cameo", an example of one of the small sideline ad-

ventures the characters have to deal with now and then between the big adventures as the result of an

event roll.

Trouble at H-2

Construction Site H-2

„Habitat 2“, located about 600 km northeast of the Ghara Dome, is the construction site for the future

second habitat of the Varun Colony, a dome with a diameter of 130 m for approximately 2,000 inhabi-


The foundations of the new dome and of a nearby ocean current power plant are grown with Biocrete,

a fast growing genetically engineered coral. Once the foundations will be completed, Seacrete will be

used to build the dome itself, which will finally be sealed with several layers of Bioplast. Since even a

fast growing coral takes some years to create a structure, the construction work started soon after the

arrival of the first colonists on Varun, even before the first habitat was completed.

Right now H-2 consists of nothing more than a flat sandy plain with a low circular wall of artificial coral

reef, a couple of similar coral structures and a few containers for the equipment used by the workers who

occasionally visit the site to feed the coral and control its growth.

Here there are Predators

When the exploration team choose the site, the H-2 region appeared to be free of any dangerous native

creatures. Even the Plateau Spiders common in most parts of the Ghara Shallows were extremely rare in

this region. However, a few months after the Biocrete coral had been seeded, the first Sumatis began to

visit the site, and soon afterwards the extremely dangerous Species Alpha also made its first appearances.

A few days ago one of the workers at the site was attacked and severely wounded by a Species Alpha,

and his colleagues threaten to refuse to work at H-2 unless something is done soon to get rid of the steadily

increasing number of dangerous predators. The colony's aquafarmers also demand swift action, because

the presence of the predators will make aquaculture in this area almost impossible.

Conflicting Interests

While the workers, who are members of the Miners' Union, and the Aquafarmers ' Cooperative demand that

the Council orders the Security Service to kill at least the most dangerous predators, the Jain Alliance insists

that killing any native creatures except in self defense would be both immoral and a breach of the Colonial

District Authority's regulations. The New Society depicts the problem as an example of the Council's incom-

petence and attempts to use it in order to win additional votes in the upcoming referendum on the colony's

constitution. And the Council complains about a potential error made by the exploration team that chose the

site for H-2, blaming the problem on you.

You could ignore this problem, but it has already begun to damage your reputation, and it could soon lead

to a loss of Status, with all the consequences this would have for your career ...

You know there were no predators anywhere near the H-2 site when you made your survey, simply because

there was neither any potential prey nor any ecosystem that could have provided enough prey to attract

predators. There was only a flat plain, volcanic rock covered by sand. So something must have changed

there ...


The Problem

Plateau Spiders give birth to hundreds of tiny larvae that look a bit like Terran shrimps and are the pre-

ferred prey of Sumatis. Before the construction at H-2 began, these larvae avoided the region, because

there were no opportunities to hide from the Sumatis. But with the Biocrete coral walls this has changed,

the walls have lots of tiny cracks and holes where larvae can hide, and this attracted thousands of larvae

from neighbouring regions to the construction site. With the larvae came the Sumatis who hunt them,

and with the Sumatis came the Species Alpha who hunts the Sumatis.


Sumatis and Species Alpha - lots of them. They do not understand the concept of peaceful coexistence

with creatures that have the right size to be eaten.

Sumati's Fish

STR: 2D6 - 7

CON: 3D6 - 10 - 11

SIZ: 2D4 - 5

INT: 2 - 2

POW: 1D4 - 2 - 3

DEX: 2D6 - 7

Move: 7

Hit Points: 8

Damage Bonus: -1D4

Armour: none

Attacks: Poison Stinger 40 % POT 8 (intense pain, immediately)

Skills: Listen 75 %, Sense 75 %

Species Alpha

STR: 12D6+14 - 56

CON: 3D6+6 - 16 - 17

SIZ: 12D6+14 - 56

INT: 4 - 4

POW: 3D6 - 10 - 11

DEX: 2D6 - 7

Move: 8

Hit Points: 35

Damage Bonus: +5D6

Armour: 5-point shell

Attacks: Claw 50 % 1D6+db

Skills: Listen 75 %, Sense 75 %

The Solution

To kill the predators would only make the problem worse. There are far more predators around than

even an army of combat robots could kill, and the dead predators would only attract even more dan-

gerous scavengers and predators to the site. It is not wise to start a war against an entire biosphere.

To kill all the larvae would solve the problem at least temporarily, but there is no way to kill thousands

of tiny larvae individually, and any area effect weapon like poison could also damage or kill the Biocrete

coral and thereby ruin the entire construction project. The Council members would not be amused.

The best solution seems to use Bioplast or Seacrete to seal the lower finished parts of the coral walls,

closing the larvaes' hiding places and forcing them to migrate back to where they lived before the coral

walls offered them a new home.


Meanwhile I have edited this five times, and each time it reverted back to a formating mess when

I opened it the next time. Either I am too stupid for editing, or there is some problem ...

Edited by rust

"Mind like parachute, function only when open."

(Charlie Chan)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So the act of trying to build changed the environment and encouraged predators? How would you explain that to the Council and other interested parties? Eek! Any chance colonists could simply avoid the area until the coral has finished doing its job? Then you can move in and be as eco-unfriendly as necessary (explain to the Jain Alliance that colonists are merely harvesting the Alphas for food).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Any chance colonists could simply avoid the area until the coral has finished doing its job?

Unfortunately not, because someone has to visit the place occasionally to "feed" the

corals with a nutrient, because otherwise they would stop to grow and finally die.

Besides, the Plateau Spider larvae will one day become adult Plateau Spiders, and

a region overrun by Plateau Spiders would make it impossible to settle there.

"Mind like parachute, function only when open."

(Charlie Chan)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So.... where is the "unobtainium"? Or my favorite "reallyrarium"

No "unobtainium" in this cameo, I am afraid. :)

In my setting the cameos are straightforward and comparatively simple tasks

created as the results of event rolls. They give the characters an opportunity

to influence the development of the setting and to gain some experience and

to gain or lose some status, but they do not have the depth and importance of

a real adventure.

"Mind like parachute, function only when open."

(Charlie Chan)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

:thumb: Very cool. I have been curious to see what some of your senarios were like in the undersea setting.

The cameo idea is very good. It would be nice to have a dedicated space for this type of thing on the wiki--mini adventure ideas and the like. I find this type of thing very helpful when scratching my head for adventure possibilities. I am sure people on this site could come up with a lot of cool stuff.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree with the idea of "cameo adventures" (very similar to Pendragon's "short form" adventures). Often a lightly sketched out idea with some stats can be more useful that fully detailed adventures, since the full details might not mesh with other GM's campaigns.

Chaos stalks my world, but she's a big girl and can take of herself.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

:thumb: Very cool. I have been curious to see what some of your senarios were like in the undersea setting.

Thank you very much. :)

There are basically three types of Varunian adventures:

- exploration and environmental problems,

- internal conflicts within the colony,

- offworld entanglements.

The cameo is typical for an environmental theme, an example of an "offworld entanglements" adventure

could look like this:

The previous government of the Shiva System in the Core Worlds region of the Terran Federation subsi-

dized the emigration of Shivanian citizens as a means to reduce the population pressure in the densely

populated Shiva System. These subsidies enabled the Varunian colonists to establish their colony, and it

was planned to use the subsidies to bring more Shivanians to Varun to increase the size of the colony and

develop it. However, the recent elections in the Shiva System caused a change of the government, and

the new government has decided to cut all emigration subsidies and to use the finances for a birth control

program instead - there will be no more Shivanian colonists for Varun.

Soon after these news arrived on Varun, an Embassy Ship of the Terran Federation visits the colony. These

ships are huge mobile exhibition centers that distribute political, economic, technological and cultural informa-

tions from the Core Worlds and from other colonies in order to strengthen the connections between the va-

rious planets inhabited by humans.

On board of this Embassy Ship are delegations from several planets that want to make contacts with the co-

lonies of the Demidov Cluster, for example to sell their products (everything from software to machinery) or

to look for new sources of imports for their economies.

One of these delegations comes from the Shiva System, and this is most likely to cause a lot of problems. On

the one hand the Varunians want to stay on good terms with their original homeworld and still hope to convin-

ce the Shivanian government to support the colony project, on the other hand many Varunians are extremely

angry at the Shivanians because the end of the subsidies also means that they will not be able to bring their

friends and relatives to Varun as originally planned - and some few colonists might even plan something to

force the Shivanians to pay for the transport of their loved ones to Varun.

The player characters will be involved in the information exchange with the Embassy Ship (there will be some

most interesting new technologies and gadgets among the goods offered), in the diplomatic negotiations with

the Shivanian delegation and also in the security measures to protect this delegation from possible attacks by

angry colonists.

"Mind like parachute, function only when open."

(Charlie Chan)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...