Trek Among The Derelicts (Session 0)
Here we are, wherever here is.
It all started with a wistful urge to play Alone Among The Derelicts again. That game is really well built and fun, but I keep thinking about how short it is, and how easy it is to die.
Then I thought– why not take the limiters off? Why not use it exclusively as a set of tables, a way to build a map, and when I draw a joker (deadly monster) well, I can just make that some kind of horrible enemy encounter I’d have to fight through. I can even go so far as to mark it on my map and shuffle the joker back in. Double trouble!
All I’d need then is a setting and an RPG system to run it with.
Briefly I considered running it as an Aliens game, and using Free League’s Alien RPG, but I think I’ll save the Alien universe for a Death in Space solo run down the line. Next up on the list of possible settings that sounded fun was Mechwarrior Destiny, but I’d have to pick up the book, learn the system and play it without mechs, which would be weird.
Then it hit me: my old go-to. Star Trek!
Ambitiously enough, I figured that I would use the actual Star Trek Adventures system (I have the starter box.) Here's Lt. Commander Elara Wulfe in ST:A format:
Of course, as soon as I finished putting together my character and started actually learning the system, I decided that STA was too crunchy and fiddly for my purposes. I briefly considered converting Elara Wulfe over to the SEACAT system (because I’m in love with UVG right now) but as easy as that system is to run, I really feel like you need a game with magic spells in order to do it justice. Next, I thought about converting over to RISUS, because that’s my go-to system for beer-and-pretzels levels of simplicity and abstraction, but ultimately I decided against it. Too simple, too abstract. Then it hit me: Why not use Highest Skies? I haven’t written up any play reports for that system yet, and I designed it to be the perfect level of crunch for me personally. Since she’s a Lt. Commander, I gave her three extra dice to play with beyond the starting seven.
So here she is, my character, converted over to the Highest Skies RPG:
Lt. Commander Elara Wulfe
Red (Health): 2
Blue (Bio-Science): 3
White (Technical): 2
Green (Agility): 2
Black (Shooting): 1
For the finer point particulars, I’ll be using Alone Among The Derelicts for map creation, with each layout of cards placed being a “section” that is closed off because of “the accident” that has severely crippled the ship and made crossing from section to section difficult, if not impossible. I’ll be using Eryssel's Fate Dice Oracle mechanics for yes/no questions and I’ll be using The Highest Skies system for the actual system mechanics. To generate challenges, I’ll be using the free version of ChatGPT and picking and choosing which ones are reasonable and interesting (as sometimes what it generates is completely unusable in the current version.)
Are you ready for Session 1? I am! Let's do this!