Monday, August 27, 2018

Hard Space: Thoughts on World Generation

Hard Space inherits all its physical world data from Near Space, as well as its baseline map. However, I am now generating the colonies' world characteristics. Below are a few notes about this.

The key to everything are the colony's Generation and the world's habitability.

1st Gen colonies are relatively heavily populated (up to several millions) and have a more elaborate and powerful administration; 3rd Gen colonies have tiny populations and are typically quite lawless, at least outside the (small) main colony town/dome/mine. 2nd Gen colonies are in between.

People prefer to live on habitable, or almost-habitable worlds; even a tainted atmosphere is vastly preferable to vacuum or an Exotic atmosphere. Unless very mineral-rich, non-habitable worlds have outposts, with small populations and typically minimal administration. Habitable or near-habitable worlds have colonies, with larger populations, and the more complex government this entails.

Note that, as in much of the "source material", Hard Space has a nearly uniform tech level across the worlds. Every sanctioned colony is TL10, though much hardware is TL9 (as TL10 is very new). Also, I have already determined the starports of all sanctioned colonies.


Outposts (regardless of generation) have a population digit of 1d3. Most non-habitable rockballs are outposts. Add DM+1 for Starport D, or DM+2 for starport C.
1st Gen colonies have a population digit of 1d3+4.
2nd Gen colonies have a population digit of 1d3+2.
3rd gen colonies have a population digit if 1d3+1.

Most colonies are corporate colonies. Throw 1d6 per colony: on 1-4, this is a single corporate colony; on 5 this has multiple colonies (Gov 7); on 6 it is non-corporate (governmental or private initiative).
For non-corporate colonies, throw for government as per the Traveller (or CE) rules.

For corporate colonies, throw 1d6: 1, Gov 1; 2, Gov 3; 3, Gov 5; 4, Gov 8; 5, Gov 9; 6, Gov B.
Gov 1 - local corp focuses strictly on business and mostly ignores the bigger picture of governance. Weak governmental apparatus might be in place.
Gov 3 - local corp management runs things with little regard to those below.
Gov 5 - local corp department heads run their departments like personal fiefdoms.
Gov 8 - local corp runs a surprisingly efficient administrative apparatus with effective governance and meritocratic promotions. The corporate "ideal".
Gov 9 - local corp is a bureaucratic nightmare with poor leadership.
Gov B - local corp exec runs the place like his personal kingdom.

1st Generation - law is 1d6+Gov-2 for a minimum of 1 (sanctioned colonies always have some law).
2nd Generation - law is 1d6+Gov-4 for a minimum of 1.
2nd Generation - law is 1d6+Gov-5 for a minimum of 1.


  1. I think that there would be multiple colonies on a single planet. Even with a population in million the various worlds are mostly empty places.

    1. This is indeed one of the possibilities given here. Of course, many newer-generation colonies have far less than a million inhabitants, in many cases a few thousands, so this is less of an issue.