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Some Thoughts on Astrogation
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CRMcNeill
Director of Engineering
Director of Engineering


Joined: 05 Apr 2010
Posts: 11241
Location: Redding System, California Sector, on the I-5 Hyperspace Route.

PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 6:05 pm    Post subject: Some Thoughts on Astrogation Reply with quote

As part of establishing in-universe background, I've put some thought into how hyperspace routes are established and maintained. My working theory is that starships are equipped with flight recorders that track gravity and radiation levels over the course of the jump. This data is then turned over to the BoSS at their next port stop (commonly in trade for a discount on port and restocking fees), which is then used to generate a detailed map of the routes in question, with BoSS Scout ships being sent out to examine potential anomalies.

While no PC would be willing to have their data turned over to official sources for fear of it being used against them, the vast majority of the galaxy's traffic is official and legal in nature, which provides BoSS with a wealth of data used to maintain accurate hyperspace routes and update navcomputer data as needed.

However, the available data is dependent on the number of ships who travel that route.

As such, what I'm thinking of doing is basing the Base Difficulty for a hyperspace course on how well traveled it is, using the same categories found in the SW Sourcebook:
    Heavily-Traveled Route = Easy
    Common Route = Moderate
    Rarely-Traveled Route = Difficult
    Uncommon Route = Very Difficult
    "You want to go where?" = Heroic

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"No set of rules can cover every situation. It's expected that you will make up new rules to suit the needs of your game." - The Star Wars Roleplaying Game, 2R&E, pg. 69, WEG, 1996.

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jmanski
Arbiter-General (Moderator)


Joined: 06 Mar 2005
Posts: 2011
Location: Kansas

PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 6:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds like the "allow windows to report errors to better your experience" to me.... Wink

That's basically what I do, the less traveled a route, the more difficult.

I'm a simple kind of guy, so when I think of hyperspace I tend to visualize the highway system. The safest way to travel is via interstate highway.

But there might be a faster way using a shorter route with lesser known highways, county roads, and back roads. I've had success and failure in real life trying to find a shorter route; I take those as successful and failed "rolls".
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CRMcNeill
Director of Engineering
Director of Engineering


Joined: 05 Apr 2010
Posts: 11241
Location: Redding System, California Sector, on the I-5 Hyperspace Route.

PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 7:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jmanski wrote:
Sounds like the "allow windows to report errors to better your experience" to me.... Wink

Bren raised a similar objection in a different topic, and it's something I took into account. Essentially, no group of PCs in their right mind is going to be contributing into this system, but that won't stop them from making use of it. Possible options include:
    -Using out-of-the-way ports for restocking, where fewer questions are asked, and port officials may be willing to look the other way for the right price.

    -Independent agencies will have their own navigation databases, likely derived from BoSS, but kept separate for security reasons. The Empire has its Sector Fleet Navigation branch, the Alliance has Alliance MasterNav, various corporations will have their own private routes, and so on. The Empire and private corporations may have arrangements with BoSS to give them partial route data scrubbed for sensitive information.

    -The Alliance wouldn't have direct access to official data, but the data would be available for a price. In fact, it could be as simple as having a simple tramp freighter, operating completely aboveboard and legal, who just happens to rendezvous every now and then with an Alliance scout ship to share current nav data, which is then used to update Alliance MasterNav.


Quote:
That's basically what I do, the less traveled a route, the more difficult.

I'm a simple kind of guy, so when I think of hyperspace I tend to visualize the highway system. The safest way to travel is via interstate highway.

But there might be a faster way using a shorter route with lesser known highways, county roads, and back roads. I've had success and failure in real life trying to find a shorter route; I take those as successful and failed "rolls".

As a truck driver, it's my go-to metaphor as well. What I've found is that the off-interstate routes are generally only faster if the interstate is blocked for some reason. In the SWU, the only thing that can really block up a major hyperspace route would be an Imperial Interdiction. Obviously, that's something most PCs would prefer to avoid, but that doesn't really make the alternate route faster.
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Bren
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Joined: 19 Aug 2010
Posts: 3605
Location: Maryland, USA

PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 10:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

CRMcNeill wrote:
Bren raised a similar objection in a different topic, and it's something I took into account.
I noticed that. Very Happy

CRMcNeill wrote:
jmanski wrote:
I'm a simple kind of guy, so when I think of hyperspace I tend to visualize the highway system. The safest way to travel is via interstate highway.

But there might be a faster way using a shorter route with lesser known highways, county roads, and back roads. I've had success and failure in real life trying to find a shorter route; I take those as successful and failed "rolls".
As a truck driver, it's my go-to metaphor as well. What I've found is that the off-interstate routes are generally only faster if the interstate is blocked for some reason. In the SWU, the only thing that can really block up a major hyperspace route would be an Imperial Interdiction. Obviously, that's something most PCs would prefer to avoid, but that doesn't really make the alternate route faster.
I've been driving to Baltimore a lot lately and both Google and my GPS often route me off the highway and onto county roads and even city streets for part of the route. Usually this is due to a combination of traffic congestion and road construction. While I don't see construction translating directly to hyperspace lanes or routes, there might be nebular clouds, pulsars, or ion storms that have a similar temporary or periodic effect of increasing the time for travel or (more likely) raising the difficulty number.
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Naaman
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Joined: 29 Jul 2011
Posts: 2298

PostPosted: Sat Dec 30, 2017 4:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's true: the fastest way to get to a place is usually the main highways. In such cases, the PCs might generally take longer routes (assuming they are fugitives) that are less trafficked.

You might consider increasing the time required in addition to the difficulty... heck, it might be safest to "take the long way around" in some cases (which may also be the road less traveled, to boot).
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