Heart of Star In a distant future, the gap between man and the stars has been bridged. The expanse of the galaxy was found to be more alive and more hostile than previously imagined. But the discovery of a new energy source continues to drive human kind deeper and deeper into the depths of the void; and further into the realm of the mysterious Specters that claim it as their own. More than an energy source, the crystal shards that brave souls venture into the depths of the galaxy for emit a unique radiation that interacts with the universe at the sub-quantum level. Harnessing these shards and tuning their energies can produce massive amounts of power and generate fields with unique and advantageous properties. These properties make the shards incredibly valuable commodities to governments and to trading organizations. It is for the chance at unbelievable wealth that the Shard Seekers risk their lives to harvest shards from the space faring creatures that live on the outer rim of the galaxy. They venture alone or in small groups to trap the more mundane shard baring life forms while avoiding the more dangerous ones and especially the questionably sentient Specters whose raids have become more frequent in recent times. The Game: This game will be science fiction with a hint of steam-punk in style as the shard seekers tend to use simplistic but reliable shard powered tools and devices. The feel will largely be up to you however. The game will begin with a call to rescue a shard seeker stranded out on the Outer Rim. The story is going to be written mostly by YOU, and as such there are positions for a main protagonist and some supporting protagonist available to anyone with experience who wants them. These roles come with a few minimal constraints that shouldn’t effect the development of the character you want to create. Contact me by PM if you are interested. My goal is for this game to read like an actual story and to prioritize writing. As such, we will start out with some different rules than other games, but everything will be open to negotiation as the game progresses. As this is my first RPG as GM, I’m trying to keep it relatively short, not more than three months at most depending on how it goes. I’m going for a slow and steady pace. It’s about quality over quantity, so a few posts a week will be sufficient. Posting surges are inevitable and OK, just be aware that I may not have as much time as you and need to keep the plot on course. Also, breaks are expected and OK, just let us know and we can work around it. To learn about the universe and the feel of the game please read these short story snippets on which this game is loosely based: Shard Seeker, Heart of Star 1, 2, 3. The short stories above are meant as a guide to the universe but are not law. They are meant to provide a feel for the game for you to follow. You will be starting at a Shard Seeker rendezvous, where they gather to trade in the shards they have collected and to re-stock their supplies. There will be many types of people at the gathering, from dealers and company representatives to, tradesmen and military escorts. You may have your pick of any profession you can imagine, however, we will need at least a couple Shard Seekers on board for the game to work. Universe basics Below are a few basics concepts in the universe in which we will be playing that you need to know. More will be added in the discussion thread as needed, but much of the interpretation of the world will be left to you. Shard Fields De-energizing/defensive shield – These fields convert any energy including, laser blasts and kinetic energy, into matter. The efficiency of this transfer is proportional to the strength of the shard, the intensity of the field at the point of impact and the amount of energy to be converted. Middle range energy impacts, such as bullets and energy blasts are stopped easily, while interactions at the farther ends of the spectrum, such as a stealthy knife strike or a nuclear explosion will pass through the field more effectively. Energizing/Blast field – Essentially the opposite of a defense shield; this field converts a percentage of matter into a stream of radiation that follows the trajectory of the original object when it contacted the field. Again, the efficiency of the transfer is proportional to the intensity of the field, and the strength of the shard. In general the efficiency is much lower than a defensive field and results in a blast more akin to a pulse laser than an atomic bomb. Tachyon field: Sub quantum Tachyon energy was discovered to flow between the stars in celestial winds. Tach-fields harness these currents and translate them into kinetic energy, moving shuttles, skiffs and shard seekers on glowing energy sails across and between the planets. Shard fields are shaped and controlled by special carbon fiber rods. Be creative with how you use the shards, feel free to use the short story as a guide but keep your devices relatively simple and not so powerful that they god-mode the game. Shard Harnesses The shard harnesses are lightweight suits designed to house that the shards used to generate many of the fields used by shard seekers. Typically a single large shard is housed at the front of the body. Shard harnesses also house many of the other devices that are used, protect the wearer from the elements, generate artificial gravity using tachyon winds, and are typically controlled with help from an AI. Specters: Specters are dangerous space faring creatures that will be developed more in story. They range in size from around a meter to larger than the largest cargo vessel. Characters need to know that they are intelligent and seem to hate humans. Their sentience is questionable, but one thing is certain they, want your shards. A specter cannot be truly killed, but a strong blast at its core will slow it down enough to allow escape. AI: Most individuals on the frontier have a companion AI to control their shards fields, do menial tasks, and keep them sane. AI’s are not quite self aware, but can develop personalities. However, please avoid turning your AI into a second character as this will become cumbersome. In the game they will be used primarily to develop your characters and expose the plot. As such the GM may take over your AI from time to time to move the plot further. Please PM me with any questions you may have about the universe or game until the discussion thread is up. Then feel free to ask there. The Discussion Thread is now up, please direct any questions there. Character Template: Please PM the GM for approval before posting a character. Keep your templates short and sweet, I prefer you to introduce your character by telling in story rather than by posting a detailed profile. The exception being the history and equipment which you should PM ONLY to the GM so that they can be not only approved but also so that the plot can be integrated with your character. I'm looking for 4-6 players to start with. Name: Gender: Occupation: Personality: Age: History & Equipment: (PLEASE PM TO THE GM ONLY) The Rules: 1. GM is law and can break and modify his own rules without notice. 2. No god moding. Strive for balance among all other players. 3. No controlling other characters or named Non-Player Characters (NPCs). 4. You cannot kill other players or named NPCs unless told to do so. 5. Players can make generic (unnamed) NPCs if necessary so long as they do not obscure the goals or plot and do not persist for more than a couple posts. 6. No out of character content. 7. Please use third person perspective to maintain the flow of the story 8. Write the NEXT part of the story. Avoid re-capping. Use showing in the present to show how the character responds to previous posts; avoid re-telling entire previous posts from your character’s perspective. 9. First Post: Character Template 10. Second Post: Introduction in the bar (to be described when the game begins) 11. All questions should be directed to the GM. 12. No one-liners or short posts. Let’s shoot for 100 words + 13. Read all posts 14. Abandoned characters will be re-assigned or removed by GM. 15. FLAMING, INSULTING, OR ANY OTHER TYPE OF HARSHNESS THAT IS DELIBERATELY USED TO HURT SOMEONE ELSE’S FEELINGS WILL NOT BE TOLERATED AT ALL, NOR ACCEPTED ANYWHERE ELSE AROUND THE FORUM. 16. Edit before posting. 17. View the Discussion Thread and short stories for directions in the game and for less formal details. 18. Dialogue from other posts should be put in BOLD BLUE text 19. Please feel welcome to make suggestions and negotiate with the GM! The goal start date for posting will be the second week of August, so have your profiles in by then!