Nexus: Memories of Silver
It has been theorized for a long time been theorized that many worlds exist. Worlds that might be separated by as much as different physical laws, or as little as a few different electrons. People spoke of different, alternate histories. No one has ever been able to prove it however... until now.
Marking time between different universes is impossible. All that is known is that at one instant there was an event. It is unclear whether areas of space were moved, or simply copied, but now they are here, in a new universe foreign to all of them. A nexus of realities.
Some are shocked by the transition, others saved from terrible fates, but the question is now, can they survive one another?
Making A Nexus nation
Simplicity itself. Simply assign your points to each of the categories until you run out. That'll give you the basis around which to write up the details of your nation.
Modifiers listed apply bonus points towards a particular rank, rather than directly modifying the Rank itself. For example, (Infrastructure +3) means that three bonus points are automatically added to the Infrastructure category, and (Growth -2) means that two points are subtracted from Growth. The player must make up the remainder to gain a new rank, if only part of the point cost is fulfilled; excess points are wasted.
Negative modifiers do not need to be bought up to zero, though values below 0 can be assumed to be particularly exaggerated.
You have 35 points to build your nation
- Rank 0 (0 points): A backwater nowhere solar system, the Nexus equivalent of a city-state.
- Rank 1 (2 points): A small alliance of habitats, a single minor star cluster. Adds +1 Growth Potential.
- Rank 2 (3 points): A lesser state, though one that cannot be ignored. An exceptionally populous minor cluster or else one of several nations on a major cluster. Adds +1 to Infrastructure.
- Rank 3 (5 points): A fairly typical midsized nation, the typical owners of a major star cluster or multiple smaller ones. Adds +1 to Infrastructure and Space Fleet.
- Rank 4 (6 points): A large nation with a substantial, diverse population spread across many solar systems. Adds +2 to Space Fleet and Infrastructure but suffers -1 to Growth Potential and Transhumanism.
- Rank 5 (7 points): A top-tier state with a massive population. Space-China. Adds +3 to Infrastructure, +2 to Space Fleet, but suffers -1 to Transhumanism and -2 to Growth Potential.
While this assumes human or human-equivalent populations, it can also be used to model alien races as well. For races with innate psychic abilities, see Magic below.
- Rank 0 (0 points): None at all! Your people are the same old Homo Sapiens Sapiens from the 20th century. Badass normal powers combine!
- Rank 1 (1 point): Minor genetic engineering has spliced in desirable traits from exceptional humans, but except for a few outliers, everyone remains functionally ‘natural’ if generally healthier, fitter and perhaps smarter than 20th century humans.
- Rank 2 (2 points): Significant genetic engineering allows for the implementation of more radical changes through transgenic techniques. Truly superior specimens are becoming the norm. Reproductive speciation is a possible side-effect, though uncommon and can be mediated..
- Rank 3 (4 points): ‘Strong’ transhumanism starts to skirt the edge of what’s no longer truly ‘human’, at least in the eyes of some. Reproductive speciation is inevitable and discrimination from baselines is not uncommon
- Rank 4 (6 points): You are in many ways barely human. Massive cybernetics and genetic enhancements, melding the human body with exotic nanosymbiots or phase imaging polymers, or downloading your entire population smart matter entities comes under this level. Add +1 Growth Potential but suffer -1 Diplomacy when dealing with any power with Transhumanism ranked at 2 or less.
- Rank 0 (0 points): Well, you could probably rearm a warship . . . Construction Rating 20, max size 4
- Rank 1 (1 point): Construction Rating 30, max size 6
- Rank 2 (2 points): Construction Rating 40, max size 10
- Rank 3 (3 points): Construction Rating 50, max size 15
- Rank 4 (4 points): Construction Rating 60, max size 40
- Rank 5 (5 points): Massive, well developed planetary and spaceborn industry. Construction Rating 70, max size 100
- Every additional Rank of Infrastructure adds 5 to the Construction Rating
- Rank 0 (0 points): Overcrowding and resource shortages are chronic; you need relief and now!
- Rank 1 (1 point): Either planning or natural growth has put you at a comfortable maximum, but you have nowhere to grow.
- Rank 2 (2 points): You have room to grow, but not much
- Rank 3 (3 points): Most of your resources have been set up to be exploited but you haven't even begun to do so yet.
- Rank 4 (4 points): So many natural resources you're probably selling them to people.
- Rank 5 (5 points): The Frontier. Resources are plentiful, with plenty you probably haven’t even begun to tap yet.
- Rank 0 (0 points): Your nation simply sees little need for a large military; 6x Infrastructure in support
- Rank 1 (1 point): 8x Infrastructure in support
- Rank 2 (2 points): 12x Infrastructure in support
- Rank 3 (3 points): 14x Infrastructure in support
- Rank 4 (4 points): 16x Infrastructure in support
- Rank 5 (5 points): 18x Infrastructure in support
- Every Rank past 5 adds 1x to the multiplier (19x, 20x, etc)
- Rank 0 (0 points): No deep space fleet whatsoever, just a handful of short-range corvettes. 50 fleet points
- Rank 1 (1 point): 200 fleet points
- Rank 2 (2 points): 350 fleet points
- Rank 3 (3 points): 490 fleet points
- Rank 4 (4 points): 620 fleet points
- Rank 5 (5 points): 740 fleet points
- Every Rank past 5 adds +100 fleet points
As the Nexus is a meeting point for all manner of different polities and ideologies, the arts of diplomacy are all the more important. While this attribute primarily affects NPCs, states with 0 diplomacy going and making alliances with everyone neighboring PC can expect to get modhammered.
- Rank 0 (0 points): Space North Korea or similarly unpleasant and insular regimes.
- Rank 1 (1 point): Diplomatic blunders or simple lack of care is common. You're not quite playing on Diety, but the popular press is rarely favorable to you.
- Rank 2 (2 points): You are just another body in the Hyper Galactic Space UN.
- Rank 3 (4 points): Your diplomats are tireless and your nation often displays local leadership, with the occasional flashes of greatness.
- Rank 4 (6 points): Your leaders routinely expect to get Nobel Peace Prizes every year they're in power.
- Rank 0 (0 points): Sensitive information regularly gets lost on laptops.
- Rank 1 (1 point): Typical hypercorp security measures.
- Rank 2 (2 points): Run of the mill intelligence apparatus.
- Rank 3 (4 points): Many Bothans died to bring us this information.
- Rank 4 (6 points): Sure, I can get the information you want chummer. Got the nuyen?
- Rank 0 (0 points): Your nation’s overall advancement level in fundamental fields such as energy generation, metallurgy, etc is below the Nexus norm. Major powers that have low technology like this almost certainly compensate with an assload of industry.
- Rank 1 (4 points): Average advancement, no glaring weaknesses or strong points.
- Rank 2 (8 points): An impressive display of technological aptitude that puts you above most of your peers. Basically, you’re The Star Kingdom of Manticore.
It has become recognized that technology across the multiverse tends to solve similar issues in similar ways. The Nexus has proven to be an excellent example, as a strong majority of the connected universes show technology that is similar and sometimes downright indistinguishable from that of the Nexus polities.
- Rank 0 (0 points): You lack some critical technologies, most commonly shielding andor energy weapons. Early Babylon 5, Battlestar Galactica and Halo humans are popular examples of this. Plucky baseline powers go!
- Rank 1 (2 points): Your technology is pretty much universally understood if perhaps not used; generic ray guns, generic railguns, generic shields, generic gravity plating, genetic glowing sublight rockets. Get the picture? Later-era Babylon 5, Star Wars without the wacky superweapons, Freespace, Wing Commander . . .
- Rank 2 (3 points): You’ve got one or two ‘secret weapons’ that can be expected to work in your favor; N-Jammers, transporters, inertialess drives, etc. Mass Effect or Andromeda might sit here, thanks to their excellent gravity technology and zoomy ships.
- Rank 3 (5 points): Your technology base is strongly divergent from the norm, with many of the technologies your nation possesses being fairly unique and providing at least a short-term strong advantage against an unprepared opponent. Star Trek would float around here.
- Rank 4 (8 points): Your technology base is fundamentally different from the norm and has some aspects that would be entire incompatible with the ‘great baseline’; guns that teleport explosives right through shields, propulsion systems that allow for instantaneous teleportation and other sorts of wanky superscience. The Culture’s general concepts (given that it’s also obscenely powerful and way outside of game scope) would be on this level.
The so-called Emergent Technologies are ones that promise to radically reshape the human condition. Not terribly popular in the Nexus, they are irregularly scattered throughout the known multiverse with no real correlation to overall technology level.
- Rank 0 (0 points): Safetech only; while the overall advancement level might be high, there is no access (probably deliberately) to nanotechnology, advanced AIs and the like. The reimagined Battlestar Galactica is the archetype here
- Rank 1 (1 point): You have a few examples of emergent technologies, though they are almost certainly kept under (very) tight control and may not even be publically acknowledged. An example of this level is Halo, which has a smattering of AIs and cybernetics of generally primitive (if effective) design.
- Rank 2 (3 points): Cornucopias and similar devices have begun to radically reshape your economy. Industry is faster and more flexible than ever before. Star Trek is firmly at this level, though in a much more ‘floppytech’ paradigm.
- Rank 3 (6 points): You’ve passed into the New Economy, though the dreams of post-scarcity and TA-style instant construction haven’t materialized. Adds +1 bonus points to Unique Technology. Eclipse Phase and similar settings would be at this level, as would Supreme Commander (conceptually though not with the ridiculous build speeds)
Stuff that doesn’t just push the notoriously lax laws of scifi science, but subverts them entirely. Magic mostly operates on the more ‘personal’ level, since there isn’t a terribly big difference between a mile-long space battleship armed with plasma cannons or with magic firebolts.
- Rank 0 (0 points): You scrupulously obey the laws of physics.
- Rank 1 (1 point): This is fairly small-time stuff like Jedi Mind tricks and similar cantrips, or the presence of just a (literal) handful of more talented individuals. Some of it may even be ‘scientific’; cyberpunk mind-reading, Cylon resurrection at a distance, Envoy training, etc.
- Rank 2 (2 points): More powerful and more systemic paranormal powers are present in your nation. Your typical Psy-Cops would be at this level. Mass Effect human biotics (fairly rare and relatively weak) would be at this level, as would the presence of Gundam Newtypes in any number.
- Rank 3 (4 points): The presence of powerful organizations such as the Jedi Order in its prime would sit here, as well as Asari and Krogan biotics (common and fairly powerful).
- Rank 4 (6 points): The people of your nation have evolved or somehow manifest nearly ubiquitous ‘magic’, like the Protoss or Eldar. Outlier individuals can, with proper dramatic timing, unleash massive events like Palpatine’s force storms in the Dark Empire comic series, or any example of the 40k Emperor.
The Generic States of SpaceAmerica
The following is a stereotypical baseline power out of typical Western pop-scifi. A mashup of Star Wars, Babylon 5, Halo and Battlestar Galactica.
Population: Rank 3 (5; +1 infrastructure, +1 space fleet)
Transhumanism: Rank 0 (0)
Infrastructure: Rank 5 (4 + 1)
Growth Potential: Rank 3 (3)
Military Support: Rank 5 (5)
Space Fleet: Rank 6 (5 + 1)
Diplomacy: Rank 3 (3)
Espionage: Rank 2 (2)
General Advancement: Rank 1 (4)
Unique Technologies: Rank 1 (2)
Emergent Technologies: Rank 0 (0)
Magic: Rank 1 (1)
The Republic of Transhumania
The 'new wave' of transhumanist science fiction.
Population: Rank 2 (3; +1 infrastructure)
Transhumanism: Rank 3 (4)
Infrastructure: Rank 3 (2 + 1)
Growth Potential: Rank 3 (3)
Military Support: Rank 3 (3)
Space Fleet: Rank 2 (2)
Diplomacy: Rank 2 (2)
Espionage: Rank 4 (6)
General Advancement: Rank 0 (0)
Unique Technologies: Rank 3 (4 + 1)
Emergent Technologies: Rank 3 (6; +1 unique tech)
Magic: Rank 0
People's Socialist States of Techwankia
A thought experiment in maxing out technology.
Population: Rank 1 (2; +1 growth potential)
Transhumanism: Rank 4 (6)
Infrastructure: Rank 2 (2)
Growth Potential: Rank 1 (0 + 1)
Military Support: Rank 2 (2)
Space Fleet: Rank 2 (2)
Diplomacy: Rank 0
Espionage: Rank 0
General Advancement: Rank 2 (8)
Unique Technologies: Rank 4 (7 + 1)
Emergent Technologies: Rank 3 (6; +1 unique tech)
Magic: Rank 0 (0)
Making your Fleet
Some of these warships may carry their own small (Size 0) vessels along with them, either because they're carriers or some form of omniship with its own fighter compliment.
Construction is done quarterly, so each power has 4 opportunities to build new ships per year, unused construction points can be carried over to the next quarter. A power builds at its full construction rating up to its fleet support rating. Once it exceeds this rating, it's construction drops to 50% of normal until it reaches 25% more ships than its fleet support rating, at which point it drops to 25% of the usual rating. at +75% of fleet support, no more construction maybe performed. Note that having more fleet than you can support is not recommended as it also causes spare parts shortages and a degradation of combat effectiveness.
Your starting fleet works just the same as ships built in game, but you have a number of points equal to your space fleet rating.
Any power may also build fighter and bomber bases and planetary based or orbital fortresses and gun platforms. These devices are built exactly like ships, but do not require the use of the same support limit, having their own.
It is assumed that each power has some level of planetary defenses automatically, fortresses which are constructed merely add to this total.
- Ship construction times: Each ship builds at the rate of 25 points per quarter.
Building a fleet is done by the interaction of two fields; Size and Quality. Size is essentially the size (or power) of the unit in question; larger units are stronger than smaller ones and cost more. By contrast, Quality is trading numbers for capability at no change in cost. As such, the cost of a unit is equal to its size rating.
Quality ratings and explanations are as follows:
- Flotilla units are the most numerous type of ship, ranging from things that aren't even ships at all (fighter wings, etc) to WWII-style destroyers right to the stereotypical background space battleships from Legend of the Galactic Heroes. Everything else equal, a Flotilla is the most powerful expenditure of points, albeit one with limits. A Flotilla is normally about a dozen ships (or more, if aerospace or other particularly tiny things).
- Squadron units are the mid-range units, conventionally more modern and individually capable escort ships or 'cruiser' type ships. For a given size value, squadron ships tend to be larger (light cruisers vs destroyer leaders, for example) but obviously less numerous; a squadron is normally 4-6 ships.
- Division units are the big beatstick and in general division warships are considered 'capital' ships; high-end warships also fall here. The archetype is non-heroic supporting character battleships or highly capable warships with all the bells and whistles. Division units normally come in 2s or 3s. Everything else equal, a division has the least firepower but the most flexibility and best soft factors.
- Heroic units are always bought individually. They are basically individual divisional units (and thus have about half the effectiveness) but normally have additional abilities such as a wave motion gun and, of course, are character shielded and/or supernally lucky making them rather difficult to actually destroy as opposed to drive off. No more than 10% of your entire fleet may be heroic units.
Size ratings and explanations are as follows: (note that all quality levels are available up to size 15, the explanation is just guidelines)
- Size 1: Flotilla scale: 1/2-crew aerospace craft, drones, etc.
- Size 2: Flotilla scale: Small destroyers, attack boats, bombers.
- Size 3: Squadron scale: Protected cruisers.
- Size 4: Division scale: Pre-dreadnoughts, armored cruisers or equivalent baby capital ships. Flotilla scale: Archetypical WWII destroyer.
- Size 5: Squadron scale: Light cruisers or more specialized ships like monitors.
- Size 6: Division scale: Lighter but still capable capital ships or light carriers. Flotilla scale: A set of destroyer leaders or scout cruisers.
- Size 7: Squadron scale: Fairly conventional heavy cruisers.
- Size 8: Division scale: The stereotypical battleship. Flotilla scale: LOGH Background battleships.
- Size 9: Squadron scale: Extremely powerful escorts like Arleigh Burkes.
- Size 10: Division scale: Oversized battleships like the Yamato or supercarriers like the Nimitz. Flotilla scale: An entire production run of memetic super-Shimakazes or a fleet of Standard-type battleships.
- Size 15: Very Large Capital Ship: Super-sized warships like the Zentraedi battlewagons or a squadron of Star Destroyers.
- Size 40: Mobile Base: Mother Carriers, City Ships, Super Star Destroyers. These are effectively 'heroic' due to sheer size and are always purchased as individuals.
- Size 100: Battle Moons: Fortress Iserlohn. You may only have one such unit at game start and these are effectively 'heroic' due to sheer size and are always purchased as individuals.
At the end of each year, powers grow. This is done by gaining new points which can be spent just like starting points equal to their growth potential -1.
If this leaves you with -1 points you must lose -1 points from somewhere, or find a source of new materials to maintain yourself.
All changes are subject to GM supervision
Gaining Growth Potential via story
It is possible to gain growth potential not just via the stats on your sheet, but by making story posts. There are several rules governing these posts however. First, any changes are subject to GM approval, as with normal growth potential points. Second, and more importantly, different types of actions will affect different stats. There are other potential stories which could give benefits, but these must be arranged on a case by case basis.
- Opening up Trade with another power, receiving trade from another power, relaxing economic protections
- Affect Infrastructure, losses from negative growth potential
- 2: Colonization
- You colonize new worlds, fight hostile natives, or make deals with them or the like.
- Affect Population
- 3:Upgrade Program
- Undergo Widescale Options
- Affect Transhumanism
- 4:Give Tech/Steal Tech
- You are given tech by another power, alternatively, you steal tech from another power.
- Affect Technology/Magic