Bugbear in the Playground
Vistas of a New World
VISTAS OF A NEW WORLD
Original Recruitment Post
Five years ago, the idea of Atomic Power was only a dream. You have made that dream a reality. You have seized upon the most nebulous of ideas and translated them into actualities. You have built cities where none were known before. You have constructed industrial plants of a magnitude and to a precision heretofore deemed impossible. You built the weapon which ended the War and thereby saved countless American lives. With regard to peacetime applications, you have raised the curtain on vistas of a new world.
-Lt. General Leslie Groves (ret), in his farewell address
When Lt. General Groves spoke of a new world, he was speaking in metaphor, referring to the potential application of atomic energy to peaceful endeavors. The real truth of the matter was that he was being literal, although he did not know it. The detonation of atomic weapons opened a portal to a new world, one where magic and fantasy lived.
In Vistas of a New World, you are put in charge of a department exploring an entirely new world.
The Story So Far...
- American president Franklin D. Roosevelt receives the Einstein–Szilárd letter, which warns of the danger of the atomic bomb and specifically points out that Nazi Germany might already be working on such a thing. In response to the letter, FDR authorizes the Advisory Committee on Uranium to investigate possible options.
- The Manhattan Project is established under the command of General Leslie Groves. The Project is given two sites, which eventually become Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Los Alamos National Laboratory.
-The first successful nuclear explosion occurs near Alamogordo, New Mexico. One month later, an atomic bomb is dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. World War II soon ends.
-Operation Crossroads begins the testing of nuclear weapons in the Pacific Proving Grounds. During Test Baker, naval ships are exposed to nuclear fallout to determine it's lethality and test cleanup methods. Live animals are also exposed to radiation. The testing reveals the woeful inadequacy of existing methods of cleanup
-The Manhattan Project is dissolved. It's scientific responsibilities are taken over by the United States Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) while it's military responsibilities are taken over by the Armed Forces Special Weapons Project (AFSWP).
-Project Chimney Sweep is created under the command of AFSWP. It is tasked with determining new methods of radioactive cleanup and starts with the remaining ships from Operation Crossroads.
-General Groves retires. He is replaced by Nelson Hollender, who is promoted to major general and chief of the AFSWP.
-Project Chimney Sweep is moved to the original Trinity test site to conduct tests on the cleanup of natural materials. To assist with the testing, Pete Aumann, a physicist who worked on the Manhattan Project, is assigned to provide detection equipment and his expertise.
1949 "First Lightning"
-The Soviet Union detonates a nuclear bomb, becoming the world's second nuclear power.
-Beginning of the Korean War.
-Pete Aumann's team detects unusually high levels of electromagnetic interference at the Trinity site. He puts forth the radical idea that the EM interference comes from damage at the atomic level caused by the original atomic bomb that, for some as-yet-determined reason, was not caused by other nuclear detonations. His theory is at first rejected, but absent any other explanations, he is given to go-ahead to continue experimentation. Project Chimney Sweep begins construction of testing facilities (mostly re-purposed Manhattan Project facilities).
-Pete Aumann's team reaches a breakthrough. They are able to prove the existence of the atomic damage and, more importantly, are able to expand and contract the damage through the application of large amounts of electricity.
-After being given permission by the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) and the President, Pete Aumann and his team send a critical amount of energy into the "tear", forming a stable portal for 0.38 seconds. Through further testing, they are able to keep the portal open for over 8 seconds before it contracts to it's original size.
-The Special Logistics Detachment (SLD) is formed under the direct command of Maj. General Nelson Hollender. It's purpose is to travel through the portal and make a report of what they find.
-The first fusion bomb is tested.
-The first SLD expedition returns. They report that there is another world at the end of the portal, which appears remarkably similar to pre-industrial Europe. There is even a native society of humans (or human-like beings), though the expedition purposefully avoided contact. More strangely, the laws of physics appear to be different on the other side, as several members of the expedition report what can only be described as "magic".
-A number of departments are formed under the general umbrella of the SLD. They are to be headed by hand-picked members of the military and civilians. Each department is to be given considerable independence in achieving it's goals, though they all ultimately still report to Maj. General Nelson Hollender (and the JCS).
1954 The game begins.
The rules for this game are slightly different from the normal Total War rules
The first difference is that we will be using quantity and quality
as distinct parts of a stat. Quantity represents how much of something you have. For things like Military or Industry, it represents the size of your forces or factories, while for something like Morale, it represents the resistance to being changed. Quality represents how well you're able to do something. In addition, higher quality increases the chance of critical effects - both bad and good. High quality requires innovation and risk-taking, which means when you fail, you fail in exciting and new ways. (In general, there's a "soft cap" of quality of about 10. There's no cap on quantity, but every two full increases is about a doubling or so.)
The main difference is the addition of what are called "work groups". Each department (which is headed by a PC or NPC) has under it a number of work groups. Work groups are how you get (almost) anything done in the game world. Each work group can be assigned a task and it completes that task based on it's stats. Both departments and work groups have stats, as described below. You can create additional work groups, as well as splitting and combining work groups for a price, though - for my sanity - please try to limit the splitting/combining.
Department StatsSpecialties and Technology
- Economy (ECO): How easily and quickly you're able to get your hands on something. Economy represents not just your cash and cash flow, but also contacts and transportation. Quality represents quickness, while quantity represents amount. High quality means you get your things quickly and in good shape, while high quantity means you can get more expensive things without breaking the bank. You may have multiple different economies.
- Opinion (OP): How NPCs feel about your department. Whereas diplomacy represents the ability to convince somebody to do what they wouldn't normally do, opinions represents their natural level of willingness to help (or harm) you. Quality represents their current feelings, while quantity represents the depth of those feelings. High quality means that they like you, while high quantity means that their feelings are deep and abiding. You may have multiple different opinions (and will).
Work Group Stats
Note: except for Morale, not every work group is going to have every stat. In fact, most work groups will only have one or two stats.
- Military (MIL): The work group's ability to project physical power.
- Industry (IND): The work group's ability to produce goods. This includes both manufactured goods and raw materials.
- Fieldcraft (FLD): The work group's ability to move quickly and without being noticed in all manner of terrain. It also includes navigation, pursuit, and evasion.
- Research (RES): The work group's ability to understand and development new technologies.
- Diplomacy (DIP): The work group's ability to convince other people to do what you want them to do.
- Espionage (ESP): The work group's ability to steal intelligence, subvert agents, and defend against the same.
- Magery (MAG): The work group's ability to use powers that violate the laws of physics.
- Morale (MOR): How ready the work group is to do what you need them to do. Quality represents current feelings, while quantity represents the resistance to change.
In addition to simply improving the quality of an stat, you can also give an sat a specialty, which increases the effective quality of an stat when doing a particular task. Each work group can have a specialty for each stat. For instance, Work Group Baker could be given a specialty of Military [Urban] and Magery [Fire], while Work Group Charlie could be given a specialty of Magery [Scrying]. When doing the appropriate task, a specialty increases the quality by ++.Game Turn
Technology is similar to specialties, with several important differences. First, the bonus it provides is only +, though it stacks with a specialty and you can have multiple technologies (though this is rare). Second, if, in the opinion of the GM (that's me!), a technology becomes prevalent, then it's adoption becomes so ubiquitous that it no longer provides a bonus. Essentially, it becomes the assumption that any work group of sufficient quality already has the technology and it is integrated into any future work groups of such quality. As a result, the GM may reduce the quality of the stat of any work group which does not have that technology.
For example, let's say that Work Group R&D develops Starlight scope, which provides a bonus to Military operations done during the night. If other work groups adopt this technology, it eventually becomes the norm - the standard tactics of all military forces will adapt to use this technology. At this point, anybody who doesn't have the technology is facing a significant problem as they have not adapted quickly enough to deal with this new technology. All work groups without the technology lose quality and work groups with the technology no longer apply a bonus. Increases in quality represent work groups finally adapting to the technology or finding ways around their lack of it.
Each turn represents one in-game season (Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter). I want to make each turn relatively quick. We'll start out at about a real-life week per turn and then start reducing it when people get all settled in.
To sign up, you must post three things. First, a short description (a few sentences to a paragraph) of what goals your department was founded on. Second, a short description (a paragraph or three) about the history of your department leader. Finally, you should provide a short description (a few sentences to a paragraph) about your first work group and which stats it has (around three or so). You can have Magery, but don't expect to have a greater quality than + (this represents academic knowledge of existing Earth folktales, superstition, and occult history).
The above is a way of demonstrating that you're capable of being imaginative within certain constraints and that you're capable of sufficient spelling and grammar. While the occasional typo is expected and undertantable
, yur sentances shuldnt look lke dis.
Be aware that each department starts out with the stats below:
Opinion - U.S. Gov't:
You've been more or less hand-picked for this assignment, but your command is untested and there are a lot of people who think that this will catastrophically fail and are just waiting to prove it.Economy - Department:
You have a large up-front investment of money from the Gov't and almost no oversight on your expenditure, but your annual budget is pretty lowEconomy - U.S. Gov't:
You have the support of the U.S. Gov't, but since the money expenditure needs to be hidden, that slows everything down (to mention nothing about all the forms you have to fill out). Short of a tank, you can requisition almost anything and get it. Eventually.
While your department may have additional stats, you will need to provide good reasons for it and don't be surprised if you are penalized.
Race and Gender
I obviously don't want to make anybody uncomfortable and at the same time I want to keep on the good side of forum rules. That being said, there is important information you should be aware of if you want your department leader to be a woman or a minority.
The army was officially desegregated by Executive Order 9981 signed into law by President Truman in 1948. It wasn't until 1950, during the Korean War, that practicality forced the integration of black and white units. If you wish to play a department leader who is a black soldier, you most likely distinguished yourself in the Korean War, though that's not the only possibility.
Women, through the Women's Army Corp (WAC), played a key role in many parts of World War II. Most importantly for our purposes, lots of WAC were part of the Manhattan Project so it's natural enough that some military women would become part of the SLD. It would be expected that a female takes the "safe" jobs, but practicality might force integration as well.
Minorities and women department leaders can also come from civilian pursuits.
In any case, you will not be penalized from playing a minority or woman department leader. Since your appointment was hand-picked, it is assumed that you distinguished yourself to a significant degree - enough to overcome any natural prejudices.
Civilian vs. Military
You are free to designate your department leader as being either civilian or military. Major, Lt. Colonel, or Colonel would be an appropriate rank. Whatever the case, the unique circumstances of the Special Logistic Detachment mean that you are given exceptional freedom, among which is the ability to ignore normal chain of command. You report directly to Major General Nelson Hollender and the direct chain of command to the Joint Chiefs. It is quite within your rights to firmly - but politely - tell anybody else to shove it (at least while acting in their official duties).
You will not be penalized for playing a civilian or a solder. Civilians commanding soldiers are, effectively, given a temporary rank while performing their services under the SLD.
|ArcaneStomper||Bureau of Extra Territorial Indigenous Affairs||Link|
|Captain obvious||Extra-Territorial Air Squadron||Link|
|Durmatagno||Industrial Arms and Armor Research||Link|
|hydroplatypus||The American Data Analysis Panel||Link|
|Umbranar||Portal Security Force Alpha||Link|
|razovor||Anglo-Iranian Industrial Department||Link|
"It had a spell put on it by an old fakir," said the sergeant-major, "a very holy man. He wanted to show that fate ruled people's lives, and that those who interfered with it did so to their sorrow."
Last edited by TooManySecrets : 10-19-2012 at 05:28 PM.