CSI Port Loren WIP thread

jedion357's picture
August 18, 2019 - 1:13pm
Alright, fiancee wants to play Star Frontiers and its just us right now so I'm working up a CSI Port Loren investigative game. (one reason is she's a junky for CSI and true crime sort of shows and pod casts).

Benefits are that you are in Port Loren and can have more or less instant resupply and somewhat speedy back up in the form or local patrol officers.

PC(s) are local Port Loren police and since I interpret Port Loren to be one of the "mega cities" mentioned in the rules this makes the PLPD a de facto near planet wide police force. Note Star Law is tasked with sathar agents and interplanetary crime. But all other crime that happens on Gran Quivera is more or less within the purvue of the PLPD. PCs are dectectives and Crime lab technicians.

They have 45 hours to solve the crime at hand- stolen from the TV shown "The First 48" where if a crime is not solved in the first 48 hours chances of it ever being solved go way down. Gran Quivera's day is 15 hours so thus 45 hours. the penalty for not solving the crime in 45 hours is simply less exp.

So everything is about tracking time not SEU clips.

skill checks by PCs are generally 10 minutes but by an NPC in the lab 1 hour or 1d5 hours depending on what it is.

Data checks on a public data net take about 10 minutes (covers typing in search criteria, refining search, reading results and interpreting results) so 10 minutes for 1 item of data. a referee may just give 3 items of data and just rule 30 miniutes for research or he might wait for the players to ask for each item of info.

Travel takes time.

rest takes time and characters that dont take a rest must make a STA check or suffer a fatigue penalty after 15 and 30 hours.

Combat takes times and might require the writing of reports afterward and interviews by internal affairs as well.

interviewing and questioning NPCs will take time.

Goal is to amass enough data and clues to recommend to the solicitor general that an individual be brought up on charges. which can be roll played but will also require a PER check or a law skill check and a judgement call by the referee if they have figured out enough clues.

This is the basic idea I've put together so far, ideas, criticism, critique?

I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

jedion357's picture
August 18, 2019 - 3:21pm
This is my first foray into a crime scene investigation Star Frontiers Adventure. I will play test with the fiancee and refine it for submission to the magazine.

will use these maps:

The Escape
An escape pod is found on remote island half a world away containing a body. Could the remains be of a criminal that was thought to have escaped justice?

Escape pod details: The model TT13Beta replacement pod- is an outdated though near universal escape pod designed and marketed by Trans Travel to fit most common ship designs. Trans Travel has discontinued this model but licensed it to numerous manufactures across the Frontier making it extremely common and extremely difficult to trace to its point of origin. Two separate technician skill checks will reveal that the escape pod’s emergency beacon was sabotaged and its limited flight computer was programmed to seek a water landing (miraculously it landed on a small atoll).

The body is a mummified dralasite corpse (neuter phase), dressed in a generic and standard starship duty coverall designed for dralasites with 5 limbs. The ship suit bears some scorch marks and a close examination of the collar tab on the ship suit will reveal a name: Drogoll. There is no ID or other items. An autopsy (medical skill check) will reveal that the dralasite died of laser burns.

Data Net searches will reveal that there have been 12 star ship emergencies in orbit of ship that could have been equipped with the model TT13Beta pod. There were only two of those emergencies where not all of the discharged escape pods were accounted for. Stardust Dawn, a pacific class freighter out of Inner Reach, Dramune and Galaxy Tramp, a Trans Travel model V5 heavy freighter out of Terledrom, Fromeltar. In both cases the presumed occupant of the missing escape pods was a dralasite.

Renlo Dog on the Stardust Dawn and Rollo Dollo on the Galaxy Tramp. Renlo Dog (D Male phase) wanted criminal from Dramune. Sought on charges of piracy and murder by the Inner Reach militia. 50k reward for his capture. Disappeared 17 years ago during the Stardust Dawn disaster (atomic drive over load).

Rollo Dollo (D neuter phase) was a Trans Travel company astrogator and has been missing for 4 years Galaxy Tramp incident (hoaxed release of biological contaminants on board ship).

The name Drogoll turns up on the passenger manifest of the Stardust Dawn as Drogoll Swill (D neuter phase) a noted debator, philosopher and politician from Inner Reach that survived the Stardust Dawn disaster and settled in Port Loren. After the disaster Drogoll become an advocate for the poor and working classes and was elected to Port Loren city board of managers and is the favored candidate for one of the Council of Worlds seats from Prengular.

Questioning Drogoll: He will initially will deny knowing Renlo. He will recall giving a ship suit to a dralasite that had just begun to be able to generate 5 limbs on the voyage and thus needed a new ship suit to accommodate the new 5th limb. He will deny knowing how Renlo ended up dead in an escape pod and has no idea who would have wanted to kill him though it’s not surprising since Renlo was wanted for piracy and murder. He kept to himself on the voyage.

Drogoll Swill (D male phase) Resume: Famous debator and philosopher from Inner Reach who wrote two somewhat famous philosophical treatise. Since settling at Port Loren he has pursued a career in politics and social reform. Favored candidate for election to one of the Prengular seats on the Council of Worlds.

Real Resume: He is really Renlo Dog, a wanted criminal, pirate and murderer from Dramune. Now he is a rumored to be corrupt city official in Port Loren with ties to criminal organizations. He killed the real Drogoll Swill and stuffed his body in the sabotaged escape pod then began to pass himself off as Drogoll Swill never returning to Dramune lest his deception be uncovered. He also sabotaged the atomic drives of the Stardust Dawn causing them to overload and explode to help cover his identity change.

STR/STA: 40/40 DEX/RS: 40/40 INT/LOG: 50/50 PER/LDR: 50/30 IM: 4 PS: 2 Lie Detection: 25%

PSA: Technological Skills: Technician 6, Computers 2, Starship Engineer 1, Physch-social 1, Laser Weapons 3
Equipment Civilian Skein suit, Albedo screen, Power belt pack, laser pistol & 2 SEU clips.

Note: A subtle clue that the dralasite passing itself off as Drogoll is not Drogoll is that since the Stardust Dawn disaster Drogoll has only had 4 limbs while before that it had 5.

News Coverage of the Stardust Dawn disaster: Star Law called off the searched for Renlo’s escape pod after several weeks of finding nothing. The tracking data for the Prengular Space Watch were mysteriously hacked and corrupted making the tracking data for Renlo’s escape pod unusable. The engineer of the Stardust Dawn claimed that his engines must have been sabotaged because they had been recently overhauled and he was meticulous about maintenance.

Potential moves by Drogoll to cover his tracks:

1. A fire at the PLPD crime lab: Smoke from the ventilation system and fire alarms erupt at the crime lab building- while occupants evacuate firefighter bots storm into the facility to fight the fire and save lives. Except firefighter bots should take 1-2 minutes to arrive and one is there within 5 seconds of the alarm (LOG check to notice that discrepancy), also LOG check (+15 due to prior exposure to smoke grenades during training) to notice that the smoke is not from burning material but a smoke grenade. Fake Firefighter Robot: STA 100, Level 3 combat robot, Programs: Attack/Defense & Search and Destroy, Melee 30%, Damage 2d10, Special: self destruct device- 100 grams of TD-19 will destroy the robot and cause 5d10+25 within 1 meter of the robot and half damage between 1 and 2 meters. The Mission of the robot is to find the corpse of Drogoll and “rescue” it (which will cause it to totally disappear) or barring that destroy it with the self destruct device.

2. Group street tough warn the PC to leave off of investigating Drogoll who has done so much for the poor and working class. Threat is vague and not actionable by Star Law.

3. Ambush: two thugs attempt to kill the investigator at night on the streets of Port Loren. Thug 1 RW 40, M 30, PS 3, IM 6, RS 55, STA 55 Equipment: skein suit, sonic knife, auto pistol. Thug 2 RW 40, M 30, PS 3, IM 6, RS 55, STA 55 Equipment: skein suit, knife, gyro pistol. The thugs believe they were hired by a yazirian. They received credit transfers from a recently set up shell corporation the shell corporation can only be tracked by Computer skill check -10 which will reveal a computer terminal at a Rook Hill Construction

Solving the Case Dralasite DNA can will alternately prove that the corpse is related to known relatives of Drogoll Swill or it will match conclusively not match Renlo Dog’s DNA profile on file with the authorities in Dramune. The PCs can then make the case that Drogoll Swill must really be Renlo Dog.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

Shadow Shack's picture
Shadow Shack
August 19, 2019 - 2:07pm
Would fatigue really be an issue? After all it's a 24/7 police force so NPC cops & detectives on the next shift can pick up any invstigation while PCs sleep...just invoke the 1-1d5 hour rule vs PC ten minute checks that you mentioned.
I'm not overly fond of Zeb's Guide...nor do I have any qualms stating why. Tongue out

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jedion357's picture
August 20, 2019 - 4:41am
Shadow Shack wrote:
Would fatigue really be an issue? After all it's a 24/7 police force so NPC cops & detectives on the next shift can pick up any invstigation while PCs sleep...just invoke the 1-1d5 hour rule vs PC ten minute checks that you mentioned.

Actaully me and the fiancee have run through 70% of the adventure I wrote and she's only chewed up 19 hours so either I need to write in some red herrings and other encounters to chew up the time or drop the time element altogether.

She likes the time element because as a true crime junky she would rabbit hole on every little trivial detail wondering if its a clue and she feels the time pressure forces her to stay focused and move right along.

So while true other officers would pick up slack I like the fatigue issue so that you can have the NPC captain/Lt. telling the PCs to go home and take a rest. and in a lot of police proceedural TV shows the investigating cop that pushes themselves too hard seems to be a thing.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!