Second revision. This is potentially the final version and will be subjected to a few revisions and corrects. Aside from that it is pretty much complete unless some people want me to add more things or clarify.
Space Pirates: The Age of Piracy
The Long Distance Jump Scout program was the brainchild of some obscure scientist who finally figured out the nuances of long range navigation. As soon as this program went public, humanity found itself in a race to chart the stars with other races, some hostile. This begins the Great Scouting and sparks a new era of exploration, exploitation and warfare.
Fast forward a few hundred years and the known galaxy is pretty much the same as it was before the Great Scouting, only that the borders have grown and the races are interconnected though economic trade. Control of the new borders is slow to catch up allowing crime to flourish.
That urge to make quick and easy money never gets old.
FACTIONS OF THE KNOWN GALAXY
 Common Weapons and Technology
 Known Locations of the Known Galaxy
 Ship types
 Known Pirate ships and Pirate Factions
 THE SHIP AND ITS CREW
 Your Character Sheet!
-FACTIONS OF THE KNOWN GALAXY-Human
- Highly fragmented race with dozens of independent star systems and ideologies. The major human powers are the United Systems Concordiate, Outer Rim Union, Celestial Empire, Royal Commonwealth and Star Republic. Human technology is advanced enough to be highly competitive with the older races and human sensor, stealth and shield technology is among the best. Human starships are simple and rugged. Human weaponry consists of projectiles encased in energy cocoons.
-United Systems Concordiate – The most technologically advanced human nation in the known galaxy. Dozens of inhabited planets are under its protection and its Exploration Corp is among the most prestigious government institution in human space. Many mega-corporations do business here, making the USC the most economically prosperous with companies such as SpaceTech, Manasis Dynamics, Material Defender Systems, and Uxor-Storm Shipyards are among the biggest corporations in the USC. High income inequality, corporate corruption and excessive public surveillance mar this otherwise great nation. Its society is very liberal and culture progresses very quickly here. The USC Defense Forces are highly trained and maintains the best equipment available. Zintii
- Outer Rim Union – a desperate unity of abandoned colonies, exiled corporate employees, and disgruntled soldiers. They maintain a perilous hold on their part of space, constantly being raided by pirates, mercenaries and aggressive corporations. Their military is a militia is mainly composed of repurposed civilian vessels and military grade weapons illegally obtained from dubious sellers. Many pirates originate from the ORU. The ORU is situated near Celestial and Zintii Space.
-Celestial Empire- The largest and most populous of all the human nations, it is also a repressive dictatorship where the Heavenly Emperor and the noble elite hold power where the other 87 percent toil in factories, agriculture fields or mining operations until they die. Its economic might stems from cheap labor, mass produced weaponry and remanufacturing. They have fought several wars with the major human nations and often come out worse each time. They maintain the largest military and have over one billion personnel in its ranks. A massive propaganda and personality cult exist in the Empire: failures are almost never reported, enemies are demonized, service to the Empire and the Emperor is held as one’s life goal. The average citizen will never see or hear anything outside of state authorized media and remain ignorant of the wider picture. The Imperial Celestial Argosy is considered the largest naval organization in the known galaxy.
- Royal Commonwealth – An advanced human nation where the monarchy is the head of state and the Senate maintains the functions of the state. Its primary export high quality equipment, consumer goods, and starship components. It maintains a very close alliance with the USC and trade between the two is almost unregulated. Its military is smaller compared to its bigger neighbors but equal in capability and its intelligence gathering capabilities is unparallel by any nation. Combat Drone and military sensory equipment developed by the Commonwealth is among the best.
-Star Republics –Though it is a relatively large nation with a large population, it is rather economically backwards with many of the member planets being simple rural agriculture colonies. Only the capital and two other star systems have any sort of industry. The combined industrial capabilities are barely equal with one industrialized USC or Royal Commonwealth planet. Industry policies and laws have strangled any sort of attempt to increase higher tech industrialization and most commentators have said the Star Republics have much “wasted potential”. Corruption, poverty, lack of basic services and a systemic illiteracy among the vast majority of the population are major stumbling blocks to its potential rise. The Star Republics maintains the second largest human military and is the largest importer of weapons in all the human nations. They have fought three small wars against the Celestial Empire and have won the last two. Many pirates originate from the Star Republics, unable to maintain full stomachs with honest jobs.
– A feline-like race originating from the planet of Ciavi. They have a tendency to be highly belligerent to both themselves and to other races. They have fought numerous wars against other races and have carved out a large unified empire that caters only to Zinti. The Zinti Empire mainly exports armaments and military equipment with little regard to consumer products. Their highly patriarchal culture ensures that only the males can succeed and the females are reduced to mere chattel and semi intelligence. The Zintii military maintains a large number of soldiers and are high feared throughout the known galaxy as they are highly efficient hunters. Zintii stealth technology is arguably equal if not superior to human stealth. Armor tech is very good as the Zintii have a tendency to ram their starships into enemy vessels during battle.
-Zinti Imperial Lancers Corp– a branch of the Zintii Imperial Forces that serve as the vanguard of any invasion. Their name comes from the distinctive lance-rifles that collapse into a small hand held weapon. Their equipment is rugged and weapons are often geared to close combat. In the known galaxy former Lancers are prized mercenaries. Catians
-Zintii Imperial Fleet – A massive armada consisting of thousands of starships with the singular purpose of brutally sending the heroic light of the Emperor through the stars. Zintii starships are known to be angular and designed for forward attack. Zintii tactics are somewhat unimaginative and their “scream n’ leap” tendencies have resulted in embarrassing defeats and loss of prestige.
– Somewhere in Zintii history some dissident faction gathered its followers and leaves for more fertile grounds. The Catians were one such group and they have settled on a tropical planet known as Ma’Cati. Catians are genetically similar to Zintii, down the last genetic chain. The most glaring difference is societal: all Catians are equal regardless of gender and instead of glorification of battle; family and values are promoted instead. Expanding to other planets and eventually meeting humans, they are significant trading partners and a major economic presence. The Catian military is highly professional and well trained. Many Catians have intermingled with human society and as a result the USC and the Catian Union are allies. Grekkas
– Insectoids that are roughly similar to ants. Highly intelligent and very loyal they tend to follow those who exhibit leadership qualities similar to their queen. Each Grekka is member of the colony with a set skill set and place in the colony. To deviate from this is to invite ridicule and punishment. Their society is separated into castes: the Queen, Princes/Princesses, Soldiers/Warriors, and Workers. The Queen is the defacto ruler of the colony, producing female children to become part of the colony. Princes are often sent to other colonies to secure allies and rights to reproduce. Princesses are the future of the existing colony, seeking the right to take over the old queen when the time is right. Soldiers and Warriors are the military of the colony with Soldiers being intelligent combatants and Warriors being hulking, semi-intelligent but deadly effective weapons of war. Workers are the lowest of the Grekka society and work constantly for the betterment of the colony. In times of war the colony throws its might at producing weapons in which their production capability has no equal. War between the different colonies happen constantly with different queens managing their more serious disputes with firepower. The Grekka race is fragmented even more than humans with dozens of colonies vying for superiority over others. Only when a single queen has populated each rival colony with their own loyal princesses or conquered everyone will the entire Grekka race be united and free to crush the other races. This will never happen. Only Princes and soldiers with permission from their queens are allowed to roam the galaxy.
-Shimmering Jewel – Colony on the edge of Grekka space. Has fought dozens of brief border conflicts with the Zintii and Celestial Empire. Considered the most militarized and territorial colony ever encountered. Groulien
-Bright Sunlight – Colony with significant trade agreements with other races. Trades minerals and resources for foodstuffs and manufactured goods. One of the richest and prosperous colonies.
-Winter Ice – Colony located on a very cold planet. Their military is widely regarded to be the best in cold climate warfare.
-Molten Rock – Colony located on a high temperature planet with significant volcanic activity. Exports minerals and mercenaries trained in urban warfare. Their manufacturing capability is extremely high even for Grekka standards.
– Short stocky hog like creatures that originate from the hot and humid planet of Groul. They are a common sight on border worlds, milling about looking for work or waiting for the right employer to snatch them up. Due to considerable poor urban conditions on their worlds, many low level Grouliens often leave for greener pastures and are widely considered unwanted species in Human, Catian and Grekka space and deported in vast numbers back home. They avoid Zintii space due to a kill on sight attitude by the warlike felines (Rumors that Grouliens taste like bacon to Zintii). Despite this Grouliens are among the best engineers, business dealers, and hard workers the galaxy has seen. Economic power is derived from cheap labor, exports and manufacturing. The Galactic Trade Alliance and the Mining & Extraction Federation are among the largest commerce guilds in the galaxy and have their headquarters on Groul. Private military fleets from various Groulien corporations are the only means of defense for Groulien Combine yet they spend more time staring each other down than actual defense.
-Galactic Trade Alliance- the largest trade builds in known space. Due to Groulien preference for their own culture and business, the GTA holds many assets in other race’s territories and maintains a huge consumer good shopping brand throughout the known galaxy. Their best product is Grubby Pudding. The GTA also maintains a private navy (the GTA Merchant and Defense Fleet) for its own use. Lezan
-Mining & Extraction Federation-A powerful mining guild that sets mining standard and provides equipment for mining companies. A service they provide is security and pirates are loath to attack MEF protected facilities as the MEF Fleet is powerful.
-Cartographer Guild - A guild that provides mapping services for colonists and deep space voyagers. They have a close relationship with the USC’s Exploration Corp.
-InterSys Bank- A zealous bank that deals in loans, investments and personal wealth for its customers. Many poor nations are customers to the ISB and the mere existence of the feared ISB Policy Enforcement Fleet is enough to persuade many to repay on time. The ISB PEF often targets pirates.
– a race of humanoid reptilians originating from a hot dry planet and widely known for their xenophobic attitudes and covert dealing. The Lezan Imperium is among the more isolated powers and most dangerous due their unpredictable nature. One moment they can nice and friendly, the other they can be cold and warlike. The Lezan operates an elaborate propaganda campaign for outsiders to disseminate the notion of the Lezan as a powerful and invincible nation (which no one takes seriously). Lezan also operates an intense intelligence gathering and sabotage campaign against declared and potential enemies. As a result pirate ships from the Lezan Imperium are often treated with suspicion among their fellow pirates due to the high percentage of military grade equipment and weaponry rarely seen inside a typical pirate vessel. This leads to rumors of Lezan pirate ships being actually privateers and a means of foreign policy for the Imperium. Lezans who find themselves across their borders are often deported back to the Imperium. The Lezan are a major exporter of raw materials and imports high technology goods. The Lezan Imperial Military are said to be at least two generations behind the rest of the galaxy technology wise. Askan
– a humanoid species with pale bluish skin and four arms. They have adapted themselves to be part of their machinery and maintain a symbiotic relationship with their technology. Askans often implant themselves with nanobots which allow them to interface with any Askan technology without much training. Askan medical and biotechnology is unrivalled in the known galaxy and many Askans are employed as bio-researchers, medical staff, biologists and technicians all around. The Askan military is a powerful force fielding large amounts of sleek, angular, petal-shaped warships with powerful forward attack focused weaponry. The Thermal Lance technology now standard on warship of the many nations originated from this species. This race enjoys favorable trade with humans, Grouliens and Grekkas.
-Common Weapons and Technology-Trans-Space Drive
– the prime mover of any starship and number one enabler of the galactic economy. Without this technology galactic civilization will grind to a halt. Human TSDs are capable of “flashing” where a sudden flood of energy will recharge a TSD to full power at the expense of potentially crippling the cooling systems. Askan TSDs are more accurate and longer ranged. Lezan TSDs are the slowest and least capable drive systems. Zintii TSDs are have high performance but prone to burnouts after a few dozen hours. Grekka TSDs are slow but extremely tough. Groulien TSDs are generally reliable and have all around performance. Catians operate Human or Groulien TSDs. Jumping into Trans Space generally requires complex math, large amounts of power and a star map as routes to specific star systems may take multiple jumps to arrive. TS jump routes are the scouted routes generally safe for use. Jumping using routes not recommended is courting death.Gravity Plate Systems
– a system that recreates gravity. Most human warships are not equipped with gravity plate systems due to fears of malfunction in battle. As a result many human warships are equipped with rotating section to recreate gravity. Human civilian ships are not constrained by this fear and openly equip gravity plate. Other races utilize gravity plate as a means to increase efficiency in battle.
Bio-Sync- an Askan technology that allows people with specific implants to interface with complex machines and take over the processing functions. Askan warships are known to employ at least one crewmember due to this technology. Implants are available to the mass market for consumer technology and the Askan reserve their more powerful Bio-Sync tech for themselves. Thermal Lance
– An Askan invention that is widely copied by the other races. It accelerates beam of intense, focused beam of molten metal towards a target. Mounted on many warships and often used as a short to mid range anti-ship weapon. Neutrino Beam Cannon
- A gravitationally manipulated beam of neutrinos fired from a large cannon. Serves as a mid to long range weapon. Pirates covet such weapons as this will give them to power to challenge naval warships. Pulse Weaponry
– widely used technology to accelerate projectiles encased in energy to aid in penetration. Ranges from personal to anti-ship mountings. All ammunition is caseless.
-4.55mm Pulse – a widely used human ammunition type by the USC, Commonwealth and ORU. Fires a high velocity sabot of metal encased in an energy sheath. Outperforms the 8mm pulse in penetration and is used in the USC’s R19, Royal Commonwealths L22 and the ORU’s S265 rifles. Bio-Orb
-8.2mm Pulse – very cheap standard ammunition of the Celestial Empire. Used for over 100 years and subjected to many changes. Used in their extremely reliable, cheap, durable, and iconic HM-55 rifles widely spread throughout human space and standard issue for ORU and Star Republics militaries. The pirates choice!
- 6.5mm Pulse – the replacement for the Celestial Empire’s long serving 8.2mm pulse. The 6.5mm pulse is designed to be used with the HM-88 rifle that entered service recently. Has yet to appear in weapons market in large enough numbers.
-10mm Pulse- A widely used pistol ammunition. Many races use this ammunition due to its cheap and powerful qualities.
– standard ammunition for Vaskan weaponry. Supplies material for Vaskan rifles that fire high impact sliver shells. Each orb can contain up to 500 slivers. Laser Weaponry
– old fashioned directed energy weapon. Incredibly reliable but not very powerful. Recharge the ammo packs in the sunlight. Shock Lance Mk. 8
– A widely sought Zintii weapon. This weapon combined ceremonial use with deadly capability. Fires a bolt of high energy to kill, vaporize, or stun. It can extend into a long, energy bladed pike, unpowered staff, or rifle type weapon or contract into a pistol sized weapon easy to fit into a belt. Mk. 9 models are scheduled to replace the Mk 8s currently in service with the Zintii Imperial Lancer Corp. Powered Armor
– Armor type used by almost all the known races. Human Power Armor is dependent on the nation: USC utilizes high performance types with jump jets and adaptive armor for its soldiers, the Royal Commonwealth also utilizes the same design tech as the USC but with added stealth. The Celestial Empire tends to brute strength, heavy protection and simplistic but bulky construction. The Zintii types are geared for strength augmentation and integrate bladed weaponry into the suit. Individual Grekka colonies manufacture their own designs based on their own requirements. Grouilien types are geared toward protection. Catians rely on modified human designs and the Askan use a synthetic crystalline material to construct form fitting armor. Anyone inside powered armor is a force to be reckoned with. Mechs
– Simply put each race has their own preference over the use of mechs. Smaller personal versions are often described as powered armor. Larger versions the size of houses or city blocks are often used by the militaries to provide support for ground troops. Superheavy, skyscraper-tall versions are increasingly impractical and complex as they quickly become magnets for enemy fire (As demonstrated by USC “Bolo” superheavy AI tanks during the 3rd Heaven’s Gate War when a company of four Mark 25 Bolo tanks annihilated 48 Celestial Empire’s superheavy mech units in 30 minutes with no losses). Civilian versions are often used for construction but pirates quickly strap weapons to create a makeshift weapon. Zintii and Grekkas make heavy use of extremely large mechs but have recently scaled back after the performance of the USC Mark 25 Bolo against similar human mech versions. Askan have no equivalent super heavy mech and need none as they concentrate on personal and larger combat versions. Trans-Space Communications
– A specialized version of the Trans Space Drive mated to a simple radio or laser communication relay. These miniaturized TSD systems opens an extremely microscopic TS window and sends a transmission through. Receivers home onto specific TS window frequencies to receive transmissions. Due to the complexity and expense of these systems alternatives are available such as TS bouys, the TransComn Network or courier messaging. Real time communications is possible with TS communications systems. Trans-Space Tracking Network
– a network of TS sensors utilize to track the energy wake of TSD equipped starships. Various methods are being used to hide, mask, or obscure the TSD wake. Human, Zintii and Askan military TD drives are considered the most silent drives in the entire known galaxy.
-Known Locations of the Known Galaxy-Independent Zones
– a zone considered to be lawless and filled with pirates. Many private colonial ventures have colonized the star systems and even fewer survive their first decade. Pirates operate here in large numbers.Groulien Space
– A very porous place where pirates often launch attacks on cargo carriers and undefended freight convoys heading to the Independent Zones. Zintii Space
– An area inhabited by Zintii. Those attempting to enter without prior approval will be arrested or killed. Catian Space
- A heavily policed area. Pirate ships are always detected when attempting to jump into a Catian held star system.Celestial Space
– A very fortified area of space. Entering this area is not recommended. USC Space
– A heavily policed area. Pirate ships are always detected when attempting to jump into a USC held star system. Royal Commonwealth Space
- A heavily policed area. Pirate ships are always detected when attempting to jump into a Commonwealth held star systemORU Sectors
– Lawless sectors where the Outer Rim Union barely holds control. Pirate vessels base themselves here and prowl daily for fresh victims. Star Republics Space
- A very porous place where pirates often launch attacks on cargo carriers and undefended freight convoys heading to the Independent Zones. Many pirates base themselves here. Grekka Space
– A sector of space where the balance of power shifts daily. Though Grekka colonies will not attack outsiders, many will attempt to block your passage or goad others into firing first. Gather travel information of specific colonies and plan your jump route accordingly. Lezan Space
– A very fortified area of space. Entering this area is not recommended.Askan Space
- A heavily policed area. Pirate ships are always detected when attempting to jump into an Askan held star system.
-Ship types-Military Ships
-Strikecraft – fighters with limited trans-space jump capability. Range from simple scout craft to massive ship killing bombers. Civilian Ship types
-Patrol Ship/Corvette/Gunship- Commonly encountered in more civilized regions of space.
- Auxiliary ships – coming in various sizes these ships provide combat or logistical support for naval warships.
- Frigate- Smallest warship type. Most pirate vessels are roughly similar to these. Seen carrying out deep space patrol and rapid reaction response. A presence of a naval frigate is enough to make pirates run.
-Destroyer – a larger warship. General purpose warship and enough to make a pirate break out in cold sweat. Long range and often assigned to hunter killer operations. Destroyers are often used to hunt down pirates.
- Cruiser – a large warship capable of independent operations and long term missions in deep space. Can carry a small amount of strikecraft. Pirates run when a cruiser comes out to play.
- Carrier- a large capital ship that carries strikecraft. Run away as quick as you can!
-Dreadnought/Battlecruiser – capital ships carrying heavy weaponry and armor. Battlecruisers are lighter and can carry strikecraft. Dreadnoughts are built solely for combat with enemy ships and carry no strikecraft. Pirates will often run away and never look back.
-Bulk Carrier – Carries cargo. Unpacked and unorganized cargo. Like metal ores.
-Cargo Ship – Carries cargo. Neatly packed into the holds.
-Container Ship – Large cargo containers stacked outside the ship’s hull.
-Cruise Liner – Raid passenger liner, be hunted down forever. High risk and high rewards for raiding these vessels.
-Fuel Tanker- Carries fuel. Be careful not to blow it up.
-Known Pirate ships and Pirate Factions-Brünhild
– Pirate ship of the infamous pirate captain Reinhard. Former Imperial Celestial Argosy warship that went renegade when ordered to bomb a rebellious colony. Last sighted in the Korhald Sector, Independent Zones. The Brünhild has been known to engage warships with a good chance of winning. The Celestial Empire currently has a kill on sight orders for this ship and her crew. Dark Posterior
- A pirate ship that has a pirate captain with a black colored prosthetic butt. Captain “Blackbutt” is the butt of jokes of many space travelers until they see his cannons up close. Many a freighter captain has laughed their last laugh because of him. If you hear the audio transcripts you can somewhat hear farts in the background. Valkyrie Fleet
- a fleet of pirates led by the Zintii Pirate Lord Sa’mak the Devil-Hero. Has over 30 ships in his command and currently operates in the ORU Sector and Independent Zones.
-Valkryie – A Star Republic starship captured and modified by Lord Sa’mak into his flagship. Gaian Effort
-Howta’Mak – a Zintii cruiser that was found adrift and pressed into service.
- Deadly Intent – A Groulien bulk carrier transformed into a large carrier for a motley assortment of converted civilian craft used as fighters.
-Junkyard Dawg – A space tug with grapple hooks that hacks into ship systems when impacted on the target’s hull.
- a human-centric terror group that a galaxy-wide presence in an attempt to force the races to abandon their colonization, mining and terraforming efforts. Split into many different cells these cells range from nomadic to outright extremist.
-THE SHIP AND ITS CREW-
Your ship depends on the captain’s preference. The captain decides what is best and which craft to choose. The crew can voice their opinions and can influence the captain in the selection. Once a ship is chosen and the money paid, you are stuck with that ship until you can steal, beg, buy or salvage a new one.
The crew is made up of several important personnel:Captain
– Ruler of the ship. Often a man or woman of great skill and reputation. Or a mad drunk with delusions of grandeur. Can pilot the ship if needed. First Mate
- Ruler of the ship when the captain is not looking or is drunk. A trusted person to keep the ship and the crew in top condition. Can pilot the ship if needed. Navigator
- the person who makes sure you are not jumping into a star. Can pilot the ship if needed. Helmsman
– the person who pilots the ship and is sober. Sensor Tech
– person who mans the sensors to check for enemy ships, hazards and potential treasure. Communications Officer
– Person who keeps in contact with your shady business partners. Medical Officer
- Guy sneezing too much? Caught a cold? Lop off his arm and test the new prosthesis you stole from the medical ship. Chief Engineer
– Keep the ship running. Dismantle the coffee pot for spare parts. Weapons Officer
– Shoot lasers. Annoy the captain to shoot more targets. Cook
- Give the crew food poisoning. Crewmember
– Conduct boarding actions. Help the Chief Engineer fix the hole the chef made with his cooking. Mae sure the weapons are manned and shooting targets the captain says to target.
-Your Character Sheet!-
Crew Preference 1
Crew Preference 2