Sysgen Oddities

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Re: Sysgen Oddities

Postby AlexeiTimoshenko on Sat 08 Dec 2012 23:30

Crucis wrote:Don't want to lose the water world. It seems like a staple of sci-fi. Besides, I like the imagery better than a jungle world. Plus, it limits dry land, thus providing a good excuse to limit population.


I don't disagree that ocean planets should be included. My idea on the jungle planet is vegetation so dense that there is very little open ground for a population to inhabit. They also tend to be a sci fi staple. "Midworld" from Alan Dean Foster is a good example.

Crucis wrote:Well, Ceres is almost large enough to reach my definition of moon, at about a 475 km radius IIRC. But generally speaking, I don't think that we should assume that the average planetoid is quite so large for the game's purposes.


I can accept objects a bit larger than Ceres for the Lagrangian moons. They should be able to exist for long periods of time. I'm not sure that a big Jovian moon would be as stable in a Lagrangian orbit.
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Re: Sysgen Oddities

Postby Crucis on Sat 08 Dec 2012 23:40

AlexeiTimoshenko wrote:
Crucis wrote:Don't want to lose the water world. It seems like a staple of sci-fi. Besides, I like the imagery better than a jungle world. Plus, it limits dry land, thus providing a good excuse to limit population.


I don't disagree that ocean planets should be included. My idea on the jungle planet is vegetation so dense that there is very little open ground for a population to inhabit. They also tend to be a sci fi staple. "Midworld" from Alan Dean Foster is a good example.


I'm thinking that chain saws and weed whackers will still work quite well 500 yrs from now. Those jungles won't stand a chance! Seriously though, I have a hard time believing that a planet would be so totally choked with jungles. Sure, there'd probably be a lot of them. But I guess that I tend to think that most worlds are going to have somewhat more diverse vegetation and so forth. It's one thing for a Desert or Arid world to seem rather bland in this regard, simply due to the lack of water to support lots of vegetation. But such a homogeneous type of planetary vegetation seems odd to me. Maybe it's just a lack of imagination on my part.







Crucis wrote:Well, Ceres is almost large enough to reach my definition of moon, at about a 475 km radius IIRC. But generally speaking, I don't think that we should assume that the average planetoid is quite so large for the game's purposes.


I can accept objects a bit larger than Ceres for the Lagrangian moons. They should be able to exist for long periods of time. I'm not sure that a big Jovian moon would be as stable in a Lagrangian orbit.


Ah, but that's the beauty of saying that it's a moon. I don't have to say that it's a Jovian sized moon. It can be a moon much closer to the small end and still qualify. And in the end, such a moon would probably be closer in size to Ceres than to Ganymede, particularly since Ceres is only barely under the 500 km radius minimum at 475 km. ;)
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Re: Sysgen Oddities

Postby AlexeiTimoshenko on Sun 09 Dec 2012 06:53

It's been more than 30 years since I read "Misworld" but from what I remember, the rain forest is a kilometer high and so dense that almost no light reaches the surface. The natives live about halfway up the the trees. Above you've got nasty avian predators, while below the typical beastie (six legged, like on Sphinx) maxes a hexapuma seem like a house pet. Some of the death worlds in 40k are similar in the essentially, the entire planet is trying to have you for a snack.

I'm thinking that such a world would have extensive water, but most of it would be in shallow seas and swamps at the base of the jungle, with little deep open water compared to an ocean world. Think of it as the Everglades with a dense canopy of half mile high trees.

If you went with 6 temperature/water extremes, you could have ocean worlds be warm/wet and scrubland like West Texas be warm/dry. That way you get the water worlds, while the dry variant would need extensive irrigation to support any sizable population.
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Re: Sysgen Oddities

Postby Crucis on Sun 09 Dec 2012 17:24

I'm going to split off the discussion about T/ST variants into a separate thread. I think that this idea of T/ST variants is an important concept that has serious potential, and I don't want it dominating the rest of the oddities discussion.
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Re: Sysgen Oddities

Postby Crucis on Tue 08 Jan 2013 14:52

Ok, so I'm working on this stuff right now, and I'm wondering if the other sysgen knowledgeable people might give some input on a couple of things.

1. Mass 2 or 3 Type B planets in the Habitable Zone (not tidelocked). Do people think that these are really possible or should they be Type M "marginal" planets? My concern here is that we have planets that with sufficient gravity for habitability, and being in the HZ, the temperature is suitable for habitability. What would cause a mass 2 or 3 planet in the HZ to be classified as Type B? A lack of water? Other things? Is a mass 2 or 3 Type B planet in the HZ a legit, if rare, option?


2. Mass 2 or 3 Type M planets in the Outer Rocky Zone (not tidelocked). I read a wikipedia article on "extrastellar planets" (i.e. rogue planets) that suggested that an earth-sized rocky rogue planet that retained a sufficiently large moon might produce tidal effects capable of heating the planet to a moderate degree. That got me to thinking. If such a scenario was possible for a rogue planet, what if we were talking about a mass 2/3 Type B planet in the outer rocky zone? Such a planet might have significant amounts of water in a frozen state. But if such a planet had a sufficiently large moon to generate some tidal effects, might it be possible that this otherwise "Desolate" Type B planet might attain "Hostile" Type M status?

I know that the Ultra (and IIRC, Solar) oddity rules contain an oddity that causes a Desolate Type B planet to be transformed into a Hostile Type B. And it occurs to me that perhaps what I've described above might be the process by which that transformation occurs. Does this seem legit?
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Re: Sysgen Oddities

Postby AlexeiTimoshenko on Tue 08 Jan 2013 16:09

Crucis wrote:1. Mass 2 or 3 Type B planets in the Habitable Zone (not tidelocked). Do people think that these are really possible or should they be Type M "marginal" planets? My concern here is that we have planets that with sufficient gravity for habitability, and being in the HZ, the temperature is suitable for habitability. What would cause a mass 2 or 3 planet in the HZ to be classified as Type B? A lack of water? Other things? Is a mass 2 or 3 Type B planet in the HZ a legit, if rare, option?


If the temperature is suitable I don't see why there would that little water to make the world a type B. I would say atmospheric gasses would be a better explanation. Either a lack of free oxygen or CO2 levels to the point where the oceans have boiled off but not a hot as a Type V.

Crucis wrote:2. Mass 2 or 3 Type M planets in the Outer Rocky Zone (not tidelocked). I read a wikipedia article on "extrastellar planets" (i.e. rogue planets) that suggested that an earth-sized rocky rogue planet that retained a sufficiently large moon might produce tidal effects capable of heating the planet to a moderate degree. That got me to thinking. If such a scenario was possible for a rogue planet, what if we were talking about a mass 2/3 Type B planet in the outer rocky zone? Such a planet might have significant amounts of water in a frozen state. But if such a planet had a sufficiently large moon to generate some tidal effects, might it be possible that this otherwise "Desolate" Type B planet might attain "Hostile" Type M status?


I think that these would be like the glacial worlds discussed earlier. Think of Antarctica. Extremophile organisms survive there in conditions that are lethal to unprotected humans.
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Re: Sysgen Oddities

Postby Crucis on Tue 08 Jan 2013 16:35

AlexeiTimoshenko wrote:
Crucis wrote:1. Mass 2 or 3 Type B planets in the Habitable Zone (not tidelocked). Do people think that these are really possible or should they be Type M "marginal" planets? My concern here is that we have planets that with sufficient gravity for habitability, and being in the HZ, the temperature is suitable for habitability. What would cause a mass 2 or 3 planet in the HZ to be classified as Type B? A lack of water? Other things? Is a mass 2 or 3 Type B planet in the HZ a legit, if rare, option?


If the temperature is suitable I don't see why there would that little water to make the world a type B. I would say atmospheric gasses would be a better explanation. Either a lack of free oxygen or CO2 levels to the point where the oceans have boiled off but not a hot as a Type V.


Well, at one point in Earth's early history, there wasn't much of any free oxygen. It took a long time for various chemical and later biological processes to take hold and produce all the oxygen in the atmosphere. But also, who's to say that there was sufficient water on such a planet to allow for oceans in the first place?

I suppose that it really is a legit possibility for a mass 2 or 3 planet in the HZ to simply not have the conditions that allow it to be classified as Type M, let alone Type T or ST. Such a world would probably be rather dry and not have much of any O2 in the atmosphere (if there was one in the first place).

Of course, I suppose that it also sort of begs the question as to what is the tipping point that would separate a world from being merely a barren mass 2/3 planet (either H or B) vs. being a Type V planet... But that's probably more of a theoretical question...


Crucis wrote:2. Mass 2 or 3 Type M planets in the Outer Rocky Zone (not tidelocked). I read a wikipedia article on "extrastellar planets" (i.e. rogue planets) that suggested that an earth-sized rocky rogue planet that retained a sufficiently large moon might produce tidal effects capable of heating the planet to a moderate degree. That got me to thinking. If such a scenario was possible for a rogue planet, what if we were talking about a mass 2/3 Type B planet in the outer rocky zone? Such a planet might have significant amounts of water in a frozen state. But if such a planet had a sufficiently large moon to generate some tidal effects, might it be possible that this otherwise "Desolate" Type B planet might attain "Hostile" Type M status?


I think that these would be like the glacial worlds discussed earlier. Think of Antarctica. Extremophile organisms survive there in conditions that are lethal to unprotected humans.


Yes, though I was really asking if people thought that the scenario described seemed legit, rather than what such a world might be like.

I agree that it'd still be a cold world, for the most part, given its location. But with sufficient tidal forces due to planet-moon interaction, the planet's core may remain active and retain a magnetosphere, and hence its atmosphere. I'd imagine that whatever (relatively speaking) warmish regions existed would probably be near volcanic regions, perhaps with some underwater volcanic regions warming water sufficiently to allow for liquid water.

But yes, if such a world were classified as "marginal" (i.e. Type M), it wouldn't be suitable for unprotected people, but there might be some regions that were "hostile environments" rather than the normal "desolate" one would get with a m2/3 Type B planet.
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Re: Sysgen Oddities

Postby Crucis on Tue 08 Jan 2013 16:38

I'm working on extending the traditional planetary mass and type table to include some oddball situations.

When rolling on the standard planetary mass/type table, I'd carve out 5-10% to be reserved for oddball situations. If you initially got a result in that oddball range, you might either make another roll on a secondary table, or if I carved out about 10% for oddballs, the result might be able to be read right on the main table.

Any entry in the below tables would represent a relatively rare situation for the planetary zone. Don't worry about the die roll column. Right now, it's just there for looks. Any entry of "blank" indicates that I have nothing to put in that location at the moment, plus I'd probably just fill those blanks in with additional percentage points of other entries in the same column.



RollRocky Planet located in
1d10Inner Rocky ZoneTLZ+HZHabitable ZoneOuter Rocky Zone
1Empty OrbitEmpty OrbitEmpty OrbitEmpty Orbit
2Type aH Asteroid BeltType aH Asteroid BeltType aB Asteroid BeltType aB Asteroid Belt
3Mass 4 Type GMass 4 Type GMass 4 Type GMass 2 Type V
4Mass 5 Type GMass 5 Type GMass 5 Type GMass 3 Type V
5Mass 2 Type HMass 2 Type HMass 2 Type Bblank
6Mass 3 Type HMass 3 Type HMass 3 Type Bblank
7blankMass 2 Type VHGTblank
8blankMass 3 Type GDblankblank





RollPlanet located in
1d10Gas ZoneIce Zone
1Empty OrbitEmpty Orbit
2Type aB Asteroid BeltType aF Asteroid Belt
3Mass 1 Type BMass 1 Type F
4Mass 2 Type BMass 2 Type F
5Mass 3 Type BMass 3 Type F
6blankMass 5 Type I


NOTE 1: Any listing of "Empty Orbit" means that there's no planet in this orbit.

NOTE 2: I didn't include "Hot Jupiters" or "Hot Neptunes" in the Outer Rocky Zone because I get the impression that when gas giants migrate inward, they don't stop that far out. Frankly, I'm not that sure that they'd even stop their migration in the Habitable Zone, but I included that option regardless to allow for the possibility of habitable moons around gas giants in the HZ. The old "forest moon of Endor" sort of thing. ;)

Also, I didn't include the m2/3 Type B turned into a Type M planet due to a large-ish moon idea, because it required the presence of the moon, which isn't a part of this particular section of the sysgen process. I'll try to work it in elsewhere.

EDIT 1: Oh, and BTW, any suggestions for additional entries for the Outer Rocky Zone would be welcome. "Empty Orbit" and "Asteroid Belt" are just generic filler that I used in all zones. It'd be nice to have something a little more unique to the Outer Rocky Zone, if possible.

EDIT 2: Added Type V planets to the Outer Rocky Zone list.

EDIT 3: Replaced Mass 4 and 6 Type G planets in the Gas Zone list with Type B planets.
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Re: Sysgen Oddities

Postby AlexeiTimoshenko on Tue 08 Jan 2013 21:39

What about a dust belt? What I'm getting at is an area that has mineral wealth, but no rocks big enough to support a population.
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Re: Sysgen Oddities

Postby Crucis on Tue 08 Jan 2013 21:44

AlexeiTimoshenko wrote:What about a dust belt? What I'm getting at is an area that has mineral wealth, but no rocks big enough to support a population.


If the dust belt has mineral wealth, but no place for the miners to live, how do you suggest getting the benefit of that mineral wealth?
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