About this project
Welcome to the Great Rift, a mostly unexplored region of the Third Imperium universe close to the Spinward Marches and Trojan Reach!
This Kickstarter project is to create a brand new box set for the Traveller roleplaying game, detailing not only the sectors of the Great Rift but also providing a comprehensive guide to deep space exploration and the mysteries that can be found far from the shipping lanes.
You can download preview PDFs showing some of the content right here:
The Great Rift box set will contain:
- Two full colour, 96 page books covering Corridor, Reft, Riftspan Reaches and Touchstone sectors.
- Two gigantic (28" x 48") two-sided, full colour sector maps.
- The Deep Space Exploration Handbook, a 32 page book featuring all the rules needed to conduct deep space exploration, plus the specially designed ships needed to traverse the void.
Exploring the Great Rift
We have done 'sector books' in the past but, with the new edition of Traveller, we wanted to kick things up a notch. You will first see this in the forthcoming Pirates of Drinax campaign, which details the Trojan Reach, and we are bringing forward the same approach to the sectors of the Great Rift.
As well as the histories and worlds of the explored systems, each sector includes rules on its own unique vehicles, spacecraft, aliens, animals and diseases. While you read about the great agricultural-transfer ships that service the population of Oleiros, you will also see complete High Guard statistics and deck plans for them. As you discover the vicious meteor swarms of R'Bak, you will be provided with the rules to inflict them upon passing ships.
In a nutshell, you are not only getting four sectors in the Great Rift, you are also receiving everything needed to incorporate them into actual game play.
But that is not all.
The Great Rift provides us with an opportunity to turn away from civilised space and begin exploring the truly dark corners of the Third Imperium universe. This box set allows Travellers to tune their sensors to empty regions of space, identify anomalies of interest, and then begin huge multi-jump voyages to truly uncover the unknown.
This is where the Deep Space Exploration Handbook comes in.
We really like this book!
It begins by showing Travellers how to investigate an otherwise empty 'hex' on sector maps, by the use of sensors, scouring astronomical data, voyaging into deep space, and even listening to veteran spacers in the local starport. All this is taken into account when the Travellers attempt to find out what might lie then.
The Handbook then takes you on a journey through what may be found in the depths of space - anything from fully-fledged systems, proto-stars just forming, nebulae and, of course, black holes (and yes, we have rules for what happens to your ship in all these places!).
An expanded star creation system takes the referee through the process of generating brand new worlds, from the central star(s) to the furthest planetoids, complete with guidance on assigning orbital positions.
Finally, the book is rounded off with a selection of spacecraft dedicated to investigating the unknown and supporting deep space expeditions, including the Armstrong-class exploration vessel featured on the front of the box, a rugged and reasonably priced 1,000 ton ship that will be perfect for Travellers to begin their own expeditions.
Deeper and Deeper - Stretch Goals
We were always going to do a sourcebook for the Great Rift, as part of our mission to produce maps and background for every sector in the Third Imperium universe (a mission that may never be completed, but we are aiming for you to be able to plaster a very big wall with our new sector maps!). However, a Kickstarter allows us to push the boat out a little further, depending on you - and you responded magnificently!
Stretch Goal 1 - Passed!
We are already adding Great Rift Adventure 1: Islands in the Rift. The Travellers will arrive at Amondiage in the Old Islands subsector to recover a starship for their client. The job is easy; bring the ship to Zuflucht for transfer to Imperial space, but with the Islands on the brink of war and outsiders under suspicion, the task may not be a simple one after all.
Stretch Goal 2 - Passed!
There was no stopping you, and you broke the next stretch goal! We are now adding Great Rift Adventure 2: Deepnight Endeavour. In this adventure, the Travellers stumble upon a clue to the location of exploration ship Deepnight Endeavour, missing in the Great Rift for over a year. If they can improvise some way to cross several parsecs of deep space, they may be able to reach the stranded ship and rescue her survivors. But Deepnight Endeavour holds deadly secrets, and exploration of the wreck will become a desperate fight for survival.
We are planning for the Deepnight Endeavour to be a large ship, with deck plans featured on a new large poster map. We will also be adding a new sector to one of the books of the Great Rift box set, likely Afawahisa (reserving the right to change the sector, but we want to push further into the Rift).
Stretch Goal 3 - Passed!
You have asked for us to super-detail a system deep within the Great Rift, and that is exactly what we are going to do!
Martin has already sketched out the Phobetor system, discovered long ago by an ESA ship launched by an Anglo-American alliance in the 22nd Century, the Shackleton mission. The ship created a colony in the void of Touchstone sector, which persists to this day - but the Aslan know of a dark secret that has kept them far away from the system...
We will be adding this system to the Great Rift box set, giving your Travellers new worlds to explore and another hint of the mysteries that lie waiting to be discovered as they venture further into deep space, unlike anything they have yet seen in the Third Imperium.
Stretch Goal 4 - £95,000
For the final stretch goal of the Great Rift project, we will be adding Great Rift Adventure 3: Flatlined, a survival-horror adventure set in Reft that places the Travellers in a lonely outpost, filled with less-than-stable personalities, and surrounded by an alien menace. Will they last the night?
The Deep Space Explorer's Pack
We wanted to avoid a long and complex Kickstarter with multiple pledge levels - this Kickstarter is for the Great Rift box set and nothing else (though it may well grow in size with your help!). However, we also realise that some Travellers out there may not be completely equipped for deep space exploration of the Great Rift, and we would not want to send you off into the big black without adequate support!
Therefore, we are also offering backers the chance to pick up any of the current Traveller hardback rulebooks at a discounted rate of £30 each, with the PDF copy of the book thrown in! These include:
- The Traveller Core Rulebook
- High Guard
- Central Supply Catalogue
- Vehicle Handbook
Simply add £30 to your pledge for each title you are after, and we will take care of the rest. We'll get in contact with you after the Kickstarter is complete to see which titles you want, and will send them to you immediately (no waiting for the Great Rift, you will get them straight away).
As with the Great Rift box set itself, shipping is free worldwide.
IISS Senior Scout Pledge Level: Note that you can get all four hardbacks and the Great Rift box set with additional savings by pledging at IISS Senior Scout level!
Risks and challenges
Wait a minute, you ask, hasn't Mongoose always run late on its Kickstarter projects?
Well, yes, that is true. However, we have always delivered and if you were to ask one of our previous backers of, say, the new Paranoia, we believe you would also hear that the quality of our Kickstarter projects is always worth it.
That said, we have taken steps to ensure the Great Rift does not over run its projected completion date.
For a start, more than half the text is already written (the Deep Space Exploration and Reft books are complete) and work has already begun on the artwork - this is where the preview PDFs have been drawn from, and you will see more previews throughout the Kickstarter as we are working on the Great Rift right now.
Second, we have brought Traveller-writer Martin J Dougherty on board to pen the Great Rift. Not only is Mr Dougherty a regular fan-favourite among veteran Travellers, he is also a true professional and one of the most reliable writers Mongoose has ever worked with in our 16 years of business.
If Martin says a manuscript is going to be finished by a certain date, you can be sure you will see it by then, and he will be popping into the updates we will be doing throughout this Kickstarter to let you know just what he is working on and to gauge your opinion on previews.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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