What are y'all up to these days?

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3rik

(ᵕ̣̣̣̣̣̣﹏ᵕ̣̣̣̣̣̣) R.I.P. Hana Kimura (1997 - 2020)
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Last saturday we had another session of Masks of Nyarlathotep. Our characters went to
Lesser Edale to check out the Killer Beast rumors
and so far we've been doing quite well. We'll probably finish
the Edale subplot
next Friday. That will be our last session before our GM/Keeper, who is a sailor, is off to sea again for four months.

If I can get myself to do some proper prep work I may try and run either Shadow of the Demon Lord or Infected! for the other two players while he's gone. That's a big IF, though...
 

Agemegos

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Tonight — in ten hours from posting — I will conduct the party-and-character generation session for a new Flat Black campaign that I am going to run by way of Discord, with and old gaming chum and two new recruits from the AUS RPG discord server. The pitch was as follows:

Campaign : It Belongs In A Museum
System : ForeSight
Setting : Flat Black
Genres : low-concept SF; planetary adventure; thrillers, hard-boiled mysteries, capers
Inspiration : Mission Impossible , Burn Notice , SF works of Jack Vance

Platform : Discord voice and chat
Schedule : Saturday nights 20:00–23:30 AET
Commencement : late January 2022
Players : 3–4

Premise

The PCs comprise a small team of versatile and highly competent “effectives” who perform secret operations for an interstellar NGO on the “planet of the month”.

Human Heritage is an interstellar non-government organisation that is dedicated to recording and conserving cultural treasures, and protecting artists and their freedom of expression. Human Heritage has supporters and members on most planets. But these are seldom skilled enough to do anything difficult, resolute enough to do anything strenuous or dangerous, or bold enough to confront opposition. HH therefore employs skilled and daring “effectives” as undercover and clandestine operators. Rarely of a military character, their missions usually involve finding missing artists, rescuing captives, finding and recovering stolen art, interdicting the trade in stolen art, and preventing major acts of vandalism—by whatever means necessary. But if you get caught, the Conservator will deny any knowledge of your mission.

Flat Black is a setting for adventures in which more-or-less cosmopolitan PCs come with an objective to an exotic planet with a bizarre culture and society. The peculiarities of the planet are an obstacle while they are not understood, but PCs can figure out how to adapt to, circumvent, and even take advantage of them.
I’m using first edition ForeSight with only the essential minimum of simplifications to character generation, for the sake of having something definite that the players can rely upon. Its problems are survivable.
 
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Certified

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The Art of the Team Up: Assisting Others
This week, we're exploring how heroes can work together to accomplish more difficult actions. What it takes to work together, and how that can impact the narrative and interactions at the game table.
 

Agemegos

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Tonight — in ten hours from posting — I will conduct the party-and-character generation session for a new Flat Black campaign that I am going to run
Okay, so that went well enough. Now I have to come up with a kick-arse kick-off.

I need an outrageously bizarre culture, of course. And the PCs ought to stumble into a larger-than-life criminal scheme. I’m feeling like a few pot-shots at denialism and the populist myth of decadence, so we might have some shenanigans at a museum over evidence of the past.
 
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Alohan

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I have been running my weekly Conan 2d20 campaign for longer than a year now.

Other than that I’ve been running a much shorter Conan 2d20 campaign for a friend of mine who normally only plays or runs D&D and VtM. He seems to like it a lot so that’s going well.

Also one of the players from my long campaign wanted to try her hand at GMing so she is running a Conan 2d20 campaign for me and she is learning it pretty fast.
 

Stan

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I have been running my weekly Conan 2d20 campaign for longer than a year now.

Other than that I’ve been running a much shorter Conan 2d20 campaign for a friend of mine who normally only plays or runs D&D and VtM. He seems to like it a lot so that’s going well.

Also one of the players from my long campaign wanted to try her hand at GMing so she is running a Conan 2d20 campaign for me and she is learning it pretty fast.

That's a lot of loincloths.

Welcome aboard!
 

Bill Reich

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We just finished a cross-country campaign in the Westwood setting and I turned the last part of it into a module in record time. It is available at
https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/383877/Deepwood-Vale?src=newest

The first part of the campaign was travel with incidents generated randomly by using

I have been doing OSR/D20 versions of these adventures but the GM for my playtesting group is going to have a baby. If anyone wants to playtest a D20 version, I will have one ready in a few days.
 

JamesV

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Last Saturday, I got the gang together for the first time since summer 2019. We didn't game, I just cooked a huge meal and we chatted, but my batteries are recharged and my plan is to get is together once a month.
 

E-Rocker

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Last week, my Savage Worlds group had the second session with one of my players acting as Special Guest GM. He's got one more to do, and then I'm back in the saddle. It's been really nice to have a break from running the universe, and actually getting to play a Savage Worlds PC for once!

My player had only planned to run one session. He didn't ask me for any advice, which was fine. I was totally on board with him doing it his way & learning through trial by fire. But if he had asked, I would have said, "expect everything to take 2-to-4 times longer than you planned on." Thus his one-session adventure is taking three sessions. Which, again, I'm totally fine with, as it means a longer break for me.
 

Caesar Slaad

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I kicked off 2 campaigns this last week. Urban fantasy is in season.

My Monday/Wednesday group (with my daughters and their room mates) started playing Swords of the Serpentine (a Sword & Sorcery Gumshoe game... sounds weird, but it works), as employees and owners of an antiquities book shop will to go to extremes to retrieve the rarest of books.


My Saturday group just started a Planescape game using Pathfinder 1e (after a long debate over what I was going to use to run it, I settled on Pathfinder because I have the most material to support whatever I need). I started them using the old adventure The Eternal Boundary, but my long term goal is to run Dead Gods. By fortunate coincidence, WotC just put out a cleaned up version of the PDF for Dead Gods.
 
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3rik

(ᵕ̣̣̣̣̣̣﹏ᵕ̣̣̣̣̣̣) R.I.P. Hana Kimura (1997 - 2020)
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Our GM tested positive so our game tomorrow is canceled. He's not feeling too bad, sounded like a mild flu. This also means he won't be sailing anytime soon, so hopefully we'll be able to have one more session before he leaves.
 

Nobby-W

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Coming up on the end of a D&D campaign that's been going for nearly 3 years - the longest I've ever played in. The DM is also moving across the country to Devon in April, so that may be the end of an era.
 

Nobby-W

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On the plus side, the folks have expressed some interest in playing Scum and Villainly, so I think I will recycle the elgins statues adventure for the IRL group. Not sure what to do about repopulating it after the DM goes; we will need another one or two people.
 

Nobby-W

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AsenRG

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Last week, my Savage Worlds group had the second session with one of my players acting as Special Guest GM. He's got one more to do, and then I'm back in the saddle. It's been really nice to have a break from running the universe, and actually getting to play a Savage Worlds PC for once!

My player had only planned to run one session. He didn't ask me for any advice, which was fine. I was totally on board with him doing it his way & learning through trial by fire. But if he had asked, I would have said, "expect everything to take 2-to-4 times longer than you planned on." Thus his one-session adventure is taking three sessions. Which, again, I'm totally fine with, as it means a longer break for me.
Yay for getting to play:thumbsup:!
 

Lundgren

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So... Still playing in the D&D5 group. We are trying to play twice a week, but at least our average is over once a week.

The Traveller game I was planning back then is up and running, and we are playing every second week. I'm running a modified Third Imperium setting, where I'm using the map, but only uses the lore as inspiration at best. I've also tossed out Psionics, so the Zhodian Consulate are a high surveillance state through technology instead.

One player ended up with 100% ownership of a lab ship from start, but as the character is an archeologist, she got a Free Trader instead (why I was working on my own floor plans a year ago) as a mobile field laboratory. That character is also now the ships medic, but she probably hasn't been working on anything that haven't been dead for hundreds of years since her residency before becoming an MD.

Another character is the son of the Noble that funded the expedition they were on. The father died, which not only meant the expedition's funds dried up, but his half-brother is now the new ruler, and it is quite possible the half-brother and step-mother are sending assassins after him. While have served in the Navy, he spent most of that time behind a desk, shuffling documents.

The third character is played by the only player that haven't seen the Expanse, and he have pretty much ended playing Amos. A war veteran with a checkered past. He was the expeditions chief of security, and as he didn't really had anywhere else to go, he remained as someone had to keep those tenderfeet alive.

I made a 3D model around the floorplans I made, and found a plugin to Blender so I could 3D-print it. That's how I found out my "Free Trader" is 290Td (oops :shock: ). Well, I found that out after the first or the second gaming session, so a minor retcon, and it became a 290Td Trader that's designed to use almost all facilities Free Traders and Scouts can use. Considering we already had established it was of unknown origin, where the documents show it was refurbished about 80 years ago, it actually fitted my plans for it even better. Two sessions ago, when they found out the hull is not only six time thicker than necessary, but the material it seems to be built of is just a thin coating over some other material, they began checking up more stuff about their ship. That's how they found out about 70Td unaccounted for, and began to scan it, finding a lot of empty space, but also something large and massive. Last session, they began cutting holes in it, founding some very old and deteriorated fuel tanks, and something that seems to be a huge heat sink inside a layer of "aerogel".

A 3D print of the ship is flying around with, in the same scale as the Beowulf from 2nd Dynasty next to it.

Traveller Game ship next to Beowulf_resize.jpg

Then, I've also been running an FFG Star Wars Game with two cousins, but thanks to some illness, covid restrictions, and bad timing, we haven't been able to play for a few months now (we've only been running the game face-to-face).

I've never used the FFG system before, but as one of the cousins wanted to try it out, it seemed a good opportunity to give it a test drive. The other request was that they will end up with the rebellion against the empire. The game is taking place three years before the battle of Yavin (so, concurrent with the Rebels show), and they are from a distant mining colony that's Empire friendly (They were under Separatist occupation, and after the war they suffered under pirates until the Empire drove the pirates off). So both characters signed up for the Imperial forces, but as they found out the Empire wasn't what they thought it were. So after their term of service was up, they both decided to not renew their contracts.

One of them is a former Scout trooper, and the other is a former Shuttle (second-) pilot and is a decent mechanic.

We created their home planet together, and pretty much based it on Kiruna (a mining town in Northern Sweden). As Kiruna is about to be moved (yup, their planning to move the entire town), the town in the game has been moved. So while their were teenagers, they used go take their "speeder mopeds" and go to the old ruin town, hang out with friends and drink beer. There's also an old battlefield where the town used to scavenge droid parts, but the new administration change it to something that requires a license.

While trying to come up with a name, I mangled Kiruna a bit and ended up with Peruuna. Googling it, just in case, I found out that Peruna means potato in Finnish, and one of the players in half-Finn. So when I mentioned it to them, he mentioned pretty much "yeah, that won't work for me." However, after bouncing around some other ideas, someone of us came up with the idea that Peruuna could be a potato-like root vegetable in the Star Wars universe, and pretty much the only thing that can be grown on the planet. So the planet got it's name from the root vegetable, which all of us ended up liking. After deciding that the main cattle on Peruuna is Nerfs, both decided they wanted to have grown up on farms where their families have grown Peruuna roots and being Nerf herders.

The closest major system to Peruuna was decided to be Ry'loth, and Twi'leks are the largest non-human population (about 10%).

I also nabbed the "relation system" from Noir, so they were to spend 10 points on 3 persons each. The points are spent on the persons opinion, and their resources. That's to make both friends and foes. I added a few more. So we have the mayor, that is creating grief for the farmers. The mayor is the nephew of a business woman that is believed to be a mob boss, and has the nick name "the Banker." We have a scrap dealer that both of them have sold stuff they illegally have acquired from the old battle field. A pub owner in the rough part of town, that most likely work for the Banker (the former scout trooper put into he had recently done a job for him, taking a package from outside the town to the pub, that he botched when he was ambushed by a larger well armed group). They also know a young fixer, which one of the players created with the above mentioned points, that's--while not planned that way--ended up pretty much to be a human version of Mission Veo. There's also a smuggling ring working out from the docs, the local security forces, a small Imperial presence, and a few other details we established before play.

So far, they have managed to retrieve the package that was dropped while outrunning the mercenary gang that ambushed him, under the nose of the same gang that also were out looking for it. Besides the mercs, some of the pub owner's goons were also out looking (which could mean ending up under his thumb, if they found it first). The only direct firefight so far in the game was the PCs taking cover next the the found package, as four mercs also looked in that area. They set their weapons on stun and blasted away. They dropped two instantly, and one of the mercs failed miserably, so I had him drop the weapon. As they failed to take him out in the next round, but got the a lot of advantage, the player let the poor fellow being a real butter finger and yet again dropping the gun he just had managed to pick up.

The Mercs and the pub owner's goons took some losses, as they stumbled into each other, ending out in a firefight.

The day after having delivered it to the pub owner, a kid on the street came up to him and handed him a com-link, claiming he dropped it. He was contacted by someone using a voice distorter, and was informed that unless he wanted them to assume he had tried to steal the package himself, he had to track down whom being behind the ambush.

After some detective work, they managed to find out what ship the Mercs had been using, and that they had gone to Mos Eisley (public transports, as they don't have their own ship). Splitting up, trying to find the Mercs or their ships, I make a percentage roll for if they run into them. I had the 01 mean that one of them walks right into butter-finger. While rolling for if he recognize the PC, the result is pretty much "yes, but..." Both pull their guns, and having a stand-off. The attempt to convince butter-finger is mistaken isn't entirely successful, but his buddy that comes running completely fails to recognize the PC. So he manage to convince the other guy, and they both manage to talk down butter-finger. Being invited to a beer at a cantina nearby, as a "sorry for the misunderstanding," he mention he and a friend is looking for work and the mercs agrees to introduce them to their boss. The session ended with them managed to talk their way into being employed into the merc unit on probation.
 

Nobby-W

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So... Still playing in the D&D5 group. We are trying to play twice a week, but at least our average is over once a week.

The Traveller game I was planning back then is up and running, and we are playing every second week. I'm running a modified Third Imperium setting, where I'm using the map, but only uses the lore as inspiration at best. I've also tossed out Psionics, so the Zhodian Consulate are a high surveillance state through technology instead.

One player ended up with 100% ownership of a lab ship from start, but as the character is an archeologist, she got a Free Trader instead (why I was working on my own floor plans a year ago) as a mobile field laboratory. That character is also now the ships medic, but she probably hasn't been working on anything that haven't been dead for hundreds of years since her residency before becoming an MD.

Another character is the son of the Noble that funded the expedition they were on. The father died, which not only meant the expedition's funds dried up, but his half-brother is now the new ruler, and it is quite possible the half-brother and step-mother are sending assassins after him. While have served in the Navy, he spent most of that time behind a desk, shuffling documents.

The third character is played by the only player that haven't seen the Expanse, and he have pretty much ended playing Amos. A war veteran with a checkered past. He was the expeditions chief of security, and as he didn't really had anywhere else to go, he remained as someone had to keep those tenderfeet alive.

I made a 3D model around the floorplans I made, and found a plugin to Blender so I could 3D-print it. That's how I found out my "Free Trader" is 290Td (oops :shock: ). Well, I found that out after the first or the second gaming session, so a minor retcon, and it became a 290Td Trader that's designed to use almost all facilities Free Traders and Scouts can use. Considering we already had established it was of unknown origin, where the documents show it was refurbished about 80 years ago, it actually fitted my plans for it even better. Two sessions ago, when they found out the hull is not only six time thicker than necessary, but the material it seems to be built of is just a thin coating over some other material, they began checking up more stuff about their ship. That's how they found out about 70Td unaccounted for, and began to scan it, finding a lot of empty space, but also something large and massive. Last session, they began cutting holes in it, founding some very old and deteriorated fuel tanks, and something that seems to be a huge heat sink inside a layer of "aerogel".

A 3D print of the ship is flying around with, in the same scale as the Beowulf from 2nd Dynasty next to it.

View attachment 40998

Then, I've also been running an FFG Star Wars Game with two cousins, but thanks to some illness, covid restrictions, and bad timing, we haven't been able to play for a few months now (we've only been running the game face-to-face).

I've never used the FFG system before, but as one of the cousins wanted to try it out, it seemed a good opportunity to give it a test drive. The other request was that they will end up with the rebellion against the empire. The game is taking place three years before the battle of Yavin (so, concurrent with the Rebels show), and they are from a distant mining colony that's Empire friendly (They were under Separatist occupation, and after the war they suffered under pirates until the Empire drove the pirates off). So both characters signed up for the Imperial forces, but as they found out the Empire wasn't what they thought it were. So after their term of service was up, they both decided to not renew their contracts.

One of them is a former Scout trooper, and the other is a former Shuttle (second-) pilot and is a decent mechanic.

We created their home planet together, and pretty much based it on Kiruna (a mining town in Northern Sweden). As Kiruna is about to be moved (yup, their planning to move the entire town), the town in the game has been moved. So while their were teenagers, they used go take their "speeder mopeds" and go to the old ruin town, hang out with friends and drink beer. There's also an old battlefield where the town used to scavenge droid parts, but the new administration change it to something that requires a license.

While trying to come up with a name, I mangled Kiruna a bit and ended up with Peruuna. Googling it, just in case, I found out that Peruna means potato in Finnish, and one of the players in half-Finn. So when I mentioned it to them, he mentioned pretty much "yeah, that won't work for me." However, after bouncing around some other ideas, someone of us came up with the idea that Peruuna could be a potato-like root vegetable in the Star Wars universe, and pretty much the only thing that can be grown on the planet. So the planet got it's name from the root vegetable, which all of us ended up liking. After deciding that the main cattle on Peruuna is Nerfs, both decided they wanted to have grown up on farms where their families have grown Peruuna roots and being Nerf herders.

The closest major system to Peruuna was decided to be Ry'loth, and Twi'leks are the largest non-human population (about 10%).

I also nabbed the "relation system" from Noir, so they were to spend 10 points on 3 persons each. The points are spent on the persons opinion, and their resources. That's to make both friends and foes. I added a few more. So we have the mayor, that is creating grief for the farmers. The mayor is the nephew of a business woman that is believed to be a mob boss, and has the nick name "the Banker." We have a scrap dealer that both of them have sold stuff they illegally have acquired from the old battle field. A pub owner in the rough part of town, that most likely work for the Banker (the former scout trooper put into he had recently done a job for him, taking a package from outside the town to the pub, that he botched when he was ambushed by a larger well armed group). They also know a young fixer, which one of the players created with the above mentioned points, that's--while not planned that way--ended up pretty much to be a human version of Mission Veo. There's also a smuggling ring working out from the docs, the local security forces, a small Imperial presence, and a few other details we established before play.

So far, they have managed to retrieve the package that was dropped while outrunning the mercenary gang that ambushed him, under the nose of the same gang that also were out looking for it. Besides the mercs, some of the pub owner's goons were also out looking (which could mean ending up under his thumb, if they found it first). The only direct firefight so far in the game was the PCs taking cover next the the found package, as four mercs also looked in that area. They set their weapons on stun and blasted away. They dropped two instantly, and one of the mercs failed miserably, so I had him drop the weapon. As they failed to take him out in the next round, but got the a lot of advantage, the player let the poor fellow being a real butter finger and yet again dropping the gun he just had managed to pick up.

The Mercs and the pub owner's goons took some losses, as they stumbled into each other, ending out in a firefight.

The day after having delivered it to the pub owner, a kid on the street came up to him and handed him a com-link, claiming he dropped it. He was contacted by someone using a voice distorter, and was informed that unless he wanted them to assume he had tried to steal the package himself, he had to track down whom being behind the ambush.

After some detective work, they managed to find out what ship the Mercs had been using, and that they had gone to Mos Eisley (public transports, as they don't have their own ship). Splitting up, trying to find the Mercs or their ships, I make a percentage roll for if they run into them. I had the 01 mean that one of them walks right into butter-finger. While rolling for if he recognize the PC, the result is pretty much "yes, but..." Both pull their guns, and having a stand-off. The attempt to convince butter-finger is mistaken isn't entirely successful, but his buddy that comes running completely fails to recognize the PC. So he manage to convince the other guy, and they both manage to talk down butter-finger. Being invited to a beer at a cantina nearby, as a "sorry for the misunderstanding," he mention he and a friend is looking for work and the mercs agrees to introduce them to their boss. The session ended with them managed to talk their way into being employed into the merc unit on probation.

This is a post I wrote on another site in answer to a question about a campaign based on a lab ship.

Set up a charter business, acting as a mobile base for remote scientific expeditions on the fringes of Imperial space. You're the pilot, ship crew and the muscle. What could possibly go wrong ... ?
  • Any one of the innumerable variants on 'The specimen gets loose.' See Alien.
  • Pirates show up and try to take your spaceship.
  • Someone tries to nick the research.
  • You get into race for the prize (hidden temple or some such) with your patron's arch-rival, who will stop at nothing to get there first. Shenanigans ensue. See Raiders of the Lost Ark.
  • You encounter a derelict spaceship. There may or may not be somebody on board in cold sleep. There may or may not be something dangerous in the cargo. This may or may not be wanted by various third parties, who will stop at nothing to get it and eliminate anybody else who knows anything about it to hide their tracks.
  • You land the pinnace and find the ruins of an ancient civilisation, only it's still working. See DA1: Shadows, A3: Twilight's Peak.
  • The party on-planet in the pinnace loses contact with the mother ship. When you get back it turns out that something being prepared in the labs got out and into the air conditioning, turning everyone onboard into crazed zombies. See DA3: Death Station.
  • You set up camp on the planet, and have some trouble with the local wildlife, especially the Greater Spotted ATV Eater. See Dune. See also: Growing on Me.
  • You set up camp on the planet, and have some trouble with the natives/bandits/rebels.
  • First Contact. Oh, shit! what do we do now?. See A10: Safari ship.
  • The scientist chartering your ship finds evidence of some lost civilisation on the planet he's investigating, with references to something on a nearby world just outside Imperial space. Time to boldly go where no sophont has gone before (at least not recently). See Drak'ne Station.
  • Murder mystery - whodunnit. The chief scientist chartering your ship is also a local noble and tries to pin it on the crew. See A11: Murder on Arcturus station.
  • Your patron captures a xenomorph and wants you to help him smuggle it back past imperial authorities. What could possibly go wrong?
  • Your patron is Walter White and has found a way to synthesize vast amounts of illicit narcotic substances outside imperial jurisdiction. Now he wants you to help him smuggle it back past Imperial Authorities. You realise that if you get caught the Imperials will assume you're in on it.
  • Exploratory trade and research work looking for new markets and new botanical specimens to process into saleable pharmaceuticals. See A4: Leviathan.
  • A war starts up on the planet you're doing the research on. The patron has spent years wheedling for his grant and knows he'll never get another one. He insists on staying.
  • The patron is using the research expedition as a cover for espionage operations. You're on planet when the Gestapo turn up ...
  • You land the pinnace in the desert and set up camp and retire to bed. That night there's a flash flood that half buries the pinnace in gunge and debris, which will take days to clear out and need some specialised equipment. You need to drive some distance to an old scout way station and see if their emergency supply cache is still intact. The local wildlife also come out to play at night. See Pitch Black.
  • Some escaped prisoners or other riffraff hijack the pinnace when you've landed it on-planet. Now you've got to get it back somehow.
  • All the vegetation and life on land has been stripped bare, but there are still some signs of a previous civilisation and the oceans are teeming with life. You pick up a faint radio beacon. See DA5: The Chamax Plague.
  • All of the wildlife on the planet is hostile to you, in eerily coordinated ways. See Deathworld 1. See also: Drop Bears. See also Australia.
  • Your patron captures several breeding pairs of tribbles. Unfortunately they don't capture any examples of their natural predator ...
  • It turns out that your patron has failed to properly licence their research/failed to bribe the right official. The local department of antiquities turns up and impounds the ship. To get it out you need to pay a fine of Cr3 million. However, the head of the department of antiquities has a little problem that perhaps you can help him with ...
  • Your party is outside imperial space and encounters the last remains of a group of exiles marooned on the world you are exploring, who attempt to hijack your ship. Their leader may or may not be named Khan.
One could also do some combination of the above. For example, try combining Tribbles with one of the other adventure hooks. Feel free to show this to your D.M. if you want to suggest plot hooks.
 

Lundgren

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This is a post I wrote on another site in answer to a question about a campaign based on a lab ship.

Set up a charter business, acting as a mobile base for remote scientific expeditions on the fringes of Imperial space. You're the pilot, ship crew and the muscle. What could possibly go wrong ... ?

One could also do some combination of the above. For example, try combining Tribbles with one of the other adventure hooks. Feel free to show this to your D.M. if you want to suggest plot hooks.
Some of those might come in handy. :thumbsup:

However, they don't have lab ship, but a trader with an archeology laboratory instead of a lot of cryo chambers, so it isn't as useful to other scientists. In the cargo hold, they have several pressurable tents, an excavator, and other stuff to set up a camp where they land.

They have their own mission at the moment, as the expedition was to track down if some tablets various cultures have had in religious, or otherwise traditions, might have a much older origin in common. Continuing their search will require other funds, and the certain database searches will take months (several weeks to get the query to the correct database, a few minutes or hours, and then several weeks for the answer to get back to them).

They also want to upgrade the ship. The cabins on the upper deck have four bunks each, and only suitable for what MgT2 calls basic passenger. They might also want to increase the jump distance, and other systems

However, they are in the Trojan Reach, a place infested by pirates and slavers, not to mention local wars and nasty politics.
 
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