So, we’ve had a couple of good episodes running over the past few months in our Battlestar Galactica campaign that have centered on the emerging politics of the fleet. Unlike the show, where the government just sort of materialized as if by magic, or fleet has been hampered by the logistics of moving people and goods between, essentially, 78 islands in space. There’s a black market that has fired up almost immediately. There’s hoarding and other problems just trying to get a handle on what they have in the way of resources, how many people they have (still an estimate, but a pretty good one), and how to motivate people to work where needed.

The fleet immediately went on half rations for the civilians not working, 2/3rds rations for those working in essential areas (military, bioship, repair ships, etc.) and they’ve been trying to recruit people for the Fleet and marines. Of course, with no place to really do physical training and no time for basic training type stuff, the newbies are being thrown straight into OJT. Pilot trainees are learning their OCS manuals while at the same time trying to learn basic flight. Enlisted are right into occupational training. The marines are about the only people they have the time to train with weapons.

They are also putting together a Marshal Service to police the fleet for violent crimes — murder, assault, rape, human slaving (which they’ve already run across), hunt Cylon infiltrators, and hoarding (although there’s a question as to where property rights end…can they just take people’s things? What does that do for motivation?)

One of the B plots is finding resources to replenish the fleet. A raptor went missing this week’s game (Halloween night) and two of the characters had to go on a search & rescue to find them. The raptor had been investigating a system with two giant water worlds, and they quickly found the raptor on the ocean’s surface, riding a mat of algae, and afloat but sinking slowly and in the path of a massive hurricane. They had maybe two hours to effect a rescue. The ship was not answering, so they head down and find the bird has it’s side hatch open. Why? The crew are not answering and there appears no one is aboard. Why not?

One of the characters is winched down under the hovering raptor and boards to find the craft dead. A quick search turned up the seat covers, rubber gaskets, pages from the manuals, etc. …all gone. The character managed to work out these were all organic components and that’s when her pilot realized that the algae mat was moving — crawling onto the raptor. There were a few tense moments where the pilot investigating barely got out of the craft before monster ate her, and some of the slop was eating through her flight suit boot. (She managed to get it off in time.)

The players had been expecting a Cylon plot, or some kind of maintenance issue, so the introduction of their first confirmed multi-cellular life form — and a vicious one at that — made for a sharp turn from the show’s universe. But it also played well into how to introduce a bit of the haunting holiday into an established game.