I’ve always been fascinated with Michael Brown’s Cepheus Engine setting Omega 99. It’s heavily based on the old ITV show Space 1999. Honestly, I didn’t think the original TV show was particularly good, but the fun 1970s style of it, and Brown’s very interesting gameable take on the source material continue to intrigue me. Here’s all the stuff I’ve made for the setting so far.
I’ve only run it as a one-shot so far, but I keep going back to the idea of doing more with it – and perhaps run a short campaign.
Here’s the stuff I’ve been thinking about:
- Mapping the worlds of the subsector
- Update the character sheet
- Metaplot – Why is the Moon here?
- What is the Mecharchy up to?
Map the Worlds
The original subsector map has 51 worlds (including Luna). About half are given UWPs and are claimed by the alien races. The rest are unclaimed and not described.
I’m think of filling in the unclaimed worlds with takes on all of the old 1970s TV sci-fi tropes. Futuristic tech that looks like a bunch of crystals, Room-sized AIs that speak in a rattling Colossus-style computer voice, lost Earth civilizations, etc.
Character Sheet Updates
I’m mostly happy with the Omega 99 character sheet I designed. (It even became sort of official). There are a few tweaks I want to make to it, including changing how the STR, DEX, and END health boxes are displayed. The unused boxes will be invisible instead of checked.
Why is the Moon here?
The basic plot of Omega 99 is that Earth’s moon has been transported to an alien sector of space after a FTL research station exploded on the Moon’s surface. No other explanation is given for the Moon’s journey.
It may not be necessary to have a answer to how or why this happened to run a campaign, but I thought I’d come up with a few scenarios just in case:
- A powerful alien civilization (possibly the Mecharchy) saw that Humanity was not yet ready for the power of FTL technology and removed the Moon from it’s original location to quarantine it. This suggests the Earth is still out there somewhere.
- The Moon didn’t travel through space – it traveled through time. All of the surrounding worlds are the remnants of a long gone human interstellar empire. The Edari and Kahgg are former uplifted animal servants. The Mecharcy is what’s left of our robot civilization.
- The Omegans have been summoned here by aliens for a purpose. They’re here to prevent a Kahgg/Edari war, stop (or possibly save) the Mecharchy, or something even grander. Only the innate special-ness of Humanity can save the day.
- Humanity is being judged by a powerful alien intelligence (Q-Continuum style). How they react to their new environment will determine Humanity’s fate.
- It really was just a fuck-up by the FTL scientists. If their research can be replicated, perhaps the Moon can be returned.
What is the Mecharchy up to?
Three alien species are referenced in Omega 99. The Kahgg and the Edari are described, but the Mecharchy are deliberately left mysterious. Here’s a few ideas I’ve been playing with:
- They’re an expanding threat – like the Borg, Daleks, or the Mechanoids
- They’re just curious about organics and want to know more.
- They’re a race of servant machines, having lost their original masters, and are looking for a new organic species worthy to command them.
- They’re the descendants of Earth’s machines, and summoned the Omegans from the past to know their creators (They’ve gone full V’ger)
- The rarely seen organic Mecharchs are dying, and are looking for new species to maintain their civilization.