Ancient Trails - A Spacer's Guild Campaign Played via Virtual Tabletop
Valediction Freeport is an outsystem planetoid habitat in the Kressler Belt of Dorlass.
It’s been there a long time; in fact nobody is entirely sure how long. The installation
probably started out as a mining or ore-processing centre, or maybe a support
base for outsystem exploration and mining operations. The oreprocessing theory is the most likely, as the installation has a small processing plant of its own.
The Freeport’s existence is one of those open secrets whose existence
depends on your background. It is not on the astronav charts, other
than as yet another outsystem asteroid, and a significant segment
of the starfaring community know nothing about it. Particularly the
corporate spacers whose shiny vessels are a bit too good for places like
Valediction. However, the place is well known to independent spacers,
small tramp freighter crews, smugglers… and of course the navy.
Valediction Freeport is located on a large but otherwise
undistinguished asteroid. The port itself is on the surface, along
with some small industrial units, but most of the facilities are within
the rock. Habitation is concentrated at the port, though there are
a couple of small outposts which are not connected to the main
installation. There is little reason to land on the surface of the
asteroid, though there are several points where this is possible. The best appears to
be a large crater on the far side from the port itself,
but landing there would not be a good idea (as discussed further).
Valediction Freeport is one of those places that is a starport and not
much more. Revenue is generated by traffic rather than local industry,
at least for the most part, and thus the entire port is one large service
industry zone. The station owners take a cut of the proceeds on any
deal done in the port, as well as imposing a ‘business tax’ on any
commercial activity taking place. This is not a set amount and has
more to do with the perceptions of the collectors than any formal
assessment procedure – if you seem prosperous, you have to pay more.
There are five surface landing pads. The largest can take a 3000-ton ship,
while the others can accommodate vessels up to 600-tons. If you’re
really special (we’re not, though we did ask nicely) you can land on the retractable pad
and have your ship taken by lift into an underground bay that can accommodate
up to four ships of up to 600-tons. When the lift is returned to its top position, the
bay can be pressurised for maintenance work, though in practice it never is.
Ships requiring a shirtsleeve maintenance environment are moved to a single maintenance
bay off the main cavern/hangar… or more commonly told to find somewhere else to conduct repairs.
Passing through into the main concourse, the first thing the typical
visitor notices (note, we said ‘typical visitor’ and not ‘average
starfarer’) is that there are no weapon scanners nor any kind of
customs post. Valediction operates a somewhat different policy
towards weaponry than many other ports. Sidearms are considered
acceptable, and the point can be stretched to most weapons that
are carried in a holster, such as handgun-type submachineguns, but
larger weapons will attract the attention of the security force.
Security personnel at Valediction are well armed and not particularly
subtle. They are recruited from the ranks of former mercenaries,
soldiers and backstreet thugs, with no questions asked. Those that
fail to meet expectations have their contract terminated, one way or
another. Those that make the grade are expected to use intimidation
and violence as tools of their trade.