Campaign of the Month: June 2014
Battletech : The Farscape Campaign
System - Heroditus
Business Before Pleasure
Heroditus – Mercenary Hiring Hall in the Capellan Marches
Political Ruler : Gabriel Fur’ Seng-Geng, President of the Council of Herotitus Libertines
Star Type : G3IV (Desert) – (184 Hours)
Position in System : 2
Time to Jump Point : 8.52 days
Number of Satellites : 0
Surface Gravity : 0.98
Atmo Pressure : Standard (Breathable)
Avr Mean Temp : +36 (Warm-Temperate)
Surface Water : 72%
Recharge Station : Nadir
HPG Class Type : B, Precentor Maxwell Klanis
Highest Native Life : 20%, Reptiles
Socio-Industrial Level : C-D-B-D-B
Population : (3025) 240,000
Balancing Act : The Mercenary Trade on Heroditus
Herotitus : Heroditus lies athwart the trade routes of the Magistracy of Canopus and the Taurian Concordat. Prior to the Reunification War, both governments organized joint settlement there in a rare example of mutual development. Left largely to themselves, the inhabitants developed a stable agricultural community until philosophical dissidents from the Taurian Concordat arrived in 2997. These New Hedons conquered the planet, which quickly became a mirror image of Canopian pleasure planets. Though contested by the Magistracy, the Concordat, and the Capellan Confederation, the planet remains mostly untouched by the ravages of the Succession Wars. None wish to destroy one of the few remaining centers of pleasure left in the Periphery.
Known throughout the galaxy as a place to go to have fun; or to trade or meet with people when you don’t want anybody to know you are trading or meeting with them. The planet remains a neutral system where anyone can come for a good time, provided they have the money. Without touching the agrarian settlements, the New Hedons established a large “pleasure industry”, providing customers with physical and/or spiritual indulgence, to the point of excess. Taxation from the pleasure industry was reinvested to allow Heroditus to support increased traffic and demand. Concurrently, profits from export of foodstuffs have also remained lucrative. The planet maintains these two distinct industries in strict isolation, and has achieved economic success.
Having gone out of the way to avoid a significant military presence ever since its founding – despite brief periods of occupation by foreign neighbors – Heroditus as a center of trade and recreation has made it a natural draw for mercenaries and potential employers alike. Thanks to its central location between two large Periphery States and three Great Houses, its policy of openness to all visitors, and its liberal laws since the early part of the century, Herotitus has become a convenient way-station for travellers, traders and Periphery-based mercenaries. As a result, the world has begun a population boom in the last few years, though no formal polling system exists, leading to gross errors and a crippled planetary tax base.
New Hedon, the planetary capital, forms the informal center of this system’s unofficial mercenary trade, with hotels, casinos, conference centers, and even the local HPG station all possible venues for mercenaries and employer representatives to meet. The planetary starport, located in the heart of the city, is not equipped for military traffic, however. Thus, mercenaries with heavy equipment – including BattleMechs – must keep all such gear stowed during their stay in New Hedon and make use of the city’s high-priced local transportation.
In the suburbs of Myrmos, on the outskirts of New Hedon, there are some informal training centers available to military personnel and mercenaries, which rely on antiquated simulator pods. These facilities – colloquially dubbed “The Arcade” – form a core of an unofficial school and exposition center for professional soldiers, and it is often here that prospective employers gauge the talent of any locals. Occasional simulator duels are even fought in Myrmos, giving rise to a feeble secondary gambling and gaming economy tailored to combat aficionados. Additionally, many mercenary commanders are known to scope Mrymos and its Arcade for new recruits.
Close to half the mercenary trade conducted on Herotitus occurs in New Hedon and Myrmos, with the remainder taking place among the smaller cities scattered across the planet. Ironically, though no shortage of trained warriors pass through the starports of this planet, a large percentage of the mercs recruited here tend to be of the support roles in their new commands. Indeed recent studies by the MRB have shown the technical and medical specialists hired on Heroditus tend to be among the best in the industry.
Scattered in the distant jungles and northern wastes of the planet are a number of small, independent mining and farming communes. These communities are members of the planet’s Moot, and typically fulfill a need for the planetary industrial development, granting the cities a measure of independence from imports. Each is traditionally a small religious community living in some form of communal residency. Among them is The Colony of Little Heaven, which hired the Iron Dingoes for an anti-banditry contract against a band of mercs who had been harassing the colony for an unknown reason. Known as the “School of Hard Knocks” and the “Scrope Incident”, it had a lasting effect on the unit’s residency on the planet, and might have limited their ability to interact with government agencies and administration on the planet.