Campaign of the Month: June 2014
Battletech : The Farscape Campaign
LosTech of the Star League
Jumpkeys are small metal cylinders that contain the technical data for making jumps using a JumpShip or WarShip. They traditionally have coded markings denoting their target routes. The key holds a code that when transmitted to a navigational computer, granting a secure means to make a jump without anyone actually knowing the code required, and keeping its destination secret. Not all ships in a fleet need a key, as long as they have jump engines tied to a navigational computer, and can transmit the data to each other.
Jumpkeys are made through a LosTech method of a ceramic alloy, and are the exclusive technology of the obscure spacer guild, The Charioteers. They are often tinted green to identify them from other technical hardware. It is rumored that “purple” keys can be found that allow access to secure or highly secret locations, such as Star League supply bases, but as with any of these sorts of keys, one must first know the general location of the target system before activating them, and be within one jump of the target, or the key will simply not work. Some keys are even believed to be traps set for the unwary, sent out among spacers to doom those too inquisitive of Charioteer secrets.
Although the Charioteers hold the monopoly on new keys, there are enough inherited relic keys and general knowledge around to keep House and independent fleets moving without their involvement. Trips off standard routes, however, are rare without Jumpkeys. Keys are a highly valued price for pirates and navies after a battle.