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Fluff - The Galactic Spaceport!

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Hello fellow roleplayers of the Progenitor Server!

For this next installment of the Fluff Guides, I am going to present material that pertains a Galactic Spaceport.

Disclaimer
As always, I would like to remind that the aim of this thread is not to dictate how RP “should” happen, but instead to offer insight on how a series of gaming accessories with a large amount of material, treated the chosen subject. This kind of information can help players that may want to include in their RP a specific scene or some flavor, by providing information and simple formulas that were used by the West End tabletop RPG series to explain the subject of choice and generally make the Galaxy a larger, fleshed out, more realistic place to live in.

For ease of reading, the material will be broken down in parts (if required) and heavy use of spoiler tags will be utilized to keep the text as comfortably formatted as possible.

Spoiler: Canon ReferencesShow

Sources
The material in this thread can be found and has been adapted from the following books, in no particular order:

Galaxy Guide 06: Tramp Freighters [isbn: 0874312124]
Platt’s Smuggler’s Guide [isbn: 0874315085]
Platt’s Starport Guide [isbn: 0874312248]

Contents

1. The Spaceport
2. Mundane Spaceport costs and fees
3. Starship Repairs
4. Arrival, Departure and METOSP

1. The Spaceport
Spoiler: Starports, Spaceports, Starships, SpaceshipsShow

Most planets in the civilized Galaxy have at least one spaceport. Spaceports vary considerably in equipment and capabilities, as well as the price level of the goods and services available. The Republic Space Ministry has developed five different classifications for Spaceports.

Landing Field

A landing field is basically a flat, level area cleared on the ground. Generally, these fields are little more than cheap synthecrete or tightly packed dirt. There is no flight control tower, so ships landing run a risk of colliding with departing vessels. There is no guarantee that there are any refuelling or repair services available, and the few services that exist will be of low quality (though they will probably be fairly affordable)

Limited Services

Limited Services starports usually have a small control tower with a homing beacon that helps guide incoming ships to the proper landing area. With luck, there are maintenance sheds for rent, where primitive repairs can be assayed by the ship’s crew. This type of port has limited storage and parking capacity, and in many cases, ships must land nearby and crews must walk to the port if all parking spots are occupied. All major supplies must be purchased elsewhere.

Standard Class

The Standard Class spaceport has a fully staffed and equipped flight control tower, and ooffers restocking services and a small shipyard capable of minor repairs and modifications. Modification and repairs can cost up to double normal price and take more than twice as normal long to accomplish, though the quality of the work is fairly good.

Stellar Class

The Stellar Class spaceport has facilities for landing and docking nearly any type and class of vessel. There are usually a number of different shipyards surrounding the port, which are capable of performing nearly any sort of ship repair and customizing that the owners wish (and can afford). There is nearly always a Customs Office (Republic or Imperial) on site. Quality of repairs and modifications are often of advanced quality and are moderately affordable.
[poster’s note: in my opinion, it’s best to land in stellar or standard class ports. anything less should be avoided, unless you’re running from someone and want to hide. and the republic/imperial class may be too much of a hassle, if you -have- something to hide.]

Republic or Imperial Class

The Republic Class - and its counterpart, the Imperial Class - port is quite luxurious and modern. It has an impressive array of landing fields and ship storage and maintenance facilities. All the most lavish amenities are available for ships’ crew and passengers. Many of the planet’s merchants may maintain offices at the port, and it may not be necessary for the Ship’s captains to even leave the port to conduct their business.

The shipyards are capable of rapid and high-quality repairs and modifications, though the services may not come cheap. The Customs office for this quality of port is probably staffed by highly competent officers, equipped with portable scanners. Both the Empire and the Republic usually maintains a formidable military presence - especially now with the galaxy at war - in this class of Starports and minor infractions are dealt with, to the full extent of the law; troublemakers are unwelcome at this class of spaceports.
Kraethas Nova
Crimson Falcon Courier Service
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
If you like my writing style, check out the following guides:
Drinks | Tramp Freighter Trading | The Galactic Spaceport | Space travel and regulations
Posted Sep 11, 17 · OP · Last edited Sep 11, 17
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2. Mundane Spaceport Costs

Docking Fees

The Docking Fee is a fixed amount of credits, varying by Starport, Planet and Class, to be paid upon landing and for each day that a Starship occupies a landing slot in the port. Note, at this point that a "day" is not necessarily a standard galactic day (24 hours) but a standard galactic Calendar day. If your ship occupies a spot on a spaceport at the first second of a new day, then it must pay the docking fee for the entire day. Most spaceports of Standard Class charge around 50 credits per day. A particularly busy Imperial Class starport might charge up to 150 credits a day - just to keep a ship docked!

A good rule of thumb for docking fees is:

Landing Field: 0 - 10 credits per day (depending on whether there’s anyone overseeing the field)
Limited Services: 25 credits per day
Standard Class: 50 credits per day
Stellar Class: 100 credits per day
Republic / Imperial Class: 150 credits per day.

Standard Maintenance and Restocking

Every spaceport of standard class or better will automatically perform standard restock and maintenance on any ship that has landed, typically within one planetary day from the ship’s arrival. Spaceports also automatically charge the fees for these services - to avoid this extra charge, ship captains must specify that they are declining these services.

Standard restocking includes replenishment of all necessary fluids - water, lubricating fluids and coolants - oxygen and other life support gases as well as basic proteins for food converter systems (though it does not cover luxury items such as fresh food or liquor). Waste removal,
decontamination and landing-gear stress checks are also performed automatically and are covered by the docking fees.

The Standard maintenance package covers replacement of air filters, gravitational disks and ablative heat shields. A mechanic droid will also re-calibrate the intake and firing cells of the ion engine, and do basic maintenance on the hyperdrive.

On most ships, this work can be done from the exterior of the ship, through intake manifolds and service accessways, and can take as little time as a standard hour if the service crew is well trained (or well motivated, preferably with a large number of strategically placed bribes). Some poverty-stricken tramp freighters avoid restocking their ship until their stock of consumables runs out, but this is quite dangerous: if the ship is tranded for any reason, the crew could die of starvation before rescuers could arrive.

The Cost for restocking is based on what is called a “base fee”. Most starports in fairly well travelled routes charge around 10 credits as a base fee, while isolated starports (such as some in the Outer Rim territories) may charge a base fee as high as 35 credits (since food and supplies are expensive to ship to such out of the way locales). To determine the cost of restocking fees, do the following math:

Restocking Fee = Base Fee x Total Crew and Passenger Capacity x Number of days’ worth of consumables to be renewed.

Spoiler: Example:Show

Maintenance Overhaul

After every 20 hyperspace jumps, the ship should have a complete overhaul and certain components of the engines should be replaced. Failure to have this maintenance introduced various random elements in the ship’s otherwise smooth operation, such as hyperdrive cut-outs, burn-outs, malfunctions, lessened power supply or lessened output to systems and any other kind of things that can plague a Freighter Captain.

The cost of this maintenance overhaul is around 1,000 credits on the average, but vessels that have been heavily modified or see an inordinately amount of usage can cost as much as 5,000 credits. All such prices are, of course, negotiable with the local maintenance Chiefs of the starport of choice.
Kraethas Nova
Crimson Falcon Courier Service
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
If you like my writing style, check out the following guides:
Drinks | Tramp Freighter Trading | The Galactic Spaceport | Space travel and regulations
Posted Sep 11, 17 · OP
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3. Starship Repairs

[Poster’s note: when it comes to repairs, each book gives a few hard rules on how to perform them, with game mechanics and such. For the needs of this guide, I’ve tried to keep the core essence, while dumping the mechanics, in an attempt to present an overview on how much it would cost to repair a system. For more information - if you or your guild is using the D6 system - refer to the books I’ve mentioned at the top of this guide.]

Repairing starships can be a lengthy and expensive process. Assuming the crew performs the repairs themselves, the following guidelines present an overall cost of the materials and replacement parts required in order to repair a starship. If a crew hires someone else to perform the repairs, take into account that labour work usually costs as much as buying the parts. So, after calculating a system’s cost for parts, you double it to include the labour costs of hiring someone to repair it.

Alternatively, some Captains may decide to utilize used parts for their repairs. While this is cheaper - used parts come at 50% of the cost of the new part - it is risky, since they are not as reliable as new parts - they may wear out quickly, or they may have been abused and short out or fail at a critical moment.

Repair times also depend on the magnitude of repairs required on a ship. Finally, a ship is never repaired “as a whole”. Usually, there are a number of systems that requires repairs and each must be repaired individually. Whenever a starship requires some repairs, the common thing is that you’ll have people working on each system that requires repairs, as well as the ship’s hull itself - if it has been breached - and sum up all the costs for each individual system plus hull.

A brief overview of repair costs as well as damage levels would be 15% of the Starship's total cost for Light damaged, 25% for heavy damages, 35% for severe (but still functional) damage, and 50% for the total replacement of a destroyed system. Likewise, the time required to repair a Light damage averages around 15 minutes, heavy damage around 1 standard hour and severe damage damage would take 2 hours. Also, when repairing a system you go step by step from highest damage to lowest.

Spoiler: ExampleShow

So, yes, repairing a ship using replacement parts is - and it is supposed to be - expensive! It’s is also part of the price of doing business, and also why there are still parts out there for you to buy, bub… It’s a nice, tidy profit for all those resellers.

This sums up what I believe is the most important information to keep in mind about a spaceport. Hopefully, it will spark a few conversations over a casual drink in a cantina about how a Captain had to pay the restocking fees, because he forgot to decline. And how that almost cost him his entire profit :)

Stay tuned for the next installment. I think I’ll be covering the official papers needed for someone to be a legal Ship owner and Captain next, along with a few notes on Infractions and punishments.

Cheers!
Kraethas Nova
Crimson Falcon Courier Service
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
If you like my writing style, check out the following guides:
Drinks | Tramp Freighter Trading | The Galactic Spaceport | Space travel and regulations
Posted Sep 11, 17 · OP
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I’m adding the part I missed about this guide, and also adding a link to the first thread for easier reference. Enjoy!

4. Approach, Departure and METOSP

It’s always good for Spacers to know certain things when entering or exiting a system: landing and take-off protocol, flight conditions in-system, proper procedure for zipping around traffic patterns and so forth.

Rather than quote the boring portions of the Republic / Imperial Space Ministry’s “Spacers’ Information Manual”, I’ll just summarize some general information on starport flight protocol for you. Not that smuggler types ever pay attention to any of this - I doubt Han Solo has every filed a flight plan and I’m sure Tru’eb Cholakk has rarely asked for lift-off clearance before blasting out of a docking bay. Still, it doesn’t hurt to know…

METOSP

METOSP (pronounced “Me-tosp”) stands for “Message to Spacers”, a comm channel most starports reserve for general notices regarding traffic patterns, conditions at the starport or other factors spacers should be aware when heading in or out of a port.

METOSPs exist to inform spacers - they’re one-way broadcasts usually sending prerecorded messages updated daily or as conditions change. Don’t bother transmitting any information or questions back - it’s all automated. Spacers with questions often wait until they contact starport control before obtaining more specific information. Most Republic / Imperial, Stellar and Standard class starports broadcast METOSPs on a standard comm channel. Few limited service starports have METOSPs, so spacers need to rely on their sensors and visual scanning to assess whether there are any traffic problems.

Always tune into your METOSP channel when you enter a system. You never know when a METOSP will contain information regarding Republic or Imperial Naval activity, starport traffic tie-ups, a continuous piracy threat, or an astrographical problem like meteor showers.

METOSPs also provide general information on the starport, including an abbreviated starport profile and often a planetary profile, as well as important landing information and the comm channel where starport control can be reached.

Sample METOSPs

Spoiler: Message to Spacers approaching Ralltiir.Show

Spoiler: Message to spacers approaching Dulin StarportShow

Spoiler: Message to spacers in the Wroona systemShow

Spoiler: Message to spacers preparing departures from Kuat for Core Worlds destinationsShow

Arrival Procedures

After arriving in our destination system and checking for any METOSPs, switch over to the starport control comm channel - usually given in the system’s METOSP or planetary or starport profile in your starship computer. If you can’t find it, scan the comm channels until you do, or until you figure out that the port is so small it doesn’t have a controller on the comm board.

Standard practice when you contact starport control is to verbally identify your ship and captain’s name. Controllers may ask for last port of call, contents of cargo bay or number of passengers and crew aboard, although this varies wildly from port to port. During this short interrogation, starport officials are often double checking the verbal identification information you gave them against their BoSS (Bureau of Ships and Services) databank records and your transponder code - a process known among starport controllers as “Transponder Verification or “TransVere”.

Once they’ve verified your identification, they’ll give you clearance to enter the traffic pattern, drop in and land, and send you to a docking area. Controllers often provide specific approach and traffic vector course information they expect captains to follow - deviating from a course within a starport’s traffic pattern sometimes incurs fines between 50 and 200 credits. Penalties are a little more severe if you cause major problems and the fines will be the least of your worries (like, ship impounding, thorough inspection, legal action that holds you land-bound and missing your deadlines… Stuff like that).

Departure procedures

Departure procedures are probably the most ignored procedures in the Spacer’s Information Manual. Getting somewhere usually isn’t the problem - it’s getting away quickly that counts.
For those of you who want to follow the proper departure rules, the first thing you do before even warming up your ion drive is give starport control a call to request departure clearance. As with arrivals, obtaining clearance to take off involves a TransVere.

Once you’ve been cleared to lift off, control usually likes spacers to log in some kind of flight plan, usually the name of the next system they’re jumping to. This is more for safety verification than anything else. If a ship is reported missing, rescue and retrieval teams check with the last port of call to find the flight plan, then begin looking along realspace travel corridors along the probably hyperspace vector taken.

After take-off, starport controllers, droids or tractor beams may help the starship into the outbound traffic pattern. Outbound beacons or verbal instructions from controllers guide spacers through the complex traffic patterns and departure vectors away from the starport before spacers begin setting up for their hyperspace jumps.

[Poster’s note: In our tabletop campaign we had agreed that a hyperspace jump requires about 15 to 20 minutes’ worth of calculations from the ship’s computer before being capable to engage the Hyperdrive. The Captain, Pilot or designated Astrogator, may begin these calculations early - even while landed on the planet - if the starport allows him/her to utilize the planetary sensor arrays - a charged service available to some large spaceports.

We had also ruled that due to the conceptual motion of the galaxy and minutiae changes in the relevant locations of the stellar bodies involved, such calculations are good for a few hours - roughly four - from the time of their creation. If a ship hasn’t made the jump to hyperspace until then, they need to start the calculations all over. This, of course, was a house rule that my party liked, so we used it, it is not canon or mentioned anywhere, but the general idea that it takes a while to complete calculations exists in the movies - almost in every scene in which the Falcon dodges TIEs while calculating the jump to hyperspace]
Kraethas Nova
Crimson Falcon Courier Service
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
If you like my writing style, check out the following guides:
Drinks | Tramp Freighter Trading | The Galactic Spaceport | Space travel and regulations
Posted Sep 11, 17 · OP
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