Greetings from Deimos! Our broadcasting schedule has not been particularly irregular, but planetary rotation has. You may have missed the episodes beamed into deep space.
Episode 29, “So you want to be CEO?”
With thanks to Rayne the Skunk for this topic, from a question floated on the Hc Svnt Dracones Discord chat: “What if the players want to make their own megacorp?” The hosts are all over the place with this one, but that is again in part due to planetary rotation.Show Notes:
♃ 1.07 — Get to know the hosts. Guys, what’s your big startup company idea? Also, Corbeau nails the dismount. For your referential delight, “Giant Laser Space Frisbees.”
♃ 3.30 — If you don’t particularly want to have a pleasant evening, you could watch this video on lion infanticide. Or don’t.
♃ 3.51 — If you kickstarted the “Sound and Silence” project and got your own space station or bluesky, please consider telling us about it at “Project Blue Skies!” And check out the new site, the Radio Free Deimos Codex. It’s very work-in-progress, but there IS progress… The “submit” functionality isn’t built into the Codex page yet, but you can always drop us a note.
♃ 6.38 — Today’s topic: What if the PCs want to make their own megacorp? The hosts get more than a bit derailed by the question of what does the question mean, or what does “want” mean…also, just so you don’t feel like you haven’t learned anything, Wikipedia article on eudaimonia.
♃ 9.33 — Already the topic has escaped our control. It’s branched into “what if the PCs want to form a megacorp,” “what if I want to form a megacorp,” “should the PCs be able to form a megacorp,” and “why would anybody want to run a megacorp, anyway?”
♃ 10.41 — I swear somewhere there’s a mention of marriage as a type of contract somewhere in the book, but it doesn’t seem to be in the color text of HSDExt1.0p.170…there’s a lot there about how child-rearing is tied into employment contracts, but that’s a slightly different topic. Oh well, I’m wrong on this one.
♃ 12.21 — The section on “Economy” in Sound and Silence (SOS1.0p.16? draft version) discusses what it means to be a megacorp. Age, subsidiaries, social recognition, the ability to exploit large numbers of citizens…more or less the qualities that let a government exist.
♃ 10.41 — On the origins of the megacorps: Marsco was originally formed some 700 years ago as a fusion of three other corporations. It spun off ASR and Pulse over time, and later IRPF grew out of Marsco’s interal security force. Spyglass just sort of evolved, I don’t think there’s a strong origin story for it, but Progenitus grew out of a Spyglass investigation of the state of Sol medicine, a society-changing event. TTI was formed some 300 years ago, initially as an eco-friendly terraforming startup/biotech concern, but they expanded to Megacorp status when they developed Transcendent Technology. And Lumen plunged into the world within the last two years gametime, bringing game-changing lightspeed technology.
♃ 14.21 — Not a lot of information on the megacorp that created Longbow (SOS1.0p.126), except that they massively overspent and tried to bilk the various insurance companies of Sol out of a lot of money to cover their debts. This megacorp no longer exists…
♃ 15.36 — Not sure how this will end up rolling out in Hc Svnt Dracones 2.0, but in 1.0 (HSD1.0p.100) Community: Presence represents your ability to influence the entire game setting, across all of Sol. It overlaps a bit with Community: Strength, which is your general reputation.
♃ 20.15 — All kinds of information about the shadow presidency in Sound and Silence, coming soon!
♃ 22.54 — Apocolocyntosis is one of those entirely useless words, it’s the process by which roman emperors become gourds.
♃ 23.36 — Epic Destinies were a concept out of 4th edition D&D: After level 20, characters started advancing on their final storyline, which would elevate them to gods, monsters, or otherwise, and ultimately remove them from the world of playable characters. Their ultimate destiny would give them some very exciting powers, which almost always included some nifty resurrection power. Fun times.
♃ 36.29 — There are very few spinoff companies mentioned in the core books, though a few more are suggested in Sound and Silence, which we’re still digesting. Reveidolon is the antagonist corporation in Fate’s Fangs, the HSD novel. They’re a medical research group, not nice people. Genesis is the biggest private education group in Sol, a MarsCo spinoff (HSD1.0p.34).
♃ 45.22 — Pierce Fraser has a nice metaphor for megacorp on page 21 (draft) of Sound and Silence. The megacorp is a pyramid built out of two-way mirrors. At the botton level, millions of pillars support the structure. At the top level, only a few. The levels above can peer dimly below, their vision fuzzier with each layer. And no one pillar can really wreck the entire structure. Good metaphor.
♃ 52.30 — The story of the mouse revolution, since we’ve already mentioned them earlier in this episode. The rat-run megacorp “Genotype” created mouse vectors as a slave race. At some point, the mice slipped their bonds and executed the board of directors, quite messily, destroying the megacorp and winning their freedom. This is one of those “too good to be true” stories…
♃ 54.07 — The hosts ramble a bit about their ongoing Sunday game, and the challenge of having a party of entirely unlinked characters.
♃ 54.57 — We’ve mentioned them before, but Fear the Boot is a pretty amazing and long-lived RPG advice podcast. Episode #2 focused on building the group template, or “how to do a lot better than ‘you meet in a tavern.'”
♃ 1.03.16 — What’s awesome? The hosts chat about articles and fun producst and such they think are interesting. This week, Whines mentions some updates to the Wikifur “Hyenas” article. Huh.
♃ 1.03.51 — Corbeau talks about OGLE-2016-BLG-1190Lb, the borderline planet/brown dwarf the size of 13 jupiters, lurking near the heart of the galaxy.