Welcome to Dwarf Stars and Dark Nebula (DSDN), the official table-top role playing game (RPG) of FarCorners Studios (FCS)! DSDN brings old world concepts into the future, and has players explore a newly chartered region of space as a member of a space-faring race.
DSDN is set against the backdrop of intergalactic conflicts throughout the 22nd century. For hundreds of years, the Isyan Allegiance and the Hexadonian Federation have been at odds with the Union of Interstellar Alliances (UIA). The UIA is a federation of independent alliances stretched across two galaxies. The Brotillian Confederacy and the Xenorian Cotillion are two of the most prominent members that lead the UIA in its goal to establish peace, order, and prosperity. Earth was at the center of a major war that brought the UIA in to liberate the planet from the Isyan occupation. The United Terran Alliance was created after Earth was rebuilt and Humans ventured out into space to join the other galactic powers as the latest member of the UIA. The war between the Isyan and the UIA ended with an armistice, but tensions among the rival groups and their respective member nations flare periodically. In short, the universe is a powder keg ready to explode.
The galaxies are not fully explored, and a new star system was recently discovered by the Isyan Allegiance and the Brotillian Confederacy. The white dwarf binary star system contains nine planets, an asteroid field, and an unstable nebula. The Brotillians settled on the seventh planet and the Isyans colonized the third planet. A new element was discovered by the Brotillians on their planet and the Isyans discovered the same element in the asteroid field that divided the inner three planets from the rest. Shortly after, the other major races arrived, laying claim to planets in the system. The UIA and the Isyan Allegiance agreed to designate the system as an economic zone, establishing the entire sector as neutral territory.
The citizens of the planetary system, unofficially called Xha’lem, know that peace is fragile, and war is forever looming over their heads. Only four of the nine planets are currently occupied and the inhabitants of the star system seem to enjoy neutrality. Many work hard to maintain the peace, even as conflicts arise elsewhere in the universe. Still, as is always the case, diversity brings with it difference, and difference can lead to disagreements that can escalate in uncontrollable ways. Even though you may feel separated from your race’s homeworld, you are still inextricably connected to your people’s decisions and their destiny. Whether you are a senator vying for political power, a bounty hunter in search of your next pay day, or an engineer building a new space port, there is a lot to do in this corner of the galaxy.
Your first step in playing an adventurer in the DSDN game is to imagine and create a character of your own. Your character is a combination of game statistics, role playing, and your imagination. You choose a race and a profession, and, at some point, a mech. You also invent the personality, appearance, and backstory of your character. Once completed, your character serves as your representative in the game, your avatar in Dwarf Stars and Dark Nebula.
DSDN is guided by someone who serves as the Story Master (SM). The SM is equivalent to the Dungeon Master (DM) or Game Master (GM) of other RPGs. The SM is the singular force that controls and guides the entire game. The SM develops the underlying story/campaign/adventure. Although this manual will provide for the rules and background information, including items and key concepts, the SM can create their own worlds, items, characters, and even rules.
DSDN is similar to other popular role playing games, using multi-sided dice as the basis of the mechanics of game play. If you are not already familiar with multi-sided dice, here is a quick explanation:
There are seven multi-sided dice (4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 20, Percentile) traditionally used in table-top RPGs.
The die that is to be used in the game will also be preceded by the letter “D” (D8, D10, D100).
If more than one of the same type of die is needed, the letter D will be preceded by the number representing how many of that particular die is needed or how many times that one die is to be rolled to get the total number for the desired result. For example, the action or penalty may require two six-sided dice to be rolled. It will be illustrated in this manual as “2D6”. The player (or the Story Master) can also roll one six-sided die twice.
When you must roll for a percentage, or if the rules require a D100 to be cast, you are looking to generate a number between 1 and 100 by rolling two different ten-sided dice. One is the D10, which is numbered from 0 to 9, and the other is the percentile die that is numbered in tens (00, 10, 20, etc). The D10 provides for the ones place, and the percentile provides for the tens place. For example, if you need a 49, you would roll the percentile and the D10 together. In order to get 49, the percentile die would have to be a 40 and the D10 die will have to be a 9. In order to get 100 from these two dice, you would have to roll a 00 and a 0. If you do not have a percentile die, you can use 1D10 rolled twice. Do not roll 2D10s for this situation. The first roll of the D10 would be the tens place, or the equivalent of the percentile die. The second roll of the D10 would be the ones place. 100, in the event of two D10s would be represented by two 0s; 05 would be represented by 0 and 5; and 10 would be represented by 1 and 0.
There are times when you may have to add or subtract additional points from the final roll of the dice. These could be penalties or bonuses. For example, “2D10+3” means you roll two ten-sided dice, add them together, and add 3 to get the total.
In the rare times a D2 or D3 is required you can use this rule:
D2: Roll any die and assign a 1 to any odd number or a 2 to any even number.
D3: Roll a D6 and divide the number rolled by 2, rounding up.