The OTU Code

To the IMTU main page.

why a separate code?

The IMTU code is a picture of how you run your Traveller games; the assumptions you bring to the table as a referee, or even as a player. Others can use it as a clue about what your games are like, and how close it mirrors the Official Traveller Universe (OTU), without claiming priority over the OTU itself.

The OTU code is for divisive or contentious positions. In this sense it is complementary to the IMTU code. The typical reason for contention on Traveller forums has to do with the Official Traveller Universe -- topics which spring up and threaten to unseat or replace how the Official Traveller Universe works. In trying to sift out how things "ought" to work, we may form strong, often immovable convictions. That's what the OTU code represents.

what is a holy war?

holy war (semi-official paraphrase)
An argument that involves certain basic tenets of faith, about which one cannot disagree without setting one of these off.
holy war (forums definition)
A never-ending, unchanging (and very boring for others) argument in which the opinions of combatants on both sides of the issue never budge an inch. Common holy-war topics include religion, abortion, which operating system is superior, and the optimum way to dispense toilet paper.

what isn't a holy war

Certain issues are NOT holy wars, in that sharp divisions of opinion do not seem to revolve around faith. One example is Proto-Traveller. Even "High Guard versus Book 2" isn't usually a holy war. This is because a holy war requires one person to believe they are "right" and the others "wrong": in the case of HG vs B2, both sides can claim to be right, but neither can reasonably argue that the other is wrong. Thus, no holy war. Usually.

Also, personal opinions are often not holy wars, either, no matter how strongly held. In order to be a holy war, there needs to be protracted discussion, as outlined in the above definition.

what do you call people who fan the flames of a holy war?

Just for grins, I'm calling people who engage in holy wars Quixotes. It doesn't sound like a bad title, but I don't think it's particularly complimentary. I'm one, by the way. Quixotes generally are uncomfortable with the idea that their discussions could be considered Holy Wars, and usually are convinced that only one side can reasonably claim truth (theirs).

OTU codes

This isn't formal or anything, but I think the best way to represent your OTU/holy war codes is to have a line separate from your IMTU code. Call it "OTU" or something. This way the IMTU code doesn't get its hands completely dirty with holy war issues, and so if you want to be more coy about your beliefs you can stick to the IMTU only.

I also suggest that you indicate the percentage of codes which you find yourself firmly opinionated on; i.e. the percentage of issues you have a code for in the Holy War index. This in itself should tell you and others something about you:

	0-4%     Laissez-faire.
	5-27%    Easygoing.
	28-72%   Opinionated.
	73-95%   Strongly opinionated.
	96-100%  Perhaps you spend too much time with Traveller.

But really, use them however seems best. If this ends up being useful, then we'll probably standardize on a format. Otherwise, it doesn't matter, does it?

Please note: these codes are for your strong feelings only. If you're on the fence or willing to temporize on one of these, then it's not your Holy War. Just let it pass.

OTU 44% an+ dt+ ge- j- jf+ n- pi+ pp+ tr+ tv- uwp+ xb+
3i 3rd Imperium Control
3i+ The Imperium has strong fleets and strong control over member worlds.
3i- The Imperium has weak fleets and weak control over member worlds.
an ANNIC NOVA
an+ The ANNIC NOVA is canonical.
an- The ANNIC NOVA is non-canonical.
au Automation (starship)
au+ Starship automation is canonically OK.
au- Starship automation would wreck the OTU.
br Bridges (starship)
br+ Bridges must be as they are, for example 20 tons for a Type S.
br- Bridges should be much smaller, for example 4 tons for a Type S.
cpu Computers
cpu+ Computers must be large, bulky, and expensive.
cpu- Computers must be tiny, less expensive, and more capable than typically shown.
dt Droptanks (ta)
dt+ Droptanks are integral to the setting.
dt- Droptanks cannot exist.
f Fighters vs capital ships
f+ Fighters must be effective.
f- Fighters must not be effective.
fs Foreven sector
fs+ Foreven sector data must be canonized.
fs- Foreven sector data is best as a preserve.
ge Gearheadedness
ge+ A foundation of realism is required (for example, to keep Traveller internally consistent).
ge- Playability trumps realism.
ih Ihatei invasions
ih+ Ihatei invasions happened exactly as printed.
ih- Ihatei invasions were impossible as printed.
inf Information distribution speeds
inf+ Information typically moves at typical market speeds.
inf- Information always moves faster than market speeds.
j Jump drive
j+ Burns hydrogen (jump fuel).
j- Powered by the power plant.
jf Jump fuel
jf+ Burned just before jump.
jf- Burned throughout jump.
jm Jump masking
jm+ Yes
jm- No
jt Jump drive minimum ship volume (100t)
jt+ Yes
jt- No
ls Life support
ls+ Has to be maintained at a starport
ls- Can be maintained by an engineer with some spare parts
n Naval budgets
n+ Big
n- Small
nc Near-C rocks
nc+ Yes
nc- No
pi Piracy
pi+ Yes
pi- No
pp Power-plant
pp+ As written, leakiness and all
pp- Ridiculous as written
ssi Small-ship imperium
ssi+ Of course!
ssi- Never!
tp Proto-Traveller
tp+ Of course!
tp- Never!
tr Trade system
tr+ Works great
tr- Abysmally broken
tv Traffic volume
tv+ High
tv- Low
uwp Mainworld gen
uwp+ Works great!
uwp- Abysmally broken
vi Virus
vi+ Of course!
vi- Absurd!
xb X-boat route
xb+ Love it!
xb- Makes no sense at all