Community – The official Traveller Calendar 2014

I have to declare my current system is not capable of rendering the scene prepared for the calendar. Due to memory allocation problems Blender crashes when processing a file with more than 1.4 GB on Win32. That is a limitation of the OS, not Blender.

So to ease my pain the last days have been busy to get a donated HP Proliant DL145 G2 Server up and running. The AMD64 Opteron 285 based machine runs on Debian 7 Wheezy 64 Bit with a MATE desktop environment, 8 GB of RAM and a number of services necessary for remote dealing with the beast. Another 8 GB of Ram went into the machine three days later (the latter being only borrowed form the donator of the machine) and so far she rocks…

Due to it’s age, performance comes at a certain cost: noise. Seven 5cm tubular ventilators sound like one hairdryer each and make an infernalistic noise that just prevents a human being to share the same room with the system at max performance. However it does successfully render the entire scene and is twice as fast as my aging workstation. So that makes the monster a necessity to live with. And never judge a gift horse by it’s teeth…

The inaugural run of the new RenderMachine went interestingly smooth with very nice speed and comfortable remote usage (it’s located in the next room and the noise is bearable with the connecting door closed).

The image below has a memory footprint of 6200+ MB and was rendered in 18 minutes and 30 seconds. My old machine usually made it through half the render process in 20 Minutes and then Blender crashed.


Final Image: “Meet the Lone Lady“

The image above shows the finished scene. Personally I like the dawn lighting and the washed out colors, als well as the contrast the Aero’s car paint provides. The first scene had Logos of most of the Traveller Megacorps. It looked really great. But I managed to delete all the SVG’s in one go and had to start over. Less is often more, so the Akerut logo boldly overlooks the starport. A tiny Bazar-Sign at the end of the landing field hints toward the existence of a startown. Well the cup of hot brewerage now has a smoke/steam effect too.

That’s about it, I’d say. Cheers.

Il’l keep ya posted!

Edit November 23rd, 2013: It’s done. I’ve submitted my donation to Ian and hope to get through the final descision making process. Thanks for taking a look.

Edit April 2nd, 2014: No calendar published this year. I must admit I’m a bit disappointed. However Ian – the editor and publisher – stated he was short a few images to fill the cal, so I guess we’ll have another chance next year.

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Community – The official Traveller Calendar 2014
Category: Community,Traveller — admin @ 14:21
13 2013

Starships – Meet the Lone Lady (200dt Far Trader)

So now that I have finally made the descision to include the Far Trader in my Traveller Calendar 2014 submission, I have to get going with the texturing of the vessel. Rob Caswell published a drawing of the Far Trader challenging the DA Community to come up with a paint scheme (or – well – colorizing the ship).


I used his Drawing to create the following paint scheme which is also my current favorite for this ship. I tried to touch a bit on classic 70ies car racing colours (GULF Racing used a light blue and orange coloring).

And now the textured model. I think with a dusty weathering and some more decals I will be good. The bump map, specular map and an admittedly generic hull plating have alteady been added. This works fine for now.

And here comes the drawing…


The tail number states homeworld, ship type, registration number and sector abbreviation and says “Gerim, A2-58738 RD” (RD for Reaver’s Deep).

Next image shows the ship grounded with an open Airlock…


Set in a starport scene I’m currently developing…


Stay tuned for future updates.

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Starships – Meet the Lone Lady (200dt Far Trader)
Category: Far Trader,Starship,Traveller,WIP — admin @ 20:40
05 2013

Workshop – Coffee at the Port

After committing to donate another image to the official Traveller Calendar 2014 and possibly a proposed official 2300AD Calendar 2014, I’ve started working on the concept of the new image.

Have a peek…


Key elements are the presentation of typical Traveller ships or vehicles landed on a remote starport – possibly a Class C, perhaps a Class B. I always wanted to do a piece with the Armored Merchant, the Free Trader and perhaps the Patrol Cruiser or the Fat Trader. The latter is currently in the works, so maybe that’s a maybe.


Here are the pieces I use for Inspiration. William H. Keith drew a scene with the Armored Merchant for the RPG Mag “High Passage” No. 3 (1982). A scan of that drawing is also shown in my article about the ship, which forms the basic scene, as you may see when comparing it with the sketch above…


This will be appended to the left to leave more room for more action. The Free Trader will probably go to the left as shown in my first concept sketch above. The ship in the far center of the screen is not decided upon yet. It might be the Scout Courier shown, but that would essentially mean I have to model that ship, or it might be the Patrol Cruiser or Subsidized Merchant. Perhaps I will even use the Challenge Class Subsidized Merchant I made for TheTravellerGroup Challenge on deviantART.

Further inspiration comes from various Favourites I collected on deviantART, as for example (and not in any particular order):
A spaceship and some coffee by ~DrawingNightmare
Mars Spaceport by *JonHrubesch
Rig by *WhoAmI01
A Long Journey by ~JadrienC
Boomz Bike by ~claren89
OTJ 05 by ~Apostolon-IAM
Castaway by *steve-burg
Hello? Is there anyone here? by *BenWootten

There are likely more that I will add later, as the project progresses.

So whats needed? First of all I’ll need terrain with environment (includes Sky, Lighting and the like. This will probably be done in Terragen or in  Blender) so the scene has the right frame. I’ll probably do my own with the exception of the clouds. Terraspace is the correct term for this kind of image, which only forms the stage for the scene here.

Obviously I need the ship and vehicle models. I already have the Traveller ships and need to model a decent looking motor bike or car. I already dropped the idea of placing a gull-wing door car into the scene but a ute or something along that line would do too.

And there will be a few Characters in there, that need representation. Especially two are fairly detailed. Susan Bonner in the front an Tarlon Rhaan leaning on the motorbike/ute (with a mug of coffee) on the left side. I hope to use my old Mr. Default for the rest of the image, as he is low on poly-count and far in the distance or shadows.

Containers, crates, luggage and cargo handling equipment are needed to be moved around, about and aboard and the passengers and crew scattered about the landing field to depict a busy port are needed too.

The Free Trader in the image above will be the Brawlin Beast. See a glimpse of her here…


And there is an ambulance livery in the works for the Lopec G-Carrier.


Tiny update: Less than one month to the deadline.

I fiddled around with the scene a bit and fixed other questions. My hardware will pretty much limit the complexity of the scene. I first decided to make it a daylight scene as the lighting is much simpler. But RL time constraints I won’t leave me with too much time for good texturing. So I will likely make it a foggy scene or hazy scene in early evening light or in the morning light.
However I’ll have to see how that turns out.

So… The vehicle… I do have an old model of a flying gull wing door car that could be great for the scene. Which basically means that I have all the vehicle’s models ready at hand. They will need paint, though.Maybe a simple Air/Raft is sufficient. I have yet to decide..


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Workshop – Coffee at the Port
Category: 3D-Model,Armored Merchant,Free Trader,Ground Vehicle,Starship,Subsidized Merchant,Traveller,Workshop — admin @ 18:00
31 2013

Starships – 100ton Type H Bounty Hunter

The famed Type H (SN) Bounty Hunter from White Dwarf Mag No.70 is sadly one of the ccoolest ships ever designed an published for Traveller. The deckplan promised a very sleek ship.

One of the cooler Feature is it’s revolving vehicle Bay. A design feature that practically encourages fast paced hit and run action.

The sad truth is there is no full side view available. Actually no one seems to know for sure how it’s supposed to look like. This model matches the deck plans and the visible side profile of the published material.

I always wanted to do it in 3D and it was meant to prove every detail of it’s ultra cool appearance.

How can it be, that it utterly fails to look cool?


I never expected it to look so chubby.


Now I’m going to tweak the model to look cool. And I will use Ian Steeds Version the „Huntress“ as my primary source of dimenional data.

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Starships – 100ton Type H Bounty Hunter
Category: 3D-Model,Bounty Hunter,Starship,Traveller — admin @ 22:43
29 2013

Starships – 100dt X-Boat

100dt X-Boat

Constructed using the 100 ton hull, the express boat is fitted with drives producing jump-4, but no maneuver drive. Fuel tankage is sufficient for one jump. The cramped bridge is complemented by a Model/4 computer. The ship has two staterooms; one is necessary for the single crew member, while the other can carry a passenger. More often, the pilot uses the second room for additional living space. There is a one ton cargo bay which is occasionally used to carry vital cargo such as vaccines or sophisticated repair parts.The ship carries no weapons or hardpoints.

It is equipped with Jump drive-B and a Modified Power Plant-C, and carries sufficient fuel for one Jump-4, and 1 month of operations. Note that the ship when in Jump space can effectivly operate in low power mode thanks to the minimal systems needs and Fusion+ distributed power system. Transfer pumps enable double jumps via detachable drop tanks, which the X-boat service produces in a ’standard‘ 100 ton size to enable quick refueling and jump procedures for the normal X-boat fleet if the tender itself is too busy to dock with the X-boat. The extremely advanced surface communicator is used to tight-beam sensitive encrypted communications to pre-set system ‚listening posts‘ bypassing the need to pass these messages through the X-boat tender crews.

Modeling the X-Boat

So finally I’m going to tackle the X-Boat and Tender for my Traveller ship portfolio. Frankly I didn’t knew in the beginning about how to make an X-Boat look interesting in any way. Maybe I still wonder. But I’m going to model it any way. Even if it’s only blocked out, so I can continue later at any given time.


The first render shows the X-Boat uprigt (as it’s deck layout is vertical) in a Dark Red and Light Grey scheme. The two main outer features are the bridge windows and the double airlock on the starbord side. So thats what you’re going to see.


The second render shows the ship in IISS olive and light grey color scheme.


Im just playing with color variations.

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Starships – 100dt X-Boat and 1000dt X-Boat Tender
Category: 3D-Model,Starship,X-Boat — admin @ 17:52
28 2013

Starships – 100 ton Suleiman Class Scout/Courier


The ship uses a 100-ton Lifting Body hull, the scout/courier is intended for exploration, survey, and courier duties, with many in service throughout known space. It mounts drives giving it jump-2 and 2-G acceleration. Installed on its bridge is a computer Model/1bis and attack-range sensors. Detached duty versions have an open lounge where survey sensors would typically go.

There are four staterooms and no low berths. The ship has one hardpoint; installed on the hardpoint is one double turret beam laser. There is one ship’s vehicle: an air/raft. Cargo capacity is 3 tons. The hull has scoops, bins, and a purification plant for wilderness refueling.

The Scout, by its nature, is built as a one-person operation: a single crew person can handle all operations, albeit inefficiently. On the other hand, the Scout can carry three non-commercial passengers in relative comfort, or up to seven with double occupancy.

Vol Name TL Free Gs Jump Power Fuel Duration MCr Computer Crew Psgr. LB Notes
100 Scout/Courier 9 3 2 2 2 22t 4 weeks 52.2 Model/1bis 1 3 0 lb,fs,1t,a/r

I ought to do this ship. It’s classic, it’s iconic and it’s not really my favourite. But it’s a player’s ship too and there are thousands of these scattered about any given Sector of the Third Imperium. Here’s my humble adaption. THe scale is a bit off. The ship is too large. More Updates will follow.

Front View


And one with the Air/Raft garage open.


That’s it for now

   Vol  No  Label                            MCr  Notes                         
 -----  --  ------------------------------ -----  ------------------------------
   100      Lift body Hull, lifters           17  L, lifters                    
    20      Jump Fuel (2  parsecs)             0  J2, 10t/pc                    
     2      Plant Fuel (one month)             0  one month                     
     1      Fuel Scoops 100t/hr              0.1  100t/hr                       
     1      Fuel Intakes 40t/hr              0.1  40t/hr                        
     1      Vd T2 Beam Laser                   1                                
     8   4  Crew Single Stateroom            0.4  1 crew                        
     1      Crew Common Fresher                1  10 crew                       
     9      Crew Lounge                        0                                
     3      Cargo Hold Basic                   0                                
     1      Fuel Bins 20t/hr                 0.1  20t/hr                        
     4      Air/Raft Enclosed                0.1                                
     2      Vehicle Hangar Overhead            0                                
     1      AR Ant Communicator              1.5                                
     1      AR Ant Scope                     1.5                                
     1      Mail Vault                         0  for express contracts         
     2      Clinic                             1  treats common injuries        
     0      AV=5. 1 Kinetic Shell              0                                
     1      Fuel Purifiers 4t/hr               1  4t/hr                         
     3      AR Ext EMS, imported             2.7                                
     0      Jump Grid                          1                                
     4      Forward Lounge                     0                                
     4      PowerPlant-2 (A)                   4  P 2                           
     2      Maneuver Drive-2 (A)               4  2 G                           
    10      Jump Drive-2 (A)                  10  J 2                           
     1      Landing legs with pads             1                                
     1      Life Support Standard              1  10 person-months              
     1      Computer Model/1bis std            3                                
    14      Spacious Controls                  0                                
    99                              TOTALS    52

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Starships – 100 ton Suleiman Class Scout/Courier
Category: 3D-Model,Scout,Starship,WIP — admin @ 02:47
24 2013

Ian Steed – a well known Traveller artist and generally nice guy – allowed me to play with his variant of the Scout/Courier. The base model came in colors (see below) and I will try to give it a personal touch later.


Copyright Ian Steed

Copyright Ian Steed


Copyright Ian Steed

Copyright Ian Steed

Starships – Type CM (Mercenary Cruiser) – HS33 Yamal

My attempt to convert a RiftRoamers RPG (RR) original starship to Traveller. The craft was downsized as ships in RR tend to be larger in general. The appropriate size would have been 1200 tons in RR. However that would have been just another Kinunir which was not my intention.


The ship is designed following Traveller5 rules by using the Traveller5 ACS Shipyard (an online ship-design software for T5 by Robert Eaglestone)

Mercenary Cruiser
CM-HS33 Yamal
[General Shipyards]
Owner: Rhaan Industries
Disposition: In Service

The 800 ton Streamlined Yamal Class Merc Cruiser is a variant of the Broadsword built as an alternative to the Broadsword Merc Cruiser. It’s outer appearance loosely copies the lines of patrol corvette, while being larger of course.

Design requirements: 1 Modular Cutter  (in an external cradle mount accessible through the cargo bay), 2 additional Cutter modules  (in an external cradle mount accessible through the cargo bay), 2 20dt Gigs (in an external cradle mount accessible by special connection tubes), 2 Grav carriers (Lopec or Resolve carried aboard cutter modules, these craft show as overtonnage in the design).


Blocking out the major features in Blender

The design now features Maneuver 3, Jump 3, 3 Month of Powerplant operation and offers 95 tons of cargo space in addition to all the vehicles.

The Image below show the vessels’s Cutter and one of the thre special Container Modules.


Click on the link below to continue with the stats and later with the deck plans too.

Rescued article from old website. Unfortunately the second page is currently not available. It will return though.

Continue reading “Starships – Type CM (Mercenary Cruiser) – HS33 Yamal”

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Starships – Type CM (Mercenary Cruiser) – HS33 Yamal
Category: 3D-Model,IMTU,Mercenary Cruiser,Starship,Traveller,WIP — admin @ 16:00
18 2013

Starships – Type A2 200ton Far Trader

The next project coming up ist one of my favourite small Traveller starships, the Far Trader. As compared to the 200ton Free Trader the far trader has a longer jump leg while sacrificing some cargo space. However it is a cool adventurer ship for excactly that reason.

The finished Marava

Since I  don’t own the MegaTraveller Journal #4 – which contains a lot of info rgarding this ship, Rob Caswell kindly gave me a few illustrations for reference which I actually base my modelling on. This ship’s model is a big nod toward the original designers Tom Peters and Rob Caswell and also my way of giving them and the Traveller community back – in a way – what made my student years so great in regard to roleplaying games.

Vol Name TL Free Gs J PP Fuel Duration MCr Computer Crew Psgr. LB Notes
200 Far Trader 12 65 0 2 2 42 0.5 months 62.20 Model/2 std 4 6 10 st,fs,2t,a/r

The ship uses a 200ton streamlined hull with fuel scoops. It is fitted with a front loading ramp and one side loading ramp port and starboard each. The ship is capable of 1G accelleration and one Jump-2. Whithin it’s 65tons of cargo space the ship can optionally carry an air/raft (typically enclosed like the Hurracan) in an internal hangar, leaving 57 tons of cargo space.

Deckplan Upper Deck: www.daviddrazul.com/traveller/flamingeye/images/ship_updeck.gif

Deckplan Lower Deck: www.daviddrazul.com/traveller/flamingeye/images/ship_lowdeck.gif

I can’t put the referene images online here (I haven’t asked) but the plans shown above are nearly identical (but annotated by the website owner).




Above is the current  state of the Marava (WIP) slowly coming together…

And below is the finished Lone Lady that already made it into a game trailer.

Diese Diashow benötigt JavaScript.



Starships – Type R 400ton Subsidiced Merchant

I’ve dabbled with this one for quite a while and my first approaches included rebuilding my old Cinema 4D Model to match Tom Peters’ drawing in the back of the MT Starship Operators Manual (which can be found on Tom’s DeviantART Gallery).

The most recent stat of the model and its texture is shown in the following image. The Griffin or Eagle-head stripe is taken from one of the color plates by Ian Steed below and used with permission.

Volume: 5453.81 m³ (403,99 dt), Length: 49,51 m, Beam: 39,33 m, Height: 10,55 m

The image below uses DeviantART’s embedding feature.

Fat Trader in Port by Drell-7 on deviantART

The image above uses DeviantART’s embedding feature.

And this is a version featuring the 20dt Patrol Boat that became sort of a surplus by-product of my Patrol Cruiser project.


And last but not least an even more current render. This time however I exchanged the original subcraft with my Versiil Mk.II Class 20 dt Patrol Boat. Still work to do as the Airlock is still missing.


Ian Steed did a few very nice color plates for his variant of the ship.

TYPE R Colour Plates by biomass on deviantART

I asked Ian if I could use his color variants on my model and after his positive feedback I began with the UV-unwrapping process. Three crude quick slap-on textures can be been below.




And more to come…

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Starships – Type R 400ton Subsidiced Merchant
Category: 3D-Model,Starship,Subsidized Merchant,Traveller,WIP — admin @ 13:30
02 2013

Workshop – Projects planned and in progress

While designing a 400ton Donosev ISV I came across the old 50ton Modular Cutter design again and from there went on designing various tubular Small Craft (a Research Pinnace, a Ship’s Boat and a Launch). And as this is a quite interesting topic with roughly multiple dozens of these tiny vessels scuttering about even in the most remote civilised Starsystems the idea came up not only to model all the well known standard small craft but also the various proposed Small Craft variants by Ken Pick on Freelance Traveller.

So following now is a very unstructured list of vehicles, small craft, starships and – if I ever come that far – space stations and ground ports.

Why all this you might ask. I would be proud if the answer would be “to make big money”. But no, I’m a hobbyist. The answer is “just for fun”, to improve my skill set and to finally get my own Non-Traveller RPG/ PC-Game X-Over illustrated and published.

Book 2 Starship Design for Traveller5


There is a Traveller5 Ship Designer (requires Flash) here, which I plan to try out:


Recommended reading for Starship freaks is the Technical Manual:


Continue reading “Workshop – Projects planned and in progress”

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Workshop – Projects planned and in progress
Category: 3D-Model,Space Craft,Starship,Traveller,Vehicle,WIP,Workshop — admin @ 14:11
01 2013