All player characters are part of a Group – usually a band of like-minded individuals with a common set of principles and goals. Your Group can be a group of ten or twenty people or a group of one, but the ideal group size is probably about 5-10 people - enough to fully crew a starship bridge and have a good chance on most missions with a bit of leeway in case people aren't available. If you don't already have a Group, you can set yourself up as a group of one, and then join up with other groups at events. The separate Faction Facebook Groups are a good place to look for a Group to join before coming to an event - links can be found on the Contact Us page.
Your Group is one of the core identifiers for a character in Orion Sphere LRP, along with your Faction and Species. The Game Team uses information about your group to get an idea of plots you might be interested in and what kind of things you might get up to at events. Groups are not the only people you are allowed to hang around with - you can always bring other people along on a Mission from time to time, but your Group is the people you come back to at the end of the day.
All Groups are one of three Types - Military, Scientific and Corporate.
Military Groups tend to solve problems by the application or threat of force and firepower. They are more likely to be organised in a hierarchy or some kind. They could be motivated by a desire for payment or renown, or just the thrill of finding and besting challenges.
Example Concepts: Band of Mercenaries, Elite Military Unit (SAS/Paras/Marines equivalent), Rebel Cell, School of Assassins, Bounty Hunters, Wandering Philosopher-Monk Warriors, Space Privateers, Band of Roving Heroes.
Archetypal Characters: Elite Soldiers, Veteran Captains, Combat medics, Mercenaries, Pirates, Ace Pilots, Mafiosos, killers, Ex-Law Enforcement Officers.
Income: Specialist weapons, Advanced Charge Packs, Advanced Armour and military tech, Military mission Opportunities
Scientific Groups tend to solve problems by investigation and research, or the application of knowledge and specialist skills to the problem. They might be motivated by a lust for knowledge and discovery, or just like looting tombs for profit. To the scientific group, information and knowledge is a useful currency in its own right, and they may be willing to pay large sums or brave terrible dangers to uncover hidden secrets.
Example Concepts: Crew of a Scientific vessel, independent Research Group, University expedition, scientific research company, band of archaeologists, or band of tomb robbers.
Archetypal Characters: Dedicated scientists, bodyguards, archaeologists, xeno-linguists, engineers, strange mystics and savant problem-solvers.
Corporations are highly varied, and focused on earning money, and applying tools and skills to solve problems. They earn more chits than other groups between events, and may also have a variety of basic equipment and even some less common Tech Devices or consumables such as injectors.
Example Concepts: Independent Freighter Crew, Minor Galactic Corporation, Hardscrabble crew of misfits,
Archetypal Characters: Traders, diplomats, corporate suits, expert professionals, guns-for-hire,
Income: Additional chits, rare Tech Devices, various basic equipment and a smattering of other stuff.
At events, Groups receive Group Income - cash, equipment and supplies that they earn or find between events. Exactly what each group gets in their Income depends on their Group Type and the number of people in each group. Group Income is the way we pool a portion of Player Income and make it relevant to what the group does, giving each group some stuff to use or trade at events. We may also provide some unique opportunities or other stuff via Group Income for certain plots in the game.
At the start of each event, each group leader will receive a Group Income pack, that will contain in-game items relevant to that groups interests – how much each group gets will depend on how many characters attending have signed up with your group. Characters do each receive income alone, but the Group Income Pack is more likely to contain weird stuff like special items, artefacts, special mission opportunities and plot hooks.
Military Groups will get things like modded weapons and armour, Charge Packs or combat injectors in their Income pack.
Corporate Groups will get things like extra Energy Chits, tech devices, and a smattering of other gear of various types in their Income.
The Group's Concept describes how they see themselves, and probably ties into their Group Type somewhat. Ideally, your group will share a mostly common purpose, which defines how they operate and the kind of things they get up to in between events.
Many groups present themselves as the crew of a light, fast starship, able to get to and from Events. Some groups may prefer to present themselves as chartering private starships or paying for travel in order to get to events. Exactly how your group gets to events is below the game's abstraction layer - it is assumed that characters can get to events, and however much it costs to pay for travel or maintain a ship is balanced out with income, balancing out as the standard Group Income.
Players are encouraged to form groups with coherent goals and backgrounds – if you need help or inspiration, please contact the game team. Your group is there to facilitate getting involved in the game – no starting character will have the variety of skills needed to do well in the galaxy, and it is worth having a varied set of individuals able to pool their skills to get things done.