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Mystaraspace: Navigation

by Bruce Heard

This is where things get really weird. Feel free to jump in and suggest different approaches for this. I'm just putting down some ideas -- this isn't a final contribution, naturally.


Navigation: Planets hurtle through space at high speeds, however, their Skyshields prevent air friction from interfering with their course to some degree. Mystara's moon, Matera, is an airless satellite by design. It has its own Skyshield to prevent air from reaching it. Vast quantities of air filling Mystara's outer-space move along with the planets and their moons. The further one travels from a planet's orbital path, the more turbulence, until reaching another air current. "Cosmic turbulence" is more than enough to rip apart any ship attempting to cross through without protection.

Magic can be used to avoid some of the effects of cosmic turbulence. Find the Path not only allows a travelling ship to target the appropriate spot to reach a planet, but if cast at sufficient level, enables the ship to accelerate to planetary speeds (the "warp* speed described in Champions of Mystara). The spell causes the ship and its passengers to become partly incorporeal, thereby avoiding the problem of air resistance, cosmic turbulence, and intervening obstacles in the ship's path. Crossing regions of cosmic turbulence remains a rough ride nevertheless. The experience level needed to cast the spell amounts to one level for 10 tons of material to be displaced (ship, cargo, and passengers for example).

Travelling ships also have to contend with pockets of rarefied air and varying temperatures. So far, no humidity has slipped into the breathable space, so no earth-like storms should be expected. There could be pockets of other gases and electrical phenomena affect Mystara space.