The Pact Worlds Militaries


Attack of the Swarm

Liberty's Edge

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One of the things I am most excited about with Attack of the Swarm is the opportunity to learn how the Pact Worlds set up their military structures. Is there a Pact-wide military force, a la the UN Peacekeepers, or NATO's integrated multinational units? Do individual planets have their own navies, which might or might not offer units "on loan" to coordinated commands?

This is particularly interesting to me because the first adventure's title, "Fate of the Fifth," suggests that the PCs will be part of the Fifth, presumably some kind of military unit designation. Will there be rank and issues of command/promotion? A typical modern fireteam is composed of four members, just like the typical size of a role-playing group, but fireteams are not generally as widely-specialized as a RPG group, with medics and technical specialists part of the same group as the infantry. Will we see a description of military doctrine in the Pact that suggests that PC-styled units are widely used, or will the PCs be assembled from more disparate units that follow a more traditional structure, but have been decimated until only the PCs are left?


While this (and any other information about the Pact World society at large) would be interesting I sadly don't expect much.

Paizo seems to be still stuck in a fantasy mindset where modern organization like standing armies or law enforcement either don't exist at all or are only paid lip service to in order to not steal the spotlight from the players or hinder them to go on adventures (No, Sir, you can't take your grenade launcher into the city. Nonlethal sidearms only as per regulation 34X-9. And can I see the license for that plasma rifle, please).

I would really love if Starfinder would, depending on the planet, pay more attention to its SciFi part with believable futuristic cities with all that entails (weapon laws, competent law enforcement, etc), instead of everything being a lawless medieval town just with more steel and billboards.

Back on topic, the Vesk would likely have their own fleet which could easily make up half of the Pact Worlds forces. The rest of the military from the Pact Worlds would likely come from the NPC races, simply because of their population numbers being much higher than the PC race population.

Eox has its own fleet, the anacites have their exploration vessels and protectors and also the economic power to quickly build a dedicated war fleet. Triaxus has the Skyfire Legion + likely a NATO style coalition of forces from the allied territory and the private fleets of the biggest Dragoncorps if they join in. That would imo be the main contributers + a sizeable detachment from the verthani and maybe barathus.
No idea how those different oarts would be forged into a functional military.

Imo it is rather funny that if you think it through the PC races are only small minorities in Starfinder and their influence on the Pact Worlds would be rather minimal.


I was noticing that myself. If you think about it, all the core Starfinder races are minority or outsider populations within the pact worlds.


Shisumo wrote:
One of the things I am most excited about with Attack of the Swarm is the opportunity to learn how the Pact Worlds set up their military structures. Is there a Pact-wide military force, a la the UN Peacekeepers, or NATO's integrated multinational units? Do individual planets have their own navies, which might or might not offer units "on loan" to coordinated commands?

That's sort of what I've been seeing. The intent I've seen when representing the Pact Worlds is that they are less of a unified entity and more of a collection of common interests. For instance, the Corpse Fleet originally WAS Eox's navy until the undead decided to start playing nice and the Fleet was banished/left in disgust

The Stewards are something like UN Peacekeepers and maintain their own fleet but most of the might will likely come from member states and likely more than a few private militaries interested in keeping the Pact Worlds out of foreign hands. So along with members like Verces and the Idari joining a war effort, you would likely see representatives from groups like the Hellknights and the Starfinders.

Shisumo wrote:
Will we see a description of military doctrine in the Pact that suggests that PC-styled units are widely used, or will the PCs be assembled from more disparate units that follow a more traditional structure, but have been decimated until only the PCs are left?

It probably depends on the individual gm and party dynamics. When I run this for my home group, I'm definitely going to play up the angle of a hasty retreat in the face of overwhelming odds and definitely going to encourage my players to make characters that have less of a place on the frontlines.

Scarab Sages

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I think it has been stated that this AP takes place in near space, not in the Pact worlds, so I imagine it would not include much about the Pact worlds military.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

personally, if i had my druthers, the Stewards would be a standing, professional force. elite, top guys.

the Pact Worlds itself would have a military, but it would be sorta decentralized - Eoxian units, Aballonian units, Absalom units - etc.

Sorta like the Union Army in the American Civil War, where the states were raising the bulk of the soldiers, but they were under the US Army command structure.

So units were segmented, but command was unified.

Scarab Sages

Yakman wrote:


Sorta like the Union Army in the American Civil War, where the states were raising the bulk of the soldiers, but they were under the US Army command structure.

So units were segmented, but command was unified.

I really like this explanation. This is a great way to describe how the Pact Worlds might organize a military force.


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dot.


Or like a NATO, but without a US military to provide the bulk of the force and thus take charge.

I'm not sure the various Pact Worlds are tied closely enough together or trust each other enough to work as a unified army. More like multiple allies coordinating, but working semi-independently.

I doubt the PCs will stay in the military for the whole path and it sounds like they start as survivors of a larger group, not necessarily as their own fire team or squad.


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Not to knock Paizo, but I personally wouldn't hold out a lot of hope on this.

There aren't many game designers that I know of (since Roger E. Moore from the TSR days) with a long-term military background. The organization of a military force is strongly dependent on the primary mission: spaceship/starship combat requires different organizational structures than small units (i.e., commandos/scouts/marines); and both of them require different structures than large units (i.e., ground/planetary armies with non-spaceship/starship combat vehicles). Then you get into "combined arms" operations, where the different types of military units support each other. You literally need to have multiple types of military units because there are things that each does well and others that they do poorly: in military operations, you should try to use the right tool for the job; otherwise, things tend to (often literally) blow up in your face.

Generally speaking, a given pact world military will need at least a spaceship/starship force to interdict worlds/star systems, protect trade vessels, and project military power; a small unit force to (as mentioned) perform reconnaissance/scouting, probably act as boarding forces/counter-boarding forces for the spaceships/starships, and act as a precision strike force on planets/space stations; and a large unit force for large scale planetary/space station assault and/or defense, to include area/resource control/denial and providing secure staging zones for the other forces (such as bases/hospitals/supply depots, factories, shipyards, etc.). They might be under the same military umbrella (a "unified" military), but they will still have their own organization and training requirements because the mission sets are so different.


Considering that major players in the Pact Worlds are at least continent sized governments and that some were involved in wars rather recently its safe to assume that everyone has all military branches in some way, although of course in different sizes and different tactics.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

yeah, i think the NATO example is pretty much what would be going on. all the pact worlds have separate governments. i imagine that the Stewards are probably funded by some tax and that they are run by the pact itself.


Ravingdork wrote:
dot.

what In the Nine Hells does this mean?


The Artificer wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
dot.
what In the Nine Hells does this mean?

Making a comment so you can find the thread later.

Threads you've posted in show up on the forum main page followed by a dot.


thejeff wrote:
The Artificer wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
dot.
what In the Nine Hells does this mean?

Making a comment so you can find the thread later.

Threads you've posted in show up on the forum main page followed by a dot.

Ah ohhkay.. thank you for clearing that up!


I wonder what each pact world’s military might specialize in? The anacites of aballon perhaps at the building of ships and weaponry. While the veskarium contingent is great with “boots on the ground operations”, maybe apostae is phenomenal at stealth missions, while Eox works on the equivalent of wmds.


zauriel56 wrote:
I wonder what each pact world’s military might specialize in? The anacites of aballon perhaps at the building of ships and weaponry. While the veskarium contingent is great with “boots on the ground operations”, maybe apostae is phenomenal at stealth missions, while Eox works on the equivalent of wmds.

While some planets might focus more on a specific area, everyone would be able to do everything. They are simply too large as to ignore one aspect of warfare.


Especially the Veskarium, since they're not actually part of the Pact Worlds, but fought them to a standstill for centuries (off and on) before allying in the face of the Swarm.


Has it been said who we'll be involved with? I'm still nourishing a faint hope that the assumption will be to be part of the Azlanti Empire in a major confrontation with the Swarm, with the Veskarium and the Pact Worlds as worried onlookers. It also has the benefit of having something resembling a unified military structure, most likely.

Ixal wrote:
believable futuristic cities with all that entails (weapon laws, competent law enforcement, etc)

We have very different experiences and ideas of law enforcement both in real life and in sci-fi, I see. :^)


Starfinder Superscriber

The world being invaded...

Spoiler for the AP, possibly:
Is in an unaffiliated independent system in Near Space. It has been toying with becoming a Pact World Protectorate, but never bought the bullet. It trades goods with both the Pact Worlds and the Veskarium and many members of both factions have immigrated to it, even joining their military. They mentioned the name of the system/world at Paizocon, but I can't remember it at the moment. Your commander is a Vesk soldier that left the Veskarium and came to this system specifically because he wanted to keep fighting the swarm.


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pithica42 wrote:

The world being invaded...

** spoiler omitted **

hmmm...

so are you supposed to be Pact Worlds military or this planet's military?

I have a great character concept, but I dunno how it would translate to being non-Pact World


Starfinder Superscriber

You're in this system's military.


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pithica42 wrote:
You're in this system's military.

shucks. oh well.


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Luckmann wrote:

Has it been said who we'll be involved with? I'm still nourishing a faint hope that the assumption will be to be part of the Azlanti Empire in a major confrontation with the Swarm, with the Veskarium and the Pact Worlds as worried onlookers. It also has the benefit of having something resembling a unified military structure, most likely.

Nope, we're fighting for the sci fi equivalent a competent but under equipped small town police force as a huge gang of marauding bikers arrives.

Paizo Employee Developer

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thecursor wrote:
Luckmann wrote:

Has it been said who we'll be involved with? I'm still nourishing a faint hope that the assumption will be to be part of the Azlanti Empire in a major confrontation with the Swarm, with the Veskarium and the Pact Worlds as worried onlookers. It also has the benefit of having something resembling a unified military structure, most likely.

Nope, we're fighting for the sci fi equivalent a competent but under equipped small town police force as a huge gang of marauding bikers arrives.

I like that image!


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Jason Keeley wrote:
thecursor wrote:
Luckmann wrote:

Has it been said who we'll be involved with? I'm still nourishing a faint hope that the assumption will be to be part of the Azlanti Empire in a major confrontation with the Swarm, with the Veskarium and the Pact Worlds as worried onlookers. It also has the benefit of having something resembling a unified military structure, most likely.

Nope, we're fighting for the sci fi equivalent of a competent but under equipped small town police force as a huge gang of marauding bikers arrives.
I like that image!

Please, feel free to describe this AP like that because that's exactly what this adventure feels like lol


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Starfinder Superscriber

Hey there, this is Patrick the author here. The planet that "Fate of the Fifth" takes place on is called "Suskillon" and it is a far-off colony that has been under its own governance for over a century. I imagined Australia while I was writing it, as it has these huge cities but also large tracts of unspoiled wilderness between them. The description of 'marauding bikers' is funny because that makes me think of Mad Max.

I purposefully did not rewatch Starship Troopers while writing, but to be honest I have that movie like laser etched into my brain, so I hope some of the action percolated into this AP for you all and your friends to play in August!


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Paranoid Android wrote:

Hey there, this is Patrick the author here. The planet that "Fate of the Fifth" takes place on is called "Suskillon" and it is a far-off colony that has been under its own governance for over a century. I imagined Australia while I was writing it, as it has these huge cities but also large tracts of unspoiled wilderness between them. The description of 'marauding bikers' is funny because that makes me think of Mad Max.

I purposefully did not rewatch Starship Troopers while writing, but to be honest I have that movie like laser etched into my brain, so I hope some of the action percolated into this AP for you all and your friends to play in August!

Australia IN SPACE MATE!


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Yakman wrote:
Paranoid Android wrote:

Hey there, this is Patrick the author here. The planet that "Fate of the Fifth" takes place on is called "Suskillon" and it is a far-off colony that has been under its own governance for over a century. I imagined Australia while I was writing it, as it has these huge cities but also large tracts of unspoiled wilderness between them. The description of 'marauding bikers' is funny because that makes me think of Mad Max.

I purposefully did not rewatch Starship Troopers while writing, but to be honest I have that movie like laser etched into my brain, so I hope some of the action percolated into this AP for you all and your friends to play in August!

Australia IN SPACE MATE!

This is where I'd put a Immoten Joe gif.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

i was thinking about having a certain character for this AP... now that I know that the characters are supposed to be AUSTRALIAN MATE! i have completely been mind blown. spent a few hours researching Australian military history yesterday.

this is a literal game changer.


Starfinder Superscriber

Now I want to play it even more.


Yakman wrote:
Paranoid Android wrote:

Hey there, this is Patrick the author here. The planet that "Fate of the Fifth" takes place on is called "Suskillon" and it is a far-off colony that has been under its own governance for over a century. I imagined Australia while I was writing it, as it has these huge cities but also large tracts of unspoiled wilderness between them. The description of 'marauding bikers' is funny because that makes me think of Mad Max.

I purposefully did not rewatch Starship Troopers while writing, but to be honest I have that movie like laser etched into my brain, so I hope some of the action percolated into this AP for you all and your friends to play in August!

Australia IN SPACE MATE!

Got to have the entire party named Bruce :-)

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