As I’ve noted, science-fiction can offer a lot of variety to the gaming table. The type of campaign can vary, and that means people can sort out exactly how they’d like the game to go for them. There can be moral questions that play themselves out. A desire to foreground specific technology. Inter-species contact, i.e. “You’ve discovered a sentient species previously unknown, how do you proceed?” All of these and more are completely legitimate options for a game.
In Hunt the Wicked, the game focuses on characters who may have carte blanche to take paths that would otherwise be largely immoral. A character could eschew a rigid moral code in favor of a purely personal one that may, or may not, be acceptable to other people. While this isn’t something that is strictly applicable to science-fiction, how the conflicts resolve may be strongly guided by the genre. For example, a character may cause significant injury to others, but if there is advanced healing technology the significance of this may be very different from in our world. The action for causing harm may be illegal, but the gravity of the injury may be viewed altogether differently.
The need for diplomacy may take center stage and completely cast aside any kind of violent confrontation. Imagine not knowing the scope of an entire species capacity upon meeting a member from it. There’s a very interesting possibilities here. Are the players diplomats? Soldiers? Refugees? Criminals? A campaign could go in many directions.
Science-fiction has great options available to players, but is much more than simply “fast space ships” and far-off planets”. Being heroic in such a setting will mean different things to different people. The possibilities are as extensive as people’s imagination, but more on that in a future post.