In Classic Traveller are UPPs solely a metagame construct, or would they be something characters are aware of? Both Personality and Planetary, I mean.

On the Personality side I imagine characters might be resistant to reduction to a hex string, but I also know that there are few organizations as fervent about classifying people as the services--so perhaps UPPs are widely-referenced by characters?

On the Planetary side it seems perfectly logical that UPPs would be databased in a navigation computer and a navigator would be good at on-sighting an unknown planet: "hey, guys, we're diverting to a C423210, so grab your cold gear."


Classic Traveller rules imply strongly that UPPs and skill ratings are publicly available data about a person. NPCs applying for a job presented their UPP and skills to the players for evaluation, etc.

So I would say that a character would be aware of his or her UPP and skill ratings, and might even throw around statements like, "You don't get to be Pilot-3 without knowing a thing or two about gravity slingshots."

Planetary Profiles are almost certainly part of a Starship's Library Data about a planet, though it's easy to imagine the ship's computer converting that UPP into a more detailed explanation. Here again, the original Traveller rules implied that UPP data is likely to be incomplete, subjective or just plain wrong about a world. One can imagine the ISS survey crews updating a world's UPP record with a code that denotes "mostly harmless".

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  • \$\begingroup\$ In re NPCs: are you referencing Employees and Hirelings on p.27 of book 3? I read that as conversation between player and referee (metagame). I'm not trying to nit-pick--just want to know if there's something I'm missing. \$\endgroup\$ – nitsua60 Aug 23 '15 at 21:53
  • \$\begingroup\$ As I remember it, Classic Traveller includes a number of blank forms with spaces for UPPs, and they're worded and titled in ways that suggest they have an in-universe existence. Remember that you can declare anything IYTU, though. \$\endgroup\$ – GMJoe Aug 24 '15 at 0:29
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    \$\begingroup\$ @GMJoe nice recall: TAS Form 2, Personal Data and History (CT Book 1 p.28) looks pretty-much like any other system's character sheet--pretty meta, that is--until at the bottom you see "Warning: Information regarding an individual's psionic ability is confidential, and may not be released without his or her consent." Argues in-game use of that portion of TAS Form 2, bringing along with it earlier info including UPP. +1 to you, if I could. \$\endgroup\$ – nitsua60 Aug 24 '15 at 1:21

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