This campaign takes place in GDW's Space:1889 universe, a
Victorian Science Fiction genre. This is a Mars of canals, obsequious and inscrutable natives, lost
arts and technologies, hidden treasures, and liftwood.
Liftwood is among the most unique of Martian products. For reason science has not yet determined, it
is lighter than air, allowing one to build flying vessels.
These are the adventures of the crew of the SS High Rhodes, a liftwood ship (sky
galleon) privateer operating under the British flag from their Martian Crown Colony of Syrtis
In late 1888, a South African gentleman of liesure, Comander Pieter Koeniggard, RN ret'd.
pulled some strings and got himself issued Lettres of Marque, then being issued by the Crown Colony to
reinforce its efforts to counter the growing aggression of the Oenotrian Empire to the south. He
gathered up a Martian crew to handle the vessel, human gunners and marines, and went off
Doktor Georg Goebbels, German. Scientist, Diplomat
After a few brief adventures near the Crown Regency, Captain Keoniggard developed the idea of taking
the High Rhodes around Mars, since such a thing had not apparently been done by an English (or any
Terran) vessel. The Morning Telegraph won a bidding war to send a reporter aboard the
However, on their second stop, Captain Koeniggard was killed by a Martian bullet while defeating the
base of the Red Fly, a notorious cloud pirate vessel they had been tracking. During the course
of the adventure, the High Rhodes had been grounded in the mountains, and was repaired to bare
air-worthiness using supplies found in the pirates' mountain base.
The first officer brought the High Rhodes back to Syrtis Major. After some consultation
between South Africa and Mars (Syrtis Major to the British heliograph station over Mars to the British
heliograph station over Earth to London to South Africa by telegraph to the Koennigard's ranch and
back takes a while each way), Koeniggard's parents (his heirs) let 1st Officer Barkley take command of
the High Rhodes and continue to operate it for the family.
While the High Rhodes was in dock for repairs, Dr. Goebbels and Bayswater convinced several other
members of the party to ask Yaargoon to take them to meet his people, the Qeln riders of Mars. A
Terran adventurer by the name of Thomas Kennedy was hired to equip
and guide the group.