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[GZG][FH] Planet types (was Re: Locations of Stars)

From: Laserlight <laserlight@c...>
Date: Sat, 28 Nov 1998 12:41:27 -0500
Subject: [GZG][FH] Planet types (was Re: Locations of Stars)

  Several people have mentioned "planet types" while discussing the
level for the Official History of the Future(tm).  I thought I'd pitch
out and then expend all thrust on evasive maneuvering 8) :
  John Barnes, in the March 1990 Analog, has an article on "How to Build
Future".  Among other things, he postulates that there are just a few
of planets:

1.     Wet Mars (smaller and cooler than Earth, a scattering of
2.     Utah (big, dry, huge mountains, livable seacoasts);
3.     Cold Indonesia (cooler than Earth, with small continents and
islands, habitable in the tropics and lower temperate zones);
4.     Odd ones that don't fit a category.

Now, he got these from random number generation across a spreadsheet for
the "six randomizing factors that went into each planet" (and if anyone
knows what he's talking about, especially parameters and how to
how many resource areas there are, e-mail me) so there's no reason that
have to stick with those types he came up with.  We might, however,
on a few basic planet types that are habitable without terraforming. 
that I am not suggesting "a jungle planet"--any real habitable planet is
going to have a range of climates.  Nor am I trying to limit
you want a weird planet, design it.  I just don't feel that every single
planet has to be totally different from every other one; and I don't
to have to design from scratch every time just to have a feel for what
   (Compare: "You're entering a star system.  In the habitable zone
is a (roll one die) Large Indonesia type planet" versus "In the
zone there, how about design a Kra'Vak flotilla for me while I
design the planet you're landing on?")
   There are only a few basic climates and a few basic terrain types so
shouldn't be hard to design five or so classes of world ("geotypes"?)
will guarantee every combination is readily available.

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