Every Dungeon Fantasy game needs a Town, and the Hidden Suns campaign is no different. The characters need a safe haven to rest and recover in between adventures, to resupply, and to find out about new opportunities.
The Wanderer is a capital starship (more of a mobile space station) roughly two miles long and half a mile high and wide. It vaguely resembles kasathan design, especially with a rotating ring surrounding the ship in what appears to be a magnetic field lock at the stern, but any kasatha can tell at a glance that it was definitively not built with their technology. Helmed by the mysterious Captain, it roams the five core systems of the Hidden Suns nebula and serves as a staging point for expeditions into the area.
The Captain arrived to the nebula in the early years after the discovery of the Vertices. At first, his ship was often mistaken by other explorers for yet another mystery of the Hidden Suns, due to its unusual design and avoiding contact with other visitors while silenty drifting at the edges of the solar systems. Eventually, contact was made, and the Wanderer gradually opened up its hangar bays to more and more explorers seeking repairs and respite from the nebula’s dangers. Although aloof, the Captain foresaw the cooperation with other explorers would further his own inscrutable goals, so he starting allowing them to set up long-term bases of operation on his vessel. With time, it practically turned into a typical starbase, with a multitude of services for the coming and going visitors.
Originally an immense battleship, the Wanderer already had a lot of vacant hangar space, much of which is now repurposed for habitation. Indeed, the upper decks now comprise a series of large open spaces under the ship’s armored hull. Some resemble shanty towns of containers stacked atop one another while others are little different from domed habitats containing a couple city blocks. Some even go so far as to simulate day/night cycles using huge holovid screens built into the ceilings.
The aft section contains most of the ship’s critical infrastructure – power plants, engines, shield generators etc. With rare exceptions, they are closed off to the “public” and are tended to by miniature maintenance bots ubiquitous throughout the vessel. An artificial gravity plane extends thoughout the horizontal midsection, surrounded on both sides by decks containig life support systems and various non-critical infrastructure. The gravity plane is usually crossed with turbolifts which are constructed in such a way to make the experience as comfortable as possible, yet first-time visitors sometimes lose their lunch anyway.
The lower decks contain hangars, vehicle maintenance bays, warehouses and workshops. It is here that the visiting, smaller spaceships dock and where intrepid explorers set off on their expeditions.
The Wanderer is a safe haven in a sea of danger. Any and all are welcome aboard as long as they behave themselves. Smaller scuffles are tolerated, but as soon as it gets serious the residents themselves rise to take care of the problem, most of them being either active or retired adventurers. Surviving offenders find themselves exiled from the ship and barred from returning. There have been a few occasions where hostile forces attempted attacking the vessel but all of them ended in just a spectacular display of the Wanderer’s exotic beam weapons, the attackers reduced to space dust having failed to dent its shields.
Visitors can find all manner of amenities aboard. Recuperation and and entertainment opportunities are abundant, ranging from plain to exotic. Most space, exploration, adventuring and combat gear is readily available at decent prices while the rest can be special ordered for delivery from Absalom. Indeed, even if the Hidden suns nebula is by no means a well known hotspot, there is more than enough explorers coming and going to have inspired a budding industry catering to them.
The vessel is also frequented by scholars, scientists and corporate types looking for hired help. Such individuals count to find the personell they require among those recuperating from their latest expedition, and indeed, for many adventurers that is a convenient way of finding new opportunities for profit. Those who prefer to explore the Hidden Suns on thier own incentive have access to a wealth of rumors about lost treasures of the nebula, and indeed many of those striking it rich embarked on their journeys based on exactly such information.