Sunday, June 3, 2012

Temporary Aid Reclamation and Detention Shelter (TARDS)

In the vastness of human space there are many worlds that require operations far from the immediate shelter of a colony habitat or even a vehicle. Resource mining, agriculture, even the occasional xeno-archaeology site sometimes require the presence of an emergency shelter capable of weather the most severe conditions and and sustaining life through adverse conditions. For this purpose there is the TARDS.

Officially designated the Temporary Aid Reclamation and Detention Shelter, these free-standing, self-contained facilities offer a number of features allowing them to fulfill many needs on developing and less developed worlds. Each unit is constructed from a nearly indestructible material that can weather meteorite strikes, dust storms, radiation, corrosive atmosphere and a host of other conditions found on any number of words. TARDS units are self-powered and possess life support and waste/water reclamation systems that can keep an occupant alive for weeks. Communications are maintained with tight beam transmitters along with a transponder that sends out a beacon for emergencies. The comms systems of a TARDS can also be used to establish a remote data link for acquisition of information, filing reports, and even remote control of vehicles, robots, and drones. 

In addition to the normal emergency shelter facilities, TARDS units can also be used a temporary detention cells for the holding of criminals or even hostile life forms until proper facilities or disposal (usually in the case of hostile life forms) can be made available. The bio-systems in a TARDS can also be used to hold samples for later collection by field teams. 

TARDS units are all constructed in a very recognizable blue color with a prominent white cross across the door. External controls, access ports, and entry keys are all protected behind armored panels door to one side of the door. External access to hydration, emergency rations and data link facilities can be achieved through these external panels as well, provided proper security information can be provided. 


The TARDS is actually two bits from Combat Wombat. The main part is now available through Combat Wombat as the Scifi Vestibule. The other part in the back, forming the ventilation unit, is the upper strut piece from the landing gear on the Bullfrog Lander. I received the pieces as part of a collection of spare bits and pieces that Scotty sent me to play with. They are based on a one-inch metal disk that I have several of laying about. I textured the based by covering it in super glue and dipping it in fine grit.

I have three of these made and figure they will fit any number of roles in my games. I can see them being used as objectives in many ways from searches, to points where players can access remote systems, lock up captives or even seek shelter and protection from alien creatures. If anything, they can provide some interesting character to collections of terrain.


  1. Great idea and're percolating again, Eli!

  2. Looks great, an unfortunate acronym, but looks great!

  3. Yes, in my universe they have been granted the even less flattering nickname of "Turdis" due to their function as a lavatory facility.


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