A great imbalance in my gaming shelf is redressed.

…Gaming shelf. Heh.  Try gaming bookcases: between my gaming books and my wife’s, the living room is a homage to the 20′ by 20′ room with an orc and a chest.

Anyway, just got my copy of GURPS Low-Tech, thus bringing me fully up to date on the actual print runs of 4th ed.  Really, at some point I should run a game in this system (the problem is that I can think in 3rd ed, but not quite in 4th ed)…

Book of the Week: The Difference Engine.

The Difference Engine was one of the first alt-history/steampunk books that I ever read; and it pretty much gave me a permanent taste for both.  I suspect that the maps help: I love alternate history maps.

And so adieu, GURPS Basic Set: Characters, Fourth Edition.  I have not forgotten why I was thinking about you, never fear.

GURPS Bloody Vorkosigan Saga. *Finally.*

How long has the GURPS community waited for GURPS Vorkosigan Saga? Let me put it this way: the editor started off his acknowledgment by apologizing for the delay. This roleplaying game sourcebook was in production for five years.  There were probably bets made on when, if ever, this book would ever see the light of day.  The only reason why all of this didn’t end in a frontal assault on Steve Jackson Games is that Bujold fans tend to be kind-hearted souls without access to kinetic energy weapons.

…I kid.  This book was a bit of a Jonah; everything that could have gone wrong did go wrong, and after a certain point you have to accept that sometimes that just happens.  And it’s nice to have a copy in hand.  But man, was this a wait.

Moe Lane

OK, this is kind of funny, if you’re a gamer.

There are apparently two R. Borgstroms in the gaming world: there’s Rebecca Borgstrom, who wrote Nobilis*…

…$150?  Excuse me while I get my copy out of the reach of children and into an inert nitrogen atmosphere.

…and then there’s Rolfe Borgstrom, who got mentioned in this article about gaming out Land of the Lost.  The main site (Transitive Property of Gaming) looks interesting, too.  As for the article… true enough, as far as it goes; but you should also try GURPS Dinosaurs & Cadillacs & Dinosaurs: there was also one involving an alien planet, dinosaurs, and cowboys, but the title has slipped my mind.

What? No, actually, I know plenty of women who game. My wife’s a GM, in fact. Why do you ask?

Moe Lane

*Which I personally feel would be just crying out for a d20 version, if only I had any morally justifiable reason to be that nihilistic and cruel.

This was once edgy.

Admittedly, it was edgy when I was eleven.

Centerfold, by J. Geils Band.

One of the funniest things that was in the original GURPS Autoduel was its suggestion that the dystopian future of that world’s 2020s would portray the 1980s as being idyllic (in much the same way that we romanticize both the 1950s and the 1890s).  It’s still funny (nobody gets near-future disaster scenarios wrong like roleplaying games do*), but not because it isn’t increasing true that we do.

Moe Lane

*Which is not the games’ fault, really: if you’re playing in a near-future game, you want it to be different than the current time period, right?  That means “exciting,” and exciting means that something’s probably blown up somewhere.  Or lots of somethings.  Whatever the current worry is, really.

Six Insane Discoveries, and their gaming applications.

Having read this on Cracked, it immediately became obvious that what it was starkly necessary for someone to look at the “6 Insane Discoveries That Science Can’t Explain” and explain them using the tools designed for such things: ie, roleplaying games.

Well, it was obvious to me. This is going to go unapologetic gaming geek now, so I’m giving the rest of you the courtesy of a page break. Continue reading Six Insane Discoveries, and their gaming applications.

GURPS Vorkosigan for April 2009?

Steve Jackson Games is saying precisely that, and it’d be nice to see.  Oh, they’re calling it “The Vorkosigan Saga Sourcebook and RPG,” but that’s so that people who are Lois McMasters Bujold fans first and roleplaying gamers… pretty much not at all… will buy the blessed thing.

If you are not a Bujold fan, or a Vorkosigan series fan, then I suggest that you rectify this error at your earliest possible opportunity.  It’s good space opera in general, but what elevates it to something special would have to be  some of the characters: they’re some of the best-crafted that you’ll ever encounter in science fiction, and Bujold herself has a refreshing willingness to treat her created societies on their own terms, and not necessarily ours.  Plus, she hates idiot plots*.  That’s worth something right there.

Moe Lane

*Defined as “any plot narrative that can only work if nobody ever takes five minutes to ask three or four simple, straightforward questions of anybody else.”  Distressingly common.