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Despatches from the Virtual 27 September 2005

Posted by Dr Moose in Uncategorized.

Category: Role-Playing Games.

Not, the pale imitation of the computer sort, for those of you who have been drawn into believing that the so-called role-playing games of computer gaming are the only type, but the proper stuff – sometimes described as “pen and paper” role-playing, Or as certain advertisers might say “the original and best.” It has been too long. However, there’s a lot going on to report.

I’m currently a very happy Moose for a number of reasons. Firstly I received today my CD-Rom copy of the entire MegaTraveller Canon, fresh from the US. As a system Traveller (Science Fiction Role-playing in the far future has a long and on-going history, having even managed to recover from a mis-guided attempt to freshen it up by killing it (if you don’t know, just trust me and don’t say “Virus”) and the subsequent collapse of the production company (Games Designers’ Workshop) and even a rather bug-ridden 4th edition. “Classic” Traveller, the original incarnation of 1977 is now just about completely re-printed and the second edition MegaTraveller is what I’ve just received on CD-Rom to supplement my not-quite complete paper-based copies. I really must get around to playing it again some time. Maybe I’ll run a session at Continuum 2006 – although the 5th edition of Traveller will have to wait a little longer as it’s not due out until June 2007!

I suppose I must be just an imagination junkie – which makes it slightly ironic that I so often flounder for the way to go ahead in the real world. Then again here it isn’t a game, but deadly earnest. And anyway I often have to remind myself that the expectations I set in the RW are totally UNrealstic – but maybe more on that anon.

I’m also happy in the RPG world because my articles for Tradetalk are finally in the editing/peer review stage and due to be published soon. Hurrah! Of course, I’d like some money for them – but this is fan publishing, more reality in the way that the RPG sector works. I’ll settle for the name in print and the chance that the stuff might catch enough attention to become “official” in Glorantha somehow. But I won’t be holding my breath. It will be enough for me if the few who do buy and read it enjoy it.

Tradetalk and my work on Carreterre provides a healthy link to the next games-related thought, since the editor, who has impeccable qualifications in the field (and, unfortunately a “hacked” website), is none other than a fellow contributor to the shared world project that is Gwenthia. This project is growing by the month, proving highly enjoyable and now runs across one FTP site (complete with a PDF document), one wiki and plenty of discussion at The Tavern. A couple of weeks back was our first “Gwenthia Summit”, a meeting of writer/designer/artists to discuss the ways ahead and how our individual contributions fitted into the whole. (It’s a little odd meeting people for the first time when you’ve had regular Internet Relay Chat for months but never ever met outside of virtual reality – which would take us back to computer-based excuses for RPGs). How very cyclic!

I wish the hobby were more popular, but at least now I’m no longer having to defend the use of my God-given imagination against the wildly inaccurate and often slightly rabid attacks of some of my co-religionists…

And in case you are thinking I need to get out more, well I only game once a month and drink too much with other like-minded folks once every couple of months, so if you’re anyway near ME19four then I’m open to offers. If, of course, GLW and LM will let me!

But now I must return to the Real World, or at least not these ones…



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