First off, an apology in that this is going to be a bit of a self-indulgent blog post. When I started writing this blog 10 years ago, it was to sort of chronicle a resurgent interest in GDW’s Classic Traveller, which I had been kicking around for a few years. Having decided to do something about it, little did I realise where this adventure would take me. I have made friends around the world who share a similar interest and their own journeys in gaming. Some of these have gone on to set up publishing companies, fulfilling their own aims.
From writing short reviews and features, I’ve now reviewed what must be more than a hundred books and products from a number of publishers. In addition there have been some nostalgic looks back and system conversions. Its also motivated me to invest in tracking down some difficult to find products, having first read about them nearly forty years ago.
I don’t get nearly as much time as I would like to write articles and reviews but because it’s something I enjoy, I do what I can. It provides a much needed ’escape’ from real life and creative outlet which I don’t get otherwise, needed all the more since COVID-19. To all those people (many who I consider friends) I would like to say ’thank you’ for all the books and PDFs you have sent me over the years. This blog would be much diminished without your support.
If I was to pick a couple of ‘best moments’ from the past ten years, I would have to say it was being asked by John Watts of Independence Games (as was Gypsy Knights Games) back in 2012 to produce some artwork for their new setting. The first part of this became the cover for the ‘Clement Sector’ core setting book, the second became the initial designs and images of the ‘Rucker-class Merchant Starship’. The Rucker is now seen in many Independence Games products, thanks to the hugely talented Ian Stead. I have also been able to get other artwork published, along with contributing to the development of a number of publications by different publishers, which has fulfilled some personal aims.
Though I don’t get much opportunity to do artwork as I used to do, as I mentioned before much of my creative output is now in writing and I have been working on a little project which has finally come to fruition. Today marks the launch of ‘Quantum Sorcery’, released through Stellagama Publishing. Quantum Sorcery is the Fantasy RPG equivalent of the SF RPG one-sheet RPG rules ‘Cepheus Quantum’ also published by Stellagama. I’ve been kicking around ideas for a quick-start set of rules for a fantasy version of the Classic Traveller books for a number of years and when the Sword of Cepheus was released back in February 2020, I saw an opportunity to use them as the basis for some one-sheet RPG rules. Late last / early this year I got in touch with Stellagama’s Omer Golan-Joel to see if he would be interested in my draft and would want to release it under the Stellagama name. Omer said yes – so over the following weeks with some useful feedback, I refined the rules into a working set of rules. I’d managed to get the rules into two sheets (four sides) but for the final copy Omer has worked his editing magic and condensed the rules into a single sheet of paper, double-sided. The first side details how to create a character, equipment, combat. The second side provides a magic system, a treasure generator and a collection of nasties for a referee to throw at a party in their adventure. The game is designed as something you can quickly pick up and play in an evening, with the emphasis on fun and adventure. Therefore, depending on your needs, you have within Cepheus Engine from Stellagama three sets of rules for playing fantasy adventures, depending on how complex or quickly you want to get started. Quantum Sorcery is there for quick start single evenings play, Barbaric! for slightly more in-depth games along the same lines as the ‘Conan’ films of ‘high adventure’. Finally, for longer games or campaigns with more detail (but a still easy to use system), you have The Sword of Cepheus.
I hope its something that you’ll enjoy using and I would like to thank Omer Golan-Joel listening to my ideas and for getting my draft into the final ‘production’ copy that you can now download for free, from Drivethru RPG. If you have any feedback, please let me know via the comments section below. Both A4 and US Letter formats are available in the download.
So what now for the blog? At the moment, I don’t envisage much change. I’ve still got plenty of material for reviews, a few Laserburn scenario’s and a feature to write and some other stuff I want to put together. I would like to continue the publishing side of things, so we’ll have to see where that takes me.
In the meantime, *thank you* to all of the approx 26,000 visitors who have provided over 68,000 page views over the past ten years – I hope you have enjoyed my musings on Classic Traveller and Cepheus Engine, here’s to many more!