If you’re still recovering from the excesses of Christmas Day and happen to be browsing the planetary internetwork on your new hand comp (Computer-1 skill required) then welcome! I hope your preferred present-giving deity has looked favourably upon you and you are looking to enhance your gaming portfolio.
I’m steadily catching up with various posts and reviews and I’ve had a copy of ’21 Vehicles’ by Gypsy Knights Games ready to review for a while. So, lets dive in and check it out…
21 Vehicles contains a number of ready-to-use vehicles in Mongoose Traveller format, that the referee can insert or use in any adventure. The book is 38 pages in length and can be downloaded from Drivethru RPG for $4.99 or you can order a softcover version with the PDF included, for $11.99. Though there have been other books in the ’21…’ series by Gypsy Knights Games, this is the first in the ’21 Vehicles’ series of which I understand there are more planned. Though the background is the Clement Sector ATU, the book can be used in any other Mongoose Traveller setting as the vehicles are designed using ‘Supplement 5-6 The Vehicle Handbook’.
The book is split into two parts – civilian vehicles and military vehicles with a 10 / 13 split in numbers of vehicles. I know this isn’t 21, but who’s counting? Each of these sections are further split into ‘Gravity’, ‘Ground’ and ‘Aircraft’. There is a decent variety of types presented, from anti-grav bikes, replacements for air-rafts, utility vehicles, hover tanks, hypersonic aircraft and personnel carriers. Each type is presented with a colour illustration by either Ian Stead or Bradley Warnes. Both illustrators have quite distinct styles, Ian a utilitarian with functional lines and detail. Bradley has a more elaborate style that is used to provide a number of additional full-page scenes throughout the book. Both styles complement each other and are of a high quality throughout the book.
Each vehicle has at least a single page detailing what it looks like, its statistics and a short background about the vehicle. I’ve got a couple of favourites; the GUV/S Type 3 Ships Utility Vehicle, which was designed to be more flexible that the more common air/raft and the Cossack Infantry Carrier Vehicle, both of which you could quite easily see as part of the player-characters standard equipment in their explorations.
It’s a high quality book, I think the only below-average element on the overall package is the 4WD ground vehicle could have done with a bit more detail on the illustration. It’s only noticeable because all the others are so good! You also have an appendix on the last page detailing Hypersonic aircraft, which helps provide a bit more context for one of the civilian vehicles presented.
For the next book in the series, personally I’d like to see some sort of tracked APC (that is operable in the snow), perhaps a TL7-8 turboprop aircraft (that I used in my Amber Zone adventure ‘Ice Cold on Alexandria’) and some sort of variant on the C-130 Hercules aircraft. These are all vehicles that I could use for adventuring parties to help them get around a world.
21 Vehicles is a useful book; a very promising start to which I hope to see many more in the series. I’d like to thank John Watts of Gypsy Knights Games for giving me the opportunity to review a copy of the book.