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Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Working on the GURPS Prime Directive Revision

Jean Sexton writes:

Steve Cole has said for years that he wanted me working on the roleplaying part of our line. As I got more confident in my roles of marketing and proofreader, I slowly had more time free up. Finally I created the Supplement that we'd promised our patient PD20 Modern players. When I did that, I found some errors that predated my time at ADB. I wondered what other problems were lurking in GURPS Prime Directive, the source for all of our RPG books.

Steve told me to look through the book and see what I found. When the list I submitted got longer than he felt comfortable with, he agreed I needed to give the book a nudge. And then the interesting part started.

We fiddled with some text; that needed to be fixed. At some point, academy templates were dropped that were in our 3e book. I wanted to restore them. Doing that meant adding back some skills. Some of our species referenced traits that somehow had been omitted. Those needed to be re-added. With experience and feedback, we realized that our players didn't all want to play Star Fleet characters. That meant adding in some features that might appeal to traders and Orion pirates. In addition, the GM needs to be able to create bad guys for the heroes to defeat.

Another project of mine was to add information that I as a player wanted -- and I have always been fascinated by the Inter-Stellar Consortium. What makes the Pronhoulites different from the Gorns? How do the Rovillians function on starships? What about the Q'Naabians? The first ISC story showed them interacting with other crew members, not holed up in their separate cabin. Those species have been expanded.

So the work progresses and I think that this will come closer to being a stand-alone book. There are references to the GURPS Basic Set, but those are for items that I think aren't necessarily essential. I'm also trying to mark references to traits and skills we didn't include so players and GMs don't go searching for them. The result will be a greatly expanded and enhanced work, worthy of being a new edition.

In the end, I think players and GMs will have a better reference than they had before. We've learned a lot in 10 years; I hope it shows in this book.