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Old 03-25-2020, 07:17 AM   #5
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Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: traveller
Default Re: GURPS Shadowgun [Brainstorm]

It's probably time to dig back through Kenneth Hite's Suppressed Transmission archives, especially the ones that were never collected into books.

Off the top of my head, I'd suggest dating the change to the Anglo-Zulu War (1879)/First Boer War (1880-1881)/Ghost Dance movement (1890) period, with maybe a follow-up wave tied to the Boxer Rebellion (1899-1901)/Second Boer War (1899-1902). The idea is that indigenous struggles against colonialism were prompted and aided by the return of magic, disrupting the course of subsequent history. The campaign can be notionally set in c. 1930, but with technology and politics that more closely resemble 1890.

A key feature would be "glitch" magic, which would make automatic weapons and remote/timed fuses unreliable. This might be more a field effect of magic use in general, rather than a specific spell. If you can't be sure your grenades and artillery shells won't explode in your hand, your will be reluctant to use them. If machineguns and assault rifles jam every dozen or so rounds, you might stick with revolvers and lever/bolt/pump action firearms instead. This is more to maintain the "wild west" feel against technological development, but it could also help balance magic vs. tech.
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