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Old 01-13-2018, 03:49 PM   #1
Blue Ghost
 
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Default GURPS Middle Ages

Will there be an update of the GURPS Middle Ages book at some time?
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Old 01-13-2018, 04:02 PM   #2
Kelly Pedersen
 
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Default Re: GURPS Middle Ages

I'm not an SJ Games employee, I have no special knowledge here, so take this with a grain of salt, but I would guess the answer is "probably not", at least if you're thinking of a single book that updates everything that was in the original GURPS Middle Ages. Those historical books, much as they were largely cool as heck, haven't really made a reappearance in 4th Edition for a reason - they apparently didn't sell all that well, and in the shrunken RPG market of the 21st Century, I don't think SJ Games feels they can make money off them.

Instead, I'd look at material to appear piecemeal - look at the Hot Spots line for locations and general discussion of history, Locations for more generic places that could fit into a medieval setting, Low-Tech for discussions of medieval technology, Martial Arts for more detailed descriptions of medieval fighting styles, Vehicles for medieval transport, and Who's Who for NPCs of the time period.

Notably, Hot Spots: Constantinople already covers the Byzantine/Eastern Roman Empire during a good chunk of the Middle Ages.
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Old 01-13-2018, 07:01 PM   #3
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Default Re: GURPS Middle Ages

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelly Pedersen View Post
I would guess the answer is "probably not", at least if you're thinking of a single book that updates everything that was in the original GURPS Middle Ages.
This, I agree with.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelly Pedersen View Post
Those historical books, much as they were largely cool as heck, haven't really made a reappearance in 4th Edition for a reason - they apparently didn't sell all that well, and in the shrunken RPG market of the 21st Century, I don't think SJ Games feels they can make money off them.
This, not so much. What I'll note are:
  • Middle Ages 1 is not the kind of book that's likely to see a straight revision in 4e. A lot of it is purely factual material which doesn't demand updating, as opposed to rules-heavy books like High Tech or Space. Much of it works as-is.
  • GURPS publications are to a very large extent author-driven. That is, if qualified authors propose something in a very broad range, SJ Games is likely to go for it. I haven't had any trouble with any of the Hot Spots volumes I've yet proposed, but I've only heard of one other author even considering one, which leads me to suspect not that they're not publishing historicals, but rather that nobody's proposing to write them. Mind you, they may be less willing to green-light historicals than before, but I gotta think that there are supply-side issues and nobody with the necessary qualifications is really that interested in writing a Medieval England book right now.
  • The occasional hardcover aside, the general trend with 4e is towards shorter books. A 128-pager isn't in their target page range.

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Originally Posted by Kelly Pedersen View Post
Instead, I'd look at material to appear piecemeal - look at the Hot Spots line for locations and general discussion of history, Locations for more generic places that could fit into a medieval setting, Low-Tech for discussions of medieval technology, Martial Arts for more detailed descriptions of medieval fighting styles, Vehicles for medieval transport, and Who's Who for NPCs of the time period.

Notably, Hot Spots: Constantinople already covers the Byzantine/Eastern Roman Empire during a good chunk of the Middle Ages.
Back to agreeing. Short, focused books. Middle Ages 1, which after all is really GURPS Medieval England is unlikely to see a wholesale revision, but perhaps there'd be a Hot Spots: Medieval London (which would naturally involve some attention to what's happening in the rest of England), a Locations: Carnarvon Castle, some sort of Who's Who for notable historical figures and useful NPCs, and so on.
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Old 01-13-2018, 07:26 PM   #4
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Default Re: GURPS Middle Ages

I'd imagine the main issue would be that the cost of editing and laying out a whole new book—you can't just reuse the old one—would far outweigh any expected sales. And since an individual can convert it to fourth edition GURPS rules fairly simply with GURPS Update, is there really any pressing need for a new edition?
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Old 01-13-2018, 11:50 PM   #5
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Default Re: GURPS Middle Ages

This.

Books that are primarily data are really not worth the effort of reissuing as 4th Edition; the effort should go to new material.
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Old 01-14-2018, 10:01 AM   #6
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This.

Books that are primarily data are really not worth the effort of reissuing as 4th Edition; the effort should go to new material.
Thanks for all the replies. I've got a bunch of Dover Press and Kensington trade paper backs on the era regarding every facet of medieval life in Europe from Charlemagne to pre-Renaissance. But I've always found the GURPS books to be well researched, and when I bought the original softcover Middle Ages book back in the early 90s, I was impressed with the overall information and layout (though it did seem to skew towards England).

I guess in last few years I asked about a second volume, and the answer was that there wasn't going to be one, so I thought there might be a revision of the old one.

I guess the other reason I ask is because I do get a little worried about younger players just playing fantasy era stuff without a little historical context. Call it my inner professor at work.

Also, given all the Osprey books on the period (militaries specifically), I thought there might be an SJGames author who would write a book regarding medieval France, Nordic, Germanic tribes and kingdoms, and all the rest. It's just so rich, and it's where the high profile folklore that forms the basis for things like elves, trolls, goblins and what not come from, that I figured something might be in the offing. Something other than the very well informed GURPS Fantasy Folks or GURPS Dragon books and the like.

Short response; oh well, I thought I'd ask :)

Thanks for the replies.
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Old 01-14-2018, 10:04 AM   #7
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Default Re: GURPS Middle Ages

Sounds like Blue Ghost might be exactly the person to propose an outline for a GURPS Medieval Europe book for W23...
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Old 01-14-2018, 11:41 AM   #8
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Default Re: GURPS Middle Ages

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Sounds like Blue Ghost might be exactly the person to propose an outline for a GURPS Medieval Europe book for W23...
Agreed, but that might be a bit too broad for the current market. Perhaps a GURPS Hot Spots: Holy Roman Empire focusing on the medieval years could sell. Just my 5¢ worth. :)
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Old 01-14-2018, 03:04 PM   #9
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Default Re: GURPS Middle Ages

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Will there be an update of the GURPS Middle Ages book at some time?
Good Question. Maybe we could move beyond England this time.

Don't get me wrong, both the real Medieval England and "Merrie England" are great to game in. But it's time that France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Scotland, Wales, Cornwall, Ireland, Denmark, Flanders, Scandinavia, Iceland, Greenland, Hungary, Poland, the Hausa, Moscovy, Byzantium, and Outremare, got some love too.
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Old 01-14-2018, 03:39 PM   #10
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My two cents:

Migration Era Europe up to or including Charlemagne in one book and then Charlemagne (or just after depending on the first book's scope) through the viking period would be awesome [Edit: or all that time in one book]. Great potential in those eras for everything from realistic military and/or political campaigns to cinematic and fantasy campaigns.

The world was less populated/more soread out, polities were smaller, politics was very personal, and even military engagements tended to involve less people (therefore the PCs could have a realistically larger impact).
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