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Old 09-02-2019, 05:13 PM   #11
adm
 
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Default Re: GURPS Prime Directive

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Originally Posted by maximara View Post
Hopefully they used the 4e TL scale and explained why they went with the TL they did choose. ;-)
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Originally Posted by Phantasm View Post
Hmm... referencing the GURPS 3e Tech Level progression that went up to 16 rather than the GURPS 4e TL progression which only goes up to 12, with ^ for superscience tech like transporters, warp drive, omniscanners (i.e. tricorders), and force screens.

Did you consider referencing the 4e TL progression?
The TL progression is from their 3E edition, it anchors the tech progression from ADB's version of Trek, keeping it vastly simplifies how they advance tech that cover 200+ years of history.

Being a specific setting, instead of a generic one, such a setup makes sense. After all, if you were building a home brew Trek setting, wouldn't you want a better way to differentiate between the thirteen* different on screen USS Enterprises than TL12^?



* Archers Enterprise, Pike's Enterprises, both from TOS, and Discovery, the TOS Enterprise, the Refitted movie Enterprise, A, B, C, D, E, and J, plus the Tri-engined D, and the JJ-Trek Enterprise.
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Old 09-02-2019, 06:13 PM   #12
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Default Re: GURPS Prime Directive

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Originally Posted by Jean_Sexton View Post
My thoughts were that this is designed to be a standalone book. If someone wants to bring in more GURPS information, that person most likely has the GURPS Basic Set books and already knows if he wants to reference them.

This book isn't meant to replace GURPS Basic Set so there is much more detail in those books that isn't in ours. I also don't include every chart and table that those books have -- just the ones that directly apply to Prime Directive.

EDIT: However, I missed that old 3e reference. I'll change it in the book.

Jean
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Originally Posted by adm View Post
The TL progression is from their 3E edition, it anchors the tech progression from ADB's version of Trek, keeping it vastly simplifies how they advance tech that cover 200+ years of history.

Being a specific setting, instead of a generic one, such a setup makes sense. After all, if you were building a home brew Trek setting, wouldn't you want a better way to differentiate between the thirteen* different on screen USS Enterprises than TL12^?

* Archers Enterprise, Pike's Enterprises, both from TOS, and Discovery, the TOS Enterprise, the Refitted movie Enterprise, A, B, C, D, E, and J, plus the Tri-engined D, and the JJ-Trek Enterprise.
My concern is they really highballed the 3e TL leaving little room for the civilizations more advanced then the Federation - the wiki entry for GURPS Prime Directive goes into a long outline regarding how to lowball Star Trek TL using what was in TOS as well as in the Worlds of the Federation book.

In 3e terms TL(6+3) to TL(7+3) with the transporter at TL14 is reasonable.

In 4e terms so much of Star Trek goes into the superrscience that one can easily put lowball it into the TL(6+3)^ to TL(7+2)^ range with the transtator being a piece of TL6^ tech (per "Piece of the Action" and Worlds of the Federation)

Also there can be a lot of improvement within a TL. One only need to look at the Newcomen engine and the improved version Watt made so see that as they are both TL5. Star Trek could have a safe-tech mindset. Sure they refine their technology but in terms of moving up the TL scale they basically set there.

GURPS tried the TL scale unique to the setting idea with GURPS Lensman. The result was to put it mildly a mess as book forgot the whole "Universal" part of GURPS and tried to (badly) use the TL penalty system on its own Tech Stage system which based on information in the book resulted in total nonsense the moment you tried to relate it back to the GURPS TL system.

Remember a GURPS book should, within reason, be able to "play nice" with other GURPS books. GURPS 3e Supers forgot that and we all know how much a botch up that was.
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Old 09-02-2019, 06:24 PM   #13
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Default Re: GURPS Prime Directive

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...GURPS tried the TL scale unique to the setting idea with GURPS Lensman. The result was to put it mildly a mess as book forgot the whole "Universal" part of GURPS and tried to (badly) use the TL penalty system on its own...
You do make some fair points, to the above quoted text. As I understand it, the Powered By GURPS line is the basic GURPS engine tweaked to a specific setting, not necessarily intended to remain generic.

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My concern is they really highballed the 3e TL leaving little room for the civilizations more advanced then the Federation...
This IS a very good point TL16 essentially goes off the scale, while that likely works for the Orgainians, it does leave a narrow window for groups above the Federation, but below, effectively, a god.
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Old 09-02-2019, 06:28 PM   #14
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Default Re: GURPS Prime Directive

I think that the book is an improvement on the prior edition but not using the 4th edition tech levels a base makes this less useful to me. I think that the 4e tech levels are a solid improvement over 3e.
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Old 09-02-2019, 06:35 PM   #15
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Default Re: GURPS Prime Directive

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You do make some fair points, to the above quoted text. As I understand it, the Powered By GURPS line is the basic GURPS engine tweaked to a specific setting, not necessarily intended to remain generic..
True but "PBG books may contain specific rules that are not backwards-compatible with the rest of GURPS . . . but, of course, these are clearly marked." So if their TL scale goes off into its own little world ala GURPS Lensmen then they have to clearly mark that and as GURPS Lensmen did note what regular TLs (4e TLs not 3e in this case) their funky TL system equates to. Though there is the much easier tack of simply avoiding the extra work and just use the GURPS 4e TL system.

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This IS a very good point TL16 essentially goes off the scale, while that likely works for the Orgainians, it does leave a narrow window for groups above the Federation, but below, effectively, a god.
The Organians are not a good example of 3e's TL16 as their abilities are natural not a product of high TL. iMHO the only solid example of actual TL16 is by Flint is "Requiem for Methuselah" and the Transmuter from "Catspaw"; in 4e both would simply be TL^.

Per the TL3 scale with the exception of the transporter Star Trek would sit very comfortably at TL(6+2) to TL(7+3).
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Old 09-02-2019, 06:55 PM   #16
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Default Re: GURPS Prime Directive

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Originally Posted by Jean_Sexton View Post
Hopefully they used the 4e TL scale and explained why they went with the TL they did choose. ;-) ...

From the book ...

This Tech Level Chart shows the progression of technological development in the Star Fleet Universe. It is exactly the same as the standard GURPS tech level chart for TL0 (Stone Age) through TL6 (the Mechanized Age). At TL7 and above it deviates from the “generic” GURPS tech levels to show the way technology developed in this particular universe. Items in Italics are SFU specific. For example, in this game’s universe, transporter technology is common at TL9, but the standard GURPS definition is TL15 (matter transmission). This is a major strength of the GURPS system; each universe can build its own history.
Face palms and then face faults

GURPS 4e does NOT define transporter technology as TL15. Matter transmission is TL10^ (GURPS Ultra-tech) and would therefore be TL9^ as far as Prime Directive is concerned. Heck, it could be TL7^ in the universe of The Fly (1958)

That is one of the great things about the superscience (^) designation - it can be associated with any TL.

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I think that the book is an improvement on the prior edition but not using the 4th edition tech levels a base makes this less useful to me. I think that the 4e tech levels are a solid improvement over 3e.
I completely agree.

You can have Equivalent TL much higher then what the actual TL of the setting is.

For example, Etheria has manned spaceflight which is "normally" TL9 but in every other aspect it is TL(5+1) and so it is roughly TL(5+1)^ across the board rather then TL(5+1) (spaceflight (5+4)^) Similarly, the Britannica-5 setting has antimatter bombs which are normally TL10. But all the other technology is TL(5+1) and so it is more sensible to go with TL(5+1)^ rather then TL(5+1); (antimatter bombs TL(5+5)).

The 4e TL system is far more robust then the 3e one.
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Old 09-02-2019, 06:57 PM   #17
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Default Re: GURPS Prime Directive

Are phasers still massively underpowered? In the show, getting hit tended to mean total and instant disintegration. The phaser I at 1d Burn is inferior to a 9mm pistol at 2d+2 Pierce. We went to Ultra Tech blasters but I hope the stats have been updated. A phaser on overload can wipe out an entire deck of a starship!
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Old 09-02-2019, 08:28 PM   #18
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Default Re: GURPS Prime Directive

Adm, you forgot about the Enterprise in Star Trek Beyond.
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Old 09-02-2019, 08:45 PM   #19
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Default Re: GURPS Prime Directive

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Originally Posted by David Johansen View Post
Are phasers still massively underpowered? In the show, getting hit tended to mean total and instant disintegration. The phaser I at 1d Burn is inferior to a 9mm pistol at 2d+2 Pierce. We went to Ultra Tech blasters but I hope the stats have been updated. A phaser on overload can wipe out an entire deck of a starship!
Yeah, no. Same old puny phasers that aren't really qualified to heat a cup of coffee.

Also, wow does this book need a page-number edit pass. Within 10 seconds of cracking the PDF I find numerous errors.
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Old 09-02-2019, 09:02 PM   #20
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Default Re: GURPS Prime Directive

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Originally Posted by adm View Post
You do make some fair points, to the above quoted text. As I understand it, the Powered By GURPS line is the basic GURPS engine tweaked to a specific setting, not necessarily intended to remain generic.
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Originally Posted by maximara View Post
True but "PBG books may contain specific rules that are not backwards-compatible with the rest of GURPS . . . but, of course, these are clearly marked." So if their TL scale goes off into its own little world ala GURPS Lensmen then they have to clearly mark that and as GURPS Lensmen did note what regular TLs (4e TLs not 3e in this case) their funky TL system equates to. Though there is the much easier tack of simply avoiding the extra work and just use the GURPS 4e TL system.
Given that they already had a TL based on 3E, rebuilding it to 4E would have been the extra work. Within ADB's Universe, it works just fine. At this point we should likely agree to disagree, we clearly have different views, neither are necessarily wrong, although I will acknowledge that your view is better for 4E compatibility, but then so many tech assumptions in Trek are all over the place that it doesn't really play well with others.

Note: GURPS: Lensmen was a 3E work, its TL system refers to 3E TLs not 4E TLs.


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This IS a very good point TL16 essentially goes off the scale, while that likely works for the Orgainians, it does leave a narrow window for groups above the Federation, but below, effectively, a god.
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Originally Posted by maximara View Post
The Organians are not a good example of 3e's TL16 as their abilities are natural not a product of high TL. iMHO the only solid example of actual TL16 is by Flint is "Requiem for Methuselah" and the Transmuter from "Catspaw"; in 4e both would simply be TL^.

Per the TL3 scale with the exception of the transporter Star Trek would sit very comfortably at TL(6+2) to TL(7+3).
Honestly, we have no idea how the Organians work, they may have built up with a tech base, or be totally biological. Given the abilities shown on screen, they could easily have clouded everyone's minds into believing they were on a primitive agrarian world, rebuilt it as such for visitors, once they stopped using bodies, or something else entirely, hence why I said "Likely works".

Unless I am mistaken, Flint and the Transmutter are very likely outside of ADB's license. In 35 years of interacting in the SFU universe, and having all of the RPG supplements, they have never been referred too.
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