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Old 10-27-2017, 06:09 AM   #31
Randyman
 
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Default Re: Fantasy Games Unlimted: Space Opera

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Originally Posted by Randyman View Post
IIRC, I read a designers notes-type article which said that the "kitchen sink" aspect was an intentional design decision - the idea of a given game campaign using everything was not considered.
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What setting are you talking about being salvagable then?
I see I was unclear. The "kitchen sink" aspect from the article I recall reading referred to the game mechanics and subsystems thereof. Until it was mentioned in this thread, I never noticed similar incompatibilities in the setting. And I still think I could use Mekton Zeta to handle the setting as-(roughly)is.

I would also love to discuss what someone thinks are irreconcilable differences in the setting, because I might still be missing what someone else is seeing more clearly.
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Old 10-27-2017, 12:15 PM   #32
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Default Re: Fantasy Games Unlimted: Space Opera

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Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
It's possible that it was from the game, but certainly not by my copy. I'm not sure which printing it was since I lost the box a long while ago but the books are both 1980, with a cover by Jeff Dee for Vol.1 and a Gene Day cover for Vol. 2.

A fuller explanation of character creation is as follows:

Select one of 6 character classes: Armsman; Tech; Scientist: Research; Scientist: Medical; Scientist: Engineering; or Astronaut.
Given the setting, Psion, Free Trader, Scholar(covering many professional fields from anthropologist, to Bureaucrats, to clergy/chaplins), Diplomats, Wanderer (covering petty grifters, entertains, and other demimondaines), and Dilettante, classes would also make sense.

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Receive DM (dice modifiers) according to your character class to apply to the 1d100 rolls for specified Personal Characteristics, i.e. if the DM doesn't list a particular characteristic for your character class, you can't use the DM to raise that roll. E.G., an Armsman gets +40 DM to apply between Physique; Strength; Constitution; Agility; Bravery and Leadership.
Not a bad mechanic. It keeps the would be Barbarian hero from having a PC with 10s in St, Dx, and Con.

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Roll 1d100 for each of your Personal Characteristics: Physique; Strength; Constitution; Agility; Dexterity; Empathy; Intelligence; Psionics; Intuition; Bravery; Leadership; GTA (General Technical Aptitude); MechA (Mechanical Aptitude); and ElecA (Electronics Aptitude).
Fewer stats would be good.

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Convert your d100 roll (plus any DM) into a PC Score ranging from 01-19 by consulting the chart (Vol.1, p.7).

Roll 1d20 three times to determine: Planetary Gravity Field; Planetary Atmosphere; and Planetary Climate for your Planet of Birth.

Select your character race (species). You must meet the minimum PC Scores of that race and your Planet of Birth has to be an allowed type of home planet for your race. E.G., to play a feline you must have the following PC Scores: Strength 11+; Constitution 11+; Agility 16+; Dexterity 13+; and Intelligence 11+, and your home world must be of Types 1-14. If you also have one of GTA 13+; MechA 13+; or ElecA 13+, you are a MekPurr; otherwise, you are an Avatar.

As an optional rule, to make psionics more prominent in a campaign, if the psionics roll was 96-100, Humans, Feline Avatars and Transhumans could apply up to 15 points from their DM to Psionics (giving a PC score of 19 if your roll was 100), other races could apply up to 10 points from their DM to Psionics (giving a PC score of 18). As a side note, when converting the 1d100 roll to a PC score, if the roll required for a score exceeded 100, it was an absolute number and not a range. For example, to have a PC score of 17 required a roll of 105, 18 required 110, and 19 required 115 in Psionics. Using 10 points from your DM to raise your roll of 96 to 106, gets you a PC score of 17, not 18 because it isn't a range, so spending more than 9 points in this case is pointless, use it to help a roll where it'll do some good.
I can see why rolling up characters could take up a whole evening.

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Rupert may simply misremember the RAW, but he did say he felt the rules invited hacking, so it might be a house rule on his part. In either case, what I've just paraphrased are the rules as they appear in the copy of the printing of the books right in front of me.
The rules seem less to invite hacking than simply ordaining the same.
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Old 10-27-2017, 01:48 PM   #33
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Default Re: Fantasy Games Unlimted: Space Opera

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Originally Posted by Astromancer View Post
Given the setting, Psion, Free Trader, Scholar(covering many professional fields from anthropologist, to Bureaucrats, to clergy/chaplins), Diplomats, Wanderer (covering petty grifters, entertains, and other demimondaines), and Dilettante, classes would also make sense.

.
The "classes" listed were only broad classifications of heroes. After picking one of those and fixing your Attributes you went to work on your Career next. Traders, several kinds of Scientists, Doctors, Diplomats and Bureaucrats were just some of the careers available. There were (at least) Scouts, Mercenaries, Army, Patrol guys and spies too.

Then after you had Class and Career you did your Skills and then you mustered out of your original service, got your $ and went shopping!
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Old 10-28-2017, 05:09 PM   #34
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Default Re: Fantasy Games Unlimted: Space Opera

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Both. It was beyond clunky. It was, from any rational point of view, damn near unplayable.

Fortunately, when I picked it up early in high school I wasn't approaching it from a rational point of view. It was a glorious bricolage of every pre-cyberpunk outer space sci-fi trope you can imagine (Star Wars, Star Trek, Starship Troopers, space cops, space spies, cat-aliens, dog-aliens, space merchants, all the major player of WWII and the Cold War in space, etc.), with something for everybody as long as you didn't pay attention to how the individual bits and pieces made no sense when you put them all together. It's what I played for years until switching to GURPS.

I still have my collection of Space Opera books in the proverbial box up in the attic. I'll have to look over it again some time and see what useful things I might pull out of it.
There are many Traveller elements in the mechanics...

but also many non-traveller elements.

Ship combat feels pretty much like Star Trek.

It's playable, but only just barely so. But the ideas! Oh so many ideas crammed into the nooks and crannies.
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Old 10-28-2017, 05:38 PM   #35
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Default Re: Fantasy Games Unlimted: Space Opera

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There are many Traveller elements in the mechanics...

but also many non-traveller elements.

Ship combat feels pretty much like Star Trek.

.
That's an odd conclusion. My college roommate said it looked a lot like naval battleship combat games he'd played. It was a lot like exchanges of indirect fire with you having to figure out what percentage of the salvo had hit.

If anyone wonders about the scale it was 5 minute turns with speeds in light seconds per turn and point blank range for combat being 25 light-seconds with max ranges over 1000. A fleet trying to attack Earth could end up taking enfilading fire from Mars.
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Old 10-28-2017, 10:55 PM   #36
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Default Re: Fantasy Games Unlimted: Space Opera

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That's an odd conclusion. My college roommate said it looked a lot like naval battleship combat games he'd played. It was a lot like exchanges of indirect fire with you having to figure out what percentage of the salvo had hit.

If anyone wonders about the scale it was 5 minute turns with speeds in light seconds per turn and point blank range for combat being 25 light-seconds with max ranges over 1000. A fleet trying to attack Earth could end up taking enfilading fire from Mars.
The weapons are pastiched names for phasers and photons. The drives are likewise.

FTL sensors and no need to worry about dilation. No newtonian vectors, per se; your speed and direction is readily changed, much like Star Trek.

The ranges are wrong in absolute terms, but the speed vs attack distance isn't.
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Old 10-29-2017, 05:37 AM   #37
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Default Re: Fantasy Games Unlimted: Space Opera

I'm not sure that the "Nova Gun" can be considered a rebadged "Phaser". Nor is a "StarTorpedo" an especially obvious ripoff of "Photon Torpedo". On top of that, nova guns didn't really work like ST phasers at all. Startorps homed, and over really long ranges, and weren't total fight finishers the way photon torpedoes were presented in Trek. Also, Space Opera's screens+armour defenses didn't work like Star Trek's excepting in that shields could fail if hammered on for long enough (and unless the ship was sm,all and the attacker very powerful, it took a long time to force a ship's shields down in Space Opera)

Oh, and TISA drives don't work like impulse engines at all, and FTL certainly wasn't like ST's warp.
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Old 10-29-2017, 03:01 PM   #38
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Default Re: Fantasy Games Unlimted: Space Opera

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I'm not sure that the "Nova Gun" can be considered a rebadged "Phaser". Nor is a "StarTorpedo" an especially obvious ripoff of "Photon Torpedo". On top of that, nova guns didn't really work like ST phasers at all. Startorps homed, and over really long ranges, and weren't total fight finishers the way photon torpedoes were presented in Trek. Also, Space Opera's screens+armour defenses didn't work like Star Trek's excepting in that shields could fail if hammered on for long enough (and unless the ship was sm,all and the attacker very powerful, it took a long time to force a ship's shields down in Space Opera)

Oh, and TISA drives don't work like impulse engines at all, and FTL certainly wasn't like ST's warp.
You're basing upon TNG and later. TNG didn't exist at the time.

At the time, Photons were not presented that way, because in TOS, we hardly see them used, and not as total finishers in the first two movies, either.

The beams were a generic FTL energy beam - the same interpretation that Steve Cole and Lou Zocchi & Michael Kurtic came to in their Star Trek board games.

The torpedoes were STL homers - exactly what we see them as in TMP and TWOK. Potent, but not insta-kills. In the show, however, they're about as effective as phasers, but are still projectiles.

Hmmm... awful lot like they are in FGU's Starships & Spacemen... Which I have on very good authority (Dr. Leonard Kanterman) was intended to be a star trek license, but which FGU couldn't afford a license for, so renamed a few things.

The differences between TISA and Impulse are purely cosmetic - at least prior to TNG. We even see FTL travel by "Impulse Drive" (The romulan Warbird)... which TISA exactly replicates.
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Old 10-29-2017, 03:32 PM   #39
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Default Re: Fantasy Games Unlimted: Space Opera

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Originally Posted by ak_aramis View Post
The differences between TISA and Impulse are purely cosmetic - at least prior to TNG. We even see FTL travel by "Impulse Drive" (The romulan Warbird)... which TISA exactly replicates.
The line in "Balance of Terror" is "their power is simple impulse", not that they don't have FTL. In "Doomsday Machine" the USS Constellation is shown to be operable at Warp using only fusion reactors, at reduced fuel efficiency, so it isn't inconsistent to interpret this as Scotty just saying that they lack warp reactors.
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Old 10-29-2017, 11:40 PM   #40
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Default Re: Fantasy Games Unlimted: Space Opera

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You're basing upon TNG and later. TNG didn't exist at the time.
No, I'm not.
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The beams were a generic FTL energy beam - the same interpretation that Steve Cole and Lou Zocchi & Michael Kurtic came to in their Star Trek board games.
They didn't use ammo, and didn't require the massive turrets that Space Opera shows them as. Also, no MegaBolts.
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The torpedoes were STL homers - exactly what we see them as in TMP and TWOK. Potent, but not insta-kills. In the show, however, they're about as effective as phasers, but are still projectiles.
And they're fired in small numbers, not in large salvos as they are in SO.
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Hmmm... awful lot like they are in FGU's Starships & Spacemen... Which I have on very good authority (Dr. Leonard Kanterman) was intended to be a star trek license, but which FGU couldn't afford a license for, so renamed a few things.
And which is not Space Opera.
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The differences between TISA and Impulse are purely cosmetic - at least prior to TNG. We even see FTL travel by "Impulse Drive" (The romulan Warbird)... which TISA exactly replicates.
And TISA is also only cosmetically different to Star Wars' drives, and overall SO fits Star Wars much better than it fits Star Trek.
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