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Old 08-01-2021, 01:15 PM   #5
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Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: traveller
Default Re: Sources for a Pulp-Sci-Fi Game

Originally Posted by PTTG View Post
What I'm looking for are excellent and exciting old-school fiction and non-fiction of both pulp and WWII aviation and naval..iation. I'd like something that will help me make situations that are authentic to the feel of military communications and practices, the hierarchy, and the etiquette of naval and air forces.
My local used book stores have a "pulp" shelf with cheap paperbacks from the 1950's to 1970's; there is a similar shelf in the Military section. You could do a lot worse than finding the equivalent where you live and just picking up war memoirs at random. Almost all of them were written by participants in the actions they describe. The writing may not be the greatest, but the situations, etc., are surely authentic. Most of them are short, when 100 pages for a book was not uneconomical.

Tom Clancy's Carrier and Fighter Wing are probably the most accessible all-in-one introductions to air operations around the turn of the millennium. Most changes from WWII have been refinements rather than paradigm shifts, although guided missiles make for very different actions than dumb bombs, rockets, or cannons. Arguably, though, guidance systems won't go away in the future.

The US Naval Safety Center publishes a magazine called Approach. It's all about mishaps (actual and avoided) and lessons learned. We used to get a copy at my Army aviation unit. Lots of "there I was" stories by working aviators; good for getting a feel for the jargon. I was always impressed by the things they took for granted before something went wrong, e.g.: formation flight, over water, at night, radio silence and navaids blacked out... crazy stuff.

There's an anime movie called The Sky Crawlers that has a pretty authentic feel. It wasn't very successful, so you can probably find it cheap.

Same goes for civilian and espionage at sea and in the air.
Not sure what you're looking for, here. Espionage per se doesn't generally take place at sea or in the air -- that's more reconnaissance and surveillance. Espionage is usually focused on collecting human intelligence. Again, there are a host of post-WWII spy novels of reasonable authenticity (e.g., Ian Fleming did, in fact, work for British Intelligence during the war). Stories about reconnaissance are harder to come by, since it's pretty boring and exacting work until you actually find something, and then it transitions straight into a battle narrative.
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