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Old 10-27-2009, 04:47 PM   #111
Agemegos
 
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Default Re: GURPS Does It The Hard Way!

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Originally Posted by opposedToGravity View Post
i dont agree.
The evidence is in the e23 "What's Hot" list. Which I will link again: http://e23.sjgames.com/hot.cgi?lmt=1...-10-27&ord=qty
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apparently world books sell.
Yes, world books sell, but not as well as genre books. And genre books don't sell as well as rule expansions. And rule expansions don't sell as well as gear books. And gear books don't sell as well as the basic set. Everyone wants the basic set, and the gear books overlap a lot of genres. But then the SF players don't buy Fantasy or Dungeon Fantasy or Supers, and the Interstellar Wars and Tales of the Solar Patrol players don't buy Transhuman Space. And only a few of the Transhuman Space players buy Singapore Sling.

And adventure is within a campaign scheme, and a campaign is within a setting, and a setting is within a genre, and a genre is only a fraction of the immensity of GURPS. Because GURPS covers a lot of genres, and each genre covers a lot of settings, and each setting covers a number of campaign schemes, each adventure is going to sell to only a fraction of a fraction of a fraction of a fraction of the GURPS market, and only to the GMs within that.

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if on the other hand there would be more support for these worlds i am pretty sure that sales of those world books would also increase.
I agree. But that isn't much help to the people who write the adventures. If I wrote, say, a dozen good adventures for Tales of the Solar Patrol SJ Games would gladly publish them, and the availability of those adventures would increase sales of TotSP, the Spaceships series, Ultra-Tech, and even, probably the basic set. That would be great for Steve Jackson, and nice for Sean Punch, David Pulver, Kenneth Peters, and especially Lizard. But I don't get royalties on the basic set, TotSP, Ultra-Tech, or Spaceships. Those adventures would have to sell 600 copies to make me 4 cents per word, which is a derisory rate of pay.

Adventures would be rain-makers. But most of the rain would fall in someone else's bucket. So writing adventures isn't an attractive prospect for writers.

I have written adventures, some of them quite successful. I used to run events at games conventions, and I had a little reputation for doing a very good line in traditional, structured, face-to-face, over-the-table RPG adventures unlike the LARP and improv. theatre fare that tended to prevail. Such adventures are quite difficult to write. My last one took five months, required extensive feedback from a GMing group, and had to be playtested three times before it ran right. That's a lot of work to do for a measly few hundred bucks, which I could earn in a day as a consultant.

Everyone wants to write the next Spaceships or Mysteries because they sold quite well (however, we recognise that we are not as good as David Pulver or Lisa J. Steele). Everyone wants to write a world book, because they are fun. Very few want to write adventures because they are difficult, not fun, and don't sell very well.

SJ Games wants to publish them. But free-lance writers don't want to write them. A series of good adventures would be great for SJ Games, but not so good for the writers.
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Old 10-27-2009, 04:47 PM   #112
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Default Re: GURPS Does It The Hard Way!

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Originally Posted by opposedToGravity View Post
lucky you.
My point is that you might want to learn some alternate GM skills in order to enable you to craft adventures with little prep time.
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Old 10-27-2009, 04:52 PM   #113
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Default Re: GURPS Does It The Hard Way!

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Fair enough, if you're talking about old hands, but not for new role-players. But I concede the point. However, as I said in that post, as an old hand I do want new adventures.

Overall, PrinceYyrkoon, you're right. I too would love to see a full length GURPS campaign, with its own unique setting. Those arguing that no author would embark on that if they wanted to get paid a reasonable rate for their time are not decrying the idea so much as pointing out why it's not been done.

Pinnacle's a better comparison with SJG as Paizo is tapping into D&D. Are the Pinnacle scenarios of Savage Worlds profitable? I hope so. Maybe the way the game is marketed helps?

Graham
Thanks for the comments there. I understand that its difficult. Other companies have taken a similar product and ran with it, however. Something like SW may be a flash in the pan, but its doing well for the minute. Gurps may have a different audience but were all rpg guys. I think people would respond positively to SJG using a different approach, perhaps, but, as people have said, its not me gambling my own money away. It occurs to me (an outsider new guy to an extent), that Gurps doesnt always make the most of what it has by exploiting scenario possibilities of published settings.
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Old 10-27-2009, 04:53 PM   #114
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Originally Posted by Ulzgoroth View Post
Read just one more line of context, maybe? I was setting your "No used ideas" next to opposedToGravity's "make it generic fantasy".

Ah, ok, apologies.
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Old 10-27-2009, 04:57 PM   #115
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trooper6

Pinnacle have something called Savage Worlds and its a generic rpg. Theres lots of scenario material. What you say doesnt fly, really.
Savage World is generic is setting but not generic in tone. GURPS supports radically different tones. It ranges from hyper-cinematic, to hyper-gritty. From combat heavy, to no combat at all. From war games to soap operas.

The radical variety of ways in which people on the ground are using GURPS makes the audience diffuse and therefore hard to make adventures that will please any critical mass of people.

I'm pretty sure the Fantasy campaign that I would write would not be one you'd be happy with. Because it would:
a) be gritty, not cinematic
b) be low magic, not high magic--probably using some alternate magic system from Thaumatology
c) be more talking than fighting
d) be about politics
e) be about a world of gray hats and compromised morality and difficult choices, many of which don't have any really good paths
f) would not be about power fantasy

Even if I create a "generic" fantasy campaign, you probably still like it. Others might fight it awesome...but I'm not going to get all of the fantasy audience...because the GURPS fantasy audience is much more diverse than the fantasy base of other more narrowly focused games.
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Old 10-27-2009, 05:03 PM   #116
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Brett

I think you highlight the issue here.

It is not in the interests of the writers to write scenario material with the structure presently used at SJG.

Thing is, there is a percieved wisdom that scenario books sell less, and this is bourne out by the history. This shouldnt be an issue for writers, however. SJG should perhaps realise more that scenario material breathes life into the settings. So they can be a kind of lost leader in a way. They absolutely shouldnt be though. Theyre vital, in my opinion, for the longevity of the setting.

What we have is a dearth of scenario material coupled with an excess of setting books. This cant be good for an rpg company. I know SJG has been around a long time, but I would be concerned about continuing this strategy.
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Old 10-27-2009, 05:03 PM   #117
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Default Re: GURPS Does It The Hard Way!

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SJ Games wants to publish them. But free-lance writers don't want to write them. A series of good adventures would be great for SJ Games, but not so good for the writers.
I think the problem here is that prospective writers want a fat check—to which I certainly empathize—but they're just not going to get one in this industry; not freelance, anyway. As an ex-SJG artist, I never expected to get a great deal of money for my work—I did it because I wanted to, and it was nice to get something for it. Not everyone is going to look at things that way, I know, but some will—those are the guys we need to motivate.

Personally, I don't care who writes the campaign, or who publishes it—I just need something to start from. I'm planning to run GURPS Autoduel in the near-future, and once again, my mind is wandering back to my old Road Atlas series, and the adventures published there. There have been at least two campaign ideas of mine that used that old Trespasser's Isle adventure from Pyramid as a centerpiece. If there was something "bigger" out there, even if it was a genre or setting I'm not as familiar with (or like as much), I'd probably give it a shot—I'm getting tired of working from scratch.
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Old 10-27-2009, 05:04 PM   #118
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Default Re: GURPS Does It The Hard Way!

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The radical variety of ways in which people on the ground are using GURPS makes the audience diffuse and therefore hard to make adventures that will please any critical mass of people.
I've never been entirely happy with this argument. Even if most of what I play is gritty and realistic (say), if someone produced a supplement of ready-to-run cinematic material I'd be quite happy to pick it up to use for a change of tone.

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Old 10-27-2009, 05:07 PM   #119
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Default Re: GURPS Does It The Hard Way!

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Savage World is generic is setting but not generic in tone. GURPS supports radically different tones. It ranges from hyper-cinematic, to hyper-gritty. From combat heavy, to no combat at all. From war games to soap operas.
I disagree entirely here. SW started life as a wargame. It is pretty similar, in fact, to Gurps, with the way it treats and describes perks and quirks, if not in complexity or depth. I think this is detail, not a legitimate reason as to why Gurps cant offer the same in the way of scenario material.
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Old 10-27-2009, 05:13 PM   #120
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Default Re: GURPS Does It The Hard Way!

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I disagree entirely here. SW started life as a wargame. It is pretty similar, in fact, to Gurps, with the way it treats and describes perks and quirks, if not in complexity or depth. I think this is detail, not a legitimate reason as to why Gurps cant offer the same in the way of scenario material.
Hmm. Not sure about this. When you read the Savage Worlds rules they scream 'cinematic' at you. The experience progression is all about levelling up and getting cool new abilities. The Savage Worlds settings all back up the idea of Fast, Furious, (Pulp) Fun. The Bennies system and the way the system allows you to shrug off damage support that.

So, for example, you could release a Traveller conversion for Savage Worlds, but it really wouldn't feel like canon Traveller. It would have the dials turned up to cinematic Traveller.

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