Daily Illuminator

August 27, 2014: GURPS Fourth Turns 10 With . . . Phil Masters

GURPS Banestorm

Transhuman Space: Changing Times

Giving GURPS a new edition implied many different requirements. Sean and David handled the fundamental duty of writing the core rulebooks, but a whole bunch of us were involved in other tasks. To begin with, it seemed like a good idea to bring some preexisting GURPS settings up to date, which is how I ended up co-writing GURPS Banestorm. But the updated line would have seemed terribly backward-looking without some new setting material, so I'm also proud to claim credit for the likes of GURPS Infinite Worlds: Britannica-6 and GURPS Thaumatology: Age of Gold. And while the new core books are comprehensive, there was scope for some new rules material and for bringing old-edition options into the 21st century, which for me meant hammering together GURPS Thaumatology, as well as contributing some embellishments to Sean's magisterial work on GURPS Powers.

Sometimes these categories of contribution overlapped, not least in the Transhuman Space line, for which I became the editor. Mostly, that's about setting update and expansion, but there were a whole load of templates in need of updating, which occasionally took me into the borderlands of rules expansion. I'm still amused that a disadvantage of my creation – No Legs (Portable) – ended up being needed in two completely different places.

But the next big product with my name on it is something else again. Sixteen years ago, I had the honor of working on the Discworld Roleplaying Game. I think that worked out okay, but in the time since, I've learned more about creating licensed setting books, the Discworld has evolved, and we've gone to Fourth Edition. So there's a new edition of that game coming up soon, which might help bring GURPS Fourth Edition to more readers.

So, much as I enjoy looking back, here's to looking forward.


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