This article originally appeared in Pyramid #5
Well, it's my second issue here at Pyramid. What have we learned?
First off, I've discovered that time flies when you're having fun. I was looking forward to a couple of weeks of breathing space after completing Issue #4, to do some long-range planning, go through the submissions, sell a few ads, that sort of thing. Then our print buyer found us a great new printer who was going to do it better for less money (every print buyer's dream) -- but all the deadlines got moved up three weeks.
Goodbye, breathing space.
So, now that this issue is in your eager hands (and out of my hair), I do have a little time to go through those submissions that have been piling up on my desk, catch up on the correspondence, and work on a couple of other projects. So those of you who have submitted articles in the past, oh, year or so can expect some sort of answer from us in the next couple of weeks. Honest. And then, we'll dive headfirst into Issue #6. Oh boy...
This IssueGreg Costikyan's fantasy novel By The Sword was read by millions as he serialized it on the Prodigy computer network, and by quite a few more when it was released in hardcover last year. It's a low-tech fantasy, set in a world that owes as much to the Native Americans of the great plains as to the medieval cultures of Europe. It's also a world where a good swindle is preferable to violence, and a charming con man can go as far as a muscled hero. Of course, it's even better to be both... Greg has given us an introduction to this world that can be used in any fantasy roleplaying game, and I'm sure you'll like it.
E.E. "Doc" Smith's fabled Lensman books are one of the great space opera series, and they're about to become the latest worldbook for GURPS. Prior to my assignment as editor of this book, I had only heard of the Lensman series. But after borrowing the books from Steve, I dove in -- and loved every minute of it! It has a great nostalgic feel to it, and it will definitely be a great universe to roleplay in. Designer Sean Barrett gives us a look at the making of GURPS Lensman in his Designer's Notes. Don't be a zwilnik -- check it out!
I don't want to just list everything in the magazine again here in this column (that's what the Table of Contents is for... ), but let me steer you towards a couple of other choice items on the menu. MGI's Underground has one of the grittiest, bleakest and funniest (in a very dark, warped sort of way) game worlds I have ever seen. And the graphic look of the book is also top-notch, and completely unlike anything else in gaming. Underground designer Ray Winninger tells us how he accomplished both in his Designer's Notes. Please give them a look, and check out the game, too, if you haven't already.
Much to the shocked amazement of all my friends here at the office, I have come out of the closet (so to speak) and revealed myself as a pro wrestling fan. To me, it's a great American soap opera, where there are no moral dilemmas and the good guys always win... eventually. Everybody else here just rolls their eyes and shake their heads, but I guess there's no accounting for tasts. So when I heard that Whit Publications secured a license with the World Wrestling Federation (the biggest promotion out there) to produce a roleplaying game, I plotzed. And then I got game designer M. David Clark to give us a peek. Just look for the photographs of Bret "The Hit Man" Hart and The Undertaker inside, and you'll find the article.
Looking AheadI had a couple of questions for you folks, and I'd appreciate if you took the time to write down your thoughts and send them our way.
Question #1: Do you prefer fewer, longer articles, or more, shorter ones? We could do complete roleplaying adventures, or in-depth looks at roleplaying worlds or even complete games -- but they all take up a huge amount of space, leaving very little room for any other substantial articles. And then if you have no interest in that major article's subject, the magazine would be to a large extent a waste. But if those longer-type articles are what you want to see most, it might be worth running the risk of sometimes doing something you don't care for. Let us know.
Question #2: What games do you want Pyramid to cover that we aren't covering now? And what games are we covering now that you wish we would drop? From what I've seen on the computer bulletin boards, read in the mail and heard at conventions, I get the impression that you guys are assuming that we're going to be a SJ Games house organ, in part if not in whole. Well, if that's what you want, sure. But don't make any assumptions -- we'll be whatever you want us to be. So do me a favor; list three games you'd like to see more coverage of in Pyramid, and one you'd like to see less of. We'll keep track of the votes, and change the content accordingly. While it's not exactly a democracy, at least it's a benevolent dictatorship. And these days, what more can you ask for?
There will be more questions in future issues of Pyramid. Please write us -- we're dedicated to giving you the gaming magazine you want.
- Scott D. Haring, Editor
Article publication date: February 1, 1994
Copyright © 1994 by Steve Jackson Games. All rights reserved. Pyramid subscribers are permitted to read this article online, or download it and print out a single hardcopy for personal use. Copying this text to any other online system or BBS, or making more than one hardcopy, is strictly prohibited. So please don't. And if you encounter copies of this article elsewhere on the web, please report it to email@example.com.