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September 30, 1997: Dino Hunt Named to Games 100

Dino Hunt, the acclaimed family card game of time travel and dinosaur hunting from Steve Jackson Games, has been honored by Games Magazine as one of their "Games 100," the finest games of the year.

"It's a tremendous honor," Dino Hunt designer Steve Jackson said. "Dino Hunt is a game I've been wanting to do for a long, long time, and I'm thrilled that other people are enjoying the game as much as I had hoped."

Dino Hunt is not the first Steve Jackson Games product to be honored in the "Games 100." Car Wars, Illuminati, Toon and GURPS have all been named to the list in years past.

In other Dino Hunt news, Dino Hunt is now a registered trademark of Steve Jackson Games.

T-Rex Custody Battle

If you have a cool million to drop, you might be able to buy Sue, the Tyrannosaurus rex, at the October 4th Sotheby's auction. But if no rich collector gets into the bidding, maybe Sue can go back to the "family" that loves her and wants to share her with science . . .

For more info, check out the SJG Tundra Office's hometown newspaper.
-- Woody Eblom

September 29, 1997: St. Michael and All Angels

If you're looking for something to do this evening, stop by your local house of worship for the Feast of St. Michael and All Angels. Have a good time. But if you introduce yourself afterwards as a "Seraph of Eli in service to Marc" or, worse yet, a "Calabite of Belial" I won't be held responsible for what happens.
-- Micah Jackson

September 28, 1997: Squeegee That Monitor For You, Sir?


This letter was recently posted to Usenet and other electronic forums on behalf of science fiction author Spider Robinson, author of the Callahan's Crosstime Saloon novels and short stories, and numerous other works. This version may be freely copied, linked to, mirrored and shouted about and pointed at. Please help it receive attention.
-- Steve Jackson

September 27, 1997: Dan Smith at NukeCon!

Dan Smith tells us he is making a rare personal appearance at NukeCon this October 4-5 in Omaha, NE. If you're in the area, you should go say hello.

Related plug: We have a Convention Listings Page right here on our web site. Check it out.
-- Scott Haring

September 26, 1997: The Arc-Hive

Illuminated Site of the Week: The Arc-Hive: bizarro chronicles of this freak-show we call the human race. The Japanese crucify Santa Claus. Texas honors the Boston Strangler. Secret societies. Invasions of privacy. You know something, maybe the Heaven's Gaters had something. Screw this culture. When's Hale-Bopp coming around again?

-- Number 2, Illuminated Sitekeeper

September 25, 1997: Excerpts from our New Releases

Effective immediately, we will be posting samples from each new roleplaying book we release. There will be excerpts from the text and a few illustrations as well . . . the editor will choose pieces that he thinks captures the essence of the book, and post them when the book goes to press. These will remain a permanent part of that books' web page.

We have already done this for GURPS Ultra-Tech 2, GURPS Planet Krishna, GURPS Black Ops, and the new In Nomine books, Night Music, The Marches, and Heaven & Hell. We will post excerpts for all future roleplaying books, and as time permits, we'll go back and do it for some of the already-published ones.

We hope this will help you get a better idea of what to expect from each new release. Enjoy!
-- Steve Jackson

September 24, 1997: RPGnet

I first heard of RPGnet when Sandy Antunes came by the booth at GenCon and talked it up. It's a pretty nifty gaming-only website with industry news, game reviews, convention listings and more. Small, but growing, and worth checking into.

They recently reviewed GURPS Mecha, In Nomine and Night Music, and had nice things to say about them all. Thanks, guys.
-- Scott Haring

September 23, 1997: About Ultra-Tech 2

We've heard that some game shops, misunderstanding what GURPS Ultra-Tech 2 is, have failed to order.

It is NOT a new edition of Ultra-Tech. It's a sequel - a whole new book.

If you don't see it in your game shop, that may be why . . . explain to them! If they don't want to hear, of course, you can order from the online catalog. Now that we are using FedEx, you'll get it reeeeeeeal fast.
-- Steve Jackson

September 22, 1997: Warehouse Level 3 Opens

The number of crates in Warehouse 23 is now over 2,000, so we've had to excavate another level. Yea, verily, it's getting deep in here . . .

One of our most prized new entries, submitted by Ignatius Reilly:

A large black sphere with a small concave indentation, apparently inert. When moistened with distilled water, any insects in the vicinity begin to approach it. The ringing sound of a muted television can also be heard. Its texture coarsens the further it is moved from the equator.

Notice he doesn't specify what it does . . . and I, for one, am just as glad.
-- Steve Jackson

September 21, 1997: FedEx Correction

We wrote some things a couple of days back about a new deal with Federal Express that weren't quite right.

Everything we said was true -- for domestic customers. For foreign customers, it will work like this:

Foriegn Direct Mail orders to individuals will be sent by USPS Air Mail for our standard foreign S&H charge of 40% of product cost for the order. FedEx delivery to foreign customers is available at a higher rate -- talk to the folks in Direct Mail when you place your order.

Foreign distributors' orders will be sent to their Freight Forwarders via FedEx Express Saver.

Sorry about the confusion.

September 20, 1997: Help Steve Replace His Geek Toy

Those who have met me at conventions know that I'm rarely separated from my little tape recorder. It's a very useful toy, letting me save every idea that flits through my head or every suggestion someone makes, right on the fly. It makes me look a bit like the FBI agent on Twin Peaks, but what the heck.

But my faithful little Olympus Pearlcorder L200 died, and it turns out they don't make it any more, and they can't fix it, and the new Olympus digital recorder is . . . well, not good. It's bulkier, and it has a tendency to turn itself on accidentally and record 15 minutes of pocket noises.

But they can't ALL be gone. There must be one for sale SOMEWHERE. So if you want to make me very happy, you could e-mail me with info about where some orphan Pearlcorder L200 is sitting on a shelf somewhere. If you're the first one who points me at the place where I can replace my geek toy, I'll make my gratitude manifest with a $100 gift certificate. Thanks!
-- Steve Jackson

September 19, 1997: The Alchemy Web Site

Illuminated Site of the Week: The Philosopher's Stone, the Elixir of Life, the Medicine of Metals, True Wisdom... from imagery and symbolism to historical texts to guidelines for present day practice of the ancient art, The Alchemy Web Site has it all. Questions agonized over by the greatest minds since the dawn of human civilization. Now it's your turn. Just don't get any on you.

-- Number 2, Illuminated Sitekeeper.

September 18, 1997: Austin Conquered, SJ smiles

While our Men In Black program continues to grow and expand from without, the Secret Masters are taking a more direct hand at home, plotting Special Deeds that will remain undisclosed for a while yet. To help further our goals, we have appointed Mistress-in-black Elizabeth Zanger as Austin MIB Cell Leader. Congratulations Liz!

If you're a local Austinite who isn't part of the conspiracy, but would like to be, please contact her and let her know why SJG needs your particular (and peculiar) talents.
Laz Zanger

September 17, 1997: Garfield Granted Trading-Card-Game Patent

On September 2, Richard Channing Garfield was issued US Patent #5662332 for a "trading card game method of play," according to the US Patent Database.

His claims of originality include "a method of playing games involving two or more players, the method being suitable for games having rules of game play that include instructions on drawing, playing, and discarding game components, and a reservoir of multiple copies of a plurality of game components..." and "entering one or more trading cards into play by placing the one or more trading cards face up in a first orientation on a playing surface, and at the player's option, using one or more trading cards that have been entered into play in accordance with the rules and tapping each trading card used in play so all players are aware the trading card is in use by turning the trading cards from the first orientation to a second orientation on the playing surface..."
-- Micah Jackson

September 16, 1997: SJG Announcements

Lots of things have been happening around here lately:

Two new Line Editors have been added to the growing list of Steve Jackson Games contributors. Lynette Cowper is now Line Editor for Illuminati: New World Order, and will oversee playtest and development of future INWO supplements, starting with the soon-to-be-released INWO SubGenius. And taking over as In Nomine Line Editor is Elizabeth McCoy, whose nickname -- "Archangel Beth" -- while appropriate, dates back to well before In Nomine was published.

We've also reached an agreement with Georgia Panaritis for the production of fine pewter, silver and gold jewelry based on several SJ Games products. The first pieces Panaritis produces will be for In Nomine and Illuminati, including the famous eye-in-the-pyramid logo and the In Nomine "burning feather," plus individual choir and band logos. The pieces will be available as pendants or pins (in silver or gold), as well as pewter key rings. The jewelry will be available in time for Christmas, and will be sold through regular SJ Games distribution channels, as well as from our online catalog.

And lastly, we've reached an exclusive agreement with Federal Express for outbound package shipping both domestic and international. "This simply means better service for our customers," Traffic Manager Brenda Hurst said. "Before, we could only promise our Direct Mail buyers delivery in four to six weeks -- now it'll take less than a week." The change to FedEx has mandated one change with distributors -- all shipments of new releases will come with a release date, announced in advance and stickered on each box as a reminder. Distributors will be prohibited from releasing a new product early, to keep things fair for all of our partners in the distribution network.

Visit our press releases page for the full announcements.

September 15, 1997: Someone you trust is one of us

If you didn't get a chance to get one of the Illuminati T-Shirts we had a few weeks ago, you're in luck - we still have a few left. Visit the Illuminated Stuff page to see what they look like, or our online catalog to order.

September 14, 1997: GURPS Black Ops to the Printer!

Jeff Koke's and S.John Ross' GURPS Black Ops has gone to the printer. Look for it in stores in mid- to late-October.

And remember that survey we did about game covers? We decided based on the results to go another way with the Black Ops cover. We'll use the old cover for Pyramid #28, which will feature a Black Ops adventure by our own Gene Seabolt.

GURPS Black Ops -- coming for you next month!
Scott Haring

September 13, 1997: Devival! Tonight!

[SubGenius Devival in Austin!!?!?] 8 pm till whenever! La Zona Rosa, on 4th Street in Austin! Click on the blessed little BOX for details, and feel that Invisible Shield pop up to protect you, by Bob's own loving grace, from the scourge of Pinkness!
-- Steve Jackson

September 12, 1997: The Skeleton Closet

Illuminated Site of the Week Hey, we all know that behind the schmaltz and the baby-kissing there's a seedier side to the boys and girls on Capitol Hill. That's true of all of us, right? It's just that during election time so many smoke screens are set up that you'd have an easier time getting to the truth in the transcripts of the OJ trial. We're digging in for a two-year Odyssey to the White House: The Skeleton Closet is one for the bookmark file folks. Watch for this site to sizzle as our players skip, stumble and fall down the Yellow Brick Road.

-- Number 2, Illuminated Sitekeeper

September 11, 1997: Heaven and Hell to the Printer!

The In Nomine supplement Heaven and Hell has gone to the printer. That puts it in a game store near you sometime in the second half of October.

And a dandy supplement it is, too, with expanded writeups on Dominic, Asmodeus, Kronos and Yves, two new Superiors, everything you wanted to know about the Celestial Realms and a complete adventure.

Watch for it.

-- Scott Haring

September 10, 1997: Shipping This Week

Got some new product heading out to stores this week . . .

The Marches is Book II of The Revelations Cycle for In Nomine. It's got tons of stuff on the Ethereal Realms, expanded write-ups of four Superiors (Beleth, Blandine, Gabriel and Belial), two new choirs, rules for Sorcerers and a complete adventure. It rocks.

We're also sending out the much-awaited Knightmare Chess, 2nd Edition. This Second Edition has the same 80 cards as the original set, but we cleaned up the wording on a few of the cards, expanded the rules to answer some questions, and changed the graphic design of the cards to make them easier to read. A lot of people have been clamoring for Knightmare Chess since it went out of print last summer, and now it's not only back, but back better than before.

Like the sign says, check 'em out.
-- Scott Haring

September 9, 1997: Auction Winner in Black Ops!

Remember Grover Browning? He outbid all other comers for the opportunity to be immortalized by Dan Smith in the pages of GURPS Black Ops -- and so he has!

Grover sent us a couple of snapshots, which Dan used to put him in the middle of the action you see here. Grover will get the autographed Smith original plus a free copy of the book. Thanks, Grover!

Have you checked out the auction page lately? You'll never know what you might find . . .

-- Scott Haring

September 8, 1997: Another Crate Opened

A Warehouse submission from Mark Nettle, and wouldn't you give a penny for HIS thoughts . . .

A cheap plastic tiara. If worn by a human female when kissing a male frog, she will instantly turn into a highly attractive female frog.

September 7, 1997: Metaverse Redux . . .

The Metaverse is offline again, but only for a month or so. When it returns, it will be as a Steve Jackson Games project, incorporating a MOO version of the GURPS roleplaying system. Chief Wizard Kira is accepting a few MOO-experienced volunteers to help with coding; contact her for more information. Please do not write to volunteer your services as a playtester . . . when that time comes (and it won't be long), we'll announce it here, and everyone will be welcome.
-- Steve Jackson

September 6, 1997: The Lucidity Institute

Illuminated Site of the Week Tired of your dead-end job? Had enough of sitting alone in your underwear at 3 am staring at the 1-800 ads? Or maybe you're just sick of the endless Wings reruns on TV. Well, the folks at the Lucidity Institute would like you to know that you have God-like power to change the world. Learn to control your dreams and you can be the baron of industry, you can have Jenny McCarthy/Brad Pitt covered in marinara sauce, hey - you can even be the high-powered TV exec who finally puts this country out of its misery. And for only $175... Bunko artists or Illuminated Ones spreading happiness and contentment to the uninitiated? You make the call.

-- Number 2, Illuminated Sitekeeper

September 5, 1997: Austin Devival --- Get SLACK!!

[SubGenius Devival in Austin!!?!?]

What happens when the Illuminati join forces with two other groups who "verily ken more than is the wont of mortal men?" More fun and slack than you can launch a head at, that's for sure! In cooperation with The Church of the SubGenius and Fringeware, we're going to show Austin what nightlife can be like, whether it should be or not. And if you're really lucky, you might find some of us running demonstrations of the INWO SubGenius expansion!
--Laz Zanger

September 4, 1997: SJ Games Announces GURPS Traveller

Steve Jackson Games is proud to announce that it has acquired the rights to create a GURPS version of the classic Traveller, the oldest and most popular outer-space roleplaying game ever.

"This is something we and our fans have wanted for a long, long time," Steve Jackson said. "I'm very happy to finally be able to do it, especially since we'll be working with the same people who made Traveller great in the first place."

Long-time Traveller editor and writer Loren Wiseman will serve as Line Editor for the GURPS Traveller series of books and will write the first release. "Loren and (Traveller original author) Marc Miller are the real deal," Managing Editor Scott Haring said. "With their help, we're going to do books that the die-hard Traveller fans will love."

The license from Sweetpea Entertainment -- owners of Traveller after original publishers Game Designer's Workshop went out of business in 1995 -- sets GURPS Traveller in an "alternate timeline" from the one currently being published by Imperium Games. Haring said, "In our timeline, Emperor Strephon doesn't get assassinated, and the `virus' that was the entire basis for Traveller: The New Era did not devastate the Imperium. Our timeline is a continuation of the original Traveller, though with Wiseman and Miller's help we'll be taking it in some interesting directions."

The first GURPS Traveller volume will include a description of the basic Traveller gameworld, GURPS rules for characters, equipment and spacecraft of the Traveller universe, and conversion rules between the two systems. "We want players to be able to convert any Traveller material -- and there's a lot of it out there -- to GURPS right off the bat, and we want Traveller players to be able to play in our alternate timeline," Haring said.

The first GURPS Traveller release is tentatively scheduled for an early 1998 release. Scheduling for subsequent books in the series is yet to be determined.
-- Scott Haring

Show your membership in the classy conspiracy!

Remember when I filed my GenCon report and hinted at a deal that would interest In Nominefans... well, it's done and can now be revealed. Coming soon: In Nomine and Illuminati jewelry. The same woman who produces World of Darkness Jewelry for White Wolf will be doing the "eye-in-the-pyramid" design as well as several In Nomine designs, including the "flaming feather" design and the cross that appears on the front of the hardcover. These pieces will be made of pewter, silver, or gold, and will be available (as appropriate) as pendants, pins, or keyrings. When they are released, they'll be available from us through our Direct Mail Catalog, your favorite game store or the manufacturer herself. Watch this space for more details and another announcement when the jewelry is available.

On a more personal note, I'm wondering whether you fans out there are happy with the new products I'm introducing. If you like (or don't like) the t-shirts, or the new jewelry, or just have other suggestions for licensed products we should be doing, please send me an e-mail. Just don't write about Deluxe Illuminati, computer versions of Car Wars, or miniatures for Ogre, I'm working on those as hard as I can. Thanks for your help.

Oops, still no time for what happened to Dr. Kromm at GenCon. Maybe next time.
-- Micah Jackson

September 3, 1997: Let's Talk About Covers

We've done a little something different for the cover for GURPS Black Ops and we were sitting around the office wondering what the gamers would think of it, which led to a more general discussion of just how important covers are in the gaming business.

Then we said, "Hey, we've got these cool web pages and stuff, let's just ask them!"

So we are. Please take a moment to answer this brief survey. Thank you.
-- Scott Haring

September 2, 1997: Worldcon Report

The World Science Fiction Convention was held last weekend in San Antonio. We haven't set up a sales booth at a Worldcon for a decade or so, and with one thing and another, it's been years since I even WENT to one. But here it was in our back yard, so we went.

Sales were OK, and in terms of just meeting people, it was a big win lots of people were glad to see that we were back. (Big thanks to MIBs Laz and Liz Zanger and Al Griego for booth support.) And we did some business and made some deals, too. This has us thinking that it might be good to do some more Worldcons. Unfortunately, next year's Worldcon in Baltimore, is a direct conflict with GenCon. I don't know how we will deal with that.

As Worldcons go, this was a small and quiet one programming closed at 5pm every day, and there were only around 5,000 people there. But the parties were fun.

Biggest win for the con: The fantastic hand-painted cartoon signs that Sherlock did for the art show, dealer room, green room and so on.

Biggest lose for the con: IMHO, that had to be the preprinted nametags, with "LoneStarCon 2" in big letters and the wearer's name in teeny letters. I *know* what con I'm at, dammit; I want to know who I am talking to. I just shake my head when little cons make this mistake, but when a WORLDCON does it, there's no excuse.

Biggest personal win: I got to describe a new species. Sorry, details not available at your clearance.

Biggest personal lose: was when Bob Eggleton, who I've known for years, came up to the booth to say hi and I could not remember his name. I knew who he WAS, but not his NAME! (A readable nametag would have helped, grr.) Talk about humiliation. It's embarrassing enough when somebody I met once, five years ago, comes up and says "I bet you don't remember me." Losing the name of somebody you like, and have worked with, *while you are talking to them,* is not pretty. Bob was a gentleman about it, though, when he quit laughing. And he won the Hugo for Best Artist this year!

Best loot acquired: a signed copy of the new Buck Godot from Phil Foglio. Only one issue left in this story . . . how is he gonna wrap it all up?

Best filk overheard: a tie between "Knights in White Satin" (a tale of chivalry and cross-dressing) and "Making Love Weighing Nothing At All."
-- Steve Jackson

September 1, 1997: Searching for Playtesters

When a book comes back from the printer, like the recent GURPS Planet Krishna, we send out the "comps," complimentary copies, to everybody who helped us get the book out. That includes the playtesters, of course.

But sometimes, a book is so long in the making that we lose track of some folks who made their comments perhaps two years ago or more. So if you know (or if you are) any of these folks, please contact Scott Haring:

Ben and Emily Fornshell
Kathy and Scott McClure
Nick Pennola
Scott Raun

We owe you a copy of GURPS Planet Krishna, and we'd like to pay up.
-- Scott Haring

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