DEPARTMENTS

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Visit The Frontier

It should be no surprise to you folks that I am a BIG fan of Star Frontiers. It was my first and only mainstream scifi RPG growing up until the release of the West End D6 Star Wars system and though I never played it as much as Star Wars, it has always held a special place among my gaming memories. Sonic weapons, personal defensive screens and an alien fonrtier that wasn't entirely settled were just some of the appeal the game had for me. Also, the rules for robots with their programmed skill sets and games interesting skill system were other pluses. D&D was still king for me at the time, but D&D didn't have skills rules. But a trip through the wayback machine isn't the point of this post. What is the point?

The point is a great revival of Star Frontiers that has been going for several years now and has shown what the love of a good game can do. While Old School RPGs have had a broad-ranging revival of their own, Star Frontiers has had an almost single front revival facilitated by the Star Frontiersman webzine and the digital rematering project that has reformated and consolidated the original SF rules into lovely PDFs. Since 2007 the complete run of the original Star Frontiers rules, modules and supplements has been given the digital treatment.

Star Frontiersman is a collosul effort of love, with fans and the "staff" of the project putting together no less than fourteen issues since 2007 with the first 6 issues being compiled and available for print on Lulu. The material found withing the pages of Star Frontiersman runs the usual range of gamem agazine fair featuring everything from new races, world write-ups, adventures, new equipment and source material. Articles in SF cover various fascets of the setting such as society, law, government, trade, etc as well as conversions for some systems and concepts not originally included in the game but suitable (cybernetics, Aliens, advanced robotic, etc).

Growing from a modest 18 pages in the first issue to a meaty page count of 82 in issue #12, Star Frontiersman has offered so much gaming material that in February they released a 20-page index for issues 1-13. This index gives an issue by issue table of contents and overview of the indivudal issues and then tops it all off by a chunky index by subject.

As mentioned before, content for the Star Frontiersman is mostly fan generated with articles openly solicited on their main site. Several forums and project departments allow people to work together or alone on projects and keep their material stored on the site. Whether it is articles, artwork, source material or adventures, they welcome it all for consideration for inclusion within the pages of the fanzine. Right now they are even having an encountewr design contest with a real prize (a customized hat).

Whether or not you are a fan of Star Frontiers or interested in good scifi gaming material, you should certainly check out the hard work at the Star Frontierman site. All the PDFs are free for download.

Enjoy!

-Eli

4 comments:

  1. Thanks Eli.

    I needed another distraction.

    I have downloaded pretty much everything from their website now.

    Even got me thinking about doing a fan-zine for Victorian Sci-Fi. I thought "The Aethergraph" sounded like a good title.

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  2. I think the time is right for an online VSF fanzine. I endorse this idea fully.

    -Eli

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  3. Haha, what a blast from the past! My fingers hurt from saving everything. It even has the original chits, hilarious!

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  4. It's a great project that I hope to contribute to once I'm back up to speed with SF. I wouldn't mind running a campaign someday.

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