"Go to the sign of Harvel's Axe, a dubious inn on the edge of the Thieves Quarter, in the City of Greyhawk, and look to your own wrist. If you perceive a bracelet and dangling dice, watch for the next throw in the war between Law and Chaos and be prepared to follow the compelling geas." -Signal

Thursday, November 3, 2011

GURPS - Cyberworld, Spectral Bridge

 GURPS Cyberworld was released initially released in 1993. It followed the GURPS Cyberpunk product by two or three years. Cyberworld is marketed as a campaign setting for the earlier product but it differs in the technology level that is presented there. The Cyberworld technology level is that of a lower level. It does not have all of the "cyber" that is present in the earlier product.

The world that is presented in Cyberworld is one that differs from many of the worlds i have seen in other settings for the genre. The book focuses mainly on the what passes for the United States of America. The premise is that due to a ever increasing downward spiral of events that the United States has become a dictatorship with only the facade of democracy.

The history it puts forth starts in 1993 when the book was originally released and goes forward to 2043. There are some interesting ideas and events put forth in the timeline they suggest. There are even some events that eerily seem to mirror events that have occurred, are in the process of occurring or might have occurred if things would have gone just a bit different. The turning point in the history takes place in a series of events that result from the election of 2008.

The world of Cyberworld is not one that I would want to live in nor adventure in. Please do not take this as a statement that the product is bad. This is not the case at all. The book does a great job of describing the history leading up to and then actually laying out a dystopian future. The world it presents is very much akin to that of "V for Vendetta" but set in the United States. As an aside I am having to fight breaking out into social commentary here.

I think the setting put forth in Cyberworld would be one that I would not use for a Cyberpunk setting at all. I personally feel that the Cyberpunk setting is much better geared towards the person and not the geopolitical. The setting of Cyberworld would be a great one for a modern based game. It might even be that of a Cyberpunk world but with the focus taken off of the individual and put on the broader picture of society as whole but I think that is a stretch.

I would say that this is a product worth having but not one that I would use as it was marketed. I hate using the d20 references but I am going to have to say that this would make a great d20 modern setting. It could even be called a future alternate setting for the Damnation Decade or something along that lines. This history portion alone is a good read and like I said in some cases it came close and still could be prophetic in others.

From the back of the book:

Life is Cheap on the Edge

GURPS Cyberworld is your guide to the world of the One-and-Twenty, where the United States is under the totalitarian hold of the Provisional Government, the cities are floundering in their own decay and technology races faster and faster.

This book has everything players and GMs need to explore a dangerous and brutal world. If you're quick enough, you can outwit the black-clad Nerks, get enough cred and connections to fix yourself up with some street cyberwear, and maybe even jack into the global net and poke around for some easy loot. But if the korp console jockeys catch you in part of the matrix, you'll be dodging zeromen for the rest of your short life.


Spectral Bridge

Level: Second
Range: 3"
Duration: 1 Turn + 1 Round/Level
Area of Effect: Special
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: One Round
Saving Throw: None

When this spell is cast the magic user will cause a spectral bridge to come into being. The bridge though appearing to me ghostly in nature will in reality be very sturdy and will support virtually any weight that would be put upon it.

The actual appearance of the bridge can be specified by the caster. It can range from a flimsy rope bridge to that of a ornate bridge built by artisan architects. The result will be the same mechanically but the appearance may affect how others proceed. The bridge can be a maximum length of 30 feet plus 10 feet per level of the caster. The maximum width of the 50 feet.

Except where the fears of the individual might come into play there is nothing that will make using the bridge dangerous if the caster wants you to be crossing it. The caster can not affect individuals crossing the bridge but they can cancel the bridge at anytime of their choosing prior to the normal expiration of the spell.

The material component of this spell will be a small mock up of any type of bridge. The components are not sued up with the casting of the spell and may be reused.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up or conceived of back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit. 

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