Being in the Main the Mouth of Olde House Rules

Friday, December 18, 2015

Star Wars, Pulp, and Retrospace...

In 1977, I sat in a dark theater watching Star Wars.  It was a religious moment to be sure, as my jaw lay in my lap and I saw what must have seemed like the face of God.  Soon after, I'd go on to discover this little thing called fantasy role-playing, and I moved on to Tolkien and fantasy in the classic mode.  But I never forgot what I saw in that theater, and it inspires me still...       

Star Wars is, after all, a fantasy.  And I won't say that Wookies didn't show up in our early D&D campaign!

Years later, Robyn and I are making games, and Star Wars had an obvious influence on our one sci-fi offering; Retrospace!  For those who don't know, Retrospace is the science fiction expansion to our Blood of Pangea game, and it makes sense.  Space-faring exploits are pulp fantasy of the highest order, and Star Wars has everything in common with the daring-do of Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon, with more than a little Tolkien thrown in.  Retrospace channels it all:

The ORDIAN race are tall, shaggy things that speak in grunts and roars (their language is called M'waar).

Star Wars passed the pulp baton on
to a whole new generation of fantasy lovers!

Mack Marack, the sample character, closely resembles a certain space-faring rogue.  It's no accident.  Notice that he speaks droid, which counts as a language.

A variety of droids are available and may be encountered.

Psions exist, and many join the PSION ORDER, founded by the great teacher KENUBA of Sirius.  This semi-knightly order teaches responsible use of the OVERMIND (addressed here) and is countered by the wicked SIRIAN CULT.  Both wield special powers.

The Sirian BURN SWORD can easily sever limbs, but you can get robotic replacements, although too many and you'll become a cyborg with special powers and weaknesses.

BoP and Retrospace are digital only - sorry!

Yes, the Star Wars influence is definitely there, although we'd argue that the pulp writers got there first, and Star Wars owes the genre a massive spiritual debt.  We doubt Lucas would argue any of this, and, indeed, he admits to loving pulp - a lot!

Pulp begat Star Wars, and both begat a new generation of fantasy lovers and gamers.  Blood of Pangea: Retrospace stands on the shoulders of giants here, and this isn't corporate shill as much as an admission that Star Wars changed everything!  But if you do decide to check out Pangea/Retrospace, get the bundle, since the game is an expansion and requires the basic rules.  And perhaps wait until you've seen the new movie.  May the force be with you!

PS: There's FREE planetary and spacecraft worksheets available... 

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