|May/June 2018||Department||Article Title||Author|
|From the Editor||Jeff Zeitlin|
|Active Measures||Viral Shades||David Burden|
|Critics’ Corner||Three Supplements for Mongoose Traveller||“kafka”|
|Central Supply Catalogue||Megan Robertson|
|Variant Psionics for the Cepheus Engine||Robert Weaver|
|Active Measures||Getting Off the Ground: Cat and Mouse||Michael A. Cessna|
|Getting Off the Ground: Border Crossing||Jonathan McDermott|
|Columns||Confessions of a Newbie Referee: #34: Onwards, Upwards, Outwards||Timothy Collinson|
|Less Dangerous Game||Shaduquaram||Benedikt Schwarz|
|The Shipyard||Mongoose Traveller Designs: Pham’s Gunboats||Joshua Levy|
|The Prep Room||Jottings #4: Education||Jeff Zeitlin|
|Raconteurs’ Rest||The Adventures of Gerry Fynne: [Part 11] and [Part 12]||Sam Swindell|
|Kurishdam||Lecture Hall and Library: Jump Destinations: Alnimes||Robert DeVoe|
|Up Close and Personal||Jan Haakon Mattiason||Bill Cameron|
The articles listed and linked above are also linked in their appropriate sections of our website.
From the Editor
In discussions of Traveller, there often seems to be a perceived dichotomy, of play versus ‘gearheading’ or ‘worldbuilding’. While I will concede that ‘gearheading’ isn’t for everyone, I’ve come to the conclusion that ‘worldbuilding’ overlaps—or perhaps subsumes—both play and ‘gearheading’.
A referee can spend hours and hours rolling up and writing (and reading) about worlds, cultures, characters, trade goods, and so on, and in doing so, paint a picture of his (her) Traveller universe. That’s the ‘gearheading’, and it’s an important part of worldbuilding.
But a world is more than an encyclopedic compilation of places and things. It’s a living and dynamic collection of all those, plus people and their actions, thoughts, hopes, dreams, fears, and nightmares. And it’s all connected. Nothing really happens in isolation; what you do today influences what the people you interact with will do tomorrow.
Traveller and some other games try to emulate that, at least partially, in both the ‘reaction roll’ and having contacts (and allies, enemies, and rivals, in recent versions of Traveller). But the real worldbuilding happens when the players and the referee, and the characters and NPCs, start actually interacting. That’s when a world stops being a binderful of facts, and comes to life. And that’s when you’ve actually built a world. Even if you haven’t written a single thing about it.