GURPS Online

Just saw this. Forgive me if it was already mentioned on these boards and I missed it.

Austin, TX and Denver, CO - August 20, 2002: Steve Jackson Games and Worlds Apart Productions today announced an exclusive partnership to develop multiple online games based on Steve Jackson Games’ widely popular GURPS system.

GURPS - which stands for Generic Universal RolePlaying System - provides a set of rules and guidelines for playing RPGs in any genre or time period. First released in 1986, it is still one of the best-selling RPG systems today, because of its highly modular and adaptable system and its extensive library of hundreds of source books, covering everything from Aliens to the Old West to World War II.

“We’ve been wanting to take GURPS online for a long time,” said Steve Jackson, President of Steve Jackson Games. “Until now, we just hadn’t found the right partner. Worlds Apart understands the importance of taking care of the player community, and we’re excited about what we’re going to be able to do together.”

Immediate development plans have not yet been announced, but a number of titles are being contemplated, with an emphasis on making the best use of the ability of GURPS to provide a common gameplay foundation for a wide variety of settings.

“There is no richer or more powerful system to use as the basis for an online universe,” said Scott Martins, President of Worlds Apart. “Steve Jackson and Steve Jackson Games are pioneers in the games industry, and we’re honored to be working alongside a company with such an illustrious history.”

Don’t think it’s been discussed here, but I did see that recently. Pretty cool news, I think. I’ve never used GURPS much, but it seems pretty easy, and should lead to a larger market for RPGs. Maybe.

Hopefully most of them will be good. :-)

One word:


…Black Ops is fun, too, but two days to make a character…

Damn. GURPs does the best historical supplements for any system - that could make for some revolutionary stuff right there. And they also have made supplements based on very cool subgenres and franchises (Traveller (hard sci fi), Castle Falkenstein (steampunk) and World of Darkness (trendy horror) come to mind). Hehe, and sure, Autoduel wouldn’t be a bad thing at all! I might have to renew my AADA membership.

This could be awesome if they take the time to do it right. Frankly, I’d wait and see how SWG and Sims Online go if I were them. There are piles of good ideas there and letting someone else test drive them would be better than missing the boat entirely. Old style MMORPGs are going to be history.

Worlds Apart and their publisher, Skotos (also publisher of Jessica’s Biting the Hand Column), are in the business of making text-only RPGs, so I’m 90% sure that’s what they’re talking about here.

OK, in vague, vague, memory land here -

Wasn’t SJ involved in trying to port/adapt GURPS before, but the agreement fell apart before release, resulting in the game coming out and being being “GURPS-like” in the systems sense, but changed enough not to obviously be GURPS?

My Scotch-raddled memory wants to say Fallout, but I dunno.

Ends incoherent ramble…


Keep with the Scotch. 'Twas Fallout.

I’m glad they dumped the GURPS license, really. The game wasn’t any worse for it, and the point of contention, if I am rememering correctly, was that SJG wanted them to change the opening movie. Since that opening movie remains my all-time favorite to this day, I’m glad that they didn’t change it.

Yeah, it was the movie that soured the deal. If I remember right, it was the gun-to-the-head execution that Jackson had issue with. I certainly respect him for sticking to his principles on that.

IMO, even though the 3rd edition D&D rules are a vast improvement over the previous editions, GURPS is still by far the most coherent and elegant rpg ruleset on the market. I’d certainly consider playing a text-only online game if it was faithful to the GURPS system. What I’d kill for though, is a piece of GURPS software on par with the NWN toolset, coming at it from the generic angle so modders could whip up everything from Wild West to hard science fiction scenarios.

I like GURPS, but there are a number of systems that I like better. The old West End Games Star Wars rules (pre-D20) were fantastic–versatile and more elegant than the GURPS mechanics. In fact, I think moving to the D20 system was a downgrade, in that instance. For tabletop gaming, I mostly use my own system these days when I’m not using D20 D&D. I made it, so it does everything the way I like it… =)

The collapse of the GURPS deal triggered the birth of the SPECIAL system (used in Fallout).

A couple buddies of mine are working on a system they call TURF, but I can’t remember what it stands for. heh

  • Alan

I played in a GURPS fantasy campaign and a GURPS special agents campaign. That system had amazing flexibility. It was easy to exploit at times, especially with called shots, but then we all know how that works in Fallout as well :). Overall, such a game could spawn other games in just about any genre you can think of, which makes it more promising. I’d love to see some more unique settings. I wouldn’t mind a Far East MMORPG.

The most promising part of developing a GURPS game is you have the ability to make a RANGE of products that all use essentially the same rules. That means it’s easier to draw players of one product into a new product. You could build a franchise of MMOs that aren’t the same setting but the same system. Neat.

When they were talking about adding new realms to DAOC, me and a couple fellow players at work lobbied for Japan, Korea, and China. I know it doesn’t make much sense in the Camelot mythos, but they made all the albion and midgard shit up, too, and like I wouldn’t spend 10000 hours getting my weaponsmithing up to “Thousandfold Steel Katana - difficulty 835”


Speaking of new lines of GURPs games, ya’ll might already know this but, there’s a spanking new flagship line (complete with hardcover basic rules) based on WWII. In the initial book you get a decent overview of WWII, generic orders of battle, and rules for creating almost any kind of vehicle you can imagine. A few more specialized articles and guidelines for running campaigns, along with basic GURPs rules, are included. They’re planning all sorts of expansions it looks like.

That could make for an interesting MMORPG along with everything else.

It looks like Jackson may have given up on interacting with the electronic side, and is now paralleling it in a weird synergy. First FRAG, and now this. Very samrt, if you ask me.

It does sound interesting. Anyone look at it in depth?