TRAVELLER: Out of the Box–The Peculiar Lack of Science-Fiction in Original Traveller

Tales to Astound!


Here are the Science Fiction concepts in the original Traveller rules, published in 1977 in Books 1, 2, and 3:

  • Jump Drive Technology for Interstellar Travel
  • Interstellar Civilizations
  • Interstellar Communication Moves at the Speed of Interstellar Travel
  • Indigenous Life Forms on Countless Worlds
  • Psionics
  • Cold Sleep
  • Grav Vehicles
  • Advanced Drugs
  • Laser Canons
  • Laser Rifles

That. Is. It.

There are no aliens. No robots. No genetic engineering. Jump Drive technology is never defined. Just the list above. And several of the items on the list are incredibly bland. In fact, overall, the whole list is kind of bland.

Which is kind of weird if you think about it. Why would a game about “Science-Fiction Adventure in the Far Future” have so little Science-Fiction in it?


Screen Shot 2016-04-16 at 4.58.51 PM

Remember that the original concept for Traveller was very GURPS-ish: a generic system that could emulate every possible part…

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About Jack

BRIEF BIO: Jack Gunter is a writer of fiction, non-fiction, poetry, and songs. He is the co-owner of Open Door Communications, a copywriter, an inventor, and a former broker and private investigator. He is a naturalist and an amateur scientist and cryptologist. He likes to compose music and to design and play games and puzzles of all types. He homeschooled his children. He lives in the Upstate of South Carolina with his beautiful wife, talented two daughters, his old friend and Great Dane Sam, and his three Viking Cats.

Posted on May 11, 2016, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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