The Keys to Good Science Fiction from Dragon #109

jedion357's picture
May 26, 2017 - 8:03am
The Keys to Good Science Fiction from Dragon #109 by Sherre Gilbert

Sherri Gilbert wrote:
Star Trek (in this case she means TOS) survives long after its first airing with a massive following of fans. Star Trek is the perfect science fiction campaign.

The recipe is simple... first add in believable named NPCs. Next sprinkle in alien flavor: the unexpected and unknown. A little hardware goes a long way so becarful not to overdo it. Last interaction between PCs is important. Mix and stir carefully

Her major points are in that statement and for the most part I'm sure you all get the gist of what she's saying.

What I questioned was PC interaction.

Her first point is that what people remember is PC interaction. "Remember when Arcturius blew up half the planet with the alien death ray that through him 20 feet into a bulkhead and left him with amnesia for a while?"

She suggests nudging the Players into a situation where cooperative play and group interaction is required.

- have an alien take a romantic interest in a PC who hangs back.
-sickness and injury
- promote romantic feelings between PCs
-promote character development that inolves a PC in a hobby

This promotes player interaction and builds realistic characters.

she has some good end notes on reference material that will help a GM on the fly make snap decisions when asked for information.

Any thoughts on her player/PC interaction point?

BTW you should beable to google dragon 109 pdf and come up with a free copy easily.
or use this:
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

jedion357's picture
May 26, 2017 - 8:07am
side comment the illustration attached to Change of Diet a gama world article is very good and obviously Alien inspired.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

Stormcrow's picture
May 26, 2017 - 12:23pm
You probably shouldn't be linking to any illegal copies of the magazine.

Gilbert's main point is don't mindlessly ape the tropes of space opera. The elements she names as part of the success of Star Trek are those elements that separate Star Trek from traditional space opera. Her advice boils down to keep it personal. She also presents some more practical tips for organizing a science-fiction game, though it's pretty generic.

Tchklinxa's picture
May 26, 2017 - 12:25pm

She makes great points PC development in the party is very important. 
 "Never fire a laser at a mirror."