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Re: [GZG] [OT] Books (Weber/White/Meier)

From: Stephen Cooke <s.cooke1@h...>
Date: Mon, 21 Jul 2008 17:52:42 +0100
Subject: Re: [GZG] [OT] Books (Weber/White/Meier)

Oerjan Ariander wrote:


> Or you could allow the Bugs to win and eat us all. *That* would keep
> suspense up <g> I'd love to see the early part of the
> Union story line (Crucians discover Telik and Franos via a closed WP, 
> allowing the three races to escape the Bugs even though both Telik and

> Franos were lost) turned into a novel, too.

Then you may be in luck.  The below was posted by Fred Burton to the 
Starfire discussion list around mid-June.


A New Project Announcement
Today, Starfire Design Studio is pleased to announce the start of a 
major new project. This project will be lead by myself, Fred Burton, 
with the blessings and close assistance of SDS owner Marvin Lamb. The 
goal of this project will be nothing less than to revive, recreate, and 
re-imagine the 3rd edition of Starfire. In order to make a clean break 
from the past, I have chosen a bold, new name for this bold new project:

Cosmic Starfire
While I cannot release any details of Cosmic Starfire at this time, I 
will state upfront and for the record that this project will *not* be an

attempt to pull together all of the old 3rd edition rules from the 
various original source documents into a single merged document. 
Instead, Cosmic Starfire will be a nearly entirely new product that will

draw on the lessons learned from all editions of Starfire, but will not 
skimp in the slightest on the history and flavor of the Starfire

Furthermore, this project will not simply be about producing a single 
set of tactical and strategic rules. In addition to Cosmic Starfire's 
core rules, I also plan to include a new historical conflict, the First 
Crucian-Arachnid War. The 1st CAW takes place about 100 years prior to 
the Fourth Interstellar War, but is much smaller in scale and (pretty 
obviously) lower in tech level.

But the plan doesn't end there. It is my hope and desire to use Cosmic 
Starfire as the foundation for a new series of historical modules that 
will depict the events and conflicts of a new and ever dangerous region 
of the galaxy known as The Expanse and the mysterious new races within, 
as well as some familiar races, the Star Union and the Zarkolyan Empire.

For those who are concerned about how Cosmic Starfire will be true to 
the spirit of 3rd edition if I am not working forward from all of the 
original source material, never fear. Marvin and I have a plan that we 
are confident will be able to produce a Cosmic Starfire product that can

proudly carry on the classic Starfire tradition. Will we be able to 
satisfy everyone? Probably not. However, it is the goal of Cosmic 
Starfire to satisfy the widest possible cross-section of the 3rd edition

fans and possibly … hopefully even fans of Galactic and Ultra.

Cosmic will include the vast majority of the weapons and tech systems 
with which 3e fans are so familiar. I will not commit to "all" because 
another of Cosmic's goals is the simplification and stream-lining of the

rules. (More on this below.) It is an accepted fact and operating 
assumption of Cosmic that 3rd edition-style technical systems and 
weapons do not and will not possess the same type of game balance as is 
present in the tech systems and weapons of GSF and Ultra. This is not to

say that there won't be a modicum of balance. For example (an extreme 
example), you shouldn't be expecting to see Capital Missiles doing 10 
points of damage at TL5. Furthermore, one can expect that some 
"revolutionary" weapon systems will continue appear from time to time 
that can radically change the balance of power in a campaign.

Additionally, new technical systems and weapons will be added to the 
overall tech mix to widen the options available, that at times may 
mitigate the feeling that some revolutionary weapons are the only path 
to victory. For example, one not exactly new area of technology that 
will be included in Cosmic is kinetics. Another area of new technology 
will be uncharged (as opposed charged particle beam weapons, aka the 
Energy Beam) particle beam weapons, starting right at TL1.

One of the primary goals of Cosmic will be some simplification and 
stream-lining of the rules. Do not take this to mean "dumbing down" or 
lowering Cosmic to the much lower level of detail present in the SDS 
product Admiral's Challenge. What we mean is that there are places in 
the rules where a high level of detail is "purchased" at the "cost" of a

level of complexity that is not justified by the "value-add" of the 
detail. (If that sounds like mumbo-jumbo to anyone reading this, I'll 
try to explain the concept in greater detail later.)

I know that R&D rules are a sore subject for 3e fans. It is my intention

to produce a clean new set of R&D rules that players will enjoy using. 
However, don't bother asking me what those changes are at this time. I 
truly do not know what those changes will look like at this point. (A 
mild word of warning. You may have noted that I constantly use the old 
3e nomenclature of "TL". Do not take this as any sort of signal. It's 
nothing more than my 3e inertia speaking. But on the flipside, also do 
not take this admission as any sort of signal of intent in the other 

For those of you who may not know me, my name is Fred Burton, and I was 
one of Dave Weber's trusted minions during his time working on the 2nd 
and 3rd editions of Starfire, and I suppose you might say, an uncredited

heavy contributor to ISW-4, as well as the creator of the Star Union and

Zarkolyan Empire, and numerous other contributions, such as the Laser 
Torpedo and the 2nd Generation Standard Missile. I am an unabashed and 
unrepentant fan of 3rd edition and its rich history and background. And 
it is my goal to bring that rich and glorious history back to Starfire!


Also for the record, please do NOT consider this any sort of product 
release announcement, or ask Marvin "Are we there yet?" This project 
will take some time.


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