I took a long time to come around to GURPS (the Generic Universal Role Playing System). Steve Jackson did his level best to make me not want to by his product. This may require some back story.

It certainly wasn’t the first product of his in which I had shown an interest. I was an avid fan of Car Wars and had most of the original “pocket sets” back when such things existed. Car Wars, Truck Stop, Crash City, Midville and a variety of Uncle Al’s guides graced my collection and my original group played several rounds of the game.

Steve had, it seemed, a hatred of my hometown, though and frankly this pissed me off. I hailed from Indianapolis, you see, and Steve had the town nuked by terrorists. The town that up through the 80’s was known for little else than racing had been nuked out of existence. That made about as little sense to me as anything could at the time and well my response was to not buy any of his crap for several years. Considering how much of my money went to gaming books, I figured I was denying him a significant market share of the industry at the time. Ask my now-retired pusher, I mean game store owner. He’ll attest to the amount of his kids’ college for which I paid.

I was lulled after many years to actually play GURPS Supers, although I still refused to by the book, and then I was slowly conned into playing in a GURPS Fantasy campaign, both I now consider among the best campaigns in which I ever played. Still, I was very slow, almost a decade in, in acquiring my first GURPS book. It was well into Third Edition before I acquired the Basic book and Compendiums.

It was about this time, I think, that Steve heard I was buying his books, because realizing he couldn’t have such a thing, he committed his second atrocity in my eyes. I have spoken before of the release of GURPS Traveller. I have also spoken about how furious I was that MegaTraveller and Traveller: New Era were being tossed aside in favor of his desire and Marc Miller’s to see the bloated Imperium campaign continue.

I was livid and again I delayed in acquiring his products. In time, I forgave and began my 3rd Edition collection, although about a third of my collection consists of $5 specials from GenCon as 3rd Edition was phased out and 4th was phased in. I’ve purchased one 4th Ed. book (Traveller: Interstellar Wars), but refuse to buy all the others again. I’ve already done that with other systems (bought the same book with revisions umpteen times) and I think I’ve finally reached my limit with GURPS. That or I still haven’t forgiven the son of a bitch completely. 🙂