Spinward Marches Preview

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daryen
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Spinward Marches Preview

Postby daryen » Tue Jun 17, 2008 5:05 am

Looking at the Spinward Marches preview, everything looks pretty good until I got to the UWPs.

First, Andor is still spelled wrong. I know for a fact that was a specific line item that was supposed to be fixed.

Second, while not exactly elegant, I am to assume that the "I" in the "Remarks" is being used to mark the Imperial worlds? Personally, I think it would have been a lot more elegant to create an "Allegiance" column (like very UWP listing after Supplement 3), but it does work.

Again, except for the UWP listing, the preview looks tremendous. I am very much looking forward to seeing this finished!
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Postby fridge » Tue Jun 17, 2008 8:18 am

No stellar data either.
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Postby Gruffty the Hiver » Tue Jun 17, 2008 8:29 am

Yup, as described above - although I don't recall Mongoose ever saying stellar data would be in the basic WorldGen process (I suspect they're saving that for their "World Builder" book.
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Postby Infojunky » Tue Jun 17, 2008 8:51 am

I agree it would be better to establish a fixed position for the allegiance code. Heck I even kinda like leading the trade codes, just it needs a fixed place.

The fluff looks good, I have never been one to object to more fluff to feed my players.
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Postby Gruffty the Hiver » Tue Jun 17, 2008 10:22 am

There are already established positions for Trade Classifications, Remarks and Allegiance codes, as set out in the UWPs available on the 'net, GDW books/pdfs and on the various fora.
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Postby Stainless » Tue Jun 17, 2008 1:39 pm

The story I remember as it unfolded on the forums was that MJD was planning to update the UWPs to get rid of the ambiguities (at least the major ones), but grognards on a number of forums kicked up such an unreasoned stink that it got back to MWM, and he, in his usual display of slap-dash cognition, put a hold on any updates. All the UWP data in the SM supplement had to be 'original' (i.e., erroneous). A pity
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Postby The Greek » Tue Jun 17, 2008 1:59 pm

The UWPs in the book are a combination of original Supplement 3 and the Spinward Marches Campaign.

I think we managed to avoid leaving out any systems (and thus make a break with tradition). :wink:
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Postby Infojunky » Tue Jun 17, 2008 4:46 pm

Mongoose Acolyte wrote:The UWPs in the book are a combination of original Supplement 3 and the Spinward Marches Campaign.

I think we managed to avoid leaving out any systems (and thus make a break with tradition). :wink:
It's not weather or not you left anything out it is the presentation of your tables. In the PDF the columns don't line up past the TL code, depending on wether or not the allegiance code is included.

So really it's a matter of presentation, not content.
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Postby daryen » Tue Jun 17, 2008 6:02 pm

The UWPs are primarily from Supplement 3, with a few updated to the SMC. I disagree with a couple of the choices, but they are all defensible.

This book never was going to have stellar data in it. However, this is actually a good thing. The stellar data for the Spinward Marches is so bad and has changed so much over time, that dropping it from this book is probably an excellent idea.

BTW, I withdraw my comment about Andor/Andory. Apparently, that was not one of the items that MWM felt worth forwarding. That apparently means "Andory" is the name he wants used in this book. (I cannot fathom why, but it is his choice.)
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Postby Gruffty the Hiver » Tue Jun 17, 2008 7:45 pm

The stellar data for the Spinward Marches is so bad
Amen to that, brother! :o :D :D
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Postby The Greek » Wed Jun 18, 2008 12:58 pm

daryen wrote: BTW, I withdraw my comment about Andor/Andory. Apparently, that was not one of the items that MWM felt worth forwarding. That apparently means "Andory" is the name he wants used in this book. (I cannot fathom why, but it is his choice.)
I have to admit I went into 'Good grief - how did I miss that!' mode (to put it politely) when I read your first post. Was about to look at the list of things to change I was sent before I got to this post ('Phew - I did not mess up as bad as I thought' (put polite again)).

But, PHEW!

UWPs are a right pain to get right - there is just so many little things that can go wrong with a typo and these are difficult to spot. To be honest I would have prefered to keep Andor as well, it is a slightly annoying typo.
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Postby Bygoneyrs » Wed Jun 18, 2008 4:56 pm

Hey, any more word on WHEN Spinward Marshes will actually ship to US pre-Order folks?

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Postby daryen » Wed Jun 18, 2008 7:46 pm

Mongoose Acolyte wrote:But, PHEW!

UWPs are a right pain to get right - there is just so many little things that can go wrong with a typo and these are difficult to spot. To be honest I would have prefered to keep Andor as well, it is a slightly annoying typo.
Hey, I understand. I have to do a *lot* of checking for another game system, and there are many things where I look back and wonder how on earth I could have missed it.

The two "typo" items I was surprised he dropped were Andor/Andory and Romar/Romor. The first is surprising because the only other place "Andory" was used besides S3 was GT:BtC, and that became an errata item. The second is even more bizarre, because the map says "Romor", but the UWP says "Romar".

But at least all of the substantiative ones (i.e. numbers, not names) got fixed.
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Postby MJD » Thu Jun 19, 2008 12:26 am

Stainless is pretty much correct, though 'planning to update' is a bit strong for what we were doing (mild though it is). What we were doing was discussing what changes we might put forward.

The idea was for us to generate a list of suggested resolutions and fixes for various issues ranging from impossible astrophysics to changed data in different versions of the Marches. From that discussion our intention was to cull out a list of issues, suggested fixes and expected consequences.

Our intent was to put that list in front of Mongoose's traveller line editor who would then decide which to put forward to Marc. Marc would decide which ones he wanted, we'd be told, and in they'd go.

Nice theory.

(as an aside, I've written nearly two dozen books using this working practice for major packagers and publishers outside the games industry).

What then happened was just plain crazed. First a handful of people started arguing about whether I should be allowed to alter canon. It was just the usual forum arm-waving so I ignored it, other than a rather pointed comment to the effect that nobody had actually asked what I was doing, and much of the debate about what I should be allowed to do centered on things that had frankly been made up - ie things I wasn't doing and had no intention of doing.

None of these people bothered to ask what I was doing, they just went on with the shouting and arm-waving. In short, they'd invented something to get upset about and were too busy being upset to bother finding out if there was anything to be upset about.

Then suddenly Marc Miller stepped in. 'Someone' (he never told me who) had informed him that I was planning to slip uauthorised canon changes into the Marches book.

(Another aside - I write books for a living. My professional integrity means a bit more to me than getting my favourite fanboy fix into a Traveller book. Doing that would serve my client (mongoose) very poorly and perhaps devalue their product. That's not a good way to keep my career intact. In short, this accuastion is both unfounded and very insulting)

Anyway, Marc scotched all changes, alterations, fixes and whatnot based on this unknown person's assertion. So we used the UWP data straight from Supplement 3.

To my intense annoyance, I was later sent a list of desired fixes (coming from Marc) which included issues we'd flagged and wanted to ask permission to fix.

A couple of other things happened too, which I'm deeply unhappy about, but I'll try to keep it off the public boards. That's more than the people involved deserve.


At the end of the day, though, and despite this almighty spanner thrown by some unknown, possibly malicious, person or persons, we produced a really excellent book.

As always working with Mongoose was painless and on top of it all they'll actually pay the invoice I'm about to send in (which seems to be the exception in this industry). I'm mentioning this in case anyone thinks I'm criticising Mongoose here - I'm not. Quite the opposite. Apart from my own Avenger Enterprises, Mongoose are the only games company I'll work with.

Yup, Mongoose don't dick me around and they give me money, on time. I like Mongoose. I hear some of their games are quite good too.....
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Postby daryen » Thu Jun 19, 2008 3:40 am

MJD wrote:At the end of the day, though, and despite this almighty spanner thrown by some unknown, possibly malicious, person or persons, we produced a really excellent book.
I really want to stress this point. It really is a great book. It is an absolute wealth of information on the Imperium, the Spinward Marches, and various elements therein.

Martin did a wonderful job with it.
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Postby -Daniel- » Thu Jun 19, 2008 3:47 am

daryen wrote:
MJD wrote:At the end of the day, though, and despite this almighty spanner thrown by some unknown, possibly malicious, person or persons, we produced a really excellent book.
I really want to stress this point. It really is a great book. It is an absolute wealth of information on the Imperium, the Spinward Marches, and various elements therein.

Martin did a wonderful job with it.
Too bad the rest of us can't say the same thing because we have not seen it yet. :wink:

I do expect, based on other MJD products, that it will be as good a book as he was allowed to do.

Daniel
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Postby tneva82 » Thu Jun 19, 2008 4:59 am

daryen wrote:I really want to stress this point. It really is a great book. It is an absolute wealth of information on the Imperium, the Spinward Marches, and various elements therein.

Martin did a wonderful job with it.
Good to hear. Now when do we get our hands on it :twisted:

Can't wait to read it. My background information regarding OTU is bit thin so good background book is precicely what I'm looking for.
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Postby daryen » Thu Jun 19, 2008 1:11 pm

dafrca wrote:
Martin did a wonderful job with it.
Too bad the rest of us can't say the same thing because we have not seen it yet. :wink:
Fair enough. :) I admit that I was fortunate enough to get an early glimpse.

My point, though, is that no matter what minor quibbles I bring up, and whatever typoes annoy me, all of that pales in comparison to the book as a whole. I just want to make sure any of my negative comments don't obscure the value of the book as a whole.
Last edited by daryen on Thu Jun 19, 2008 3:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby -Daniel- » Thu Jun 19, 2008 3:01 pm

daryen wrote:
dafrca wrote:Too bad the rest of us can't say the same thing because we have not seen it yet. :wink:
Fair enough. :) I admit that I was fortunate enough to get an early glimpse.

My point, though, is that no matter what minor quibbles I bring up, and whatever typoes annoy me, all of that pales in comparison to the book as a whole. I just want to make sure any of my negative comments don't obscure the value of the book as a whole.
Oh I knew the point you were trying to make. I just was trying to be funny.
Once the whole blow up and no changes thing happened I knew there would be typos and clear errors and I knew MJD could not be held responsable for those. He tried to fix them and was undermined.

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Postby MJD » Thu Jun 19, 2008 3:44 pm

This might be a good time to mention that we (avenger/comstar) have a couple of adventures for Traveller due out very soon...

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