Inspiration

 

 

 

Writing

 

Some authors I enjoy and would recommend to others:

 

Peter F Hamilton

Possibly the best sci-fi author in the Western world, well in my opinion anyway. His two main series are the Nights dawn trilogy (quite good) and the excellent Greg Mandel series (Mindstar Rising, A Quantum Murder and The Nano Flower). My Urban Myth RPG draws a lot from the Greg Mandel books.

 

Simon R Green

Author of the Deathstalker series, the Hawk & Fisher books and some other stand alone novels (including Blood & Honour, Down among the dead men and Blue Moon Rising). An excellent writer, although he does have a habit of over-using certain stock phrases.

 

Jack Vance

I am not a great fan of his Dying Earth stories but loved the Demon princes books.

 

Eric S Nylund

I would particularly recommend ĎA game of Universeí which I think is probably the best book I have ever read. One of these days I will get round to writing an RPG

based on it.

 

Film

Some inspirational films include:

 

Blade Runner: just an all round brilliant film. Ridley Scott on top form.

The Last Unicorn: an animated film based on the Peter S Beagle book. Fantastic.

Aliens: I have chosen this over the other films in the series because I am a gun bunny at heart J

The Haunting (original version): very scary if watched late at night on your own.

Count of Monte Cristo (French TV adaptation starring Gerard Depardieu): about 9 hrs long.. easily the best adaptation of this excellent book.

Star Wars: an excellent film, even watching it now the death star trench battle raises the hairs on my neck.

Empire Strikes Back: a totally different feel to Star Wars and it complements it perfectly.

Star Trek II- The Wrath of Khan: head and shoulders above any other star trek movie.. the Reliant / Enterprise dogfights show space battles as they should be done.

Forbidden Planet: Wow!!! It just doesnít age.

Blade: the opening sequence in the Ďbloodí disco is probably one of the best scenes I have ever seen in a film. Itís worth the price of admission for this one bit alone.

The Legend of Bagger Vance: a great film, very understated and undersold. Will Smith is very good.

 

 

Games

 

My own game collection is pretty extensive. These are some of my favourites & why.

 

Amazing Engine: weapons in amazing engine have a damage value and a lethality value. When you hit with a weapon you compare the d100 units die of the attack roll to the weapons lethality to determine if it causes Stamina (Stun) damage or Body (Lethal) damage. This is a fantastic mechanic.

 

DC Heroes: DC heroes best feature, imho, is the AP system for determining the relationship between characters attributes and the real world. I started work on a Sci-Fi game using a system loosely based on DC Heroes here. The Empire game I am currently working on uses, at least in my opinion, an improved exponential system which draws from DC Heroes, Nexus & Feng Shui, amongst other sources.

 

Ringworld: the mechanics for handling variable knives and flashlight lasers work excellently. Its action/initiative system also works very well.

 

Living Steel: the way that hit location is the most important factor by far in damage effects is great. The damage system in Urban Myth draws from this.

 

Maelstrom: a fantastic single book game which came out in the mid 80ís. One of its best features was the handling of damage by dividing it into wounds & endurance damage which worked inwards to meet in the middle.

 

Sovereign Stone (non-d20): the worst mistake the author made was to move a d20 based system. The original system used polyhedral dice and was superbly quick and easy to play. I have a number of variant backgrounds and associated rule mods zipped up here. I donít actually think much of the game background, just love the mechanics.

 

Elric (non-d20): in my opinion probably the best of the basic role playing system rules sets produced by Chaosium.

 

Call of Cthulu: what a strange idea for a game.. but didnít it work well. Part of the fun is the disposability of characters.. you never expect them to last more than a few sessions which makes it good.