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The Best SF RPG Web Sites
by James Maliszewski
You can tell that the World Wide Web has come of age and joined the ranks of the "respectable" media by the fact that about 95% of it is utter garbage. As depressing as that sounds, that still leaves a very healthy 5% to make up for the rest.
That's where this feature of RPGnet's Science Fiction Corner comes in. Here, I will showcase some of the very best websites devoted to specific SF RPGs that I have been able to find. In each case, I'll include not only a link, but a brief explanation of why I believe the site to be worthy of inclusion on this page. In most instances, I'll include only one site for each SF RPG. My intention is not to produce a huge hot list of every site devoted to SF roleplaying; there are already plenty of those. Rather, I hope to give credit to those who have furthered the cause of science fiction gaming through the medium of the Web. I also want to share these fine sites with the readers of the SF Corner.
In this great endeavor, RPGnet's readers can assist me. Even if I wasted even more hours on the Web than I already do (apologies to my wife, friends, and thesis committee!), I could never find all the sites worthy of being placed on this page. Furthermore, there are many game systems with which I am not very familiar and, therefore, could not judge the relative value of the sites devoted to them.
To that end, I encourage readers of the Science Fiction Corner to submit their own candidates for best SF RPG web site to me using the e-mail link above. Feel free to suggest alternate sites for the games I've already placed here (I can and do change my mind, if convinced) as well as sites for games that I have overlooked. Included along with the links below are some of the most obvious SF RPGs for which I have not included links. Don't feel bound by my own myopia. If you can add something that I have forgotten, by all means do so!
2300 AD: Pentapod's World
Although both GDW and 2300 AD are now defunct, this site reminded me why I ever found either compelling. The site is not very pretty, but it's well-organized and contains a wealth of information on this game's vision of the dawn of the 24th century. Almost makes me want to dig out my copy and try playing the game again. Then, I remember the Kafers and am quickly cured of my malady.
Alternity is a relatively new game, but there are already quite a few sites devoted to it. One of the best is this site, not because of its snazzy graphics or cool layout, but because it includes lots of worthwhile information and links to other sites. It's also one of the few general Alternity sites, as opposed to the many others dedicated to some guy's hokey homebrew SF setting. If you're at all intrigued by Alternity, you might want to take a look.
Babylon Project: Babylon
This is an excellent site that gives GMs of Chameleon Eclectic's B5 RPG plenty of material to add to their own campaigns. The site is also very attractive and easy to navigate. If only Chameleon Eclectic supported its SF RPG as well as this site, it might be more visible in the gaming industry.
Fading Suns: Fading Suns Homepage
This site is just wonderful! Not only does it include piles of alternate rules, adventures, equipment, aliens, and setting information but it also serves as the archive for the FS Mailing List. No Fading Suns GM could want anything more in a website. By far, this is one of my favorite of all SF RPG sites, if only because its content to noise ratio is quite large compared to most sites you'll find.
Heavy Gear & Jovian Chronicles: EXO-Gear: The Online Jovian Chronicles
and Heavy Gear Gaming Fanzine
This attractive fanzine contains a great deal of useful material and has a look that captures much of the feel of the games to which it is devoted.
This is another site devoted to a defunct game by a (possibly) defunct company, but I thought it was too nifty to pass up. There's a lot of useful information here for players and GMs looking to run games in West End's other SF RPG. The UIX has recently been updated and there's a promise of some very interesting material to come later this year.
Star Trek: The Next Generation: The STTNG RPG Homepage
Last Unicorn's great new TNG game has only been available for a short time now, but there's already a terrific resource for Narrators looking for new material. This site is rather nice looking and collects in one place some of the best material from the LUGTrek Mailing List.
Traveller: Traveller - Science Fiction Adventure in
the Far Future
Yet another site devoted to a defunct game (well, probably) by a couple of defunct companies. It includes links and information for every incarnation of this venerable SF institution. With this site as a guide, I doubt that a Traveller aficionado would lack for anything on the Web.
Trinity: The Trinity OpNet
This is an attractive site with lots of links and information for White Wolf's latest game. I'm not a big fan of Trinity, as some of you may know, but this site is very well-done and I expect would serve the game's partisans well. If I'm wrong, suggest another one. I'm open to alternatives.