Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Cyberpunk 2020

As part of the RPG history project mentioned on RPG.net, I began scanning in the covers of some of my RPG collection, beginning with my Cyberpunk 2020 books. Let me share them with you:

Cyberpunk 2020 was the main rulebook. It was an upgraded system and updated setting, essentially requiring the players of the original game -- Cyberpunk -- to buy the latest and greatest version of the game. Oddly enough, this did dovetail into the proposed cyberpunk ethos of style over substance and jumping headfirst into the latest developments ready to ride out any difficulties that might come up.

To be fair, it was a sight better than the Cyberpunk boxed set's rulebooks (certainly dated by today's standards), and the modifications to the system did speed up combat. Building a character was often a pain, though, because in addition to buying gear, you also had the option to buy cybernetics -- taking care not to use up your humanity and go cyberpsycho of course.

In addition to the core rulebook, R.Talsorian came out with new equipment and cybernetics in the form of the Chromebooks -- gear books with pictures for each of the items listed. Not satisfied with this revolutionary bit of sourcebook detail, they also came up with a rationale for it: these are the catalogs of the latest gear that people would order in game (ignoring all the game stats, of course).

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