GURPS Cyberpunk and the Secret Service

Scott Tortorice

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#1
Just found this fascinating article on when the Secret Service raided Steve Jackson games:

http://www.cyberpunkreview.com/cyberpunk-history/steve-jackson-games-att-and-the-eff/

Today in Cyberpunk History (March 1, 1990): Early morning at Steve Jackson Games in Austin, Texas saw an invasion of US Secret Service agents seizing any system used for GURPS Cyberpunk RPG book. They were looking for “evidence” to convict one of SJ Games’s employees: One Loyd Blankenship, whose home was also raided. It wouldn’t be until October when SJ Games learned why they were raided as the warrant was sealed (You can view the warrant here).

Guilt by Association. The primary target of the raid was Loyd Blankenship, who was known in hacker circles as +++The Mentor+++, member of Legion of Doom. He also ran a BBS that distributed the hacker journal Phrack, that published the contents of a text file from Bell South that dealt with the 911 emergency response system in 1989. The file contained no schematics, no codes, no technical anything… it was only an administrative book that Bell South would sell to the public for $13 US. Yet it was feared that the file would be used by hackers to disrupt the 911 system, and Bell South claimed the posting caused 80 thousand dollars in damage.
I wonder if this is why the gaming industry has been so reticent to make cyberpunk/hacking themed games?
 

greuh

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#2
There has been a lot, since. With crappy/unrealistic mechanics at the time but it is to be noted that what happened prompted SJG to :
1/ help funding the Electronic Frontier Foundation
2/ release Hacker (and Hacker 2), a card game which was a good picture of hacking at the beginning of the 90s.

I question the "reticent", though !
Currently, "real" cyberpunk RPGs :
TechNoir
Remember Tomorrow
The Sprawl

Pseudo-cyberpunk :
Cyberpunk is currently in rehaul for year 2077 along with the upcoming computer game (with probably another tentative to bring the system to acceptable levels, something it has already failed three times)
Shadowrun (with its clunky system)

Transhuman :
Eclipse Phase (with a very very clunky system)

Post-cyber :
Underground (unavailable but might make a comeback powered by the apocalypse)

Disappeared (cyber/postcyber/H+/pseudo) :
Zaibatsu
Cybergeneration
Cyberspace
SLA Industries
Marid Audran
GURPS Cyberpunk (v1 &2)
CYB
A/State
Corporation
Ex Machina
GURPS Transhuman Space
And so many : http://www.legrog.org/themes/cyberpunk-anticipation (sorry, French website)
 

Aaron Cleavin

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#3
There has been a lot, since. With crappy/unrealistic mechanics at the time but it is to be noted that what happened prompted SJG to :
1/ help funding the Electronic Frontier Foundation
2/ release Hacker (and Hacker 2), a card game which was a good picture of hacking at the beginning of the 90s.

I question the "reticent", though !
Currently, "real" cyberpunk RPGs :
TechNoir
Remember Tomorrow
The Sprawl

Pseudo-cyberpunk :
Cyberpunk is currently in rehaul for year 2077 along with the upcoming computer game (with probably another tentative to bring the system to acceptable levels, something it has already failed three times)
Shadowrun (with its clunky system)

Transhuman :
Eclipse Phase (with a very very clunky system)

Post-cyber :
Underground (unavailable but might make a comeback powered by the apocalypse)

Disappeared (cyber/postcyber/H+/pseudo) :
Zaibatsu
Cybergeneration
Cyberspace
SLA Industries
Marid Audran
GURPS Cyberpunk (v1 &2)
CYB
A/State
Corporation
Ex Machina
GURPS Transhuman Space
And so many : http://www.legrog.org/themes/cyberpunk-anticipation (sorry, French website)
Paranoia!!!!