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  • I used to run games of Cyberpunk 2020 back in the 90's, and back then it all seemed strangely plausible. Its interesting the predictions they made about technology thirty years into the future. Some things have failed to come to pass, such as the virtual reality internet which is still mostly hypothetical. In our games though none of us predicted that mobile / cellular phones would become so common and develop into pocket computers of their own. And I read the other day about advances in technology allowing amputees to use brain signals to control artifical arms. So some of the technology predictions were not as far fetched as they might seem.
    One thing which you have not mentioned that was as big an influence as the literature of the genre was the rise in Cyberpunk style movies in the 90's. Films like Terminator, Aliens, Robocop, Blade Runner and others had a great influence on my games. Players would imitate characters from the movies, and even directly use quotes from them.
    As I and my brother (younger) were growing up in rural Mississippi, we needed games to while away the time. When we went to my grandmother's especially (while my mother did my grandmother's hair), we would play story games. We'd make up the stories in our heads and answer to "what do you do?"; but, sometimes, I would have him pick a number. He never knew whether it would be good to go high or low; so, it was random enough for us. And, it really did affect change in the story. One was about these brothers who were given high technology to use by aliens (kind of similar to Green Lantern). Another was about a man who investigated a fallen star and gained super powers. He had to hide the fallen alien artifact, because everyone who came near it would gain super powers. Etc.
    I like it. As you said, it gives players a sort of Star Trek adventuring setup (Gene Roddenberry was inspired in part by the Horatio Hornblower novels) in a historical setting that lets them be the good guys without any politically correct hem-hawing. Now where did I put those charts? It's time to weigh anchor!
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