noisms' post yesterday about an Alternative History for a CP2020 campaign reminded me of an abandoned idea I once had for a VSF/Steampunk Mekton Z campaign.
It all started when I got a copy of Columbia Game's HarnWorld, "A Real Fantasy World." (I'm not sure what possessed me to buy it. I think it was some kind of promotional deal. After all, I've never played HarnMaster, although I've heard good things about it.) It's an atlas comprehensively detailing the imaginary planet of Kethira and it's solar system. The style in which it's presented is very modern, and not at all reminiscent of a medieval book. This, and the fact the the Kethira's continents bear a vague resemblance to Earth's continents, got me thinking that it would be great as a parallel world setting.
In particular I decided to use it for a VSF/Steampunk world of rival 19th century-style empires, using Mekton's MTS to design zeppelins, land juggernauts (giant tanks), boilerplate mecha -- all the usual trappings. (Come to think of it, this is one setting in which the lumbering, overheating 'mechs of BattleTech would be right at home.) The PCs would be members of the Ironclad Dragoons, fighting Prussian-esque blackguards, pseudo-Tsarist scoundrels, and uncovering the blood soaked truth of their own kingdom's conquests.
Not terribly original, I know. And it was all for nought, because I couldn't get any players interested. But I still find it appealing.