Wednesday, November 23, 2011

FASA Trek's prescience

Guy McLimore, Greg Poehlein, and David Tepool's Star Trek: The Role Playing Game (1982) had a lot of interesting points. While generally staying true to the Star Trek universe, it also emphasized some aspects that were more reminisent of Marc Miller's Traveller (1977). For example, the supplement Trader Captains and Merchant Princes (1983), which let players unleash their inner Harry Mudd. But in the equipment lists of that book was something remarkable, even uncanny. It came disguised as a simple description of a data storage card, or "computer cart."

The text seems to be describing a standard memory tape, but look at the illustration. Look familiar? That's no memory tape, it's a USB flash drive.

But flash drives weren't around until c. 2000 CE, eighteen years after that game was published. This is highly illogical. Is it a clue planted by a time traveler, as in Asimov's The End of Eternity? Did the game designers have precognitive abilities? What's going on here?

No comments: