In this blog post, I try to describe where I come from Traveller-wise and why I prefer certain editions of the game. Also, this post is about the rules, no the setting (which will be covered in a separate post).
I started out as a player in a Classic Traveller game (but at that time it was the only version of Traveller). My buddy had the original small box with 3 LBBs. When I got my own set I opted for the big Deluxe box with the extra Book 0!! The early Traveller had no setting info, even if the Deluxe box had a map of something called The Spinward Marches and some hints of an Imperium was given in Book 0. I ended up using the map and system names but generated my own data and so on. We had great fun, but Traveller never caught my fascination like D&D or RuneQuest and I ended up selling my stuff to my friend Johan who then became our new Traveller GM, and went from GM to a player, where I’ve remained since then. Johan bought all the LBBs and when MegaTraveller came out in 1987 we switched to that system. We played a lot of MegaTraveller and it was at this time I felt that Traveller had grown to something I really liked. I also got Traveller: 2300/2300AD myself and GM: ed that for some time.
So, MegaTraveller is the Traveller version that I came to like and the one I much prefer to this day, despite errata problems. When Traveller: The New Era came out we never got on that train but I GM: ed a lot of 2300AD, Twilight: 2000 and some Dark Conspiracy in that period and was quite happy with the GDW House System as it was called.
In 2005-2006 I was in a really crappy marriage quickly nearing a divorce and for pure escapism, I started reading and following Traveller and 2300AD online and ended up buying a complete collection of T4 for a very reasonable sum. It was Traveller alright, but T4 never felt quite right and I got a copy of Traveller: The New Era and was literally blown out of orbit.
OK, it wasn’t Old School 2D6 Traveller, but the flavor was soo cool and the rules logical and complete.
Then, in 2008 Mongoose Traveller happened. I got the Core rules and many of the splatbooks but never quite liked the game, so I sold/swapped it for some other game stuff. Which I kind of regret now. The Mongoose Traveller rules are good, but a bit bland in my opinion. The big advantage is that they are in print and that they have an OGL meaning I can write and publish things for the system. Also, the online SRD is a thing of beauty and I see many advantages of using MgT or it’s successor MgT 2nd edition.
So in conclusion: MegaTraveller and Traveller: TNE are definitely my favorite Traveller iterations. But Mongoose Traveller has the advantage of being a living system with an OGL and an online SRD. It also has another huge advantage in that the new 2300AD line from Mongoose also uses the same rules. So by using Mongoose Traveller, I can play both Traveller and 2300AD and that is very cool.
At this point, I think I will use the Mongoose Traveller rules for starters, going with the 2nd edition of the game as it would be silly to invest in 1st edition stuff at this point.