The first edition of Traveller was released in 1977. Its central themes of interstellar travel, trade, and warfare caught on and it went on to become the de facto science fiction RPG.
Since then it has undergone several revisions, including the massive 655-page Traveller5: The Ultimate Edition. The most current version, published by Mongoose Publishing, is much more accessible to Traveller neophytes. That is the version discussed here. Note that a new revised Traveller5 is being Kickstarted and is due for delivery in the second half of 2019.
In Traveller characters go through a series of careers, accumulating skills along the way, before they enter play. The game mechanics rely on a straightforward d6-based system.
While the default Third Imperium setting is used for many game supplements, the rules are generic. Referees (gamemasters) can easily create their own settings. The game is well-suited for campaign play with a hard SF flavor.
Three Things About Traveller
- The Original SF RPG: If you want to run a campaign built around the hard scifi of galaxy-spanning adventures, spaceship combat, and discovery.
- Simple Mechanics: The game uses d6 (‘normal’ dice) coupled with attribute and skill modifiers, which makes for streamlined task resolution.
- Back Catalogue: Many supplements were created for the original GDW edition of Traveller, and Mongoose has re-released several of them.
- “MGT2 too a look at those items, and flat out addressed them in an eloquent and effective manner, while introducing new and innovative ideas from the supplements that worked previously.” — Sam W, RPG.net