Tuesday, March 19, 2013

"The Spur" The Best "Post Apocalyptic Space Opera Western" Book You've Never Heard Of

According to Mark Ellis : In THE SPUR: LOKI'S ROCK, the most important piece of the Offworld Ops team's equipment is AMBLER, a modified armored personnel carrier. Powered by a six-hundred horsepower drive train, AMBLER is designed to withstand nuclear, biological and environmental threats--and there are plenty of those on the planet LOKI.

The Spur is the new 
"Post Apocalyptic Space Opera Western" that comes from the pen of Mark Ellis. Yes the same gentleman whose done the Outlanders series.  I already know quite a bit about this universe. You see back in the 80's I was regularly reading Space Hawk during the black and white comic book fad.  Death Hawk was a  space western and so was Star Rangers.

The Spur : Loki's Rock is ever so familiar to me. The plot reads just like something from a B movie space western that has never been made and that's a good thing.

The Plot according to Amazon: 

The colony world in the Orion Spur known as Loki wasn't so much lost as forgotten. In the 188 years since a world-wide catastrophe destroyed what passed for civilization there, Loki had become a savage wilderness of strange cultures, as well as being the sanctuary for every bizarre cult, mad sect and outlawed scientific discipline in the Sol 9 Commonwealth. 

Quentin Crockett, a Colonel in the department of OffWorld Operations leads a team of specialists to Loki to monitor, catalog, and if necessary, eliminate the myriad societies that sprang up in the wake of the global cataclysm. In their armored ACP Ambler, the team travels Loki, searching for the lost Terran Enclave, while fighting off not only wild beasts, and the wilder natives but also the ruthless schemes of a mastermind about whom they know practically nothing. 

In The Spur: Loki’s Rock, Crockett and his team contend with the bizarre native fauna, but also with resurrected Nazi supermen, flocks of flying piranha, and the denizens of the kill-crazy town of Loki’s Rock, led by the psychotic Django Bonner and his bloodthirsty hench-wench, Pagan. 

The OFFWORLD OPS crew, from Left to Right: DR. QUANAH PARKER, Comanche medic, DR. ALEXIS ELGIN-JONES, Scientific Intel Officer, COLONEL QUENTIN CROCKETT, Commander, MR. SYNE, a Transhuman and ZEDA, a Gypsy girl with a mysterious past.

Photo: In THE SPUR: LOKI'S ROCK, the Offworld Ops team contend not only with monstrosities like shreekwings (basically piranha with wings), but with DJANGO BONNER, leader of the kill-crazy town of Loki's Rock and a telepathic gunman.
The Offworld Ops team contend not only with monstrosities like shreekwings (basically piranha with wings), but with DJANGO BONNER, leader of the kill-crazy town of Loki's Rock and a telepathic gunman.

Its stuff like this that had me excited about the Spur 

Gaming in The Spur 

The fact is the "Spur" is perfect for those times when the "Firefly" setting has lost its luster and your players need something slightly different. Any of the Space Fantasy retroclones can easily deal with the setting. If you don't have access to one. Then either TSR's Boot Hill and Gamma World 1st edition. Or Mutant Future and Gamma World will allow you to access the Post Apocalyptic Interstellar Western goodness with little problem.
The characters in the book are drawn from a million western movies stranded through the collective unconsciousness of humanity. But this is a good thing. Its very easy to put together anything character wise in the tradition of Fire Fly or Gamma World  in this. Monsters are easily pulled from a wide variety of sources and DM's shouldn't be afraid to add what they'd like. Anything can be encountered in the Spur.
 The Spur is a very dangerous setting and reading the book makes the action seem almost non stop. Not bad for a three dollar Kindle book.
 This is only book in what I hope will be an on going series.
You can buy the book right 

There's even a facebook group for the book right over HERE


  1. This sounds like a fun read. I've been kicking around some old ideas for a space western, so this is pretty timely. From the sounds of things it wouldn't take a whole lot of effort to revamp Mutant Future and you'd be good to go...

  2. First of all welcome back Garrison Jones! And yeah its a very fun read.I don't think that its really hard at all to convert the setting and add Mutant Future. Its a great step up from the usual Firefly stuff. Thanks for the great comments and welcome back.

  3. Sounds awesome, adding it to my reading list!

  4. We've got more Mark Ellis inspired goodness coming up over the weekend. You haven't seen nothing yet. There's some completely new stuff he's doing that will sort of blow your socks off.


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