Monday, March 19, 2012

Maintaining the Datafort

Greetings Programs,

Ok, so here I am... Wisdom000, or as real people know me, Deric Bernier.  I have run the Cyberpunk 2020 based role-playing game website, Datafortress 2020, since 1996 (Christ thats a long time and now I feel old) when I took it over from Paul Minor.

What originally started out as a relatively small website has become the single largest source of original material on the net for the game, as well as hosting the largest archive of Cyberpunk 2020 material in the world, gathering all the relevant material from nearly every website for the game that ever existed

Of course long before I took over for Paul I had been playing the game.  While I had some brief encounters with roleplaying games in the 80's with Dungeons and Dragons, it wasn't the best of experiences and it kind of soured me for years.  I aquired several gaming books over the years, but it was mostly for the art or the ideas behind them, as I didn't really have anyone to play with.  I did however start creating rules for them even before I really understood what RPG's were... when my brother and I used dice to decide the outcome of our elaborately staged action figure battles.  Finally, after years of avioding Dungeons and Dragons, a friend convinved me to play with him... so I spent a long night before the game with him making up a character... and then when I showed up to play,it wasn't DnD, but Cyberpunk.  I thought "What the hell", I came all that way, might as well play it.  Christ... that was 1989, and I haven't looked back since... the game became such an obsession with me, that it was ten years before I even attempted to run anything else.  Oh I played in a few other games, but nothing ever hit me as close to home.  Now, since the millenium change I have branched out quite a bit but after the oughts, I decided I was really, at heart, a one system kind of guy... other settings still held interest for me, but no other set of rules really encapsulated what I wanted as well as Interlock.

I have written a lot of material for this game over the years, several full sourcebooks, tons of weapons, gadgets, and other goodies.  I have created maps, character sheets, and endless other fiddly bits and compilations.  I spend hours searching for images to use with the articles, every awesome vehicle, weapon, or piece of tech from any film, cartoon, tv show, comic book, or whatever, that could be remotely believable in a Cyberpunk 2020 setting can be found, statted up, somewhere on my site.  And sometimes I draw them myself... in addition to drawing every PC that has ever been played in one of my games.

A few years ago, after 15 years of playing the game, I realized that I had changed, replaced, or added so many rules to the core Cyberpunk 2020 rules system of Interlock, that I could kinda re-write it... especially with the combined knowledge of the View From The Edge Cyberpunk forum, as well as some of the old school website owners I am proud to call my friends.  So after getting permission and brainstorming, I embarked on my biggest project to date... re-writing the rules for Interlock.

The goal was simple, not only repair and expand the rules that were broken or didn't cover everything, but streamline them and add new rules to cover the situations left unexamined.  In addition, the goal was to make Interlock a Universal system, that could handle any setting, any concept...

What I, with the help of many contributors and friends, came up with, was Interlock Unlimited.  A living evolving system, one that does everything I need it to do, and if a situation arises that it can't handle, rules are created and added so that it can.  I am not quite sure how many people use it, the truth is Cyberpunk 2020 is a dying setting, even though it was far more popular than its successor Cyberpunk v3 (which changed the rules to Fuzion, a hybrid of Interlock and Hero) and still has a shrinking but diehard fanbase, there is no official support for the game.  I do know that its been favorably reviewed on several blogs, its frequently suggested on RPGnet and other forums, it was the subject of a Sideways Tower podcast.  I get a lot of e-mails about it as well.  Unfortunately, I can't really look at the dowload numbers for it as being anything representative of its popularity.  I mean the numbers say its been downloaded over 3000 times... but the thing is, Interlock Unlimited is an evolving system, the core rules have been changed several times, so I don't know how many people are downloading it each time its updated, or downloading it once, or what...

I do hope that the people who have downloaded it are enjoying it.  Interlock Unlimited is a fan project, by fans, for fans... and while it operates with the unofficial but public blessing of Mike Pondsmith, owner of R.Talsorian games, creator of Cyberpunk 2020, it is something I give away for free out of love for the game and its potential.

Anyway, thats who I am and why I do what I do... as for this blog... Blame my friend from VFTE and longtime contributor Companero.  He suggested this blog, saying it would be a good way to get attention for the site, Interlock Unlimited, and Cyberpunk in general.  So here I am.

I am not going to promise to update this place regularly, I am not going to even hint at anything remotely resembling a schedule... what I am going to do is use this as a sounding board for  Cyberpunk 2020 and Interlock Unlimited  projects I am working on for Datafortress 2020, opinions about cyberpunk related entertainment like movies and comics, general gaming insights, rants, raves, and whatever other wierdness I feel like posting... I will try to keep it mostly gaming related however. I will post whenever the mood strikes me, that way it won't ever feel like work or a duty...

I freely encourage discussion on anything I post, the more feedback I get the better I get... so don't be afraid to rant back.  Sure there are the Datafortress 2020 forums, which you are all encouraged to join, but send me an e-mail if you want to register.  Due to the mamoth deluge of spam I get everytime I open registration, I generally only do so if I know an actual human being who plays the game wants to join... the e-mail to reach me at for registration is wisdom000 at gmail.  Feel free to write me there about anything connected to gaming, the site, or just to tell me I am sexy.

Anyway, to anyone who has made it this far, thanks, and I hope this works out.  Forgive any typos, and have a nice day...

Oh and be sure to visit Datafortress 2020, the largest most comprehensive Cyberpunk 2020 site in the world at:
Also be sure to check out the Datafortress 2020 File Project, which is home to PDF and other downloadable file versions of all my material, the Interlock Unlimited Files, the Cyberpunk 2020 Archive (largest archive of Cyberpunk 2020 material available), and my personal art gallery at:
And if you want to join in the discussions, check out the Datafortress 2020 Forums, be sure to send me an e-mail if you want to join and I will open up registration long enough for you to get in...

1 comment:

  1. So now you have a blog, uh? Nice.

    I have been following Datafortress for a long time ... still remember when the net was full of other sites about Cyberpunk 2020.

    And seeing them disappear one by one was a pain ... but DF2020 has always been here.

    And hope always be.

    PD: And since day 2, I always thought the site needed a visual remake XD