GURPS Tales of the Solar Patrol cover

GURPS Tales of the Solar Patrol is based on the films, stories, comic books, and radio shows of the 1930s to the 1950s. It starts with Buck Rogers (1928) and ends with Forbidden Planet (1956) or the launch of Sputnik (1957)


Set in 2056, the world of the Solar Patrol is black and white with no shades of gray.

The focus is on young people in their 20s who may have young sidekicks of their own. Cartoons like Space Ghost serve as excellent baselines for the morality of the setting.

Hard Science and Silly ScienceEdit

The Solar Patrol setting doesn't pay too much to attention to scientific fact. For example Mars and Venus may be where they should be but they are more like their Steampunk or Dieselpunk counterparts then anything that exists in our world.

A Populated SystemEdit

The solar system is firmly in planetary romance mode:

  • Mars has canals with a psionic master race ruling several subject races.
  • Venus is a planet wide swamp filled with dinosaurs and two non-human sentient species.
  • The Moon (Luna) while lifeless on the surface has caverns filled with air and water far below its surface but these are devoid of life
  • Mercury has a “shadow zone” between its sun side and the eternally frozen night side where life is possible.
  • The Galilean moons of Jupiter are inhabited and ruled by the enigmatic Jovian Overlord.

Variant ConceptsEdit

The World of the PatrolEdit

  • Timeline (partial)
  • 1943: funding issues results in ENIAC not being invented.
  • 1945: Bell Labs doesn't invent the transistor[1]
  • 1956-1964: all efforts to get a satellites into orbit fail.
  • 1964: Westinghouse researchers find information on the Tesla coil, which draws energy from the ether of space[2]. This results in the electron drive being invented in 1966.
  • Inhabited Worlds: Mercury, Venus, Earth, Luna, Mars, Asteroids (the Belt), Jupiter and Its Moons
  • The Red Hive: A counter culture terrorist group who using the ideas of Nietzsche and Marx desire a society where the strong rules the weak.


Technology is TL(6+3); Tesla Coil TL(6+1)^

For earlier periods

  • TL(6+1) in 1970
  • TL(6+2) in 2010 (end of the First Solar War)
  • TL(6+3) in 2050

Technology notes

  • Tesla Coils have a range limit: orbit of Jupiter
  • While called atomic, guns are powered by aether not atomic energy.


  • Space Suits
  • Weapons
  • Spaceships


  • Archetypes: Solar Patrol, Space Marines, Traders, Pirates.
  • Templates: Solar Patrolman, Patrol Cadet, Scientist, Engineer, Pirate, Trader, Callistan Warrior, Belter, Explorer

Campaigns and Plot HooksEdit

  • Patrol Cadets
  • The Solar Patrol
  • Pirates
  • Second Solar War
  • Traders
  • Space Marines


  • Books
  • DVDs (I've added information to make these easier to find)
  • Buck Rogers serials
  • Captain Video: Cliffhanger Collection[4]
  • Flash Gordon: Box Set (Ford Beebe, director, 1936-1940). ASIN: B00004Y2QO
  • Rocky Jones, Space Ranger Collection (Hollingsworth Morse, director, 1954). ASIN: B000E3L7MS
  • Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow (2004) ASIN: B0006IIPIK
  • Websites


  1. This ignores the fact that the 1947 transistor was based on a 1934 patent by German physicist Dr. Oskar Heil and that German physicists Herbert F. Mataré and Heinrich Welker independently invented the transistor going public August 1948
  2. This is different from the real life Tesla coil which is powered by electricity.
  3. It should be mentioned that Anthony “Buck" Rogers' appearance in Armageddon 2419 A.D. which is in the public domain.
  4. Of the 1,537 episodes broadcast only 24 still exist