The Third Imperium Index

UMP: 234E6C-4

Version 1.05: Issues 1-11

by Shannon Appelcline

Overview

History: 1986-1988

The Third Imperium fanzine, created by Mike Jackson, proudly proclaimed itself first as "The West's Own Traveller Magazine" and then as "The Canadian Traveller Magazine", due to its location in Vancouver, British Columbia. (The latter would be the more memorable slogan and the one used for the majority of the magazine's run.)

Jackson founded Third Imperium because of the "very low number of Traveller magazines being published today", which was somewhat ironic because 1986 was one of the best years ever for Traveller fanzine production. Not only was Between Worlds (1985-1986) still in production at the time, but The Imperium Staple got its start immediately before Third Imperium (1986-1987) in March, and The Security Leak (1986-1988) would be founded as a newsletter at the end of the year. By the end of 1986, there were four fanzines running! (But Jackson would only have perhaps known about Between Worlds when he decided to publish.) Fit into that chronology, Third Imperium is likely the sixth of the major Traveller fanzines (and the fourth of the wave in the mid '80s and the first from Canada).

Third Imperium was founded very much in the style of the official Traveller magazines, High Passage (1981-1982) and Travellers' Digest (1985-1990). Each issue tended to reveal a new subsector (in the Trojan Reach), to set an adventure in that subsector, and to include other articles relevant to those features. In fact, the content was often entirely regularized, with equipment appearing on page 5, a related starship on pages 6-7, the subsector on pages 8-9, and the adventure starting on page 10!

More even than most fanzines, Third Imperium was the product of one creator: Mike Jackson. He was not only a prolific author, filling almost the entirety of his 'zines with his articles, but also an accomplished artist — especially for technical drawings such as ships, weapons, and equipment — which later led him to professional work beginning in Thr Travllers' Digest #16 (1989). Some local support for Third Imperium came from Aaron van Berg, David New, and Paul Stoneman. Super fans Ed Edwards and Mike Mikesh also offered a few articles.

Third Imperium was one of a few fanzines that passed through the transition from Classic Traveller (1977) to MegaTraveller (1987). As was common in an era when new editions weren't seen as a big deal, the change was minimized, with updated content slowly phased in starting with issue #7 (1987). One issue's adventure even mixes MegaTraveller tasks with Classic Traveller starships! The only notable change in the magazine was a revamp of the starships column to also include vehicles, thanks to the new design possibilities of MegaTraveller.

With issue #9 (1988), which marked Third Imperium's second anniversary, Jackson noted that his magazine was the longest-running fanzine, which was technically true. In the end, Third Imperium totalled eleven issues over two and a half years. Though a number of fanzines have hit the eleven-issue mark, managing the interest (and effort!) to produce a magazine for more than two years has been much rarer, with several of the more casual HIWG zines being the few others to manage it — as well as the long-running internet-driven Freelance Traveller (2010-Present) in the modern day.

Jackson eventually brought Third Imperium to an end because of lack of time, in part because he was producing more official Traveller work. Part of that was through HIWG, but Jackson was also working on a scenario book called "Flashback" for GDW, full of historic adventures. (Sadly, it never appeared.) Third Imperium #11 (1988) was the last issue, with a planned twelfth issue and "Best of" volume both failing to materialize.

One problem with a fanzine detailing a sector one subsector per issue is that they never finish, and that was the case with Third Imperium and its Trojan Reach. Jackson clearly recognized the problem and intended to finish his Trojan Reach in the "Best of", but was unable to. Nonetheless, the Trojan Reach Jackson created largely remains canon, even in recent products such as Mongoose's The Pirates of Drinax (2017). As author Gareth Hanrahan said: "First, I must thank Mike Jackson, the author of the Third Imperium fanzine. My work on the Trojan Reach was built on his material written thirty years prior. The weight of history in Traveller can be a burden, but it is also a joy and honour to contribute to it."

Though a fanzine, Third Imperium has some of the better production and content for the category, with material that remains very usable today.

In the '00s, Jackson became a movie editor. He received an Emmy nomination for "Outstanding Individual Achievement in a Craft: Editing" for the documentary Beyond Top Secret (2006).

Obtaining the Magazines

Thanks to Joshua Bell (with permission from Mike Jackson), all eleven issues of Third Imperium are available for download online.

About the Contributors

Credits are somewhat problematic for Third Imperium because they're rarely listed. In Third Imperium #8 (1988), Mike Jackson said that was because the uncredited content was his own, and that he thought people would get tired of seeing his name. So, that statement is taken as fact in this index, with all uncredited articles listed as by Mike Jackson.

With that said, there were at least two poorly credited adventures in early issues, by Aaron van Berg, something only revealed in a later editorial. There may be other omissions of this sort, particularly in the first three issues. If you know of anything miscredited, please email me.

This index is © Copyright 2022 by Shannon Appelcline. It is released under a cc-by-4.0 license, allowing reuse with attribution.

Main Index

🧰 Accessories

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Coyns
Droyne Coyns Mike Jackson 8 insert
Forms
Traveller Campaign Record Sheet Mike Jackson 1 18

🎞️ Adventures: Misc

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Races, Aslan
Code of Honor Traveller 1e Golden Age Mike Jackson 2 10-13
Races, Droyne
SS-12b Traveller 1e Golden Age Mike Jackson & David New 5 11-14
Then and Now Traveller 1e Golden Age Mike Mikesh 11 10-16

🎞️ Adventures: Geographic, Imperium, Domain of Deneb1

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Trojan Reach
Trojan Reach, Menorial Subsector [A]
Then and Now [Paques: 0404] Traveller 1e Golden Age Mike Mikesh 11 10-16
Trojan Reach, Gazulin Subsector [D]
The Narcissus Cup [Peridot: 2805] Traveller 1e Golden Age Aaron van Berg 3 10-14
Trojan Reach, Yggdrasil Subsector [E]
Mindburst [Floria: 0213] MegaTraveller Rebellion Mike Jackson 8 12-15
Trojan Reach, Dpres Subsector [F]
The Gabriel Project [Gabriel: 1114] Traveller 1e Golden Age Mike Jackson 7 10-14+
Trojan Reach, Sindal Subsector [G]
Out of the Egg [Cordillon: 2411] Traveller 1e Golden Age Aaron van Berg 1 10-14+
Trojan Reach, Tobia Subsector [H]
After the Fact [Wildeman: 2819] Traveller 1e
MegaTraveller
Golden Age Duncan Torrance 9 10-13+
SS-12b [Ayldem: 3013] Traveller 1e Golden Age Mike Jackson & David New 5 11-14
Trojan Reach, Goertel Subsector [J]
Vendetta [Colony Six: 1221] MegaTraveller Golden Age Mike Jackson 10 10-12
Trojan Reach, Tlaiowaha Subsector [K]
Code of Honor Traveller 1e Golden Age Mike Jackson 2 10-13
Trojan Reach, The Borderland [L]
Delusions of Goodhood [Ergo: 2625] Traveller 1e Golden Age Mike Jackson 4 10-14
  1. The Domain of Deneb is the most Spinward of the Domains. It includes the Deneb Sector, the Reft Sector, the Spinward Marches, and the Trojan Reach. It's the most traditional location for adventure in the Imperium. It is also known as the region "Behind the Claw".

🛸 Aliens: Humaniti

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Vilani, Language
Vilani Word Generator Mike Jackson 3 15

🛸 Aliens: Major Races

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Droyn Coyns
Droyne Coyns Mike Jackson 8 insert

🛸 Aliens: Minor Races

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Imperium
Imperium, Deneb, Trojan Reach
Blotches Traveller 1e Golden Age Mike Jackson & David New 6 6-8+
Traveller's Hardware: Blotch Equipment Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 6 9

📚 Background: Misc

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Organizations, Government
Imperial Government Golden Age Mike Jackson 8 16-17
Organizations, Law
Bounty Hunters Golden Age Mike Jackson 3 4
Organizations, Military
Imperial Navy Uniforms Golden Age Mike Jackson 7 15
Science, Misc
Terraforming Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 1 15-16
Science, Medical
Cyborgs Part 31 Mike Jackson 6 4-5
  1. The basis of the "Replacement Body Parts" articles in THE TRAVELLERS' DIGEST #12-14 (DGP, 1988)

🌌 Background: Geographic, Charted Space

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Imperium, Maps
Charted Space [1115]1 Golden Age Mike Jackson 10 insert
  1. This map is a few sectors wider and taller than the traditional multi-empire maps, potentially making it the largest printed map of Charted Space in existence. Also see

🌌 Background: Geographic, Imperium, Domain of Deneb1

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Trojan Reach
The Florian League Traveller Golden Age Mike Jackson 8 4-6
Trojan Reach, Menorial Subsector [A]
Map/Subsector: Menorial Rebellion Mike Jackson 11 9
UWPs/Subsector: Menorial Rebellion Mike Jackson 11 8
Trojan Reach, Menorial Subsector [A], Paques [0404]
Map/Planet: Paques Golden Age Aaron van Berg 11 11
Trojan Reach, Gazulin Subsector [D]
Map/Subsector: Gazulin Golden Age Mike Jackson 3 9
UWPs/Subsector: Gazulin Golden Age Mike Jackson 3 8
Trojan Reach, Gazulin Subsector [D], Peridot [2805]
Map/Planet: Peridot Golden Age Aaron van Berg 3 13
Trojan Reach, Yggdrasil Subsector [E]
Map/Subsector: Yggdrasil Golden Age Mike Jackson 3 11
UWPs/Subsector: Yggdrasil Golden Age Mike Jackson 3 10
Trojan Reach, Dpres Subsector [F]
Map/Subsector: Dpres Golden Age Mike Jackson 7 9
UWPs/Subsector: Dpres Golden Age Mike Jackson 7 8
Trojan Reach, Sindal Subsector [G]
Map/Subsector: Sindal Golden Age 1 9
UWPs/Subsector: Sindal Golden Age Mike Jackson 1 8
Trojan Reach, Sindal Subsector [G], Cordillon [2411]
Map/Planet: Cordillon Golden Age Mike Jackson 1 10
Trojan Reach, Tobia Subsector [H]
Map/Subsector: Tobia Golden Age Mike Jackson 5 9
UWPs/Subsector: Tobia Golden Age Mike Jackson 5 8
Trojan Reach, Tobia Subsector [H], Ayldem [3013]
Map/Planet: Ayldem Mike Jackson & David New 5 11
Trojan Reach, Nora'a Subsector [H]
Map/Subsector: Nora'a Rebellion Mike Jackson 9 9
UWPs/Subsector: Nora'a Rebellion Mike Jackson 9 8
Trojan Reach, Goertel Subsector [J]
Map/Subsector: Goertel Rebellion Mike Jackson 10 9
UWPs/Subsector: Goertel Rebellion Mike Jackson 10 8
Glorious Empire Rebellion Mike Jackson 10 4
Trojan Reach, Tlaiowaha Subsector [K]
Map/Subsector: Tlaiowaha Golden Age Mike Jackson 2 9
UWPs/Subsector: Tlaiowaha Golden Age Mike Jackson 2 8
Trojan Reach, The Borderland [L]
Map/Subsector: The Borderland Golden Age Mike Jackson 4 9
UWPs/Subsector: The Borderland Golden Age Mike Jackson 4 8
Trojan Reach, The Borderland [L], Ergo [2625]
Map/Planet: Ergo Mike Jackson 4 10
Trojan Reach, The Borderland [L], Acrid [2722]
Map/Planet: Acrid Golden Age Mike Jackson 6 10
Acrid: Home of the Blotches Traveller 1e Golden Age Mike Jackson 6 10-11+
  1. The Domain of Deneb is the most Spinward of the Domains. It includes the Deneb Sector, the Reft Sector, the Spinward Marches, and the Trojan Reach. It's the most traditional location for adventure in the Imperium. It is also known as the region "Behind the Claw".

⌛ Background: Historic

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Misc, Introduction
The Complete Traveller Chronology Golden Age Mike Jackson 6 insert
The Rebellion, Misc, Imperial Maps
Battle Fields of the Rebellion [1116+]1 Rebellion 10 insert
  1. Also appears in the IMPERIAL ENCYCLOPEDIA (GDW, 1987)

🖊️ Campaign Design

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Worlds
Unexplored Space Traveller 1e Mike Mikesh 5 16-17

🛠️ Equipment: Misc

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Clothing
Traveller's Hardware: Radiation Suit Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 3 5
Clothing, Exoskeletons
Traveller's Hardware: Powered Exoskeletons Mike Jackson 9 5
Clothing, Vacc Suits
Inside Equipment: TL15 Vacc Suit Mike Jackson 8 21
Computers
Computers Part 1 MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 9 14-16
Computers Part 2 MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 10 14-16
Computers Part 3 MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 11 17-18
Environmental
Traveller's Hardware: Radiation Suit Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 3 5
Espionage
Traveller's Hardware: Camoflage Cover Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 2 5
MegaTraveller Adaptations [Camoflauge Cover] MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 9 17
Traveller's Hardware: Disguise Kit MegaTraveller Mike Jackson & Duncan Torrance 9 4-5
Traveller's Hardware: Holosuit Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 7 16
Traveller's Hardware: Sound Damper Mike Jackson 5 10
Traveller's Hardware: Voice Modulator Mike Jackson 4 4
Medical
Cyborgs Part 11 Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 4 16-18
Cyborgs Part 21 Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 5 4-5
Cyborgs Part 31 Mike Jackson 6 4-5
Medical, Drugs
Traveller's Hardware: New Drugs Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 3 5
Traveller's Hardware: Poison MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 11 20-21
Tools
Inside Equipment: Map Box Golden Age Mike Jackson 3 19
Traveller's Hardware: Steel Foam Mike Jackson 2 5
MegaTraveller Adaptations [Steel Foam] MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 9 17
Tools, Blotches
Traveller's Hardware: Blotch Equipment Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 6 9
  1. The basis of the "Replacement Body Parts" articles in THE TRAVELLERS' DIGEST #12-14 (DGP, 1988)

🤖 Equipment: Artificial Life

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Robots, Designs1
Droid Designs Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 3 18
  1. Robots designed using the BOOK 8: ROBOTS (1986) system.

⚔️ Equipment: Combat

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Armors
Traveller's Hardware: Shields Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 1 5
MegaTraveller Adaptations [Shields] MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 9 17
Weapons, Misc
Customized Weapons MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 10 13+
MegaTraveller Adaptations [Weapons] MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 9 17
New Weapons Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 3 16-17
Weapons, Melee
New Weapons Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 3 16-17
Weapons, Non-Lethal
Traveller's Hardware: Riot Foam Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 4 4
Weapons, Ranged, Misc, Accessories
Traveller's Hardware: Alternate Power Packs MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 9 5
Traveller's Hardware: Speed Loader MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 10 5
Traveller's Hardware: Trigger Lock Mike Jackson 10 5
Weapons, Ranged, Misc, Illustrations
Inside Equipment: Autopistol Mike Jackson 9 19
Inside Equipment: FGMP-14 Golden Age Mike Jackson 2 19
Inside Equipment: Disintegrator Mike Jackson 7 19
Inside Equipment: Gauss Rifle Mike Jackson 4 19
Weapons, Ranged
Traveller's Hardware: Flamethrower MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 8 7
Weapons, Ranged, Aliens, Blotches
Traveller's Hardware: Blotch Equipment Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 6 9
Weapons, Ranged, Lasers
Traveller's Hardware: Combat Sentry [Laser Rifle] MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 10 5
Traveller's Hardware: Variable Output Laser MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 10 5
Weapons, Ranged, Slugthrowers
Traveller's Hardware: Combat Spray Gun MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 8 7
Traveller's Hardware: Rocket Pistol Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 5 10

🛰️ Equipment: Infrastructure

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Starports
Traveller's Hardware: Type D Prefab Starport Mike Jackson 7 16+

🚀 Equipment: Transport

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Misc, Construction, Errata
Traveller Craft MegaTraveller 10 6-7
Grav Vehicles
Inside Equipment: Air/Raft Mike Jackson 10 17
Personal Vehicles
Inside Equipment: Grav Belt Golden Age Mike Jackson 3 19
Starships, Misc, Construction
Customized Starships Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 7 17-18
Starships, Components
Inside Equipment: Stateroom (TL13+) Mike Jackson 6 17
Stealth Systems Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 5 15
Starships, Components, Weapons
Missile Designs1 Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 4 15
Starships, Designs, Aslan
Aslan Trader [Eakhau: 400T] Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 2 6-7
Aslan Warships Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 2 18
Starships, Designs, Blotch
BXC-1: Blotch Exploration Cruiser [VN: 200T] Traveller 1e Golden Age Mike Jackson 6 14-15
Starships, Designs, Droyne
Droyne Cruiser [CD: 1kT] Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 5 6-7
Stealth Ship [SS:200T] Traveller 1e Golden Age Mike Jackson & David New 5 13
Starships, Designs, Florian
Florian Merchant [PA: 1kT] Traveller 1e Ed Edwards? 8 8-9+
Florian Starships Traveller 1e Ed Edwards 8 18-19
Starships, Designs, Hiver
Hiver Embassy Ship [HH: 800T] Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 7 6-7
Starships, Designs, Imperium
Hammer Class Assault Cruiser [CI: 45kT] MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 11 19
Destroyer Escort [DE: 1kT] Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 3 6-7
Asteroid Mover [PT: 1kT] Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 1 16
Pirate Corsair ["R": 400T] Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 4 6-7+
Starships, Designs, Solomani
Solomani Cruiser [SM: 1kT] Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 9 6-7
Starships, Designs, Vargr
The Vargr Corsair [VP: 400T] Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 1 6-7
  1. Built using the system from JTAS #21 (GDW, 1984).

🧶️ Fiction

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Misc, Comic Strips
Traveller's Advice Mike Jackson 1 2
Traveller's Advice Mike Jackson 2 19
Traveller's Advice Mike Jackson 3 19
Traveller's Advice Mike Jackson 4 19
Traveller's Advice Mike Jackson 5 19
Traveller's Advice Mike Jackson 6 16
Traveller's Advice Mike Jackson 7 19
Traveller's Advice Mike Jackson 8 21
Traveller's Advice Mike Jackson 9 19
Traveller's Advice Mike Jackson 10 17
Traveller's Advice Mike Jackson 11 21

🗣️ NPCs

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Misc, Collections
Personalities of the Rebellion MegaTraveller Rebellion Mike Jackson 7 4-5
Careers, Nobles
Personalities of the Rebellion MegaTraveller Rebellion Mike Jackson 7 4-5

⬆️ Meta

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Editorial
Notes from the Capital Mike Jackson 1 3
Notes from the Capital Mike Jackson 2 3
Notes from the Capital Mike Jackson 3 3
Notes from the Capital Mike Jackson 4 3
Notes from the Capital Mike Jackson 5 3
Notes from the Capital Mike Jackson 6 3
Notes from the Capital Mike Jackson 8 3
Notes from the Capital Mike Jackson 9 3
Notes from the Capital Mike Jackson 10 3
Notes from the Capital Mike Jackson 11 3
Index, Magazine
1st Year Article Index Mike Jackson 5 18
2nd Year Article Index Mike Jackson 9 18

📜 Rules

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Misc, Official Errata
Traveller Craft MegaTraveller 10 6-7
Character Creation
Evolution: Planetary Effects on Characters Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 2 4
Character Creation, Careers, Advanced, Misc.
Assassins MegaTraveller Mike Jackson 11 4-7
Character Creation, Careers, Advanced, Law Enforcement
JSB Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 2 14-17
Characteristics
Evolution: Planetary Effects on Characters Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 2 4
Cyborgs
Cyborgs Part 11 Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 4 16-18
Cyborgs Part 21 Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 5 4-5
Environment, Hostile
Rad Zone: Radiation Effects Traveller 1e Mike Jackson 1 4
  1. The basis of the "Replacement Body Parts" articles in THE TRAVELLERS' DIGEST #12-14 (DGP, 1988)

Appendix I: Other GDW RPGs

🌍 2300AD

Title System Era Author # Pgs
Reviews
Traveller: 2300 T2300 4 5

Covers