Terran Trade Authority - Spacecraft 2000-2100AD
July 11, 2013 3:16 PM   Subscribe


 
This made my 12 year old self so happy.
posted by 2N2222 at 3:24 PM on July 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


I had Spacecraft 2000-2100 AD when I was a kid. (I may still have it around.) And I recognize every ship in this video, and most of the scenes.

I don't remember as many random explosions and fires in the book, though...
posted by Foosnark at 3:24 PM on July 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


Wow. Vimeo is somehow picking up a feed from my cerebral cortex at age 11.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 3:29 PM on July 11, 2013 [3 favorites]


I used to love these books. So cool! And this is so cool!
posted by KokuRyu at 3:34 PM on July 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


Ditto what biscuit said. Also, I have to go play Homeworld again now.
posted by KHAAAN! at 3:35 PM on July 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


A lovely, lovely idea pulled off pretty brilliantly - seeing the Elson craft actually fly and experiencing a real gasp of recognition over the Burns and McKie pieces was unexpectedly moving. A real treat.
posted by specialbrew at 3:43 PM on July 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


2000-2100 AD

In the real world it's already 2013. We have a pretty good idea of what's on the drawing board up until 2020: nothing big, nothing fast, few things that are manned. More importantly, there are currently no off-world ports, factories or mines for trade ships to visit and no medium term plans to build them. Forget FTL, we have no ongoing activity on our own moon. The future is late.

I see the latest books (2006) carry the title Spacecraft 2100 to 2200 AD, which is depressingly realistic.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 3:43 PM on July 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


It was Spacewreck that had the biggest impact on me when I was a kid. Probably the idea that something could be from the far future and yet simultaneously ancient. I'd really like to see those images brought to life in the same way.
posted by pipeski at 3:51 PM on July 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


Adrian Mann was a member of my mostly defunct Hard SF 3D group. See also Adrian's TTA page, where there are stills of most of the vessels in the book.

This post is making me want to update the site again. And start doing 3D again. And tear out my hair, because I don't have the time...
posted by jiawen at 3:52 PM on July 11, 2013 [1 favorite]




Oh man, those 70s sf paperbacks make me wish I could buy poster sized versions of them. AND I DON'T CARE HOW TACKY THEY WOULD LOOK. Well actually I do and would probably never actually put them up if I had them.
posted by aspo at 4:04 PM on July 11, 2013


In the real world it's already 2013. We have a pretty good idea of what's on the drawing board up until 2020: nothing big, nothing fast, few things that are manned. More importantly, there are currently no off-world ports, factories or mines for trade ships to visit and no medium term plans to build them. Forget FTL, we have no ongoing activity on our own moon.

You thought we built the ships? With our ingenuity and stuff? Haha, no, in 2014 an Alien federation stops by Earth and says hi. We club them on the head and nick their sweet ride. That's how it starts.
posted by anonymisc at 4:06 PM on July 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


These are amazingly well done. I too had this book, and these look very accurate. Thanks ArtW.
posted by doctor_negative at 4:07 PM on July 11, 2013


You thought we built the ships? With our ingenuity and stuff? Haha, no, in 2014 an Alien federation stops by Earth and says hi. We club them on the head and nick their sweet ride. That's how it starts.

We're the mirror universe?

Makes sense.
posted by Artw at 4:08 PM on July 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


"...We club them on the head and nick their sweet ride. That's how it starts."

So our future is like The high Crusade?
posted by Kevin Street at 4:09 PM on July 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Ha, I remember my cousin having these books and me being astounded by them. Over the years they stayed on my mind but I couldn't remember many details. A while back I wound up asking about them on AbeBooks BookSleuth where someone pointed me the right direction - apparently I wasn't the only one obsessed!
posted by exogenous at 4:16 PM on July 11, 2013


OMG. I built so many of these ships out of lego. With the space shuttle and home computers, the future was going to be AWESOME.

Poor kid.

Still, this is amazingly well done.

And I have that song on a tiesto mix somewhere around here....
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 4:21 PM on July 11, 2013


Ohh man is that a bolt of nostalgia straight to the brain. I spent so many hours looking through that book when I was a kid - every spacecraft in the video was immediately familiar, and I could even remember some of their names and fragments of the stories about them. Too bad he didn't animate any of the weird alien anomalies from the end of the book - I always liked that ghost ship they found orbiting Barnard's Star. But I'm glad he put as much time into this as he did - what an obvious labor of love.
posted by Mars Saxman at 4:23 PM on July 11, 2013


Sweet. I remember when I first started Mass Effect and how delighted I was that the visual there were so heavily influenced by Stewart Cowley's work. Somewhere a 12 year old me went "Squeee!"
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 4:24 PM on July 11, 2013


...an Alien federation stops by Earth.... We club them on the head and nick their sweet ride.


do not try this....
posted by Kronos_to_Earth at 4:30 PM on July 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


I had Spacecraft 2000-2100 AD when I was a kid. (I may still have it around.) And I recognize every ship in this video, and most of the scenes.

You are me AICMFP.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 4:36 PM on July 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Anyone played (or even read) the Terran Trade Authority RPG?
posted by Zed at 5:00 PM on July 11, 2013


This pretty much expresses how I feel after watching that vid.

Artw, my inner 12-year-old owes you a beverage of your choice should we ever meet IRL.
posted by soundguy99 at 5:01 PM on July 11, 2013


Well, what a pleasure! Thank you artw, I had no idea anyone else in the universe had these. (I got mine on a remainder table when they were past their sell-by date. Still long ago, of course.)

The Unidentified ones spook me out to this day.
posted by jfuller at 5:13 PM on July 11, 2013


I also was fascinated by that book as a kid. Thinking back on it, you could really recognize a lot of SF book cover artist's work at a glance back then. Their styles were all so different and individual. Now, post CGI and photoshop, pretty much everyone's work looks like Syd Mead's.
posted by jabah at 6:04 PM on July 11, 2013


Al Reynolds: The Foss Way
posted by Artw at 6:19 PM on July 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Everyone here knows about Concept Ships, right?
posted by Artw at 6:22 PM on July 11, 2013 [7 favorites]


I have the book in my hands right now and was able to flip pages and compare with the video.

Great stuff. Thanks for posting.
posted by Argyle at 6:51 PM on July 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


A few years ago I found a copy of this, in mint condition, at a library sale in Arlington VA. I think I paid like $1 for it. Still have it, it's in my bookshelf now.
posted by smoothvirus at 7:08 PM on July 11, 2013


You thought we built the ships? With our ingenuity and stuff? Haha, no, in 2014 an Alien federation stops by Earth and says hi. We club them on the head and nick their sweet ride. That's how it starts.

Not in this one. Check your reports.
posted by Lipstick Thespian at 7:49 PM on July 11, 2013


Everyone here knows about Concept Ships, right?

This also reminds me of "Visions of the Future" (in 5 parts)
Sci-fi art from the second Golden Age of Science Fiction when books, magazines and films had some of the most amazing and memorable covers/artwork from artists like Peter Elson, Angus Mckie, Chris Foss and Tim White and John Berkey.
posted by audi alteram partem at 8:08 PM on July 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Ever since learning about these books a few years back (on Metafilter, I think) I've had a powerful lust for them.

...yup, still insanely expensive.

Guess I'll have to content myself with the Usborne Books of the Future in the meantime.
posted by Sokka shot first at 8:31 PM on July 11, 2013


Sokka: I found a used copy on Amazon for $14 last time the book was discussed here. There are a few copies available for about that price right now.
posted by Mars Saxman at 8:34 PM on July 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


This book was the inspiration for sooo many half baked sci-fi stories for me.
posted by MartinWisse at 8:52 PM on July 11, 2013


This is flipping awesome. My small-town library had the TTA books, and I must have checked them out a dozen times each. The video was so perfect I could recognize incidents from the Proximan War.
posted by vibrotronica at 9:14 PM on July 11, 2013


Good Lord, you all too? I used to spend hours gazing at those ships. What an amazing feat to bring them to life, so beautifully.
posted by Xoebe at 9:30 PM on July 11, 2013


aspo: You can get prints of some of the covers here.
posted by bdave at 9:58 PM on July 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


Christ, the feels.
posted by obiwanwasabi at 11:18 PM on July 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Everyone here knows about Concept Ships, right?

Now I know where Io9 gets all of its splashy artwork.

great link btw, thanks
posted by OHenryPacey at 11:28 PM on July 11, 2013


How strongly and vividly I remember this book that I’ve not seen in almost thirty years, when so many of my other recollections from that time seem so weak, and distant. I must have spent so much time losing myself in these pictures. Thanks for the post, Artw!
posted by misteraitch at 2:51 AM on July 12, 2013


Ever since learning about these books a few years back (on Metafilter, I think) I've had a powerful lust for them.
...yup, still insanely expensive.


On somehow learning that there existed two more books beyond Spacecraft 2000-2100AD I went mad searching for them. (And this was largely before the Internet).

Found them in hardback at an old market stall one day: $4 each for Spacewrecks and Great Space Battles.

Did I buy them? Boy howdy did I!

Spacecracft remains my favourite, since it has been with me since 1980 or so.

And just in case anyone missed it: TTA Capital Ships. It's kinda buried away.
posted by Mezentian at 2:58 AM on July 12, 2013


OMG. Just watched it. So perfect.

Although I am disturbed by the fact I could name so many of the ships.

But all of my favourtites were there.
I squeed when the Intersteller Queen popped up.
posted by Mezentian at 3:44 AM on July 12, 2013


A brilliant animated version of a brilliant book.

I squeed when the Intersteller Queen popped up.

I can't help but think the design of that ship had an influence on Ian Gibson's take on the 'Clara Pandy' from Halo Jones.
posted by panboi at 3:56 AM on July 12, 2013


I haven't read beyond Halo Jones book 1 (and even then not for 20 years), but a quick google suggests you are correct.

Of course, the Intersteller Queen was on Brain Stableford's Hooded Swan/Star-Pilot Grainger books (at least the Pan versions I have from '76-'79, all painted by Angus McKie -- who, as a kid, I enjoyed more than Foss), so it would have been everywhere in the UK around that time.

Also, Lego IQ.
posted by Mezentian at 5:03 AM on July 12, 2013


I squeed when the Intersteller Queen popped up.

For me it was the Avery-Frost Orion.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 7:05 AM on July 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Wow. That's remarkably well done.

I owned all those books, too! Spacecraft and Starliners were my favorites. I wrote reams and reams of TTA fan fic and I even tried to run a TTA Traveller campaign once. Honestly, until Next Generation came along, my idea of space opera probably owed more to the TTA books than it ever owed to Star Trek or even Star Wars. I kind of wish I still had the books.
posted by octobersurprise at 8:00 AM on July 12, 2013


I too had one of the books. And 12 yo is right. I remember buying it at mall bookstore. Since it came out in 1978, I suspect I was a little older, but right around that age.

The artists works were very distinct. I recall flipping back and forth to match up the various artists.

I don't think I have the book anymore, though I do have other books from around that time. I'll have to check my bookshelves. It would be interesting to see if my 10 yo son is as interested in it as I was. I doubt it though, too much media is too available to make one odd book interesting.
posted by jclarkin at 8:08 AM on July 12, 2013


Page shots. If anyone cares, and has not the books to hand. Only a few, but enough, maybe.

my idea of space opera probably owed more to the TTA books than it ever owed to Star Trek or even Star Wars

I watched these videos over and over, and I was reminded of my attempts to mush Star Frontiers, Star Control, Babylon 5 and TTA into a workable RPG.I am no game designer.
posted by Mezentian at 8:58 AM on July 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


Dan McPharlin has pretty much nailed the 70s Spaceship style.
posted by Artw at 9:07 AM on July 12, 2013


More '80s (early) for mine.
posted by Mezentian at 9:41 AM on July 12, 2013


Picked up a pretty decent copy of Terran Trade Authority - Spacecraft 2000-2100AD (after owning it as a kid) at the last sf con I went to plus a couple of others in a similar vein... it still smells of nostalgia.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 10:32 AM on July 12, 2013


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