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Welcome to the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, Fourth Edition. Some sample entries appear below. Click here for the Introduction; here for the masthead; here for Acknowledgments; here for the FAQ; here for advice on citations. Find entries via the search box above (more details here) or browse the menu categories in the grey bar at the top of this page.

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Kuroma Hisashi

Working name of Japanese translator Hiroshi Sakuma (1951-1993), who had a profound impact on the sf genre as it appears to modern Japanese readers. A graduate in Law from the prestigious Tokyo University, he became a commercials director for Dentsū before drifting into translation and occasional criticism initially under the pen-name Seiki Shirakawa. / Kuroma's translations clustered around a group of authors whose works were suffused with neologisms or complex concepts, including K W ...


Japanese animated film (2019). Trigger, X FLAG. Directed by Hiroyuki Imaishi. Written by Kazuki Nakashima. Voice cast includes Arata Furuta, Kenichi Matsuyama, Masato Sakai and Taichi Saotome. 111 minutes. Colour. / Thirty years ago, random humans – now called the Burnish – spontaneously developed pyrokinetic (see Psi Powers) abilities, and half the world's population died in the subsequent conflagrations. In the present day, the City of Promepolis's departments include Burning ...

Townsend, J D

(?   -    ) US musician, journalist and author whose sf novel, The Assassin's Dream (2005). describe a distant Near Future Dystopian world run on bureaucratic lines by females (see Women in SF) in the absence of most males due to a genetic syndrome that has killed most of them off. The story involves the discovery by a government assassin of truths upsetting to her understanding of how this world came about. [JC]

Brebner, Winston

(1924-2004) US author whose sf novel Doubting Thomas (1956) depicts a computer-ruled Dystopia; the protagonist of the tale, a magistrate in his centrally controlled state, secretly becomes a clown once a year, during the State Holiday, giving some opportunities for Satire. The novel also explores the metaphysical pathos of clowning in a world that disallows any element of Revel. [JC]

Universe [game]

Videogame (1983). Omnitrend Software (OS). Designed by Thomas Carbone, William Leslie III. Platforms: Atari8 (1983); AppleII (1984); DOS (1987). / Universe, a largely text-based game with some outline graphics which is played in turns, is an interesting precursor to the space exploration form of Space Sim, of which the first true example was Elite (1984). As in a space exploration game, players each possess their own spacecraft but must mine, trade, transport cargo and passengers and ...

Nicholls, Peter

(1939-2018) Australian editor and author, primarily a critic and historian of sf through his creation and editing of The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction [see below]; resident in the UK 1970-1988, in Australia from 1988; worked as an academic in English literature (1962-1968, 1971-1977), scripted television documentaries, was a Harkness Fellow in Film-making (1968-1970) in the USA, worked as a publisher's editor (1982-1983), often broadcast film and book reviews on BBC Radio from 1974 and ...

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