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World of Darkness: Gothic Icons
por Megan R. [Cr�tico destacado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 01/27/16 08:05:16

Originally released as an April Fool's Day piece (something Onyx Path Publishing seems really fond of) in 2015, these characters draw on classic 'Victorian Gothic' literature and are beautifully constructed based on characters from various well-known works. As with previous offerings of this type, the PDF is free but you have to pay, understandibly, if you'd prefer a book.


There are six characters in all, and they all fit into the bracket of Historical Angst™ which the author claims has been trademarked! (Not sure if this is the case or a joke but I'm playing safe...) Each comes with a description/backstory, role-playing notes, an illustration and a complete character sheet - so you could use them (probably best as NPCs) if you really want to. After all, who could resist an eighty-seven year old Russian aristocrat from the early nineteenth century? As a card-sharping ghost she lingers on and it's easy to think of some kind of mischief in which she could be embroiled. She comes from a Russian short story published in 1834.


The other characters are Captain Robert Walton (a failed poet who failed as an explorer too, from Frankenstein by Mary Shelley), Princess Hermonthis (from a French short story of 1840 about a mummified Egyptian princess who got a bit annoyed when one of her feet fell off), the Black Cat (from Edger Allen Poe's short story of the same name, a luckless feline whose owner blamed it for all his shortcomings), Baron Vordenburg (a vampire hunter who reads a lot but rarely actually comes out until the very last minute when others have done all the legwork, from Carmilla, by Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu published in 1871) and Thomas Carnacki (star of Carnacki the Ghost-Finder, a collection of short stories by William Hope Hodgson that actually came out in 1913 but he oozes Victorian Gothic).


Thoroughly-researched and realised well in game turms this is at least entertaining and who knows, perhaps you might find a use for one or more somewhere in your chronicles!



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World of Darkness Overly Specific Condition Cards
por Megan R. [Cr�tico destacado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 01/25/16 06:58:59

Originally released as a spoof product to 'celebrate' April Fool's Day 2014, this collection of 14 Condition cards proved to be popular enough to leave available. It's free to download the PDF so easy to check out, and even if you decide that you want actual cards you only need to pay a couple of dollars for them.


As you can imagine, most are pretty silly. But read them... they actually work. Perhaps your character has fallen ill/been knocked out or something - or you cannot make it to the game - apply the 'Extended Hiatus' Condition, and if you're there you can play a temporary character but any Beats you earn go to your regular character instead. If you are absent, tag another character: on your return your character gets the same number of Beats as the other character earned during your absence. Neat, huh?


There's a lot of a 'I didn't know I needed that' feel about them, things you might never have considered but once you see it there all neatly laid out (and you have stopped laughing) you start to see how you might be able to make use of them in your game. Others are less useful but could be used to effect - take 'Broke a Mirror on Friday the 13th' for example. Use this on a character who really screws up one thing. Under this Condition, the Storyteller can introduce one really scary thing from a past World of Darkness book to terrorise your character. The drawback for the Storyteller is, she has to convert its rules to be compliant with the God-Machine Chronicle rules up-date. Have a brawl or otherwise chase it off, resolve the Condition and get on with your life (or unlife if applicable).


Or perhaps you'd like the persistent Condition 'Monster Shares Your Hobby' - whenever you go to an event or practise your hobby in public, that darn monster turns up doing the same thing there as well. At least you'll know where to find him... but you can only resolve it by one of you dropping that particular pastime. And when you are feeling swamped, take the 'Extensive Collection of Conditions' Condition - replacing four other Conditions with it. Then you get to change a Virtue or a Vice in a sort of mid-life crisis.


Not as silly as you might expect, these are things that will make you go 'Hmmm'



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Chronicles of Darkness
por Customer Name Withheld [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 01/23/16 12:33:10

While a good start on updating the nWoD core book to include the updates from the GMC Rules Update, several editing issues are present within the text that has prevented our group from moving over to as our main chronicle resource.


To wit, many of the updated rules and/or item require additional rules and/or items that have not been includeded - forcing one to refer back to the previous version of the nWoD/GMC books.


For Example: Safe Place - The location, luxury, and size size are supposed to be reprented by equipment. There are no listings for anything similiar to this in the equipment section unless you refer back to the seperate GMC Rules Update.


We'll be keeping an eye on this - hopefully OPP catches this issue and the others like it before the POD release is ready.



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World of Darkness: God-Machine Rules Update
por Megan R. [Cr�tico destacado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 01/22/16 08:27:30

This is the 'crunchy' appendix 'World of Darkness Rules Revisions' from The God-Machine Chronicle, released as a free download, and very useful it is too. Perhaps you are happy with your own chronicles and don't want to buy the full book, but even if you are using The God-Machine Chronicle most of it is 'Storyteller eyes only' whilst this material is useful to players - so send them to download this (as my Storyteller did a year ago) and they can have access to all the new rules mechanics without the temptation to read bits they ought not to see!


Since the New World of Darkness Core Rulebook was published in 2004, a huge number of books have come out to support the line, many of which have contained new rule mechanics to support whatever is presented in that book. Many of them, such as spirits (originally in Werewolf: The Forsaken), shards (Mirror), tiers (Hunter: The Vigil) and other mechanics have spread to other games in the line, becoming a general part of the New World of Darkness even though the core ruleset has remained the same. The material in this book is intended to draw all these strands together and present a new definition of the core rules, to be used throughout the line for future materials.


So, what's here? First of all, we look at Character Creation and Advancement. Start with the rules in the core rulebook, but apply these modifications and additions. New bits include Aspirations, where you set short- and long-term goals for your character and help develop his personality (and give the Storyteller hints as to opportunities you might like to have in future plots). There's an update to the Virtue and Vice rules, freeing you up from a set list and providing guidance on creating personalised ones instead. Their use has also been modified so that fulfilling a Virtue gives a full refresh to Willpower because your character feels so darn good about it, whilst fulfilling a Vice just restores a single point as he asserts his inner nature. There are examples to help (or use) of course. This section also introduces the concept of a Breaking Point and talks about experience.


Next comes a section on Merits, which replaces the Merits section of the core rules entirely. It includes most of the Merits from the core rulebook and those introduced in subsequent publications, and there's plenty of advice on how to use them in play.


This is followed by Conditions. These add an additional layer of consequence and reward to certain actions, but are based on circumstances rather than something you choose for yourself. They are temporary, being resolved by the effect that causes the Condition or the terms of the Condition itself (and when you resolve one you get a Beat towards your experience total). Some, however, are persistent - irrovocably linked to a character - and there's a subset called Tilts which are used in combat.


Then we meet Integrity. This replaces Morality as a guage of how a character's behaviour affects their psyche. There's a lengthy explanation of why Morality needed replacing due to the inconsistencies and oddities it produced. When you do something which hits a Breaking Point (as determined earlier), this may affect your Integrity.


Other things covered include Soul Loss (something to be avoided), Extended Actions (replacing the core rulebook mechanics for determining them) and Social Manoeuvering (also replacing the original rules for Social actions). This last is particularly comprehensive, but care needs to be taken that die-rolling doesn't replace role-playing. Used well, it will enhance it.


The next part of the book is given over to Combat and other ways of doing harm to characters (environmental dangers, illness, poisons, etc.). It makes combat even deadlier, something to be avoided where possible but very effective when you do engage in it. One interesting point is Intent: what does each participant actually want to get out of the fight, what are they fighting for? Defining your objective goes a long way to focussing the combat and provides a way of determining when an opponent will give up - some things just aren't worth dying for, even if someone thinks they are worth killing for. It makes combat more meaningful and integral to the plot rather than there just because, well, if there aren't a few brawls it's not a role-playing game.


Then come Ephemeral Beings: Ghosts, Spirits, and Angels. This provides a unified system of rules for all manner of ghosts (and can also be applied to God-Machine angels). Manifestations, possession and more are covered here, with effective use of Conditions to moderate what is going on when some spook comes a-calling. Neat. Finally, there's a comprehensive selection of Equipment of all kinds, find the right tool for the job here.


This part of The God-Machine Chronicles was written as Onyx Path Publishing was struggling to get permission to produce a second edition of the New World of Darkness Core Rulebook at the time. It's an excellent revision based on years of development and play, and well worth considering - and necessary if you want to use the Second Editions of the various game lines, as these rules are assumed to be in force. And it's free!



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World of Darkness: The God-Machine Chronicle
por Megan R. [Cr�tico destacado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 01/21/16 09:08:15

Opening with some very strange e-mail correspondence (concerning the sort of crazy offers that most of us just delete without thought), The God-Machine Chronicle presents some of Onyx Path Publishing's radical ideas for the New World of Darkness. One thing they'd recognised was that many gamers wanted a little more guidance and support in cronicle creation, so there's the framework for a quite mind-blowing one... but there's more. They also had ideas for how the rules could be revised, updated and improved, and that's here as well. Originally, they had proposed a Second Edition to the core rulebook, but that had been rejected by the then owners of White Wolf, so they chose this way to present their game mechanics ideas. (The material has now been drawn together in their Chronicles of Darkness book, released after White Wolf changed hands, but that's another story... and another review!).


The Introduction lays out the chronicle framework, one that is almost too big to grasp. The concept is the stuff conspiracy theories are made of, a vast God-Machine most people are not even aware of, one that cannot be communicated with nor appeased or influenced, one that treats individual people as tools to be used or tossed aside, viewing them in the light of their usefulness... or potential to gum up the works. Supernatural beings are more likely to be aware of it, but are no more able to understand it than anyone else. It's a cosmic power and people have as much change of understanding it as a mouse running around some vast clockwork mechanism... one misstep and they risk being crushed by machinery that plain isn't interested that they are there. The overall feeling you are aiming at is of very small fish in an enormous fish tank. Things that the party do, or encounter, may in some way be connected with the God-Machine... and if they do, best beware! It's all about strange events, almost X-Files in flavour, things that it might be safer to ignore, pass by on the other side - but where's the fun in that? There are loads of ideas here to get your creative juices flowing.


Chapter 1: Building the God-Machine Chronicle provides the Storyteller with advice on how to go about setting up a chronicle based on these concepts. It starts off by talking about 'tiers' - the scope, the stage on which your story will be set. It may be local, regional, global or cosmic in scale, and this will dictate the places in which it happens and the magnitude of the consequences that result from events. Then there are sections on the length of adventures (or even the whole chronicle), how many characters will be best and even the 'rating' - think film classification - that your chronicle should have. It may be a game about personal horror, but it is the characters that should experience it, rather than their players. Talk with your group, consider who they are and how much detail is appropriate when, for example, describing a corpse. The discussion then moves on to look at the sort of stories you can tell and - critically - how you introduce them to your players. It's likely that realisation that the God-Machine is involved (indeed, that there is a God-Machine at all) will be slow in coming. There's advice on character creation (including building extensive backgrounds) and setting, then introduces the concept of Chronicle Tracks. Based on a common theme, a Track presents a series of adventures and the examples given make use of a sequence of 'Tales' which are provided in the next chapter, strung together over what could be years of play as the underlying truth unfolds. Example locations and NPCs to populate them round off the chapter.


In Chapter 2: Tales of the God-Machine, we find some 20 scenarios involving the God-Machine in some way or another. They can be run as one-offs, strung together using the Tracks suggestions in the previous chapter, or used in some other way that you have devised. Each one is introduced as if it is where you began your game (the Tracks provide transitions from one to another to aid in stringing them together, or you may prefer a more episodic game). Every one is the skeleton of good long-running adventure in its own right, or could be run more succinctly if that suits your needs. There is enough here for an inventive Storyteller to pick up and more or less run with it, whilst those not so happy running games on the fly might want to put in some preparation first. They are fascinating, compelling, fair make you want to rush out and gather up some players...


Next, Chapter 3: The Cogs in the Machine presents a collection of detailed NPCs for the Storyteller to use. Each is provided with a comprehensive backstory as well as a full stat block. Some are linked to the previous chapter's tales, others have suggestions as to where they might be best used... all, of course, may be slotted in wherever you feel they fit best. This chapter also presents some 'angels' - the spiritual servants of the God-Machine - again linked to specific tales but also crying out to be used in stories of your own imagining.


Finally, there's an appendiz entitled World of Darkness Rules Revisions. These are updates to the rules that can be used independent of The God-Machine Chronicle, and which are assumed in all future volumes published by Onyx Path. Note that if you are not interested in the storyline material in this book, there is a free God-Machine Rules Update download that contains all the new rules material, so that you do not need to buy this book unless you want all of it. Considerate. Starting with character creation, there are rules to devise aspirations, changes to vices and virtues, the concept of integrity and breaking points - the one thing that really makes your character freak and question what he's doing, and more. There are new merits that you can take, sample cults and gangs to join (or avoid), and the real biggie - Conditions. These are about consequences and rewards, and are based on what actually takes place in the game, remaining operational until resolution criteria are met. There are associated Tilts, shorter-lasting equivalents that take effect during combat as well. Discussions of extended actions and social manoeuvering follow, and revisions/extensions to the combat system. There are other hazards and sources of harm to contend with as well. And spirits. Don't forget them. This section ends with new equipment and artefacts... many of which spawn whole story ideas as you read about them. It's not a whole new game - you still need the core rulebook - but it certainly streamlines and hones the original game mechanics to a whole new level.


The concepts here are quite dizzying, overwhelming. The potential to create epic memorable tales with your group is clear. There are years of fun to be had. If you like the New World of Darkness, this is well worth a look.



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Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition
por Customer Name Withheld [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 01/20/16 16:18:36

I received the 600+ premium POD book today and the spine broke the first time I opened it. The book is too big to acutally be used considering the binding is just glue. Do NOT spend such a large amount of money on this book. Stick with the .pdf if you make a purchase. I hope I can return this book as it was a total waste of money. POD just isn't as good as true book binding (sewn in pages).



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Chronicles of Darkness
por Adrian K. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 01/18/16 22:11:00

Where to start here? So this particular book is half second edition core book and half repackaging of the New World of Darkness supplement The God-Machine Chronicle. The first half of the books presents the rules system and adds some perspective for new storytellers. It also presents some new play ideas that may help distinguish Chronicles of Darkness from Classic World of Darkness and hopefully keep it unique from the upcoming One World of Darkness. It's straight forward and isn't bogged down with terminology and strict mechanics. The second half of the book is an edit of the original product. Some of the fiction is lost from the original supplement, however new fiction is added in this book. Other missing parts consist of the "rating system" discussed in the GMC and the rules sections are also edited out, having been covered and rewritten in the first part of the book. Finally the last batch of pages consist of equipment and condition charts alongside their descriptions, this is a nice touch. As for the art most of it is recycled from the God-Machine chronicle and some classic pieces from the World of Darkness 1st Edition rule book alongside some from Armory. All and all those pieces seem iconic to the cores and work very well in this new edition. Chronicles of Darkness isn't a revolutionary new book, but it sure does it's job explaining the system and surpasses the previous core book by not only including the rules for spirits and ghosts it adds the rules of Horrors (monster of the week style badies) and reprints the rules for Angels.



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Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition
por Customer Name Withheld [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 01/14/16 19:36:58

I was a little concerned about the binding on such a large book, but it is high quality and stands up to regular use.


I love having all of the pertinent information in one volume now, as opposed to having to search through supplements to find information on the TU, Nephandi, and the like.



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Chronicles of Darkness
por Jordan M. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 01/10/16 02:38:59

This is more good work by the writers over at Onyx Path. This book brings together the hard work of decades of writing, gaming and passion to make the perfect rules for, what was, the New World of Darkness. The original rules are as great as they have always been all these years, and the tweaks, balancing and changes introduced through the previously separate God-Machine Chronicles just work to benefit the game even more.


If you want a single source of the core rules for Chronicles of Darkness, or some of the best rules for gritty, modern day roleplaying you can find, you could do worse than buy this book.



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Reap the Whirlwind
por Brennan W. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 01/08/16 15:07:38

A great intro for new players and Sts. The mechanics are explained clearly and succinctly for people new to the genre.



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The Twelve Days of Onyx Condition Cards
por Evelling C. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 01/08/16 12:47:34

Still having fun with this pdf. Recommend! all the conditions are worth reading.



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Onyx Path 2015-2016 Publishing Brochure
por Evelling C. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 01/08/16 12:45:02

Beautiful pictures, informative text and worth taking a look.



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2015 Onyx Path Halloween Cards
por Evelling C. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 01/08/16 12:42:29

Material always fun and well done. Despite being a joke can inspire entire chronic.



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Chronicles of Darkness
por Charles S. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 01/07/16 15:13:19

I think the first edition World of Darkness may be one of my favorite RPG books/systems/games of all time. I played it for years and really enjoyed how fast, flexible, and story driven it was. It was such a perfectly balanced game. I think there were some quirky parts and some of the material from other books such as Armory and Reloaded could have been included in a second edition. There was some room for improvement.


Second edition has ruined the original game's balance both mechanicaly and in abstraction. Playing this feels like a huge step backward. This is a less flexible game with much quirkier and unpolished rules than the previous edition. A sample of my gripes:


The XP system is awful crap and should not have been changed in any way. I hate it.
The change from progressive XP costs for higher ranks to linear costs makes no sense and ensures that everyone has rank 5 in their key abilities and skills. The game should be called World of Experts.
Merits needed to be cleaned up from the previous edition. This edition did fix some issues but they threw out the baby with the bathwater on some of them.
Combat with all of its options and extensive merits is getting bogged down.
Conditions have me flipping all over the book during combat.
Lots of cool material from first edition WoD supplements could have been included but was not.


And now the big gripe:
In first edition "The God Machine" would have been a small supplemental book that could be added to the core rules if desired. And I would not have bought it because I hate it. Its not inspiring to me and it clashes horribly with the plot of my previous WoD stories. Forcing it to be the core setting of the game absolutely ruins the spirit of this game. First edition was a lightweight system and a black backdrop ready and inviting you to craft any dark story kindled by your unique imagination. We played mysteries, ghost stories, and slasher horror games without any care about a damn God Machine. It was a blast and a fresh break from all the other games we used to play. Whatever the story was, it was mysterious and the players were legitimately intrigued to learn the story, because a 40 page explanation of it was not in the damn core rule book!


I give it 2 stars because they kept the first edition cover art.



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V20 Lore of the Clans
por Zachary T. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 01/04/16 12:33:27

Loving this book so, so hard.
Covers clans' (the 13, plus Caitiff and some antitribu--others are mentioned but more in relation to others, alas none of Saulot's get) beginning stories, histories, some alternate bloodlines and factions, merits/flaws, upper-level disciplines, and combination disciplines.
Honestly, though, I've just been reading it almost like a novel. A lot of insight into the clans and a bit of their correlations between each other and even a little into relations with other supernaturals where it's relevant.



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