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Traveller Core Rulebook
by sam w. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/04/2016 09:15:20

An improvement in evert way from MGT1. Mechanics are completely cleaned up, the book layout and art brings in into the 21st century, and previously the "boring & long" space combat has been updated significantly.


I'd like to point out the sole item that people seem concerned about, starship construction rules being moved to the upcoming High Guard book (within a month or two), makes perfect sense and I view it as a positive change. I had never previously created a ship with just the core 1st edition traveller, due to ammendments and changes published in High Guard. In 2nd edition, they avoid this mistake by ensuring a full set of complete and verified construction rules in the book dedicated to such, rather than splitting them over two books.


For a more complete review, please see:
htt-
p://www.rpg.net/reviews/archive/16/16668.phtml


This product is absolutely worth your time and money.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Traveller Core Rulebook
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Traveller Core Rulebook
by Edwin A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/01/2016 14:54:16

OK I read pretty much all of this, and it hasn't changed that much from 1.0. It's a cleanup, and there are some good rules added, but it's not fundamentally very different. I think pretty much everything (Mongoose) will be compatible with it.


In short, if you don't own Traveller, this is the book to buy. If you do own Mongoose 1.0 you probably don't need this unless you're running a campaign, and if you are, you probably will be enticed by something below. I'm looking forward to the other books and will definitely buy them.


caveat: I could be wrong about any of this, it's from memory.


New rules:
damage from Falling/gravity heat/cold poisons, vacuum, radiation, etc. (LOTS on radiation)
power requirements for ship systems
ship critical hits, which may impact power requirements
different repair rules (better engineer rolls use less spare parts, which are expensive)
specific grapple rules
Trade table is flattened. easier to make some money, but harder to score huge
Passenger revenue is more varied and more profitable and therefore more attractive.
Modernization overall (computers don't take huge amounts of space. cooler tech)
Sensor rules are better defined and more interesting
There's an included subsector (setting) which may be interesting, I didn't read it in detail
More interesting non-weapon things to do in ship combat (engineer actions/maneuvering/sensor jamming/etc.)
some of the skills have been rearranged and make more sense. (computers is now under electronics, for example.)
Pre-career education (university or military academy) is available.
Task chains are less swingy -> (can't give huge +/- to someone else by helping)
I think the man combat stuff added some options: parry/dive for cover/dodge, but don't quote me on it
ship maintenance costs now scale, can double-bunk.
Ship construction (see below) is more granular, and has more options.


Cons:
Ship construction is NOT included in this book, I had to extrapolate from some of the beta stuff and the ship examples, but the examples are playable. There are some neat ideas coming in future books based on the beta material (more updated computer and ship parts)
Added boon/bane (roll 3d6 and take highest/lowest two) which was unnecessary I think. I just adjust DM as needed.


things I have not read:
psionics (much)
character generation tables (looks pretty similar though)



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Traveller Core Rulebook
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/29/2016 23:59:02

Traveller Core Rulebook 2nd edition is in my opinion is a good buy and a great introduction to Traveller for a first time player. The layout is very good and the artwork is high quality.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Traveller Core Rulebook
by Megan R. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 01/26/2016 08:40:17

So here it is in all its glory, the latest incarnation of Traveller, harking back to the original 'little black books' of 1977 but brought bang up to date with a ruleset honed by over 30 years of play, discussion and revision. It's nice to see a nod to the original even in the cover - the spaceship that's getting a hammering has Beowulf painted on the side! (Veterans will remember the radio message that graced the original ruleset, a mayday sent out by the Free Trader Beowulf pleading for assistance...)


The Introduction sets it all out. A science fiction game of the far future, with which you can run just about anything you can think of... although there's the well-established setting of the Third Imperium to visit if you don't have time or inclination to create your own universe. Or perhaps you want to bring a favourite science fiction TV show or film to life on your tabletop (or even a book, although they don't mention that for some reason). There's the usual explanation of role-playing, the part players and referee (the traditional Traveller term for a game master) play... and the intriguing reminder that Traveller contains several 'mini-games' such as world creation, trade, and even character creation that allow much of the game to run on 'autopilot', leaving referee and indeed players free to concentrate on the adventure to hand. Naturally, if the result of a die-roll in one of these mini-games doesn't suit, the referee should feel free to change it! Some campaign ideas are provided - broad sweeps, these: do you want to be engaged in trade or military exploits, would you prefer to explore uncharted swathes of space or perhaps the classic Traveller campaign that can involve a bit of all of these takes your fancy? Seeds sewn, this section rounds out with a list of other Traveller books, conventional terminology in gaming and a summary of what Tech Level is all about, with a couple of sentences illustrating each one from TL0 to TL14 (we are at TL7/TL8 if you're curious).


We then begin with Chapter 1: Traveller Creation in which we learn how to generate characters. Holding true to the original (in both senses of the word) Traveller concept in which the process begins with an 18-year-old ready to start his career - no doubt full of ideas about what he will accomplish - and then follows him through it acquiring both skills and a backstory to end with the fully-developed character ready for play. The whole process is fascinating of itself and from the initial inception of this game, many people (myself included!) have amused themselves generating characters without any real intention of using them in an actual game. The interesting thing about this process is that characters come out very realistic - the plans of that eager 18-year-old may or may not have worked out quite like he intended, just as happens in real life.


First of all you roll your character's characteristics, six values that describe your initial physical and mental capabilities, and then a little background based on which sort of planet he grew up which gives a few skills to start with. Then you start building a career in 4-year blocks with each one giving skills, other benefits (money or items) and events. You might choose (or be obliged) to have him change careers once or twice, he might be injured, he might even end up serving time in prison... all this before you decide to begin adventuring. There are always trade-offs: a military career gives you combat skills but if you put yourself in harm's way, you might get harmed, and so on. It's recommended that you generate a party together, taking opportunities to find links as you build your characters' pasts rather than setting out as a handful of complete strangers who inexplicably throw their lot in together and head out to see the universe. It's all human-centric - if you want to play an alien you'll have to wait for the appropriate supplement!


Chapter 2: Skills and Tasks looks at how you use those skills you've just determined that your character has. It describes the task resolution system, which is still based on the classic 'roll 2 dice against a Referee-set difficulty' but the use of modifiers other than those based on the character's own capabilities has been replaced by the use of extra 'boon' or 'bane' dice. These come into play when conditions are beneficial or adverse to the attempt being made. A third die is rolled. If conditions are favourable, the player discards the lowest roll and uses the other two dice to resolve the task as normal. If things are against him, he discards the highest die roll before resolving the task. Neat, and a lot easier than having to determine just how beneficial or otherwise the circumstances might be! The idea is that task difficulties and applicable modifiers ought to be fairly standard for any given task, all you need to decide is if the circumstances under which you are trying to accomplish it warrant a boon or a bane die to be added to your roll.


Next, Chapter 3 explores Combat in great detail. This is also based on the task resolution system, with specific refinements and options appropriate to fighting rather than any other activtiy. Combat is still deadly, and relatively speedy. Characters use their skill in the weapon they are using, and wield them in initiative-order sequence in combat rounds. The system has been streamlined and integrated with personal combat, vehicle combat and starship combat all working the same way. Brawls are not the only dangers to be faced in the far-future, however, so Chapter 4: Encounters and Dangers provides loads of hazards and the game mechanics necessary to deal with them. Environmental dangers abound... but fortunately there is also a section on healing. Animals (which may or may not be hostile) are also covered here with a broad outline of a system to create animals and encounters with them. Several examples are given - and it can be great fun thinking up exotic critters for the worlds the party visits in its travels. Animals, of course, are not the only beings they will encounter, so there is also a section about NPCs which includes quick generation of them and the sort of encounters that may be had... there's even a rudimentary patron encounter system here for generating really fast adventure seeds on the fly.


Next, Chapter 5: Equipment provides a vast array of items that the prudent Traveller ought to think about taking along with him. It starts, however, with a discussion of money in the far future, standards of living, encumberance and such like details, before presenting 'The Core Collection' - an illustrated catalogue of everything from weapons and armour to augments (bodily modifications), medical equipment, and survival gear. It's good-looking and realistic - some parts read like advertisements! - as well as providing the game mechanical information that you need.


The next chapter covers Vehicles - both the types of vehicle that you can have (starting fairly generic but with a very customisable design system) and how to conduct combat and chases using them. Oh, and how to mend the damage caused afterwards too! This chapter is about ground, sea and air vehicles of all sorts, spacecraft get two separate chapters next, one covering operations (everything from running costs and fuel to travel times and repairs and shipboard security) and the other devoted to space combat. This is handled more boardgame style, particularly for ship-to-ship combat, and also looks at boarding actions.


Now we know what to do with them, Chapter 9: Common Spacecraft presents an array of vessels ready for use. Many of them will be familiar to long-time Traveller players, but the presentation is spectactular, with ship statistics appear in a neat panel that gives you all you need to know, whilst deckplans have gone isometric. This gives a nice impression of what it would actually be like to wander around the ship in question and matches up well with the external views. They won't work so well as old-style deckplans for people who like to run combat aboard like a miniatures skirmish though. This has been addressed in the PDF version by supply a separate file of 2D deckplans for at least some of the ships listed. There's a good range of standard craft here from traders and scouts to liners and yachts.


Tucked away next is Chapter 10: Psionics. Not everyone likes to use them, so they are kept separate from the rest of character creation - you'll need to incorporate material from here if you do want to use psionics in your game, although some of the life events give opportunities to discover if a character is psionic or to get training. In the Third Imperium, psionics are frowned upon, indeed mostly illegal... but your universe may be completely different. This chapter gives you all you need to bring them in if you so wish.


Next comes another specialist area: Trade. Many Traveller games include trading - even if it's merely a means to fund your party's travel - and here are all the rules necessary to make it work, with a delightful layered approach that enables you to abstract it to a few die rolls or make it a prominent feature in your game depending on what you prefer.


Finally, there's a chapter on universe and world creation and an overview of the Sindal Subsector, which will be the 'home' of this edition of Traveller. World creation in itself can be as absorbing as character generation, and you can get very detailed if that's your delight. The Sindal Subsector includes several well-developed worlds, so there's somewhere to visit straight away.


Overall, this is a worthy successor to the books that have gone before, beautifully presented and with rules honed by the 30-odd years the core game mechanic has been around, updated and refined to suit contemporary styles yet with the same simple charm of the original little black books it all begin with!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
2300AD: Atlas of the French Arm
by Rory H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/26/2016 03:00:48

Alongside the French Arm Adventures and the Ships of the French Arm (plus the core rules), this presents enough material for running a successful 2300AD campaign for years. Of the three, this is probably the best place to start as the overview gives a good thematic grounding.


The presentation of the line continues to improve - with colour added to some illustrations and maps for the first time and the quality of the writing is good. It's an exotic setting, but well grounded in genuine hard science ideas - and this is good inspiration for those that may be jaded by the looser, more space opera elements of the default Third Imperium Traveller game. On the other hand, if you're not a hard science fan then the opposite may be more apposite - it's kinda like an 'Advanced' Traveller setting in this respect.


In all, though, this setting is really taking shape well now. Recommended.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
2300AD: Atlas of the French Arm
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Traveller Core Rulebook
by Rory H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/26/2016 00:22:02

Traveller has become such a core part of my gaming experience that criticising it is akin to trying to criticise The Beatles - there is something for everyone here. There is so much innate flexibility and gameablity contained within this book, including my absolute favourite game for character generation, world design and many simple but satisfying in-game systems. Some may grumble on cost and/or the decision to make a new edition, but the revisions generally improve game flow and the art and interior decor were much needed. The game still provides a multitude of story ideas in a lean, mean package and for my money, it's the best science fiction game in the market. Thoroughly recommended.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Traveller Core Rulebook
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Traveller Core Rulebook
by Morgan G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/25/2016 17:50:46

This book improves on the 1st edition of Traveller in many ways. The art is considerably better, and many of the careers look to be improved, with handy charts for navigating the complex character creation that Traveller has always used. It fixes many of the problems I had with 1e. So why 2 stars? Because it's $30 for less content than the 1e corebook, despite a higher pagecount. While the book has retained one of the quintessential traveller rules bits - world/universe creation - it has needlessly omitted starship design. This is a huge part of the utility of Traveller and vastly reduces the books value as a single volume RPG resource. This would be less irritating if the book didn't waste pages with overly designed tables (the weapon tables are tremendously inefficient wastes of space) and functional advertising for upcoming products that look like they'll be mandatory to get the same material we got in the 1e corebook.


Is it bad? That remains to be seen. The mechanics don't look like the same level of disaster that 1e's Vehicle books or Mercenary was, but in their incomplete state and the clear assumption that future supplements will be mandatory purchases, along with some issues related to the files (wonkiness with the printer friendly version, etc) ensures that I'll be looking elsewhere for my Space Opera fix.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
2300AD: The Tricolore's Shadow
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/17/2016 08:48:19

A short scenario, some repetition and a contradiction. However, while it needs a bit of work on it to work this product provides an interesting, even imaginative, starting scenario to work with saving me rather a lot of effort.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
2300AD: The Tricolore's Shadow
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Special Supplement 3: Vehicle Upgrade Manual
by James C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/04/2016 02:15:33

This book is really helpful for customizing your current vehicles even more. My players love it.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Special Supplement 3: Vehicle Upgrade Manual
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Vikings of Legend
by Darren P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/25/2015 13:11:04

I got the RQ6 essentials. Then got out my old RQ2 Vikings. Did a one night session, and by popular demand then 5 more nights. I bought this for more information, not realising it is much like RQ2 Vikings - but with more and varied information. Works great with RQ6.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Vikings of Legend
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Traveller Core Rulebook Beta Playtest
by Daniel C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/03/2015 14:06:02

I am having a great time both reading the various beta materials as they come out and in posting feedback and interacting with others in the Beta forum on Mongoose's website forum.


They have made some changes to the original Mongoose Traveller rules. But it si still clearly a Traveller based game. Some of the changes feel more like clean ups but others are quite a new change to the game. Do I think this product is for everyone? No. If you do nto plan to play some test games and offer feedback, the product will seem too unfinished and in need of fixing. But if you are willing to read, play, offer feedback, offer ideas, and help discuss/debate various items within the rules than this product could eb well worth the money.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Traveller Core Rulebook Beta Playtest
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Traveller Core Rulebook Beta Playtest
by Danny S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/24/2015 23:44:37

This is a beta version, so this review is more about the potential. The rules of classic traveller are here amended and updated. Career paths are unified and enhanced for playability. Mechanics cover the use of skills more effectively. Some features such as ship design, robots and "technology makers" are moved out of the core. Less emphasis on planetary biosphere creation as well. Structures are present for campaign styles such as trade based, military and exploration based campaigns. Background used in the core rules is "Third Imperium" but only as needed to give a rule some context. Action rules are soundly rationalised. The bane and boon mechanism, a la advantage/disadvantage from D&D and Call of Cthulhu, doesn't seem properly utilised and seems somewhat skewed in a 2d6 based system.


The play test forum that you get automatic access to is fairly active. Much of the rules has stabilised but some parts such as post creation skill development are in flux. I find there is still a tendency to think about digital technology in 1990s terms.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Traveller Alien [BUNDLE]
by Daniel C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/20/2015 00:37:49

I found the books very informative. I do wish they offered books on the other Major races. Seems odd to do all but two.


I also would love to know what, if anything, will change with the 2nd edition they are working on right now.


In any case, glad I bought this.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Traveller Alien [BUNDLE]
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Encyclopaedia Arcane Constructs
by Ben D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/16/2015 14:35:54

A very nice looking book, with very useful formats for making or modifying constructs in a 3.5/Pathfinder game. While many equilivant constructs can be found in Monster Manuals/Bestiaries for a cheaper gp cost, building a completely customized construct has a great appeal.


Since I'm playing as a wizard that wants to build a construct body for themselves, the special construct abilities actually give you a chance to do that.


Great book if your character wants constructs, or if you want to throw new construct builds at players who memorize monster stats.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Encyclopaedia Arcane Constructs
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Traveller Core Rulebook Beta Playtest
by Joseph G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/16/2015 13:22:07

So far, so good. It's very similar to Mongoose Traveller, but cleaner in some ways. I can't wait to actually play it.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Traveller Core Rulebook Beta Playtest
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