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Magnum Fury
by James D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/08/2017 08:01:49

There's really only one undisputed king of action movie genre emulation when it comes to tabletop games, and that's first edition Feng Shui. Everything else is a pale imitation, no matter when those imitations came out chronologically - even before Feng Shui did. Trying to create a genre emulation RPG in this arena is, then, a pretty goddamn ballsy move.

Magnum Fury by Leonard A. Pimentel for LakeSide Games attempts to recreate the feel of more western action movies of the 80s and 90s, where Feng Shui is more about the over-the-top action of wire-work Kung Fu epics from Golden Harvest and their ilk. Here it's more about Die Hard than Zu Warriors and that means there is some different emphasis.

MF definitely takes some cues from Feng Shui, especially in the way it handles 'Mooks' and things, but it's a bit more open in terms of character creation and drops the most defining feature of Feng Shui - stunts. This is a little disappointing, but also thematically better fits what happens in 80s style films.

The system is simple and quick, using 2d6 (3 if you have advantage) and adding bonuses to see if you fail, succeed with a cost, or succeed outright. The idea of 'No', 'Yes, but' and 'Yes' is something I've played around with in games - but more expanded - and it does definitely help drive the narrative aspect of these sorts of games mechanically. You can think of Die Hard as a game in which John's player keeps rolling 'Yes, but...' results.

Characters are primarily defined by their style (such as 'Cerebral' or 'Dangerous', their career, such as 'Private Detective' or 'Assassin' and their drive and flaw. Everything else - abilities and so on - are essentially set dressing.

There's nothing massively innovative here, but its an interesting 'Frankenstein' of game concepts, brought together in an effective and fun package, presented in a format that suits a laptop screen rather than print. It knows its a one-off, con-slot or fill in type game and plays to that strength.

Personally, I'd use it to run players through the plots of some god-awful 'straight to video' actions flicks of the 80s, such as frequently appear on Red Letter Media's 'Best of the Worst'. These films, weirdly, often make fantastic inspiration for RPGs.

At 24 pages this is pretty slim, but it doesn't need to be huge. At $3.00 that's about right (perhaps 50 cents over what I'd charge) but it's definitely worth a shot.

Style: 4/5 Substance: 3/5 Overall: 3.5/5 A great little filler game. For three bucks you can hardly go wrong.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Magnum Fury
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Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules
by Alex J. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/07/2017 13:59:45

A very good product!

I enjoyed the relative simplicity of the rules, which make for a fairly light system that allows for more narrative freedom, rather than spending too much time on numbers and intricate rules. It also alleviates some of the pressure on the GM by making it more player-driven, which seems like it can make for a very enjoyable system for players who just want a fun, lighter experience. There could have been more examples of gameplay, to help demonstrate the system for players who may not be familiar with this type of dice system and game flow, but overall I'm very pleased.

Recommended for GMs and players who prefer a more narrative-driven game, but with more focus on somewhat stereotypical heroism rather than the usual, greyer morality other systems might present. All in good fun, of course.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules
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Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules
by lidor b. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/10/2017 13:21:41

I liked the abstract approach of the rules, they are clear and simple, not to crunchy, and versatile, we only did one session so far but it was a huge success



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Prowlers & Paragons Freebies [BUNDLE]
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/08/2016 04:52:40

Prowlers & Paragons is a great new addition to roleplaying games. It shifts focus from an effect based, "fat loot" game with complex rules, to a very simple and streamlined game which focuses on the narration of the game, and it works so well! The Freebies Bundle contains twelve Quick Start Heroes and a Quick Start Issue, detailing the most important rules and gives you a small adventure to try out.

And you should try it out, the game is brilliant! I have written a review in the Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules, if you want to know more about what the game is all about.

Many of the Quick Start Heroes can be traced back to iconic Superheroes from Marvel or DC Comics. This is not a downside, in my opinion. Rather it shows the players that it’s ok to copy and reimagine famous and favorite characters, it’s the roleplaying that makes them unique in the end.

The only thing I want to question is the gender stereotypes. I think it’s sad that out of twelve unique heroes, only two are female. And one of the two is a single mom… Really? Why?! I felt that this was a weird decision in an otherwise very well thought-out game. And my female players also felt that it left them feeling a little bit underwhelmed. They looked forward to a hero who, for once, wasn’t wearing a chainmail bikini. And they got a single mom… Oh, and a supermodel (that’s the second female character right there).

I realize how hard it can be to make use of stereotypes in a way that creates a sense of instant recognition and at the same time doesn’t make too heavy use of it and end up alienating different groups of people. Sadly, in this, I think the creators failed.

Norms are hard to change, since they are such an integral part of ourselves that we don’t really think about or question. That’s why I have started to work with this in a standardized way on my own: now, whenever I have finished creating an adventure, I flip all the genders of my characters. It’s an interesting experience and really opens up for some great discussions.

Gender issues aside, try the game out! Prowlers & Paragons deserves way more publicity and credit than it gets! The core mechanics are well made, easy to handle and lets you really get into that childhood dream of playing a Superhero!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Prowlers & Paragons Freebies [BUNDLE]
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Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/08/2016 04:36:31

I absolutely love Prowlers & Paragons! The choice of shifting focus from effect based, "fat loot" and complex rules to a very simple and streamlined base which instead focuses on the narration of the game, is just brilliant. The system works by integrating the players into the storytelling, in Prowlers & Paragons it's not just your GM who does the talking, and it’s awesome!

All in all, I very much recommend this game to people who would like to try something different with focus being on the roleplaying.

I've played a few sessions now and my players loved it. It took some time getting used to but we all feel that we're getting better and better at it. Embellishments are the hardest, by far. As I said, we all found that we were getting better and better at it, but even so, I would have liked some examples in the book for a few different scenarios, just to make the transition from regular pen and paper roleplaying games to this one a little bit easier.

Character creation is excellent, it’s quick and expansive without overburdening new players and GMs. The creators have made some Quick Start Heroes, which help get the imagination going for new players who get overwhelmed with the idea of creating their own unique hero. I found these to be good, with some exceptions, which I write about in my review of Prowlers & Paragons Freebies Bundle. I love that when the players are finalizing their characters they get to make up details about other players’ characters. This builds a tight team and really gets the creativity going!

Rule-wise the Core Rulebook covers just about everything you could want. It also has a great section for GMs who need help creating settings, adventures and the like. The only thing I am missing here is a short introduction to the world the game is set to play out in. Why are there superheroes? As a GM I can create my own reasons but I would have loved to know more from the developers themselves. Gear in the game works well, they give a bonus to certain skills but are not necessary if you don’t want them.

Combat is quick and easy to understand. The ability to use Resolve to use your own powers in a creative way is awesome. I had a player use his rocket-fist attack as a grappling hook and there was no need to look through tons of different rules and role fourteen different dice. He just paid one Resolve and rolled two fewer d6s. That's it. In the end I created a cheat-sheet for the different ways you can earn and spend Resolve, which helped my players a lot, so I recommend this to people who are starting playing the game. Putting the player in charge of their own character’s Flaws is great, although it takes some getting used to. I feel that the GM has a big responsibility here to get the idea going, but once it did, my players made great use of it.

The premade adventure is good. It gets right into the action and leaves quite a few plot hooks for future adventures. It gives you a lot of opportunities to create funny moments and introduce the players to the system. But maybe, just maybe, the start of the adventure is a little too… intense to allow the players to get to know the system right of the bat. It starts with several different characters involved in one combat scenario, where three groups have different agendas and the players are right in the middle of it all. In the end, it worked out fine, but if your players are new to roleplaying in general, I think I would recommend you to try a test combat first, outside of the adventure, just to get the core mechanics and concepts in place.

Prowlers & Paragons is a game that deserves much bigger credit than it has gotten so far. It deserves to be talked about, tested and played. It’s just that good.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules
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Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules
by charles h. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/02/2016 12:41:36

The good: A fast and easy game system you can pick up quick and jump right in to. Pretty open-ended to allow you to do most anything with out getting so bogged down in charts and numbers that you miss the point of playing a fun superhero game. The bad: doesn't look like it's been supported for a couple of years.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules
by Curt M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/17/2016 22:13:06

I posted a video review here: https://youtu.be/FiGAI4dxWg0



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules
by keith b. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/19/2015 09:59:10

I bought P&P a while ago along with a couple other games. This one got pushed to the bottom of the pile and forgotten for flashier or newer style games of descriptor driven. One day I saw it in my library and had no clue what P&P was. I was greatly surprised. While not being greatly innovative in any way the game mechanics are tried, tested and true. rolling 6 sided dice equal to the trait or power in question counting even numbers as successes and counting any 6 as a success and roll again hoping for more even numbers and especially a 6. You then compare your success against a number set by the gm or by a contested roll vs another being or item, etc.. Mundane trait, super traits, perks and flaws make up your character. there is quite a variety of each, not overloaded but having the skills , powers and everything needed. easy to understand costs without a lot of number crunching. there are quite a few samples of animals, NPCs, Archtypes, Weapons, armors, and vehicles that even though a fleshed out game setting is not provided you can still jump in to playing with minimal setup. With a little prep time for the GM and 5 minutes for new players you could be running a new game with the sample adventure because the rules are so easy and most players will be familiar with a variation of the rules. P&P is presented very well with some very nice art work. Not being my thing I won't comment to much but it is better than some other art work in other games by far. What I love is the balance between number crunching during creation and playing vs the open ended narrative of how powers work and how they are resolved. depending on degree of success or failure both the GM and the player could add their input on what happens during an action. If you have any doubts try the quickstart rules and download the free samples. what you will see is only touching on the game and I guarantee that what it doesn't have in the quickstart is worth getting in the core rules. Also on their web site is a free creation cheat sheet. listed is all the abilities and gear you will use in the game. just take a look, it is worth it.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules
by Lee L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/21/2015 23:29:52

P&P is one of the best Supers games I have ever purchased. It is a very well done system with a flexible character creation system like some of the other Supers RPGs I have loved in the past. The system is narrative enough to make a cinematic game with a lot of great role play. The system uses a lot of 6 sided dice and is unusual in that the important part is to roll evens on the dice. If you roll a 6, you get a success and get to roll that die again. Then you compare your success to the targets successes and the difference determines who will get to describe the outcome and if the opponent gets to embellish upon the final outcome. If you are wanting to see more, check out the Quick Start rules for free here on DriveThru.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules
by Forrest M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/01/2014 15:20:49

It has been a long time since I have just read a game from cover to cover in short span of time, but this was the case with P&P. I downloaded the QuickStart issue on Friday and skimmed through it. By Saturday night, I bought the core game, which was on sale for 4.95 (what a steal for a PDF of the core system). Started reading that night and finished it Sunday morning. Great job, LakeSide Game!

The rules are very light and so easy to digest that it allows you to just flow through the book. The layout is well done and all the writing moves really well. The art design is colorful and evocative of the genre that they are wanting to spotlight.

The core book has enough templates and archetypes to help a group get started with their own story, but doesn't include a setting world with characters and groups to build off of. That being said, one can get their free QuickStart Characters if they need some fully fleshed out examples. I don't mind that it doesn't have a world setting already built in, but hope that LakeSide is successful with this line and creates a sourcebook that might build out a world setting.

In a world where we have a glut of superhero games, P&P is one that should be checked out. It is 5 Stars in my book.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules
by Jay S. A. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 05/01/2014 07:06:45

Prowlers & Paragons is a neat little Supers game with eye-catching artwork, easy-to-read layout and sensible mechanics that are relatively easy to learn. The rules themselves aren't "new" or innovative, but they work, and with the sheer number of supers games out there, having one that has mechanics that are easy to run with without getting into too much detail is a good thing.

The game itself has a strong handle on what supers games it can run, and it admittedly broad enough to be able to run games of a more Pulp persuasion, as well as a few anime-inspired stories as well. Easy to learn, written in a friendly and approachable manner, the game makes for a great entry-level game for new GMs eager to run supers but are intimidated by complex mechanics.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Prowlers & Paragons Quickstart Issue
by Emma M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/02/2013 00:00:00

Great little system. A surprising amount of depth for such a small book, and a great deal of options. Just wish it'd come out in hardcopy so my technophobe GM will run it!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Prowlers & Paragons Quickstart Issue
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Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules
by Kyle W. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 11/06/2013 15:19:15

Prowlers and Paragons is a tabletop game that attempts to make everyone think it's a D&D retro clone but is actually a superhero game with an original, if not terribly innovative, system that is more than worthy of standing on its own merits. As a superhero game, it does a good job of providing a framework for highly-narrative adventures and, while it may not have the boon of a major comics publisher's licensing deal it is, in my opinion, still as good as any of the alternatives, if not better in certain ways.

Prowlers and Paragons is highly narrative in focus, and as such it doesn't go into incredible amounts of mechanical detail, something that I think makes it work a lot better. It's got a loose, at best, structure, but it is also focuses on its subject in such a way that it doesn't really need a whole lot of build-up and arbitrary crunch to do what it does, with a carefully designed set of powers, abilities, and core attributes that adequately emulate both a generic modern setting with only slightly above average protagonists and more powerful cape-wearing adventures.

Mechanically, when I was reading through Prowlers and Paragons it seemed to be most similar to the D6 system, which is seeing a resurgence in popular use, though with successes instead of a sum, something that I think adds greatly to the style of the game, though the method of counting evens as successes as opposed to just using 4-6 is a little bit against the grain. Still, it's a working system that feels like it's mechanically designed to allow for the subject matter.

My two criticisms for the system are that while it's an interesting interpretation, it's not really doing anything that hasn't been done before; it's clearly something capable of standing on its own and it doesn't owe blind allegiance to any particular other system, at least as far as I can tell, but it's also lacking any particularly new or distinct feature that makes it anything beyond what prior games have offered; it also lacks a certain degree of flexibility in characters, and balancing is a bit of a concern-some powers are available with very similar analogues, others have the opportunity to quickly become unchecked if the GM doesn't pay close enough attention to players' characters, something which should happen, but often doesn't with busy GM's, and the system is expansive enough that there are enough potential exploitative builds to slip past an inattentive or poorly practiced GM.

Looking at the writing, Prowlers and Paragons is actually rather manageable; it's got very little fluff, but it has some examples and humor inserted into the text so that it doesn't become too overbearingly difficult. It doesn't really have any major memorable fluff, though, in part because it does a very good job at essentially allowing people to recreate legally distinct but visually similar adventures to those of characters owned by large comic distributors, but it's also not particularly bland or boring; it may not have fun stuff scattered throughout but it enjoys itself enough that it's not bland and can mess around a little.

Artistically, the book actually is pretty satisfying. My only real gripe with it is that there was at least one picture in which aliasing was an issue on the art; it tends to just mirror and repeat its page wrappers, but they change out every chapter so you're not staring at the same thing for the whole prolonged read. It brings back fond memories of comics for me, which is enough to make it successful. There's a couple of typesetting issues throughout, but these are largely inconsequential in light of the fact that it still does a very good job getting the vibe of a superhero adventure down without becoming illegible or cramming it down the reader's throat.

So, in short: Prowlers and Paragons doesn't innovate, but it's also a very solid product that does its job well and doesn't waste time. There's a few minor flaws with it, but for the most part it only loses points on account of the fact that it's just not anything new-it's a technically solid execution of a design that I'd feel comfortable recommending to anyone looking for an entry to the genre.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules
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Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules
by Justin W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/17/2013 05:39:18

Having soaked up the pages of P&P, I have to say I am very impressed. P&P manages to provide dozens of powers and choices for a player without becoming an exercise in accountancy that point-buy systems usually suffer from. There are also extensive examples so its possible to just choose a template and make a few tweaks. The system is narratively driven (for example, combat ranges are close, distant and visual) but with enough crunch during combat to keep things interesting. Running a superhero battle without worrying about the specific size of area affect bursts, or how many metres you punch a supervillain seems like a perfect system to me and I cant wait to try it out. The system is also elegantly designed- mostly everything is rated in dice (the number of six-sided dice you roll, counting even results as successes and rolling an additional die if you roll a 6). Clearly influenced by the Storyteller system, it's a good, solid system and you can avoid rolling buckets of dice by taking the average (scoring 1 success for every 2 dice in your trait) P&P is very much a toolkit for the Gm who wants to run a supers game- there is plenty of advice regarding world-building and scenarios, and the game offers power levels from mundane heroes right up to cosmic level entities. There is also advice on what tone the GM is after, from gritty realism to light relief (such as the Tick). You wont find any prebuilt villains or a setting, but there are plenty of templates of superhero archetypes, as well as a host of mundane npcs, animals and creatures (yes including dinosaurs!). As you read through the many traits and perks, its clear where the inspiration has come from so using P&P for an existing superhero setting, such as DC, Marvel, the Authority, Wildcards or Watchmen, wouldnt be that difficult. That said, a supervillain supplement, or P&P setting would be welcome.
So in conclusion I would say if you like the freedom of choice of a point-buy system, such as Mutants and Masterminds or Champions, but prefer narrative games such as Icons or Marvel Heroic Roleplaying, P&P manages to combine both approaches in one streamlined elegant system. As the Gm you wont be able to hit the ground running with a campaign, but there is plenty of help to either create your own world or adapt one you like.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Prowlers & Paragons Core Rules
by Chris A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/15/2013 19:03:31

I've yet to go through the book in depth, but after an hour or so with P&P, I'm super impressed. The writing is crisp, the rules seem solid and the book gives you everything you need to start playing supers right away. Want archetypes? You got 'em. Animal templates? Check. Full lists of weapons, Armour, vehicles and gizmos? Definitely. And more - lots more.

Oh, and the art? Gorgeous. Did I say I was super impressed? Well that's cause the game looks awesome. I'll update the review soon, once I've had a chance to play.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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