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Guarding Galaxy XXX
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 05/25/2017 04:40:14

An Endzeitgeist.com review

This modules, formerly known as Guardians of Galaxy XXX, clocks in at 10 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page full-color artwork doubling as back cover, 1/2 page editorial, leaving us with 7.5 pages of content, so let's take a look!

This module is intended for use with Kort'thalis Publishing's Alpha Blue RPG, which centers on capturing the aesthetics of 70s and 80s scifi-porn-parodies. As such, the usual disclaimer regarding adult topics applies. If you're not familiar with the system and its tropes and themes, I have reviewed the 3 core supplements for it and assume familiarity with the respective rules in this review. These reviews would also be a nice place to ascertain whether or not you'll be comfortable with the explicit content.

All right, that disclaimer out of the way, let's dive right in - this means that, from here on out, the SPOILERS reign. Potential players should jump to the conclusion.

...

..

.

All right, still around? Only SDMs here? Great! So, the players are accidentally awakened from cryosleep, due to a malfunction of their pod-series. You see, a man named Kaufman wanted to awaken a soldier called Rory - who listens, as do the PCs, to the briefing...only to nonchalantly go back to sleep...so it'll be up to the ragtag band of spacers to save Galaxy XXX from certain doom...that is, after one of them got a call via the conveniently retro cellphone attached to the cryopod, promising phone-sex. This is Alpha Blue, after all.

After that, the PCs go into decontamination. Which sports a 1 in 6 chance to die due to a fleshmelting allergic reaction. No save. Yeah, that's just frustrating and needlessly dickish. It's not even funny. In the locker room after decontamination, the PCs, if they're crafty, can witness peep-hole style voyeurism and then, it's time to suit up. Just as the PCs are being briefed, they witness a man succumbing to a grape soda, which turns him into a tentacle monster, the first combat here.

After this encounter, the PCs meet three hipster space wizards who propose a slave-trade and try to recruit the PCs to deliver the doomsday device for them instead. Then, it's time to man a space craft - and suddenly, the PCs get a communiqué from the Targons. After that, we'll have ship-to-ship combat (not the strongest suite of Alpha Blue) and, no matter how it goes, the PCs will end up on P'oon's orbit. On the planet, the PCs will meet the gangster J'aemz Khaan, who take the PCs to his bunker - turns out, there are gigantic desert worms attracted by rhythmic beats. The man is also allied with a nasty dark zedi named Obsidian Shadow. The doomsday device is close and if the PCs don't interfere, the villains will get it - once they're both dead, it'll be up to the PCs to figure out what to do next. Much like Slippery When Wet, the module ends rather abruptly.

Conclusion:

Editing and formatting are very good, I noticed no severe issues. Layout adheres to a nice two-column standard with colored veins in the background. The pdf sports nice b/w-artworks - nothing to complain in the aesthetics department. The pdf comes fully bookmarked for your convenience - kudos for going the extra mile there!

Venger As'Nas Satanis delivers a fun little module - sure, it has nothing to do with "Guardians of the Galaxy", but that holds true for more than one scifi-porn-parody, so no complaints in that regard. Now, I totally understand that I am, ultimately, a huge ass here - this is a FREE module, so what are you waiting for? If you like Alpha Blue, you can certainly use this pdf! On a neutral, structural analysis side, I think that the end of the module is rather sudden. The middle finger that is the decontamination also isn't exactly my idea of fun, but yeah. Structurally, this isn't the best module - it is, however, a proper and fully-detailed, short module, which makes it superior to all the adventure-sketches usually found in the Alpha Blue supplements - you can just open this pdf and play, which makes it great for convention-style gaming. It's not perfect, but it's hard to argue with FREE. Considering that, I arrive at a final verdict of 4 stars - a good offering for fans of Alpha Blue.

Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Guarding Galaxy XXX
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Death Race: Fury Road
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 05/16/2017 05:41:39

An Endzeitgeist.com review

This pdf clocks in at 13 pages, 1 page front cover, 1/2 page of editorial, leaving us with 11.5 pages of content, so let's take a look!

So, what is this? Well, it's an unrepentant love-letter to the eponymous Mad Max-movie: The planet's Chog-dath Major, wrecked by mega-corporations, then taken over by the wizard collective - and this blend of the fantastic and scifi pretty much means that this is, indeed, intended to be used in conjunction with either the Crimson Dragon Slayer or Alpha Blue games - as long as the game sports the VSD6-engine, you'll be good to go.

There are 12 reasons to participate in a death race and the pdf does come with simple rules for betting on a death race: Betting on the correct winner nets 3 x the waged amount, 1st or 2nd place nets you twice the amount and betting correctly on someone scoring either 1st, 2nd or 3rd place nets you half the amount wagered. 12 alternate wagers are included, with 6 sample wagered goods range from gold to magic items.

So, how does the death race work? A player is picked to go first, he rolls a d%, then it's the next player's turn, etc. - races range from 3 such rolls to 7 in length. Weird, from a didactic point of view: Traps and ambushes are depicted before the race base mechanics: Picking up a weapon on the round nets +1 on a d4 table. Every time one is attacked by an opponent with a weapon, there's a 2 in 6 chance it may be taken from them. An ambush has a 1 in 4 chance of killing the ambusher. A success (4) equals a success and requires a saving throw - if you don't use your game's default chart, you may roll on one at the back of the pdf: d4, 1 = death, 2 = out and at 0 health, 3 = lose half health (and further rolls of 3 force you to reroll for either 1 or 2 and 4 = escaping unscathed. A 5 on the ambush table ( 4 + weapon's bonus +1) nets a no-save instant-kill.

Yeah, death races are, surprise, deadly. S, how are winners determined? You roll a d20 at the end of the race. The result is the place the character scores. So skill or the like...has absolutely nothing to do with placement. Which is patently unrewarding. More feasible and fun would be the scoring system: Surviving encounters, having sex while racing (remember, Alpha Blue tie-in...but if you do, you have disadvantage on the placement d20-roll), killing foes - all net points, while being knocked unconscious or destroying the planet net penalties. This may be combined with the placement system, but frankly, I wished it had been expanded further and/or replaced the lame d20-roll.

What's not lame at all, though, would be the massive d100-table with, bingo, 100 entries long - it makes up the vast majority of the pdf and contains a wide variety of effects/things that happen: a rolled 1 here means that you're vaporized, no save. You may also happen upon a Sam & Max Hit the Road reference and be captured by hillbillies, encounter buzzsaw vehicles...or you have unfortunately partaken in an energy-drink that nets you fast-acting ebola...and only a 1 in 4 chance of surviving it. 1 in 4 chances of not inadvertently ending in the Forbidden Zone, finding a Walther PPK...but there also are beneficial rolls: Having one's favorite Heavy Metal song hit radio lets you ignore the next unfavorable roll (hey, happens rarely enough, right, my fellow metalheads?) and by driving through the right cloud, you may gain a mutation. You may be frozen solid by a Crimson Dragon, abducted by aliens...A LOT of the effects rolled here boil down to hilarious and very likely demises...so if you're attached to your PC, newsflash, you probably shouldn't have participated in a race that has "DEATH" in the name.

Conclusion:

Editing and formatting are very good, I noticed no glaring glitches. Layout adheres to a nice two-column full-color standard and sports reddish veins. The pdf has amazing b/w-interior artwork to accompany the nice cover piece. The pdf comes in two-versions, with the second being more printer-friendly. The pdf comes with detailed, nested bookmarks for your convenience.

Andrew "Zakero" Moore and Venger As'Nas Satanis provide a cool little pdf, but you need to know what you're getting into: This is, from a player-perspective, not the best simulator of a complex race - it is ridiculously lethal (even for Venger's games, and that says something!) and the placement mechanics are really, really unrewarding. At the same time, if you're looking for a hilariously over-the-top fun way of seeing your characters (or NPCs) perish in entertaining ways, then this delivers in SPADES. There is fun to be had here, for sure, and the table for race-events brims with creativity. I just wished the race's actual mechanics would be on par with the creative events...and that there'd be more that influences the rolls. As written, a lot of the events really screw over the character (You've retroactively drunk lethal crap xyz...) and force unlikely survival rolls without much chances of influencing anything. This is cool for one-shots and quick-play/convention-gaming, but groups playing a prolonged campaign in VSD6-systems may want to look at this carefully before going for it.

That being said, this is FREE. It was written as a bonus for the Trinity of Awesome+1 book (where you can also find it in print as a fourth chapter) - and as such, it makes for a nice bonus. Not for every group, but if you're looking for a Fury Road that's truly and ludicrously over-the-top, then this delivers. Just replace those dumb, player-demoralizing placement rules. My final verdict, taking into account that this is FREE, will be 3.5 stars, rounded up for the purpose of this platform.

Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Death Race: Fury Road
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Slippery When Wet
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 05/15/2017 05:45:06

An Endzeitgeist.com review

This module for the Alpha Blue RPG clocks in at 15 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, leaving us with 13 pages of content, so let's take a look!

At this point, I expect you're familiar with Alpha Blue - it's a RPG designed in the vein of 70s and 80s scifi-porn-parodies and thus contains copious amounts of sleaze and associated themes. I covered all three big supplements for it, so if you're not familiar with the game or unsure whether this is for you, take a look at the respective reviews. Rules-wise, we have a variant of the VSD6-engine, so if you're familiar with Venger's "The Outer Presence" or "Crimson Dragon Slayer"-games, you'll know how to play the game.

We begin this pdf with a 1-page summary of how to create and use anticipation (particularly in the context of Alpha Blue) before getting a d20-table of spacer-exclamations. Interesting: The pdf also acknowledges the sometimes frustrating lethality of the game and offers a potential way of dealing with that: For only 50K, you can get a device that generates such second chances...but may also generate multiverse malfunctions...which, in Alpha Blue,can have horrific consequences. I mean, who would want to live in a version of reality where Hitler won, Escape from New York's the state of the US and Smash Mouth is the biggest band ever known? Yeah, figured as much.

So, that out of the way, let's talk adventure! The following contains SPOILERS. Only SDMs should continue to read; players should jump to the conclusion.

...

..

.

All right, so the mentad would be biological computers that hail from a galaxy where robotic uprisings and the like were all too common - the Sa'rung galaxy. These biological computers maintained the level civilization had achieved...but as such machines, they had no sex, no sleaze, no porn...and then, the parasitic zantians migrated to that galaxy and began infecting mentads, granting these insectoid creatures access to the Network, a kind of extranet/repository of collective knowledge...and within hides the well-hidden last shred of porn, the naked pictures of Felicity Hance...and if the zantians can find those, they'd have the power to dominate the galaxy. Why? How? Well...she's pretty, I guess?

The PCs witness a hyperspace jump close to them, which disables their warp drive...and the ship has initiated its self-destruct protocol, so they better start communications right now. The vessel is piloted by a G'nord carrying evidence of the last piece of Felicity Jace's porn on a data crystal - with the mentad hot on the heels of the alien. The alien thinks that it's life is disposable if the universe continues to have a chance to see Felicity naked...but whether they save the alien or not, they won't be able to access the data-crystal - for that, they'll have to go to Neo Aquarius...which is currently in the throes of all out warfare. The PCs will have to hijack an underwater vessel while war's all around (12 sample events and 6 looting results provided - and then, they'll pilot the underwater vessel "bearded clam" - which is btw. once again lavishly mapped by Glynn Seal and included as a high-res jpg as well) - REALLY cool: For once, we get detailed explanations of the functions of the vessel - can we have those for all Alpha Blue vessels, please? It really helps and adds greatly to the immersion.

Within the depths, The PCs get a chance to have sex with mermaids (potentially being compelled to assassinate a chancellor...), battle/escape a leviathan and finally reach Aqua Vulva - if they lost time due to mermaid sex, the PCs will be late and have to take the porn of Jance from the mentads - otherwise they'll be in time. The aforementioned chancellor is btw. a waste of skin and, for once, a forced assassination could be not necessarily the worst thing the PCs could do. In order to secure the mighty porn, however, the PCs will have to deal with the guy that the chancellor dealt with: A former knight in black satin and zedi with his disciples, none other than dread Darth Facepalm! And yes, he has a nasty trick to get away and is set up as a really despicable and hilarious recurring villain. His b/w-artwork, unlike that of the mermaids, is also really cool!

...and then, the module just stops. I don't mean "And so the PCs have saved the day and gain x" - I mean literally. The module just STOPS. Darth Facepalm's escaped, PCs have the porn...so what now? Nothing's resolved. Why is the porn so powerful? No clue. Sure, that kinda works within the context of Alpha Blue, but it's jarringly abrupt nonetheless.

Conclusion:

Editing and formatting are very good, I noticed no serious glitches. Layout adheres to a nice two-column standard in b/w, set against a slightly blue-tinted background with subdued veins. a Printer-friendly version has been included. Artworks are in b/w and range from the usual, high quality to a rather jarring piece for the mermaids. The pdf comes fully bookmarked for your convenience (kudos!) and the cartography of the ship is AMAZING and in full-color. Getting the high-res jpg being the icing on the cake.

So, none of the Alpha Blue scenarios contained in any of the sourcebooks really worked well for me - they were basically very barebones sketches presenting ideas and not much rules to supplement them. This is different: From monster/NPC-stats to the details of the vessel to the fitting battle-field mechanics, there is some actual game to supplement the, as always, hilariously over-the-top ideas.

In fact, this is, BY FAR, the best scenario currently available for Alpha Blue - at least when compared with the sketches in the modules. When compared with Venger's other adventures from the Trinity of Awesome +1, it would frankly be, at least for me as a person, better than "A Green Jewel They Must Possess." As a reviewer, though, I do consider the module's end to be too abrupt - I don't know if this is sequel-bait of not, but personally, I think it deserves, no, needs a sequel to tie up all the loose ends. (Haha...sorry, will punch myself later for that...)

All in all, we have a fun scenario and hence, my final verdict will clock in at 4.5 stars, though I don't feel like I can round up for it. If you're enjoying Alpha Blue and have no time to flesh out adventure-sketches, then consider this a must-own, if not perfect, scenario for a fair price.

Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Slippery When Wet
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Crimson Dragon Slayer 1.11
by Jack B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/11/2017 11:43:26

I read through a lot of rule systems...mainly because I am an admitted mechanics junkie. What I look for in a game is a rules system that streamlines play and emphasizes story-telling. So many times I flip through a system and toss it aside with a few take away items. BUT, CDS 1.11 absolutely captivated me....I was blown away with it's simplicity while really encompassing a captivating game system. The rules are very well written and you can literally get up and running in a few minutes (that includes the Dragon Master reading and prepping the sample adventure). The damage and magic systems fit my style of play perfectly.

Here's another very strong point about this game: the author is SUPER reposnive to questions and will bend over backwards to help clear things up. For example, I had a couple of questions about how healing via Divinity and in the blink of an eye Venger wrote me back with the folowing suggestion (You can also see this response on his site at http://www.draconicmagazine.com/articles/crimson-dragon-slayer-cleric-question ):

Thanks for the email, Jack. Glad you're enjoying Crimson Dragon Slayer!

How clerical abilities are handled probably depends on the game... here are some questions to ask. How much power do the Gods have and how much power is bestowed upon their servants? How frequently do the adventurers encounter demons, aberrations, undead, and otherwordly foes? Has the cleric been dutiful, faithful, corrupted, or susceptible to temptation? Are there multiple clerics in the party? What's the size and strength of the party? How tough do you want the game to be? And how heroic/dark is the world the PCs are living in?

Basically, the short answer is - it depends. Let the result of dice rolled guide you in moments of doubt. The following are specific mechanics I whipped up and should be considered "official." Since rolling dice for the amount of healing is already random, I'd recommend the cleric rolls 1d6 (exploding) every time he tries to heal someone. However, if he rolls a "1" for a certain character, then he can't heal that person again until after the cleric has taken a long rest, about 6 - 8 hours... yet, an intrepid show of true faith from the character who got 1'ed will also refresh the cleric's attempt to heal him.

I've been playing RPGs since 1981 and while I have my core go-to systems, Crimson Dragon Slayer has made it's way to the top of my list. I cannot recommend this game highly enough. I liked it so much that I bought the core game as well (the writting style of that game is funny as hell...you'll love it!)

I hope this helps!

Jack



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Crimson Dragon Slayer 1.11
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No Escape from New York
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 05/10/2017 04:50:56

An Endzeitgeist.com review

This module/supplement from the Crimson Dragon Slayer-game clocks in at 24 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page inside of front cover, 2 pages of editorial, 1 page Kort'thalis glyph, 1 page inside of back cover, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 17 pages of content, so let's take a look!

We begin with a page of advice on how to structure a CDS game and/or how to run this. The pdf does include conversion notes for traditional ACs and attack bonuses, making this more hackable than it would otherwise be. The pdf does include 3 tables that let you generate a dark secret for an ally, 12 prior events and a means to include a variety of nicknames to the character.

The scenario does begin on the standard CDS-homeworld Thule, with the PCs finding a hunk of scrap and a laser-toting skydrone - and a portal that brings the PCs to New York city - not any New York, mind you, but to a place that amounts to a retro-apocalypse, 80s style - a post-bomb, prior clean-up version reminiscent of Snake Plisskin's adventures, but with a healthy infusion of the weird. So yes, if you belong to the folks who enjoyed A-, B- and C-movies of that genre, you'll be in for a nostalgia-marathon. Similarly, if pop-culture references and the like annoy you, then, surprise, this may not be for you.

Now, this New York is dangerous - and it is perpetually shrouded in neon-based twilight, courtesy of the cataclysm and yes, you may be subject to neon light allergy if you're unlucky. 6 sample gangs. The themes and tropes are all represented: A robotic cabbie, a femme fatale (dubbed Hard Candy...which reminds me of a rather grisly torture-porn movie) and subterranean travel with 6 sample events, all included. Reptile aliens (out-of-towners), sub-human cannibals and a d8-table of sample prostitutes help generate the grimy, desolate feel of the post-apocalyptic metropolis. Bat-men riding giant bats and Steak-Sauce Sinatra, the big boss of the town, also come with full stats. or become the hired killers of the vampire prince of the city.

A little chart for randomly-generated opinions of dudes on the street can be found and the PCs may eat hot-dogs at Old Snake's, meet Blade-reference vampires in trenchcoats, receive an invitation from slasher-mimes, witness demon-zombies erupting from one of the worst movies of all time. Seedy bars and sudden eruptions of Lovecraftiana and yes, a crimson dragon, complement these sketches.

The pdf concludes with 3 new spells: Power Word: Anal Violation by Plague of Rats is just as puerile as you'd think it'd be. It's also very potent for second level and pretty opaque in how it's supposed to work - conversion to more rules-conscious OSR-games will be a mess here. Right from the Joker's arsenal, we have a homage on the one German song probably 80% of Americans know by hard - 99 Crimson Balloons generates the eponymous balloons, makes them float up and then erupt, dousing those below in demonic blood. Those doused take on demonic characteristics, gaining an additional attack and killing those nearby. The spell has a lot of issues: It does not specify whether the affected retain control over whom they attack; the spell specifies no range for the blood either. Reverse Curse lets you either offset a curse or add a minor curse to an object - cool!

Conclusion:

Editing and formatting are very good, I noticed no serious hiccups. Layout adheres to a relatively printer-friendly two-column b/w-standard and the pdf sports a lot really nice b/w-full-page artworks, all original! The pdf has no bookmarks, which constitutes a minor comfort-detriment.

Venger As'Nas Satanis' take on a retro-post-apocalyptic NYC is glorious if you're looking for a trip down nostalgia lane. This is a gleeful, unrepentant, somewhat sleazy stroll down memory lane that is amazing if you're inclined for the like. The references of classic tropes and twists on them are fun and based on a true appreciation of the source material, an honest, conscious appreciation of it. If you share it, this will be amazing for you. That being said, one might also criticize this pdf - not for its adhere to tropes and its twists on them, but for the presentation and lack of structure this pdf sports. I know next to nothing about this alternate New York City's power-structures, layout or the like - this very much represents more of a toolkit than an adventure, with hooks left and right, yes - but they remain just that. The individual components never really come together as a concise and holistic hole, never explain how this city's dystopia still, even remotely, works.

In short, to me, this worked for as long as I turned off my brain and didn't start questioning everything; as soon as I did, I felt like I had seen the man behind the curtain. In short, as much as the individual hooks are cool, as much as each aspect of this book is pretty neat, the totality does not really offer that much for me - this is an instance, where the whole is not greater than the sum of its parts, unlike in e.g. a similar scenario, Venger's Revelry in Torth. If the nostalgia and reference don't do it for you, you may find yourself feeling a similar way about this and be somewhat disappointed by the pdf. As a whole, this is a nice first step, a fun first look at a retro-post-apocalyptic campaign setting, but not more than that. If you're expecting a fully-fleshed out module or setting, this will not deliver.

How to rate this, then? Well, for me, personally, this didn't do much. As much as I love these retro-apocalypse movies and references, I lack the capacity for full-blown nostalgia and as such, the main draw of this pdf...is lost on me. For me, personally, this is a 3 star-file - decent, but frankly not that amazing. However, as a reviewer, I have to take into account that many of you will absolutely adore this pdf, courtesy of the nostalgia I don't really get - hence, my official final verdict will clock in at 3.5 stars...and since I have an in dubio pro reo policy, my final verdict will be rounded up.

Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
No Escape from New York
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Guarding Galaxy XXX
by Eric F. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/07/2017 09:24:21

Venger has been working hard to make the Alpha Blue his brand of sleazy mature(ie Adult) science fantasy and fiction rpg visible in the wilds of the rpg market. You've got numerous resources & source books, etc. including a set of free rules under the dubious title Alpha Blue Quickie. I've used Alpha Blue numerous times to help fill in the gap in science fiction or fantasy campaign or when I needed a location for a 70's style science fiction adventure or even a rest stop. Yeah its good & original for just that sort of thing as well as fully functional system. Now Venger Satanis is a guy to ride the trends & with Guardians of the Galaxy Volume II riding high on the coat tails of the first Marvel block Venger would be putting out his own version for Alpha Blue. Except its not!?! Nope its a free adventure for Alpha Blue that takes some elements from a Guardians style school of sci fi comedy but puts a whole different spin on it. "You wake up out of cyro sleep to find your party up to its ears in trouble and adventure;"The soldier tells the leading man type that the galaxy is in grave danger - Thargons have pissed off the Romulyns who had a truce with the foul Myrmidons who never really saw the point in befriending the Zandarians and had just recently pinky-swore to uphold the freedom of the Azhanti Cresh. In a nutshell, this small corner of the universe is about to blink out of existence unless someone takes out the team who's supposed to defend it - the guardians of the galaxy! Rory blinks a few times at the impatient sergeant waiting for an answer to the question - will you help us

  • and proceeds to lay back down in the cryo-pod. The sleep shield slowly lowers over his body and back he goes to snooze town. At that point, sergeant Kaufman realizes the PCs are also awake and that they've been at least sort of listening to his spiel. "Well, what about you ..... want to come with me and save the galaxy or go back to bed?" If the PCs need any more convincing, the sergeant informs them they've racked up quite a debt in back taxes and freezer fees since entering hibernation. 1,843 credits… each, and that's in addition to what the PCs owed before entering their cryo-pods (1d6 x 1,000 credits in the red). Saving everyone's bacon would go a long way towards erasing those debts. Before leaving the cryogenic facilities, there's a ringing sound. The ringing is coming from inside one of the opened pods. One of the PCs is getting a phone call. Lifting the red phone from the receiver is enough to answer the call. Yes that's right the Guardians of the Alpha Blue universe weren't available so your going to have to do! Things go sideways for the PC's from there. The ride is weird and quite wild, all of this in only about ten pages. Venger's writing is up to its usual standards and the adventure plot moves along for a free adventure its well done and easy to incorporate into your favorite science fantasy system. Make no mistake this is a Venger Satanis production so the adult and mature themes are front & center in that Eighty One 'Ice Pirates' sort of way! But its very well done for what it does and what it does is serve as a beginning grab by the scrotum introduction to the Alpha Blues system. Its not pretending to be another gaming system or parodying or copying Marvel, this straight to the vein Alpha Blue. Its quick, its dirty, funny, and a straight up beginning adventure. Its not dancing around its adventure plot or anything. It takes the players straight into the sleazy weirdness that is the Alpha Blue rpg system. So in that it succeeds in spades. Guarding Galaxy XXX could be & should be used with other gaming systems especially West End's Star Wars or even gasp Traveler or one of its retroclones. Why because they're several adventure hooks that are scattered throughout the adventure that can really bring home the sleazy of 'Guarding Galaxy XXX' vibe. So for a free introductory adventure you could do worse then grab a copy of 'Guarding Galaxy XXX' some friends with a warped sense of humor and bring the sleazy mature party of Alpha Blue's seedy galaxy to them! Adults only Eric F. Swords & Stitchery Blog Want to see more original content for this & other OSR or O5R products? Subscribe to http://swordsandstitchery.blogspot.com/


Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Guarding Galaxy XXX
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Universal Exploits
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 04/17/2017 06:50:26

An Endzeitgest.com review

This massive supplement clocks in at 110 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page blank inside of front cover, 2 pages of editorial, 2 pages of ToC, 1 page for notes, 1 page Kort'thalis glyph, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 101 pages of content, so let's take a look!

All right, first things first: This is a book for the Alpha Blue RPG - that means it's deliberately written as an homage to 70s' and 80s' scifi-porn spoofs. The eponymous Alpha Blue would be a space-station know for its decadence, sex and drugs. It is also that book that contains the base rules for the Alpha Blue system, a variant of Venger As'Nas Satanis' rules-lite VSd6-engine. If you are offended by drawn breasts, pornographic imagery or the like, you may want to skip this. That being said, Universal Exploits is slightly less explicit in its artworks than the first expansion for Alpha Blue, Girls Gone Rogue. Personally, I think it's pretty tame and that you can see more explicit material on youtube and in your average music video, but then again, I come from a European cultural background, so I do not profess to get the whole nakedness anxiety angle. Reader discretion is advised - if you need further guidance, feel free to read my reviews for the previous two books.

All right, that out of the way, I mentioned that I think Alpha Blue works best as a change of pace, as a beer-and-pretzels-style one-shot/mini-campaign. There's a reason for that and Girls Gone Rogue made that evident: The campaign setting aspect was very much one locale; we did not get the big picture, the overall context, which made Girld Gone Rogue feel a bit more haphazard and slightly like it was floating in space. Well, Universal Exploits would be the book that provides the context, that shows us the big picture. It is, in short the world- (or rather: Galaxy) book.

After a brief introductory story, we dive right in - namely into a variant expansion for ship to ship combat's table, which notoriously could prove extremely lethal...and not fun in any prolonged campaign. This would also be an indicator of the things to come - we begin with Venger's signature wealth of tables upon tables...and variant rules, like carrying over excess damage to other targets. There also would be a mechanic to get advantage on attributes...but those with two strong suits also suffer disadvantage on one, so choose wisely! Simple unarmed strike rules can also be found here, as can rules for domain management and clones - and yes, the latter touches upon the chance of psychotic clones, how to condition them, etc. - rules and flavor are entwined here and a massive table allows you to determine previous romantic/sexual relationships with given NPCs.

As you've noticed, there is some setting information in these flavor aspects; which brings me to a slight criticism: The rules-relevant unarmed strike, etc.-rules are mixed in between e.g. tables to roll xenophobia, hilarious and flavorful alien languages, where one's planet is in the context of the universe, travel time, cryosleep, rules for the GM to randomly determine a location for PCs or NPCs, tables to handle cockblocking, passenger-and agent-generators and the like. In short: I wish we got the rules first, the flavor later - the structure here can be a bit confusing if you need to look something up. Granted, with the system's simplicity, that won't happen often, but yeah.

Rules for career benefits, telepathy and drugs (including optional withdrawal) are generally concise - telepaths wear the signature gloves we know from many a science-fiction and generally will have either a faction allegiance...or the big guys will start looking for them. The multicultural cesspool Revan 111 features a massive table of rumors and secrets of 100 entries that can easily be used in other locations and alien cultural bias is similarly covered. 100 entries for the after-party range from the weird to the raunchy. Let me quote the book: "A corndog is being used as a dildo on an Orion slave girl in full view of the party's attendees. The one holding the corndog looks like a tall hairy beast with pointy ears and a small abdominal creature growing out of him. The walking shag-carpet is wearing an orange leisure suit."

That entry is basically the tone in a nutshell. 100 religious practices for the often problematic space gods, 100 lesser (i.e. not sex) desires, 100 aspects of an alien world - there are a ton of details to be found within these pages.

After this massive section, we move on to some advice regarding the running of adventures and how to make them yourself before we take a look at one of the central antagonists of the setting: The Federation. Corrupt, bloated and mired in bureaucracy, it enriches the rich and ruthlessly exploits the masses...for spacers are belonging to the very much dwindled middle class that is on the verge of extinction; they are basically the wild-card in the class struggle. Universal Exploits, the eponymous organization, would be basically an organization that hands spacers assignments - think of it as somewhat like Cowboy Bebop's headhunter news, only that it doesn't broadcast assignments widely and instead provides them to spacers. There are some pros and cons for joining UX, but if you want steady employment, they are the place to go in the final frontier. Thus, we begin the module-section of this book with a massive read-aloud box and the PCs signing up.

And here begins the adventure component of the book. Potential players should jump to the conclusion - SPOILERS abound!

...

..

.

All right, only Space DMs around? Great! So, the first thing you need to know is that you won't get an encounter-by-encounter write-up, no read-aloud texts or the like - the adventure presented is pretty much a skeletal structure, that the SDM has to flesh out. If you want go-play modules, you won't find them here. If, however, you're looking for interesting story-lines to flesh out, then this book delivers. It should be noted that the structure is a bit strange - e.g. the "Rebels without a Cause"-sequence has the same header as an adventure and they flow into one another. So, what are the storylines about? The first module centers around shipments of the Purple Prizm, a cult drink that acts as aphrodisiac and has religious significance for some alien cultures. Shipments have been recently intercepted and the trail leads towards the Vertuda triangle, where the PCs can meet Aleister Franken; meet a reptilian Zedi and battle mad metal militia - yep, stats included. But the PCs will sooner or later catch up with sunbelt distribution and there find a hostile starship and the true masterminds behind the brewing conflict between the species reliant on Purple Prizm.

The second adventure, "Origins of the Mauve Council", also features Purple Prizm - the Kyntari generate a distilled, more potent version...which can make the Mauve Council change the very rules of the universe. The Kyntari have determined that New Earth needs to be wiped, but the PCs should save the one worthy being...but alas, the PCs will be caught and need to break free. "The PCs will have to use their imaginations in order to free themselves." That's the guidance you'll get. I'm not complaining, mind you - but I think it's important to know how the material is presented to avoid disappointment. On the plus-side: Have I mentioned fighting space ninjas?

The next of the scenarios deals with a planned supermerger of World Space Burgers and Star Cola: Taste the Next Generation! - both companies having addictive flavor profiles. The federation has its own nasty division, intergalactic comestibles has its own nasty research that is threatening to really wreck citizens and the companies - millions of tax-payer bucks make for a huge advantage. The PCs are tasked to wipe this secret division from the face of the universe - and to do so, they'll have to go through a vessel and find the base. Neither vessel or base are depicted or elaborated upon.

Pussy-Chasers: The legend of Oral deals with a strange sex-poor universe and the task of finding Malachite's gate - in the sex-rich universe beyond, there is the mythic blade called Kort'thalis, a ridiculously powerful weapon that may well change the very universe.

Beyond these adventure sketches, the pdf also contains set-pieces - these include a red-hologram district and Grabba the Butt's pleasure palace. Beyond these a quick chart for determining NPC possessions and land rush tables complement the content section of the pdf.

We also receive a nice two-page Alpha Blue character-sheet, once in color and once in b/w. in the tradition with the books in this series, we get amazing player-friendly blue-print-style maps of space ships, penned by Glynn Seal: Exploit class, milkshake class, feral class and huntsman class...and Grabba's massive pleasure palace also gets an amazing, detailed map, ending the book on a high note.

Conclusion:

Editing and formatting are very good, I noticed no grievous glitches in either criteria. The rules-language is much more precise than in Girls Gone Rogue. Kudos! Layout adheres to the cool and distinct style in 2-column b/w we know from the Alpha Blue books. The b/w-artworks are diverse and well-made, covering various distinct styles, ranging from massive 1-page b/w-spoofs on scifi material or three-breasted, tentacle-armed strippers. The electronic version comes fully bookmarked with nested bookmarks. The electronic version comes with a massive 600 dpi high-res jpeg for the Grabba pleasure palace, milkshake and exploit ship, but strange, not the other two - which is a bit odd to me. Two of the artworks inside have color highlights and the maps similarly have a gorgeous, used look in color, though the softcover print version is b/w. It should be noted that the pdf clocks in at a massive 100 MBs, so if you're using electronic devices with a very limited HD, that's something to bear in mind.

Venger As'Nas Satanis Universal Exploits is the book for Alpha Blue that makes it work as more than just a brief sojourn. Now, the weakest part of the book would be the adventure sketches - while stronger than in GGR, they still could all use more details and require some serious improvisation and work by the SDM to run. Don't get me wrong: Idea-wise, they all are winners, brimming with imagination. At the same time, I wished that the book had taken the time to completely structure at least one of the sketches presented. This structure-issue also hounds the lack of distinction between dressing and crunch.

That being said, Universal Exploits should still be considered to be a resounding success. Why? It contextualizes Alpha Blue in a concise and interesting meta-setting and actually manages to make that setting feel compelling and interesting. Though setting does not really properly describe it. You see, this book does not describe: "This is how the federation works, planets X, Y and Z can be found there, here are religions 1, 2 and 3." Instead, it establishes the basic concepts, the leitmotifs, the theme of this massive universe. Basically, you get all the tools to make this universe your own and emphasize/de-emphasize the components that intrigue you and your group.

In short, the book allows you to run campaigns in the universe; not one-shots, not one-week-end campaigns, but proper campaigns. While GGR is an optional "more of the same"-expansion, Universal Exploits should be considered to be a must-have expansion for Alpha Blue. From the better ship combat tables to the added details, this makes the system and setting just work better in every conceivable way.

Now, this does not change that this is a winking parody of space, a celebration of 70s/80s scifi-porn spoofs. It's still somewhat puerile, it's highly referential in its humor and it's not a system that will make you play highly tactical, strategic space battles. It's a beer-and-pretzels rules-lite game and Universal Exploits does not change that.

However, it does allow those groups that WANT to play a longer campaign with the system, that love the tone, play longer, more involved stories. This book generates the tools for the SDM to make the universe make sense.

How to rate this, then? Well, if you're not interested by Alpha Blue, then this book will not change that. If you liked Alpha Blue and wanted to see the bigger picture, if you wanted the toolkit for the overall picture, the campaign setting toolkit, if you will, then this is the must-have expansion. Design-wise, it is more precise than GGR, but still inherits some minor weaknesses in the structure of the presentation of the material. My final verdict will hence clock in at 4.5 stars, rounded up due to in dubio pro reo.

Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Universal Exploits
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Alpha Blue Quickie
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/06/2017 10:58:54

This cartoony character sheet is just perfect. The sheet is entirely hand draw and the illustrations are sexy in a fun in light hearted healthy way. I think this character sheet communicate super well the spirit of the game. I wish that the artist had illustrated the whole Alpha Blue book... ;)



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Alpha Blue Quickie
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Alpha Blue Quickie
by Shane W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/05/2017 16:43:29

This is a great addition to Alpha Blue and my game. Very cool! It gets me excited to play the game.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Alpha Blue Quickie
by Dak U. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/05/2017 15:05:31

I'm going to be as constructive as possible, because I think non-constructive reviews are worthless, as are bad ratings with no explainations. It even says above the review submission page that reviews should be constructive and informative...

I thought that this would be a quick-starter for Alpha Blue, but it's actually only a couple character sheets and a couple blueprints of space ships. It says what's in the package in the description, but the use of Quickie implied, to me, quick start rules. I would have called the package an Alpha Blue Character Sheet and Space Ship Sampler.

The character sheets are cool, done in an Old-School (OSR even) style with illustrations, and hand-drawn boxes and such. I know that lots of people like the look, though I prefer a more cleaner look myself. They're still well done.

The ships are really nice, and carry the weight of the whole package. They're published in tabloid sized pages, that are really suitable to be posters. Super cool. And system neutral.

I would have prefered them to be packaged in a single PDF, and in PDF in general. Instead they're individual image files, which can cause havok when trying to print. In order to print them easily, they'd have to be converted to PDF, otherwise your printer will treat them like an image, and do wierd stuff to it.

Overall, for what they are, it's high quality and gives you a good idea of what to expect from the full game.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Play Your Character Like A Fucking Boss
by Eric T H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/04/2017 02:52:55

Based upon the content of How_to_Game_Master_like_a_Fucking_Boss, this has a lot of information for the potential player. I just don't think the current pricing reflects the page count when compared to How_to_Game_Master_like_a_Fucking_Boss. As reviewed previously, there are four pages with art (three and a half actually), so the content page count is quite low for the price. This is truly my only gripe and why I gave it a three. I suppose I was expecting more. Play on.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Play Your Character Like A Fucking Boss
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Play Your Character Like A Fucking Boss
by Eric F. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/27/2017 21:00:24

Play Your Character like a Fucking Boss is the latest title from Venger Satanis and is his book end to his other work How To Game Master like a Fucking Boss. Clocking in at about fifteen pages this book is really geared towards OSR style players, well mostly. What this book is actually is a primer or manifesto for Venger's wit and wisdom when it comes to his style of gaming for the player. So what your getting is a primer for the player's side of the screen. The cover is pretty awesome with a Venger style wizard taming his three headed dragon and yeah the cover is boss. The advice inside is as well for players up to a point, the break down here is the finer points of this book is the fact that at certain levels its not really a primer for players. But a set of guidelines for smoother play & more cooperation between dungeon masters & the players. It has more between its pages then a simple review of it can kinda of encompass. There are some ideas for PC guidelines, quick idea backgrounds, how to approach both both play at the table, and how to deal with the dungeon master at your table. All of this is done with Venger's usual unique take. It kinda boils down like this. Without the players you don't have a game & its really not about being a complete jerk. Talking & having complete communication across the table is key here. Which basically makes this book something a look into a set of opinions, PC guidelines, & some solid advice. This isn't so much a book of incredibly awesome ideas but simple on the ground common sense. That right there makes this book far more valuable to me as a player. Do I agree with everything in this book, umm no but then I'm not meant to and neither are you as a player. Play Your Character Like A Fucking Boss is a box of chocolates in this regard. Pick and choose the pieces of advise that are in there for you.

The part about the OSR I agree with mostly but then again I don't; "Players, you have a lot more power than you realize.Banding together with common goals is the equivalent of forming a union. If I was part of this player union, my first order of business would be to find an easy, fun, rules-lite system that the majority will enjoy. I'm sure you can think of several off the top of your head, but indulge my blatant pimping… Crimson Dragon Slayer, The Outer Presence, and Alpha Blue are prime examples of simplistic yet awesome roleplaying games. On the flip-side, strong unions - when thoroughly corrupted by power - deserve to be broken. By the way, I feel the same way about strong, corrupt corporations. That's all part of the fascinating pushpull dynamic between the Game Master and players. Neither side has absolute power, and thank the gods for that, as the game would lose its fun. The second old school element I dislike is that player characters were occasionally… what's the opposite of putting something on a pedestal? Don't get me wrong, I'm all for initiation - the risk of a quick, unceremonious death comes with the old school territory. However, when you beat the odds, make the right decisions, and lady luck smiles upon your character, succeeding despite all the nasty shit the GM throws at you… I expect a fucking parade!" Which I mostly agree with but many OSR games find their own level and quite quickly. This is one of the reasons why its been easier to get players to play Dungeons and Dragons rather then Alpha Blue. This product is part manifesto and part advise primer by someone whose been in the hobby a long while. The artwork is very well done and the layout is top notch. The advise is right on target & for what it does 'Play Your Character Like A Fucking Boss' By Venger Satanis gets five out of five.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Play Your Character Like A Fucking Boss
by K. S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/27/2017 15:18:45

Another great fucking resource by Venger. This time, with direct advertising to sell hardcore awesomeness straight to the player.

This is a brief guide, only 15 pages in length, with 4 1/2 pages of truly gorgeous artwork that you won't find in the usual Politically Correct publications we get today. Checking the credits, some of the same artists reappear from prior publications (such as HTGMLaFB, AB, GGR, etc) which have similarly been great. Both a color version of the PDF as well as a B&W printer friendly is released. In the color version, the artwork extends to provide some pleasing color effects on the text pages which creates a high shelf professional appearance.

Of the remaining pages, you are immediately dropped into a densely packed and marvelously well written educational experience for players. Full of instant take home points, yet amazingly interwoven with interesting supporting facts and tidbits to support each individual section that make the entire document a fun read. Included, are enticing titles like "Mastering the Puppet Master", "What Kind of Man are You?", and "The Coolest Bitch in Town". Look no further than the "7 Ways to Awesome" if you only have a minute to absorb the core fundamentals. There are the common sense (which somehow isn't always 'common'?) topics of "Be Appreciative" and "Be Courteous" that similarly are presented in the most directly important manner without losing an ounce of necessity. Lastly, I really liked the last section which is a pithy two paragraphs with some advice for the Dungeon Masters (sorry, I prefer DM to GM ;).

You should pick up this concise manifesto. It is well worth the low cost of entry for a ticket into the mind of a master.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Slaves of Tsathoggua
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 03/21/2017 05:47:51

An Endzeitgeist.com review

This adventure for Crimson Dragon Slayer (the new, d6-based version) clocks in at 16 pages, 1 page front cover, 1/2 a page editorial, leaving us with 14 1/2 pages of content, so let's take a look!

So, we begin this pdf with a d20-chart that lets you determine how much of a peasant your character is: While some of these have minor in-game effects (like being a bad gambler), they also include living in a cardboard box, having dirt on even the dirt on you, etc. In short - this can make for a fun negative-bragging at the table: "Dude, my characters is so peasant, he only has rolls 3 teeth remaining!"

The PCs thus approach the little village of Needham, witnessing a strange funeral procession - the priest seems to have died and is now carted towards a cave...after all, anyone who has entered it will thereafter be brought back there for an eternal vigil. The 8 rumors similarly seem to speak of nasty things hidden there...but the road's been long, the weather foreboding, so the adventurers will probably head towards the tavern...and here, a man is goaded into entering the cave...a fool named Atsop. Witnessing the sod enter and exit will net a nasty scene, as he exits, slime eating his body, slowly and painfully....and indeed a suicide hidden in the village's vicinity similarly enhances the foreboding atmosphere.

...and this is about as far as I can go without going into serious SPOILERS. Potential players should jump to the conclusion.

...

..

.

All right, still here? Great! So, the main meat of the module represents a small dungeon crawl - the cavern complex is basically a ring of caverns around a strange machine, the scoop, which scoops up beings and deposits them inside the cave - as such, the numerous caverns to the sides of this central hub contain a variety of truly diverse encounters. The GM can resort btw. to a small d4-table to determine the desires of the respective creatures encountered. The planar instability also extends to the caverns - 12 entries of a table can allow the GM to make a cave Lovecraftian, icy, watery...etc. Similarly, a d30-table allows you to determine the weird insides of things the PCs may kill, slice open or dig into...ranging from endless bacon to small dolls with mysterious masks...so yeah, this is where the slightly gonzo weird comes in....but it retains a sinister streak. In short: It is a nice compromise between the gonzo Heavy Metal fantasy of the original Crimson Dragon Slayer and the darker aspects championed by the recent quick-play d6-based version in tone.

So that pertains the general dressing and environments - but what about the specific? Well, there would be Simon, a friendly tentacled diplomat from another dimension; there are silurians and zygothians, robots and plant monsters, faceless purple-skinned humanoids...there is a man with delusions of invulnerability, a horrible oracle who can employ emotional illusions and implant them within beings...but ultimately, in one of those side-caverns, the PCs will find a way deeper into the complex, past deadly insects and worse...oh, and if your PCs are idling, they'll meet radical anthropomorphized fruit sooner or later. And yep, these guys have a mean streak. Anyways, the PCs will probably sooner or later meet The Thing. - a horrid and very powerful entity...and past it, there looms a nugget of cosmic truth, of genocides in the past and the looming return of dread Tsathoggua...

But even if the PCs manage to survive this meat-grinder of a module (the progressive bosses have A LOT of HP), there is a handy 20-entry-table to roll regarding PTSD for surviving this insane experience. These range from drawbacks to benefits to primarily roleplaying relevant tricks.

Conclusion:

Editing and formatting are very good, I noticed no significant hiccups. Layout adheres to a nice full-color two-column standard and the pdf actually comes with a second, printer-friendly version - kudos! The pdf comes fully bookmarked for your convenience with extensive bookmarks and the b/w-artworks featured herein are amazing original pieces. The cartography by Glynn Seal is excellent as well, though I certainly wished we got a key-less version to cut up and hand to the PCs as they go.

After the revision of Crimson Dragon Slayer hit digital shelves, I wasn't too blown away; the sample module is pretty much standard dark fantasy minus all the gonzo weirdness that made me like the original Crimson Dragon Slayer. This module would then be a synthesis of both approaches: This is very much dark and brooding fantasy and a grinder of a module, yes - but at the same time, it features quite a lot of thoroughly surreal and interesting components. The surreal aspects are more grim than before, sure - but at the same time, the module manages to sell them as both scary-weird and atmospheric, which is a feat as far as I'm concerned. In short: This is significantly better than the intro-module of for CDS's revision and feels once again like it has its very own identity. Now the module may not be a world-shaking scenario, but for the fair price point, it certainly delivers an enjoyable session of gaming. So yeah, I don't have significant complaints against this module by Venger As'Nas Satanis...and thus, my final verdict will clock in at 5 stars - If you want to play the new Crimson Dragon Slayer version, get this module to accompany it.

Endeitgeist out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Slaves of Tsathoggua
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Descent into the Candy Crypts
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 03/10/2017 04:00:18

An Endzeitgeist.com review

This module for Crimson Dragon Slayer clocks in at 14 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page inside of front cover, 2 pages of editorial,1 page back cover/Kort'thalis glyph, leaving us with 9 pages of content, so let's take a look!

The Candy Realms lie west of Valeece and are inhabited by candy people (which are also known as candles). Sounds nice, right? Well, candy people are colossal a-holes. They are totally into slavery, considering themselves to be a delightfully sweet master-race. Fruit people, also known as Fruities, have been enslaved for a while by this vile nation and only recently threw off the yoke of the candy people oppression. Turns out they consider the candy folk to be too sweet...and aren't really that much better. The big question is why the players of a Crimson Dragon Slayer game should care about that. Well, this question is answered by a d8-table.

This table includes having lost a leg to candy land-mines, having been cheated at cards by Cando Carysian, being the offspring of a dentist...you get the idea. Basically, you hate candy. Oh, and guess what. You can play the long-suppressed fruities!

There would be Strawberry Folk, who get -2 Strength and Willpower and 4 racial hit points, but have a mean streak: When you make a strawberry see red, you're doomed: 1/day, they may gain advantage on attacks for level rounds. On a 2, they attack the nearest target; on a 1 they hit themselves while thus afflicted. To nitpick: Specifying that this pertains to the attack roll would have been helpful - it's evident, but first generated some minor confusion.

Banana-men look like bananas with arms and legs and eyes...the eyes of a serial killer. They have no mouths. They get -2 to Dexterity and Charisma and have 6 racial hit points. 1/day, they can start a death stare that forces the GM to select another target when trying to attack them.

Thirdly, grapes. Grapes get -2 Strength and Constitution and 8 racial hit points. They look like anthropomorphized grapes...with a tentacle that they can 1/day you to seduce a target, making it inclined to non-violent conflict resolutions. Yeah...don't try to picture it. Grapes are purple. Tentacles, purple...leitmotif for Kort'thalis. The rules here could be slightly more precise, but as a whole, you can grasp their intent.

The module comes with conversion notes to other old-school RPGs and has a d12 "Let's make this interesting"-table for the GM: From granting laser guns to every foe, finding the necromonicon, to boys that can use wishes - basically, this is the big chaos-infusion if, at one point the GM gets bored and things are running too smoothly.

And that is as far as I can go without going into SPOILERS. Potential players should jump to the conclusion.

...

..

.

All right, still around? Well, the module takes place in the Too Sweet Asylum's ruins - the place seems to have rotted from within, like a bad tooth...and below it lie the eponymous candy crypts. Within the ruins of the asylum, one can encounter ring pop wraiths, a convenient dentist (for those that abuse cotton candy healing) and fruities planning the infiltration of the compound - for below, in the candy crypts, there are fruitie prisoners to be freed. And yes, a kiwi-fruitie speaks with a New Zealand accent. Obviously. Treacherous peaches and a genius-level insane pina-colada marshmallow can also be found among the prisoners and the PCs will stumble over the dread result of candy genetic engineering...and potentially blow up if they fail to stabilize a sabotaged generator about to bust. Guards are btw., obviously, donuts and can jam you into their hole, squeezing hard for serious damage. This sentence sounds somehow so damn wrong...

Anyways, a small chocolate river contains a deadly fudge golem must be passed and there would, obviously, be the evil lolipop king with his butterscotch wizard, who has a CANDYFICATION MACHINE! Beyond this horrible threat, the gumdrop ichor, the dread peanut brittle vampire - there a copious amounts of bonkers foes. And yes, the module for a system that quotes Heavy Metal F.A.K.K. actually quotes South Park's Cat-Piss-episode quoting Heavy Metal F.A.K.K....which, I'm pretty sure is one step short of generating a referential black hole... Oh, and I should also mention the cherry light district in the crypts. 5 rooms are devoted to...yeah, there's a sugarplum faerie stripping on a pole. There is a rap battle in process. And a jello massage parlor. I'll just add my voice to the comment of the module: "You don't want to know what goes on there."

The pdf also has 4 magic items - a sword of vengeance, a lightning wand, kryptonite candy...and the amethyst ring of WTF, which ties in with the Purple Islands of Putrescence.

Conclusion:

Editing and formatting are very good, I noticed no serious glitches. Layout adheres to a 2-column standard and is pretty elegant. The pdf's b/w-artwork is nice, original and bonkers. The map of the complex by Glynn Seal is absolutely excellent - no player-friendly, key-less version is included, though. The pdf has no bookmarks, which constitutes a comfort-detriment.

Venger As'Nas Satanis excursion into the candy crypts left me somewhat baffled. In all my years, I have never thought I'd be typing, seriously, a review of a module wherein you play anthropomorphized fruit, duking it out with genocidal candy folk. This feels, very much, like a LSD-hallucination of a module in the sheer outré nature of the proceedings. "What happened at the gaming session today?" "Well, I got stuck in a donut and squeezed to death."

How do you rate this? Well, it's pretty much a straight dungeon-crawl regarding its structure. I can also say that this is by far the best module wherein you defeat evil anthropomorphized candy people I have read to this date. This is EXTREMELY WEIRD AND GONZO. And know what? I like it. If you strip away the weird, the module is nothing groundbreaking, but oh boy did I laugh my behind off! The rules-language aspects could be slightly more precise here and there, but that does not change that this module is more entertaining than it has, structure-wise, any right to be. Considering the pretty fair price-point, I feel justified in rating this 4.5 stars. And while I, as a person, had more fun with this than with comparable, brief dungeons and believe that wonky, bat-shit crazy stuff should be supported, the module's structure etc. is nothing mind-boggling beyond the premise. Hence, the reviewer in me demands that I round down for my official verdict.

Need something mega-gonzo? Look no further.

Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Descent into the Candy Crypts
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