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Lightspeed for Mongoose Traveller, Ranger Threat Assessment Guide
Publisher: Avalon Game Company
by Jim C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/01/2011 05:08:30
Some credit is due this publisher that their production values, while still rough, show improvement. The Saure' (their punctuation, when they bother) and Hunters are pretty much exactly what you might think they are. Although advertised for the Traveller SRD, the painfully long Ranger section and the Robot Nexus contain no recognisable Traveller rules. The other creatures each rate part of a line for stats. It's all a bit of an insult.

Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Lightspeed for Mongoose Traveller, Ranger Threat Assessment Guide
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Cascade Failure
Publisher: Chubby Funster
by Jim C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/01/2011 03:57:46
An exceedingly nice-looking preview and thought-provoking development of the consequences of technological collapse. I suspect some of the rules might prove a little rubbery in play for my over-literal style.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Cascade Failure
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Return to Tarlkin's Landing (Scenes of Adventure #2)
Publisher: QuikLink Interactive, Inc.
by Jim C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/12/2011 04:49:54
Judges Guild have created a really nice, immersive description of a small off-world settlement with interesting human and nonhuman characters with their local intrigues that might draw in a stranger in town. QLI's work in transcription has left a few typos in the introductory pages.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Return to Tarlkin's Landing (Scenes of Adventure #2)
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Transit to Perdition: Near Death Experience #2 for Rapture: The End of Days
Publisher: StoryWeaver
by Jim C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/10/2011 05:35:52
I can forgive a lot for the imagination that goes into the gruesome denouement of this tale. I personally don't much like the particular technology that underpins the story and seems to justify any sort of magical occurrence in recent SF. Its background seems a little too contrived. But if the players will never know about it and the GM can justify it as a necessary leap of logic to make the science-horror work, maybe it's nothing to worry about.

Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Transit to Perdition: Near Death Experience #2 for Rapture: The End of Days
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Publisher Reply:
Hi Jim C. Sorry it’s taken a while for me to reply to you; I wanted to have something to show – that is an update to the product based on reviews – before replying. Firstly, can I say; thank you, thank you, and thank you. The first thank you is for the feedback; any feedback in gratefully accepted. We can’t make things better if we don’t have other peoples’ takes on things. Secondly, thank you for not blurting out the secret core of the adventure. Others would probably have not been so considerate. And third, thank you for speaking your mind and giving me something to work with. While 5 star ‘it’s just awesome’ reviews are good for the ego, they are not that good for improving the product. I like reviews that tell me something that I can do to make things better. Your dislike of the underlying technology of the adventure is not surprising given the way Hollywood has abused it in the past. I do agree that they use it as a cure-all in their storylines - I hope you can see that I only use it as a basis for far more complex and scary shenanigans. The recent remake of a classic 50’s sci-fi springs to mind, however, there it was alien produced. As there are no aliens in vanilla Rapture, everything that happens is due to humankind up until the Rapture itself. Thus, in the secret history, it is mankind’s doing. I can’t do much about your feeling that the secret history section is contrived – it’s been accepted as cannon now by the Universe’s author, and is already referenced to in multiple new works that are in production. But having said that, I lead on to one of the new additions to the product that I hope you, Jim, will access and read, as it was specifically written to address your (and anyone else’s) issues with the ‘underlying technology.’ It’s the Technology Sate of Play document, and it outlines where that tech is in real life, up to the present day, as well as where we see it progressing and fitting into the timeline of Rapture: The End of Days. Dislike or no, this tech is fundamental to advances we’ve made in many facets of production and manufacturing in real life, and it is only going to increase. Given that this adventure occurs over 600 years in the future, I think that it’s quite possible that advancements to that point, even with the 200 years of ‘The Great Gap’ in there, is plenty of time for it to mature into what is presented. Well that’s our opinion, anyway. The other addition I made to the product, based on your comments, was to tie the secret history into the adventure officially. Now there is an audio clue and transcript that can be used by the GM (at the appropriate juncture) to tie it in. I hope that the players will want to read the full secret history after the game’s conclusion, so they can fully understand the effort we put in to not only making the Rapture Universe a rich playing field for your games, but an internally constant one as well. Thanks again for your comments, and I hope this update improves your consideration of our products. We aim for Gaming Excellence, and if you speak, we listen. Best Regards, Ray Duell StoryWeaver Games
Deadlands Reloaded: Devil's Night
Publisher: Pinnacle Entertainment
by Jim C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/31/2011 07:36:02
So it's free and it's seasonal. It offers some reasonably forgettable business leading up to (on the last page) the suggestion to buy Savage Worlds Horror Companion to get the stats for the final encounter. If you have that work, you may find this a useful adjunct.

Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Deadlands Reloaded: Devil's Night
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There and Back Again: The Construction of Nostalgia in Advanced Adventures
Publisher: Expeditious Retreat Press
by Jim C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/28/2011 04:29:45
Intriguing comparisons of visual theme and composition may be the most compelling reason to spend time with this project. Verbally, the author may have tried to address too broad a field, as he struggles at the same time either to treat each source with the depth it deserves or to cover all of the literature I might have expected to see. I wonder if he would have done better to choose a single interesting theoretical approach to 'nostalgia' and apply it with rigour.

Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
There and Back Again: The Construction of Nostalgia in Advanced Adventures
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Trail of Cthulhu: The Repairer of Reputations
Publisher: Pelgrane Press
by Jim C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/23/2011 03:01:41
With a subtle hand (as any adaptation of Chambers' work would require) and as much gore as the GM finds appropriate, it should play out well as a strangely mannered experience of half-understood menace.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Trail of Cthulhu: The Repairer of Reputations
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JG Traveller- Corsairs of the Turku Waste
Publisher: Game Designers' Workshop (GDW)
by Jim C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/23/2011 02:04:06
This is a pretty useful-looking description of a pirate home base, covering everything from the sector politics that allows them to operate, the raider herself, support vessels, crews, opponents on the side of law, to a number of brief scenarios that pit players against the corsairs.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
JG Traveller- Corsairs of the Turku Waste
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The Durandrium Find
Publisher: Guild Companion Publications
by Jim C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/09/2011 08:29:45
A logical and pressing economic-political background drives two brief, but compelling sequences, influenced particularly by quirks of the characters' personalities.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Durandrium Find
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Ancient Warriors: Sons of Sparta
Publisher: Necromancers of the Northwest
by Jim C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/03/2011 02:00:44
I have received a copy of this product as a free download and reviewed it at the publisher's suggestion.

I'd like to see a hoplite class done well, as I've mentioned in regard to another attempt. I'm curious how class features for the barbarian, cavalier, monk, rogue and sorcerer fit into the subject of the work. I won't comment on everything, but just pick up a few points.

The introduction seems a little overstated. The Spartans didn't fight for nor favour democracy, as they were a monarchy supported by an unfree majority (as the section immediately afterwards describes). The classical world raised many famous warriors, not least the Immortals on the opposing side at Thermopylae.

The Hoplite: It might seem appropriate to make this an alternate class to the fighter. Generally, I can see players of other classes being tempted to dip into this for a couple of levels to pick up some of the abilities that perhaps break a few too many assumptions of the game and could have been more limited or deferred to higher levels. I do think it's an advance on Blackdirge's already interesting treatment, earlier mentioned.

Traits: These will need a little work to fit into the Pathfinder framework, which (without presupposing a solution) the author could potentially have covered in only a sentence or two. A lot of them are interesting, though.

This brings together a lot of good information for the gamer who's not an expert in the field (in a similar sense to the various reprints of public-domain works on this site, perhaps) and I certainly wouldn't describe its game content as unplayable, with a little judgement.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Ancient Warriors: Sons of Sparta
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Wondrous Lands #01 - Nexelan Island Necropolis
Publisher: Legion Publishing
by Jim C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/02/2011 06:53:59
What seems at first another random tropical island with some pirate-y legends and funny-looking lizardfolk hides much, much more. It wasn't what I was expecting, but if a DM can find a place for it in a campaign, it should be a memorable short story arc.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Wondrous Lands #01 - Nexelan Island Necropolis
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Jurassic Ancestry Free Adventure: A Day of Hope
Publisher: Joker's Playground
by Jim C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/01/2011 18:22:44
Some amusing setting elements and a well-balanced adventure design in a presentation that's perhaps more board-game fixated than it really needs to be.

Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Jurassic Ancestry Free Adventure: A Day of Hope
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Faith & Demons: The Rising Playtest Packet #2
Publisher: Mystical Throne Entertainment
by Jim C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/16/2011 23:42:32
I know nothing about any playtest agreement. However, if the publisher feels that I am under an obligation by downloading this, I've deleted the item unread. It sounds as if it will be interesting when complete.

Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Faith & Demons: The Rising Playtest Packet #2
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Raiders from the Frontier
Publisher: Guild Companion Publications
by Jim C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/16/2011 04:23:17
I saw a considerable Dominic Flandry influence in this regional sourcebook, which is not at all a bad thing.

Three of the four adventures deal with the barbarous Idorians and their scheming Imperial contacts, while the other could drop in to almost any setting. I found the adventure format a little difficult to follow, though a GM with sufficient time to prepare should be able to untangle it all right.

For anyone thinking of picking bits out of here for a different game, it's probably most compatible with Traveller or Space Opera with more thought required for other settings.

Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Raiders from the Frontier
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Noble Houses: House of Mehrcia
Publisher: Alea Publishing Group
by Jim C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/15/2011 05:50:26
Very interesting to demonstrate how distinctive a setting element, such as a titled house, can become, with rules support infusing the general feudal ideal with their elemental, wilderness and wolf affinities.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Noble Houses: House of Mehrcia
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