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Phase Four
Publisher: Random Wizard
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/08/2016 11:50:21

Minimalist version of the old Marvel Super Heroes RPG using D20 instead of D100. Lots of details are left to the GM and players, but this offers enough rules to actually be playable.


At the price, a home run!


But, for some reason I did have some problems printing the file. The last three pages kept hanging up in my print queue. Might just be me.


Anyway, this is a fast, easy, quick supers RPG. You have no reason not to buy it for a buck!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Phase Four
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The Final Girl
Publisher: Gas Mask Games
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/07/2016 11:45:39

After hearing so much about this game ion the Gauntlet Podcast I am very excited to finally be able to own it.


Final Girl is a story tellng game designed to emulate slasher flicks and similar horror stories. Narration rights and characters are shared, so traditional RPGers may find it a bit hippie-dippie, but if you let your hair down and buy into the premise if is a lot of fun.


This is a great game for casual gamers as well as the rules are very easy to handle.


This should be a must own game for almost everybody!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Final Girl
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The Squid, the Cabal, and the Old Man
Publisher: Lamentations of the Flame Princess
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 06/20/2016 11:08:33

What you get:
An unstable situation involving three prominent figures of varying wealth and power
3 house maps plus an observatory map
2 dungeons
1 ancient cult
A new spell
Several new monsters
Several new magic and/or treasure items


While written for a semi-historical England in 1684, the basic theme and adventure could easily fit into almost any time period and level of historical or fantastical detail.

However, the adventure contains only a small amount of actual plot or "here's what to do if the players do this..." advice, so I probably would not recommend this to GMs that like to have a lot of plot to work with. Also, there are several LotFP "gotcha, your PC is f*cked for touching a spoon" moments, but they are easily removed if you don't like that sort of thing.

The only thing I really wish would have been included is a basic large scale map of the region for those of us unfamiliar with English geography.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Squid, the Cabal, and the Old Man
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Wolf-packs and Winter Snow
Publisher: Dying Stylishly Games
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/16/2016 11:28:36

Wolf-packs and Winter Snow is a D&D OSR game, based mostly on the Lamentations of the Flame Princess rules set.


It is set in a fantasy version of pre-history, with primitive hunters and cavemen battles the environment, savage animals, and the occassional fantastical monster or sprirt.


The classes, equipment and magic system have all been rewritten with the setting in mind, and the magic system especially resonates with the pre-literate setting as magicians use cave paintings to store their magic knowledge.


My favorite part of the system is a procedural process to track the month-to-month success of the band that the PCs belong to, keeping track of food gathered, equipment maintained, births and deaths is a quick and easily trackable way.


My one complaint is about the physical layout of the game. While I tend to be more concerned about the writing of a game book than the appearance, this book frequently skipped any spaces between paragraphs giving some pages a slammed-together wall of text appearance that was sometimes hard to read.


Except for that, I think this game is easily worth $10 in pdf form, maybe more, and a p.o.d. copy would be of interest to me at $20 or less.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Wolf-packs and Winter Snow
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Dungeon Questing
Publisher: MHGames
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/03/2016 13:38:15

This game is an inexpensive, but solid option iin the Old School gaming field.


Right up front, let me say that the game could use another editorial pass. In the descriptions of Chrisma and Wisdom it says you get an XP bonus if your stat is 13+. At the beginning of the section, it explains that stas go from -2 to +2. So obviously, someone didn't finish cleaning up some of those old references. But I will also say that sort of thing is piddly-tosh and not what would frighten a bold adventurer.


As it stats in the product description, Dungeon Questing is pretty much BX D&D, based on a 2d6 system instead of using a d20. If that sounds like your kind of game, then Dungeon Questing is for you. The rules are complete - as complete as any BX style game - with monsters and treasure and spells and everything else you need.


Dungeon Questing does not use character classes - though their is an optional appendix to do so - but instead uses a skill system that lets you build your own character as you see fit. If you do not like skill systems, then you may have a problem here, though I think you could probaby simply the game another step and eliminate most of the skills with little problem.


At $2.50 for 162 pages, this is a fantastic bargain and a must have for anyone who wants to play Old School D&D, but wants to ditch the d20.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Dungeon Questing
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Publisher Reply:
Thank you for spotting the error, I\'ll get right to work on correcting it! And I would like to add that there is indeed a class system in the appendix for those who do not want the skill-based system. Dungeon Questing is based on Swords & Wizardry White Box and the classes in the appendix follows the same format as its parent game, with the difference that it\'s based on the 2d6 mechanic. Best regards, MHGames
The Fate Codex - Volume 3, Issue 1
Publisher: Magpie Games
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/29/2016 12:26:57

A solid and useful issue of the Fate Codex.


Family Favors by John Large setails how to use the bronze rule to represent organizations in your game, and how characters can interact with them, asking for favors and being tasked with returning favors as well.


Mythos Aspects by June Shores shows how to use campaign aspects to influence issues and character aspects in your game, keeping the focus tight and the action appropriate for the type of game you are playing.


La Reina Del Sol gives you a detailed NPC to use in a variety of games.


Amber Twilight by Jima Arunsone is this issues mini-campaign, a space opera-ish game with magic and faeries and stuff. Honestly, this did not work for me. I felt like someone was describing half of a young adult movie series that I wasn't familiar with and leaving most of the details out. I don't want to be harsh. I'm sure someone will love this and play the heck out of it, it just didn't gel with me.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Fate Codex - Volume 3, Issue 1
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Achtung Cthulhu - Elder Godlike
Publisher: Modiphius
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/23/2016 14:17:30

Elder Godlike is a good addition to your RPG library, and does a lot of things great, but I was hoping for a little something more...


The game does boast "A complete new rule system for superpowers in Call of Cthulhu." and this section is excellent. Just about any fan of BRP based games could use these rules to run Supers. They offer robust and varied options that should satisfy the character customizers without going into Champions hard-math territory. Savage Worlds players are also given a number of rules tweaks to flavor their super powers rules, though this is much sparser than the BRP rules.


Where I find the book lacking is "A history of Talents in the Secret War". There are indeed 6 pages of background material that blend the Talents history of Godlike into the Mythos history of Achtung Cthulhu, but this book really doesn't mix the two themes together. You are given rules for how superpowers and cthulhian entites interact, but they are never combined together into a whole. There are no Mythos related reason why superpowers exist, or superpowered reasons for Mythos things to exist. They are in the same game-bucket but they are not blended together well.


The scenario given is nicely detailed and apocalyptic, maybe too much so to launch a campaign but certainly capable of ending a campaign f the PCs goof up.


I would definitely recommend this to anyone playing Achtung Cthulhu as a source for new weird powers and such. I would recommend this to any BRP GM as a great superpowers rules kit, independent of the background material. I would hesitate to recommend this to a Savage Worlds GM that was not running Achtung Cthulhu (or a Weird War 2 type game). While the stats and NPCs could be used in other games, there is not quite enough material here for the cost in my opinion.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Achtung Cthulhu - Elder Godlike
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Guardians
Publisher: Night Owl Workshop
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/12/2016 15:17:06

Guardians is a superhero game built on the engine of original (White Box if you will) Dungeons and Dragons.


You create a character by rolling the standard 6 attributes, then choosing an Origin (Human, Mutant, Alien, etc) and a class (Brusier, Super Agent, etc). The combination of Origin and Class determines how many Powers, Gifts (things like being a detective, or being rich, or having a gadget), Limits (vulnerabilities, inhuman appearance) and Issues (recurring enemies, vulnerable loved ones) you start with, and how many you gain as you level up. Some Powers and Gifts may be taken multiple times, to get more pwerful versions.


The game rules cover combat, hazards, and all the usual stuff. Since this is an OD&D style game, these rules are pretty fast and loose, and lots of stuff is left for the GM and Players to decide while playing. If you are looking for Champions or Mutants & Masterminds level of fdetails, you will not find them here.


Finally, the book includes a brief history of a sample superhero campaign world and several pages of sample characters.


No major editorial errors jumped out at me, though I could have just read over them if they are there.The art is sparse and mostly pictures of costumed heroes in various action poses. I liked it good enough. Layout is utilitarioan and a bit retro looking, but it did its job just fine for me. It may sound like I'm fairly cool to this book, but honestly I think this is a game that is not to be valued as an example of the graphic arts but rather as an example of a great rules light game that delivers on everything it promised.


I look forward to getting this game to the table with my players and giving it a try out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Guardians
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Search & Destroy
Publisher: Stone Mountain Press
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/26/2016 14:21:54

In Summary: A good expansion to a good superhero RPG, expanding the types of games you can play. (Anyone remember Super Agent for Champions?)


A useful and interesting expansion for the SUPERS Revised RPG, giving a number of rules expansions that make the game more Action Hero than Super Hero.


The additions to the combat rules makes combat slightly more complicated (figuring out weapon damage took me a few tries to remember what gets added where and when), but the new Ammo rule is great and the chase rules are good enough to steal for other games (and I will!).


The new Organization rules are interesting for those GMs that like a bit of solo-gaming at the camapign level, letting big groups fight each other and create new problems for the PCs in a way that doesn't rely entirely on GM fiat. The organization write ups included in the book give some nice generic groups that can model a number of organized crime and law enforcement groups, as well as some fully fleshed out groups that can be dropped into - or inspire - a full campaign.


There are a few things that I feel would make this into a full 5 star product - a few fully worked out character examples, a few semi-developed camapaign ideas, and some more developed rules on how to use powers from the parent SUPERS Revised RPG in Search & Destroy. All things a decent GM can do on their own, but I feel they would really enhance this product that extra bit.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Search & Destroy
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Strange Stars Fate Rule Book
Publisher: Hydra Cooperative
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/26/2016 13:34:56

Together with the main Strange Stars book, this would be a solid 5 stars. Having to buy them seperately makes me rate this at 4 stars.


What you get is a summary version of the core Fate rules, as well as very well done, very detailed examples of the Strange Stars clades (races), political groups and organizations.


Howvever, seperated from the art and fiction of the main book, this book came off as somewhat dry and text book-y.


Still, solid 4 stars, great example of Fate space opera/transhuman sci fi. I look forward to seeing more Strange Stars.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Strange Stars Fate Rule Book
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FT 0 - Prince Charming, Reanimator (PWYW)
Publisher: Purple Duck Games
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/26/2016 12:36:01

After reading about how good this funnel adventure was I finally bought it, and found it to be as good as I was told. A solid adventure, good monsters, some great encounters that can be spun out into further adventures.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
FT 0 - Prince Charming, Reanimator (PWYW)
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Skyscrapers & Sorcery White Box Rules
Publisher: Sleeping Griffon Productions
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/20/2016 16:18:01

I really enjoyed this product, but felt it could have used just a bit more to really make it sparkle.


The game system is based on White Box Sword & Sorcery (i.e. old D&D), but the addition of a career system to flesh out the PC's background (instead of a skill system) is a really neat idea.


The game setting is post-small-apocalypse late 20th century Earth, with monsters and magic coming back in the hidden and secret places. Another really interesting idea.


Overall, I loved what was here, but felt that a little more could have made this a better product. For instance, I felt that a small (2-3 page) write up of adventure or campaign ideas could have really helped nail down the tone of the game. Similarly, I think a small section of new and unique magic items - mixing the campaign magic with the technology of the unique setting - could have helped provide a great deal of color. Admittedly, these are all things an experienced DM can think up themselves, but I always like to see the game's writer develop this kind of material.


Still, four stars and I really hope Mr Hunter and Sleeping Griffon Productions produce more material for this game.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Skyscrapers & Sorcery White Box Rules
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Hexcrawling: Wilderness Exploration and Random Encounters
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/20/2016 15:54:57

Well, I only paid $2 for this, and I feel that it is worth five stars for that price point.


The first section is a nice rules summary for navigating and getting lost, and even better than the rules were the commentary on when you should and should not push the exploratory parts of the game.


Similarly, the section on random encounters presents a nice system and again several very helpful comments on what you should and should not do with the system.


I think this file is probably well worth $3.00. More than that I would only give it 4 stars or so.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Hexcrawling: Wilderness Exploration and Random Encounters
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Stark Space
Publisher: Magic Pig Media
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/20/2016 15:49:56

This small but meaty supplement helps move White Star (or another OSR Sci Fi game of your liking) away from Star Wars and towards the kind of gritty sci fi seen in Aliens, Bladerunner and other films of their ilk.


It includes three new character classes and a skill system that lets those classes portray a number of different character types, and four races (well, humans and three human-centric variants). A nice selection of gear is included, with weapons, armor, drugs and survival/exploration gear featured. Cyberware also gets a nice write up.


While no detailed setting is included, there is a small precis of what the setting entails, and the rest of the book - especially the antagonists setting - include more details to flesh things out. Still, the GM will have to do the heavy lifting to fill things out.


Two minor observations.. Firstly, the book has a number of typographical and grammatical errors, not enough to make the book confusing but enough to be noticable. Secondly, the art work is a bit uneven in style, realistic in some places, comic bookish in others. Neither of these points bother me in the least, but they are there.


This product is easily worth twice the price.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Stark Space
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The Three Rocketeers • A World of Adventure for Fate Core
Publisher: Evil Hat Productions, LLC
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/19/2015 12:40:52

My only complaint is that I wish it were longer!


Three Rocketeers is a cinematic mash up of space opera and swashbuckling adventure, using an "even rules lighter" version of Fate!


This 40 page pdf gives you rules, including a "drill down" focus on fencing that enables you to differentiate all the different sword wielders in the game, an easy to read and expand upon background, several per-generated characters, and a complete adventure.


Admission 1: I am a patreon backer for Evil Hat, so I am the target audience for this
Admission 2: I am a HUGE Three Musketeers fan, so I really, really am the target audience for this.


I give this product 6 stars, 2 thumbs up, and my highest recommendation.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Three Rocketeers • A World of Adventure for Fate Core
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