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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition) $59.99 $19.99
Average Rating:4.1 / 5
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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition)
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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition)
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Simon S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/19/2017 15:45:40

No problem with the PDF on Android 7 or latest iOS. I use the built in PDF viewer in Dropbox without a problem. As much as I love the printed books, PDF is so much easier to search.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition)
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Thomas B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/18/2017 23:12:10

the file was corrupted. If I recive a refund I many consider raising my reivew



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[1 of 5 Stars!]
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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition)
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Ashlyn C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/12/2017 15:21:19

Completely worthless, won't open on mobile or tablet with either Adobe or Google pdf viewers. Won't ever be using drivethruRPG again.



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[1 of 5 Stars!]
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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition)
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Donald B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/10/2017 13:12:52

The rules were well organized and clearly written. I liked the examples and stories. I am very glad I have the PDF because it is over 500 pages. This is a complex rule system that can create a wide range of characters. I want more information about the Native American Nations and other political entities beyond the big 10 corporations. It would help me in developing character back stories. It would provide more motivation for developing ideas for campaigns.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition)
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by notKlaatu L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/02/2016 14:36:59

Shadowrun converted me from hating the cyberpunk genre to loving it, and loving especially Shadowrun for its originality and unique take on a technological wasteland combined with magick and fantasy. The 5th Edition is my first edition, so I have no history with the game to compare this to. Compared to other rulesets, I'll definitely say that this one is complex, but that's not necessarily a bad thing and, in fact, can be a really great thing if part of the reason you enjoy RPG is for stat management and rule parsing. I happen to enjoy that quite a lot, so the intricacy of the Sixth World and its rules is just a further excuse to keep exploring it.

My only complaint: I would love for this rulebook to be released as an epub. The PDF format is great for pre-press, but for everyday reading and reference, it's just too big and the text, of course, is not resizeable. There's a lot of information in this book, and while the book is very attractive and nicely designed, I'd much rather be able to just read the text, instead of zooming in on the pdf and scrolling around the screen to follow the columns. It makes a leisurely read-through difficult, and as a refernence book it's basically useless. Realistically, you're probably going to need to buy the physical book whether or not you own the PDF, because the PDF is just not convenient. An epub version would solve that, and while I have extracted all the text from this book in an effort to convert it to a hand-rolled epub, there's A LOT of text to deal with, and proofing it and fixing all the tables just isn't really worth my time. PDF is a horrible format for a digital lifestyle, and how ironic that a game about the tech elite should have no clue how to cater to modern technologists.

Aside from format issues, this is a great rulebook and a great game.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition)
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Sam B. S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/18/2015 18:00:12

Amazing setting! However a little more editing would have gone a long way as a book that sets you back $60 for hard copy really shouldn't have as many spelling errors as this one has.

Also no one likes being told "more info on this in another book you can pay us for!!" Really, info on running your own host and other matrix stuff really ought to have been included in this book instead of Data Trails. It's fairly obnoxious something that fundamental to matrix play was left out.

Other than that, wonderful intro to an older setting that has been vigorously and wonderfully revived for a whole new generation! I'll raise a cup of soycaf to the designers for that!



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition)
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Carl L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/12/2015 11:25:02

I skipped around this book to see if some of the problems I had with 4th Ed. had been addressed. So when I came across the Gear section and saw how they had added even more tedious BS involving the PAN, including how you could change the color of some guns if they were inked to said PAN, honestly I put the tablet down and haven't looked at it since.

I did see something of how they added in benefits for Adepts having Totems, which has been a want for SR fans since 1st Ed., so good on them for that.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition)
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Mark M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/24/2015 16:13:34

I do not like the SR5 core rulebook. It is poorly organized, poorly edited, assumes you already know Shadowrun, and is filled with esoteric rules and bolted on mechanics that are unnecessary in a core rulebook. This blog summarizes much of my dislike http://lookrobot.co.uk/2013/10/14/ten-things-hate-shadowrun/. A few of my favorites flaws are that to find out what happens when your condition monitor is full you need to look in the character creation rules instead of the combat/damage resolution rules, wireless rules are scattered about the matrix, rigger and equipment sections, and matrix programs add more complexity to an already arbitrarily complex set of custom rules for deckers.

I've never played SR4, but SR5 feels like a big step down from SR3.



Rating:
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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition)
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Skip W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/24/2015 15:48:23

Shadowrun: Fifth Edition is a mixed bag of amazing new concepts, and refreshed redesigns of previous editions.

I have played Shadowrun for almost 20 years, and I find this to be the most enjoyable edition to play yet. The rules are well thought out. The new designers have a plan for the game, and the power level of Shadowrun has been re-established to the Street Level of 1st/2nd edition.

The rules have been unified (generally) to a dice roll of Attribute+Skill with successes limited by some factor either physical or equipment based.

The book's art is glorious and it is enhanced by the fiction that introduces players to the 6th World. I encourage all players to read, really read the fiction. It's good enough to get you into the mood of the game.

I own a print copy of this book, and this PDF as well. The PDF is well built. The background graphics, foreground graphics, and text are separate layers, so depending on the speed of your device you may turn down the complexity of the display. Links are every where and the table of contents is easy to navigate.

The PDF has been updated with the errata, which is refreshing to see from a publisher. Spelling has been fixed as time has gone on, and other changes have been made too. Pages have even shifted around a bit too, so even if you have owned it for a while, some of the rules have been clarified for newer players.

All in all, I recommend this book. If you are new to the game you might want to try the Digital Tools Box first. It's a good intro and it gives new players a staged intro to the game.

http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/125721/Shadowrun-Digital-Tools-Box

5 Stars because of layout and updates. I would give 4 for the rules, but they are slowly but surely getting erratas.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition)
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Nick E. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/20/2015 17:57:29

With a price you really can't beat, and search functions (in most readers) that make up for the slightly disorganised layout, SR5 Core Book is a good buy.

As I said the layout can be troublesome for players familiar with D&D3.5 or Pathfinder as occasionally you will find small but relevant rules tucked away in sections that do not necessarily corespond with the rules themselves. However, a searchable PDF does help here.

The game itself is great, and while the rule complexity can slow combat until you're more familiar with it, it is totally worth learning. The base rules, lore and equipment available in the Core Book are a great starting point and let you get a good grip on the game before investing in the other SR5 titles.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition)
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Michael D. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/18/2015 13:29:35

Atrocious, just atrocious. It's like the developers wanted to undo every good thing that ever happened throughout Shadowrun's entire history. Point buy has been abandoned in favor of the old, clunky Priority Table and is worse than ever with Metatype being a bigger swindle than ever and Magic going from the best choice to being the end all be all. Fixed Initiative Passes have been replaced with the old "roll to see how many turns you get" nonsense that turns Shadowrun's already slow gameplay into an endurance test. The worthwhile statlines for dwarves and trolls has been replaced by pathetic stats for their Priority cost and penalties to cash. Gunplay has been reverted back to the old harsh limitations of "one shot per Pass" that 1st edition knew to get rid of in it's VERY FIRST SPLATBOOK. It's just insane.

The new is pretty bad as well. Mystic Adepts have been changed so that they now get everything that Adepts and Magicians get at the cost of having to spend essentially peanuts to get a few things that the other two get for free. Riggers are more powerful than ever with new drone options that let them eat folks alive. And cyber samurai are more screwed than ever thanks to inflated dice pools forcing them to buy even more cycberware to get the same level of effectiveness as previous editions and Limits causing their shrinking Essence to bite them during legwork.

That brings me to Limits. This is, no hyperbole, the worst mechanic I've ever seen in a roleplaying game. They impose unintuitive caps on how many successes you can get based on your Attributes and equipment that causes all sorts of nonsense such as requiring you to be big and strong to sneak around and making bare fists more likely to finish someone off than a sword. It's stupid, tedious, and serves no purpose. It doesn't even accomplish its stated goal of making better gear mean more since people using no gear only have to contend with their personal Limits instead of both their Limits and the equipment's Limits nor does it prevent crazy lucky rolls from causing huge upsets because Edge points can now be spent to temporarily remove Limits whenever wildly lucky rolls come up. I'd say that Limits are a gangrenous limb of a mechanic that should've been hacked off of this mess during alpha testing, but that would imply that ANY of the playtesting was spent trying to improve the game rather than appease grognards that grumbled about how everything was better back in their day.

In short, burning this book would be an insult to fire.



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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition)
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Jason W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/29/2014 17:45:27

This book is hard to use. Hard to find anything in. You have to go to two or three different locations to get the information on any one thing. It is terrible. I love the Shadowrun setting, but I hate the material.



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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition)
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Andrew P. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/15/2014 16:43:07

Originally published at http://screenmonkey.blog.com/2014/01/15/review-shadowrun-5th-edition/

Shadowrun was my first cyberpunk game I ever heard of. Before that, I didn't even know the genre existed. It was in Second edition when I first heard about it, and I have been following every edition since then. So it's no surprise that as soon as I heard that they were making a new edition I was hooked.

This review is of the PDF version mainly, although I have not yet found any discrepancies with the my physical copy.

The PDF clocks in at 489 pages, including a 5 pages table of contents, 6 page index, covers, art pages and some consolidated tables and character sheet at the end for another 14 pages, and 3 pages of adds for tie in video games. This leaves a total of 461 pages of content. Bookmarks are well done and pretty complete, and the ToC is hyper-linked to every subheading I tried.

The artwork ranges from decent to good, with a few full page pieces and quite a number of half page pieces as well. The art rarely detracts from the book other than in a few places where it doesn't reflect what is written on the page (Two notable exceptions are the Combat Mage Archetype, where the picture is of a troll but the metatype says human, And the splash art for the Rigger fiction, which shows an Ork driving and the rigger in the passenger seat).

Speaking of the fiction, there's some at the start of every chapter. These are short pieces that highlight what the section is about, and are pretty well written. They evoke the setting as much as the individual sections, and will hopefully get any prospective GM thinking about situations to put their players in.

The game system itself is well explained, with good examples in sidebars. You do have to hunt around for some things that could have been better organized though. Limits and drain resistance tests are two of the things that should have been better organized, as the only place I've found where the calculations for them are not where you'd expect them to be. The limit calculation is at the end of character creation when filling in the last little fiddly bits, and the drain resistance stats are sidebars in the magic section, where traditions are explained. Not deal breakers, but both could have also been explained in the appropriate sections of the text for redundancy without hurting the overall document.

The section on the state of the world at the beginning of the book is relatively short, only 23 pages. But it covers a wide variety of topics and gives the broad strokes of the world without spending a lot of time on it. It's missing a lot of the history that came through in previous editions, but I can forgive that as it was more concerned with explaining the way the world is in 2070 rather than how it got that way. It covers the major players in the corporate world, goes over extraterritoriality (one of the cornerstones of the game world), and the day to day life of the average person.

Character creation has brought back the priority system, with the give and take that it entails. You can still min-max to a degree, but characters seem to be a bit more balanced overall. It introduces a couple of wrinkles from the old version by adding in 'special attribute points' under the metatype heading. These points are spent on things like magic, resonance and edge. the higher up the priority is, the more points you have to spend.

Magic, the matrix and riggers get their own chapter, although riggers seems to be a bit short as it mostly works off the same rules as the matrix, and really only the differences are highlighted in that chapter. Magic got a big boost in this edition, separating out alchemy, spell casting, summoning and rituals all as distinct ways of doing things. I particulary like how rituals are completely distinct from spell casting, and not just a way to cast spells without a visual link like in previous editions. The rituals actually feel like rituals that might take hours to perform. It still allows you to cast those combat spells at a distance, but it also allows for healing and protective circles that last for hours or days without the need to be sustained, and a couple of other neat affects like summoning watchers and homunculus that don't really fit in the regular summoning rules. Alchemy allows you to put a spell into a physical form to be used later, and allows you to prepare ahead of time spells that you want to be able to cast and allowing you to resist drain before going on a run. Adepts are back and receive a decent treatment, but really don't seem to change all that much between editions. Which is a shame, because I'd really like them to get a fuller look than they have in the past. Theoretically they should be able to excel at anything, and the idea of the adept decker just makes me smile, even if he does give up a bit of his magic to get the datajacks.

Combat has changed a bit from 4th edition, with characters getting an action at their initiative on the first pass, then subtracting 10 from the initiative and everyone who still has a positive initiative getting a second/third/etc action. They've added in some changes that can affect your initiative as well. Whenever a character elects to dodge, block or parry they subtract 5 from their initiative but get to roll more dice for defense, for that one action only. You can also reduce init by 10 to add your willpower to your defense rolls for the rest of the combat turn (especially good idea for squishy mages and deckers with decent willpower).

The matrix section brings back the Deckers and decks. Commlinks are now useful, but unable to perform illegal actions like decks can. Netcops have also gotten worse, and every decker and knows that it's just a matter of time before they stomp on you. Luckily, they are more like a fire and forget missile, and once they've bounced you from the matrix they don't bother following up other than forwarding your location to whoever you were trying to hack at the time. This works by giving you an overwatch score that starts as soon as you do something illegal, even if the target didn't notice it. It also goes up over time, and once it hits a certain level they drop the hammer. They hit your deck, possibly frying it, and dump you from the matrix. There's no roll to resist this, it just happens. Technomancers can get this especially bad, as instead of frying their deck they get knocked out or killed by the feedback.

In all, I have to say that I like the new edition of Shadowrun a lot. I'm a not a complete fanboy, and there are parts that irk me, but It's a solid new edition and the publisher seems to be committed to the line and releasing new material.

Pros: Good looking book, solid mechanics and fiction gives a good feel for the universe

Cons: Some organizational issues, history is missing some key points of cannon from previous editions.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition)
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Cory H. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/02/2013 00:00:00

Very clean and beautiful book. My only criticism is the layout has a couple jump arounds in character creation, but mechanics and game balances are amazingly well done.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Shadowrun: Fifth Edition Core Rulebook (Master Index Edition)
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by marcus m. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/08/2013 15:56:13

A fantastic, comprehensive guide to doing anything shadowrun. I'd recommend this over DnD/pathfinder any day of the week. Great depth on every subject makes you more attached to your characters, the storyline, etc. Even activities like PC/NPC creation and Matrix runs are enjoyable, tons of opportunity for creativity. Definitely a 5/5.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
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