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Machinations: The Nova Praxis GM's Companion [FATE] $19.99 $8.99
Average Rating:4.0 / 5
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Machinations: The Nova Praxis GM\'s Companion [FATE]
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Machinations: The Nova Praxis GM's Companion [FATE]
Publisher: Void Star Games
by Stirling W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/04/2014 12:29:59

To put it bluntly, I was disappointed with this product. I have some players who have asked to play in the Nova Praxis setting, and so I've been reading through the main book, plotting out ideas for stories. This has been very frustrating as the main book contradicts itself, has huge exploitable loop holes in the setting, and basically describes a society that is inconsistent with the technology that sustains it. My notes on how to make things make sense keep growing hourly.

Perhaps it was too much to hope that a GM's add-on product would acknowledge and/or attempt to fix some of these flaws, but there is no evidence of that. Instead there is some more background info on the Houses which is useful and adds color, but causes confusion as well, as it fails to answer the one question that I have about every adventure: why isn't House X handling this itself?

Basically, if you have a shadow war, you need some reason for the houses to involve outsiders. Plausible deniability is fine, but that can only take you so far. When a house can modify identities and change records, you have to wonder why they don't just have shady internal groups of ninjas doing all their dirty work. Why take on the PCs?

And given that the main premise is that the players are minor characters in the shadow wars, why is so much of this book devoted to having them work as (essentially) government agents? These plots are of no practical use to me in this setting.

Other questions I wanted answered that weren't: What are interplanetary ships like? How fast do they go? What weaponry do they carry? Just how many jump gates are there (the main book says both 2 and 'hundreds') and what prevents them from being used as a terrorist weapon? Why doesn't any pre-mimir technology exist in the apostate colonies? Why are vulcan swarms so damn important when eveyone already knows how to build buildings?



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Publisher Reply:
Hi Stirling, I\'m sad to hear you were disappointed. But I\'d be happy to try to address some of your concerns. And please feel free to contact me at mike@voidstarstudios.com with any questions/concerns that I don\'t cover below. \"Why isn\'t House X handling this itself?\" It does, often. The PCs are generally a mix of House members and Auxiliaries, but there are certainly Auxiliary teams that work exclusively for certain Houses. And the Houses also have their own internal groups entirely loyal to the House, check out the \"Enforcement\" section in each House\'s write-up. Cipher, The Red Sun, Reaper Teams, Wendigos... all of these are serve the role of the House\'s \"internal groups of ninjas\". :) \"Why take on the PCs?\" Use of internal organizations like those listed above would still require some degree of consent within the House leadership. But often times, Shadow War activities are initiated and carried out by factions within a House that may be at odds with another faction. Within the Houses, the \"sanctioned\" groups listed above would still operate somewhat on the record. Mixed team Auxiliaries (like the PCs usually are) can operate fully in the shadows, and their missions are likely only known to very few people. \"Why is so much of this book devoted to having them work as (essentially) government agents?\" We wanted to present a few new campaign styles as options for the GM. While I felt that the Shadow War stuff was a good, familiar, jumping off point for GMs in the core book; I wanted to show that there was more to the setting. Campaigns based around Phalanx Formations and Scholae Palatinae offer opportunities for the GM to offer up different sorts of missions. And as you can see in the Arcs, they sort of roll into each other., offering crews opportunities to advance and grow. So you could play as Auxiliaries, eventually become a Phalanx Formation, and then one day get \"promoted\" to become Scholae. \"What are interplanetary ships like? How fast do they go? What weaponry do they carry?\" In addition to the Silverpike in the core book, Machinations contains a new sample ship (The Chickenhawk). Speeds and weaponry are covered in the vehicles chapter of the NP core book. Is there something more specific you\'d like to know? \"Just how many jump gates are there (the main book says both 2 and \'hundreds\')\" Any properly equipped star ship can produce a jump gate. If you mean Jump Rings, there are two in the Sol system, but many more in the network between Sol and the other planets. \"...and what prevents them from being used as a terrorist weapon?\" Nothing. Sounds like a good plot for a campaign. :) \"Why doesn\'t any pre-mimir technology exist in the apostate colonies?\" Some do, but it depends on the type of technology. Mimir-tech became common before the Exodus, so most pre-Singularity tech was left behind on Earth. That\'s not to say that someone couldn\'t come along a start producing pre-Singularity weapons and vehicles again, but few Apostate enclaves have the resources to do it. \"Why are vulcan swarms so damn important when eveyone already knows how to build buildings?\" Vulcan swarms allow you to build things designed on the spot, very quickly, out of the surrounding natural materials. That means you don\'t have to acquire and ship much, if any, raw materials to the build site. This is very useful if you want to build something in secret, and/or need it done very quickly. I hope that helps. I always feel bad when I hear that someone is disappointed in one of our books, so please feel free to contact me with any additional questions. Thanks! Mike
Machinations: The Nova Praxis GM's Companion [FATE]
Publisher: Void Star Games
by Francesco C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/01/2014 09:44:29

Extremely well done book! It is full of hints, plot hooks and ideas for us GMs, and for players too (for them the part in wich each House gets an in depth description)! The story arcs and the pregenerated adventure are great too!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Machinations: The Nova Praxis GM's Companion [FATE]
Publisher: Void Star Games
by Jonathan K. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/25/2014 14:50:33

Gorgeous, fascinating setting meets well-crafted supplement.

A deeper look into the world of NP, its factions and politics, and how its society functions. There's a lot of stuff here for GM's to use; overall, I'm very happy with it.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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