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Tomb of Nyarlathotep
Publisher: Brian Seligman
by Ubiratan A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/04/2015 12:20:01

The concept and atmosphere for this adventure are good, but the opponents placed within (other than the final enemy) are a bit underwhelming. This doesn't feel like it should be an adventure for first-level characters. Thankfully it shouldn't be hard to stock the dungeon with more impressive enemies and treasure while keeping the overall story the same.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Tomb of Nyarlathotep
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Marvel Heroic Roleplaying: Civil War Event Book (Essentials Edition)
Publisher: Margaret Weis Productions
by Ubiratan A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/27/2012 14:03:24

It's got the same high quality as the core game, and a lot of usable hero data files. However, the Civil War storyline, with which I wasn't familiar before, didn't appeal to me very much. On the bright side, the book presents a chance to run things differently from how they were in the comics.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Marvel Heroic Roleplaying: Civil War Event Book (Essentials Edition)
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Technoir
Publisher: Dream Machine Productions
by Ubiratan A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/27/2012 13:58:29

This is a blast to read, and it gets the feel of classic cyberpunk just right. The system seems pretty fun and workable, centered around building a story the whole table can agree on while following the game's main themes. If you don't want to use it, though, the game's mechanics for generating a plot on the fly based on the PC's connections are more or less independent from the rest of the rules, and could easily be lifted for use in other games.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Technoir
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Shards of the Exalted Dream
Publisher: Onyx Path Publishing
by Ubiratan A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/27/2012 13:51:16

Quite possibly one of the best Exalted supplements I've ever read, and an excellent sendoff to the game's second edition. The alternate settings are pretty good, and all of them feel new and fresh. The mechanics hew to the high standard of the recent Scroll of Errata and the Glories of the Most High supplements, and bring at long last official support for "modern" Exalted (my first Exalted Modern campaign was in 2004 or thereabouts).



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Shards of the Exalted Dream
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Shadowrun: 99 Bottles
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Ubiratan A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 06/08/2012 16:14:29

This is a surprisingly nice adventure! It manages to present a dark setting while still making the player characters feel suitably anti-heroic, which is more than can be said of some earlier releases such as Ghost Cartels or certain Missions adventures, which expects your group to be downright villainous.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Shadowrun: 99 Bottles
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Shadowrun: Mercurial
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Ubiratan A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 06/08/2012 16:06:33

This is a classic for a reason. The plot is deceptively simple, and converting this to a more recent edition of Shadowrun or even to another system would be pretty easy. It's more than worth the price tag.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Shadowrun: Mercurial
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Shadowrun: Artifacts Unbound
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Ubiratan A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 06/08/2012 15:55:17

This book is a sequel of sorts to the Dawn of the Artifacts adventure series, which ends in a vague note, promising that all of its loose ends will be wrapped up here. Given this is a full-sized book, I expected it to both deliver on this promise, and to offer adventures and plot hooks for new artifacts, and maybe even rules to use artifacts in play.


I regret to say I was disappointed. "Artifacts Unbound" vacillates between wanting to be a sequel to Dawn of the Artifacts, a companion to the "Artifact Rush" plot line in the Shadowrun Missions adventures, and an introduction to the whole "artifacts" arc. It succeeds somewhat on the later two goals, but not on the first, which is the one I was the most interested in.


The main problem I had with the adventures and plot hooks in Artifacts Unbound was that they focus solely on the same four artifacts your PCs spent four long adventures chasing and obtaining. It weaves a tale saying they "don't want to be together" for some reason, and uses that as an excuse to have them turn up all over the world again and again. And again. And again. Most of the pages in the book are dedicated to sending the players after the same old four artifacts several more times, which devalues the effort they went through during Dawn of the Artifacts.


A few of the adventures here are appropriate as sequels, since they involve chasing after the secret to unlocking the power of these "Dawn" artifacts, or entirely unrelated items of similar power. They're not the majority of the material, though.


In short, this book will be far more useful for groups who haven't played through Dawn of the Artifacts. There's enough information here on the four artifacts from that series, and enough adventures focused on chasing them around to provide context. Groups who have played through Dawn of the Artifacts might as well just skip to the very last fiction piece, which delivers the promised payoff, and then play the independent adventures after that.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Shadowrun: Artifacts Unbound
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Shadowrun: Horizon Adventure 2 Anarchy: Subsidized
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Ubiratan A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/30/2012 12:21:07

This adventure contains some innovative systems, and a somewhat unorthodox story, but unfortunately I was still disappointed with it, because frankly the mission itself is a little repulsive.


On the surface, it almost sounds like something out of the early days of Shadowrun - help an oppressed artist leave the claws of her evil corporate masters! Except you're "helping" her through a smear campaign that involves selling a baby clone of her to the black market, and the final goal is to deliver the artist into the claws of another corporate master. For an adventure that claims to bring the punk back into Shadowrun, it sure makes you sell out big time.


Like the first Horizon adventure, it hides the seeds of something good, but making them bloom properly would require extensive reworking. But while you could at least use the first half of the previous adventure basically unchanged, you'll have to rework all of Anarchy Subsizided if you're not okay with its basic plot. I'm not sure it's worth even the discounted PDF price.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Shadowrun: Horizon Adventure 2 Anarchy: Subsidized
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Leverage: The Quickstart Job
Publisher: Margaret Weis Productions
by Ubiratan A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/30/2011 12:11:53

It's a pretty good introduction, and a blast to play with people who know the series, but it feels a little too "scripted" at times.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Leverage: The Quickstart Job
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6-Pack Adventures: Sickness in Springdale [4e]
Publisher: Postmortem Studios
by Ubiratan A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/18/2011 11:13:12

My previous experience with ready-made D&D adventures was mostly with the ones from Dungeon Magazine. Compared with the long, pointless, blood-soaked slogs published there, this one comes off as short, sweet, to the point, and overall very nice. It packs a lot of atmosphere on its short setting description and introductory chapter, and the pregen characters included here nicely complement the storyline with their differing opinions and potential for intra-party drama.


It also doesn't feel the need to make characters advance levels by shoehorning 10-20 combat encounters into the storyline - the combats that are there are all very dramatically appropriate and serve the story, rather than the other way around.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
6-Pack Adventures: Sickness in Springdale [4e]
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Shadowrun: Horizon Adventure 1:A Fistful of Credsticks
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Ubiratan A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/18/2011 11:04:30

A Fistful of Credsticks is a decent adventure, but not a truly great one. It does a good job of exposing your shadowrunners to the Sixth World celebrity scene, but despite being labeled as a "Horizon Adventure" the part of it that actually has anything to do with Horizon is a bit contrived. It feels like it was added later, and so this book suffers from a somewhat attenuated form of the problem First Run had. The first half of it is a perfectly fine series of shadowruns, with no relation to Horizon. Getting the second part to happen takes a lot of railroading on the part of the GM, or some work to make it better. It does give those who thought Horizon was "too clean" something to chew on, though.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Shadowrun: Horizon Adventure 1:A Fistful of Credsticks
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Shadowrun: Mission: 04-01: Hiding in the Dark
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Ubiratan A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/15/2011 07:49:24

Shadowrun Missions have come a long way from their humble beginnings - this one is among the better published adventures for Shadowrun I've read in a while.


It sets the runners up with the job of tracking down a suspect for the police, a mob boss that they can't reach through their normal means. It lays out a fairly logical chain of investigation to get to this suspect, and has a hard, meaningful choice for the players at the end. It's possible the players might guess what that choice is before it's fully set up, but that doesn't take away from its weight. I would recommend Game Masters spend a bit of time thinking about the ending before they run the adventure, and prepare for the case when runners choose an option not outlined in the pre-written material. They should run with it, of course, but shouldn't be caught by surprise. This is one of those sticky situations where none of the "default" choices might feel good, so some players will enjoy thinking up alternatives.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Shadowrun: Mission: 04-01: Hiding in the Dark
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Shadowrun: On The Run
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Ubiratan A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/29/2010 10:13:40

This is a fairly good adventure, with lots of advice for beginning GM's, but it has a serious plot flaw, in that about half of it will only happen if your players are curious enough to deviate from their given mission parameters and investigate the true nature of the McGuffin they've been asked to retrieve. If you aren't sure they will do that on their own, you will have to include some extra incentive.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Shadowrun: On The Run
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Cyberpunk v.3
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Ubiratan A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/29/2010 10:10:01

This was a disappointment for me. The layout is actually painful to look at on a screen, it's hard to find the rules you want, and enough has been said about the doll art that I don't need to elaborate further. Plus, the book is incomplete - the print version has some 18 extra pages that aren't present on the PDF. If you absolutely must own this game, go with the print version.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Cyberpunk v.3
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Ex Machina
Publisher: Guardians of Order
by Ubiratan A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/29/2010 10:05:36

An excellent book about cyberpunk roleplaying. It starts off with a history of the genre, in both literature and RPGs, provides a set of workable Tri-Stat rules for cyberpunk games, and closes off with four very good and very distinct settings.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Ex Machina
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