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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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The Graveyard at Lus
Publisher: InfiniBadger Press
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/06/2015 18:00:29

OK so, RPGNOW ate my review...


In summary, good product, new spaceship gear and new alien races, good random system to randomly generate a space graveyard


For me, I would have liked to see a few random tables or suggestions on why the PCs are hexcrawling (looking for fuel? following a distress call?), random treasure, random "what's in this spacesuit corpses pockets"



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Graveyard at Lus
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Publisher Reply:
Steven, Thank you so much for the review. The stuff that you mentioned liking to see was consider for inclusion in the core book, but it was felt that the reasons for players being on the crawl should be left up to the Referee, and any particular explorations that occur while on other starships or found treasure should also be left up to the Referee, as there\'s a lot of variance in how people run campaigns. The purpose of the book was to be highly focused and do a very specific thing. However, in the free upcoming Expansions for TGAL, there is additional optional content being provided which may include elements along those lines as it bolts on lots of optional content for the White Star RPG as well as TGAL.
Have Death Ray, Will Travel
Publisher: Magic Pig Media
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/06/2015 17:42:45

Four 4 smackeroos you get a heck of a lot of game in this supplement for Whitestar.


The new classes and new rules are good, but for me the best thing was the campaign, a retro-future Flash Gordon style solar system with evil space emperors, pirates, Venusian Jungles and Martian deserts.


If you enjoyed Saturday morning serials, or Flash Gordon or John Carter or the Galaxy Rangers, this is a campaign you will want to play in.


Other stuff: Art is swingy, some clip art, some comic panels, some line art, nothing crazy bad but a bit uneven in places. I found the format and layout to be fine. If there were any typo's, I missed them because I was too excited about the Lion Men of Ganymede.


I give this book 4 Green Martian Thumbs up!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Have Death Ray, Will Travel
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The Earth Codex
Publisher: Ryan Chaddock Games
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/29/2015 16:26:18

This is a well written and broadly useful set of descriptors and Foci for modern Earth. Any Cypher campaign that focused on the modern world and society will find useful material for characters, and a cyphers to work into the game.


My only regret is that I wish there had been more suggestions for Earth based campaigns. While there are several broad overviews, a few worked examples would have really helped me get a better handle on how to use some of this material in a Strange campaign. (admittedly, I am less familiar with Strange than Numenera, so a more experienced reader may not share my opinion.)


Overall, this a really solid product, useful and well worth the price.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Earth Codex
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Barons of Braunstein
Publisher: Olde House Rules
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/28/2015 15:25:39

Very rules light and interesting RPG, written for Dark and Middle Age adventuring. The game tries to emulate historical fiction, with very little room for high fantasy tropes, but can easy handle monster heavy sword-and-sorcery campaigns.


For the price point, this is a must buy game, and I plan to keep a copy in my GM bag for quick play opportunities. Character generation takes a few minutes at most, and adventures can be spun together on the fly.


I rate it 5 stars, but I think the "low definition, high trust" nature of the rules could make this game a bit rocky with players that like crunchy rules or tricky character builds.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Barons of Braunstein
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Westwater RPG No art version
Publisher: Sacrosanct Games
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/17/2015 18:06:55

This is a somewhat difficult review to write. I remember that this game failed to Kickstart, and I feel that there is a much better version of this game living in the creator's mind. But this is the version we have.


The Good:
A B/X compatible Western RPG, with Gunslingers and Outlaws and rules for firearms.
Options for Historical or Fantasy campaigns
Enough monsters and treasure to run a small campaign for quite awhile, and if you run out... B/X compatible!
A semi-Sandbox adventure included that can generate multiple sessions of adventure.


The Neutral:
Beyond the cover, this game has no art. I'm OK with that, because I know art is expensive, but it does detract from the overall feel of the game.
Editorially, the game could use another pass or two. Nothing major, but a few errors here or there.


The Bad:
Nothing specific, just a general feeling that the game lacks something... some bright shiny thing to make it stand out from the rest of the B/X clones out there.
Again, the sadness that this could have been much cooler if luck and money would have been in its favor.


As a free product, this gets an easy 4 stars.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Westwater RPG No art version
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Five Year Mission
Publisher: Ivanhoe Unbound
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/04/2015 13:21:22

A fun and interesting impulse buy priced item, Five Year Mission adds elements of Star Trek, Farscape and Andromeda to Whitestar, with a number of new classes, ship types and alien races.


There are some really fun ideas in here My favorite is the Expendable class, where the player gets to run a number of "Red Shirt" style crewmen and can expect to see them knocked off as the other players get into and barely survive dangers. My second favorite is the Living Starship class, letting the player roleplay the group's vehicle and homebase in the stars.


A few ideas don't grab me. the Exiled Ruler in particular - based I am sure on the Farscape character - seems like too narrow a character as written, portraying that specific character rather than a more broadly defined archetype.


Hey! For seventy cents this is a no brainer. If yo are playing Whitestar or any other OSR Sci-fi style game it is worthy adding to you tool box.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Five Year Mission
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Publisher Reply:
You\'ll be glad to know that in the final version, the Exiled Ruler has been replaced by the Disgraced, which is a much broader archetype. Thank you for the kind review!
New Class Options
Publisher: Genius Loci Games
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/04/2015 13:09:26

I am giving this product a "Gentleman's 4" since I like many of the ideas and it is an impulse priced item.


Several of the character classes here are interesting for certain types of games: the Pixie and Mermaid are fun, the Mythwood Elf is very interesting, the Chesh and Ruca are great for folks who like faeries and anthropomorphic animal games.


However, some of the classes contain problematic or erroneous mechanics that I feel need to be corrected.


For instance, the Bloodwitch has a 60% chance per day of losing herself in the Song of Magic, during which she doesn't know what is real or what is delusion. The details of such state are never spelled out, so the character may be minorly inconvenienced or majorly incapacitated, depending on the DM... and who wants to play a character that is unplayable every other day.


Also, at each level the Bloodwitch learns 1d8 spells of the next highest level, so presumably a 2nd level Bloodwitch is learning 1d8 2nd level spells and a 3rd level Bloodwitch learns 1d8 3rd level spells and so on, which maybe a bit too quick a power escalation for some games.


All in all though, for the price I saw more good than bad here and came away with several ideas for interesting PCs and NPCs for my games.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
New Class Options
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Blood of Pangea
Publisher: Olde House Rules
by Steven W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/09/2015 11:13:11

Blood of Pangea bills itself as a Sword & Sorcery genre game, but really the rules are so universal that you could easy run almost any genre of game.


Characters are described narratively ("Blunk is an expert tracker and horseman...") rather than numerically, so the type of character you can play is very broad, but actual mechanical differentiation is very shallow. Players and GMs that love mechanical heft and detailed character construction will be unsatisfied. Players and GMs that like fast play and loose detail will like this game,


This game reminds me a lot of B/X D&D, but also a bit of Fate or Heroquest as well.


I was very pleased with this game, and will make a place for it in my GM's bag for pick up games.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Blood of Pangea
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