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Ghastly Affair Player's Manual
Publisher: Daniel James Hanley
by Andy B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/22/2017 17:16:22

This thing is awesome. I picked up the Players and Presenters books, both worth every penny you pay for it. They are ripe with possibility and fun. I thought they were more in the style of a Old School game than the listed modified D&D. Ive loved the OSRIC movement and have been hording these kind of books.

These two books give so much toward creating the setting, mood, and beats of a Gothic story. You could run a game for a decade exploring whats in this book. Especially if you raid other old books for more 'd20esque' material. Imagine using Colonial Gothic (or Northern Crown) as setting pieces or cherry picking fun aspects from Ravenloft's Masque of the Red Death or Van Richten's guides. Its amazing what kind of stories practically beg to be animated with this system.

The two books do not overlap. You need the players guide for the raw system and making characters. The presenters book was all about informing the gothic feel as well as inhabiting your world with characters and animals and monsters. I bought them both together and only wish they had a package deal. I leaped into the deep end after reading through both full-sized previews, I knew I wanted in. If you have even the faintest of interests in this period or style, do not hesitate.

I almost never give 5 stars. Its so hard to consider something 'perfect' but I dropped one for each book. They were both well earned. I dont know how I could say more or better than that for any game.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Ghastly Affair Player's Manual
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Creator Reply:
Thank you for the wonderful review! Also, thank you for pointing out that the "Ghastly Affair" books were not listed in the OSR category. It was an oversight that I have now corrected.
Ghastly Affair Presenter's Manual
Publisher: Daniel James Hanley
by Andy B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/22/2017 17:16:14

This thing is awesome. I picked up the Players and Presenters books, both worth every penny you pay for it. They are ripe with possibility and fun. I thought they were more in the style of a Old School game than the listed modified D&D. Ive loved the OSRIC movement and have been hording these kind of books.

These two books give so much toward creating the setting, mood, and beats of a Gothic story. You could run a game for a decade exploring whats in this book. Especially if you raid other old books for more 'd20esque' material. Imagine using Colonial Gothic (or Northern Crown) as setting pieces or cherry picking fun aspects from Ravenloft's Masque of the Red Death or Van Richten's guides. Its amazing what kind of stories practically beg to be animated with this system.

The two books do not overlap. You need the players guide for the raw system and making characters. The presenters book was all about informing the gothic feel as well as inhabiting your world with characters and animals and monsters. I bought them both together and only wish they had a package deal. I leaped into the deep end after reading through both full-sized previews, I knew I wanted in. If you have even the faintest of interests in this period or style, do not hesitate.

I almost never give 5 stars. Its so hard to consider something 'perfect' but I dropped one for each book. They were both well earned. I dont know how I could say more or better than that for any game.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Ghastly Affair Presenter's Manual
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The Lucanii Drift
Publisher: Kitsune Press
by Andy B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/15/2017 18:02:07

I really cant say much that will add to what Jay W covered. He did a good job. I bought it at full price and thought it was worth every penny. I can only hope they make some more 'Starships & Spacemen' game supplements.

I would state that the general theme of the story was the original Star Trek and perhaps some influences from the television cartoon series. Ive been in the mood for a good retro sci-fi and I think this would work perfectly. They add some nice racial options. Always appreciated. They added some nice space opera sock'em rules. Then the detailed mapping of a huge sector of space. I liked all the tiny changes they made to the system and the reasons they made them. Everything only enhanced the game as a genre.

As I said before I hope they give us more material. Right off the top of my head, a Space 1999 scenario on a moon flung from its planetary orbit but have it happen in your world. You could even set it as a hundred years or so in the past. This is how the Confederation came into being. From this one acident flinging a dying moon into a warp trajectory into alien space. (Got to have a new humanoid species which can shapechange into other animal shapes.) Until with heroic effort they find their way back and form relations with the races now available. Imagine the tweaks you can make to social standings by the outcomes of such an epic journey. Only by using pieces of ancient alien hypertech can they accomplish any kind of reunion and it will take years, maybe even a decade.

You can have that one for free. (Call me.)



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Lucanii Drift
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Dungeons for the Master
Publisher: dicegeeks.com
by Andy B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/15/2016 07:17:47

I have to disagree with the last reviewer. This product is worth its asking price. Each dungeon costs you a little over 3 cents and you have a large variety to chose from.

When I was a kid, I went through a period where I started writing out mazes... designing death traps and prizes to be fought for... the whole thing. Raiders of the Lost Ark had come out and I thought that was the most fun I could have. The creator here, strikes me as someone who has chosen to hone such a skill over the years. He probably comes home from work, pops a beer or listens to music, and then just lets the mazes fly. Now the mazes are not furnished, they are left for you to populate, although there is a very neat table of 100 randomly generated items to place in each room as you explore. Its nothing super detailed, just something to get things started for those haggared fantasy DMs who are throwing a zero prep game together. The point though, is that each of the almost 200 dungeons are unique, each one a snowflake. You can thumb through them and just pick the one that looks the most interesting. With so much variety at such a low cost you can keep using this product over and over. I think it makes a wonderful companion piece to the Moleskin Maps, which provide more 'cave-like' weathered 'pile of speghetti' dungeons. Between the two, you could run Underdark campaigns for D&D characters from first to twentieth level without any need to see the light of day. As to the variety of fonts, those date back to the 'batch' of products he had generated. The artist has released some of these before, offering as 'PWYW' and free downloads from Dicegeeks.com. So one product used one typeset. Another used a slightly different one. This was just a byproduct of how the last 77 mazes were generated over time. This product is about value and utility, not sending your eyeballs to heaven over what your seeing and the magnificence of how everything comes together. Now that being said, I didnt rate it as 5 star, quite simply very little should be 5 star, otherwise the term loses its meaning. With such a variety of independent, small dungeons, which you have given us, perhaps future products could have more of a weathered look ,like a more rounded cave system, or a formerly inhabited/organic feel ,like a rock carved settlement which has been appropriated for other use over the decades or centuries. These are just some quick suggestions which might make up a great companion piece to what you have given us. Also a few suggestions for details within might be fun, like a dias and throne or a grand statue or a pit trap or a pile of supplies in an out of the way place. This last bit is not really needed, just a thought to make the product feel more inspiring. In conclusion, give this product serious consideration if your the type of DM, like me, who likes to pick up a map which looks interesting and not too long and likes to start setting up what the party might run into along the way. These are skeletons onto which we build our games. This product is a wise investment in my opinion.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Dungeons for the Master
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Creator Reply:
Thank you so much for this amazing review! I hope you have many exciting adventures using the maps!
Generic Fantasy Map
Publisher: dicegeeks.com
by Andy B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/28/2016 19:45:36

I could not get it to download at first. I then forgot about it... dropping a negative review and a single star and then getting on with my life. This was unfair. It is a free product... dropping a few dollars if it works for you. I came across it one day... I like dicegeeks. They make nice generic maps. I was able to download one of the downloads here, but not the other one. The one called 'Dicegeeks Fantasy Map'. I have rest my rating and gotten the other one to drop. A nice detailed single page map which would be great for an interesting fantasy adventure. Thanks Dicegeeks for the wonderful products you consistently give us. If you can find a way to reset that last piece, it would be nice, but really for what we get from your company, that just an extra layer of icing.

Keep churning out the useful maps.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Generic Fantasy Map
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Wolf-packs and Winter Snow
Publisher: Dying Stylishly Games
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/28/2016 21:35:17

I cannot believe no one has written anything about this amazing little gem. Well, since no one else is tripping over themselves to do it, Ill give it a try. Quick version... just get the thing. If you have to have a few good reasons to get into something, then lets proceed to the Long version.

This is yet another of a long line of 'retro-clones' of everyones favorite fantasy classic rpg. That means you probably already know most of the mechanics involved. Now what I think is fun is if one where to get a couple of retro-clones and just kind of... crosspolinated them. Imagine this awesome Ice Age rpg engine (it literally writes itself out... plotting groups and caves and monster-types even 'unnaturalness'.) and Silent Legions (a do-it-yourself Lovecroftian toolkit of a retroclone). Since they use compatible mechanics, it easy to borrow one from another.

Now I kind of peaked my hand in this whimsical 'what you can do with retro-clones' moment, but W&W is very different from the pack. It easily lays out an Ice Age existence from which to rp from. It is easy enough to play this out either straight historic or fantatical with 'serpent people' and an awesome magic system based on the mystic hermic shaman traditions. It just doesnt tell you how to make a character and play out a small scenario and then a sign 'pay money to go from here'. This book is a complete work onto itself. Its art is perhaps sparce, though evocative, sillohettes. Any sourcebook added to it would be full of hopefully as well thought out options.

This is the first book for this company and it is a very strong offering. I will definitely take a strong look at anything they publish. I dont give fives often, but for being 'PWYW' and this spot on with the content there really was no other choice.

So if you picked the Long version, here is what we like to call the conclusion. Pick up this lovely addition to anyones library. Even if you never play an Ice Age retro-clone game (an really, who hasnt thought of such before) the insights could easily mix into a more modern setting as a wonderfully spiritual urban primative sourcebook.

Just download it and leave a tip in the jar so they might give us something else almost as goood as this book.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Wolf-packs and Winter Snow
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Shadowplans - Pack #2 [BUNDLE]
Publisher: Shadowplans
by Andrew B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/12/2016 00:12:44

This is a great product, but this second Map Pack was nowhere near as well organized as the first one. Because of this I had to knock off a star. Sorry.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Shadowplans - Pack #2 [BUNDLE]
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Creator Reply:
Hi Andrew, Thanks for the feedback! As I uploaded these products all individually I think I failed to consider the file footprint when trying to download all of them at once. The first pack was a single product containing all 10 maps so it\'s just 3 archives. This caused some confusion, with some double purchases here and there between the pack and the singles. To combat this I\'m using the site standard Bundle this time around, which means 10 individual products each with their archives, which I can imagine would be quite a lot more files and ended up quite disorganized. I\'ve gone through the products and reduced each to just 2 archives per product with consistent folder/file naming (one for PDF\'s, one for JPGs), so a total of 12. Hopefully that will be a lot more reasonable. If you have any other ideas, suggestions or comments that you think would improve this or any other aspect of the product please let me know.
Justice Wheels #6 Hexarcana [ICONS]
Publisher: Fainting Goat Games
by Andrew B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/26/2016 10:25:04

This is my favorite of this series. I have the entire run. I liked their take on vehicle rules an the whole set is great as illustrated examples of the simplified rules. They even feature a chart cross referencing different forms of escape and pursuit. Its perfect, when you think about it. Then there is this #6 issue.

Hexarcana ,of course, reminds me of a paticular hellish biker from the movies, which is great. Out of the entire Justice wheels set, I would most likely play her right out of the box. If anything about this series peaks your interest buy this episode, the vehicle rules are packed in the back. You will have my favorite of the set to look over and see if the rest are worth collecting. (I thought so, and Im stingy.) If you decide not, you invested only one dollar and still have a kick but antihero biker chick with a nice set of rules for vehicles in your ICONS game. Trust me, either way you do not lose.

For the price and what it gives you this product has earned every star I have given it. I cant give it five because... lets face it... its not an opera or anything. I have to save something for the next Divine Comedy: the RPG.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Justice Wheels #6 Hexarcana [ICONS]
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Iconic Legends: Gan Astral Knight
Publisher: Rogue Genius Games
by Andrew B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/20/2016 14:14:27

I have to quantify this review with a simple revelation about my tastes. I hate these tiny one character releases. Id rather buy a large book for more money with more characters. If its ICONS I still buy them, though, because I like to keep up on all things ICONS. I grumble about it to myself, though.

The one exception to this resentment of mine is Rogue Genius Games Iconic Legends series. The art is great. The characters are well done. They interweave and create a feel of classic Marvel comics... though with the serial numbers filed off you can tinker with them more before offending anyone. These are quality releases on every level.

Now for my one complaint about this series. There are so many more of them still only in Mutants & Masterminds statistics only. Please convert more of them into ICONS I would buy every one without hesitation like the Recluse and others. You could use this formula for larger releases rather than just one character at a time... maybe one about a whole school of children cursed with awesome... thier guaridans, some students and teachers, thier grounds and security, thier top secret VTOL plane. You know what I mean...

I hope to see a lot more of this series in my favorite system.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Iconic Legends: Gan Astral Knight
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111 fantasy maps (lowres)
Publisher: Megaton Games
by Andrew B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/27/2015 07:36:38

The resolution of these maps is so low as to barely make them usable. There is a legend included, but the maps are so blurred by the time you expand them to see something, its a digital smudge. The examples in the text of this game are better resolution than they are if you look for them in this bundle. Good thing they cost about a penny a map.

Because of the price, I cant complain past that. A have a pretty good collection of maps already, though. Im not sure Ill be using these.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
111 fantasy maps (lowres)
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Creator Reply:
Hi Andrew! The maps should be exactly the same resolution/quality as the ones shown on the product page. If anyone else experienced any problems we\'d be happy to know! Please send us an e-mail: info(at)megatongames.com Please note that some mobile devices (tablets etc) might show the images in a bad way.
[ICONS]The Super Villain Handbook Basic Edition
Publisher: Fainting Goat Games
by Andrew B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 06/26/2015 09:20:34

This book feels unfinished. Especially when compared to Dr. Tondros Field Guides to Superheroes. Concepts end in the middle of pages. Not every archetype has a picture. The archetype examples do not have any names, just stats hanging at the end of each article. For example one under 'Cosmic Menace' looks like a shark composed of stars and nebula gases like a more animalistic Galactus which doesnt look like a giant guy wearing a pointy helment. I guess you could call it... 'the Cosmic Menace' or 'the Galactic Shark' or 'Jax, the Eater of Stars'.

I think his Kickstarter program reached the levels to trigger making the 'Youverse' and the double lengthed expert edition and so they just left this book on its final edits. "We'll cover the rest of this stuff in the delux edition," they no doubt told themselves. The problem is you can feel this rushed incompleteness. If this product peaks your interest, you should probably wait for the double the pages at double the price deluxe edition.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
[ICONS]The Super Villain Handbook Basic Edition
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Creator Reply:
Andrew sorry you were disappointed hit me up at mikelaff at gmail dot com and I\'ll refund your full purchase price.
ICONS: Gamemaster Screen
Publisher: Ad Infinitum Adventures
by andrew b. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/04/2015 21:55:57

I had downloaded the newest version which is supposed to be compatible with the assembled edition. Just recently I found a typo about the dice rolled. I went back to see if there is a correction, and there isn't. Its kind of major. The test resolution roll is made with (power + d6) - (difficulty + d6) = effort. On the GM screen, though, it says (power + d6) - (difficulty + 6) = effort. That skews the whole result an every roll made by five points and not in the player's direction. That's half the chart.

I kind of heavily modify my GM chart, so its not noticable to me. I can use a highlight with the correction. It could be distracting or completely game crashing to a newbie.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
ICONS: Gamemaster Screen
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Behind the Walls • A World of Adventure for Fate Core
Publisher: Evil Hat Productions, LLC
by andrew b. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/03/2015 15:08:22

I have to agree with most of what Winston C. has posted before me, but I would have to add more.

This series of 'A World of Adventure for Fate Core' books are all just frame works. They arent meant to be used as the whole shabang. I remember a lot of people were upset with the superhero one they released not long ago along this same basis. These are supposed to be teasers to get your own story going. They are 'This is a neat thing we did with Fate Core, if you like it, use it' stuff.

I would agree that such a story centered on a prison would not appeal to me unless a zombie apocalypse or something even more grindhouse was knocking on the gates outside. I also see why they mentioned avoiding certain tropes, because these are the tired old goings on which make it in every prison type movie and color your perceptions. So this product kind of says... 'while that stuff is going on, the real story is here... after all of that.' We are talking about Fate Core, which is inheriently cinematic so we have the flexibility for such.

This isnt as cool as The Secret of Cats (definite 5), but it isnt hard to imagine an interesting way to use this kind of scenario. The easiest way to show how this could all be very useful is to picture an episode of 'The Walking Dead' and that prison they encountered. This could act as the map and prisoner social structure before everything fell apart. I know, this is supposed to be the fifties, but in the deep south a lot of stuff can look like it came from the fifties.

Do not pass any of this series. They are all solid books and this one is no exception. It all adds up together with other Fate based material. Imagine using this scene within the Dresdenverse.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Behind the Walls • A World of Adventure for Fate Core
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Silent Legions
Publisher: Sine Nomine Publishing
by andrew b. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/01/2015 18:30:20

I cannot believe no one has written a review on this book yet.

First off some background. Sine Nomine Publishing has released some very high quality works. They generally favor an old school D&D mechanic to thier books, which makes them easy to understand. No complicated and totally new lists of rules or anything like that. If you remember the basics of first edition D&D then you know the basics of this companies releases. Instead of giving you a system and just a setting, which almost any starting level rpg game book does, the Sine Nomine Publishing way is to lighten up on the established setting and simply pave the way before you with lists of everything you could need to sustain a long term 'sandbox' campaign. This is how Stars Without Numbers and other core books have been laid out.

Now what are the advantages of such a strategy. Instead of a complicated, detailed, or unique system taking up half the text which you have to puzzle through you can, with the right background, just pick this up and play. This means this system easily translates to M&M or even something more abstract, like ICONS, pretty easily. Then instead of having to read tons of material to glean whatever gems you might use for your own story, you can use the bulk of the material to roll up or chose practically on the fly from a viritual tool kit of Lovecroftian tropes. Isn't that brilliant?

This book has the general premesis, the very simple rules with some specific mechanics like Madness, Deleria, and Sorcery, everything you need to build your own Lovecroft-style Mythos, general setting Tags, Cult assets, a nice little Bestiary. How many times has someone in game described a tongued puff-ball headed monstrocity or made that buzzing sound and someone in the group shouts matter-of-factly "Mi-Go". With this book you never have to worry about that happening. Your games can still carry the gravity of dark cosmic themes but make them your own with plenty of support to help you get started and keep the momentum of the story running. You could not find a better resource for this kind of genre game than this one.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Silent Legions
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Modernity (Fate Edition)
Publisher: Wistful Tiger
by andrew b. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/27/2014 22:00:22

I bought this product for the original $19.99 price tag. It was kind of steep, but it seemed to have a lot of what I wanted and seemed to have a very slick, professional presentation. Which were all good reasons to purchase this product. Now this is a solid product. It has a definite Wizards of the Coast quality. It expands the Fate Core rules a bit. It is loaded with a wonderfully almost World of Darkness-esque quality. This is a very interesting mix.

Now for the negative, which will explain why I ranked this only a 3 of 5. If you own Fate Core, if this product interests you you probably have it, this book is a very large republishing of the Fate Core rules. Now for $20, this means half of the price I paid was for rules I already have with a few terms refurbished. Now for $10, others posting behind me can just assume they got that half for free and the price they paid covered exclusively the new material. So the very next post may be at least a dot higher, but for me... every time I see this product I think of that.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Modernity (Fate Edition)
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