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Spycraft 2.0 Rulebook - Second Printing $19.95 $15.96
Publisher: Crafty Games
by Michael M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/30/2006 14:20:12

Review: Spycraft 2.0 Second Printing {PDF} US$ 24.95. 497 pages. 94 MB zipped, 160 MB unzipped.

Since the first edition of Spycraft and its Shadowforce Archer setting, many fans have been clamoring for PDF copies of the Spycraft books, only to run into AEG's no PDF's policy. While we're waiting for the Spycraft 2.0 Second Printing, Hardcover (August), Crafty Games, new owners of the Spycraft line, have decided to dip into the PDF pool with that same product, offered in electronic form.

This review only deals with the changes made between the Spycraft 2.0 Second Printing {PDF} and the first printing of the Spycraft 2.0 core rulebook.

Chapter 4: Gear. I'm putting this section first because, if you're like me, it was your number one concern. The most common complaint about the first printing of the Spycraft 2.0 hardcover, was, that using the gear section was a headache inducing trial of back and forth page-flipping between sections, in order to track down the information you needed on any particular item.

Well, put your mind at ease, the PDF gets it right. The gear section begins with an explanation of the terms used in the following table-columns. The invaluable table 4.7: Pick Tables, on page 223, gives you a flip-to-it breakdown of each pick category, by table and page number. Each gear pick table that follows includes all the abbreviated information you will need about any particular gear pick...sorted by caliber!

Now, you can calmly scan across the columns and copy your pick's particulars unto your character sheet without having to turn the page even once. Included in the header of each gear table is the page number where you will find further paragraph-style detail about that table's pick category.

Rulings & Errata: Remember that monstrous thread in Control Transmissions on the AEG forums? Yeah, that one. Well all the questions, clarifications, weird rules quirks, complaints, Morgenstern's 'yeah, that's not how this is supposed to work, use this for now' rulings; have been absorbed, distilled and folded into this PDF and I assume the forthcoming second printing of the hardcover. As far as I can tell, they only missed two things. The Sleuth is still trying to trick his victims instead of tiring them and vehicles are a tiny bit confused concerning the whole firm-point/hard-point distinction (already clarified in the single page second printing errata found on the official web page).

The Hacker? Pwns all your base. 2-handed grip on 1-handed weapons? Works. Desert Eagles? They're in there.Tanks being owned by AP handguns? Not unless those bullets have a 5 foot blast-increment and are fired from a howitzer. In short, Crafty Games has polished all the rough edges off of this particular jewel.

Bookmarks: Excellent. Makes navigating through this 500 page monster a breeze. A pleasant surprise, all the sidebars in each section have their very own bookmark. My favourite bookmarks are; +Diagrams, +Feat Tree Diagrams, +Tables, and +Sheets. Those bookmarks are the last four and will probably get the most use, as they include an expanded listing of each of those categories (frex: the Blast Diagram is a sub-bookmark under +Diagrams).

Bottom Line: This PDF is not meant for printing (at 497 full color pages, cost would be prohibitive). It is a useful tool for those of us who like having the functionality of a properly produced electronic copy of a hardcover book. Crafty Games, in my opinion, has done a great job with Spycraft 2.0 Second Printing {PDF} and I feel comfortable recommending this purchase. I look forward to further offerings from the new company.

[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Spycraft 2.0 Rulebook - Second Printing
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