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MasterBook Core PDF (Classic Reprint & 2E)

MasterBook Core PDF (Classic Reprint & 2E)


VintageCollection.pngUpdated: Now includes download of Second Edition public playtest (October 2020).

Precis Intermedia brings this classic universal roleplaying system (originally published by West End Games) back in PDF format.


The Only Rulebook You’ll Ever Need

With the MasterBook rules system, you can adventure in any game universe imaginable. Flexible and easy to learn, the MasterBook rules can be adapted to everything from science fiction to high fantasy, from pulp adventure to dark horror. The only limit to where MasterBook can take you is your imagination!

In this book, you’ll find details on creating characters, choosing skills, running combat, magic, miracles and more — everything you need to start adventuring today.

MasterBook is a master game system designed for use with published WorldBooks or settings you create yourself. You need two 10-sided dice to utilize this system. MasterDeck™ card deck is optional, but recommended (PDF is included). A physical deck of cards is available here.


  1. This scanned reprint of the classic 1994 game also includes remastered MasterDeck™ action cards in PDF format (in both black & white and color, for both single and double-sided printing) -- a $4.95 value for FREE.
  2. The public playtest version of MasterBook Second Edition (October 2020) is also included with this item.

"The emphasis here is on drama. Every rule moves the Gamemaster and Players toward making more heroic actions... MasterBook's game system is so slick... You have to play this system to believe it."
-- John J. Wick

The basics of this system started with West End Games' TORG game (now published by Ulisses Spiele) using a d20. Elements were then used to create a grittier version of the system for Shatterzone (now published by Precis Intermedia) based on 2d10. It was ultimately reworked into MasterBook's more generic/universal system that is probably about 96% compatible with Shatterzone. The mechanics for creating special effects/powers is balanced, but you can just as easily go the simpler route of adding such abilities as advantages and disadvantages. I've been working on a new edition of the rules, better clarifying aspects of it, making the organization flow more smoothly, condensing the variable results tables, and simplifying parts that don't need to be as detailed. I believe the Second Edition playtest version is much easier to understand and a littler quicker in play.

About Precis Intermedia
One of the original RPG e-publishers, award-winning Precis Intermedia is known for its diverse catalog of clear and concise games, as well as classic reprints and new editions of vintage titles.
Shatterzone | Bloodshadows | Supergame | Two-Fisted Tales | Worlds Beyond | Lair of Sword & Sorcery | Exiled in Eris | Man, Myth & Magic | HardNova 2 | Coyote Trail | Earth AD.2 | Mean Streets | Ghostories | MasterBook | Warcosm | Wee Warriors | More...


 Customers Who Bought this Title also Purchased
Reviews (3)
Discussions (2)
Customer avatar
Robert R December 01, 2020 7:28 pm UTC
Is the PDF searchable? I noticed one review saying it’s not. Has this been updated to be searchable? Contents links at least?
Customer avatar
Brett B December 01, 2020 7:55 pm UTC
It is bookmarked, but not searchable. The 2E document is searchable. If you really want a searchable version, request it via this form with proof of purchase:
Customer avatar
Robert R December 01, 2020 11:33 pm UTC
Thanks Bret. Searchable is a dealmaker. That’s why I buy PDFs when I already have a book. It’s easier especially when you’re running a game to find a particular rule. I’m going to buy the PDFs and request the searchable version. Thank you
Customer avatar
Brett B December 02, 2020 12:32 am UTC
I'll be replacing non-searchable scanned items with searchable ones over time (now that Adobe makes them more efficient), but anyone can ask for one in the meantime. Thanks.
Customer avatar
Bruce M September 08, 2014 3:25 pm UTC
Following up on the publisher feedback, I did say that the PDFs were ok on my iPad. It was my Kindle Paperwhite that didn't display them properly. I'm happy to provide screenshots if they would be of any use.
Customer avatar
Brett B September 08, 2014 3:55 pm UTC
There's probably nothing that can be done, since the Kindle uses e-ink screen technology, which is extremely limited. The scan are B&W - if they were grayscale, it would probably look better, but then the file would be huge.
Customer avatar
Brett B September 08, 2014 4:40 pm UTC
If you'd like, I'll send you a print copy for just the cost of shipping. Contact me here if interested:
Customer avatar
Robert R December 01, 2020 7:26 pm UTC
Impressive... most impressive. (said darth...)
That is a generous offer.
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Product Information
Electrum seller
Rule System(s)
Publisher Stock #
File Size:
22.77 MB
Scanned image
Scanned image
These products were created by scanning an original printed edition. Most older books are in scanned image format because original digital layout files never existed or were no longer available from the publisher.

For PDF download editions, each page has been run through Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software to attempt to decipher the printed text. The result of this OCR process is placed invisibly behind the picture of each scanned page, to allow for text searching. However, any text in a given book set on a graphical background or in handwritten fonts would most likely not be picked up by the OCR software, and is therefore not searchable. Also, a few larger books may be resampled to fit into the system, and may not have this searchable text background.

For printed books, we have performed high-resolution scans of an original hardcopy of the book. We essentially digitally re-master the book. Unfortunately, the resulting quality of these books is not as high. It's the problem of making a copy of a copy. The text is fine for reading, but illustration work starts to run dark, pixellating and/or losing shades of grey. Moiré patterns may develop in photos. We mark clearly which print titles come from scanned image books so that you can make an informed purchase decision about the quality of what you will receive.
Original electronic format
These ebooks were created from the original electronic layout files, and therefore are fully text searchable. Also, their file size tends to be smaller than scanned image books. Most newer books are in the original electronic format. Both download and print editions of such books should be high quality.
File Last Updated:
October 13, 2020
This title was added to our catalog on January 02, 2011.