Original review with pictures on RPG.net : https://www.rpg.net/reviews/archive/19/19139.phtml
Loke Battle Mat's "Loke Deck of Combat Twists" card deck describes itself as "150 Cards to Enhance RPG Combat Encounters" "designed to inspire and randomize events which can affect RPG encounters. You can use these cards to help plan, or draw randomly during live play." The deck consists of four categories of cards: Targeting, Environment, Wild Magic, and Tactics. Targeting cards select a target, where they've been hit, and what effect the hit had. Environment cards "are a range of perlious events which can influence and affect combat." Wild Magic are magical side effects, leaning on the whimsical side. Tactics "describe how the enemy have prepared for, or act during, the combat encounter". You can pick up these cards physically and virtually for Roll 20.
And how do you use them? Any way you want! Want to add some color to the encounter? Draw an Environment card! Not sure how the bad guys prepared? Draw a Tactics card! Unsure whom to target in the party? Draw a targeting card! Need a Wand of Wonder, miscast spell, mishievous NPC spell, or a magical trap effect? Draw a Wild Magic card!
In this review, we'll use the cards with a random encounter. Many adventures with a random encounter table will usually have a group of monsters that the party encounters — and that's it. No description of how the monsters attack, no interesting environment affecting combat. Thus, the Tactical and Environmental "Combat Twist" cards can give the GM some ideas to make combat more than just the usual "they attack".
For the random encounter, we'll use an encounter from Loke's "Wilderness Trek" random encounters PDF. The Loke random encounters are actually pretty well fleshed out, and the "Combat Twists" deck add even more memorable detail. "Wilderness Trek" was originally released as part of a KS "Wilderness Books of Modular Maps" campaign, and is now available retail as part of the "Untold Encounters" hardback and PDF on DriveThruRPG. "Untold Encounters", I should mention, also includes encounters for dungeon and towns, based on the "Dungeon Run" and "Tavern Crawl" PDFs from previous Loke KS modular maps campaigns. "Untold Encounters" is a system-agnostic supplement, with 5e support. The encounters may be used with both battle maps and "theatre of the mind" RPGs, and not all encounters revolve around combat. The encounters are well-described, and you can even select them to create your own adventure or flesh out a pre-written one.
Anyway, the wilderness encounters has you "Choosing a Wilderness Region" from arctic, desert, forest, mountains, plains, sea & shore, swamp & jungle, and wilderness boon (treasure). Once you select a region, you roll on a table to see how many encounters you receive (eg. for the forest, you may receive a "1x Forest Encounter, 1x Wilderness Boon"). You then roll d100 on the region's encounter table, then look up the encounter in the PDF's "Encounters A-Z" section. Each region has some information the GM can use (eg. forest canopies). The dungeon and town encounters work similarly. (For the town, you start with the ward, then roll on the ward's encounter table, then look up the encounter. The dungeon includes not just enemy encounters, but how to build a dungeon with traps and everything from the dungeon module books!)
So let's have an encounter, a forest encounter to be specific. We'll start in the "Wilderness Region" of forest, then go to the Forest chapter. On the "Forest Encounters" table and roll 12 on a d20 for "1x Forest Encounter; 1x Wilderness Boon". On the "Forest Encounters" table, we roll a 13, for "Carrion Moss Carpet" whose Description on the table is "Moss covering ground and tree trunks". Seems not-so-innocent enough. We then look up the encounter in the "Wilderness Encounters A-Z" section. The carrion moss carpet description starts, "Forest: This strange thick moss covers everything in this area, smothering trees, plants and any trails in a smothering deep red mossy blanket" along with a few paragraphs of text, including gameplay.
As for gameplay, "It is [Difficult] to travel through the moss and any Character without suitable protection will receive [Light] damage from repeated contact with the moss." Going back to the system-agnostic Mechanics section, we look up "Difficulty: Difficult" as "Difficult - These tasks are more likely to end in failure than success without some kind of assistance (magic, equipment, other Characters etc.)." For the "5e Mechanics" we see "Average Party Level: We will use the value of Average Party Level (APL) to help produce values based on the level of the Characters. APL assumes there are four Characters in a party and is the average value of their levels." and "Difficulty: Difficult: DC = 14 + 1/4 of APL round up". So a party of 11th level characters would have a DC of 14 + 11/4 = 17. We can also see that for Light Damage, the party would take 1d4 x 1/2 x 11 = 6d4 damage. If the number crunching is a bit much, just use your RPG's suggested difficulty check and damage rules.
Now that we have a "1x Forest Encounter" let's add a card from the "Combat Twist" deck. As said, Loke's "Combat Twists" deck includes an Environment set of cards. Randomly picking one results in "Rising Waters: The floor here is damp and littered with puddles. Any combat will disturb the groundwater further, causing a flood to rise around the combatants." Also, as said, "Combat Twists" is also system agnostic, so the GM is free to translate the description to game mechanics. We could use a modifier to the DC, or just read out the second sentence if the party fails or rolls close to the DC. That flood, by the way, could be the moss's digestive juices...
As for the "1x Wilderness Boon", the "Wilderness Boons" encounters read more like a treasure and miscellaneous items table. Some of the more interesting items include a "Cursed Violin", "Full Dining Set" and "Military Recipe Book". Let's make a roll of 15 to find... "Delicious Herbs". I guess that means we can harvest this semi-deadly moss for a something tasty. And, from the description, "Delicious Herbs: Wilderness Boon : Any suitably trained Character will [Simple] notice this collection of plants combine into a sauce that will make even a meal of warm mud delicious." Back to the "5e Mechanics" section results in "Difficulty: Simple : DC = 4 + 1/4 of APL round up", so our 11th level party makes a DC of 4 + 11/4 = 7 for lunch.
Well, now that lunch is over, let's have another encounter. 85 on the "Forest Encounters" is "The Noble Hunt". In "Wilderness Encounters A-Z" the description is "Desert, Forest, Mountain, Plains : High born and wearing yellow Carnations in their caps, this [Small] group of keen hunters [Standard Warrior NPC] ride after a [Large] pack of hounds [Standard Beast] through this area. They do not often stop for anyone and their hounds are prone to harassing smaller characters and companion animals." We'll have the hounds harass the halfling cook, and draw one of each of the "Combat Twist" cards.
As said, the "Combat Twist" cards may be used any way you like. We'll just draw one of each for inspiration (in secret), the same cards as the Combat Twist image above. "Wild Magic: Out of the Hat" and "Targeting: Get the Mage" might not apply, since the encounter doesn't have to have a mage or focus on one, yet. But "Tactics: Attack from Behind" would describe how the hounds attack the hireling cook, and "Environment: Trip Hazard" suggests the hounds stumbling into the moss or the pots and pans used for cooking. It's up to the GM to determine any penalties for both sides, as well as combat in a hazardous area. Conversely, you can describe the results of (bad) die rolls with the cards (eg. if you fail to hit or are hit, check to see if you fell in some still-living moss or stuck your foot in one of the pots or the campfire). Good luck, brave halfling.
Untold Encounters: UE is currently out of print physically. You can find it on DriveThruRPG as a PDF. Personally, for scenarios and encounters, I prefer PDF. With a PDF, you can just print out the pages you need, rather than bring along yet another book. Of course, with Loke's digital maps, you can definitely keep your PDF digitally along with your other Loke gaming materials. fyi, While the encounters (dungeon, town, wilderness) are available as the "Untold Encounters" book, you can also find the dungeon and wilderness encounters as part of the "The Dungeon - Books of Battle Mats" and "The Wilderness - Books of Battle Mats". Happy gaming!