I bought this on sale, only $2 so I wasn't expecting a lot. I was intrigued by mention of simple and strategic combat and a 'powerful toolbox' for fantasy rpg adventure.
I'll just say that the description vastly overstates the content of this book.
The first 10 pages (p. 4-14) are setting material which gives a very brief overview of an entire fantasy world.
There are many classes presented, but for the most part they are only distinguished by the number of bonus points they can add to their basic stats and a single different ability. For instance a human paladin gets +2 to attack evil and undead foes, while a human warrior gets +1 to attack all foes.
I also note that for each race there are maximum ability scores listed for each gender, which seems a distasteful in 2018.
The rules then list one page of 'super abilities', including about 30 spells and another 12 special abilities. Each one of these 'super' abilities gets one line of description. This description usually neglects very much rule content.
For instance a spell 'Electric storm'. The effect is 'casts lightning on all foes for 9 MP'. no mention of range, damage, duration etc.
There is no explanation of how many of these super abilities a character should have, if they gain more over time etc. There is a tutorial section later that explains how many powers the sample charcater gets, but no guidlines beyond this.
There is then 1 page of combat rules. The 'strategic' system mentioned in the description boils down to:
- roll initiative
- make an attack by rolling a d20+bonuses - target's defence. Anything left over becomes damage.
Similar rules are provided for magic attacks and super ability attacks. Not clear what the difference is.
That's it. No rules for movement, positioning, actions in combat, anything. Just stand there whacking each other until somebody runs out of health.
Two pages of equipment is presented with prices, but no/very little explanation of mechanical effects. What's the difference between an iron sword and a steel great sword? Make it up yourself I guess.
There is no mechanic provided for task resolution outside of these very basic combat rules.
A page of monsters gives a name and one sentence description for each, but no stats or game mechanics. The GM is advised to make these up depending on the challenge they want to give their players.
There are also a few pages of what passes for adventure design, but this (again) gives a couple of examples with no mechanics listed.
TLDR: This is not a carefully crafted masterpiece or a powerful toolbox. The actual game rules as stated could fit on 2 pages. The rest consists of incredibly vague and general advice or examples which seems to refer to more mechanical content, but do not explain it.
If you are looking for a mechanically simple game for building a fantasy adventure, any of the various 'retroclones' of D&D would be better, such as Swords and Wizardry, Labyrinth Lord etc. Moreover, the basic rules sets for these games are free and far more comprehensive.