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Holiday Dorastor: The Temple of Heads
by Scott S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/06/2021 19:27:40

It blew my mind. I lost my head. This deserves an extra star. Horrifyingly funny! A module that reads as well as it plays. A showcase for the Jonstown renaissance!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Holiday Dorastor: The Temple of Heads
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Cups of Clearwine
by Tom M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/06/2021 15:12:50

Firstly, a declaration. I game with the authors, and indeed was responsible for introducing Runequest to at least two of them, but I was not involved in the production of this work (not even by allowing them to pinch NPCs from my game).

This is a gazeteer to a lower middle class area of the City of Clearwine (although it could easily be adapted to any other city in a similar setting). It contains listings for 24 (25 including a visitor from the lower class area) human NPCs, one trollkin, and one wolf, and a setting with 12 buildings, including a popular wine bar.

There is 1 detailed urban adventure with political overtones to challenge the non-combat heroes, and many plot hooks for further adventures. Also useful is a listing of goods available and prices which might be paid.

The main value, to my mind, is the sense of feeling for the setting, helping your immersion in the setting, even if you never use it. And I think you will!



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cups of Clearwine
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Secrets of Dorastor
by Scott S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/06/2021 10:51:54

Where your SuperWorld characters go to die. This is a womderful product that outshines the previous Gloranthan renaissance.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Secrets of Dorastor
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Creator Reply:
Many thanks for the review, Scott, I am glad you enjoyed it. SuperWorld characters probably don't get past the Random Encounters, to be honest.
Citizens of the Lunar Empire
by Andrew L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/06/2021 09:33:20

Lovely work! Excellently illustrated and written, with lots of great ideas for games. The only downside is that not many people are likely to be running campaigns set in Glamour, so finding ways to use this suppliment will be tricky, although certainly characters can be transposed to other settings.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Citizens of the Lunar Empire
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Dream House
by Sarah H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/02/2021 18:58:37

I really enjoyed running "Dream House" for my investigators. The story is good and the scenario is well written and user friendly. "Dream House" is a creative and interesting reimagining of "The Haunting." I was really lucky, in that this scenario came out right after I ran "The Haunting" for that same group of investigators. My investigators really enjoyed this scenario and had a lot of fun playing the pregenerated characters that come with it. The scenario also comes with an additional set of mechanics that make it more fun. Also, it was cool to experience the Corbitt House from a different perspective. It's not necessary for one to have played either of these scenarios to understand or enjoy the other, but I definitely recommend playing both, just to get the different experiences.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Dream House
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A Rough Guide to Glamour
by Ian G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/26/2021 04:23:08

I bought the hardback version of A Rough Guide to Glamour and it is wonderful. I have re-read it numerous times.

I am a Glorantha newbie, but was always intrigued by the Lunars during the exposure of the years. So to me it was a no-brainer buying the book.

It is just so good. The lay-out and maps and illustrations are brilliant. It is a stunning piece of work. Also it's a delightful read - the writers' voice(s) are great - and I got a really sense of the place - plenty of creative-fuel for using Glamour in my future RQG campaigns.

The thing that comes across most in the book is THE LOVE everyone has for the material. That love is infectious.

This was my first Jonstown Compendium physical purchase and it sits very nicely next to my Guide To Glorantha and lore books. Based on the quality, it is the first of many JC purchases for me.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
A Rough Guide to Glamour
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H.P. Lovecraft's Arkham
by ALEX G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/22/2021 12:46:12

A great resource for Keepers. Gives you tons of color and background to flavour your Arkham and vacinty adventures. Gives not only a history, and lovecraftian references, but detailed descriptions of the different districts and famous locations. Includes appendices for townsfolk, both famous and general, some investigator backgrounds (arkham specific onviously) Handouts, and 4 adventures. The version I have is meant for 6 version or earlier, but is completely and easily moddable for 7th ed. A great spice rack for your Cthulhu game.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
H.P. Lovecraft's Arkham
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Spark of Life
by Sean M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/20/2021 09:41:49

I'm a moderately experienced Keeper and I ran Spark of Life for someone who had almost no experience with Call of Cthulhu or RPG's at all, the scenario took two session for a total of approximately 5 and a half hours to complete. Spark of Life is very well written, laid out and is excellent for a new or experienced player alike. I really wish there were more single investigator scenarios out there. Great scenario, well worth the cheap price tag!



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Spark of Life
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Life of Moonson, Book Two: The Freeform
by Michael H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/19/2021 16:58:16

Even though I helped contribute some of the original character development for the freeform and had some wonderful back and forth with Dario on art direction for this project I was completely overwhelmed when the premium color hardback version arrived last week. Even though I'd spent hours pouring over the PDF I was amazed how much great stuff I'd still missed including extra Dario Corallo artwork and Investigation rules to name just two out of many. This 'sneak peak' behind the curtain on how the Freeform Life of Moonson was actually run is a revelation to the complexity, creativity and anarchic sense of humor we were running with back in the mid to late nineties. it's both delightful rand immensely gratifying to discover it stands the test of time. While trying to re-create the Freeform is a non starter there's lot's in here for anyone taking a party of adventurers into the heart of Glamour, whether it's background information, fleshed out NPC backstories, titular titles for minor functionaries, potential factions and alliances and so on, all the stuff that any GM would welcome as valuable meta-data. It's also worth mentioning that your opportunity to purchase a premium color hardback edition before the new pricing structure kicks in ends July 1. I'm glad I got my copy!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Life of Moonson, Book Two: The Freeform
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Stafford Library - Heortling Mythology
by Shannon A. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 06/12/2021 04:07:01

The Book of Heortling Mythology is an amazing bit of secondary world creation that reveals a mythology that is deep and many faceted. Stafford takes the same tactic that he used in King of Sartar of offering myths from lots of different viewpoints, though it's not as refined here (likely because this book was collated from the contents of several other works, rather than being created as an original piece). Nonetheless, it's an amazing work that depicts a mythological cycle that has the depth and verisimilitude of something from a real culture.

If you want HeroQuests, they're here. If you want to understand the foundations of Orlanthi society, it's here. If you just want a good, dense volume of new myths, it's here.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Stafford Library - Heortling Mythology
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Heortlings of Sartar
by Phill K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/11/2021 13:53:33

This is a brilliant utility item, and I refer to it regularly. So many GM supplements I get and don't really use, but this is one of them. Please do one of these for Tarsh and Citizens of the Lunar Empire!



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Heortlings of Sartar
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Cthulhu Maps - Scenario Map Pack #1 - The Darkness Beneath the Hill
by Albano S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/11/2021 13:49:33

Is a very well done map, very practical. There is no much "modern" regular maps, like this ones to use in CoC or actual settings. Yes, there is millions of castles and dungeons but there is no a "library of the corner" or a supermarket (which you can find in his very affordable patreon). Now, this set of maps are for use in The Darkness beneath the Hill scenario, one include in the Doors to Darkness. This set will save you so much time. Maybe you think is pretty bright but with a filter (is what I do) you will achieve great effects. If you play in VTT (I use Foundry), this maps and others that the creator provides are perfect. He takes his time setting the lights and walls so you can import those in Foundry VTT so you will save an insane quatity of hours. Really looking forward to see how the creator evolves..



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cthulhu Maps - Scenario Map Pack #1 - The Darkness Beneath the Hill
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Six Seasons in Sartar
by Chris G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/07/2021 13:13:37

I simply cannot rate this book too highly! This should be the second book you buy after the Core RQG rulebook. Seriously. You do not even need the Bestiary or the GM's Screen pack to get stuck into this Gloranthan feast. Instead of the fully formed experienced characters of RQG, it stops off in the character background generation with teenage PCs, as was normal in earlier versions of Runequest. The players then get to roleplay their inititaion as men and women in Sartartite Orlanthi Society, and the choices they make which will lead to the big life decisions of the 1620s. On the way, we discover what Heroquesting means, family, custom, legends, the Lunar occupation and the dangers which lie around the heroes' path. There is even a dungeon to bash! It concentrates on a very primitive clan of the Colymar, so new players do not (yet) have the full range of different cults and occupations presented in the rule book. Instead, they get a much more thorough grounding in the life of regular Orlanthi, and the culture presented in 'King of Sartar'. But it is certainly not boring. Perils, mythical happenings, famous heroes and difficult choices abound. There are rules for battles and raids, for romance, childbirth and funerals. There are helpful GM hints on how to make the action more gritty, or more family friendly, depending on the needs of your group. Reviews suggesting this advocates only one play style are wide of the mark. Two absolute standout aspects are the incredibly useful rules on designing and handling NPCs, and on enlisting your players to design their own heroquests. These are useful even if you don't intend to present a fully Sartarite campaign. I am amazed that a book like this, or even this book itself, was not the second official Chaosium RQG book. I would certainly advise any budding GM to start off with it before plunging into the Smoking Ruins or Pegasus Plateau.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Six Seasons in Sartar
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Life of Moonson, Book Two: The Freeform
by Keith N. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/04/2021 07:08:15

I'm going to review both books (Part One and Two, together) These beautiful books are a triumph. They allow those who were not blessed to take part in the game a chance to glimpse some of the immense fun that can be had in a freeform game. It is difficult to know what, exactly, to review here: the game itself, the utility of the books, the enjoyment of reading it, or the presentation. For a start, what is a freeform game anyway? How can anyone judge it objectively? No one will ever know everything that happened, and some players may have enjoyed it more than others. I guess the same thing could be said about most role playing game books, but at least they are less unique events. Who can say if that was the result of the game as written and designed, or how well the players all interacted, or how well organised it was on the day, or the venue or even the weather. If it was run ten times, how well would it work each time? I am reasonably sure that the three times this game has run it has been a success. The writers would have learned some lessons from their previous games (Home of the Bold, How the West was One), and some examples of this are highlighted in the book itself. I don't think most people buying this book will be planning to run this game, and I am sure it was not put together for that purpose. A big part of the fun of this game, it seems to me, must have been some of the surprise revelations that happen at the halfway point and upset what might have seemed like a reasonably sedate political negotiations. But still, the problem of reviewing the game itself, as a game, if we can say that this book is a game, especially for me, is that I did not play in it. This style of freeform is a new art form - a cross between improv theatre, role playing games, boardgames, cosplay, soap operas, let's pretend and parlour games. They can go wrong through player action, they can be written to reduce the chance of going wrong, but how is that judged?

So, what is the point of this book? What is its' purpose? I guess it gives us poor unilluminated souls who did not get to play it a chance to enjoy imagining that we did. There is lots of fun stuff here - there are little Gloranthan jokes and references that only true Glorantha nerds will notice, there are pop culture jokes that everyone should notice, although they are certainly of their time (the 1990's) and place (I'd say they are mostly British-media influenced, such as Ul-Rika the Weather girl, but everyone will know the Bat-man, Wane Manor although the Lunar Wane jone may be lost on non-Gloranthans, or the Mask of Jhorro, ). The character write ups are joy to read: fun, detailed backstories, details on who the character knows and what he thinks of them, secrets, goals, and obvious things that need to be done. There are some parts that are duplicated, but since these would have been on seperate character sheets I can absolutely see why they should be duplicated rather than, say, have cross references all over the place. ("see page 153 of Carmanian background, see page 70 for Comrades of Yanafal tarnils.)

The rules are not clear enough for someone to just read and run this game. For example, in the Regimental Games, just turn up on time and "stadium officials will direct the action". Now, I assume that Running in Armour was some sort of Palour game, but that isn't stated anywhere. The quotas and budgets seem clear enough on a casual read through, but exactly how much income I get at a particular point in time, for example, is not clear to me on a casual read. Assassination, investigations, job interviews, senate debates, the mandate of the moon, social interaction are all covered but I think I'd need to ask lots of questions if I were to try to actually run it. I'm not sure how the coup game works. Are the rules for it are fully described by saying it works a bit like Diplomacy? I don't see this apparant lack of detail as a big problem, in some ways, because this isn't really a manual of how to run the game, but an insight into the mechanisms that work behind the scenes to drive the game. I am personally very interested in how the games-within-a-game work because I have been trying to write a freeform for more than 2 decades. It is great, for me, to see some of the logic behind the economy, for example. I'm not going to go into any detail reviewing the actual rules, but they appear to be designed with playability and fun for all the players at front of mind. It would seem very hard and probably pointless to absolutely kill off another character in the first half of the game.

Presentation is excellent. These are big, thick, beautiful books. Text is east to read and well organised, illustrations are fun and there are lots of them - almost all of them are character studies, mostly based on well known real world personalities. I like the consistent style used through out as it ties everything together. Dario Corallo must have been busy . I think having only characters, rather than scenes, or scenery, is a good choice. Freeforms are about characters interacting with each other.

Should you buy these books? This is hard for me to say. I'm a Glorantha fan who loves freeforms. I've been trying to write one for ages. I cannot think of a more target audience than me. If you are interested in deep canon Gloranthan truth, and get upset by deviations from that, this might not be for you. For one thing, it has too many aspects that are artefacts of a game. If you are really only interested in your character adventuring in a normal roleplaying adventure, and have no interest in political soap opera, then this might not be for you. If you like freeforms, if you like Glorantha, there is something in these books that you will like. The Characters book is OK to get on its own. I dont think the Freeform book by itself makes enough sense, so if you had to pick one, pick Characters.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Life of Moonson, Book Two: The Freeform
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Men of the West
by Olli-Pekka K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/03/2021 07:35:05

Even if you aren't interested in military matters. This book is a must if you want to play in the west.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Men of the West
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