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Only Monsters Here
by Michael P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/29/2022 15:11:45

At firrst, the biggest complaint I had about this amazing book was the artwork. But that was because I was expecting it to look like the art in The Nightmares Underneath and Nameless Grimoire, which wasn't fair. Now that I got over that gut reaction, I can say that I actually really like the art, it is whimsical, weird, and dangerous.

The exploration and hexcrawl rules are superb. They're easy to read and seem to be easy to implement.

The Monsters are as weird and dangerous as the art suggests. You won't see things like this anywhere else, which is a huge plus for me.

But the best part for me, a huge fan of TNU, is how much Johnstone Metzgar expanded that game. The amount of character options he hands to us is amazing, and each class is flavorful and interesting. (I really want to play a mutant goblin).

I gave the book 5-stars, with the understanding that at first I didn't care for the art but it won me over.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Only Monsters Here
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Dungeon Full of Monsters
by Robert G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/19/2022 11:11:50

I like Dungeon Full of Monsters. I like megadungeons. The gist of it is, you have a mountain full of megadungeon goodness, and depending on where the characters enter, you end up in various levels composed of a group of maps which are random in their placement.

This is handy as the sections are each their own mini-dungeon with their own theme and such, and are very easy to prepare in a few minutes as the dungeons are often about 2-3 pages. My players and I are enjoying it.

I currently run this online and have one constant irritant with it though. The maps are stretched or otherwise not a regular grid. When you set the grid, the area you set will be fine...then you will notice how as the map progresses from that spot, your grid stops overlapping and you have map lines everywhere. On some maps, you will have multiple scaled grids on the same map portion ie regular squares then a secion of about 70% scale for one area of the map.

For theater of the mind style play, this is fine, but if you go through the trouble of making a book of PC maps, I'm not quite sure why you would stretch your maps and make the squares uneven.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Dungeon Full of Monsters
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The Nightmares Underneath Free Edition
by Atlictoatl C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/27/2021 11:53:18

A previous review suggested that the mechanics of the professions of The Nightmares Underneath were uninteresting, which utterly confounds me. In contrast, I find them to be a joy to play and run. They're quite well constructed, and employ elements of both OSR design and Powered by the Apocalypse design. Characters are fashioned to be hyper-competent at what they are meant to do, and yet the majority of them are simple enough to fit on one page of rules and description.

As an example, Thieves (which was mentioned negatively in that other review) will always find what is hidden if they spend a turn searching and are in an environment of their level or lower. If they search in a dungeon of higher level than they are, they will always be at least 2x as good as it as other characters, and if they quickly search an area in any environment (instead of taking a full turn), they search as other characters do (though they are still likely to be better at it, because of their probably-high Dexterity score). Additionally, they have four customizable options at L1 which give them Advantage on rolls related to being a Burglar, Con Artist, Mastermind, or Guild Thief, and they get +level bonuses to being stealthy, to initiative, and to rolls related to a majority of thief activities.

Fighters inflict bonus damage on physical attacks (as opposed to magical attacks) whether they hit or miss on their attack roll, get a bonus to low HP when they join a fight or press an attack, add their level to physical attacks and intimidation rolls, and choose between 5 martial styles that help to broadly define what type of fighter they are (uses retainers, high initiative, fights with a partner, wears heavy armor, fights unarmed).

These character archetypes are designed to do their thing well, to help focus and determine play. Other systems of the game provide additional color and background to the characters. For instance, I make heavy use of the random equipment package tables during character generation in my games, because they provide rich, unexpected color to the PCs. Ranging from the mundane ("you have a brand-new sword, a lantern and a flask of oil, a set of tools for the profession of your choice, and a recent personal tragedy that you are trying not to dwell on") to the fantastic ("you have a pistol that spits forth the concentrated fury of a dead age, long buried and forgotten; it never needs to be reloaded"), the equipment is evocative and begs for additional questions to be asked of the player, in the style of a Powered by the Apocalypse game. For the former result, taken from the table for characters of the Middle Classes, I want to hear more about why the sword is brand-new, and we can uncover more about the personal tragedy in play. For the latter result, which is what you get if you roll a '3' on 3d6 on the table for the Wretched and the Lost (the penniless, prisoners, untouchables) there's clearly a tale to be told on how the PC came by such an object. An entire campaign could be constructed around that character and object.

These are just a few examples of how masterfully and colorfully player characters are treated in this game. Dungeons are given new meaning and life by making them living incursions of nightmare that can pop up anywhere (the wilderness, a ship, that house over there), with an ecology that assists the GM with thematic dungeon design. Magic is democratized. Homebase villages/towns can be developed by players to confer specific mechanical benefits to the party. This is a brilliant masterpiece of a game, and it's free (though your hard-earned coin would be well spent on the gorgeous art-filled version).

Any gamer would be doing themselves a disservice to not pick this game up and play it at their table.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Nightmares Underneath Free Edition
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The Nameless Grimoire
by Jeremy A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/07/2021 10:39:10

Treat this as a toolbox. Easy to convert to any d20 game, and many d6 games as well. Lots of great ideas for spells and spellcasters.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Nameless Grimoire
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The Metamorphica Revised
by Party T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/11/2021 14:26:56

This Book has helped me create so many fun little Heroes, Monsters, and NPC's. If you are looking for a go-to to help build populace, consider this one of the best encyclopedias to have on your shelf. It takes a minute rolling out a creation but youll start to have a lot of fun when putting it together. Strongly consider using this to build first before you play. There are lots of tables and abilities that are too time consuming to read and put together on the fly during game time.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Metamorphica Revised
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Space Wurm vs. Moonicorn
by Jeremy A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/07/2021 09:24:42

Wow. Haven't playtested, but design-wise, this is trippy and amazing!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Space Wurm vs. Moonicorn
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The Metamorphica Revised
by Jeremy P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/21/2020 08:14:29

While using random tables in role-playing games and war-games is a matter of preference, and not all games allow for random shifts of power, for those who use or allow them, this is a must-have book. Game Masters will have to put in some effort to establish rules for many of the mutations/powers presented due to the system agnostic nature of the book. Despite that, most of the mutations/powers are strange characteristics designed to offer more in the way of role-playing than raw game mechanics. For example, something like Backwards Body Parts would not require any special rules to cover it, compared to Sonic Blast which would be be treated as a form of attack. Even if a group has no interest in using random mutations and superpowers as part of character-creation, Game Masters would be surprise by the number of useful lists available. For example, the supernatural attributes, Demonic Phenomena, Taboo (also great for magic curses or acts of spiritual atonement) and Telltale, can be used to enhance the eeriness of horror or surreal settings. There are a ton of ideas buried within the text and tables to mine with this book. Most of all, GMs are not obligated to use the book "as is"; if the game rules you are using already feature similar content, the rules can override the book. Or, if you don't like certain descriptions, you can change them outright. You get a fair amount of page margin to write short notes, and you also get a few blank pages at the end to make longer notes.

While the original edition, as a file, is free and is good in its own right, the Revised edition is an all around better book due to all the added content and the better layout. The enhanced layout makes it like a dictionary when looking for desired content. For example, full-page black & white images are used to visually divide each section, appearing as thin black lines when the book is closed, along with edge index markers to show you what section you are on, which appear as thick black bars when the book is closed. Like a dictionary, the Mutation Descriptions section includes the category and alphabetical listing on the top margins of each page. As great as the indexing is, you will still find some entries really useful enough to add your own sticky tabs to them.

Buyers should also be mindful that the book contains a number of mutations of a sexually-related nature that would get really awkward when used carelessly around certain players.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Metamorphica Revised
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The Nightmares Underneath Free Edition
by Érico C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/19/2020 13:24:32

I loved the idea and the setting, but I couldn't care less about most of the professions and their mechanics. Between an assassin and a thief, I would take the first always! Some of them do the same things with little difference.

If there is a second edition, I suggest to make the professions more interesting.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
The Nightmares Underneath Free Edition
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The Metamorphica Revised
by Robin C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/10/2019 22:01:42

This book is a must have in any RPG library irrespective of system. An astonishing range of possilibities of body mutations is covered with simple mechanics for their section. Read any page and the quality of parced detail is simply amazing. A reference work that also is a pleasure to read. Highly recommended.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Metamorphica Revised
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The Caves of Moreau County
by Chris B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/30/2019 15:23:12

This is another wonderful supplement by Johnstone. I especially loved the Creating the Map section.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Caves of Moreau County
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Truncheon World pdf
by Kyle M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/21/2019 11:59:35

This has become my go-to reference when GMing Dungeon World. As a bonus, they've added a few very minor things (e.g. to the section on Fronts) that make the existing design a bit clearer and easier to use.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Truncheon World pdf
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The Nightmares Underneath
by Richard R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/27/2019 14:07:10

This is a gorgeous book and a great adaptation of the basics of B/X D&D. Easy to run at the table and straightforward character-building and play rules, and the setting is absolutely fascinating.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Nightmares Underneath
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The Nameless Grimoire
by Richard R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/27/2019 13:54:42

Whether you play The Nightmares Underneath or not, this book on magic has a lot to add to any OSR or DIY game.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Nameless Grimoire
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The Metamorphica (Classic Edition)
by Spencer T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/20/2018 11:07:41

Solid selection! Ended up with a PC drinking something they definitely should not have. Next session I started rolling for his mutations and the lucky duck got wings. Second mutation just changed his arm to a different color, third one turned his arm into a scaly clawed version. Didn't do it nicely though dude was rapidly growing the bones and muscles for his wings and his arm was reshaping itself to fit its new form. Would recommend 10/10



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Metamorphica (Classic Edition)
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DW1 Lair of the Unknown
by Dave B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/16/2018 19:01:20

My friends and I had a great time with this dungeon. The twists on the familiar monsters really kept them on edge, and even though they are done with the dungeon, the troubles that they've stirred up will continue to provide challenges for them as we continue our game.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
DW1 Lair of the Unknown
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