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Guild of Shadows Campaign Guide
by Chad W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/25/2019 22:18:35

Excellent toolbox for Savage Worlds. Guild of Shadows offers a plug'n'play city for a "Thieves World" or "Tales from the Vulgar Unicorn" sort of campaign or as a drop-in to any mid to high fantasy setting. It also adds to the mechanics of SW in a common sense way that allows you to bring things like advanced poisons, disguises, and political assassinations into your existing SW setting without having to do the math or rules lawyering yourself. I'm quite impressed. I'm currently pulling maps, NPCs, Edges & Hindrances into a series of one-shots that I run at a local game shop. Guild of Shadows & Agents of Oblivion sit next to my core rulebook so I can handle those "You want to do what?" moments. Highly recommended.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Guild of Shadows Campaign Guide
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Guild of Shadows Campaign Guide
by Stuart D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/08/2018 11:06:05

My group had a great time playing this.

I thought this was a great setting book and, with all the additional adventure material, we got a sustained and detailed campaign in the city. We played this as a standalone, with initiates working thier way up through the thieves guild. The city really felt like it came alive and it was easy enough to add small side adventures to supliment the 3 larger missions available. As a GM, I really enjoyed watching my players sitting and planning thier jobs in character and working out how best to approach each aspect. The materials in the book give enough information, the city is full of places for adventure to happen, and their are good set of prebuilt NPC's that can either help or hinder your players.

I would genuinely recommend this as great addition to your Savage Worlds library, especially if you want to play without magic and with something that would be a little more intimate for your group. Was a great fit for us and threw up some of the best adventures we've had so far.

(We played with 3 players, and that felt perfect for a small crew)



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Guild of Shadows Campaign Guide
by Adam L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/05/2016 22:14:49

Don't have much more to give than others have already written. I got into the kickstarter for this book, and I am happily surprised by this. Its solid, the new archetypes are well-balanced and evocative of the setting, and the guild itself is quite interesting with many people to interact with, following your characters' own specialities. If you enjoyed PC games like Dishonored and Thief, this game is definately for you!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Guild of Shadows Campaign Guide
by Daniel H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/13/2015 10:57:29

Overall a very cool "micro-setting." I can easily see running entire stories just in the city and guild as they are presented here.

The additional character options really give a lot of good flavor to building a group of thieves that would be hard to accomplish just using the core SWD rules. The Hindrances are great, and most of the Edges are pretty sweet as well (with a few exceptions detailed below).

Likewise, the Minions section gives you a more detailed framework for creating allies for your characters (something granted by various Edges in the setting), and is a great addition to the SWD Ally rules in this or any setting.

The setting itself is super detailed and will make it easy to write and run lots of thief-ly adventures. The art and maps are great, and help flesh the ideas presented out very well.

That said, there are a few things that jumped out as needing improvement or just not quite "there," and I'll go over them below. However, the takeaway I want to give is that this is definitely worth picking up if you want to run a campaign centered on a thieves' guild or even if you just have a thief in your fantasy(ish) games and need a guild for them to belong to. The guild could also be a great "enemy faction" in a game. Super cool stuff.

Now, on with the nit-picking! (likely of more interest to the designer than the average reader/user, but you might find my "gripes" useful)

  • Typos and missing punctuation.

Page 3, A Note About Race heading

missing period at end of last sentence "...feel free to create an elf character"

Page 5, Hinderances [sic] header

misspelled, should be Hindrances

  • Edges:

The perspective of the Edges jumps around a lot. The switch from first to second to third is somewhat clunky, in my opinion.

A couple of the combat related edges stray away from Fast, Furious, and Fun, adding a lot of minutely detailed "if-then" conditions to various aspects of combat. This isn't necessarily bad if you want a little more crunch, but it could slow things down somewhat. For example, see the Mobile Defense edge. It feels a little more like d20 style play than SW to me with its conditions and various bonus states depending on them.

The Document Forger professional edge requires the input of 3 Attribute points and at least 4 skill points as well as taking up an Edge, but gives you no bonuses to forging documents (which is handled with the Repair skill per the setting). Rather, it gives penalties to the Notice roll of the viewer of the document to recognize it as fake if they are "unfamiliar with the type of document" or "only glance at it." How often are you bothering to forge a document just to show it to someone that isn't familiar with it or won't bother looking at it? Most professional Edges grant bonuses to the character for performing an action. This Edge is just convoluted in its current form, and doesn't seem to grant much for the amount of character building resources it requires.

The Forgettable Face background edge is a good idea, but is marred by its wording. It gives a +2 bonus to all rolls related to disguise. Okay, cool. But it also gives a +2 bonus on all rolls related to being recognized...wait. Huh? It works if you assume that the meaning is "inflicts a -2 penalty to Notice rolls to recognize the character," but that's not explicitly stated. The wording could use some cleanup.

GM Section:

This whole section is rife with small formatting issues that, while they could be argued as merely stylistic choices, just don't present the material as well as they could. For example, although all of the important Wild Card NPCs are appropriately marked with the guild symbol, their names are just in the same font as the rest of the text and underlined. In most other supplements and settings, key NPCs are much more loudly announced.

Likewise the names of locations. Just a simple underline, with headers in the same font but larger. It leaves me with the feeling that I'm reading a Word document with art scattered in rather than a fully designed book.

As another example, there is a really sudden and poorly "called out" jump from notable guild figures to guild services that doesn't suit the change in the material's focus. Small header, no spacing to differentiate the sections, just straight from a NPC's stats to guild services all the sudden at the bottom of pg 31. Could use a much larger header and some space.

So yeah. Design aesthetics and a few rules quibbles aside, the whole setting is really cool and I can't wait to get some mileage out of it!



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Creator Reply:
Thanks for the great review, Daniel. Here are some responses from our crunch writer... The complaint about the perspective jumping around between Edges is a reasonable one, but I\'d like to point out that the Edges in the Savage Worlds core rule book do exactly the same thing. Perhaps it didn\'t work out so well, but the intent at least was to try and capture the same sort of style/vibe as Pinnacle. Edge complexity is obviously a matter of personal preference, and Mobile Defense is certainly more complex than most Edges, but I\'d argue its complexity is about the same as Florentine (from the core rules), while Berserk (also from the core rules) is even more complex. The Edge itself was designed to fit a thematic niche (evasive defense), and I didn\'t want to use generic bonuses (such as +2 Soak); I\'ve seen several complaints about other settings reusing old Edges, and that\'s something I specifically wanted to avoid. It was pointed out that Document Forger doesn\'t give a bonus, which is correct. Instead it gives an *ability* - a character with Document Forger is \"capable of producing false documents\". Although some Professional Edges do provide a +2 bonus to certain skill checks, others (such as Holy Warrior, Gadgeteer, McGyver, etc) instead grant a new ability that most people don\'t have. That\'s why forgery doesn\'t have its own rule section (like disguise and poison). I felt it was the sort of ability that required special training, but that it was perhaps a bit too niche to require investment in a separate Knowledge skill. As far as being \"unfamiliar with the type of document\" or \"only glancing at it\" is concerned, this would obviously fall under GM discretion, but most people would only be familiar with documents they deal with regularly, and unless they\'re suspicious they will often take the document at face value. Consider the classic trope of the protagonist flashing a fake government ID (often for some obscure branch of the government) at someone they wish to question. How often does that person take the time to carefully study the ID? How often are they familiar enough with such ID to recognize a tiny mistake? The Forgettable Face bonus to \"rolls related to disguise or being recognized\" was intended to be a reference to the disguise rules, where the first roll allows someone to \"realize you\'re not who you appear to be\", and the second roll allows them to \"penetrate your disguise and identify you\". These rolls are both opposed, and the character with Forgettable Face would add a +2 bonus to their own rolls. Hope that helps, and thanks for the feedback!
Kurstwahl City Maps
by Mat G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/09/2015 15:52:58

This is a nice set of maps for a fairly large port city. The artwork is wonderful and the files are such that they could be printed out in poster size (although I haven't done that).

One thing I like is that the legend features some really interesting locations that stimulate plot hooks - for example, Occult Factotums (merchant), Victory Hall, and the Necropolis. I also laughed at a few insider names such as 'Dungeon & Dragon Adventuring Supplies' and 'Gieves and Hawkes Fine Tailoring'.

The names are European in nature, which may or may nor fit for a particular world, but they work in this context. If you're looking for a somewhat generic port city, this has enough detail to work with, but also leaves enough for the GM to add what is needed for any particular adventure.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Kurstwahl City Maps
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Rogues Hall of Fame (Savage Worlds)
by Johnny J. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/09/2015 15:36:46

This PDF provides an interesting set of 27 rogue-ish NPCs for Savage Worlds. It's somewhat heavy on historical English figures such as Dick Turpin, Guy Fawkes, Jack the Ripper, and more, but it also has others such as DB Cooper, Ned Kelly, and even Aladdin. It also includes Robin Hood and his band, which could be used for an entire campaign on their own.

The stats seem accurate, although some Edges are from 'Guild of Shadows' (which is a great SW add-on), although the name of the Edge gives a somewhat good idea of how they work, so these NPCs are still usable even if you don't have the Guild of Shadows book.

Bottom line - if you're looking for stats for historic rogues, then this is definitely for you. If not, move on.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Rogues Hall of Fame (Savage Worlds)
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Guild of Shadows Campaign Guide
by Matthew S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/09/2015 13:10:27

An excellent book. Provides enough Edges and Hindrances to really build up a feel of a band of thieves, each with their strengths and weaknesses, and rules for disguise and poison to give them some options. The setting for Kurstwahl is not extensively detailed but gives enough details that anyone can make it their own without much trouble. Finally, there's a small random job generator, always welcome for inspiration.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Guild of Shadows Campaign Guide
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Guild of Shadows Campaign Guide
by Diego C. L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/09/2015 06:39:13

This Campaign Guide is built like a pluggable module, it can be inserted in most medieval- and renaissance-themed worlds, fantasy or not, and adds a very special kind of flavour to the games, similar to books like the Gentleman Bastard series. Loved it.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Guild of Shadows Campaign Guide
by Shawn G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/09/2015 03:53:05

I love playing, so I'm excited to bring this to my game table



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Rogues Hall of Fame (Savage Worlds)
by Dustin S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/05/2015 20:43:04

Rogues Hall of Fame is a supplement pdf for Guild of Shadows.

Collectively it contains several historical figures, many of which are perfect for a Steampunk, Pirate, Western, or Horror campaign.

One thing you should know is that you will need to purchase Guild of Shadows in order to understand the edges and hindrances, if you are unable to find this it's still possible to swap out edges from the core book.

If you want to add historical figures such as Guy Fawkes, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Fagin (pickpocket leader from Oliver Twist) or the either collection of Robin Hood and Merry men then you should pick up this book.

I enjoyed the concept and plan to add these characters to my games.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Rogues Hall of Fame (Savage Worlds)
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