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7th Sea Core Rulebook (Second Edition)
Publisher: Chaosium
by Marc S. M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/02/2017 20:53:25

Some context first: I never player first edition so I cannot compare it with the old material (no fanboy resistance), and I backed the kickstarter.

Now, my impressions:

After reading it for the first time, my mind wasn't able to assimilate the game system. I liked a lot because it's simplicity and because it was narrative oriented, but the change of paradigm was so strong that I didn't assumed it. It was like seeing a Lamborgini Diablo and having its keys... wow, what a car but... uuuh... will I be able to drive it?? How?? I was very afraid to use the system to my players, and also I was afraid to not knowing how to use it as a game master and doing it bad.

I also disliked the lack of equipment and description of weapons, armors and tools of the setting. I had to search what a zweihander was, and seeked videos in how it is used. I think items have a personality, too, and that may affect the story. I dind't know how to manage it.

Until two weekends ago, when I played a one shot demo as a player... and I enjoyed it a lot. I was playing an Inismore Bard trying to make his friend a reputated hero... and it was the character I enjoyed the most of all characters I ever played. EVER.

So I game mastered that same adventure to a pair of friends, with pregenerated sheets: an Eisen Krieger and the Inismore Bard. I was afraid, and I warned them that the game would be a strong change of paradigm (they are players used to Rolemaster and Dungeons and Dragons).

The result was fantastic. They enjoyed a lot the game. When oportunities were first introduced, a player asked me "wait, you're telling me I can decide what happens in the scene? Seriously?". I told them "well, if it is appropiate with the story and the narrative, yes, you can". He was overjoyed, and used it to make the narrative very interesting.

They enjoyed also the combat system. When they saw that narrating what they heroes did to overcome the brute squads gave them extra dice, they enjoyed explaining the movements of their heroes... and surprisingly, they kept on doing so forgetting to claim me the extra dice: they simply were inmersed in the narrative.

I found myself comfortable with the system, with less weight in my shoulders, rules and narrative speaking, and it was easier for me to keep the story on.

When I asked the players their impressions, they insisted in how they liked feeling part of the story, to participate in the narrative and can decide events in a scene and not only reacting at what the GM throw them. They also liked narrating themselves what they heroes did and how. They asked me for another session. They want to keep playing the adventure and the game. Yay!! ^^

Now the fear is gone. The change of paradign is still there, but I am re-reading the rules and I understand them a lot more now. And the equipment? Well, the Eisen player wore a plate armor on the chest, a panzerhand and a family shield that used to narrate how his Eisen Krieger bashed some brutes to the sea... and he didn't care that there were no rules for the shield nor the armor. And me, neither.

So, I reccomend it? It depends. Want to play simulationist? Forget this game. Want crunch? Forget this game. Want tons of pages describing how to rule everything? Forget this game. You hate FATE-like systems? Run away from this game, now.

You want light rules and share the weight of the narrative with the players? Take it. Want to be narrative? Take it. Don't care about initiave modifiers and damage reductions and calculations about how difficult is to be hitted? Take it. Do you see your players as your heroes? Take it. Do you want a system that helps to focus on the history with rules oriented on helping you instead of slowing the pace of the story? Take it.

You are warned: you will love it or you will hate it. If you remember that there is a BIG change of paradigm, things will be easier.

[5 of 5 Stars!]
7th Sea Core Rulebook (Second Edition)
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