I bought Contagion Savage Edition because I am a fanboy of the Savage Worlds system and I just love the World of Darkness setting and, at a first glance at the preview, Contagion looked like an interesting mashup of the two - by the way: why there have been so few attempts to "savage" the WoD (read: monsters as player charatcers) while we have about 200+ zombie apocalypse settings is beyond me.
First thing I read is the character creation chapter and Contagion almost exclusively relies on stock SW rules with some suggested additions taken from both Horror and Fantasy companions, which to me is a good thing: no need to reinvent the wheel. The only relevant exception is the introduction of Contagion Points, which are a new Derived Stat that the characters can spend to do some fancy things like alter rolls, use racial powers/edges, temporary ignore shaken/damage, and so on. Didn't try the mechanic on the field yet but sounds cool.
The character "races" available to the player are many and diverse given the modern urban setting: from the usual humans to monsters like werewolves, ghosts, and vampires (tadaaa) but also demons, angels, drows (?), elves, orcs, and goblins (WTF!?) among MANY others. Now, I can't imagine myself playing a goblin in the middle of a modern metropolis at present day but hey, I guess it's good to know that there's that chance just in case..
The other thing I am interested in when I look for a new game is the setting: Contagion's pitch is about our modern world being the theater of a secret and shadowy "good vs. evil" war between supernatural beings - demons, angels, gods, monsters, mages, and the such while our human society lies ignorant in this soon-to-be armageddon.
I don't want to risk spoilers here, so what I would say is that is intriguing enough for me to want to run games in it even though it's probably not the most original idea I've ever heard - btw I keep wondering where do those goblins stand in all this..
Said that I evaluate this product as a win considering me not being familiar with the original d20 setting and my initial idea of it being a sort of toolbox to run "Savage Worlds of Darkness" games successfully with no overhead from my part, which was exactly what caught my attention in the beginning and hoping for. I'll definitely take what I like of it - for sure some character races and the cool looking Contagion points mechanic - and ditch what I don't, simple as that.
I'll definitely keep an eye on this Savage setting, I hope some cool modules or companions will come out in the future to further explore some of the monster races and the setting, if not a full plot-point campaign.
All considered I give 4 stars to Contagion, I take 1 star out because presentation and layout are not top level, even though some of the illustrations are really good, flavour text enjoyable, and the reading experience is just fine.
Keep it up and rock on those goblins.