DriveThruRPG.com
Browse Categories
$ to $















Back
pixel_trans.gif
Night Shift: Veterans of the Supernatural Wars
 
$9.97 $5.98
Average Rating:4.7 / 5
Ratings Reviews Total
5 2
1 0
1 0
0 0
0 0
Night Shift: Veterans of the Supernatural Wars
Click to view
You must be logged in to rate this
pixel_trans.gif
Night Shift: Veterans of the Supernatural Wars
Publisher: Elf Lair Games
by Marvin B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/05/2020 12:13:46

I was a part of the kickstart for NIGHT SHIFT so I have had both the PDF and paper copies of the game for quite a while now. I wanted to give some impressions and some sort of review of the game.

First, the physical product. The book is actually not at all the size I expected. It’s larger than my OD&D pamphlets but not a full-size 8,5x11” size, either. It is a hardback and I think it’s 7x9”, which reminds me of Adventure! or maybe some of the Unisystem books like All Flesh Must Be Eaten (I think those were a mid-sized product). The binding seems pretty sturdy to me; I don’t know all of the publishing terms but it looks sewn from the edge view. The cover art is solid, I think, and has modern-day folks with swords and such inside what could be a castle or a chapel. Evokes for me a feel of darkness and mystery, which I assume is the intent. The font of the book is a nice and clear one, and I like the simple B&W artwork inside the book. I was a little concerned about the darkness and contrast of the art when I looked at the PDF, but in the hardback the art is all easy to see. (A similar effect in the DCC RPG rulebook, where I thought it might be hard to see but in the finished product it’s fine.) Tables are well formatted and easy to read.

Next, the topic. I have been searching for a long time to find a modern-day RPG that has the right feel to it. Call of Cthulhu is well done overall, but I prefer a d20 style system to percentile rolls and characters in CoC seem to be designed for despair and doom instead of upbeat creature-whuppin. The World of Darkness product line seemed too angsty for me (I had at one point the original and the GURPS versions and eventually the d20 Monte Cook’s WoD and none of them quite had the right feel.) The Buffy and Angel product lines are pretty solid, but for whatever reason my group likes something more D&D-like and those didn’t quite check the right boxes, either. FATE offers some options, but I don’t really enjoy FATE. My best choice up to this point has been Amazing Adventures, which comes in C&C or 5E flavors. What I wanted was a game where I could run Dresden Files and blend it with Charmed or other similar storylines, and I wanted something that was sort of D&D-like so my players could acclimate quickly to the rules and start playing right away.

The book. Night Shift is just under 300 pages of content, which to me is a great page-count. Too many pages and you get a giant tome that doesn’t work well at the table, too few pages and it’s a pamphlet. There are rules for a half-dozen class types (chosen one, psychic, save, survivor, theosophist, veteran, and witch). There are rules for supernatural or monster characters such as vampires and demons and werewolves. There are some neat rules for fate points so that characters can influence the action somewhat. There are rules for madness if I want to throw a Cthulhu type thing at my players. There are some neat GM chapters designed to make one think about campaign or adventure style. There are ideas on what types of secret societies might be hidden in the world. I feel like the one book is pretty much self contained and doesn’t string a buyer along for monster books or extras like that. (If these kinds of things come out later on I will probably buy them, but I don’t feel like I would NEED them in order to play a solid campaign.)

The OGRES game system. I have to confess that I’m not 100% sure which parts of the game mechanic are specifically OGRES, or if the whole game counts. What I see mechanically is the use of the same base stats that can be found in most “old school” style RPGs. The stat bonuses start off very B/X in flavor, but there are additional modifiers from the same stats that apply to specific types of checks. Familiar, yet expanded. There are classes that fit a modern-era game instead of a fantasy-era, and they seem to fit the major options that one would expect in a modern supernatural game. Combat is pretty “old school” in style with characters trying to overcome Armor Class as many other RPGs of this style do, and it seems like one could run combat simple and straightforward or add in some options for those who like their systems more complex. There are saving throws. Monster stat-blocks focus on stuff like AC, move, HD and are pretty short and sweet. Basically, if a person is familiar with the standard D&D-style games (various editions of D&D, C&C, AA, S&W, and so on) that person will see a lot of comfortable similarities in rules and can pick up the game quickly.

The best parts. So a lot of this stuff can be found in other games. What’s the best part about Night Shift? Well, I’ve already mentioned several things that I like, but here are a couple more: [1] The “fate points” mechanic. I liked a similar thing in Jason’s Amazing Adventures RPG but this seems more expanded and developed that his earlier rules. I look at this sort of like “inspiration” in 5E but with more options. [2] Appendix A. There is a look into “Arnesonian” combat and how Night Shift can be played with really old school rules. There are also thoughts on converting the game to an OD&D or B/X style of play. I really liked reading those parts.

Bottom line – I like Night Shift a heck of a lot more than I dislike it. I feel that it oozes atmosphere, mechanically runs smoothly with “old school” rules, and seems to be the best rules set I have found yet that fits the “modern supernatural” genre that I have found yet.

Just my two cents.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
pixel_trans.gif
Night Shift: Veterans of the Supernatural Wars
Publisher: Elf Lair Games
by Abraham F. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/02/2020 21:58:02

The OGRE System is elegant and easy to follow and is well worth looking at by itself, the fact that there was a lot of thought into the entire setting as well which makes it even better.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
pixel_trans.gif
Displaying 1 to 2 (of 2 reviews) Result Pages:  1 
pixel_trans.gif
pixel_trans.gif Back pixel_trans.gif
0 items
 Gift Certificates