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Black Chrome $20.00
Average Rating:4.7 / 5
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Black Chrome
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Johann [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/19/2024 02:34:28

I'm new to CPR (though I've been tabletop RPGing my whole life) and this is a pretty dang good book. The locations and characters are very useful (and the BC+ DLC to this book is definitely recommended) and the items add character and flair to the otherwise standard core items.

One suggestion would be to have more tables at the end. Having tables sorted by Booth (a roll table for all the Black Chrome items at booth C1, C2, C3, etc) would be super handy. Easy enough to make on your own by searching the relevant booth number in the PDF (say, searching for "C1") but having a table pre-made would be useful rather than flipping back and forth through the book or tapping my find button a bunch when my players get to the booth at say, C3.

Could be a quick DLC, even.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Black Chrome
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Faith L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/31/2023 12:09:29

This is a really great book, that extends the game nicely with more equipment.

I really appreciate that it doesn't introduce power creep - instead it offers the option of adding flexibility.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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Black Chrome
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Ehn J. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/23/2023 02:29:18

Black Chrome is Cyberpunk RED's first big gear book, and it does a lot to not only expand play, but also the world at large.

The start of the book does a good job of both explaining the concepts of night markets (A concept touched upon in the core rules) along with explaining the ease of use that this book provides in making your own. There's a helpful display showing what information is being displayed, the explanation of new key words, and even a new mechanic that we'll get into later. Before I go into anything else, of particular note with this book is the layout. Most Cyberpunk books have a similar layout, but the way that the information is provided in Black Chrome is a stand out, and really helps sell the vibe. I really can't say enough nice things about it.

The start of the book isn't the strongest, as it's the apps section. A new mechanic and something to give one's agent more use, the majority of these apps lack useful mechanics aside from a few (the trauma team one is a personal favorite). It's easy to take these as a proof of concept, but I don't see most players getting a lot of use out of these on both a flavor or mechanical level.

Cyberware is next, and we now have a whole slew of budget options for players who don't want to shell out the money or GMs who don't want to turn NPCs into loot crates. In both situations, these budget items are great additions with some fun flavor implications to the world at large. There's also some neat new additions which allow you to determine your hit points in universe through some clever workaround. There's also a little something to make bullet dodging easier for players or a nice sidestep to GMs who want to make such actions harder.

One of the larger features of the cyberware section is cyberfingers, with most of them being generally useful tools. None of them pass the mildly interesting tier for me, but for some people, that's enough. But there's no new functionality that you're missing out on if you give them a pass, and a hand full of them is a dangerous way to drain your humanity quick (something that's hard enough to hang onto with all the cool stuff above).

Fashion and Armor is one of the highlights of the book to me, both for the creativity of the gear and the art showing it off. The descriptions are all lovely, and there's quite a few new pieces of gear in here which are both mechanically interesting as well as fitting to the greater lore of the world. This book would be worth the price alone for the mimic kit and mechaman smartglove, but unique effects like shocking grapplers, being fireproof, and even holographic clothing keep everything here incredibly interesting and great for player expression.

While I don't think the general gear section lives up to fashion, that's a high bar, and the items here include some very fun new things like a 3d printer, a portable gear repair station, and even a new net arch-less drone. There's a strong mix of utility and fun items here, and while some might never see play at your tables in the hands of players, they make great items for NPCs to really help with world building.

New linear frames are next, and for most of these, I just can't validate the cost. Most are based off of the Sigma Frame's increase to 12 body, with almost all of them able to be made into internal frames. But at the cost of a beta frame, the added utility they give doesn't feel worth it to me, as each one is running 5,000 EB and doesn't feel like their additions are adding 4,000 EB worth of value. This might be the area of the book that was the most of a letdown to me, but I think it's also because there's no middle ground between 1,000 EB and 5,000 EB in value, so any improvements to a sigma frame were going to push the cost up a lot.

Vehicles are our next stop, and this is another area in which the book shines. We don't even just get cars, there's a great selection of flying vehicles here too, and this is where the new mechanic I mentioned before comes into play, nomad access. While some vehicles may not be worth the listed nomad access levels, others are more than worth it, and the art for each vehicle presents them in a fashion that makes them all seem so cool. I don't want to pick out favorites here, but let's just say a lot of starting nomads are going to be looking at the Grundy. Also a hoverboard?!

And you knew we'd eventually land here, the weapons. These are more of a mixed bag than I would have liked, but at the same time, I can also say there's more hits than misses, including items to actually use the demolitions skill (which was tragically underlooked in value in the core rulebook). For being a weapon's section, there's a ton of tricky items in here that would be more at home in a spy kit than in a holster. Melee weapons start with a few new flavors of ignoring armor (but none topping the kendachi mono three), and quite a few new fist weapons with some neat tricks to them. Thrown weapons actually get some love here too, with boomerangs and tomahawks designed specifcally for throwing.

I think the sheer variety of guns is impressive here, all of them carving out unique niches for themselves. If I'm going to be honest though, my favorite are the purposefully bad ones, the guns that are given to street level doombas who won't stand a chance again a properly armed crew. Sure, things like the pepper shaker are great for autofire, but give me an overlord handcanon any day of the week. Combination weapons are a large theme of the book, with various combinations being displayed within. None of them would outdo a focused version of one of their components though.

But we're out of gear now, and into mechanics and flavor with an explanation of the economy of the system. This right here is great for people who aren't completely up on the lore, giving a snapshot of how to play out matters of finding or creating gear. It's all just amazing as a learning tool, and a great use of pages in a book like this.

It's hard to say what my favorite part of this book is, but the night markets are absolutely top three. Fun descriptions and ideas for unique night markets along with fixers (and stats to run them) make for what shines as a culmination of everything that we've seen in this book. The fixers are fun and unique, with their personalities being given for players along with the gear they'd normally carry and even advice on how to be invited to or join their night market for asipring fixers. Another one of those 'the book is worth it for this alone' moments in a book that's full of them.

So there's plenty of gear in this book that I wouldn ever touch, and yet I'm still 100% satisfied with what was contained within. Black Chrome fits the style of Cyberpunk along with providing way more worldbuilding than I'd have expected from a gear book. This is a book for players and GMs alike, and I can't suggest it enough.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Black Chrome
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Alex B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 06/07/2023 10:51:59

Genuinely the most well made digital gaming book I've ever purchased. Due to how it is set up it allows you to click the fake internet tabs to swiftly change from one section of the book to an entirely different section without ever having to go back to the index it's ease of access is phenominal. Excellent art on everything, my favorite gun in it is the Hellocutie which looks adorable!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Black Chrome
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Nicholas V. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/18/2023 04:39:50

Clearly well thought out. Fun to read, the art is great and the writing is funny. If this is the quality of all future CPR books, that's good.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Black Chrome
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Colton L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/17/2023 09:32:56

This supplement is so cool and fun to play with on pdf format, it's layed out resembling a website and you can even click on catagories to take you to specific spots in the book! You wanna find a new vehicle in black chrome? Just hit the vehicles category, it'll take you straight to the first page of the category. Theres so much in the book. Even has night markets with fixers that run em and maps of what they look like towards the back of the book. This was a must buy for me.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Black Chrome
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Cannibal H. G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/13/2023 08:36:40

"The fashion and attitude of the Cyberpunk setting seeps through on every page, successfully hammering home the gulf between a corporate wearing nothing but holo-clothes and a nomad who can’t afford ammo and has to figure out how to shoot rocks." - Aaron Marks

Read the full CHG review here: https://cannibalhalflinggaming.com/2023/03/08/black-chrome-review/



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Black Chrome
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Alex P. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/15/2023 03:19:23

It's what CPRed needed and we now have. A great book of treats for the GM and player alike. The PDF design is great, why use the sidebar bookmarks when you can use the tabs directly from the pages, just like a real kiosk!



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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Black Chrome
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Flavio L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/08/2023 03:16:18

I'm a bit underwhelmed by the book, it has a great quantity of new stuff, that's for sure, some of them are little nice additions, like the NCPD App, or the multi jointed option for cyberlimbs, etc, but many of the most impactful features kinda ruin the game balance even more than it was. Tackling this issues (which are already pointed out in some reviews):

1- The only reason why people don't always wear a light armorjack everywhere is that it's not concealable, so if the party goes to the Glen they'll probably wear kevlar, and if a fight starts they have 4 less armor points, making combat faster and scarier. Now though even light armorjack are completely concealable with a little fee, turning everyone in the party in a bullet sponge again. 2- I think dodgin bullet is overpowered, calls for too many extra dice rolls during combat and makes it less tactical since a player who invested there can even stand in the middle of the arena and be unscathed. At least some players less combat focus or interested in different stats (the netrunner in my campaign dumped a glorious 3 in reflexes, evasion is at 12 though) still had to heavily rely on cover, making combat scarier if they couldn't find a cover in time. Now with the co-processor everyone can dodge bullets.. really, giving the chance to slow down combat through extra dice rolls was THE LAST THING the game needed.. I'm really disappointed, for what it's worth (very little, I assume) 3- A cyberware option that lets players (and mooks) fill up their armor mid combat with a single action is another really bad design choice, that aims to turn combat into a slower grind instead of making it faster and more lethal, I can't see the benefit of that option.. on youtube someone pointed out that this option was already available by RAW, through the field repair skill of the tech.. to think that a tech repairs an armor in 3 seconds mid combat while people are shooting around him was such a silly thought that I never even occured to me, I hope I'm not wrong, but anyway the option is kinda there now.

I'm still gonna buy the next expansion but I really hope in a better one next time.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
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Black Chrome
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Edward C. O. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/07/2023 18:15:56

i bought the PDF of Black Chrome, and i blame my self for getting caught up in the hype of a new chrome book. new gear and lore for 2045 and the time of the red,then i started reading the book...

TL;DR - a decent book to add more gear to your campaign, however a good chunk is either unless or WAY overpriced, what's to stop a Fixer, Techie, or Nomad to get these items? not a must have as the hype would have you believe.

longer review: i bought the pdf and started to do my inital skim, looked very promising, then i sat down and begin to read the content. the pdf is really optimized to find everything you want. however that's where the positives end with this book. first outfits, youg gotta look cool for the dark future, however this section is a bit underwhelming, i was hoping some early 2077 outfits, like proto-2077 outfits before they got it down for 2077, one the red neon jacket was there, and the trench coat is pretty cool, i appriecate the Bladerunner look. then that's it, i mean the armored corpo suits are nice, but if you did the conversions already, then it's pointless. next cyberware, i was hoping for some more selections and maybe some early tech as well, but nope. under 20 items (15 items if i remember correctly) if it was quality over quanity i understand the small selection, but again, only maybe 3 items are worth it. what's up with the hand cyberware anyways? same thing maybe 1-2 useful things.

the weapons are a mixed bag. a few amount weapons are worth their investment like weapons that have 2 modes (pistol/SMG mode, Shotgun/crossbow mode), however, Gun Mart while fun in theory, why is it exotic? if it's easily made and accessible shouldn't be readily available? it's cool seeing katanas and such, but those are just 2045 versions of 2020 weapons so nothing of note there. again, a bit underwhelming.

cars and copters are cool, i love the rust buckets and future tech cars and bikes, one point: why are cars so expensive? i read the thread on it being like New York: it's cramped that you don't want or need a car. the problem with that logic is that while yes it is cramped, how is it that you're suppose to get around? not just for transportation, night city is huge, and to my understanding public transportation isn't back up. this is one of those RAW issues where, simply hand waving it just doesn't fix the problem, it only highlights it. maybe i lack the foresight to plan for the players to pay it off, but it's really jarring nonetheless.

one thing i was really disappointed were the apps, i was hoping for more apps but while all of it is essential, i feel this should of been a DLC for the Interface RED line, not for the Black Chrome.

the lore while interesting, it isn't answering the questions of who's who. it sort of does, but doesn't at the same time. some gangs are named and fixers as well, but it feels like they are missing some details. one thing that stood out that nomads, fixers, and techies, have a chart to get items, and it's one of those, what's stopping them from making the weapons? techies are already doing that already, so it's one of those what the hell moments.

overall, this book had a lot of hype and build up behind it, and its content is milquetoast at best, underwhelming at worse. i'm not a grodnard that played CP 2020 back in the day. this game can be good but the way it's written and designed and supported, i don't know if it'll last. don't want it to be like V5: convoluted, messy, and bland.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
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Black Chrome
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Justin C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/03/2023 12:44:49

I really had hope that this book would improve the system, but somehow it's biggest impact is making it worse.

There is some good to it. Some of the items add cool functionality and character options. Some items fill niches that were sorely missing in the corebook, some are just cool flavour items that are nice to have or just funny jokes to look at. The economics section is cool, though a little short compared to the rest of the book.

However, the good items are mostly overshadowed by what takes up the vast majority of the book, which is mostly pointless items that do nothing but pad the length of the book. The weapons are all exotic weapons that don't interact at all with the existing modularity of the system and most of them don't really add much to the existing options. The vehicles are too pricy for non-nomads and don't do much for nomads beyond allowing them to get more upgrades per moto rank. Some of the cyberware options are fine, but many of them suffer by how poorly designed the max humanity mechanic is. Worst of all, nearly all the fashion items are either terrible, or just simply recreate mechanics that already existed in the core rulebook by just making them needlessly more complicated.

Beyond the options that are useless, even worse are the options that actively make the system worse. Cyberpunk Red already had an existing problem with balance. There are options that simply vastly outperform all other options which have a tendency outside of a very good group to produce the same characters over and over again. As well, the bullet dodging mechanic grinds combat to a halt and makes it much too easy to simply trivialize encounters and turn them into effectively rocket tag. For some reason, this book includes items that make all these options even better or easier to achieve, while doing nothing to improve other possible choices. Where once you had to sacrifice stat points to bullet dodge (Which nearly everyone did), now you simply need to pay an incredibly cheap amount to do it. Linear frames are now not only the most optimal piece of cyberware in the game by far, they now also carry the functionality of other cyberware at no further humanity loss and you can make them immune to EMP. The end result is that the system is an even less balanced one as a result of this book.

Overall, it's incredibly dissapointing. If this shows the direction the system will continue to develop in, I think it will ultimately fail to live up to its potential.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
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Black Chrome
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Zelda M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/02/2023 20:41:22

Absolutely amazing for what it offers.

New weapons, new clothes, new chrome, new apps for your agent, new chipware, an entire section on economics, fixers, and Night Markets, and more. Many of these items change some fundemental rules of the game that were sore spots in need of more love.

Want the ability to dodge bullets when below 8 REF or in heavier armor? There's cyberware for that. Want a self repairing subdermal cyberware equivelant for a suit? We've got that too. Better thrown weapons that use the melee skill? Yep. Better cheap starter weapons for players and NPCs? Absolutely. Want a high move hover board option in combat that nearly anyone can use? It's cheaper than a car! Speaking of cars and aircraft there are offerings for Nomads that give them far more bang for their role levels. Now you can get a car, gyro, or AV with an already installed series of upgrades. Your Nomad will thank you when it saves them so many role points!

The PDF layout is wonderful. Everything is linked, and you can quickly jump to the summary table, and back to the full item page with the click of the buy button or page number. Almost every item in the book has unique accompanying art. The writing adds so much flavor and life to each item and what it brings to the setting.

A paired free DLC download from their R. Talsorian's website goes into even further detail about linear frame appearances available in black chrome, details about what you can afford with each lifestyle, and has cheap ammunition for your players that love autofire, or just need a lot of ammo.

Altogether an absolute steal at the PDF or print price. There is something in this book for playstyles of all kinds.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Black Chrome
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by James G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/02/2023 14:29:59

Slick book, fantastic PDF design, great expansion of the core rules. Wish that the internal frame rules were more devastating (can't easily make Smasher with core Red Rules as written)and the HL was catastrophic for balance, but that's a very small gripe in a large sea of amazing content. Thanks R.Talsorian games!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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