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The Superverse (SUPERS! Revised)
Publisher: TGI
by Marc C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/20/2021 15:17:30

Wow, this book is a standout value in the realm of supers gaming. I'd give it six stars if I could.

I admit that one of my favorite aspects is the attention spent on fleshed-out normals. This is really helpful in designing my own stories and scenarios. And while 3D (5 Mooks) is not my favorite incongruity to see in such a solid mechanic, that's how Supers! RED works.

Speaking of which, the author pays diligent attention to the way Supers! RED is written. If you want to understand the game itself better, this book is a must-have.

Heck, even if you want to play army, you could engage in some light, narrative-focused, but still epic toy soldier combat using the stat blocks on pages 186-188.

No matter what part of supers gaming interests you, this book will probably speak to your interest somehow.

The author's graphical layout style, and particularly the style for character sheets, is also really easy on the eyes. Even the ads at the end are just really cool and fun. More publishers should be doing more cross-promotion like this.

A big thanks to Aldo Regalado for his hard work.

PS, just a few of my favorite illustrations from the book are found on these pages: 17, 23, 28, 55!!, 67, 72, 74!!!, 75, 77, 98, 110, 117, 147!!, 191.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Superverse (SUPERS! Revised)
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Creator Reply:
Thanks so much for your kind words, Marc! I'm beyond happy that you're enjoying the book as much as you are! I immediately went and ran down the list of your favorite illustrations. Awesome selections! Some of those are among my favorites as well! And I love that many of them are Ade's maps! I think he did an awesome job on those! All the best, Aldo
Star Strike
Publisher: Iron Crown Enterprises
by Marc C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 06/08/2021 23:53:55

This is a great deal on a full tactical space combat game. There are three different levels of gameplay you can choose from. From the rules-lite "Basic" to the more fleshed-out "Standard" and then up to "Advanced".

These rules all build on the previous level, so by the time you understand the Standard Game, you can probably handle the Advanced Game's few rules add-ons.

The Basic Game rules get you going really fast. Still there's some reasonable granularity; for example there's a "Scale" section that tells you how to play the game without a hex grid, using rulers and protractors. There's also a random pilot generation chart.

The Basic Game includes helpful examples for acceleration, turning, firing ranges, damage, etc.

There are three scenarios included for the Basic Game. The first of these is a solo-play scenario, called "The Drones Shoot Back!" in which you play a cadet on a training exercise, with simulated damage only.

The second Basic Game scenario is a two-player, square-off scenario. Fight to the finish.

The third scenario is a team free-for-all. The three scenarios seem like a logically-ordered, helpful ramp up to a better understanding of the game for everybody who will be playing.

The Standard Game builds on the Basic Game. This is appreciated. It's not a completely separate game by any stretch. It adds various new pilot characteristics, new crewmembers, more starcraft, weapons, movement and damage rules, etc.

The Standard Game includes four scenarios. These include just enough background and setup detail to feel substantial and non-generic.

There are also guidelines for designing your own scenarios. The scenario design guidelines include an interesting cost-bidding system for determining who will attack and who will defend in any given scenario (low bidder attacks; high bidder defends), and the outcome also determines how many cost-points each side can use to build their forces.

The more complex Advanced Game rules aren't a huge departure from the Standard Game rules because they build on those rules, but they include things like advanced movement (with new "attitude indicators" for vertical turns) & firing and e.g. an "Interior Flame Control Chart", plus a table showing what information your sensors were able to discover.

The advanced game also uses the pythagorean theorem to determine range to target, but then it clarifies that this is mainly if you want to do the math. You can use a chart instead. It's a forgiving game in that way. You can talk about the depth of the game, but don't ever say you were forced down that path!

Optional rules include some interesting stuff. There's electronic warfare, like cloaking and jamming of weapons and comms. There's also optional momentum movement, reverse movement, and hyperspace movement rules.

Finally you have various warhead capabilties and optional payload items like mines, space hazards, auto cannon fire, and more.

At this point you'll also find optional "cross-grain movement and firing" rules, if you find 60-degree angles too restrictive for turn increments.

Starcraft construction and cost: This is a really cool part of what is included in the game. You can build some pretty epic spacecraft.

Determine your craft's mass, volume, hull type, armor, drive capabilities, armaments, HUD, payload, comms, sensors, EW capability, deflector screens, reactor power, fuel storage, control points, crew, main computer, crew work stations, crew quarters, passenger accommodations, life support, recreational facilities, dispensary, sick bay, labs, workshops, security stations, fighter bays, shuttle/vehicle bays, cargo hold, atmospheric streamlining, landing gear, radiation shielding, and back-up systems. The designer will need to "juggle numbers" to completely fill the volume available, so it's kind of a neat exercise in that way.

There are helpful worksheets and examples given here as well. Lots of templated spacecraft are included.

Additionally you'll find computer rules, repair rules, rules for integrating with Space Master, boarding actions, etc.

The Tables and Forms book (in addition to the color counters) is also included, with quick-reference charts and resources.

The PDF is a good quality scan, it's readable and the illustrations are great. There's a bit of an homage to Star Wars on page 43. If you wanted you could probably OCR your own copy and get a reasonably searchable PDF with a few minutes of effort.

There are a few typos but nothing I've seen that's too distracting.

Overall the game is worth checking out if you are into tactical space combat and would appreciate a dial-a-crunch system, or a system that can grow more advanced along with you.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Star Strike
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XD12 Superhero System
Publisher: XD12 Games
by Marc C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/12/2021 00:46:52

If you like superhero games, GET IT! This is a great deal on an impressively solid, detailed, and organized point-build supers system. It's like a mini-Champions in that point-build sense, and also kind of similar to Supers RED! or Prowlers & Paragons.

A quick explanation about how the dice pool mechanic works:

If your superhero has for example a 6D in (whatever attribute or power) you roll 6D12 and try to beat a target number OR roll more than your opponent's D's in their defense power/attribute. So if their defense is a 2D attribute, your target to beat for each of the dice you roll is a 2. A good example in the book:

"If a spy is trying to sneak past a guard, the spy would use his Agility trait while the guard would use his Perception trait. If the spy is Agility 5D and the guard is Perception 4D, then the spy’s controller rolls five 12-sided dice with a difficulty of 4, while the guard’s controller rolls four dice with a difficulty of 5.

The spy’s controller rolls 1, 6, 7, 9, and 10 for a total of 4 success dice. The guard’s controller rolls 1, 3, 6, and 8, for a total of 2 success dice. The spy wins the contest with an effect level of (4 – 2 =) 2, and manages to get past the guard without being noticed."

There are also Fate dice and Edge dice. Fate dice can be used for automatic successes, or Power Feats, in which a power can be used to simulate another power. For example, using a water blast from below to lower someone to safety, as a substitute for telekinesis. In other games I think this would be more of a normal narrative call made by the player and GM without any thought given to the idea of simulating another power, and perhaps with a difficulty modifier thrown in. So I admit I was a little confused by the necessity of the example.

Edge dice are a dice pool meant to represent situational edges that the character can draw on: Wealth, Sleight of Hand, Streetwise, Vehicle, etc. You can expend edges when needed, but must stay under the campaign power level dice cap.

Combat is abstracted into "spaces" of about 30 feet across (XYZ), rather than ranged by grid units. If someone is in your character's space, you can make a touch or melee attack on them without taking a movement action. A movement action can go the distance of one space.

Melee, mental, ranged, and touch attacks are handled slightly differently.

You can defend with powers as well as attack with them. Damage subtracts 1D per point of effect level (see example above), for example taking a character's Fortitude from 2D to 1D.

Characters can be rendered catatonic, critically wounded, knocked out, stunned, traumatized, wounded, and thrown back. They can be harmed by Environmental Damage, including Deprivation, Falling, Horror/Insanity, Pressure/Vacuum, Radiation, Toxins, and Disease.

Character creation runs in power tiers, from "Human" with a max trait of 3D and 30 character creation dice, to "Ultrahuman" with a max trait of 12D (roll 12 of your D12 dice, please) and 120 character creation dice. The default level is "Superhuman" with 9D per-trait max, and 90 character creation dice.

Characters can also take a certain number of subplot dice per level, effectively giving your character a background-disadvantage in exchange for more creation points to spend.

Attributes: "Every character has nine primary attributes and three derived attributes. The primary attributes are Agility, Ego, Empathy, Fortitude, Intelligence, Perception, Prowess, Reflexes, and Strength." Prowess is the basic combat skill.

Luck determines the number of extra auto-success dice that can be drawn on as needed throughout a single gaming session. The GM can give out more luck during a session as a player activates their character's subplots and in a couple of other circumstances as well.

Powers can be purchased with "Boosters" and "Limiters" applied to increase or limit each power, in exchange for a difference in the points used to purchase the power. A Booster is an interesting concept; with a Booster, a power could affect something that the power normally couldn't affect, for example, or be loaned out to other characters.

In addition to the listings containing of all the powers, there are helpful lists of both Boosters and Limiters, which promise to make character builds an interesting creative exercise. There's some numerical granularity too; you can also end up spending 7.5D points on a power, for example.

The various powers come with a good number of tables which help explain the effects and levels of the powers. For example, if the character wants to purchase the Immunity power, they need to consult the table to define the group they want to be immune to:

Immunity Pathogen Groups:

Bacteria Poisons Nanites Radiation Parasites Toxins Venoms Viruses Xenobiotics

...or they can spend an additional 2D for "all groups" immunity.

Powers are fun to read about, too, for example "Radio Sense" includes descriptions of the "Jammer" booster and "Transceiver" booster. Hopefully the character is FCC licensed, at least.

(I'm really surprised and impressed by all the detail as I write this out--this game is really well thought out)

The subplot descriptions (negative aspects of your character's story with which you purchase creation points) are also really nice to see in general, whether you're playing a game or not. They're interesting to read and consider.

The character sheet is well-organized and detailed, and I think it illustrates the game's reasonable compromise between simplicity and crunch, mechanic and narrative.

There's a sample hero and a sample villain, and a nice Gallery of Rogues, including 8 different characters. It's enough to help figure out the system.

Character advancement is included, in both experience and reputation.

There are additional aspects of the game that apply only to supervillains, like Fiat dice, along with instructions for their use. Some good GM notes on using villains as well.

Toward the end of the book you'll also find a reasonably fleshed-out sample setting, an example of gameplay that is EIGHT PAGES LONG, AND IN TWO COLUMNS (this is amazing and helpful, congrats to the author on this feat), which covers Experience and Reputation advancement as well.

The book closes off with a couple of pages of quick-reference charts, an index, and an afterword.

XD12SS is apparently a side project the author has been working on for ten years--and I have to say it's a terrific outcome.

Kudos to Matt for producing this really solid supers game. I look forward to diving in further.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
XD12 Superhero System
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F.o.r.c.e.
Publisher: Fantasy Games Unlimited
by Marc C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/11/2021 14:52:33

The art by Jeff Dee is fantastic. The setting is clearly laid out and the adventure is detailed and fun. Includes color counters. Thanks to the publisher for making this classic title available.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
F.o.r.c.e.
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Agents of S.W.I.N.G.
Publisher: Postmortem Studios
by Marc C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/07/2021 00:30:47

Wow! This book is packed with detail that helped me understand FATE better. Plenty of examples and narrative guidance as well. The layout and graphics may not be the best you've ever seen, but the 340+ pages here are extremely generous with more than everything you'd need to play.

The broader genre information and history (Ch. 11--The Years) is generically useful as well. It could benefit any spy or cold war game you want to run.

Pre-gens galore, many of them resembling personalities you already know. I love the illustration for Number 8 on page 248!

There are gobs of stunts to pick from too, from "Army of One" to "Minions" to "Prototype Vehicle" and "Sceptic's Ear"...oh and Strange Stunts, like "Astral Travel" and "Psychokinesis"..."Super Speed"..."Super Strength"...basically this game is ALSO A SUPERS GAME if you want it to be, you read that right. It's fun to read about the stunts and imagine various plots and scenarios.

Run anything from French Connection to When Eight Bells Toll to Austin Powers. Give Gene Hackman a cape if you want, or cause Patrick McGoohan to turn into TV's own Incredible Hulk. Helpful GM information abounds as well. Big thanks to the publisher.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Agents of S.W.I.N.G.
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Spacemaster 2nd Edition GM Book
Publisher: Iron Crown Enterprises
by Marc C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/07/2021 00:14:51

At this price a NO-BRAINER purchase. The cover may not look as good as the combined edition with a kid shooting a laser pistol, but the interior is the same and contains tons of neat illustrations, charts, and helpful gaming information. Recommended for sci-fi gamers.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Spacemaster 2nd Edition GM Book
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Spacemaster 2nd Edition Player Book
Publisher: Iron Crown Enterprises
by Marc C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/07/2021 00:14:08

A neat book at a very reasonable cost. The cover may not look as good as the combined edition with a kid shooting a laser pistol, but the interior is the same and contains tons of neat illustrations and information. Recommended for sci-fi gamers.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Spacemaster 2nd Edition Player Book
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Coyote Trail: More Trails
Publisher: Precis Intermedia
by Marc C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/07/2021 00:12:01

This is a great supplement for all of GDi, not just Coyote Trails. You can build sniper-type characters or enhance firearms combat using the optional advanced combat action rules here. They include: Precision Ranged Attacks, Precision Damage, 2D6 Head Damage Chart, Random Hit Location chart with alternates for punching and kicking, Cover Modifiers, and modifiers for bracing (a firearm), silhouetted targets, and off-hand shooting. Oh, and a table of difficulty levels for detecting gunshots. All of these would seem to work great in modern or even future settings with little or no modification. Thanks to the publisher.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Coyote Trail: More Trails
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Dogs of W*A*R
Publisher: Garnett Elliott
by Marc C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/10/2021 00:32:12

Dogs of WAR is an '80s action & adventure setting book for the author's Everywhen system.

Inspired by movies from Blue Thunder to True Lies, TV shows from Airwolf to Tour of Duty, and various other media, the supplement gives players and GMs plenty to work from in building up an adventure.

I had previously picked up the older version of Dogs of WAR and thought this one was a standalone upgrade to that, but this book does require that you purchse Everywhen. Everywhen is a simple and effective RPG in its own right, and is worth checking out. The core mechanic is very simple to understand.

Back to Dogs of WAR, the character creation summary/overview in this book is much appreciated and, in my opinion, accelerates the process of getting a game up and running.

The author includes plenty of examples, tips, and contextual information where appropriate, which is also helpful.

The default setting and group identity seems pretty optional--your characters can be "war dogs" without being Dogs of WAR, in other words.

There are tons of career specializations, backgrounds, and other characterization tools in the book which are very welcome. "Cleaner" was one specialization that I'd forgotten about, from all those old spy action movies. It was nice to see these little details in the book.

Regarding equipment and weaponry, the author clearly tried to walk a fine line--on the one hand, yes, your character can automatically have the gun or gadget you want them to have. Done. On the other hand, you want a weapons table, right? OK, here you go--there are some additional details given for a variety of weapons.

Vehicles are included as well. Even a gyrocopter for Cmdr. Bond.

Setting and Sample Missions: The provided setting details are helpful and the sample missions offer a lot of variety.

While each setting is accompanied by an illustration, one thing I'd love to see in future books is a simple map or two. For example, a rough map of the area around the Nazi U-boat, or a basic plan of the Daniel Streib building or Stony Mountain Facility. Still, it might be fun for a GM to draw these out.

Finally, Alternative Settings are offered which, while not super-detailed, give some idea of the versatility of the setting. For example, "The Tomorrow Project" references Twilight:2000 and The Morrow Project RPG and gives some rough idea to seed one's imagination with a basic setting and world. It's nothing very detailed but it's really well-appreciated by those of us who spent time in those fictional worlds in the past.

Just a quick note: In the Everywhen core book, the author provides directions for using different dice, to the player's taste. For example, while the regular mechanic is based on 2d6, you can use 3d6 or 2d10 or 2d12 and consult a simple table to see the equivalent failure/success target numbers. I thought this was a really nice addition.

To summarize: If you like the setting, the book is well worth the cost. The Everywhen RPG core book is worth picking up as well (and necessary to play this setting book) and it also rounds out the Dogs of WAR setting--is your simple patrol boat not enough? Turn to Everywhen and outfit your Akula class sub! Etc.

I'd like to thank the author, Simon, for publishing this book and look forward to exploring the system more.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Dogs of W*A*R
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Stormrift RPG
Publisher: Precis Intermedia
by Marc C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/17/2021 22:32:16

Stormrift is a really impressive RPG package in a book. You get more than enough story and system detail to fire the imagination. Also I get the feeling that it would be really, really easy to play kaiju-type games with this book, because some of the creatures are huge and literally named things like "Kajii" which I hope wasn't a coincidence!

GenreDiversion 3E is really simple to use but also has a reasonable amount of crunch to it. You'll find a lot of charts and values for characters, creatures, and vehicles, but the book also includes a lot of helpful examples to aid new players and GMs.

This is a terrific value in a fun product that can easily get the imagination going. Thanks to the publisher.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Stormrift RPG
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Creator Reply:
Thanks for taking the time to add your thoughts.
HardNova 2 Revised & Expanded
Publisher: Precis Intermedia
by Marc C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/03/2021 17:48:08

This is a terrific deal on a space RPG. It is really well-designed and pleasant to read. There are tons of extras included, like a lot of different pre-gen character templates you can use.

If you love space RPGs, pick this one up for sure. If you are a beginner to space RPGs, you might like the way this game has all the batteries included.

The publisher has also made it clear that you can use their newer genereDiversion 3E system with this game, making the gameplay even easier on the GM and players. It's also less of a deadly system.

Finally I'll just mention that I loved seeing that there's an included scenario which is basically Disney's "Black Hole" with the names changed. It was a lot of fun to imagine my Sligg (amorphous blob) character playing a role in the plot.

The publisher also sells HardNova II printable character standees and there are some additional free downloads on their website.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
HardNova 2 Revised & Expanded
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Justice Velocity
Publisher: Polyhedra
by Marc C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/22/2021 22:40:34

This is a really great book if you are looking to keep your roleplaying light and fast, focusing on the action. I have the hard copy (via Kickstarter) and the PDF.

While it is indeed rules-light compared to a lot of heavier games, there is enough detail in the mechanics of the system to help you account for various details that might come up. For example, in driving there are four different levels of drift. The equipment list has this epic combo of "silencer," "cool shades," and "brain pills" right next to each other. And there are tips on creating new weapons, abilities, and enemies as well.

The book is also really good at teaching you how to use the system flexibly. The author anticipates some issues that might come up, and either demonstrates how to improvise through them, or provides examples, or adaptable templates.

Finally I appreciated that there was plenty of info for new GMs, even including a couple paragraphs on people bringing their phones to a game session. It's helpful to see this kind of thing--a mark of quality in my opinion.

Big thanks to the publisher and I hope they will release some supplements in the future, and also that space game that looks to be in alpha right now! Exciting stuff.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Justice Velocity
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EarthAD.2 Expanded RPG
Publisher: Precis Intermedia
by Marc C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/25/2020 14:03:59

This is a really incredible deal for a full RPG with tons of extras. I am using EarthAD.2 to enhance a campaign in the Twighlight:2000 universe, and it has given me a lot of creative ideas that I'm excited to integrate. The system is easy to learn and there is a lot of support, as well.

Not only does the book have a page full of guidelines for conversions from other RPG systems, but the RPG itself uses GDi, so you can easily combine EarthAD.2 with the other GDi games. For example you could integrate HardNova II races, characters, or spaceships for a First Contact campaign, or use the Forts rules from Colonial Record to make various post-apocalyptic shelters, barricades, castles, or armies.

A big Thank You to Precis for releasing this title.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
EarthAD.2 Expanded RPG
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SUPERS Revised Edition
Publisher: HAZARD Studio
by Marc C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/25/2020 13:09:17

This is a terrific RPG with a lot of value inside. Others have described the system better than I have, so I'll just say that it's worth the cost and easy to learn. It rewards narrative-based gameplay and a good amount of supplements and third-party characters are available. Search & Destroy is probably my favorite supplement so far. If you browse the ProBoards forum you can also find a lot of popular heroes and villains as pre-gens, along with other content. A big thanks to the authors for making Supers! RED available.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
SUPERS Revised Edition
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Stranger Stuff: Back to School (TinyD6)
Publisher: Fat Goblin Games
by Marc C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/23/2020 19:02:29

Big thumbs-up. I bought it for some RPG entertainment aimed at grade-schoolers. Was not disappointed. I can tell that we have some winner plots on our hands here! And I love that there is the idea of an advantage to the kids who do their homework. This is a terrific supplement and the design is really attractive. The color evokes a lot of fond memories. Thanks to the publisher.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Stranger Stuff: Back to School (TinyD6)
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