If you have not yet picked up a copy of Arcana Rising, you are missing out!
The system is very familiar if you have picked up Hulks and Horrors or have ever played in any OGL game. With a quick glance at the game any goodly DM can start an AR game with their group in short order. The system is familiar as a comfortable set of gloves for any old school DM and the changes made to create a distinct flavor of modern day with the wonders of magic are logical and intuitive.
The book is written in John Berry's normal style. It is clear and engaging peppered with wit. It covers all of the bases a good DM needs and everything a new gamer needs if this is the very first RPG book they happen upon.
The illustrations keep with the Old School RPG feel and remind me of the wonderment I felt as a teenager picking up the newest AD&D books in the 1980's.
The spells and magic hold many a surprise for any gamer. The system is both new and different without moving so far from old standards that would make it difficult to understand.
All in all I must say that AR is yet another mind blowing experience from John Berry who is quickly becoming my favorite author of all things RPG. Pick it up and I guarantee you will not be disappointed.
[5 of 5 Stars!]