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Ultimate Toolbox
by Ward M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/16/2010 21:20:51

"Utlimate Toolbox" published by AEG, 400 pgs. black & white. PDF format


This product consists of random lists divided into seven chapters (plus one appendix.) Each chapter covers a different aspect of campaign design. (See the free sample for a table of contents)


The good:


1) Some of the tables are quite inventive and helpful: twenty ways to describe a room other than saying "it's empty"; twenty ways to introduce the PC's that don't involve meeting a tavern; and a blank chart called 'twenty good uses for a gnome' are my favorites.


2) a relative lack of spelling errors, which is something unusual in the PDF's I have bought lately.


3) The PDF is twenty USD cheaper than the dead tree version.


The bad:


1) Each page of the PDF has a background stationery pattern, which will kill you if you try to print this book out yourself.


2) For some unexplained reason, the "How to use this chapter" page is at the end of each chapter. (It would make more sense to me if this were at the beginning of the chapter.)


The Ugly:


The PDF is four hundred pages long and has no hyperlinks. Even if it just allowed jumps from chapter to chapter, it would be better than nothing at all. Throw me a bone here!


Overall impression:


I bought this book because everyone kept telling me the sun rose and set around it. If you suffer from brain cramp or writer's block, this book is sure to jar something loose. This book isn't the center of the universe, as some people insist, but it is a very interesting book with good ideas.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Ultimate Toolbox
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Toolbox
by Bruce W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/30/2009 20:39:40

I was very disappointed in this pdf. It is very hard/impossible to select text, which was the reason I purchased it. I love the product, but the pdf version is awful.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Toolbox
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The Hidden Emperor
by Ward M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/29/2009 21:27:12

"The Hidden Emperor" Alderac Entertainment Group ($9.99 USD)


98 page pdf black-and-white with color cover. This is the last of the dual-statted d20/L5R products.


Overview: This product covers the time period from the coronation of Toturi I until the Battle of Oblivion's Gate in Rokugan. The book is broken into six chapters, each of which focuses on a different part of the period. Each chapter contains new ancestor feats, prestiege classes/paths, and adventure hooks.


Covers a very important period in the history of Rokugan, which is about 30 years before the end of the timeline in the Rokugan campaign setting book.


Likes: 1) Includes more history and details about what was going on behind the scenes in Rokugan during this turbulent period of history.


2) New feats and prestiege classes are always a good thing.


Dislikes:


1) The book is dual-statted for both d20 and L5R. You are supposed to be able to tell the difference between the two because the L5R stuff is in blue ink. Unfortunately, the book was scanned in black-and-white. The dark blue ink comes out looking exactly the same color as the rest of the text.


2) There are no bookmarks in the PDF.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Hidden Emperor
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Ultimate Toolbox
by Francisco M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/06/2009 03:35:45

I had some interest in this product since I saw a couple of good reviews at UncleBear (http://unclebear.com/?p=-
3773
) and RPG.net (htt-
p://www.rpg.net/reviews/archive/14/14296.phtml
). And being a fan of random charts and seeds for ideas, I decided to buy it.


Discarded the physical edition for having too little space for books right now, and thinking it would be more useful to have all that information in electronic format, easy to search and to reach, I bought it here, in RPGNow.


All in all, I have exactly what I was told I would find in this product. But it's pretty surprising that for 20 euros, the price of a normal book out there in RL, the only "plus" is the capability of using the search engine that every PDF reader has. No markers, no hyperlinked text, no adaptated version for reading it on a computer screen... No using all the possibilities an electronic format has. In my opinion, now that I have paid for it, 20 euros is pretty high when you have plenty of other products of random charts out there for less than 5 €.


So please, AEG and every other RPG publisher: if you are going to sell PDF version of your products, please use all the advantages the electronic format offers. Selling the PDF you sent to the printer's should be a lot more cheaper than this.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Ultimate Toolbox
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Swashbuckling Adventures
by William M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/31/2009 12:28:22

its a great mix of magic and muskets. Its very similar to what I was going to work on myself. Great campaign world. Its awesome.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Swashbuckling Adventures
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Masters of War: The L5R Companion
by Nathan R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/06/2009 11:48:58

If you are looking for very detailed information on the Crab, Lion and Unicorn Clans especially as it relates to how they wage war then this book is for you. Well written with plenty of new material and the scan is good. However, you will need access to Emerald Empire to get the full use of the book and a few other books as Alderac did not reprint anything in this book that was in other books, even books that are no longer in print.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Masters of War: The L5R Companion
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Ships and Sea Battles
by Roman P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/25/2009 08:05:11

I bought this book because we play a Midnight Archipelago campaign. The book was very helpful with our naval needs and helped in all our questions.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Ships and Sea Battles
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Art of the Duel
by Jacob R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/17/2009 10:58:10

Art of the Duel is a highly focused supplement to the Legend of the Five Rings RPG. As the name suggests, this book gives all sorts of background on the dueling traditions of Rokugan. However, it doesn't just stick with the familiar Iaijitsu and Taryu-jiai from previous editions, but goes beyond, showcasing dozens of styles of competitions with full rules.


While most of the game text and the new schools are geared towards duels or games, that by no means restricts them. Included are some fantastic character options for most builds. Do yourself a favor and check this out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Art of the Duel
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Warlords of the Accordlands: The Master Codex
by Joshua S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/17/2009 09:40:06

This is an amazing book, the classes are well designed (though not necessarilly well balanced) and the races are departures from the stereotypical norms. Class / Race abilities are amazing. For someone who likes D&D 3.0 or 3.5 this book is a blast.


The other reviewer says that this is an almost unreadable scan, I disagree, I haven't had any problem with reading it. Some of the pages were at a bit of an angle when it was scanned in, however it is readable without any difficulty.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Warlords of the Accordlands: The Master Codex
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Way of the Crane
by Nathan R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/14/2009 14:23:18

My review isn't about the material of the book. The material is excellent; one of the better clan books in the series. My review is about the quality of the scanned PDF; there are many pages that the edges are cut off and not a just a few letters here and there, but chunks of artwork and full words. Some of the pages are crystal clear and some are fuzzy, but not impossible to read. In addition, this book like the rest in the Five Rings series is not bookmarked in any fashion, just a scan of the book presented "as is."


If like me, you wanted a PDF copy for review for your games, then this is good buy for the price as long as you are willing to overlook the many errors. I have to say that I am dissappointed that Alderac has not devoted the time and effort to release one of their premiere games in higher quality PDF form.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Way of the Crane
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Sundered Faith
by Megan R. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 06/06/2009 05:38:49

This adventure is an urban interlude, which should be run when the characters are in a large town about other business. The town needs to be big enough to have organised government and a sewer system... because the former wants the latter cleaned up!


It appears that recently some sewer workers were slain while cleaning up after a recent earthquake, and the 'city fathers' want to hire some adventurers to deal with the problem. If the characters don't take heed, it is suggested that some of the undead who are actually causing the problems pop up out of the sewers and attack passers-by or even the characters themselves until they do do something about it!


The adventure itself is a fairly straightforward 'dungeon bash' with a few twists - being a sewer it is very cramped - a 5-foot diameter circular tube, which will cause problems for both tall characters and anyone using a weapon that needs to be swung for full effect. The place is heaving with undead too, as the earthquake opened a way to a long-lost evil temple hidden in the bowels of the earth. The undead are enthusiastically coming out to infest the sewers and the city above. Worse, the temple is resistant to the usual magic that adventurers tend to employ - turning undead doesn't work as well as normal, and healing spells are also diminished in potency.


Although there's occasional mention of 'filth' and 'foulness' the fact that sewers are dirty, disease-ridden places is by and large ignored. You might wish to add a few choice diseases, and get characters to make Fortitude saves to avoid retching at the stench! The descriptions do not really bring over the feeling of claustrophobia that a small, dark tunnel ought to either - but perhaps adventurers are made of sterner stuff and don't mind such enclosed spaces...


Possibly worth dropping in as an interlude if your characters are wandering around a suitable town without much to do, especially if they enjoy dungeon-crawl fighting adventures.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Sundered Faith
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Magic of Rokugan
by Don W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/18/2009 22:41:05

Not bad if all you want is extra magic for Shugenza....



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Magic of Rokugan
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Legend of the Five Rings: 3rd Edition Revised
by Alan K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/17/2009 05:43:48

Having longed to try this game for years, I finally get the chance to own it and hopefully try it with a group of fellow roleplayers. Sadly my joy at getting a bargain in the recent GM Day, was quickly shattered after looking at the PDF.


For those complaining of poor quality, my first advice is don't use Adobe. The pages look fuzzy and out of focus, which is nothing to do with the PDF; I tried a free PDF reader and got clear, crispy pages.


The main reason this is a disappointment, is the laziness of the people who created this PDF. There are no bookmarks in this PDF, so to look for anything you need to search or go from page to page. Using a free PDF reader, I have already added my own bookmarks to this PDF. I can also arrange the pages into an order that makes character creation, so much easier; then going back and forth between hundreds of pages; i.e. from the Clans at the front to the back for the Schools to the middle for the Attributes.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Legend of the Five Rings: 3rd Edition Revised
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FarScape Roleplaying Game
by Francisco J. B. C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/05/2009 13:07:26

A great buy due to the GM Day (horray for us, guys!), this is a nice d20 (DnD 3.0 players handbook required, mind you) take on the well-loved if short-lived series. The only problem I see with it is that it's a scan of the actual book, so that means it is a bit on the heavy side (95 or so Mb), and that the text is not that clear. There's also the issue about the layout using an unconventional two colum format that gets a bit hard to get used to, or for some other it might get a wee bit hard to read after a while.


All in all, the spirit of the series is captured and there's no need to buy anything to flesh out your campaign as all the relevant information is in there, presented in concise, organized and useful manner.


It would definitely be a five-star product if only the quality of the file could be improved, but if you had any interest in the series or like Space-Opera settings, this is a really good buy and almost as steal at the sales price.


LIKED: The quality of the informations.


DISLIKED: The overall quality of the scans. To a lesser degree, the unconventional page layout.


OVERALL: Satisfied with the product.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
FarScape Roleplaying Game
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Stargate SG-1: First Steps
by Ian K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/15/2009 13:14:42

This review applies to the recently updated version of the PDF.


The First Steps book contains a wealth of original material for the SG-1 game, ten new worlds to explore each described in detail. There are new alien and near-human races, new skills and new feats to go with these worlds.


The PDF is a scanned image of the book, rather than a publication created from the original typesetting material. The image format results in a large file size.


The tracking lines, evident in the previous version available here, have now gone. The image quality is much better than the previous version as well. The missing pages, pages 77 and 80, have made it in to the new scan.


A much better version of the PDF making this a good purchase for the SG-1 game.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Stargate SG-1: First Steps
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