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Shadowrun: Hell on Water
by William J. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/27/2016 23:20:10

This book is fantastic. It does a beautiful job at capturing the Sixth World and it was just a straight up fun read.


What makes this book so fun to read is our nameless narrator. Whom kind of reminds me of Marcus from Borderlands. A very strange use of metaphors which really helps flavor the book. It also uses a very interesting jumping around narrative style to make it like you're piecing together the story as you read. Something akin to a Catch-22 or Pulp Fiction, where the story isn't told in a linear fashion. I honestly loved it.


The story itself follows a team of runners as they make it through the gauntlet known as the south bridge to Lagos Island. They have to deal with tribal disputes, the undead, magical orginizations, and organ leggers while attempting to deliver 3 mysterious packages. That basically captures everything that makes Shadowrun such a great setting. It's not about one thing, but instead about many moving parts that make the world feel real. And the narrative does a great job at making all these conflicting goals come together.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Shadowrun: Hell on Water
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Shadowrun: Boundless Mercy
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/17/2016 15:35:55

I didn't have the opportunity to play any of these at convention and in retrospect that was probably a good thing. There are many other Con missions that are much more interesting and fun. I suppose I should have been suspicious based on the blatant hard-sell marketing for the physical copy but I didn't pick up on that. My first issue involves the 'how' premise for the Johnson here (I'm keeping this vague to avoid spoilers if you do decide to purchase it). How on earth is she financing these runs? Now it's easy enough to find a workaround but it's just the first of many that are required here. Earlier Missions were also very good at giving alternatives to combat and multiple ways of approaching things. Less so here and I hope it's not a trend for the future but I think it might be.


For a long time, Missions were the best published adventures you could get but I'm afraid that's not the case any longer...



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Shadowrun: Boundless Mercy
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Shadowrun: Shadows in Focus: Sioux Nation
by Lewis G. I. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/17/2016 12:10:58

Great job! My team really enjoyed playing through this. It has some good characters and plays smoothly. I love that they are touching on the Native American Nations. They do a great job adding scene and setting background so the GM can go in any direction they want.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Shadowrun: Shadows in Focus: Sioux Nation
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Shadowrun: Howling Shadows
by LIAM G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/16/2016 18:16:32

Howling Shadows is riddled with editing errors, duplicate art, and cost multipliers given without a base. Whereas many of the ideas of it are good, implementing it in game requires unreasonable amounts of game master discretion. When Catalyst was approached about this and we requested a simple Table with an availability and cost for the critters in the book they doubled down and insisted that it was intentionally omited. Claiming it was an editorial choice.


This in face of the fact that several items in the game can only be aquired by multiplying X where X is the base cost of a critter (something completely unlisted in the book). Not to mention tat apparently the idea of buying a Tiger off the Black Market is impossible but you CAN somehow get top-secret military equipment and ballistic weaponry.


Catalyst really dropped the ball on this one and their refusal to so much as spend an hour throwing together an official cost list as errata has cost them my buisness in the future until this issue is addressed and I recomend you do the same.


The purple of a rule book is to provide clear and concise rules and content that can be used in the game, you should not have to spend hours crawling over it insearch of numbers and values which the company has apparently CHOSEN not to print.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Shadowrun: Howling Shadows
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Shadowrun: Fire & Frost
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/14/2016 16:03:06

This book was my first foray in more years than I can remember into the world of Shadowrun fiction. I could not have made a better choice. The plot line was fantastic, the characters were wonderful, and even when I was able to tell a surprise was around the corner, I wasn't able to suss it out completely. I devoured the book as quickly as I could turn the digital page and it left me with a hunger for more that caused me to immediately buy six more Shadowrun novels (of varying length). Buy this book and read the hell out of it. You won;t be disappointed.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Shadowrun: Fire & Frost
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BattleTech Touring the Stars: Ionus
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/02/2016 21:16:27

Touring the Stars: Ionus provides us a report on a geologically old world with a dry atmosphere.
Even at the beginning of the product, the in universe reports admit that this world isn't too interesting.
However there is a history to this world, plus it isn't lost or dead like some of the other Touring the Stars releases.
There's no strange animal wildlife, rather write ups on two vegetations which might be intresting from a fluff perspective for GMs.


This release's adventure seeds are interesting, incorporating things like breaching hulls and water filling up sections slowly each turn.
So while the world itself might not be too interesting, the possible activities around it could be useful in crafting unique situations for some games. The world's existence is owed to being a secret shipyard after all, from a covert ops angle GMs might find that fun.


Compared to other Touring the Stars releases, it isn't horrible nor out of the ballpark excellent.
It is a old world that is still active nestled within the Free World's League.
There's potential for causing mayhem within a world slated to be a Warship production facility.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
BattleTech Touring the Stars: Ionus
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BattleTech: A Time of War: Quick-Start Rules (Free RPG Day 2013)
by Tom S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/22/2016 08:55:08

A Time of War is Catalyst Game Lab's attempt at bringing the Battletech Universe to an Role Playing Game format.
This product in particular is the "quick start" free rules that give you a mission, some characters, and off you go.
Overall these types of releases (there are three total overall, each with a different mission) give players a small taste of what to expect from the game's rules.


The game's engine runs on simple two (or three) dice with six sides, similar to the Battletech Total Warfare or Alpha Strike ruleset.
The mission is simple. The characters are low power enough to be normal "thug" NPCs for a regular 5,000 XP created character.
The equipment is already assigned to a character, so there's no real "shopping" you need to do.


As a strength, this is where the releases go right. Here's your sheets, a mission, just sit down and play.
Apparently these Quick Start Rules for AToW are missions used as a "starter" mission for bigger campaigns down the road that you make.
They are generic enough for any starting or experienced GM to utilize, plus they are free!


On the weakness of the product, as stated earlier there's not much option to alter the characters.
There's no quick character generation rules, though informally I've been told "just change a skill to something else you want."
Also there's no cost sheet for anything to purchase, thus I can't do something like trade in a weapon for something else.


If people are looking at this for starting a campaign from the go, don't.
Rather get A Time of War AND use this to start a campaign.


If you're just looking for a fun, one-off, easily playable mission to try then this and the other Quick Starts by CGL are useful.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
BattleTech: A Time of War: Quick-Start Rules (Free RPG Day 2013)
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BattleTech: A Time of War: Quick-Start Rules (Free RPG Day 2012)
by Tom S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/22/2016 08:54:52

A Time of War is Catalyst Game Lab's attempt at bringing the Battletech Universe to an Role Playing Game format.
This product in particular is the "quick start" free rules that give you a mission, some characters, and off you go.
Overall these types of releases (there are three total overall, each with a different mission) give players a small taste of what to expect from the game's rules.


The game's engine runs on simple two (or three) dice with six sides, similar to the Battletech Total Warfare or Alpha Strike ruleset.
The mission is simple. The characters are low power enough to be normal "thug" NPCs for a regular 5,000 XP created character.
The equipment is already assigned to a character, so there's no real "shopping" you need to do.


As a strength, this is where the releases go right. Here's your sheets, a mission, just sit down and play.
Apparently these Quick Start Rules for AToW are missions used as a "starter" mission for bigger campaigns down the road that you make.
They are generic enough for any starting or experienced GM to utilize, plus they are free!


On the weakness of the product, as stated earlier there's not much option to alter the characters.
There's no quick character generation rules, though informally I've been told "just change a skill to something else you want."
Also there's no cost sheet for anything to purchase, thus I can't do something like trade in a weapon for something else.


If people are looking at this for starting a campaign from the go, don't.
Rather get A Time of War AND use this to start a campaign.


If you're just looking for a fun, one-off, easily playable mission to try then this and the other Quick Starts by CGL are useful.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
BattleTech: A Time of War: Quick-Start Rules (Free RPG Day 2012)
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BattleTech: A Time of War Quick-Start Rules
by Tom S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/22/2016 08:54:22

A Time of War is Catalyst Game Lab's attempt at bringing the Battletech Universe to an Role Playing Game format.
This product in particular is the "quick start" free rules that give you a mission, some characters, and off you go.
Overall these types of releases (there are three total overall, each with a different mission) give players a small taste of what to expect from the game's rules.


The game's engine runs on simple two (or three) dice with six sides, similar to the Battletech Total Warfare or Alpha Strike ruleset.
The mission is simple. The characters are low power enough to be normal "thug" NPCs for a regular 5,000 XP created character.
The equipment is already assigned to a character, so there's no real "shopping" you need to do.


As a strength, this is where the releases go right. Here's your sheets, a mission, just sit down and play.
Apparently these Quick Start Rules for AToW are missions used as a "starter" mission for bigger campaigns down the road that you make.
They are generic enough for any starting or experienced GM to utilize, plus they are free!


On the weakness of the product, as stated earlier there's not much option to alter the characters.
There's no quick character generation rules, though informally I've been told "just change a skill to something else you want."
Also there's no cost sheet for anything to purchase, thus I can't do something like trade in a weapon for something else.


If people are looking at this for starting a campaign from the go, don't.
Rather get A Time of War AND use this to start a campaign.


If you're just looking for a fun, one-off, easily playable mission to try then this and the other Quick Starts by CGL are useful.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
BattleTech: A Time of War Quick-Start Rules
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BattleTech: Technical Readout: 3145 and 3150 [BUNDLE]
by Philip F. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/19/2016 17:51:32

I like bundles, and I liked the two books I got in this one.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
BattleTech: Technical Readout: 3145 and 3150 [BUNDLE]
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BattleTech: Technical Readout: 3150
by Philip F. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/19/2016 17:49:56

A wide variety of units to appeal to a wide variety of people. Interesting lore. Some fantastic artwork.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
BattleTech: Technical Readout: 3150
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BattleTech: Technical Readout: 3145
by Philip F. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/19/2016 17:49:31

A wide variety of units to appeal to a wide variety of people. Interesting lore. Some fantastic artwork.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
BattleTech: Technical Readout: 3145
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BattleTech: Touring the Stars: Butte Hold
by Richard R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/05/2016 14:01:45

This is the low point so far in the series. Pretty thin on ifo



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
BattleTech: Touring the Stars: Butte Hold
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BattleTech: Combat Manual: Mercenaries
by Richard R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/05/2016 13:59:47

I like it good book but got faked out by the way they did the breakdown on the way units are organized.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
BattleTech: Combat Manual: Mercenaries
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Shadowrun: Court of Shadows
by dan t. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/05/2016 11:39:29

This book cannot decide if it’s a supplement or an alternative setting and as such it fails at both.


The book provides a good overview of the court its self but nothing on the rest of the metaplane.


There is nothing at all on playing a character from this setting in the book:
No advice on character gen for this setting.
No archetypes suitable to the setting.
No local Fae races.
No life path options.
No setting related qualities.


There are some rules on bringing characters in to the court from a traditional SR5 game.
Your weapons transform in to setting appropriate slings, bows and crossbows that still use the same skills stats and mods. Your cyber ware looks more steam punk but functions the same and the wireless bonuses still work even though there is no matrix here. Some other gear translates to like maglock passkeys turn into a fancy skeleton key.


Riggers are given the ability to control animals;
“the gifts and technologies used by riggers become a quasi-mystical connection to the animals or paracritters of the area.”
A list of animal parallels for vehicles and drones are given.


Deckers are given the ability to hack the minds of people being used to store others memories.


No clarity is given on magic use in this metaplane:
No background count or aspect information.
No information on if there is an astral plane linked to the metaplane.

No information on spirit summoning in the fae metaplane.


The layout and presentation of the book is great and the art work is first rate although much of it isn’t relevant to the book. A lot show guns that the book states would look like crossbows. Also cyberware is shown without the expected steam punk look. I would have liked to have seen pictures of all the fae race common to the court.


So, it’s a well presented book that starts off well, gives a good overview and has the usual well written short stories. Sadly it is let down by poor rules and missing information and a lack of depth to the setting. There is not enough information to run it as a standalone alternate setting or enough information on the interaction of the court with the material plane to make this a useful extension of the main shadowrun game. Not worth the price.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Shadowrun: Court of Shadows
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