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5150 Fringe Space
by Scott T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/03/2017 01:42:37

Well, I have to say that this is quite unexpected. I actually found a RPG that I like! And best of all, it is a solo experience!

I was looking around for a game system that I could use to flesh out my out of cockpit adventures in Elite: Dangerous. I really like that game, but it leaves something to be desired when it comes to experiencing all the stuff that must go on outside of your ship, as do 99% of most space games, sadly. So, I wanted something to give me an easy to use gameplay framework for resolving stuff that could happen stationside and plantside. After reading the description for the game, it sounded exactly like what the doctor ordered.

The rules run 75 pages or so (plus extra pages for charts, etc), but the promise that it is the type of game you could explain to a friend in 10 minutes is largely true because the core mechanics are simple to grasp and highly abstracted. I particularly appreciate this because I am at that age where I just don't have the patience to read 200-page rule sets that get bogged down in tedious minutia that have me counting individual screws on a rifle. Fringe Space's mechanics are sort of chess-like in that they have a simple to grasp overarching mechanic that revolves around a "reputation" score and a xd6 rolling mechanic for the bulk of actions. Once you get that down, the rest flows easily.

The solo campaign generator seems to be nicely simplistic but still loaded with story-telling possibilities. Case in point: my first test game involved me trying to unload some contraband cargo at a starport. It played out in a hilarious fashion. I initially found the dealer in a restaurant stationside. His name was Russe Powash, was 33 years old. Oh, and a drunk. Using my "talk the talk" skills, I convinced him to buy the contraband from me. He agreed, but told me to meet him at a motel the next day to do the actual exchange. As I am playing a low-level pilot, I had no backup and went alone. When I got there, I met the dealer. I also met his bodyguard, Josuha Jenka, a 42 year old man who packed a pistol. Yeah, I didn't like the way this was going. Long short, the deal fell through, and Powash flew into a drunken rage and started swinging at me. Even though he was tougher than me, somehow I got the better of him and beat him to death with my bare hands. At this, his bodyguard took out his pistol and took a shot at me. I ducked behind cover, drew my own pistol, and fired back. The bodyguard ducked behind cover and then decided to beat a hasty retreat from the motel, no doubt off to find a new employer.

That took about 10 minutes to resolve (not including the time it took to generate the NPCs). Awesome. Just awesome.

Yeah, I like this game. A lot! I have never said this about a board game or RPG before, but I think I will definitely be picking up one of the follow on modules, probably New Beginnings: Urban Renewal that I understand adds some groundlevel chrome.

I need to play it some more to really get a feel for it, but based on my first test encounter this seems like a fun RPG made for solo gamers who want to have some simple fun in a sci-fi environment. Recommended.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
5150 Fringe Space
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NUTS! - Final Version
by Tony B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/17/2017 20:07:55
Great Game and Great Support From The Author! Buy It!!

After searching high and low for a WWII ruleset, I decided that I would buy Nuts! Final Version as my game of choice.

I was swayed primarily by the forums on TMP to make this purchase. In most "what ruleset should I buy?" threads within TMP, Nuts! had come up over and over and over again.

The thing that stood out most to me is the ability to play solo. I don't often get to have games face to face, so I was looking for a ruleset that would support a single player. The very same ruleset also allows ,ultiple plays to play on the same side versus the ruleset. And finally you can play head to head. At first I thought it was too good to be true, but again thread after thread spoke highly about the game.

With the ability to play solo, comes the Reaction System. And to me, this was the clincher as to why I should buy the ruleset. How many times have you played a game where you know exactly what you're going to do? Probably all the time. This ruleset allows you to throw all of your free will out the window (should you want) and let the mechanics dictate what you will do.

Example: I get spotted by an enemy unit. He has a SMG and I have a rifle. He then fires on me first. Because I am out gunned, the mechanics will either force my unit to duck and cover or run off the battle field.

For those that would rather not have the mechanics dictate what your unit does, you can make turn your figures into "stars". This allows you more flexibility and control. I personally like the randomness.

Another great aspect of this game are PEFs (Possible Enemy Forces). These are counters on the board that move around and try to hone in your own units. You don't know what they are until you come across them. They could be anything from a single light machine gun team holding a defence to a full platoon to a tank.... or it could just be nothing at all. The PEFs add a high level of realism (and stress!!!) to the game.

The PDF also comes with a Campaign System and even has an optional ruleset within the PDF that allows you add RPG elements into the game.

I've spent the past few weeks toying around with armies (primarily Germans vs Americans) and I really like how the game plays.

I did find a number of the rules difficult at first to compresend. I by no stretch am a technical writer myself, but some rulings (to me) were not worded well. Maybe I just didn't get. There was also a few typos and (again, to me) misstated rules. So I registred at the Two Hour Wargame forums and posted a few questions. Within two hours, I got a direct reply from the author himself. He took my question and broke my query down step by step being sure to address each and every point. He was clear and he answered my question to the utmost satisfaction. I even pressed my luck a bit more and posted MANY more questions to which again he took my question and broke my query down step by step being sure to address each and every point. Not once have I ever been able to ask a question and get a direct response from the author. WOW!

At first I was put off by the $20.00 cost of purchasing the PDF. Thats because most PDFs I've ever bought on Drivethru / Wargame Vault are usually half that price. And the ones in this price range are usually full colour and have lots of art within them. For full disclosure, this PDF is primarily in black and white (with the exception of the front and back covers) and has a few diagrams within it. I was very hesistant to drop close to $30 Canadian (yes I have to deal with exchange rates) on this. But again, I looked at TMP and saw how highly people rated this rule set, so I took a leap of faith and bought it. Looking back, IT WAS A GREAT DECISION I MADE!

Yes it can look like a lot of money for a "plain looking ruleset", but I assure you that 100+ pages within it is worth every penny. I also don't mind paying up for quality content. The bonus is that the author is engaged with the community on a daily basis. As he said to me "this is what I do for a living". So I don't mind paying a bit more knowing that the the proceeds of the sale go directly to him and renumerate him for his hard work and effort. Also, even if all you play is a total of 5 games and put the ruleset away, you're cost per hour to play works out to being $2.00 per hour (5 games at 2 hours each = 10 hours. $20 into 10 hours). Where else can you get entertained for such a minimal amount of money?

The Bottom Line: Buy this ruleset. You will not be dissapointed!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
NUTS! - Final Version
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Mission St. Mary
by Richard S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/09/2016 12:25:12

As a supplement for Larger than life this a good book.

However, I was saddened by the lack of detail on the setting. I'm afraid you'll have to make that up. Also if you are thinking that this will be great for some Steam Punk fun then you will probably be disappointed. Yes you can play a Steam Punk character but there is very little in the rules that help you to build a unique Steam Punk character

Anyway, enough griping. What's the good news? Well, you have an entirely new country to explore filled with lots of new NPC's. Lemuria is a tropical locale and as such this supplement really enhances your Jungle and Lost World adventures. Of note are the dinosaur rules. Ever fancied hunting a Dinosaur? I wouldn't recommend it unless you are awesomely brave!

The core of this book is the idea of hanging out in a bar in Mission St. Mary, looking suspiciously like Indiana Jones and meeting various NPC's who can hire your services to go on many and varied expeditions. Real good Pulp fare.

Also there are rules for you to play a Tarzan, Lord of the Jungle story. Edgar Rice Burroughs would be proud!

So. Let down in regard to Steam Punk and background info on the campaign setting. Somewhat small for its price, yet I find it a very worthy add-on to my 'Larger Than Life' games.

I would love to see an expansion that covered a setting like E.A. Burroughs John Carpenter on Mars books!



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Mission St. Mary
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Larger Than Life
by Richard S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/09/2016 12:04:44

This game is awesome if you want to solo roleplay some over the top pulp action. I love Warrior heroes Legends by the same company (see my review for it) and this does for Pulp what WHL does for fantasy.

If anything, it does it better! There is a great system for clue gathering and it has a really great adventure generator. You'll find yourself hopping from location to location hunting lost treasure and foiling evil masterminds in no time.

Highly recommended!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Larger Than Life
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Warrior Heroes Legends
by Richard S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/09/2016 11:56:43

I love WHL. I have been trying to find a way to solo roleplay that I like. It never really clicked with me until I bought Warrior Heroes Legends. It is a meeting ground between miniature skirmish rules and roleplaying. The numerous tables help you to roll up a character, recruit some hirelings and go on many and various high adventures around a sizeable map. There are even some simple rules for character advancement.

If there is one thing I have learned whilst trying out various systems its that simplicity is paramount when solo roleplaying. The author understands this and keeps the rule set very tight.

I wish there were more monster stats but it would be fairly easy to create your own. You can play a monster if you wish. I have designs on playing a dim witted Troll who goes on a rampage!

I have marked it only 4 out of 5 because the layout of the book could be more intuitive. I find myself flipping backwards and forwards throughout the document a lot! I'm sure this could be improved. Also I found the dungeon delving rules somewhat irksome. I have followed somebody else's lead in this regard and use the rules for 2Hour Dungeon Crawl by the same company. A fairly simple fix albeit one which involves spending more money...

To summarise. I'm very impressed and will be playing this game a lot!!



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Warrior Heroes Legends
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2 Hour Dungeon Crawl
by Richard S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/09/2016 11:37:55

Excellent dungeon crawler that takes up very little space to play. Recommended.

Yes, its rather expensive but THW is a small indie press.

The rules aren't complicated. I'm not sure why the previous reviewer got so confused?



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
2 Hour Dungeon Crawl
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Warrior Heroes Legends
by Ranjith E. M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/27/2015 15:06:51

Please note that this review is written from bad to good.

In my eyes, the campaign system feels somewhat lacking. There are mechanisms for travelling around the world, having random encounters and various things, but when you first start out, the game does not help you give a motivation for your character to actually do so. There are quite a few aspects where you need to fill in such gaps, giving the character reasons and motivations in order to justify decisions made purely in order to activate the mechanisms - or the other way around, filling in gaps that the system leaves. The latter can be seen with cities, villages and towns. While there are some differences, there is no real incentive to visit a city as most benefits of it over towns are rather marginal or dependent on getting lucky to get an involuntary encounter to begin with.

Mind you, those things can be handled by house-ruling, but even though that is really easy to do, I think it is not the way a product of this price category should be. Especially since the description claims that the engine provides you with a "why" for your adventures, which it does not, most of the time.

Another, personal, failure of the game is based on the information on the homepage of the designer (which is in turn information that is on the back of the book). "Legends aren't born, they're made" is the motto, followed by an explanation that suggests that you may start as an "inexperienced spellcaster" (among other things), and that you are nothing special when you start the game. Then you read the rules and they are designed in a way (and is suggested that you abide by it) that you start as a REP 5 character. REP 5 is defined by the game as "veterans of numerous successful encounters. Knights and Veterans would have a Reputation of 5." That does not really sound like nothing special, does it? An average soldier is REP 4 and someone who has limited combat experience would be 3. And as far as character development goes, REP 7+ is the highest category reserved for incredible creatures. Basically, you start in a position, where you could - if you are really, really lucky - reach the highest standing in the game in 2 fights (admittedly, you have to be very lucky, but it is still quite possible). The promise of development seems to be undermined.

As with the 2 Hour Dungeon Crawl, the price is also rather steep, although not as extreme as with the Dungeon Crawl. However, if you remove the material that is virtually identical with Sword Play rules, which are given away for free, things become dimmer, as we are left with the campaign system, the dungeon crawl system and additional interactions and magic items.

This brings me to the next negative - the dungeon crawl system. Personally, I think it is inferior to the one that comes with the 2 Hour Dungeon Crawl. While the 2 Hour Dungeon Crawl system creates potential encounters sometimes not in your current location but nearby and then has them chase you through the dungeon, Warrior Heroes Legends resolves all random encounters immediately. In addition, it adds quite a bit of fiddliness by using a deck of cards to generate and map the dungeon. The rules as written also basically expect you to constantly move forward, never going down the other corridor or checking alternative routes (which are rather rare thanks to the design anyway).

However, there is also a positive as the crawl system does add random events, which is a nice touch.

This also comes into play with another positive - if you also own 2 Hour Dungeon Crawl, you can easily integrate it into Warrior Heroes Legends with only minor adjustments needed (and maybe a decision whether to use the Big Bad and Minions tables of one or the other). In my opinion, that is a great advantage, as this combination greatly improves the experience.

There are also a lot of very nice details and gadgets - like the tables for NPC generation and interactions with them. Also the job opportunities and the encounters are well-designed and quite usable.

In the end, I have the impression that the design somewhat stopped between having only individual encounters and having a complete campaign generator. The components that are there are really good (except for the dungeon crawl), so if you are willing to fill in gaps and design the general situation, this book could be useful, although it is rather costly for what it does.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Warrior Heroes Legends
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2 Hour Dungeon Crawl
by Ranjith E. M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/25/2015 05:22:26

Please note that this review is organized from bad to good.

The biggest problem I see is also something that people who have not purchased the game will have noticed: it is extremely expensive. Nearly 30 cents per page is rather extreme, given that many very good RPGs are sold at 10 cents per page, sometimes even less. So, this is an investment you should probably think about.

Contentwise, the biggest problem I faced was with the structuring of the rules, which at places felt counter-intuitive. Mind you, it is not anywhere near the rules of Level 7:Escape in that regard, but I feel that it makes it unnecessarily difficult during the first sessions. Like, for instance, that you can search for secret rooms only after facing the PEF that is automatically generated for any room - but the rules first give you explanations about secret rooms and then the PEF information - which can possibly get important for you much earlier than the secret rooms. Likewise, a few clarifications or maybe even repetitions at times would have been helpful. Traps can be generated by PEFs, but the only information about them is given for traps generated in a special type of secret room.

Some rules are rather sketchy, as for instance the melee rules - it seems that once a character starts melee, that single melee has to be done to the end before other melees can be handled. And how you can get into multicharacter melees is left somewhat sketchy.

The absence of a character sheet is also disappointing given the high price and small size of the book. Surely, there would have been space for one more page. And the way characters are created and handled, designing such a character sheet would have been feasible, I think.

"Grunt" is used ambiguously - defined as any NPCs early on, but later on also any non-leaders of the group (which could also be PCs). In my eyes, a rather unnecessarily confusing word choice.

Not as much of a problem, there is another tidbit that can confuse people on the first reading of the book: in several places, the word "table" is omitted when telling the reader to consult one of the tables that are placed at the end of the book. Until you notice the omission, this is rather confusing as the main tables have the same title as the sections they belong to.

A very slight negative in my book, as it is about optional content, is the lack of variation for traps and lack of theming for rooms or secret rooms (there are different secret rooms, but they are not themed as the minions).

Personally, I didn't find the stop boxes at the ends of sections as helpful as intended most of the time. A detailed step-by-step example of a somewhat more complex fight would have been really helpful in my eyes.

In addition, I like to start with insignificant youngsters who may have a spark but not yet the experience, and the system advices you to use a character that is defined as an experienced adventurer (although this is mostly fluff, so you may ignore it).

It is a little sad that levelling up quickly becomes meaningless because of that (your starting adventurer is supposed to be REP 5, and REP 7+ is already said to be legendary).

On the plus side, the book is very light on the ink, making it easy and cheap to print. Typeface is clear and readable as are the tables.

The dungeon generator is simple but seems well-balanced. It is also easy to use.

The rules in general are rather simple and straightforward, although initially, you may have to check out a few situations to really make them click.

All the tables are placed in the back of the book, which is a very good design decision as it makes playing the game easier once you have grasped the basic rules and don't need to reference the text proper.

The game really shines in my eyes in three nice aspects: First of all, there are four different missions that may be the cause of your dungeon crawl, killing the boss monster or getting the treasure being only two of them. Thus, combat may actually be something you don't need to fulfill your mission. Secondly, there are several different bosses (10 if I counted correctly), one of which is selected randomly at the start of the game taking also your general power level into account (okay, only slightly, but still). Whenever you encounter monsters in the dungeon, which monsters you encounter is influenced by who the boss is; unless you meet a rival adventuring party... Thirdly, the PEF system is really great, adding a dynamic element to the crawl. Enemies do not simply sit in a room waiting for your crew to burst through the door (okay, some of them do that as well), but they move through the dungeon and hunt you down as well. And the rules for that are extremely simple.

All in all, the game is a lot of fun as a solo dungeon crawl with many neat details despite playing very quickly and simple. The different missions and boss-based minions give a good sense of theme while the PEF system adds a lot of suspense and foreboding to the game. However, it is, at its heart a dungeon crawler, but definitely one of the best I have come across. Personally, I found it worth the investment despite the rather tall price tag.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
2 Hour Dungeon Crawl
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5150 : New Beginnings - Urban Renewal
by Stefan C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/27/2014 11:29:00

5150 NHC presents a very detailed system, highly applicable to solo play, for determining events in a cyberpunk, near-future setting. Events are encounters with NPCs. This is a perfect sandbox system. Although a set of events should best be determined before play and used as the game progresses, the level of detail is such that with no preparation the GM can handle a game session, although the game would be rather slowed down. The probability if an event occurring depends on the time of day and the area in the city. Once an event occurs, there are many tables to determine the social class of the NPCs encountered (from very wealthy to criminal element), their race (human or one of five alien races), how many there are and what kind of reaction they will have when they meet the PCs. Reaction depends on the difference in social class, whether the NPCs have encountered the PCs before and other factors. Most encounters can be categorized as either combat or social. There are also rules for what happens when the PCs are at home. Events such as burglaries and police raids are well covered. There is also a system to determine combat and character generation, but this system can be replaced by any other SF gaming system if a rules-lite system is not your preferred way of roleplaying. In addition to the rules for sandbox playing, there is the setting which in my view is very good. New Hope City is a city of humans, aliens, cyber enhanced individuals, low-lifes, mega corporations, mercenaries and all the other ingredients which make a very believable cyperpunk environment. I give this game 5 stars because it is the best system to determine events I have ever seen. I even think the system could be applied to fantasy or other genres, with a bit of work from the GM.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
5150 : New Beginnings - Urban Renewal
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Red Sand Blue Sky - Heroes of the Arena
by Tim R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/11/2014 14:18:01

Good solid rules that are easy to learn, with a campaign option.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Red Sand Blue Sky - Heroes of the Arena
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CR 3.0 Swordplay!
by James S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/15/2013 17:29:37

Surprisingly fun system... Better than any other fighting system I have come across.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
CR 3.0 Swordplay!
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Friday Night Fights 2nd Edition
by Megan R. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 08/31/2013 11:42:18

If you want to recreate the excitement of a good boxing match, this is your go-to game.

First up, you need a boxer character. A system conbining some die rolls and some free choices let you design a boxer in terms of strength, stamina and fighting style. Then you... well, fight. You can fight boxers generated by other players or there are a whole bunch of pregenerated ones against who you can fight using the rules (which provide for 'automating' boxers when there isn't a player controlling them) - so this game works whether you are on your own or playing with friends.

The whole match is controlled by die rolls, mostly against tables. These cover manoeuvering around the ring as well as the chance of landing a blow and the results of each move. There are two levels of detail that you can choose from, depending on whether you want a blow-by-blow account of your fight or are more interested in just who wins. There's even a table to work out the judges' decision, should a knock-out not occur. And the winner gains Fame which, amongst other things, determines who he will fight next.

For those who want more, there are optional rules for training boxers and for being a fight promoter - running a stable of boxers and managing their careers.

Oh, and if you want, you can always use these rules to moderate a boxing match that the characters in a role-playing game get involved in, or even just go to watch. It's a specialised ruleset for boxing matches, use it whenever you please!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Friday Night Fights 2nd Edition
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Chain Reaction 3.1 - Final Version
by John Y. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/15/2013 15:21:20

This is one of my favorite rule sets and it's free! The rules provide a clearly explained tutorial on how the THW reaction system works. And, to my mind, does the best job of it since their very early releases like Six Gun Sound 1st ed and the various Mayhem titles. In fact, as much as I enjoyed Six Gun Sound 1st ed. I hadn't, until this release, enjoyed any of the successive rules THW put out. That has changed as a result of CR3: FV.

Download the rules, grab a couple of figures and follow the tutorial and you'll have a decent grasp of the game. Do not try to mentally guess how they will go. These rules can be hard to grasp from reading alone; the play is the thing.

The included "campaign" mean you have a complete game (minus vehicle rules) for no investment but the time to play through some scenarios (again, I can't emphasize that enough, you need to play the rules to really appreciate them).



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Chain Reaction 3.1 - Final Version
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Red Sand Blue Sky - Heroes of the Arena
by axel a. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/21/2012 19:16:32

Very fun game, rule book is a little dull but the game more than makes up for it. Best payed as a small campaign over a few weeks at the end of your regular gaming session.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Red Sand Blue Sky - Heroes of the Arena
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Gangsters!
by Dan P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/01/2012 17:11:49

Nice introduction scenario for the Chain Reaction rules. Requires the Chain Reaction 3.0 rules which are free from this site. Also introduces simple vehicle rules.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Gangsters!
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