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Achtung! Cthulhu - Shadows of Atlantis Campaign
by George U. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/11/2016 19:47:05

The quality of writing plus the depth and breadth of background information is amazing. This is not a campaign where you buy it and can jump right in so if you are looking for something light and easy as GM (or Keeper) then I would recommend going with something like 3 Kings instead. If you want something that is full of flavour and you're willing to put some time in reading (there are over 300 pages) then this is a campaign that I highly recommend.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Achtung! Cthulhu - Shadows of Atlantis Campaign
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Mindjammer – Dominion – FREE QUICKSTART
by Megan R. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 04/16/2016 10:07:18

The book opens with a brief overview of what Mindjammer is all about and an excellent concise summary of how the Fate ruleset works. Even if you do not intend to play Mindjammer, this is almost worth picking up for the Fate overview alone - excellent for introducing new players to the game mechanics. However for those who will be playing Mindjammer, comments relating to the game are woven through it, so again even if you don't need the introductory adventure, your players might find it a useful quick reference to the rules.


Next, four pre-generated characters are provided to enable you to jump right in and play - the rules summary doesn't explain how characters are created, it concentrates on how to actually play the game. They are carefully interwoven to create a coherent group with reasons to be together at this time and place, a nice example of how to create a party for this game... although they may or may not want to form a longterm relationship, as two of them are fugitives who have been captured by one of the others! One is a sentient ship, complete with a synthetic human analogue avatar for those occasions when being a starship in inconvenient.


Finally, there's the introductory adventure, which takes the party to Yand, a rediscovered world on the edge of the New Commonality of Humankind's sphere of influence. It is hotly contested by both the Commonality and a neighbouring (and hostile) bunch called the Venu. There's a lot of background about the planet itself and its current situation crammed in here. It's a fascinating and well-developed system. The adventure itself revolves around retrieving a kidnapped agent of the Commonality, and spreads over eight scenes - although you don't need to play all of them. For example if you only have a short playing time, like a convention slot or a single evening, you could get by with three scenes. There's a detailed timeline to help you stay on track. The adventure is exciting, and also demonstrates how the Commonality operates which - as it is all-pervading - is a good guide as to whether you and your players are going to enjoy playing Mindscape. There's a lot going on, a lot to keep track of, and the GM should study the adventure thoroughly before play begins to be able to stay on top of it. If the party is successful, other published adventures make for good follow-ons, assuming the party stays together, giving you the beginnings of a campaign as agents of the Commonality.


This is an excellent introduction to this game which makes the most of its particular character and should give your group a good idea if this is a system they'd like to play longterm.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Mindjammer – Dominion – FREE QUICKSTART
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INFINITY RPG FREE Quickstart
by Sean S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/07/2016 19:15:45

Full Disclosure - I have done freelance writing for Modiphius on the Infinity RPG


The Inifinity RPG uses the same universe and background as the tabletop miniatures game by Corvus Belli. The background is near future science fiction, with healthy doses of transhuman and anime influence. The universe was what initially drew me to the tabletop game - and it just screamed for an RPG. The background in the Quickstart gives you just a taste of the universe. Not really enough to give you a good impression of the depth of thought that Corvus Belli put into it for the miniatures game.


The game uses the 2d20 system, developed by Modiphius for a number of their other games, including Mutant Chronicles and the upcoming Conan RPG. The basic mechanic - called a test - is to roll 2d20 against a target of attribute plus skill. Difficulty is set by the number of successes needed for - erm - success. There are ways to roll more dice and to count each roll as more than one success, but more on that later. The important thing to know is that it plays quickly, lending itself more towards cinematic than crunchy.


There are two other in-game economies to consider: Momentum and Heat. Momentum is generated from "extra" successes above those needed for success, and can be spent on a variety of special effects on actions, or added to a group pool to be spent later. Some groups have reported issues with frivolous tests being used to stockpile Momentum - I have not, so this might be a function of GM style. Heat comes from players "buying" extra d20s for tests or from Momentum rolled by bad guys. The GM can use Heat for a variety of effects, like bumping NPCs up in the initiative order, triggering scenery effects, and other assorted mischief.


The scenario included in the pack is a solid instroduction to the universe and rules, though it starts a little slowly for my tastes. The pregenerated characters are likewise solid in abilities and background, even if a bit hackneyed for those already familiar with the universe. The PC sheets can be a bit hard to sort out, but in Modiphius' defense, they were done before all the rules were complete.


In short: a solid introduction to the background and game system - well worth checking out if you like the genre.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
INFINITY RPG FREE Quickstart
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Robert E. Howards CONAN Roleplaying Game Quickstart
by Michał B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/04/2016 03:41:44

I'm terribly sorry but i wasn't that pleased with this Quickstart. I ran the adventure yesterday, so my opinion is qiute fresh:
Pros



  • 2d20 system is easy to learn. After our first enqounter even one amateur player was able to understand quite everything.

  • Momentum (when 1 player was managing the pool) is a lot of fun, giving players lots of opportunities to change the dice fate. Combining that with Fortune Points... just marvelous

  • Doom Pool was also quite fun, but one of my players decided that he won't be avoiding attacks (like Parrying) so I won't get any Doom points :)

  • Ready Characters are well balanced and they quite nicely fill the party.


Cons



  • Adventure was one of the worst (if not THE) scenarios I've ever run. Whatever the PCs did - THE PICTS ATTACKED. They turn left - THE PICTS ATTACK, they go to the farm - THE PICTS ATTACK, they run forward - THE PICTS ATACK, and so on... I know that I could make it more interesting but I wanted to run as it was written. BORING as hell - sorry :( But of course we had fun, we always have fun playing RPGs.

  • I had some issues with the soak and parry rules, but I figured it out. But still some rules stayed a mystery, but they weren't that significant to our first session.

  • No Conan in the adventure :(

  • No pictures of prepared characters


Altogether: Conan RPG as a system (+mechanics) VERY 5/5, the adventure - total crap. 1/5
(5+1)/2 = 4 :)



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Robert E. Howards CONAN Roleplaying Game Quickstart
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Achtung! Cthulhu: GM Screen
by Michael L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/03/2016 04:16:25

Sadly I was pretty disapointed with this product, for the front inserts do not go together at all they are simply 6 completely different images recycled from other A!C products.
The screen insterts were ok I guess, they weren't overly helpful and a bit wasteful. The Call of Cthulhu one has 6 pages, while the Savage World has a whoping 8.


Savage Worlds Screen



  1. The first insert is a overview for character creation.

  2. The second a overview of aerial combat and a small listing of general combat rules and which page they're on in the SW book.

  3. All about how to learn and using magic mechanically for SW.

  4. An overview of how Sanity, Dementia and Horror work mechanically (Which was the most helpful part for SW).

  5. Two tables for rolling Horror and Terror effects.

  6. A tbale for various shell shock events, a encouter table and some stuff on aeriel bombing.

  7. This page is six tables of different weapons for SW.

  8. The final page is taken up entirely by a table of German ranks and their Allied counter parts (Something I don't think necessarily required an entire page on a GM screen)


Call of Cthulhu Screen



  1. The first insert is a overview for character creation.

  2. The second a overview of aerial combat and a small listing of general combat rules and which page they're on in the CoC6 book.

  3. This page is about mass combat and some encouter tables (Both of which are good).

  4. A list of all the new wartime skills and four lists of rules and their page number (Kinda helpful I guess)

  5. The fifth page is six tables of different weapons for CoC.

  6. The sixth page for CoC and the eighth page for SW are identical: They are taken up entirely by a table of German ranks and their Allied counter parts (Something I don't think necessarily required an entire page on a GM screen)


I think I was expecting something a bit more useful because I had hoped to just use the screen as is, but instead I've had to combine select pages from this and both Savage Worlds screen supplements to get something concise out of it. I think what bothered me most was the listing of rules pages instead of a quick summery of the rules, I wanted a screen I could glance at and have everything at my fingertips instead of glance at a list and having to flick through a book to find that rule.




Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Achtung! Cthulhu: GM Screen
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Robert E. Howards CONAN Roleplaying Game Quickstart
by Glenn F. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/29/2016 08:27:35

Take a long hard look at this game - it's got a great deal of promise.


A neat stat and skill based system with a 2(or more)d20 resolution mechanic that cleverly folds in special effects and varying success alongside levels of skill mastery and raw talent.


Armour and basic defences soak damage and circumstances increase difficulty. Effects add unique outcomes for different weapons and will work the same for spells.


Momentum is a group based mechnic that replaces your usual 'special' or 'critical' successes and can be shared with other players interchangeably with combat and non-combat skills.


Fortune are powerful 'Luck Points' and 'Doom' - Doom is something you buy for extra oomph when you need it, that the GM can spend later to fuel changes in circumstances or enemy spells (sorcery is nasty - just like the books).


DISCLAIMER: The above detail isn't designed to give you a pocket guide to the system, it's designed to make you ask the kinds of question that will lead you to the pages of the Quickstart, and hopefully, to a game run with them.


Only then will you understand what I've said, and a lot more besides.


Conan is shaping up to be a well-researched 'treu telling' of the world as originally envisioned, and is supported by a rules system that suits it well. If you read elsewhere that the 'Doom' mechnic 'ruins' the game, do yourself the favour of ignoring the 'doom-mongers' (ironic yes?) and trying it out yourself. I don't think most people critiquing it bothered to actually play...


An elegant system and THE Swords and Sorcery world as a combo deal. What more can you ask for?



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Robert E. Howards CONAN Roleplaying Game Quickstart
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Robert E. Howards CONAN Roleplaying Game Quickstart
by Craig P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/11/2016 15:58:16

The quickstart was all I expected it to be. Good game system. Can't wait for the complete rules.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
DUST Adventures Corebook
by Bence F. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/07/2016 17:48:40

This will be a short review. This is a genre which can be played both historic-realistic, and pulpy. I was interested in the pulp part mainly, as a pulp sourcebook this is very evocative, has a lot of supernatural elements and superhuman abilities to choose from, as well as superscience. One can play in this world both superheroes, and mere soldiers. superscience here can be considered magic, so with slight alterations, magic exists as well, depending on the GM. And it has Preussan non-nazi Axis (a bit similar to WW I feeling, but much better, more advanced, mystical, but not evil like the nazi scenario). Wow!


The writing style is very easy to read, not convoluted at all.


It's main strong force that it made again playable the Axis party (in other games the Axis are either Nationalsocialists, and thus evil, or it is WW I.).


It's bad side might be, that it should have more information about artifacts with more examples, more superpowers, and maybe more pictures about the available weapons. More info about the aliens. We do not even know how they look like! This just makes the reader want more. (Maybe, additional expansion books?)
Also I missed that this book covered only within Europe the following countries: England and France - and soviet Russia. What about whole Europe, especially Germany, Italy in details?? The author made comments about a coming book about the Asian frontier, but we want more about the Axis-European-Preussian culture/society (without Nazis - preussan style without nazis at WWII - this is the most interesting thing ever!) as well. Also I was sad that there was zero word on Mussolini and Italy and Southern-Europe generally, also could have been nice to have some British fascists (Mosley), though Britain is occupied in this setting... These could be added later, however.


Because of these I considered giving 4 instead of five, but the whole thing is so evocative that could not do that.


The Allied (especially the US) and the Soviet (here they are called SSU) factions are nonetheless very detailed. The integration of the materialism and spiritism within the SSU is also very excellent!


Last but not least, the system seems to be very easy, low numbers, (very good for those, who do not like to learn systems for too long), and there are also built-in tactical wargames attached to it.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
DUST Adventures Corebook
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Monsters & Magic Roleplaying Game
by Douglas B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/04/2016 23:56:12

A staggering achievement; in Monsters & Magic, designer Sarah Newton has given us a rules-light game which runs off of D&D/AD&D stats, but uses its own 3d6 roll-high mechanic and narrative-style traits and consequences to use those stats in a completely new system. With that description, you might expect the game to be a horrible mess, or a fantasy heartbreaker ("let me just fix these minor issues in the most successful RPG of all time"); instead, it's an elegant, lean, fantastic reinvention which brings its own strengths to the party without throwing out any essential D&D-ness.


Here's a simple mechanics example which floored me on my first flip through the rules: instead of characters having movement scores of 12" or 9" as in AD&D (or 120 or 90 feet, as in D&D), they have Movement attributes of 12 or 9, rated on the same scale as Strength, Dexterity, etc. This means they have Movement bonuses or penalties that can be applied to action rolls where movement speed is important. Want to run a chase between a human with Movement 12 (+1 bonus) and a dwarf with Movement 9 (-1 penalty)? Simple! Pursuer and pursued make opposed action rolls using their Movement modifiers every round; the winner of the round's contest accumulates "effect points" equal to their margin of success, and this continues until one of them reaches a total of 10 effect points and escapes (pursued) or catches their quarry (pursuer). But this isn't a special set of chase rules, as seen in many games; it's just a straightforward and logical application of the game's basic action-effect and contest rules, which can be applied to handle almost any situation that arises.


Effects and consequences are the basis for the system; you use them to inflict damage in a fight, but that's the least of it. You can apply effects to disarm your foes, give them penalties (or yourself bonuses), move them, or pretty much anything else you want; it's a simple, open-ended concept with lots of good examples. My favourite thing so far is using an extreme effect (15 or more points of margin) to disable one of the special attacks or abilities of the monster you're fighting: you cut off the stinger with the poison, blind the eyes of the gaze-attacker, cut the vocal chords of the creature with the fear-inducing howl, etc. I can't convey just how brilliant an idea I think this is.


There are plenty of other changes. On top of D&D-esque physical combat, M&M adds a mental combat system (with its own initiative, hit points, effects, etc.) which covers everything from fear and shock to seduction or intimidation attempts. Characters have freeform traits (along the lines of Fate's aspects) and a very simple mechanism for their use; if you have a trait which is applicable to a contest, you add your level as a bonus to that roll (+1 for each additional applicable trait). Like many of the narrative-oriented elements of the system, the trait rules are optional, and easy enough to lift out of the game if you don't want to use them; that said, I think they're a great addition, and I'm eager to try them out.


This game came out in 2013, but I've only just discovered it. And I'm glad I did. If you like any kind of D&D-esque game and want to try a well-designed, flexible system that gives you that D&D experience deepened and enriched with more characterization and narrative interest, I strongly encourage you to check out Monsters & Magic.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Monsters & Magic Roleplaying Game
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Robert E. Howards CONAN Roleplaying Game Quickstart
by Arthur L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/04/2016 23:11:05

Not sure what yo say, other than it seems to capture the flavor of Robert E. Howard's tales while conforming roughly to traditional fantasy rpg structure.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Robert E. Howards CONAN Roleplaying Game Quickstart
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Robert E. Howards CONAN Roleplaying Game Quickstart
by Paul T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/04/2016 16:26:54

This 52 page starter is well formated and looks really cool. Now I just ned to find some players.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Robert E. Howards CONAN Roleplaying Game Quickstart
by John A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/04/2016 13:06:03

Can only state that its what it says it is 4 Star for me but others might find even more use for it



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Robert E. Howards CONAN Roleplaying Game Quickstart
by Rich P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/28/2016 17:58:06

I wasn't familiar with the 2d20 system before and was concerned until I got to read the quick start. It reminds me a little of Marvel Heroic Roleplaying and a little of Fate but enough crunch for my crunch crazy players. I love the Doom and Momentum mechanic and no levels!


This fits the Hyborian Age setting and Conan perfectly, can't wait to see the full corebook. I'll be looking for 2d20 like products after this one!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Robert E. Howards CONAN Roleplaying Game Quickstart
by Kai S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/28/2016 17:18:30

We just had a nice playing session, going through this entire Quickstart Adventure in about 5 hours, with 4 players + GM.


I dont like 5-Star or 1-Star reviews if they arent deserved, just because some minor issue (like a single mechanic) isnt to taste of the reviewer, so I ll try and be as even as I can be to justfy my 4-stars.


The Good:



  • VERY fast and comfortable. The 2D20 system reads more clumsy than it plays, even the combat dice are easy to use and read after a quick explanation. Really underestimated the elegance of this system.

  • Doom mechanic gives the players a feeling of having influence. All of them liked it that they could mostly, but not totally, control my Doom income at the risk of failing more.

  • Brutal, but not too random combat. You cant take many hits, but you ll not be critical-killed instantly. Shields and Armor are worth a LOT, active Parry and active Dodge are integrated nicely with the escalating Doom price to be paid if you overuse them.

  • Spontaneous Mob rules lets the GM speed up combat, or slow it down, to his liking. Enemies can group up and split again easily, unlike for ex. Star Wars RPG, where you pre-design the minion groups for them to work.

  • No rolling for initiative speeds up combat, and especially the START of a fight, immensely. Fight starts, and the first player is already rolling for attack

  • Momentum and Effects to trigger varying conditions and special moves made a lot of sense, and you can sometimes at least get a lot of momentum out of spending all those Doom.


The Bad:



  • Most actions in combat are "I hit the enemy with my weapon", especially when you are first in a round ,and little momentum is yet built up. There is a distinct lack of varying combat actions.

  • Soak is King. Adelstan, one of the premades ,is insanely hard to take out. Also, the constant replenishment of Vigor both infight and afterwards at times makes it feel somewhat "MMO-gamey" with a full heal. The Wound mechanic did not happen often enough. However, once wounded, things go downhill fast, as the penalties are harsh.

  • Minion Picts arent any danger.

  • Mental damage happens too rarely to be an issue in this adventure, even though a sidebar claims it is.


The Neutral:



  • Its a Quickstart Adventure, and as such intended to showcase the mechanics of a system. That it does quite well, its extremely combat-heavy, and little decisions or storytelling by default.

  • The premade characters are vastly unevenly suited to the challenges in this. Adelstan makes or breaks the party in terms of combat, pretty much. However, this showcases a variety of archetypes, and through teamwork and momentum rules, a lesser-skilled character is still important.

  • By design, this adventure features very little diversity in enemies. I spiced it up a little by having differently armed and acting picts.


Overall, I believe the system is very solid, works fine, is easy to get into (we had 2 total newbies to RPGs, and they did great), we had fun, and the combat is so swift, you can really let loose there. Even if no further changes would be made, its a good core of rules, and if your group likes the Doom/Momentum mechanic, you ll be golden.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Robert E. Howards CONAN Roleplaying Game Quickstart
by David T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/27/2016 20:02:48

I have been running Conan role playing games since the 80's when the Dungeons & Dragons Conan adventure modules (Unchained &  Against Darkness )   came out. I've run countless campaigns with many game systems and I can say with certainty that this game is the best Conan role playing game to date.


I'm new to the 2d20 system, but unlike at least one reviewer here I did more than glance at a couple pages and then write a “review”. I've played through the Quick Start twice so far and never had a better time running a Conan game. The system is just pure fun at the table.


Players can spend Doom Points when they're desperate or reckless and really want to succeed, empowering the GM with Doom Points of his own. Players can also build up Momentum which allows ever increasing pulp adventure and exciting heroic action. Players also have Fortune Points they can spend to pull off amazing success, succeeding by strength of arm and will. I think any true fan will feel these combined mechanics really bring the world of Conan to life.


Combat is quick, ferocious, and bloody. Action is gritty and heroic, a great mix of realism and pulp. The game conveys a real feeling for the source material. It's a perfect blend of streamlined crunch and narrative gameplay. So much action can happen in a single die roll. This is Robert E Howard role playing at its best! 


Don't take my word for it, it's free by Crom! What are you waiting for? Download it and give it a try yourself!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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