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White Star: White Box Science Fiction Roleplaying [Swords & Wizardry]
by David B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/23/2016 07:35:00

I got my POD and have had a while to look it over and am please to say that I'm very, very happy with this game. The content, the quality and the layout are all top notch!

Here is a review I did for it on my youtube channel:

https://youtu.be/mSXZAxPyRmM



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
White Star: White Box Science Fiction Roleplaying [Swords & Wizardry]
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Sleepy Hollow
by Ahimsa K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/24/2016 14:33:30

There's not much to this, but what there is I really like. I think they could have done without reprinting the story as it's public domain and anyone with an interest in Irving's tale probably has it already. But the scholar class is a cool non-combat class and the NPCs are well made. It's 2 bucks and has about that much content, so it's a good buy (especially around Autumn.)



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Sleepy Hollow
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Bard
by Dorian Y. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/21/2016 21:45:23

I like my Bards like I like the economy. No magic. This bard is perfect. The saving throws and ac are not explicitely stated. Instead you are told to treat the bard like a thief at the same level. That was a good decision because it means that you can incorporate this bard in any system (swords and wizardry, basic fantasy, LL, etc) and you know that it will remain balanced with the other classes. The bard is simply a thief with a different set of abilities like mimicry and sleight of hand that improve as the levels go up. The bard is also allowed to use some of the weapons of a fighter.

I feel like this bard is very close to the one discussed 40 years ago in the strategic review. I am very pleased. With this I consider Swords and Wizardry Complete... well... complete.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Bard
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The Hero's Journey Character Sheet
by Stephen Y. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/04/2016 13:52:32

A two page character sheet with hand drawn artwork, giving it a 'ye olde' look to it. I'll likely use it in conjunction with my own version.

The 2 pages cover practically everything you'd need to make note of.

Worth a download: it's free.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Hero's Journey Character Sheet
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Brimling
by Nickolas H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/18/2016 01:33:23

If you like your Sci-Fi Space Operas to be a little more on the fantasy side (like I do!) then I recommend this fun White Star Race/Class supplement. Everyone's favorite little fantasy homebodies have taken to the stars in their opendecked galleons in search of fun and food! I can't wait to integrate these half-men swashbucklers into my White Star games



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Brimling
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The Hero's Journey Fantasy Roleplaying [Swords & Wizardry]
by Wayne H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/27/2016 19:09:33

James Spahn is the master of OSR games. Coming off the success of his brilliant take on Space Opera, White Star, he takes us back to the origins of the game. The Heroes Journey is an innovative take on Swords & Wizardry, this is James' fantasy heartbreaker. Drawing upon the classic tales, like Tolkien he is practically giving you this game. Well, okay technically he is giving you this game. So get it! Praise it! Love it. Take the journey, the Heroes Journey.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Hero's Journey Fantasy Roleplaying [Swords & Wizardry]
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The Hero's Journey Fantasy Roleplaying [Swords & Wizardry]
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/19/2016 23:09:30

The Hero's Journey by James Spahn is an old school, Swords & Wizardry White Box inspired roleplaying game of epic, nostalgia-driven, proportions. The rules are light and simple, leaving the role playing to the imagination and without bogging down gaming sessions. The entire volume evokes images of Lord Of The Rings, Dragonlance, A Wizard of Earthsea, and the Sword of Shannara, all of which were instrumental in my early gaming years. There are nods to early editions of D&D, but options to avoid those nods if one chooses. Speaking of choices, the book is littered with them! Optional additions are found on almost every page, which allows Game Masters and Players to set the level of comfort that they enjoy.

The Magic section brings back those classic spells which every old school player knows and loves, but doesn't become overly packed with useless incantations and barely understandable casting rules that some of the most recent games have. Creatures and bad guys abound in the section on monsters, and even includes a short section on creating your own evil minions to populate your home-brewed worlds.

My favorite part of this amazing book is the Magic Items section. it is filled with an abundance of classic and new trinkets for your players to get their hands on. But, what really makes this section shine is the way it treats magical weapons and armor. These items do not gain their mystical powers by enchantments placed upon them when forged, but by earning reputations and glory through battle and noteworthy events. This draws my imagination to things like Excalibur in the Arthurian Legend and Naegling, Beowulf's sword. Weapons who were feared and held in awe by those who had heard of their mighty deeds. Which lead me to think about fantastic stories where weapons might fail among enemies which either did not fear them or had not been introduced to their epic pasts.

All in all this is a fantastic game that throws back to those fondly remembered gaming days of yore, without jamming it down your throat, and still creates a new and exciting table top experience. You would be a fool for not adding this title to your collection!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Hero's Journey Fantasy Roleplaying [Swords & Wizardry]
by Joseph E. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/19/2016 12:17:18

I really loved the look of the PDF from the layout to the art this is a top notch production that PWYN pricing does not convey.

Within the first few chapters I was getting a very DCC vibe with the addition of luck to attributes and an Occupation table along with wording how most commoners never travel more then a few miles from home their entire lives. Now if you give the player race a d4 dice to start and no classes you could have a 0 level funnel.

The next thing I noticed was the reduction value some races get it like the Half-Orc when you roll damage against them you subtract that reduction value from the damage before applying it to the hit points. Also armor will add to the reduction value. This is a heroic RPG after all and steps are taken to make the heroes stronger. I'll return to reduction value in a moment.

Next up are the Classes all the popular classes are here and some others like Jester. The Demi-Humans have level restrictions and this is where the text fell apart for me and I need to go back a re read but it doesn't really discuss multi-classing or dual-classing which based off some of the restrictions and wording seemed like was an option.

The Spells, Monsters, Equipment and GM advice was all well written and was useful for new GM's and players but if you have run some games most likely you know these things.

Magic weapons was something new, they are not forged or crafted they are made by both deeds and actions. Simply put if you crit with the weapon mark down a myth point. You hit 5 myth points the weapon becomes a plus one. You created the legends and reasons for your world. I love this it seems like something that belongs in DCC where the players action forge them, now the action also forge the legendary weapons of the world. Now here is the kicker and you can tell this was inspired by Tolkien writing specific the Hobbit. If one of the Crits that gained a myth point also resulted in the death of the creature fighting the weapons becomes a bane of those creatures. Like Thorin's Blade Orcist "The Goblin Cleaver" or Gandalf's Glamdring "The Beater" who's legends where made century ago.
Now back to reduction points if your armor Reduction value saves you from going down to 0 HP it gets a myth point and at 5 myth points it will give you a +1 to both AC and reduction values.

This is a very cool little Whitebox hack and if you like Whitebox play and want something more heroic this could be the game for you. I've recently been getting into OD&D and I like some of the ideas in here.
At PWYW it's steal and even at $10 for the PDF it's a good deal. When the print version comes out it will definitely get a place on my shelf with all my OD&D stuff.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Hero's Journey Fantasy Roleplaying [Swords & Wizardry]
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/16/2016 19:25:25

The layout is clean and readable. Although, It is not hyperlinked. The art is good. Fans of Larry Elmore will enjoy his pieces throughout the beginning of the book. The rest of the art is as good or better. Larry's seeming unwillingness to illustrate feet and his preference for all women being voluminous haired 60's/70's pin-up is not a draw for me, personally. It is however very reminiscent of the re-issued Red Box and effective in garnering a sense of nostalgia.

I've looked over the book only briefly. I noticed that the thief skill subsystem (sneakery and such) use a d6 mechanic where starting characters succeed at tasks with a 1 in 6 chance. This chance improved with experience, but the granularity does not leave room for personal attributes or situational modifiers. All classes with non-combat skills use this same mechanic.

There are some nice bits regarding background professions and legendary weapons.

All the classes are present. My biggest gripe is that Clerics and Druids share the same spell list which contains only 6 spells per level. In fact, there is only the Wizard and Cleric spell list. These two lists are shared by the Bard, Cleric, Druid, Jester, Paladin, Ranger and Wizard.

The equipment, monsters and magic item chapters seem to be well fleshed out and unrushed.

In short, first impressions would have been worth 5 stars if there was a nature spell list for Druids and Rangers (0E be damned!), Jesters were replaced with some type of mountebank or illusionist class - again with their own spell list and again ignoring their history in the annals of The Dragon. Acrobats also need something to make them a conceivable player choice. With the Duelist an existing character option, the Acrobat class is less of a Swashbuckler and more of a cartoon gymnast. Overall, my complaints are typical of many white-box emulators in that enforcing maximum word count for each class sometimes backfires and you end up with options that seem either incomplete or trap choices for inexperienced players.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Hero's Journey Fantasy Roleplaying [Swords & Wizardry]
by Matthew L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/16/2016 14:23:53

I have long been seeking what I would call, my ultimate version of Dungeons & Dragons. I have tried many, many systems ranging from the various editions of D&D (from 2nd to 5th editions) all the way to the indie clones (Dungeon World, White Hack, Torchbearer), the OSR systems (including Swords & Wizardry and Labyrinth Lord) and modern takes on the genre of traditional fantasy (Pathfinder, Fantasy Age, Dungeon Crawl Classics). I can say, with all honesty, that they pale in comparison to this marvellous work by Mr Spahn. The Hero's Journey manages to capture that "feel" of D&D fantasy that other systems have tried to nail but haven't quite managed. The writing is concise, friendly and informal without being bogged down with colloquialisms or excess chatter. The rule system is simple and, once grokked, intuitive enough for old hands and beginners alike. The layout is crisp with some lovely artwork by none other than Mr Larry Elmore (I adore the front cover art; a Tolkien-esque tribute if ever I saw one!). A perfect selection of races and classes is presented along with a profession system which harkens back to secondary skills of earlier editions. I like it. I like it a lot. Alongside this there is an ample bestiary, a modest spell selection and some very spot-on advice for getting a game off the ground applicable to both veterans and rookies alike. James pitches at just the right level; inclusive and useful with no wasted words or dry prose. Moreover this is not a game that attempts to overwhelm readers. It keeps things simple and then enourages readers to journey towards the campaign of their desires; be that epic or modest in scope.

What else can I say? If I had any wishes for this book it would be information on creating specialist clerics, a larger spell list (including magic missile!) and more beasties. Then again, it is already so well packed that I have no complaints, only requests for more! I would love, love to see a companion volume to this along with extra rules options, more spells, beasties & deities.

To summarise: Mr Spahn has knocked this one completely out of the park. A wonderul piece of work, a terrific game; not just an homage to old-school D&D but, dare I say it, something that takes the old torch and re-lights it, paving the way through dungeons anew and then passing it forward for a whole new generation of adventurers to enjoy.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Hero's Journey Fantasy Roleplaying [Swords & Wizardry]
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/15/2016 20:54:24

I can only say one thing about "The Hero's Journey" and that is "Wow". This game takes me back to 1979 when I was first introduced to role-playing games, specifically the one by TSR, by my cousin. It was like I had discovered that magic was real and I was hooked for the rest of my life. This game did the same thing. I love Swords and Wizardry and as far as I am concerned Mr. Finch made a great contribution to the world of RPG's but Hero's Journey does everything that I have done to Swords and Wizardry and made it look good. There are also quite a few things that I had not thought of or overlooked; kudos by the way for damage reduction. The book itself is set up well and reads easily, and the art by Mr. Elmore is a welcome plus. In my opinion this game is as close as one will get to the "perfect" role-playing game. Buy this game, it will not be a regret.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Hero's Journey Fantasy Roleplaying [Swords & Wizardry]
by Szymon P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/15/2016 14:08:27

Just damn good...

The Hero's Journey reminds me of my first retro-inspired game. But the big difference is, my game was a heartbreaker disaster, this is a very well-written and polished book with my favourite Swords & Wizardry rules inside.

THJ is basically how my S&W games look - overhauled races and classes, houserules and a few modern ideas to spice up the adventures. The Profession rules are simple,yet cool, since they add some interesting ideas and characteristics to the lvl 1 hero. Adding dice pools makes picking a race a very tough choice for the players.

Classes? We have 14 to choose from, and all have a retro feel to them. Fighters are not useless anymore (thank you!), everyone has a clear and understandable advancement table and simple, yet useful abilities, just like in S&W: Whitebox.

The illustrations look great (the art made by Elmore is just perfect... and sexy). The layout is top-notch.

Right now this has replaced Swords & Wizardry: Complete on my list of favourite tabletop RPG games. While playing Swords & Wizardry, I had to always open my notebook with additional rules. But this has almost everything I need.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
White Star Companion [Swords & Wizardry]
by Pete S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/08/2016 18:24:55

This official follow up to White Star: Science Fiction Roleplaying is packed full of information and new content, while still maintaining the "toolkit" approach of the core rules. New classes include old standbys like the bounty hunter and the space explorer, but then branch off into more interesting (and pulpy) territory with the Novomachina (Transformers), the Man of Tomorrow (Flash Gordon or even Indiana Jones), and the Plucky Sidekick (Short Round!). New vehicles include starships and skycraft that can be dropped into any game as well as some familiar Star Wars analogues. New aliens and creatures are always helpful. Rawrarrs are going to find their way as trusted friends and co-pilots in many light transports and I'm personally a fan of reptoids such as Bossk and Kayman of the Lambda Zone, so the race of Crocodila is going to fit right into my WS campaign. (There is one feathered race in particular that won't be making an appearance, but that's another story. . .). Other new content includes a simple and intuitive Skills system as well as various new weapons and armor.

What I really liked were the addition of random charts and tables. One set of tables allow you to build solar systems from scratch, starting with the sun(s), moving onto the types of planets, their alien inhabitants, and even the technological level of these inhabitants. Another set of tables, the "Serials" section, randomly generates your character's background along with tons of flavor and plot hooks you can work out with your Referee. Very cool stuff. I rarely roll anything randomly for my PCs, but I do like to mine tables for inspiration, whether I'm building a new world or creating interesting NPCs, and these are all gems.

Overall, a fantastic followup to the original game and a must-have for any White Star or old school sci-fi Referee. I hate to say that it looks like any official product James M. Spahn creates for White Star is going to be golden, but if he keeps creating products like this I don't think anyone can argue.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
White Star Companion [Swords & Wizardry]
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White Star Companion [Swords & Wizardry]
by Matthew S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/06/2016 09:23:07

As always, another excellent addition to the White Star cannon.

Excellent new classes (such as playing Flash Gordon or an Ewok!) and rules for ground vehicles really help to round out any WS game.

New aliens and monsters also add spice to a game (reskinned Wells Martians, White Apes, and my favorite, the Lazer Rex!).

There are a few quibbles here and there. For example, while I love the Flash Gordon class, its inability to wear armor and lack of any innate protective ability, seems to make it a class that would struggle to stay relavent for long without constantly taking laser rifles to the face. But overall, if you liked WS you will like this book.

Oh, a special mention for the Serial section of the rules where you can randomly roll a character's background. It is an exceptionally simple life path generator but packs lots of interesting story hooks for development!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
White Star Companion [Swords & Wizardry]
by Reese L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/29/2016 15:13:37

Nice addition to my WS library. There are other third party products available that offer some of what is included here, but it's nice to see more from the publisher himself. Many of the 3PP offerings take the game in other sci-fi directions, but this brings more content that is obviously Star Wars inspired - bounty hunters, Ewoks, AT-ATs and so on. Love it!

I do see some typos and errors here and there, but like WS Core, I expect those to be fixed over time and teh PDF updated. James is a boss like that.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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