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High Guard
by Megan R. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 08/17/2016 12:04:53

What's Traveller without, well, some travelling... especially in space? High Guard is designed to provide a toolbox to empower every aspect of spacefaring in your game from designing and operating starships to using them in spectacular combat.


The Introduction begins by explaining where the name 'High Guard' comes from in the first place - it refers to a vessel standing overwatch in a position that is higher in a gravity well than other ships. That's a useful place to be, as if combat should take place when under the influence of a planet's gravity (or indeed that of any object in space) it's advantageous to be higher in it than your opponent. Harking back to the age of sail, one would speak of having the 'wind guage' when in a position where the wind conferred an advantage - here it's the 'gravity guage' instead, but a very similar concept.


Other topics explored in the Introduction cover terminology, the various types of space navies to be encountered - Imperial, subsector and planetary (assuming you are using the Third Imperium default setting) - and the concept of the Ship's Locker (standard equipment carried aboard all ships such as vacc suits and emergency equipment). It ends with a listing of different types of ship, including a useful size chart.


Chapter 1: Ship Design then gets down to detail of how the process of designing and building ships work. You can use existing designs 'as-is', modify them or come up with wholly-new ones... but will need to hire a naval architect to oversee the project. For those who want to have this level of control, there is a thirteen-step process to follow starting with creating the hull. It's a detailed process, one that will keep you happily occupied for a while and, like many design processes in this game, can become an end in itself, an enjoyable pastime rather than the more ulitarian designing of a ship for your next game. As well as cost, you need to keep track of tonnage and power requirements.


Next is Chapter 2: Weapons and Screens. This goes into detail about the weapons and defensive systems that can be mounted on a spaceship. There's a huge range of weapons that can be employed, and this chapter concentrates on what you need to know to install them: cost, power requirements, hardpoints to attach them and so on. Fighting with them comes later, never you fear! There's also a bit about defensive technology, mainly point-defence weapons and screens. Physical armour is covered in the construction chapter above.


Still looking at building ships, Chapter 3: Spacecraft Options gets quite interesting as it looks at how to customise your ship and presents a wide range of options from alternative drives and power systems to adding acceleration couches... and far more. Everything is described in terms of cost, tonnage and power requirements, linking it all back to the original ship design process.


Next, Chapter 4: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft looks at vessels which differ from the norm presented in the previous chapters. These range from custom-built ships utilising the latest concepts and technologies to ones built by less-advanced species who have at least begun to reach for the stars. This is followed by Chapter 5: Space Stations, which looks in equal depth at space-based constructs designed for living in space rather than travelling through it. A similar thirteen-point checklist is provided for you to work through if you wish to design one from scratch, and there are also notes on some of the specialised space stations that are to be found out in the black.


We then take a look in Chapter 6: The Ship's Computer at the 'brain' of your space vessel in more detail. It's an interesting balance between modern advances in computing and the original Traveller concept of ship computers as being massive - a concept derived when real-world spaceship computers had about as much power as the average smartphone of today and computer facilities covered acres of land! There's information on the sort of programs you might need for your ship computer and how much they cost. Next comes Chapter 7: High Technology which explores some exciting ideas about what happens beyond TL15 (the upper limit covered by the construction rules presented so far). Perhaps you'd prefer not to use a Jump drive at all... well, here are details of alternate drive systems such as hyperdrives, warp drives, space-folding drives and even time drives allowing temporal as well as spatial travel. There are equally exotic weapons and screens and other equipment to browse through as well. Here it's a matter of what the Referee is willing to let you have or, if you are the Referee, how you want your universe to look.


OK, now we know how to design a ship from the keel up (and how much it will cost) but what does it look like? Chapter 9: Creating Deck Plans... hey, hang on a minute! We've lost Chapter 8! Seriously, there isn't a Chapter 8 in this book. Fortunately this appears to be just about the only error I've found, and all the indexing and hyperlinks work, so it's no real biggie... So, this chapter looks at how to draw deckplans that reflect the ship you have just taken so much trouble to design accurately. It's all a matter of scale, and relating the known tonnage of different elements of your design to the whole. Some talent at technical drawing or a good drawing package might help here, though.


This is followed by Chapter 10: Fighters. Never mind these big ships, what about those swarms of single-seater ships you see swarming about in science-fiction movies? For a start, they are generally more fun in a space battle than capital ships from a player perspective. There are some design notes, although the main process introduced in Chapter 1 is sufficiently flexible to construct fighters as well as larger ships. There are also notes about how they are used in combat and even how they are recovered by their mother ship when the fight is done.


Next is the bit you've been waiting for - combat itself - in the shape of Chapter 11: Capital Ship Battles. Whilst it is possible to use the core combat system presented in the Core Rulebook - which does work for ship-to-ship battles as well as for when people brawl - it gets a bit cumbersome if you want to stage a mass battle of capital ships. So here is a vastly streamlined system based on, but separate from, the space combat rules detailed in the core rules. It takes a while to set up, but once that's done the actual battle proceeds at a suitably dramatic pace.


Finally, there is the Jayne's Guide to Spacecraft of the Third Imperium (presented by the Travellers' Aid Society, of course). This provides a whole host of ready-made ships (using the design process outlined in this book) complete with statistics, price, running costs, crew requirements, external illustrations and isomortphic floorplans - starting with a single-seater light fighter and working all the way up to battlewagons like fleet carriers and dreadnoughts. There are a few interesting ones along the way - the Type S Scout and the Far Trader are still in there, which will be remembered by many Traveller players from previous versions of this game, a laboratory ship built on a ring structure, and even the Annic Nova... an alien craft which formed the basis of a classic exploration adventure back in the days of the Little Black Books!


Overall, this contains pretty much all you need to know to get travelling... with an elegant design system that's infinitely scaleable and flexible whatever sort of spaceship you need.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
High Guard
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Central Supply Catalogue
by Jake H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/17/2016 04:04:14

This book has a lot of high quality and very visually appealing art, while the price is a bit high, it is very much worth it as a physical book, I believe the price of the PDF should be slightly less, but its still a nice purchase for the expanded options in both weapons and equipment. The extra weapon traits are very nice and its a great addition to be used alongside the core rulebook. This really fills all of the missing weapons I felt the game needed. The artillery and vehicle weapons are visually awesome and all in all, a worthwhile purchase.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Central Supply Catalogue
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High Guard
by Simon S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/16/2016 17:08:37

CAUTION! Both this and the main rulebook are staggeringly unoptimized. Both are crashing my current gen ipad within one or two page turns, making the pdfs a complete waste of money if you plan to use anything other than a laptop. I know its not an issue with my ipad, since I can easily run far more graphically complex and larger files. I have downloaded and read through nearly 100 pdfs from dozens of publishers on this sight and rarely, if ever, experienced crashes. This new edition is the only one ive experienced issues with. Also, between crashes I managed to discover that there is no ship record sheet in the book, yet another instance of Mongoose neglecting to provide adequate record sheets. This will be my very last purchase from this publisher.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
High Guard
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D66 Compendium 2
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/13/2016 20:56:20

Very useful, despite my limited RPG time these days, I find it useful for both RPGs and Sci-fi wargames.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
D66 Compendium 2
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D66 Compendium 2
by Richard N. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/06/2016 14:50:35

I purchased the first compendium some time ago and found it to be an awesome tool for helping with adding flavor to my campaign. I use it at least once or twice every session and when I am preparing. So when I saw that the 2nd was out I snagged it right awayand was pleasntly surprised to see that they "kicked it up a notch" this time around. Not only are there pages and pages of names for everything from people to pets to famous space battles to recreational drugs, they have added D66 Event tables for careers to use during character creation! And they are awesome! I would highly recommend this (and the 1st one!) to anyone who has ever had that moment when a player asks "So, what is the name of...." and you drew a blank.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
D66 Compendium 2
by Daniel C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/04/2016 00:04:00

I was looking for some new Events to use. I asked for suggestions and was told this was what I wanted. So I came and bought it. I was not disapointed in any way. Not only did it have an event table for "Life Events" but lso had events for each of the core careers in the Traveller core rule set. Some fo these are great background ideas. Add to that the book has many more tables that will be quite useful I am sure. Overall this product was well worth the price I paid for it. I would strongly recomend this to any Traveller GM. I am glad I added this to my collection.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Encyclopaedia Arcane Chronomancy
by gerald h. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/31/2016 02:51:59

I'd really thought that Demonology had to be the lowpoint of the Encyclopaedia Arcane series, until I read the Chronomancy installment.


Basically the entire book revolves around the Chronomancer feat. It requires 5 ranks in Knowledge: Continuum (inclass Bards & Wizards only until you take the feat.), spell casting, and for you to pick two of five listed metamagic feats. Three of which aren't in either the core rulebook or this one. No idea if they even exist. One of the required is Quicken Spell, which you won't be able to use for several levels if you're getting it Chronomancer as quickly as possible. Which you'll probably need to, since all acquisitions are preceded by going insane.


You're a fighter who has learned too much about the continuum & paradox because Chronomancy is a thing? Congratulations, you're insane. And going to be completely insane, increasingly homicidal, and overall handled like a bad npc until you pick up 5-6 levels of Wizard. So you can take the chronomancer feat and pick up a quirk. Most of which are badly written potential death sentences. No you don't get a choice on how YOUR character responds to the knowledge, the book has spoken.


Oh, and you get to track multiple types of paradox and run them through the clunky rules to determine how it's going to affect every type of roll on your character sheet. Doesn't this sound fun?


Then there's ritual chronomancy which allows you to complicatedly, but quickly, perform things that would actually be fun if you did them the hard way. Also, it massively increases paradox, which will wipe you out of existence eventually. Or give you more quirks. Yay.


You also have two prestige classes, one of which requires you to be an 8th level wiz/sorc then give up spellcasting for a bunch of abilities that mostly only work against chronomancers. It also requires multiclassing to pick up the six required feats. The other requires basically every feat or skillpoint on your character sheet for ten levels to qualify for. Don't worry, it doesn't include Concentration. You didn't need that right?


Chronomancers are supposed to be lonely hermits according to the book, which makes them a bad choice for a PC in general. Especially since the only way it really seems like this book would work for a party is if everyone was a wizard aiming for the same prestige class.


Frequent, bizarre death (Paranoia) and insanity caused by an insane universe (Call of Cthulhu) can work just fine, and even be part of the appeal, in a game. However, those all have strong thematic reasons and everything works towards it. That leads to fun role play. AE Chronomancy combines clunky mechanics with hamfisted railroading to lead to annoying roll play instead.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Encyclopaedia Arcane Chronomancy
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Jeremiah Roleplaying Game
by Ben S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/29/2016 17:05:30

I only watched a few episodes of this show, but I can tell this sourcebook seems to capture the feeling of the show well. It is an interesting and well thought out post apocalyptic world. At around $5, the price is great for the pdf.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Jeremiah Roleplaying Game
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Touch of Power: Core Rule Book 1
by Kerry H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/16/2016 20:50:12

Well that was a waste of $5.99, this book has absolutly nothing to do with Traveller (mechanics or settings wise) from what I can tell. It appears to be nothing but a poorly written fantasy heartbreaker, so I find it really odd that it's showing up under Mongoose's Traveller's Aid Society stuff.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Touch of Power: Core Rule Book 1
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Introducing.. Alicia Debeaux
by gundabhai j. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/06/2016 01:38:14

Wow what A Relief To watch this amazing book.
Please help the community by making your reviews constructive and informative. Give reasons why you think this product is good or bad. Reviews which lack constructive elements may be deleted since they don't offer the community useful information.


If you feel that this product was poorly scanned, or had some other technical issue, please contact us and let us know about it so that we can resolve the issue.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Introducing.. Alicia Debeaux
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Traveller (French Language Edition)
by Damien T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/03/2016 22:35:23

Traduction de l'anglais vers le français bâclée, paragraphes manquants, et de nombreuses phrases dénuée de sens... un parfait exemple d'incompétence de la traductrice Sandrine THIRACHE à éviter à tout prix ou mieux écrivez à l'éditeur aprés avoir lu un exemplaire du livre et vous aussi râlez pour que ils corrigent ce livre qui mieux traduit serais un super livre à posséder en VF, sinon il vous restera la VO et le dictionnaire anglais/français !



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Traveller (French Language Edition)
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Traveller Core Rulebook
by Bruce O. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/17/2016 13:23:32

First i need to establish some bona fides. I have been playing Traveller since 1980. This is a great iteration of the game. It covers basic combat, vehicle combat, and ship combat. All the careers from the original are in there, including most from Citizens of the Imperium. World Building basics are in. The only thing missing from the original Little Black Books is Starship design. Gone are the complexities of some versions. This edition goes back to the original 2d6+skill, and adds a stat bonus. The digital version comes with an easy to read "printable version" which removes the art and saves memory. Overall i am loving it! And nobody dies in character generation.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Traveller Core Rulebook
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Traveller Core Rulebook
by stephanie m. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/09/2016 10:20:02

Really disappointed. I was an early adopter to the beta PDF. We were offered $20 off the final product (essentially pay half up front) and what we got was a poorly printed POD version on poor paper which caused colour fade and leakage. It also had a curved cover with heat/moisture wavy pages.


Turns out there's another version with the amendments at Mongoose. A print run with better paper for the same price. We werent told about this individually, the owner mentioned this on the forums (which i dont frequent) and after he'd taken the money. The first I knew of all this was when my inferior copy turned up in the post.


I feel ripped off and wont be buying mongoose stuff ever again.


If you really want this edition, DON'T buy it here. Go get the proper version for the same money at the publisher's website.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Reach Adventure 1: Marooned on Marduk
by Che W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/28/2016 09:06:53

This is the very definition of an adventure on rails. While there are some interesting characters and a nice one-page map / stats for a shuttle, the adventure is presented like the outline of a novel. The product could be enhanced by having some meaningful choices given to the players. It cries out for a local area map with locations to explore and a range of possible solutions to the situation set up. To run, the Referee will undoubtedly want to use the core ideas but flesh out at least a small part of the described world in more detail.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Reach Adventure 1: Marooned on Marduk
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The Bronze Case
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/12/2016 22:55:39

This is a fun little romp through a backwater planet, where the player characters are caught up in a situation where their good samaritan actions put them smack dab in the middle of a criminal underworld war, and some industrial espionage dirty tricks. The Bronze Case is presented as an "aside": the PC's ship is undergoing maintenance for a bit, and one thing leads to another, and they're helping a beautiful secret agent courier the epynomous bronze case to an undisclosed destination. Gangsters. Spies. Corrupt Cops. Car Chases. Road trip!


The Good: the adventure is very come-as-you-are. There's no major plot rails here. If the PCs mess up, they mess up and they might have some explaining to do to the local constables, but they're Travellers, and they'll leave the port on their starship soon enough. If they are more successful, they'll have made friends with some corporate espionage assets. The NPCs are statted-up using the new Mongoose Traveller 2nd Edition rules, and are given some basic personalities. The GM is given some tips on running car chases using the aforementioned rules. There are some fun little encounters to run, and some low-powered combats to fight, all with some pretty solid worldbuilding context.


The Not So Good: The Bronze Case is very come-as-you-are. If the PCs do not buy in and be good samaritans, rather than amoral murder-hobos, there is no adventure. There are ways to address this problem, but nothing is mentioned in the write-up. There are a couple of places in the adventure where there's a little bit of railroading, but it's all in good fun, and can be avoided, with a bit of GMing. As well, there are plenty of adventure hooks to thread by the end of the adventure, but nothing is brought up: by the adventure's end, there could be a criminal organization with off-world ties that has it in for the PCs. And the industrial espionage angle is not followed up either. Lots of adventures can be spun off of the Bronze Case, but there are no follow up scenarios suggested.


Fixing the buy-in: Instead of having the players choose to be good samaritans in order to run the Bronze Case, the PCs might already have the main NPC friend in the adventure as a contact in their list. This way, they're doing this contact a very big favour, and have motivation to go on the adventure. Most PCs will not have all their contacts named and fleshed out. This is a great opportunity to introduce a new contact for a player whose character hasn't been able to leverage their contacts into an adventure, or an asset yet.


I'd also suggest fleshing out the highly corrupt, yet very in-your-face security forces and criminals on the planet in question. There are plenty of good RP opportunities that are glossed over between the PCs and a variety of shady characters, and possibly including an NPC police detective tasked with handling/containing the PCs and their adventure would make for another interesting layer for this adventure.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Bronze Case
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