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Songs in the Key of Bedlam
by Philip L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/08/2014 17:12:19
This was the one Bedlam City product I regretted buying. The compositions simply did not fit the source material, and are not particularly good music in any case. They have a sort of metal/techno vibe, but fail to be creepy, threatening, or engaging, all of which are necessary to fit a city like Bedlam well. The one track that might work is City of Now, but it is my opinion that you can do better than all of this on YouTube for free. Plain Brown Wrapper deserves the money I spent for their fantastic work on a great campaign setting, but I will not be using any of this music.

Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Songs in the Key of Bedlam
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Straight Out of Bedlam
by Philip L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/08/2014 17:08:25
This is, in my opinion, the weakest of the Bedlam City books, but it's still pretty strong. The section on the dangers of astral travel in the city is spot on. The dark forces attracted to Bedlam's madness and misery are brilliantly described herein, and are legitimately monstrous and scary. Death's Other Kingdom is terrifying. The awful secrets are nearly as good as the original book's, the non-powered characters are strong and memorable. The section on the drug trade is excellent information.

It is, however, somewhat let down by the same problem I had with parts of the main book: black humor and deconstruction jumping over the edge into goofiness. The Supervillains remain difficult to take seriously, which undercuts the seriousness of other issues the books tackle fearlessly like racism, sex crimes, and drugs. The section on the past of Bedlam is decent, though I saw little use for it in most campaigns. Most of the adventures were too goofy for my taste, though I could see a few being used.

Overall, it's a must-buy if you want to run a magic-heavy game in Bedlam, and still worthwhile otherwise.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Straight Out of Bedlam
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Citizens of Bedlam
by Philip L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/08/2014 16:57:25
I bought this book along with the other Bedlam City products, and I was not disappointed. It evokes the same wonderful tone, grim sprinkled with spots of hope, and effectively embodies my favorite part of the original sourcebook: the ordinary, non-powered citizens. Because in the end it's not the tyranny of a supervillain or extradimensional conqueror that makes Bedlam City an awful city; it's systematic corruption, greed, apathy, and hate. We have sexual deviants, racists, and sadists galore, but also people who are driven to lesser evils for understandable reasons. All of them make sense as characters.

And then we have a few characters who are genuinely good people in spite of all that they're up against, though they too have their flaws. Most of them are at the breaking point, crushed by the responsibility of trying to help a sickened city. Your players will care. More than they fear for nameless civilians taken hostage by the villain of the week, they will feel for the fully-realized people who are mocked and attacked for trying to do without powers what the heroes will struggle to do with their extraordinary abilities: save a city that doesn't want to be saved.

If you want to run Bedlam City, or just grab some Iron Age character ideas, this is a fantastic supplement.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Citizens of Bedlam
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Bedlam City
by Philip L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/08/2014 16:46:29
Bedlam City is a fantastic setting book, packed with information and flavor. It is in many ways the antithesis of Freedom City. Its tone is relentlessly grim and thoroughly Iron Age, unafraid to tackle uncomfortable issues but with just enough spots of hope that players will want to fight that tide of depression. Its characters are not expys of traditional superheroes and villains, though they are often deconstructions. This is not a setting where the players will ask "why is my hero even needed?", though they may sometimes ask "what can my hero possibly do?".

As someone who loved the Rogue Isles of City of Villains and always wanted to play a hero there, to be one bright spot in the heart of the corruption, this setting really spoke to me. Corruption, apathy, and outright evil have permeated every part of the city, and it's all described in detail for your players to go up against. They will be fighting to save a city that, on some level, does not want to be saved. It is definitely a setting that stands on its own in spite of limiting itself to describing one city; it draws you in and makes you care, whether raising your hopes or kindling your anger.

The description of the city's infrastructure and the characters who make it work is the best I have ever seen. Everyone is a fully-realized character, with virtues and vices, and their presentation (laden with black humor) is perfect. You will love to hate most of them, but there are a few you will root for with all your heart, the aforementioned bright spots. The supernatural side of the city is also fantastically developed; Bedlam is a wonderful setting for magical heroes, a nexus of vile spirits, reality warpers, and astral travelers. It's also great for street-level vigilantes, with great detail on the vicious mob families, gangs, and drug dealers.

On the other hand, the super-powered characters are not generally ones I would be interested in. While the Westin Phipps everyman evil of many NPCs is powerful, the deconstruction and weird humor surrounding the supervillains lets them down in my opinion. Captain Condor (who looks more like a chicken) and Stabbo the Clown feel out of place next to the believable evils of crooked cops, vicious gangsters, and pedophile priests. Some work well, like Capricorn and the Nowhere Men, but Smashface the indestructible rapist baby-killer has no place in any campaign I can imagine playing.

In short, the strength of this book is an overwhelming aura of everyday, casual evil, with a sauce of supernatural wickedness that would haunt that sort of damned place and a light seasoning of people your players will want to save and see succeed. It looks racism, sadism, sexual crimes, and drugs straight in the eye and presents them unflinchingly. I may at some point run the entire city; until then, I will be forever taking bits, characters and institutions and the wonderfully evocative mood, to flavor my campaigns. This is well worth the purchase.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Bedlam City
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Bedlam City: Savage Worlds Edition
by Luke M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/18/2014 18:47:53
great supplement for a Supers game. has mispellings d obvious errors. also has outdated rules (Guts rule) but otherwise a great campaign setting.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Bedlam City: Savage Worlds Edition
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13 Shades of Darkness Savage Worlds Edition
by Megan R. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 08/16/2013 10:00:45
Aimed at those running superhero games with the Savage Worlds ruleset, here is a splendid resource consisting of a selection of supervillians all of whose evil plots are in some way connected with the occult.

As well as a full statblock and a detailed background writeup that tells you what that villain can do, how he came by his powers and his general attitude, each comes with some ideas that could be developed into full adventures involving him. (The background write-up often suggests more, but you have to do more development as to how to use the ideas spawned by them.) There is also a neat section on how to involve that supervillain in your campaign, if you fancy using him as more than a one-off opponent.

These villains are all pretty nasty, but in reading their backstories, many are pathetic even tragic... whilst their crimes are terrible so are the paths whereby they became what they are today. Are any redeemable? That is for the characters to find out. Some are, if they pay attention, seeking to be rescued from what they have become.

It's a good selection and used wisely should keep your superheroes busy for quite some time!

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
13 Shades of Darkness Savage Worlds Edition
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1001 Science Fiction Weapons (Revised)
by Steven H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/11/2013 20:52:34
Oh Happy Day! It's a beautiful list of destruction over 400 pages long. It comes with a very broad spectrum of weapons from Gauss guns to bio-organic weapons to Entropy weapons.

This was like being put in grocery store and being told you are the 1000th customer and you get a shopping spree to get whatever you want!

At $20 it is a good deal, but right now it's sitting at $12.95, which is a fantastic purchase. That averages out to $.02 a weapon.

Just flipping through the book gives you idea after idea. You can easily alter the format that they are placed in for the book, to one that will fit the game that you are currently playing.

The book has a large Table of Contents and a huge Index in the back to help you track down that special weapon of destruction you need to bring a little chaos to your game. Unfortunately, there are very few illustrations in comparison to the size of the book.

I Highly recommend this book to anyone playing a game such as BASH (Basic Action Super Heroes), Palladium's RIFTS, Wild Cards, or CAHS2 (Cartoon Action Hour Season 2).

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
1001 Science Fiction Weapons (Revised)
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The Sting of Death: a Savage Worlds Superhero Adventure
by Sean F. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 06/11/2013 16:27:11
SEAN'S PICK OF THE DAY: More Savage awesomeness, this time in the superheroic realm of play from Plain Brown Wrapper. "An ancient worldwide conspiracy...Twisted Nazis, sinister cultists and a cabal of crazed military officers" are all a part of this seven-part epic.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Sting of Death: a Savage Worlds Superhero Adventure
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Occult Diagrams Stock Art
by Jonathan S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/26/2012 13:38:13
The designs are cool but the image quality is really poor and pixelated. Not suitable for use in any design application that would see the light of day (or the heart of night).

Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Occult Diagrams Stock Art
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Occult Diagrams Stock Art
by Jonathan J. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/06/2011 09:50:11
Very large collection of diagrams and symbols for the occult. Haven't used any in a published product yet - but I expect to soon.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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Straight Out of Bedlam
by Chris P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/19/2009 09:48:02
Good stuff- and now more of a bargain.Fleshes out Bedlam City a lot more. Lots of stuff on Bedlam of the Past- from Victorian Era, PULP and the Silver Age (which seems like New York of the 70's). Some creepy stuff for psychics/magic types that picks up a major secret from the Bedlam book and expands it. Great new villians that fit the tone of the place (cruddy and sad or creepy and dangerous) plus a dimension full of dinosaurs!
Like i said- Bargain.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Straight Out of Bedlam
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Bedlam City
by Gavin C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/19/2009 09:38:57
Excellent stuff. I bought this a while ago along with 'Straight Out Of Bedlam' and have to say i'm impressed.This a great Iron Age setting full of character, black humour and unique characters. All credit to the author who managed to make a slot-in-anywhere setting which is very hard to do. (Compare this to other city books, especially Authumn Arbour, to see what i mean). I'm actually using this book in my Champions setting, it's the city just down the road from Millenium City- big contrast!
Good Points: As i said, great characters but add to that a great 'secret history' for the players to uncover, fleshed -out neighbourhoods and a comprihensive look at all the organised crime in the city. More importatly it captures a certain flavour which means most GM's will know how to describe to sights, sounds and tone of the city very quickly.
On top of all that you've got boat loads of scerario ideas to flesh out.

Bad Points: Has a few, apart from the occasional typo's and such. If you've gotten any other products from PBWG then you know how the characters are written- they tend to be twists on traditional roles. So no Jim Gordon to rely on here-unless you put him in yourself. Also some of the characters are repeats from other products (Hammer Of Justice, Doctor Scorch, The Nowhere Men) which is kind of annoying- although they do fit the setting like a glove.

Overall- Get it and i'd also recomend Straight Out Of Bedlam as well for more badguys (not repeated), adventures, NPC'S secret history stuff and Horrible Secret's.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Bedlam City
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Strange Magic
by John M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/16/2008 09:24:46
Disclaimer: I have not yet run this adventure. Nonetheless, I plan to do so, and set it in Bedlam City.

Strange Magic is a straight-forward adventure done up in magical monster-y trappings. The characters are warped and though some of them cross lines I wouldn't cross (really--a cybernetic werewolf?) I think they'll be fun, and I think there's a good chance that various characters will recur. Non-powered NPCs will recur and be planted in foreshadowing.

The trappings make it an ideal adventure for Hallowe'en, and the exploration of the house can be an adventure after the adventure: it isn't required as part of the main plot, but really, someone should deal with the house...

The only downside someone else pointed out: if you run this immediately after Bedlam in Bedlam, players might notice that both adventures end in what are essentially dungeon crawls. Overall, this looks like a fun evening or three, and worth the money to a harried, hurried GM.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Strange Magic
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Bedlam City
by John M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/15/2008 10:12:43
I'm running a campaign in Bedlam City right now, and having a blast with all the excesses of the Iron Age but the technology/supers of the modern era. Excellent work.

Lots of information here--this is a huge book. There are story ideas on nearly every page-sometimes explicitly identified as such, sometimes implicit. This is well worth the money, and (because there's no universe) it's easy to drop this setting into another campaign setting.

One of the things I look for in an Iron Age setting is a warped sense of humor, because I think that if the Iron Age is going to comment on our excesses, it needs a sense of humor. Bedlam City has it in spades.

Bedlam City also has all of the other things we might find reprehensible, which make it an excellent place for characters to try to make a difference.

Flaws: I've found a small number of typos, including one cut-and-paste error, but that's very good for a product of this type. I do wish there had been a bit more on GMing a Bedlam City-only campaign, because I think there might be too much information here just for an occasional setting. However, GMs looking for less information can get the adventure Bedlam in Bedlam, which started the whole Bedlam City thing, and has the basic information.

Overall, I'm very pleased with this purchase, and am considering getting a print copy through Lulu.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Bedlam City
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Bedlam City
by Michael N. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/12/2008 20:16:11
I recently purchased Bedlam City. I should mention that I normally despise Iron Age settings, but I had an idea that I wanted to try out for a story-arc in my campaign, so I decided to try Bedlam out. I have to say, this is one of the best superhero roleplaying supplements I've ever had the good fortune to read. I'm particularly impressed with the emphasis the product places on systemic racism, privatization of government services, union-busting, and police brutality. It's infinitely better than similar settings like Hudson City. Well done.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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