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Fudge Treats: Shoujo Manga
Publisher: Avalon Game Company
by Jeff M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/02/2011 23:41:48
I recently picked this up at a special price and I am glad that I did. Shoujo Manga means, "comic books for girls." It is not a setting I had sought to explore at my gaming table before, and I am still not certain that I am ready to run a fully romance based campaign or anything like that, but this small 48 page package has enough good stuff going for it that I am able to give it high marks even though for me, the setting wasn't it's greatest selling point. There are other Shoujo Manga games available, and they may explore this genre more fully, I am not sure, but I know that beyond a collection of skills inspired by the genre and some advice on different campaigns based on this sort of manga, the game rules themselves don't offer anything novel or different that will make resolving romance based situations more interesting or dynamic.

What is here is a solid representation of an Anime themed generic RPG adventure game using the Fudge system. It's quick, it's lite, it's easy to understand and read, and I do plan to use it at my gaming table for a science fiction campaign I am running, because for a rules lite generic RPG it does what it does very well. I have read a handful of Fudge iterations. (I found FATE to be too complex in it's presentation.) I want something that I can reference quickly without becoming too bogged down in the details. Fudge Treats: Shoujo Manga provides what is, for me at least, an ideal level of complexity and detail. The rules for character creation are straight forward and easy to understand. They seem diverse enough to allow for a good variety of character types.

The game is complete except for "Supernormal Powers." The game mentions future Fudge Treats: A Magical Girls one, and a Super Powers one, that will fill this void. But some more examples in this area would have been welcome, and I have looked but find no trace of the other mentioned products. (This product is more than 6 months old, maybe it hasn't sold well enough to justify the promised additions.) Also, although most of the rules are summarised in a handy appendix, there is no character sheet. Finally some of the full page art obscures game text making those pages more difficult to read on my Kindle, but it's not terrible. However, I do feel that future products might consider avoiding this. Otherwise, I found all the art work to be pleasing and appropriate to the subject matter.

So, no character sheet or supernormal powers, and no ground breaking innovations that make this a must buy, but it is a strong accessible iteration of the Fudge system for Shoujo Anime themed role play. I think it might be ideal for younger players, especially girls (at whom Shoujo Anime is targeted,) or for people like myself who want a nice easy version of Fudge to adapt and use within their own setting, as it seems flexible enough for this and worthy of adapting. For providing me with that, I feel the product lived up to it's promise as a "Fudge Treat" and certainly it is worth the modest price. - 4 stars.

Jeff Moore

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Fudge Treats: Shoujo Manga
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The Dagger - Adventure 1 from the Tales from the Inn series
Publisher: Obligatory Inn Press
by Jeffrey M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/07/2009 17:02:47
This is a very simple (and short) introductory adventure. I bought this some time ago and had forgotten where I had gotten it. I was thinking that it was a "free" product. It is in most ways just that basic. The thing is, I am writing this review because I find myself running this adventure for a gaming group for the third time. (I did a search on the document so that I could thank the authors... which brought me here.)

This adventure is very basic and simple on the surface. It includes a very standard, "You are approached in the inn by ..." introduction; and a small and very basic "dungeon" area. The thing is, the simplicity of this adventure is at the core of its appeal, and it's also quite deceptive. The adventure sets up a situation that provides some interesting moral questions and a number of challenging role-play opportunities for the DM and the players.

It's written for third edition D&D but I am running it for the third time and each time that I have run this adventure I have run it for a different system and none of these has been D&D. This again can be attributed as a boon of the game's simplicity as it is so easily adapted.

Page count is small. It's a quick read. It's very basic and yet deceptively deep. The true test of an adventure isn't it's length or complexity ... it's whether or not it is played. I have run this adventure for beginning players twice already, and return to it this week for the third time, because quite simply ... it plays great!

It's a single evenings entertainment. It's great for beginning characters. It's a good basic D&D style adventure that could be adapted to any other system with little effort.

I came here to thank the authors for providing me with an enjoyable evenings adventuring (for the third time.) And for $3.00 I can't imagine a better bargain.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Dagger - Adventure 1 from the Tales from the Inn series
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Publisher Reply:
We are glad you enjoyed this adventure and we hope that you continue to enjoy it in the future. Thank you for your kind words, we really do appreciate them! Game on!
Truth & Justice
Publisher: Atomic Sock Monkey Press
by Jeffrey M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/19/2005 00:00:00
I read a preview for Truth and Justice on Daedalus and it made me curious. Check it out, I think it will give you a good idea of what to expect.
http://www.chimera.info/daedalus/articles/spring2005/tru-
thandjustice.html

I have played many supers RPGs over the past several years. But the number of offerings that have appeared recently is almost overwhelming. T&J is a fine addition to the genre that stands out in the crowd. It uses a clean easy game mechanic that is flexible and easy to learn. It introduces some original ideas mechanically that I think are unique to the supers RPG (like the injuring of Aspects).

The game is not a number cruncher and creating characters is a joy not a chore. I bought the print on demand version and it has some random tables for character generation in the back that will allow anyone to throw together a character in minutes, even if they have no idea what they want.

The content of the book is friendly and easy to read. The author is definitely a comic book fan who obviously loves the genre and has studied and understands it. The advise on running, playing, enjoying supers roleplay is excellent even if you aren't interested in the rules-lite style of the game mechanic. T&J is the "Understanding Comics (Scott McCloud)" of RPG's.

I should mention that of the dozens of offerings that I have purchased from RPGNow.com this is the first "Print on Demand" that I have bought. Wow! Was I impressed. I was expecting something spiral bound or in a binder similar to what I might make myself at Kinko's, but no! This is a proper square bound paperback book. And it is gorgeous! Well worth the money. If you haven't bought POD before, do yourself a favor and give it a try.



LIKED: Game system easy and flexible. Character creation was fun! Book contained lots of useful information for me, even if I never run the game. It was just a good read.

DISLIKED: I wasn't that impressed with a lot of the art, honestly. Just not my style. But a game isn't played because of its art. The cover was nice.

QUALITY: Excellent

VALUE: Very Satisfied


Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Truth & Justice
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Living Legends
Publisher: Monkey House Games
by Jeffrey M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/02/2005 00:00:00
As a one time player of "Villains and Vigilantes," I was quite pleased to see a superhero RPG offering by designer Jeff Dee here. I was even happier to learn that "Living Legends" is considered to be a "Villains and Vigilantes" sequel. So after a brief bit of web research into the product I decided to give "Living Legends" a try.

"Living Legends" as a superhero RPG is something of an old style offering. The layout of the document is very much in keeping with the tradition of the original "Villains and Vigilantes" and I instantly felt as though I was in familiar territory. However, though "Living Legends" may feel like familiar ground, the game system itself is not "Villains and Vigilantes" at all but something completely different. "Living Legends" is an entirely new game set in the "Villains and Vigilantes" universe.

The 160 page document was a surprisingly quick and easy read. It is well organized and easy to understand. The casual browser may be daunted by the dozens of random tables that permeate the volume, but don't fear. Players will reference a table to see which die is needed when using a given power or skill, but this information is transferred to their character sheet and the table becomes superfluous instantly. No worry that you'll spend your entire time with your nose in the book. The new game mechanic is simple, elegant and easy to master.

The majority of tables are there to support an optional random hero generation method. I love this! I find creating a character for a superhero game to be daunting. Unless you know exactly what you want, it's like someone handed you a blank sheet of paper and said, "Okay, write a book." There's just too much. The random option is a perfect solution. Even if you don't use what you roll, the process will help spark new ideas, guide your development and prime your creative juices. Bravo!

Jeff Dee's art is as gorgeous as ever and the Living Legends cover is absolutely beautiful. I printed it out on a color laser printer and it's magnificent. All in all, I could not be happier. As a fan of superhero RPG's in general and "Villains and Vigilantes" in particular I find "Living Legends" to be a superb offering.


LIKED: Random Hero Creation is a great option... no more floundering, wondering what kind of character to create. Roll up a few and pick what you like! Also, great Jeff Dee artwork! The cover is beautiful!

DISLIKED: Nothing. Really!


QUALITY: Excellent

VALUE: Very Satisfied


Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Living Legends
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BASH! Basic Action Super Heroes (Original Edition)
Publisher: Basic Action Games
by Jeffrey M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/20/2005 00:00:00
If it looks like Super Heroes on the cover, I will buy it, and have. I love RPG's, and I love Super Heroes, and have played many different RPG Supers games.

It is amazing how so many game designs equate complexity with quality. Unfortunately in the world of comic book Super Heroes this is especially true. In a genre clogged with games systems that range from simply overly complicated to down right unplayable, BASH is a welcome and refreshing change. Points based? Yes. Full of options? Yes. Complicated? Not at all! (Hurray!)

BASH has all the strengths of a good Supers RPG with none of the weaknesses. Character creation is as fast and easy as any that I've seen for this genre without sacrificing diversity. And the actual game play is easy to learn. A group I introduced to the system were playing like pros in seconds! And it all works!! All of it!

BASH has become my Super Hero RPG of choice. I urge you to give it a try. Buy it! Download it! Read it! And for Goodness Sakes, Play it!! This game translates to the table top the way an RPG should. It's not just a pretty collection of numbers on a page. It is a very friendly, very playable RPG.

The downloaded PDF is actually two copies of the game. One has graphics (some very attractive super hero themed black and white clip art), and one is without (print friendly). So the actual game manual only constitutes about 30 pages. Thirty pages is all that is needed. The BASH system is both eloquent and functional, and it doesn't require additional padding.

This new version of the rules has been reorganized to make it easier to use, and includes a few rules additions and clarifications (and a cover with greatly improved coloring). These were needed and welcome changes. I honestly can't think of a better Super Hero themed RPG, that I have played.

This is the best.


LIKED: Clean eloquent game system! Easy to learn! Easy to play! Great character creation!

DISLIKED: Not one thing.

QUALITY: Excellent

VALUE: Very Satisfied


Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
BASH! Basic Action Super Heroes (Original Edition)
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Publisher Reply:
Thanks, Jeff. We aim to please! Be on the lookout for more BASH products in the near future! BASH Fantasy is very near completion, and Megapolis: A City of Supers is also well under way, and expected to be out this summer!
BASH! Basic Action Super Heroes
Publisher: Basic Action Games
by Jeffrey M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/21/2005 00:00:00
I ran this game for my group this past weekend. Overall we were very pleased with the system. Character creation is easy and quick. The game system was easy to teach to my players and we were off and running in minutes.

This game is Supers-Lite. It is a 51 page PDF download, but it's split 50/50 between a print friendly version and a version with illustrations (all black and white). So there's only about 25 pages of real content.

The Basic Action System uses a few 6 sided dice and it works. I had not played a system like it before, but it is well suited to the genre. Overall characters seem well balanced.

The orginization of the content isn't very intuitive, but a GM who is experienced in reading RPG rules will have no problem finding what they need or filling in the holes.

If you are looking for a quick Supers game to fill a Saturday night one-shot, give this a try.


LIKED: Good selection of powers and options.
Rules-Lite but not dumbed down or watered down.
Quick read and easy to grasp. Easy to convert from the written word to the table-top. Very playable.

DISLIKED: Coloring on the cover was spotty, amaturish... may push some readers away.
Some rules-holes need to be filled in by an the gaming group.


QUALITY: Very Good

VALUE: Very Satisfied


Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
BASH! Basic Action Super Heroes
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Publisher Reply:
Thank you for your kind words. We plan on releasing more modules for the system that will also include the core rules. We encourage customers to write us with suggestions for new powers, skills, and advantages as well as rules they would like to see in future incarnations of the game. This is a system that is made to be built upon, and we plan to include our customers in the building process. You can look forward to a new and improved edition of the rules that will address these holes to be included in our next module. Please note, anybody who buys these rules will recieve a 3 dollar discount on their next BASH product!
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