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Thrilling Tales 2nd Edition (Savage Worlds)
$24.95 $12.48
Average Rating:4.3 / 5
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Thrilling Tales 2nd Edition (Savage Worlds)
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Thrilling Tales 2nd Edition (Savage Worlds)
Publisher: Adamant Entertainment
by Matt J. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/15/2014 11:33:30
Thrilling Tales is the quintessential “Savage Pulp” book. Whether you’re a pulp vet or new to the genre this book has it all. The first chapter provides background on what pulp was and the genres it encompassed. This is followed by a timeline of historic events from the 1930’s to help fuel adventure or campaign ideas based on what was happening at the time.

The new edges and hindrances really fit the setting and for the most part would work in other Savage Worlds settings as well. The character types suggested in Thrilling Tales provide the framework for just about any pulp archetype you can think of.

Thrilling Tales introduces a few new mechanics to Savage Worlds which are optional but you’d be doing the setting a great injustice by not working them into your game. Examples of two of these are stunts and story declarations. A stunt is an over the top flashier and more difficult way of accomplishing an action that if successful results in bennies for the player. Story declarations allow the players to spend a benny to shape and direct small aspects of the story.

The last section I want to touch on is the adventure generator. By rolling a series of dice across a number of tables you will end up with a well plotted adventure broken down by acts and supplying everything for you from story hooks to plot twists.

I can’t say enough great things about Thrilling Tales! If you are in the least bit interested in pulp or have always been curious but didn’t know where to start this is the best book out there.

[5 of 5 Stars!]
Thrilling Tales 2nd Edition (Savage Worlds)
Publisher: Adamant Entertainment
by Marcus B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/16/2011 08:10:19
I never was a huge Fan of Pulp RPG but this converted me! Great inspiring book. I especially love the Adventure generator which really does inspire and delivers weird, exciting, pulpy adventures and the NPCs for it too. Great overall job!

[5 of 5 Stars!]
Thrilling Tales 2nd Edition (Savage Worlds)
Publisher: Adamant Entertainment
by Warren S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/29/2010 17:19:58
The Savage Worlds RPG is perfect for a pulp campaign. Trilling Tales 2nd Edition (Savage Worlds) makes the job super easy for a prospective Game Master. It's also a fantastic pulp sourcebook.

[5 of 5 Stars!]
Thrilling Tales 2nd Edition (Savage Worlds)
Publisher: Adamant Entertainment
by Andrew W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/19/2010 19:16:13
Savage Worlds doesn't need too much help to do pulp, but this guide has some really fun supporting material, including new edges and hindrances, some alternate rules to increase the daring do, and and expanded equipment list, with black and white photos of 1930's weapons and vehicles.

It also has a great random adventure table, some sample villains, and a series of linked pulp adventures that form a complete series, "The Crimson Empire."

Since it is basically a collection of converted materials for Savage Worlds, it's a bit of a strange mix. But most of the info is useful, the new pulp rules seem to work well, and of course, it sports the cover of one of the greatest pulp games in history!

[4 of 5 Stars!]
Thrilling Tales 2nd Edition (Savage Worlds)
Publisher: Adamant Entertainment
by Katrina R. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/14/2010 07:15:41
This is an amazing book that is a must have for Savage Worlds Pulp. Not only does it give you all the information you need to run a pulp flavored game, but it also gives a large amount of info on the 1930's themselves. The section on 1930 styles cars and the bullet pointed list of historical events of the 1930s were especially useful.

[5 of 5 Stars!]
Thrilling Tales 2nd Edition (Savage Worlds)
Publisher: Adamant Entertainment
by William G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/08/2010 23:57:31
Thoroughly enjoyable product.

Thrilling Tales is a setting guide for delivering your Savage Worlds game in a Pulp Setting.

Character Archetypes
An entertaining and informative overview of the different types of heroes and villains on the genre and how they would be constructed in a Savage Worlds system.
There is a very good section of new edges & hindrances which is helps to both convey the pulp feeling of the characters and encourage pulp action and behaviour from the players.
I enjoyed this section and thought that each edge and hindrance had a purpose and contributed to the setting.

Equipment Guide
A selection of period guns and vehicles. An interesting mix at that. I assume this section is meant to be an addition to your normal equipment lists but I am unsure. There are some peculiarities which irked me:
(1) There is no Thompson sub-machinegun, but there is an MP38? There is also no Browning Automatic Rifle (BAR) but there is a type of Spanish army rifle I have never heard of. I just thought some of the omissions where very peculiar in light of some of the oddities included. Not being an aficionado of the era, or pulp "genre", I will just say it felt a little bit odd to me as a layman - perhaps an explanation as to why the weapons included were chosen would have help to assuage my doubts.
(2) The number of cars! There are multiple pages of sedans and sports cars! Why so many, and why so many randomly sourced pictures of the vehicles? If Car chases are such an important aspect of Pulp, perhaps giving an interesting car chase system/mechanic that utilised the minor variations in the statistics of the cars would have helped. I understand that providing pictures of such period cars would be helpful to players whose grandparents were not even born in that era, but the non-uniformity of the pictures and contrast from the rest of the comic book's excellent sketch art throughout the rest of the product gave me a "desperate slapped in" feeling about this section.
In general I agree that the equipment section needed to have these period items, but I found this part of the book the least enjoyable.

The Adventure Generator
By far the most outstanding part of this product.
The Adventure Generator is a set of "Random Tables" consulted in an order prescribed in accordance with the Rules of Pulp as laid down by one of the pioneer writers of the Industry. Sounds a mouthful, but the results are fantastic!
Each adventure is divided up into 4 "acts", which each act having its own requirements for what should take place in it.
The tables provide the inspiration and you are meant to link it all together to create a coherent (if somewhat crazy) story/adventure.
an example of the Generator in action:
After rolling up the evil scheme, villain, supporting characters and starting location got:
a Businessman scheming to take over another business, with the adventure taking place in an unusual Location (such as the sky) and the adventure would start "in media res" (in the middle of the action). Supporting characters in this tale would be an attractive female pilot, a fat evil businessman, and an old but helpful mad scientist.
The First Act would involve a chase in the air complicated by environment.
The Generator later revealed the initial scheme was really a ruse in order to trick the heroes into performing an ancient ritual that would accomplish some evil purpose for the villain...and that the beautiful pilot was in fact an evil henchman...er, woman, working for the sinister puppet master! There were also serveal chases and fights along the way, with the climax taking place on top of the Skyscrapers of New York!
This section was the primarily (and sole) reason I purchased this product and I was thoroughly impressed with it.
Beware the tables are designed for 1920-1940s era classic Pulp settings, so is geared toward ancient lost cities and Manhattan style cities - would suit superheroe games, but easily modified to your tastes.

a quite substantial section on classic Pulp Villains such as Nazi's and Oriental Masterminds. A lot of background information to help bring the party nemesis to life, and plenty of hooks and ideas on how to use them in your games. Also some useful stat blocks for the bosses, henchmen, and mooks.

The Plot Point Campaign
I wouldn't call it that. This is actually 3 independent adventures which can be linked together. I haven't road tested them yet, but on reading through them I liked the later two more than the first one which I felt player might see as too contrived, but overall quite enjoyable.

All together Thrilling Tales gives you a very good grasp of how to organise, construct and run very entertaining Pulp style adventures with the Savage World system

I give this product 4 stars.
3 for presentation, content, and execution - a very respectable coverage of the subject matter.
+1 for the Adventure Generator - innovative use of standard "random tables" with coherent structure to produce a quite useful tool for beginner and veteran GMs alike.

[4 of 5 Stars!]
Thrilling Tales 2nd Edition (Savage Worlds)
Publisher: Adamant Entertainment
by Dave M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/27/2010 11:52:57
Originally posted on UK Role Players: http://www.ukroleplayers.com/reviews/thrilling-tales/

Thrilling Tales is a 256 page, 8.5"x5.5" paperback, pulp supplement for Savage Worlds published by Adamant Entertainment. It is available in both print ($24.95/£14.99 from Cubicle 7) and PDF ($14.95/£9.67 from DriveThruRPG and other PDF stores). This review is of the print version.

The front and back covers are full-colour with evocative artwork of the genre, while the interior is black and white. Each page has a background that makes the pages appear to be from a dog-eared book, matching the cover (which hass fake creases and rips printed on the edges) and the layout is, for the most part, double-columned. The interior art comprises a mixture of, what looks to be, newly commissioned art, original art from the era, and photographs. It is all appropriate and adds to the general pulp feel very well. The content is split up into eleven chapters: Pulp Adventure; A Timeline of the 1930s; Characters; Equipment; Pulp Gaming Rules; Pulp Villains; Pulp Villains - The Nazis; Pulp Villains - The Thugee; Pulp Villains - Perils of the Orient; Adventure Generator; and The Crimson Emperor (a "Plot Point" campaign).

The Pulp Adventure chapter takes up 11 pages and starts with a short piece of fiction before delving into a brief history of pulp and the different genres within it.

A Timeline of the 1930s covers, over 5 pages, brief bullet-points of major events occurring in that decade. Any one of these could easily be used as the backdrop to an adventure - or even part of the adventure itself and serves as a good starting point for further research should the reader require it.

In the Characters chapter, comprising 47 pages, we are provided with 18 archetypes that players may wish to follow when creating their characters (ranging from Ace Reporter, through G-Man and Mad Scientist, to Trusted Sidekick). Each contains a short piece of fiction fitting the archetype as well as suggested skills, edges, and hindrances. While it appears that these are aimed at players, GMs will find them useful as well when it comes to creating their villainous NPCs (indeed, some of the archetypes aren't ones that players (as heroes) are likely to follow anyway (such as Mastermind and Mobster). Character creation rules follow this, although as this is a licenced Savage Worlds product, this is limited to stating that they follow the rules written in the Savage Worlds Explorer's Edition except for starting rank - Thrilling Tales characters start, at the minimum, at Seasoned rank and may be higher depending on the number of players and the type of game being run. As you would expect, there are some new Hindrances and Edges that fit the setting (such as Glass Jaw (which gives you a penalty to soak rolls) and Deus Ex Machina (which allows you to spend a Bennie to escape death - in keeping with the cliffhangers from the serials of old)).

Equipment provides 17 pages of statistics and information on a range of 1930s weapons and vehicles (including a zeppelin and U-Boat!) - the vast majority of which are accompanied by photographs depicting the actual items.

The Pulp Gaming Rules chapter provides in 6 pages, rules additions and amendments to better fit a pulp adventure. These include changes to the way incapacitation works, introducing stunts (whereby the player can make things, voluntarily, more difficult for their character in exchange for the chance to gain more Bennies) and story declarations (whereby players can spend a Benny to try and declare certain thins about the setting and story), adding in two more layers of NPC (Henchmen (who are Extras but with a Wild Die) and Mooks (who are Extras but without edges or hindrances and who always go "down" after being successfully damaged - no Shaken for them!), and, my personal favourite, Gloating (whereby the villain, once he has captured the players, must make a check or blurt out his entire plan).

The Pulp Villains chapter, and the following three chapters, covers the type of opposition you can throw at players in a pulp game. The first chapter provides four different villains with suitable adventure hooks for each. The following chapters go into greater detail about the quintessential pulp villains: Nazis; the Thugee; and the Orient. The real world history of each group is provided with enough detail to enable GMs to use them in their games whilst also providing sample NPCs (from Mook level and up) and interesting adventure hooks.

In the Adventure Generator chapter you will find 15 pages that provide an easy to use generator for adventures - for just that time when you're asked to run a game at short notice.

Finally, we have The Crimson Emperor, the "Plot Point" campaign. Unfortunately, it's not a Plot Point campaign in the same sense as those found in the likes of 50 Fathoms, but five linked scenarios which are nicely put together and will provide for quite a few nights entertainment.

So, that's the overview of the book, but how good is it?

Thrilling Tales is a very good genre book for Savage Worlds. There are some minor typos and editing errors (the most noticable of which is a hangover from it's d20 origins) but these do not detract from the content. Indeed, if I had to say something negative about the book, the only thing I can find is that the naming of The Crimson Emperor as a Plot Point campaign. This is just me nit-picking though and I really like Thrilling Tales. It's size is a big plus and I've found myself wishing more companies would print books at this size.

The game mechanics additions are balanced and complement the gaming style aimed for perfectly, while the pictures of the vast majority of equipment make it easy to visualise things. Likewise, the historical information on the various villain groups presented helps to ground things in reality - even if you do decide to add in weird science later ;)

My favourite part of Thrilling Tales though is the Adventure Generator. It's something so simple, yet so detailed. Throw a few options together, add five minutes of thinking and you have an adventure for a session or two. Perfect.

Overall, Thrilling Tales is one of the best Savage Worlds settings I've read so far and I'm looking forward to being able to use it in the future.

[5 of 5 Stars!]
Thrilling Tales 2nd Edition (Savage Worlds)
Publisher: Adamant Entertainment
by Guilherme M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/21/2010 11:10:51
Its a good book with the conversion of the almost all the stuff found at the d20 products line.

[4 of 5 Stars!]
Thrilling Tales 2nd Edition (Savage Worlds)
Publisher: Adamant Entertainment
by Thomas B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/03/2010 22:54:24
Pros: The adventure generator is awesome. Just so, so much fun. The art felt very evocative. Whole pages spent defining pulp archetypes, in game terms, which is very useful. Plus, new edges and hindrances.

Cons: I didn't care for some of the art. As well, there were references to "Advanced Classes" in the book, which I assume were left over from the conversion from the previous version of the game.

Overview: I bought Spirit of the Century, and really wanted to like it for my pulp fun...then I fount Two-Fisted Tales from Precis Intermedia Games, and found it to be way more to my taste. I bought Thrilling Tales on a whim, mostly because it was $1 (during a sale) and uses Savage Worlds, which I love...wow. I hope to use this book a ton over the next several years.

[5 of 5 Stars!]
Thrilling Tales 2nd Edition (Savage Worlds)
Publisher: Adamant Entertainment
by Stu V. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 12/25/2009 02:16:43
I purchased this book after receiving a recommendation from one of our podcast's listeners.

I'm preparing to run a Savage Worlds pulp-era game, and was unfamiliar with the genre.

It is a very complete source book for the pulp era. Lots of adventure ideas, bad guys, monsters, etc.

One of the best features is the chapter on the formula of pulp stories. It divides the typical pulp adventure into four "acts," and describes what sorts of things happen in each act. Additionally, it includes several tables to come up with villains, their nefarious plots, plot twists, etc.

It sounds little goofy to randomly roll up your adventure; however, I tried it for my first adventure, and the results I got gave me all sorts of ideas I wouldn't have come up with otherwise. It really is a valuable resource for GMs, and it's applicable to other genres and other systems.

[5 of 5 Stars!]
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