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Alienage District Map
Publisher: Columbia Games Inc.
by Alex G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/11/2018 11:58:59

The Alienage is the foreigners' quarter of the city of Cherafir in the Kingdom of Melderyn. This map is best used with the Harnworld supplements City of Cherafir and Kingdom of Melderyn.

Just watching the layers appearing in the opened map is a pleasure. The details are consistent and follow the standard for cartography established across the entire Harnworld line.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Alienage District Map
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City of Coranan Player Map
Publisher: Columbia Games Inc.
by Alex G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/11/2018 11:55:22

A free player map supplement to accompany City of Coranan, This zoomable electronic map could be used by a Gamemaster for their own non-Harnworld setting, though it is best used as intended - for games set on Harn, in the city of Coranan, the capital of the Thardic Republic.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
City of Coranan Player Map
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Harn Region Map
Publisher: Columbia Games Inc.
by Alex G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/11/2018 11:36:34

Practically every Harnworld / Harnmaster gamer and Gamemaster has at least one of these maps in hardcopy. This iconic regional map covers the entire island of Harn and the surrounding smaller islands. Cities, settlements, countries and natural features are listed, along with locations of interest such as Gargun (Harnic orc) lairs, enigmatic ancient Earthmaster sites such as Telumar, Ridow, and so on. Terrain features, rivers, lakes, mountains, swamps and so on are displayed.

This electronic map has two advantages over the printed version: it is zoomable, and there are no worries about it getting torn or damaged by coffee stains. This is offset by the disadvantage that you cannot lay it out on a table like one of the printed maps.

Nonetheless, this amazing map is the best start for any games or Gamemaster wanting to enter the world of Harn.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Harn Region Map
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Harn Map Keys
Publisher: Columbia Games Inc.
by Alex G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/11/2018 10:59:27

This four-page article, titled Keys and Legends to the Maps of Hârnworld, provides detailed instructions on how to read both the interior and exterior maps used across the entire Harnworld range.

Harnworld has a bewildering range of maps, on the regional scale (e.g. the Harn Regional Map, the Ivinia Regional Map, the Lythia Continent Map and so on), the atlas scale (such as the labelled Atlas Maps available here, identified by grid references such as D9 and J5, and so on), the local scale (such as found in supplements such as Chyrefal Castle) and interior maps (which can be found in every location article). These maps are consistent, recording details such as the exterior and interior sizes of rooms, the locations of hidden and secret doors and traps, even floor and ceiling heights, in exactly the same way, with the precision of a professional draughtsman. This article allows you to interpret the maps, at every scale, across the entire Harnworld range.

The article can also be useful to any budding cartographer who wants to create detailed maps and diagrams for their own non-Harnworld settings, because they allow you to create consistent details applicable to any maps you design, whether for dungeons or for wilderness encounters.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Harn Map Keys
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Shiran's Pamesani Arena Map
Publisher: Columbia Games Inc.
by Alex G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/11/2018 10:09:27

Newcomers to Harnworld and Harnmaster might think that this is just another "gladiatorial arena" map and move on. However, this is not just any arena - this is the arena of the Pamesani Games in Shiran, the "City of Sins" in the Thardic Republic of Western Harn.

On its own, the map is useful to Gamemasters who could use it for gladiatorial games in their own settings; but this map is best used in conjunction with the Pamesani Games Harnworld supplement, and the Harnworld supplement City of Shiran, both of which can be purchased here separately. The Games supplement describes the culture of the Pamesani Games, and the city supplement puts the arena into its geographical context within the city and the greater Thardic Republic.

Other useful supplements include Republic of Tharda, for a detailed look at the Thardic Republic in which Shiran is based; the Ivashu Bestiary supplement, for a look at the beasts which fight in the arena (or Harnmaster Bestiary for a look at all the other beasts and monsters which can turn up); and Harnmaster Religion for a detailed look at both Agrik (whose Order of Pameshlu the Insatiable runs the Pamesani Games) and Ilvir (the god who dwells on Harn, and who spawns the Ivashu monsters which fight the gladiators.

Last, but by no means least, Harnmaster 3rd Edition - also available here on RPGNow - offers a detailed, ultrarealistic look at combat, in all its lethal glory, as well as character generation rules to allow you to create characters to fight in this arena.

However, if all you want is a quick, instant map of a gladiatorial arena for your own setting, this is one of the most detailed maps of its kind going. The beauty of this map is that you can use it for any system you like.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Shiran's Pamesani Arena Map
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"Edge of the Wilds" - 100+ scenarios for rural adventures!
Publisher: True Mask Games
by Alex G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/07/2018 13:00:46

Adventures in quiet rural areas? Surely not. And yet, any aficionado of the British TV show "Midsomer Murders" and any fan of the movies Children of The Corn and The Wicker Man would tell you that blood flows just as freely in quiet cornfields as it does in dark, gritty urban alleyways or monstrous lairs in the wilderness.

This system-neutral book presents 100+ story seeds and plot hooks for fantasy games set in rural areas - the buffer zones between urban settings and true wildernesses, the battle field between manmade civilisation and wild Nature. These story seeds encapsulate a frontier spirit that distinguishes the scenarios in "Edge of The Wilds" from the first book of the series, "Dark Cities."

As with "Dark Cities," some of these story hooks and story seeds are funny, some of them are dark, some of them are straightforward, some of them are not what they seem - and every last one of them would make for a compelling and entertaining session or two in any fantasy campaign.

I highly recommend this book for the DM, Gamemaster or referee who wants to give the players a run for their money even in "quiet, bucolic little places" where one would imagine that nothing much supposedly happens at all.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
"Edge of the Wilds" - 100+ scenarios for rural adventures!
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The Great Rift
Publisher: Mongoose
by Alex G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/29/2017 12:06:08

This Mongoose Traveller pack is huge, and its topic is stellar rifts - the vast, empty spaces between spurs of the Galaxy, and between regions of the galaxy where the stars are more densely populated. In particular, one rift stands out - The Great Rift, that region of empty space light years across, after which the book is named, and which is the topic of most of this pack.

This is the pack for explorers and Travellers crossing, among others, the vast expanse that is The Great Rift.

So, then, what does this ambitious Traveller pack contain?

There are, at least in the PDF bundle currently available, ten PDFs. The first four are listed Books - Book 1 - The Great Rift; Book 2 - Reft; Book 3 - Touchstone / Afawahisa (a sector book for those two sectors); and Book 4 - DSE Handbook.

The rest are maps and Sector Maps - one of a solar system called the Phobetor System, found in Touchstone Sector; and Sector Maps of Afawahisa, Corridor, Reft, the Riftspan Reaches and finally Touchstone.

Book 1 introduces the concept of Rifts, and details the expeditions which traversed them, the explorations which have been conducted, the weird phenomena that occur in Rifts such as Shoals, Reefs, Deeps and one horror story about a unique Jumpspace phenomenon called The Fischer Trench, which could give experienced players nightmares.

The people who cross the Rifts are detailed, and they include native species who have never been found outside the Great Rift, and a rare gigantic spaceborn alien species which has made Riftspace its home. Basically, think of Gormundganders from Star Trek: Discovery.

The rest of Book 1 is a detailed, canon look at Corridor and The Riftspan Reaches Sectors. The subsector maps include locations of the anomalies listed in "Features of The Great Rift," and both sides of the Rift are explored in detail, so expect a lot of Aslan worlds and subsector names to feature heavily. The Corridor and Riftspan Reaches PDF Sector Maps, of course, are directly linked to Book One.

Books Two and Three cover, respectively, Reft, Touchstone and Afawahisa. The map on p. 3 of Book 1 shows these Sectors' positions in the Great Rift relative to one another and to such familiar Sectors as The Spinward Marches, The Trojan Reach, The Beyond and Foreven Sectors.

As with Book One, these books have detailed Sector Maps tying in to each; Reft with Book Two, and Touchstone and Afawahisa with Book Three. Each sector's history is listed, followed by detailed subsector-by-subsector descriptions. Reft has the Islands, and an unfolding tragedy of cultural contamination; Touchstone has the Imperium, the Aslan, the occasional Zhodani expedition, Droyne, Darrians, Vargr, plus native species, disturbing ancient relics and a number of very old secrets, plus the Phobetor star system which has its own separate map; and Afawahisa is similar, but with more Aslan influences, more and different mysteries to solve, and some truly, terrifyingly empty subsectors which would be death traps for a starship that Misjumps into them.

Did I mention the colour? Each map and illustration is in colour. The planet illustrations are stunning.

Book Four, DSE Handbook, is worth the price of the whole bundle alone. Ever since the first edition Mongoose Publishing edition of Book 3: Scout came out, Traveller fans have been crying out for a detailed Star System Creation book.

Book Four, DSE Handbook, is that book.

DSE stands for Deep Space Exploration, and that is the theme of this book. DSE Handbook covers the processes involved in exploring strange new worlds, from conducting the initial surveys of the targeted hex down to the first tentative footsteps on a planet's surface. Book Four covers exploration itself, followed by a detailed look at phenomena such as black holes, neutron stars, novas, supernovas, nebulae, anomalies, rogue objects and so on.

The next section is Expanded Star System Creation, going into the level of detail that Traveller players and Referees have been lusting after since Book 3: Scout.

Book Four rounds off with lists of new sorts of High Guard technology which give naval architects even more options than before, for ships designed for the deepest kind of deep space exploration.

Speaking of new ships, new spacegoing vessels and starships feature in the four books, including Jump-6 ships. Further, there are also stats for vehicles, animals and alien sophont species.

To summarise, calling this book "lavish" would be an understatement. It is a sumptuously detailed sourcebook for the Great Rift and other Rifts, filled with strange civilisations, ancient mysteries, wonders to satiate desires both subtle and gross, and horrors to chill one to the bone. If a Referee wishes to run campaigns based on exploration and trading with worlds which are off the map, this is the pack to buy yourself (along with the Core Rulebook, Central Supply Catalogue, Vehicle Handbook and High Guard, naturally).



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Great Rift
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Minarsas Castle
Publisher: Columbia Games Inc.
by Alex G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/23/2017 14:29:14

Everybody in roleplaying games has to start somewhere - typically somewhere bucolic, a bit isolated from the outside world.

Tolkien had his Shire. Harn has Minarsas Castle and environs, including sleepy Lothlarny in the north and Runuld in the east. Minarsas is a semi-isolated fiefdom to the east of the Kingdom of Kaldor, the big "default good kingdom" of Harn.

This 40-page article has all the legendary meticulous attention to detail which has characterised every Harn product since the first articles appeared on the market. Interior and exterior maps and plans are included, and no detail is skimped, from the local characters (the fourteen-year-old would-be adventuress; her comatose mother who may, or may not, be being poisoned to keep her under; the local swaggering bully of a Laranian priest whom you know is only there for the characters to beat up later on, once they've beefed up their abilities with a few adventures notched into their belts ...) to the ancient abandoned Khuzan kyg (abandoned Dwarf mine) to the squabbling Guilds and the annual Wool Fair (and the shenanigans that can happen there).

In all, this article is a forty page catalyst designed to shove starter player characters down the road to High Adventure on Harn.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Minarsas Castle
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Starlight Manifesto Season 1 Campaign Book
Publisher: Dancing Lights Press
by Alex G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/21/2017 03:53:22

The first sourcebook for Starlight Manifesto, this book imagines a TV show, Starlight Manifesto. and offers an entire first season of 13 episodes, taking inspiration from a certain venerable US show with a cult following.

Reading this, I sensed that I was binge watching a show on Netflix which I could only describe as "What if Star Trek had been created by Berin Kinsman, Verity Lambert and J Michael Straczynski?" The adventures dance around some familiar landmarks of old Trek territory - one could see elements of one episode and think "I know where this one's going," only to be blindsided when the story suddenly veers off into something else. Imagine binge watching Trek on Netflix and getting as far as "Mudd's Women," with elements of "The Perfect Mate," and while you're at the front door getting the pizza delivery someone switches the episode to "Balance of Terror," and you'll get the general idea of what happens in this sourcebook (Note: actual gameplay differs from advertised footage).

The 13 adventures are designed as interlinked, although with a bit of tweaking they could be made more episodic, and episodes could be devised by the guide and inserted between these episodes, but it can be played with just these thirteen. The interconnectedness of these episodes, however, gives "Starlight Manifesto Season One" a modern feel, closer to Star Trek: Discovery than to the original series.

The titles of the episodes are inspired by Milton ("As Morning Shows The Day"), Shakespeare ("Naked Villainy," "What We May Be") and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle ("The Schemer Falls"). Each title hints at what the episode will be about. The episodes bring in new and recurring good guys and bad guys, feature new equipment, aliens, hazards and strangeness. There is a sense of introductions - just as Star Trek had to introduce the regulars and the signature aliens such as the Romulans and the Klingons for the first time, and just as it had to introduce Vulcan mind melds, the neck pinch, the Vulcan salute and "Live long and prosper" over several episodes, so too does this sourcebook feature episodes introducing some of the signatures of Starlight Manifesto for the first time such as the Zyrosh, the Brocour, the Fringe Worlds, the Tel'Keth and so on.

In the original Star Trek, all the best episodes were in the first and second seasons, with one or two gems emerging from the mire that was season 3, and ignoring "The Omega Glory," "The Empath" and that one with the space hippies. Please let's not have an episode in a future season where the player characters are required to play a bicycle wheel as a musical instrument.

I'm hoping that future series will appear, exploring other episodes from this much-loved series from a universe where Gene Roddenberry had landed a role writing Mission: Impossible and Bruce Geller ended up as showrunner for a Star Trek where Martin Landau played Spock, and Harlan Ellison wrote "The Naked Time."

And now I feel like I just binge watched an entire Netflix season of the show. Bring on Season 2.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Starlight Manifesto Season 1 Campaign Book
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Play Hard: Action Movie Roleplaying
Publisher: Dancing Lights Press
by Alex G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/21/2017 18:20:36

A tribute game based on action movies.

Think of action heroes - Bruce Willis crawling through air ducts, Arnie chewing the scenery and putting people down with one liners, Sly Stallone fighting off the entire Soviet Army armed with nothing but a machete and a couple of trick arrows, Clint Eastwood sneering at a corrupt police force, Charles Bronson's silent vigilante bringing dirtbags to justice.

This is where you get to play the heroes of those kinds of movies.

What's your story? Are you a police detective chasing down bent cops a la Serpico? Are you a government Marshall protecting witnesses by "erasing" them with elaborate theatrical trickery? You can be a Special Forces soldier, part of a unit chasing invisible aliens in a steaming jungle, or a First Officer aboard a commercial ship plagued by a chestbursting xenomorph.

The game mechanics, a simplified version of the Lighthouse roleplaying system, are so simple and easy to learn that you'll all but master them in the first session, allowing you to enjoy the game without the rules getting in your way.

Whether you want your action movie to be grim and gritty, or light-hearted and packed with one-liners, this game is for you. Just remember - these aren't the kinds of stories where the problems can be solved by just talking. You're only here to do one thing, and also chew gum ... and they're all outta gum.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Play Hard: Action Movie Roleplaying
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Starlight Manifesto
Publisher: Dancing Lights Press
by Alex G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/12/2017 10:11:22

Berin Kinsman's latest tour de force from Dancing Lights Press, Starlight Manifesto ventures into science fiction roleplaying - a genre dominated by Traveller and other SF games.

The characters are Peacekeepers of a galaxy-spanning interstellar organisation, in the manner of Starfleet officers from Star Trek or the Earthforce from Babylon 5. They are explorers, problem solvers, ambassadors and occasionally warriors.

The Starlight Union is not a perfect organisation, but they do have a system - and it works. The underlying philosophy behind the Union is outlined, and echoes both Trek and Babylon 5 in that it paints a future of inclusivity and cooperation, driven forwards by reason and optimism.

The characters' role is exemplified by the virtues espoused by Doctor Who - never being cruel, never being cowardly, and recognising fear as a companion and teacher rather than a threat to be met by a hail of plasma fire, an attitude seen all too often in other SF roleplaying games.

Starlight Manifesto is a full roleplaying game, using the Lighthouse Roleplaying System available separately. All you need to play is Starlight Manifesto, dice, pencil, paper and your imagination.

As with all Berin's books so far, there is no art: the aim is to free your imagination to picture the humans, aliens, equipment and visual appearance of the game the way you see it. The lack of art is a feature which results in the books being not only very small, but very good on your pocket.

The game became a DriveThru Best Seller within days of its launch, which is testimony to the creative power and passion of Berin Kinsman, manifest in the optimistic tone he adopts in this book.

In Revelations in Cold Iron, the protagonists had their work cut out for them; in Starlight Manifesto, the positive philosophy is not only triumphant, but ascendant. The universe beckons, and the future will be with us for a long time.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Starlight Manifesto
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Lythia Continent Map
Publisher: Columbia Games Inc.
by Alex G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/27/2017 11:33:07

I have a hardcopy version of this continent map. This electronic version allows me to do things I cannot dream of doing with my hardcopy, such as zoom in on a selected area.

Screengrabs allow me to be able to take any portion of the map and send it to the players, saving me the costs of lugging my hardcopy map down to the library to get it photocopied, plus mailing costs and so on. Every player can get their copy of the screengrab, and I would not have to worry about someone spilling drinks on, or tearing, my hardcopy map, or permanently marking it with a greasy fingerprint.

I also have the Harn, Ivinia, Shorkyne and Trierzon regional maps. I would like to see regional modules for Shorkyne and Trierzon. Otherwise this is a really good investment, whether one is a Harnworld completist or not.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Lythia Continent Map
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HarnWorld Three Region Maps and Lythia Continent Map [BUNDLE]
Publisher: Columbia Games Inc.
by Alex G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/12/2017 14:37:24

A useful bundle of regional maps to supplement the Harn regional map, available elsewhere on this site.

Anyone who had original hardcopies of these regional maps, or who wanted the full scale regional maps to go with the smaller scale regional maps included with the Pilots' Almanac supplement, can immediately recognise the usefulness of these maps, because these can be brought to a game session and zoomed in without having to risk those precious A2 maps by lugging them around to and from sessions.

One can keep the hardcopies safe and sound, now, and bring these to the game, and not have to worry about someone spilling coffee or Mountain Dew on the original hardcopies.

Also, the ability to zoom in on areas of the map at different scales is a feature which makes these electronic maps highly useful in any gaming environment.

In all, I give this my highest recommendation.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
HarnWorld Three Region Maps and Lythia Continent Map [BUNDLE]
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Revelations in Cold Iron
Publisher: Dancing Lights Press
by Alex G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/12/2017 14:00:38

I had been waiting to see what this first game based on Dancing Lights Press' Lighthouse Roleplaying System would offer. The concept of a cultlike group taking over the world is very much like the Seers of the Throne from Mage: the Awakening, and the Cult of Moloch sounds like one of the Great Ministries, if Moloch replaced the Paternoster Great Ministry.

In contrast, Cold Iron, the group to which the protagonists belong, is a Tier Three conspiracy group straight out of Hunter: the Vigil, along with a choice of Endowments based on the imposition of logical fallacies on the minds of targets.

The setting is dark fantasy, though "dark comedy" would perhaps be a more apt description, because what humour there is, is very black indeed. The distinction between protagonists and antagonists is hideously blurred - both sides would make use of SJW groups, alt-right / gamergate / MRA trolls, right-wing radio hosts spouting tinfoil hat conspiracies, anti-vaxxers, flat Earthers, vegans, gun nuts, survivalists and hate groups to impose their reality.

This is a very modern roleplaying game, one very much of the year of its release, 2017: a game of social media revolutions; of trials by television and newspaper headline; of fake news and Newspeak, and outright propaganda masquerading as journalism; of oligarchs sitting off the coast of Corfu on their private yachts, controlling entire nations from an iPhone; where, when a mad, frothing politician rises to a position of immense power on some bizarre ticket like chemtrails or building a wall, nobody on either team is entirely sure whether it was their influence or the enemy's influence that got him into power - and where the point is entirely moot, since both sides would happily take advantage of the regime to their own ends.

One quibble - the headline "Gaslighting is magick." I've been a victim of gaslighting. It is one thing that personally detracts from the overall pleasure of this rulebook and setting. But that is a subjective, personal issue.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Revelations in Cold Iron
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Creator Reply:
Thanks, Alex! I understand your sensitivity to the way the term "gaslighting" was used. I kept taking it out and putting it back in, wondering if it was too dark or too on-the-nose. Ultimately I kept it because I thought it aligned with the in-game concept of subjecting people to subjective, fake realities, very much a tactic used by the Cult of Moloch.
Thousand Years of Night
Publisher: Onyx Path Publishing
by Alex G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 06/23/2017 16:52:25

Basically, a book for players of Elders in Vampire: the Requiem, with rules which make them playable and challenging.

Every aspect is covered, from the mechanical aspects of generating someone who's got a few centuries of unlife under their belt, to unique character generation rules.

The book describes "new" Clans, but these will be familiar to you if you have other supplements such as VII, the Mekhet Clan Book and Requiem for Rome, namely the Akhud, the Hollow Mekhet and even the Julii. These are Second Edition V:tR mechanics for the originals, superseding their original writeups (and providing writeups for some for the first time). Similarly, the Covenants are brought under the spotlight, including one new Covenant purely for Elders, not seen or described before.

A chapter is devoted to the relationship between Elders and time and history; how the passage of time changes them, and how they touch history. There are tie ins with the Dark Eras Chronicles, because this book describes playing those Elders in various historical eras.

What's it like to portray a being with Intelligence or Manipulation 7, or Wits 6, or Dexterity 8? This book looks into that, too, along with what it's like to play beings with skill dots above 5. You may need Chronicles of Darkness: Dark Eras for a look at older pre-modern skills, though there is a summary here.

What else? New powers - Prestantia is back, making it fun to be an Akhud. Elder Devotions. New Cruac and Theban Sorcery Rites, for Elders. New Coils and Scales of the Dragon. New Merits.

A look at unlife, torpor, retaining your Humanity when even the definition of Humanity keeps changing, companionship, relations with foes and allies, new Banes, Elder Banes, Touchstones for Elders, ghouls, new monstrous enemies to fear, crossovers with mages, changelings and Primordial Beasts ...

There's a LOT of new information in this book, all of it geared towards Elders, aimed at creating Requiem Chronicles as far above the regular game in terms of scope as the regular game is above the mortals game from the Chronicles of Darkness blue book.

I'd been looking forward to a really good new book for Second Edition Requiem. Until something even better comes along, this is the first one that really cuts the thirst. As it were.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Thousand Years of Night
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