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SciFi Bridge
Publisher: DramaScape
by Keith (. T. A. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 11/18/2015 09:18:59

This product contains a pdf and jpg file with large and spacious starship bridge. It is nicely laid out with a variety of grid systems, including no grid. It also includes an image suitable for use in a Virtual Tabletop like MapTool. It contains complete instructions about how to assemble the map if you print the pages.


Overall the image quality is good with detailed dressing. There's a lot of empty space for token/miniature movement. My only quibble is that there is almost too much empty space. Other than that I prefer pngs to jpgs so the background can be transparent



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
SciFi Bridge
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The Partisan Passenger Version
Publisher: DramaScape
by Keith (. T. A. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 11/18/2015 09:01:18

This is an interesting concept for a passenger ship. The vessel can split in half, leaving the passengers separate from the crew and cargo if the need arises. I'm wondering what that need might be but it's an novel concept all the same. However, if that's not your idea of what a passenger ship should be it's easy enough to simply call them two separate decks. As a bonus, the PDF contains a finely detailed single-seat fighter.


As usual for this company, the graphics are first rate and the map is well constructed with good attention to detail and varied content to give your players lots to explore. It's perfect for either Virtual Tabletop use or to be printed for face-to-face gaming.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Partisan Passenger Version
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SciFi Research Lab
Publisher: DramaScape
by Keith (. T. A. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 10/10/2015 22:00:09

This product contains the map for a single level research station with tables, stations, view screens, and research targets contained with the lab. It comes with a video, a virtual tabletop map (JPG), and a pdf containing print and play pages with square, hex, and no-grid options. I can see using the map as a drop-in for an existing rpg campaign or as a battlemap for a tabletop wargame. Kudos to the creators for providing both VTT and PDF versions although I'd prefer the VTT version be PNG with a transparent background to blend better other objects along the edges.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
SciFi Research Lab
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Ancient World: Bestiarum Vocabulum (Savage Worlds)
Publisher: Mystical Throne Entertainment
by Keith (. T. A. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 09/13/2015 11:59:27

BESTIARUM VOCABULUM is a monster manual for use in Mystic Throne Entertainment's Savage Setting 'Ancient World' – a dark fantasy setting. The creatures herein dwell within the world of Dhuran and an attached Chaos realm of the setting. However, these creatures could be used in any Savage Setting which includes Chaos spawn.


The work is laid out well with detailed graphics and descriptions of the 57 creatures contained in the world. Some of the entries include plague and corrupted versions of the beings so things are not always as they seem. The realm of Aelmere, central to the setting, is bounded by a land of volcanoes, ice, Pharisees, and Barbarians. This work contains entrants from each of those realms, adding the Chaos realm as well.


This is well worth adding to your stock of fantasy supplements for Savage Worlds. The art is first rate, the descriptions are voluminous, and the layout is easy on the eyes. Although the creatures are geared for a fantasy setting, they could also serve in a Pulp 30's or SciFi setting as creatures for beyond.


Seems to be well worth the price.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Ancient World: Bestiarum Vocabulum (Savage Worlds)
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Marines & Aliens Miniatures 2
Publisher: DramaScape
by Keith (. T. A. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 05/15/2015 12:40:13

This is a nice set of paper minis combined with topdown pngs for use with your favorite VTT. The images are nicely differentiated with a broad set of aliens and marines to use in your game. The image quality is good and holds up to a low zoom level. A good group to use on distant alien worlds or as guards/mercs in a futuristic urban sprawl.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Marines & Aliens Miniatures 2
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Weird Wars Rome: Enemies of Rome Figure Flats
Publisher: Pinnacle Entertainment
by Keith (. T. A. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 12/27/2013 12:46:54

These figures are used for Savage Worlds Wierd Wars Rome setting book. Pinnacle Entertainment produces several lines of this product type for playing in various settings. In this case, the figure flats are for the enemies of Rome including barbarians, pirates, and armies of enemy empires.


The artwork is very nice and can be used for virtual tabletops or face to face play. The flats could easily be used for other games from the era or for fantasy settings as well. Overall another good job by PEG.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Weird Wars Rome: Enemies of Rome Figure Flats
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Weird Wars Rome: Legionary Archetypes
Publisher: Pinnacle Entertainment
by Keith (. T. A. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 12/18/2013 19:21:14

This is a great supplement to the WW Rome Savage Setting. In it you'll find a variety of legionnaires, each with a unique background and distinct traits. Included in the set are the DECANUS - the leader, The Ox - a strong man with a kind spirit, The Face - nobility seeking charmer, The Tough - Too tough for Cerberus to chew, The eager recruit - yeah, you're that guy, and the hunter - your usual woodsman in Roman armor.


The product comes with standees for minis but if you're a VTT users, you can simply copy the images out as tokens. The PDF is extremely well formatted allowing you remove the background, images, or text for printing or copying.


Overall this is an excellent product with great content and high production value. If you're thinking of running a WWR game, this would be a good set of characters to give your gamers or a great NPC set if they've created their own.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Weird Wars Rome: Legionary Archetypes
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Counter Collection Digital v3.0 Heroic 3 Expansion
Publisher: Fiery Dragon
by Keith (. T. A. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 12/18/2013 19:01:43

This is a nice select of tokens for your 4e game. I liked the jpgs for virtual tabletop use. You simply unzip the product into your resource library and you're ready to go. The artwork leans towards cartoonish rather than realistic but I don't see that as a drawback.


For you face-to-face gamers, the product contains some pdfs that allow you to place images onto an 8.5x11 page to be printed and cut out as needed.


Overall a good product and well worth the price.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Counter Collection Digital v3.0 Heroic 3 Expansion
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Quick Maps: Super Dungeon I
Publisher: Project Zero Games
by Keith (. T. A. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 12/18/2013 18:49:44

This pack features fifty-three pages of 8x8 maps with numerous version of rooms and halls. There are quite a few special features including pits and rooms with iconography. You're supposed to print this out for use in a dungeon but I'm a virtual tabletop person so I stripped the images out for use in MapTool.


To do this I loaded the PDF into GIMP export one image per layer as a jpg. The resulting images have a grid size of fifty. It seems the printed grid is just a bit off but not enough to affect game play.


Overall this is a good product for both face-to-face and online gaming but you'll need to put in a little work to get it ready for online play.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Quick Maps: Super Dungeon I
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Interface Zero 1.0
Publisher: Gun Metal Games
by Keith (. T. A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/16/2013 15:58:46

Interface Zero is the goto book for cyberpunk savagery. It has detailed history, equipment, characters, and setting information for this dystopian future. The authors do an excellent job of drawing you into the setting with a writing style that's engaging and informative. The system does a great job of shoehorning cyber into Savage Worlds via a method that is clean and elegant.


The only negative I have is the amount of history presented up front. It's great stuff but it took a while to get through.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Interface Zero 1.0
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The Shrine of Olikulese (FAE)
Publisher: Chubby Monster Games
by Keith (. T. A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/16/2013 15:50:37

Nice, clean module with a great layout and maps. The adventure uses the Fate Accelerated system which is east to comprehend and run. The authors have a nice selection of magic items, monsters and pre-generated NPCs. This would be a great, short adventure for those getting back together for the holidays.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Shrine of Olikulese (FAE)
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Publisher Reply:
Thank you for the review, we appreciate the feedback!
Savage Worlds Deluxe: Explorer's Edition
Publisher: Pinnacle Entertainment
by Keith (. T. A. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 09/14/2013 14:16:11

A Deluxe treatment of the Savage Worlds Core rules brings a few new elements without alienating the throngs of Savages that hold their SW Explorer's Editions as the best RPG they've ever bought. Or, at least the best value and definitively lives up to it's Fast, Furious, and Fun pulpy play goodness.


Those that have the original Savage Worlds Hardbound will notice that we're seeing the evolution of a game system that has gone from the 146 page hardbound that was a fun alternative to d20 (d20 conversion guide included), to the 160 page (and famously $10) Explorers Edition and now back to a hardbound Deluxe Edition. I believe everyone can admit that the SW:EX form factor took SW from established indie/fringe to something every gamer and podcast has talked about for the past few years. I grinned and chuckled to myself as I made my weekly game store visit many months ago and saw the DnD 4e "Essentials" format books. I thought "Oh, how the mighty have fallen!" In a way, it's one of the nicest compliments Pinnacle could have received. WOTC's 4e Gamma World rules were also in SWEX sized format but proved that the right size with crap rules is still a poor combination. That's another rant for another time. Recently, I've seen Troll Lord's 3 book, smaller than SWEX, Castles and Crusades "Digest" set that has gone a bit too far. But, you get the point, the market has changed and Pinnacle was a driver to a new and better way.


The covers of the 3 SW editions tell an evolving story. We see it visually. Originally SW is carved in stone and with the Deluxe Edition's SW logo - it's embossed gold. But for those of us who loved DnD in it's primitive days have learned, really great art doesn't a great system make, but it helps.


First Blush:
Great Art. Cover: newish logo with multiple genres telling the story. Full page ads for Pinnacle settings between the Intro and Chapter 1: Character Creation that capture the different genres nicely. The Ripper's ad with it's hunter sporting wolverine-like claws confronting a Promethean monstrosity rocks! Lots of full page great looking art sprinkled throughout.
Design Notes - as you could guess, it's a paragraph that focuses on an aspect of the game that the designers want to emphasize. Good insight from the creators!
GUTS are gone! - out of the core rules and into setting rules that need it. Makes sense.
Dramatic Tasks - adds a mechanic for when a hero is in a dramatic situation and needs to perform a task to save the day under a tight time restriction. This mechanic or element adds to the feel of the pressure.
New Setting Rules - ie "Blood & Guts: Characters can spend Bennies on damage rolls! Use this rule when you really want to up the carnage." Also, Born A Hero, Critical Failures, Fanatics, and Gritty Damage.... are some other examples. Gritty Damage sounds ALOT like the styles found in Reality Blurs: Realms of Cthulhu. Interesting! There are quite a few new ideas here that can really add a new feel to the very same adventures you've played.
Interludes - essentially using character down-time to add to character development. A simple mechanic that involves the GM picking a character and that player picks a card (Clubs-tragedy, Spades-Victory, Hearts-Love, and Diamonds-Desire). The player then tells the tale of the type chosen (tragedy, love, etc..). Assuming a moving or entertaining tale is told, a reward is given of a Benny or Adventure Card chosen by the player.
GM section - The Countdown - (a Design Note) put a limit or sense of urgency to limit those that are taking too long to make decision of what to do next. Not to be overused.
Fun new One-Sheet adventures
While not exhaustive, I think you'll agree there's quite a bit of good new stuff to add to our Savage Worlds adventures. I didn't get the feeling that the system suddenly changed but just had some additional mechanics that can add to the fun...and some stress! I think I'll go start prepping some stories for an interlude.


Here's a much longer list of features by a current GM for our 1930's Pulp Campaign, John Riggs who dug through the Pinnacle forums for this compilation:


CHANGES




  • Guts skill removed from core rules (but mentioned as a possible setting rule)




  • Driving is now a free action unless the character is performing a maneuver




  • Leadership Edges can be used on Wild Cards




  • Background Edges can be taken after character creation




  • Double Barrel Shotgun slightly tweaked in how it works




  • A Shaken while on Hold loses Hold Status




  • Shaken results now merely limit the character to free actions (instead of no actions) and do not halve the character's Pace




  • new Incapacitation table (including some "Bleeding Out" rules)




  • Healing can now only be attempted on each individual's fresh wounds once in the "Golden Hour." (Plus an attempt to revive if the target is Incapacitated.) They can't cause an additional wound through rolling a 1 or less however.




  • area effect attacks now get an extra 1d6 damage for a raise (like most attacks)




  • prone defenders may no longer rise to defend themselves automatically (it requires an action and takes 2" of movement)




  • new Chase rules (also, the Climb stat for aircraft works differently in this context)



  • tweaks to some powers (e.g., the Bolt power can be used for multiple bolts, or one increased damage bolt, but not both at once)


ADDITIONS


designer notes (explanations and reflections on the rules by the PEG folks)
archetypes (character templates that let you create NPCs easily on the fly, or allow new players to jump right in)
example Races (e.g., elf, dwarf, android, etc.)
race creation rules (similar to those found in the Fantasy Companion or Slipstream)
clarified rules on common knowledge v. specific knowledge
Knowledge: Language rules
about 20 new Edges (including some new combat and leadership edges)
many more vehicles included in the gear section (more similar to the old hardback SW rules than SW:EX)
some notes for playing without miniatures, including how to approximate area templates without a battle map
rules for Improvised Weapons
rules for Push (which can be used to push, shield bash, or knock someone prone)
rules for Rapid Attack (basically three attacks in one round, all at a penalty)
rules for Firing Blind
rules for Social Conflicts
rules for Dramatic Tasks (basically performing tasks with a time limit - e.g., diffusing a bomb)
rules for Interludes (sort of like little "flashback" scenarios for in between major parts of the plot)
a section on common Setting Rules (e.g., the Guts skill, gritty damage, etc.)
inclusion of a bunch of new powers (including many from from the Fantasy Companion)
inclusion of power trapping rules
Combat Ratings (notes on balancing and scaling combat encounters)
several one-sheet adventures
a character sheet


This is truly one of the best values in gaming. I played for two years in the core rule book before every buying a supplement. If you like rapid-fire combat and intuitive rules, Savage Worlds is the system for you.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Savage Worlds Deluxe: Explorer's Edition
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Savage Worlds Horror Companion
Publisher: Pinnacle Entertainment
by Keith (. T. A. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 09/14/2013 14:08:49

Review originally appeared at http://rptroll.blogspot.com/2011/1-
2/review-savage-worlds-horror-companion.html


Pinnacle Entertainment Group released a new member of their Companion series for the Horror genre. This work joins the Super Powers and Fantasy Companions as supplements to the Savage Worlds rules set. Like the others in the series, the Horror Companion is in the smaller Explorer’s Edition format.


One important note: this rule book does not stand on its own. It is a supplement. You must have either the Savage Worlds Deluxe Edition or Savage Worlds Explorer’s Edition in order to fully utilize this product.


The Horror Companion contains generous amounts of artwork, reference tables, encounters, character additions, and equipment for all your Horror genre needs. It’s information-packed pages contain rules and setting advice to recreate Horror/Super Natural adventures in the Victorian worlds of Bram Stoker and Mary Shelly, the modern slap-stick humor of Ghostbusters, the serial action/horror adventures of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the star-spanning terror of H. P. Lovecraft's creations, or the futuristic nightmare creatures of the Alien franchise all packed in 144 pages.


Character Creation


In the Savage Worlds tradition of Fast, Furious, and Fun; the Horror Companion jumps right into character creation. Savage Worlds is one of the best game systems for replicating the theatrical adventure one finds in movies and novels. To that end, the work includes a number of customized Edges and Hindrances to allow for characters pulled straight from the movie house.


The new Edges and Hindrances for your players and NPCs include:


Hindrances
Angst
Bleeder
Bullet Magnet
Cursed
Combat Shock
Doubting Thomas
Jumpy
Screamer
Slow
Touched
Victim
Edges
Relentless
Fanaticism
Exorcist
Necromancer
Master Necromancer
Talisman Craftsman
Monster Hunter
Sound Mind
Tower of Will
Hardened
Occultist
One of the Chosen
Visions
If your campaign is a little more powerful, you can also have non-human characters and NPCs. Be warned, they will be distinctly more power than the humans. If you plan on running a mixed character group, you might want to consider starting humans as Seasoned while starting other races out at the Novice rank.


Character Races
Angel
Demon

Dhampyr - half vampire
Patchwork Man - like the Frankenstein Monster
Phantom - ethereal
Vampire
Werewolf
Zombie - has a thing for fresh meat.
The Tools of the Trade


The Horror Companion equipment section was truly a joy to read. I was pleased to see Ghostbuster-style equipment present. Other equipment mimicked that found in movies series like Blade or Underworld. Below is a partial list of equipment found in this section.


Atomic Ghost Hunting Pack
Ultraviolet Grenade
Garlic Bullets
Silver Nitrate Bullets
Ultraviolet Bullets
Ghost Trap


Fear and Loathing in Gaming - Setting Rules


The Setting section adds horror tinted ideas to create custom styles of play. Your game setting might have a horrible price for magic, people splatter when killed, heightened magical effects based on the calendar day, or the fact that immoral behavior is a serial killer magnet.


For the Lovecraft fans, the Horror Companion includes a Sanity attribute which measures the character’s Spiritual toughness. It starts at half the character’s Spirit+2. Carnage, super natural terror, and forbidden knowledge lower Sanity while triumphing over evil, rest and relaxation, and psychotherapy heal it.


If a character’s Sanity drops too low, they are odd in some way and pick up a negative to their Charisma. If it drops to zero, they get the joy of rolling on the Psychosis Table. Luckily, the rules allow for Sanity healing, so your characters might be brought back from the brink.


Other setting rules include
Forbidden Lore - containing information “Man Was Not Meant to Know”
Rituals and the Price of Failure - magic in horror settings isn’t often as easy or available as fantasy settings. The Ritual rules contain some variations to simulate this in game terms. Rituals that fail carry special consequences. Depending on the setting, Villians may use Sacrifices to power their evil Rituals and spells.
Signs & Portents - Horror often includes foreshadowing from a fortune teller or dreams. The Horror Companion includes a Portents Table to help the GM determine the value of the visions or advice. Unlucky characters receiving a fortune of Doom may have their Bennies removed for the rest of the game.
Wards & Binds - an important aspect of Horror is the ability to ward against evil or bind an unstoppable being, so the Horror Companion has rules governing these aspects including how such a creature breaks free.


Magick


Much like the equipment section, the Horror Companion contains new powers to simulate popular Horror fiction. In addition, powers derived from Dark sources may drain sanity if the caster rolls a critical failure. Even if your character does not have an Arcane Background, they may still be able to cast spells via Rituals (see setting rules, above).


Some of the new powers include:
Banish Entity
Bind Entity
Consecrate Ground
Corpse Senses
Drain Years
Enhance Undead
Grave Shroud
Grave Speak
Nightmares
Spirit Shield
Strength of the Dead
Summon Demon
Summon Spirit
Suppress Lycanthropy
The Horror Companion also contains a list of Arcane Items for inclusion in your game. Some of these items are cursed, others are ancient and unique, while still others can be made with the proper ingredients. The items include:
Bandages of Anubis
Frankenstein’s Laboratory
Hockey Mask of Terror
Sacrificial Knife
Voodoo Dolls


http://frankensteinia.blogspot.com/2008/-
09/frankensteins-laboratory.html


What’s a Horror adventure without terrifying creatures to fight, overcome, or evade? The Horror Companion doesn’t disappoint with a list of mundane and super natural beings for encounters. They aren’t all monsters. Some are people like Vampire Slayers or Occultic Investigators that might help your characters when things go bump in the night.
Dark Man
Collector Demon
Pazuzu
Dreamreaver
Evil Clown
Haunted Car
Haunted Portrait
Mad Scientist
Serial Killers
Stuffed Animal Fiend
Chinese Hopping Vampire
Were-Creatures
The last section on Game Mastering guides the GM through a setting creation by describing the various genres of Horror. Before starting, the GM needs to decide the Horror style to use including: Action, Greater Evil, and Dark.


Action settings involve lots of combat where the characters wade through monsters, kicking super natural butt and taking names. The heroes are more akin to fantasy settings than helpless teenagers running way from a serial killer. Fear rules are rarely used in this style of play.
Greater Evil settings feature super natural creatures as far above us as we are above ants. The human race is an insignificant speck in the universe and all their technology is useless against being of cosmic power. Heroes are normal men and women who are drawn into the dark to keep mankind safe from the greater cosmic horror. Fear and Sanity rules dominate this style of play with the characters struggling to stay sane.
Dark settings are somewhere between Action and Greater Evil settings. In this case, there may be monsters that are easily killed but others, like vampires, are difficult and take planning. Fear rules are used often but the Sanity rules are de-emphasised. Things are scary but not mind bending.


After the GM picks the style, they must decide on an era of play. Will the campaign be in a Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Modern, or Historical era.


Fantasy is a well worn path with which most gamers are familiar. It’s also likely the hardest to separate from a classic fantasy campaign. The Ravenloft modules can be easily transformed into Savage Worlds using a combination of the Fantasy and Horror Companions.
Sci-Fi campaigns are another setting players should be familiar with. Aliens or Warhammer 40K would both do well Savaged using these rules. Likewise I could see moving the Horror Companion rules into the existing Savage Worlds Necropolis setting.
Modern is another era setting that would be easy to implement. Thanks to the Internet, maps and locals are easily found and used for game purposes.
History era settings are probably the hardest to create. The GM will need to spend a good bit of time on research to get the story-telling touches down to make the players feel like they’re in the time period. That said, the Victorian time period has many game supplements available including Space 1889, Rippers, and Deadlands. Other historical settings include Weird War II, Pirates of the Spanish Main, and Solomon Kane.


Conclusion


I enjoyed reading this supplement cover to cover. It’s packed with ideas, statistics, and other content to help GMs and Players create a fun (or scary) Horror campaign. While the content isn’t as extensive as other Savage Worlds horror supplements like Realms of Cthulhu or Rippers, it contains more than enough to get you started on a lenghthy campaign.


As a side note, the fact that the Creature list includes Pazuzu and Dark Man entries made me wonder if Wiggy’s been in my computer since those are the creatures I used the Thomas Gunn Detective Stories of The New Moon Murders and Prescription for Revenge.


On the up side, the Horror Companion gave me lots of idea’s for my third novel. After all, isn’t the reason we game to tell good stories and have fun? That’s what the Savage Worlds Companion series is all about.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Savage Worlds Horror Companion
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The Unspeakable Oath 19
Publisher: Arc Dream Publishing
by Keith (. T. A. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 09/14/2013 14:05:32

How much fun can it be to thwart evil only to be eaten alive or driven insane for your efforts? As it turns out, quite a bit. Cthulhu fans everywhere rejoice in the return of a quarterly magazine dedicated to their favorite tentacular genre, Unspeakable Oath.


The periodical publication is overloaded with material that takes a while digest. It’s not that the 80+ pages couldn't be read quickly. it’s just that you’ll want to stop ever so often to contemplate ways to work the material into your campaign. WARNING: The Oath is not a light read.


The Oath is back and better than ever. The quarterly is packed with information to spice up your existing Cthulhu game or can be the source of great campaign ideas to start a new adventure in Lovecraftian horror. The contributors' love of the Mythos shows on every content-loaded page. For the money, there’s hardly a better deal for Cthulhu fans.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Unspeakable Oath 19
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Deadlands Reloaded: The Flood
Publisher: Pinnacle Entertainment
by Keith (. T. A. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 09/14/2013 13:58:34

This review originally appeared at http://rptroll.blogspot.com/2012/04/revi-
ew-deadlands-reloaded-flood.html


The Savage Troll continues its trek through Deadlands and I must admit, it's a scary journey. Those of you who read the reviews of the Player's Guide and Marshal's Handbook will be glad to know this review will ere on the side of brevity. While I believe in exhaustive reviews of rule books, adventures - such as this one - need to remain far more secretive. We don't want to give away any surprises to your posse.


Deadlands is easily the largest property in the Pinnacle Entertainment Group's product line. The 15+ year old setting has seen four RPG systems with a mountain of supplements including rule books, adventures, trail guides, and plot point campaigns. The Flood is a plot point campaign centering around the starved region of the West coast.


The campaign takes place in the 1880s and so would mesh well with other Victorian campaigns such as Rippers, Space 1889: Red Sands, or even The Kerberos Club. You could easily rip information and characters from The Flood to populate any of those settings. In fact, were I to ever run a Deadlands campaign, I suspect Ghost Rock powered ships would lead to a Space 1889-like setting with the characters encountering horrors on other planets as well.


Events Leading to The Flood


During the Quake of ‘68, California fractured as large ribbons of land dropped over fifty feet allowing the Pacific Ocean to rush in. The remaining landscape became a series of large mesas surrounded by brown, briny water flowing through canyons. The Maze, as it is now called, became a popular destination for those looking to strike it rich by mining the fundaments exposed on the new cliff faces.


Ghost Rock, the miracle mineral, is abundant in the Maze and the people and powers that make up the world are mad to have it. Ghost rock burns five times hotter and 100 times longer than coal. It’s also used in the production of Ghost Steel, which is lighter, stronger, and has a higher melting point than regular steel. On top of that, chemists and pharmaceutical makers use Ghost Rock to create all manner of potions, elixirs, and formulas for just about anything.


As the Rail Barons direct their employees to drive spikes and lay rail in order to reach the gold mine that is Ghost Rock, their soldiers and thugs fight it out in the Great Rail Wars. Greed and a thirst for power drives the Barons onwards as rail companies form the North, South, Deseret, and Shan Fan all compete to see who will reach the port city of Lost Angels first. Each company is only a few miles away from the de facto capital of California and it won’t be long before one of the biggest battles in history decides who will control the supply of Ghost Rock to the USA and/or CSA.


This is the setting for The Flood and your posse falls (literally) smack dab in the middle of it.


A Big Setting


The Flood contains a full plot point campaign centered around the Great Rail Wars, the Servitor of Famine, the Chinese Triads, Santa Anna’s undead army, and an intrepid reporter who seeks the assistance of your posse. It would be bad enough if that’s all the characters had to deal with. On top of that they must ply the dangers of the Maze which includes the effects of Famine. Food becomes a major concern on top of dodging merciless pirates, nations on the verge of war, and boom towns full of prospectors and those that prey on them.


The book has several new Edges and Hindrances and a greatly expanded selection of martial arts extras. With the city of Shan Fan and the Chinese Warlords being a major component to this supplement, the characters can expect a lot of Kung Fu action. The mafia thugs aren't the only martial artists, however. The Shaolin are present as well and work as a force for good in the area. Their hidden training ground sends out adepts to help fight the servants of the Reckoners. Mad Scientist, or New Scientist as they like to be called, should avoid this temple. The monks don't take kindly to Ghost Rock-powered devices.


The book includes all manner of waterborne vehicles. To get anywhere in the Maze you’ll need them. It also contains a nice section on Chinese fighting weapons. One word of warning, though. Due to the difficulties of getting goods into and out of the Maze, almost everything is 3-6 times more expensive than usual.


The Numbers


1 New Martial Arts Hindrance
17 Celestial Kung Fu Moves
1 New Hindrance for the non-Kung Fu types
11 New Edges
8 Martial Arts Weapons
10 New Ships
2 New Infernal Devices
27 Strange Locals


8 Plot Points in the Campaign
34 Savage Tales
12 New Critters
4 New Famine’s Servants
27 Famous Folks


That adds up to a lot of content.


To Live and Die in Lost Angels


Much of the action occurs in and around the city of Lost Angels. The Right Rev. Grimme is the ruler of this area and demands all city residents attend his church. Even without his edict, they would likely attend anyway. He has the only food in the area that satisfies the otherwise insatiable hunger people feel in Famine’s domain.


The book goes into great detail about the city and its surroundings. The characters even witness the creation of a Dealands ( Fear Level 6 ) during the adventure. This event will erase any doubt about the need for heroes to literally save the world. And that’s just in plot point two.


Your posse should be mindful of the Lost Angels laws. Violators are often sent to prison and never heard from again.


Shan Fan City, Here We Come


Shan Fan is Lost Angels equal in size and power and The Flood devotes a large section of the book to the city and its surroundings. It also adds a lot of flavor. Shan Fan is like the worlds largest Chinatown and the authors do a good job explaining what that means.


Like Lost Angels, Shan Fan is a city full of powerful personalities. You and your posse get to know the leaders of the Chinese mafias often coming into conflict with them. If you think this is all Kung Fu action you’re wrong. Most are gunslingers abandoning the ways of their ancestors for the favored weapons of the West.


Horrific Adventure Awaits


This book is chock full content. One of the problems I had was absorbing it all. Some things are stated in the Strange Locals that hop around in time. In some cases they are dependant on the plot point campaign so if you get confused, skip to the adventure then come back and read about each area.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Deadlands Reloaded: The Flood
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