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Vampire: The Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition
Publisher: White Wolf
by emmanuelle u. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/13/2011 11:40:33
Good points :
If you want a recap of what has been written in a lot of books between 1st ed and ~1999. All bloodlines, offshots, old bloodlines, current bloodlines, and disciplines until your eyes bleed out. Awesome !
The content is good, Time of judgement never happened, it's well written (well, it's readable !), the paging is fine, the index is good, content was spread in good chapters.
System reworked : still a couple of loose random points that, in the end, always end up to the ST's discretion, but now, the clan weaknesses, the disciplines.. they work better together.
No setting whatsoever, no metaplot, freedom to the ST to say that LA is not under any Anarch Influence, Mexico and Canada under Sabbat (the good vs the evil ?). It is only a book full of the rules, the systems and else. For me, this is a huge plus.
Ken Meyer Jr's arts. They look beautiful, eerie, odd, dark and sad. The ambiance of those drawings (despite a horrible mix of christmas colors sometimes) is worth everything. If only the rest of the book's art could match that one blasphemy priest, or that party with the man tied up to his bed !


Bad points :
The art ;
Old art was reused (which is fine, buty WW would have colored it all ; all colored books with awesome art exists in the oWoD, like any Changeling the Dreaming corebook, and even new and non pdf, they are not expensive !).
New art can be questionable up to a certain point. Clanspreads are just odd, no new Christopher Shy, no new Rebecca Guay, and Tim Bradstreet's full pages work are, sometimes, way under his capacities (his 2nd edition works, like that Brujah woman on the first page, are just exceptional, but what he did for V20..). I see no "masquerade" to the Vampires they portray. And I don't mean the Nosferatu.
There is absolutely no visual identity, it's an artistic mess, it changes from everything to everything, and there are only few drawings that I can show to my players to make them feel the ambiance of what they witness or live. I would have loved to be able to do it like I do for Wraith, Changeling, Scion, L5R, Cthulhu... Why can't Masquerade do it ? Some art in v20 just make my players laugh.
The technology : the book mentions absolutely no Tremere/Malkie/Nossie conspiracy to steal Steve Jobs and Embrace him ! I am a sad panda :D. I mean that they do not mention the advances in technology since 1998, their control and their means (schrecknet ++ ?)

The price : 30$ for an item that was already made profit off by the pre-sales, is, for me, pure "greediness", but the debate of the fact that virtual items should have a price or not is another debate that has nothing to do with. I do not think 30$ is a fair price (considering that 25$ was the price of any good, colored corebook a few years ago), considering it doesn't cost more to sell 10.000 or just one. I have it because I pre-ordered the hard copy, which I hope to receive before the end of the world.

Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Vampire: The Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition
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