At first I wanted an opening paragraph filled with Z?s instead of S?s but I felt that was a bit too annoying. Instead I will dive in on the fun of Fairy Tale gaming. It is games set in those mythical worlds or ones heavily influenced by them. The Shrek movies give an okay example of how such things might work but all one needs is a little imagination and a What?s Next question. In most of the tales the characters got a Happily Ever After or at the very least some sort of conclusion. It would be easy to find some of the original stories that ended a little darker then the now more familiar Disney interpretations of them. Welcome to the Zanfabulous Zorcerer of Zo.
The Zorcerer of Zo is a new RPG by Atomic Sock Monkey Press. They are the makers of a very good super heroes game called Truth and Justice. Zorcerer of Zo uses a simpler version of those rules. The book is over a hundred pages but much of it is campaign notes. The PDF is very well book marked. It has an interesting layout that presents two pages from the printed version on its of its pages. The printed book is half sized so the writing is not too small and it can be read. The art work is nicely done and the layout is over all very good.
The system is nice and easy. It was useful that I have read and played Truth and Justice which uses a more complicated version of the PDQ rules. And anyone that knows those rules will find that it sounds odd to use the word complicated along with them. It uses 2d6 for a simple task resolution. Characters have qualities that can be anywhere from -2 to +6 with the higher being the better. It is interesting that damage makes the qualities get worse and once all of them are gone the character dies. It is a rather neat way of doing health. There are outside modifiers a GM can apply and the PC can use hero points to help himself. Once a concept is thought of it takes only about twenty minutes at the most to detail out the character and once one gets a few characters under their belt and or gets used to the game that will go even faster. It is a good system for the kind of games a fairy tale based RPG wants to create.
The game starts with a great look at fairy tales. It really dissects them well and presents the different types and really does a great job of setting up a game based on them. This information will be great for anyone running a fairy tale based game be it Grimm or Zorcerer or another game. The rest of the book takes on into the land of Zo. One unique item the writer does in have his campaign notes and side bars from himself and his players. This can be seen as informative or a waste of space. Some people are going to be curious about this behind the scenes information and other obviously will not. I find it neat to read through.
Most the book is on the descriptions of the world. The original information the campaign started with is in here. The book and PDF though also present a more expanded version that is more appropriate for a campaign setting. It is still not overly detailed allowing for a lot of places and items a GM will have to define himself. There are a few NPCs here and the focus is on the campaign the game was based on. It is a very creative place that draws on a lot of inspirational sources. It has the feeling of a typical fairy tale world. It has a few modern elements brought in in a sort of cross over like in Narnia and in Oz. I did find it interesting how the GM was at first really resistant to doing this and later realized that it was a mistake. That?s some of the behind the scenes information the book presents.
The Zorcerer of Zo is a nice fairy tale game. It is more about this one setting them about creating one from scratch. The book takes a nice approach to the subject and has some truly creative ideas in it.
<b>LIKED</b>: Great use of the PDQ system and very creative<br><br><b>DISLIKED</b>: A little too much on the campaign they ran<br><br><b>QUALITY</b>: Very Good<br><br><b>VALUE</b>: Satisfied<br>