I first found Deadlands when it was it's own stand alone system. For all intent and purposes, it was the precursor to the Savage Worlds system.
Now I find myself looking at it through a new lens - Deadlands Reloaded: Marshall's Handbook (Explorer's Edition) for Savage Worlds. In a way, we've come full circle.
I still love the divergent history that is the setting of Deadlands. American Western movies are pretty much our version of Avalon, King Arthur and the rest of the English / Celtic legends. Deadlands starts with that Western assumption, throws in undead and magic, changes some major historical events and gives us a huge amount of awesomeness - if your players like Westerns.
Some folks don't like sci-fi, some don't like fantasy, some don't like westerns and others don't like horror. Deadlands is a fantastical western horror setting (with some steampunkish elements), so it will either hit a lot of buttons for your group or miss a lot. It hits all of the sweet spots for me.
The Marshal's Handbook gives us background and history, the major players, critters, new rules for the setting - pretty much everything you need to get the game moving from the GM's side of the table.
The PDF itself is well bookmarked and hyperlinked. For a PDF coming in over 175 pages, these are pretty much necessities. Heck, they even give permission to print the document for personal use. You can even use layer controls to efficiently print the pages, which is nice.
[4 of 5 Stars!]