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Other Worlds $14.99
Publisher: Signal 13
by Alfredo S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/27/2011 06:55:46
Disclaimer: My name is listed as a playtester in the book, but in fact I only provided some observations about a previous draft. I must say, however, that I am very biased, as I a was excited about this project right from the beginning.

Other Worlds (OW) is a very well done conflict-based generic game. Player characters are made up of abstract abilities grouped into Cultural and Professional templates to which other abilities reflecting the character's specific individuality are added. Depending on the genre, characters can also have one or more Trademark templates which include special powers, magic, abilities reflecting the characteristics of sci-fi or fantasy races, special equipment (like having a super-spy car or a tricked-out Corellian tramp freighter), etc. Each ability gets an specific rating based on the power level of the game and can be used both as the base ability in a given conflict or as a supporting ability, increasing the base ability's rating. Anything can be an ability, and any ability can be used in a specific conflict: personality traits or quirks, professional skills, relationships, whatever.

Rolls are made using percentile dice in a very abstract resolution system which can be easily adapted to the flavour and tone of most any settings, with the possibility of using a more detailed resolution method for specially important or exciting conflicts. Consequences translate into new abilities which can help or hamper the character in further conflicts. Spotlight Points can be also used to modifiy the result of a roll.

Even though you can easily use OW to play in a stablished setting, one of its main strengths lays in the setting creation chapter. In OW, the group as whole creates the setting in which they want to play. It is basically a group brainstorming exercise in which genre, tone, setting details and main NPCs are created by the group. The rules also facilitate adding further detail to your gameworld as the game develops. Even if you have no interest at all in brainstorming a new setting with your players, you can easily use this chapter as a guideline for quickly creating a playable gameworld on your own. There is also an excellent chapter on customizing OW and adapting any setting, and a few short genre snapshots for sci-fi, superheroes, fantasy, pirates and wild west games.

The quality of writing is excellent and a generous amount of advice for playing the game can be found throughout the book, covering all you need to take into account to play OW. All this is wrapped in a simple but very professional and attractive layout by none other than Evil Hat's Fred Hicks, with a good number of eye-catching art pieces by Storn Cook.

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Other Worlds
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