The following review was originally posted at Roleplayers Chronicle and can be read in its entirety at http://roleplayerschronicle.com/?p=27357.
Steven D. Russell gives GMs 101 “bad guys” from the organization known as the Fold of Mother’s Pride – a member in the criminal cartel made up of mostly monsters – to throw at the adventurers. 101 Not So Random Encounters: Urban is intended for GM use in Rite Publishing’s City of Questhaven for the Pathfinder system. It can be adapted for other use as well with a little bit of work.
The city is always scary and now it has gotten nastier. 101 Not So Random Encounters: Urban gives the GM more creative flexibility and more encounters freak out players with the city’s criminal underworld organization known as Mother’s Pride. Theencounters range from CR 23 to CR 1/2 with the ability to scale all of them upwards two more levels and some of them downwards two levels. There is some artwork within the product – some of it is good, some of it is okay.
101 Not So Random Encounters: Urban brings gamers a vast array of new options to astonish even the most jaded of players with unique encounters. It gives the GM creative vigor, and it’ll give the players something to talk about for a long time. The big issue with this product is its lack of complete statistics for all of the entries and there isn’t artwork to go with each encountered creature. Unfortunately, this product does not give a very detailed description of Mother’s Pride in the introduction.
Publication Quality: 8 out of 10
The order of the content flows beautifully from the head of the Mother’s Pride down to the latest “youngling” that has been taken into the criminal organization’s membership. However, the lack of artwork within every monster entry is a deterrent to this product. Also, some entries are not as detailed as others; consequently, you will have to have the Pathfinder Bestiaries in order to look up statistics for most of the creatures (about 70 – 80%) used in the product.
Mechanics: 8 out of 10
The mechanics listed are typically the standard statistics from the Bestiaries or if they have been adjusted, it is because of the scaling of the creature, up or down.
Value Add: 8 out of 10
The aim of this product is GMs and those players who plan on becoming GMs. If Steven Russell had given players an extra section with more information specific to the criminal cartel system in Questhaven, the product would have the ability to be expanded by the GM if needed.
Overall: 8 out of 10
If there was more artwork and all of the statistics were given for all of the creatures, this product would have been rated much higher. One of the good things is the ability to scale the encounters up, and in some cases down, so that the GM can adapt them to the needs of the game. The other really good thing is that all of the members of the organization are listed and there is flavor text (individual personality and hangouts) for each of them.
[4 of 5 Stars!]