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Read What Others Are Saying
UNE, The Universal NPC Emulator (rev.)
by Michael K.
Publisher: Conjecture Games
Date Added: 12/02/2014 16:13:25
UNE, The Universal NPC Emulator (rev.) Such a simple, yet deep story mechanic. I love this product. I can't wait to use it more.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
BOLD, Universal PC Stories and Deeds Generator
by Michael K.
Publisher: Conjecture Games
Date Added: 12/02/2014 16:07:08
BOLD, Universal PC Stories and Deeds Generator This is a spectacular product. It solves the "and then?" dilemma and so much more. The work Zach is doing on deepening the narrative is impressive. This has become a go-to document for me.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Tianxia: Blood, Silk & Jade
by Sophie L.
Publisher: Vigilance Press
Date Added: 12/02/2014 14:49:40
Tianxia: Blood, Silk & Jade Tianxia: Blood, Silk and Jade is based on the Fate Core system, with a martial arts system layered on top. Since this system primarily uses aspects with free invocations, stunt-like techniques, an extra skill (Chi), and the optional Weapon and Armour ratings from Fate Core, it’s actually quite easy to handle for Fate veterans. The book is simply gorgeous, thanks to the gorgeous illustrations by Denise Jones and an attractive, legible layout. It may appear like a slim book at first (181 pages not counting the appendices and index), but that’s because it doesn’t have to spend much time on system since it does not repeat the Fate system basic rules. Since Fate Core is available on a pay-what-you-like basis from Evil Hat Productions, gamers are not saddled with an excessive cost. Author Jack Norris packed a lot of goodness in these pages, 36 kung fu styles, numerous locations and characters to use, story seeds, a random adventure menu, and good insight into the genre. The story seeds...

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Firefly Role-Playing Game Corebook
by Sophie L.
Publisher: Margaret Weis Productions
Date Added: 12/02/2014 14:45:48
Firefly Role-Playing Game Corebook This is the game I had hoped the Serenity RPG would be, back in 2005. The thoroughly non-groundbreaking Cortex Classic system has been overhauled into the now quite interesting Cortex Plus system (also behind the Leverage RPG, Marvel Heroic Roleplaying, and Smallville RPG.) The thick, meaty book contains a lot of information about the Verse, and useful game-mastering advice. A collection of customizable character templates provides lots of ideas and allows simplified character creation if you don’t want to play the original cast. Characters have attributes, skills, distinctions, and assets, each assigned a die type from d4 to d12. The more important or beneficial the characteristic, the larger the die size. Whenever rolling to accomplish something, you roll at least two dice (one for attribute and one for skill), plus any number of bonus dice for favourable circumstances, distinctions and assets you can bring into play, keeping the total of the two highest in the roll Results of 1 o...

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Motobushido: The Motorcycle-Samurai RPG
by Sophie L.
Publisher: Alliterated Games
Date Added: 12/02/2014 14:42:53
Motobushido: The Motorcycle-Samurai RPG A lot of the characters’ and setting’s history is created by the players. You don’t use dice but two decks of playing cards, one for the Sensei and one for the players. Most actions can be merely narrated; you only use the cards when it’s time to take risks (“Gambit”) or fight (“Duels.”) At first, the system is disorienting for those of us used to dice; it looks like no other role-playing game I can think of. Of all the RPGs I’ve played that used standard playing cards to resolve actions, this has the most enjoyable, tactical and interesting system. It blows the ones in Hillfolk/DramaSystem or Prime Time Adventures out of the water, for example. It’s not just a matter of having more cards, or higher cards; a lot of strategy can go into deciding when to escalate or concede, in order to save an advantage for later....

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Colonial Gothic: The Grimoire
by Timothy B. [Featured Reviewer]
Publisher: Rogue Games, Inc
Date Added: 12/02/2014 14:39:03
Colonial Gothic: The Grimoire This is an expanded and updated version of the older Colonial Gothic: Witchcraft book and the Colonial Gothic: Secrets book. Both of which are out of print. It also has plenty of new material as well. Chapter 1 covers new spells, Common and Arcane. The advantage of adding new spells to this game is one can easily say that the knowledge was just rediscovered. Some new book sent from overseas, an old book in the collection of a wealthy man or any other contrivance. There are quite a few new spells here to be honest. Chapter 2 follows with a discussion on spell books. Their uses and how to get them. A few sample books are also included. Chapter 3 introduces magical talismans to the game. Sort of Spell storing or keeping magical power. Not a lot here, but plenty of ideas. Chapter 4 covers the related chapter of relics, items that have magical ability to them due to divine providence or some other happenstance. Chapter 5 is dedicated to Witchcraft. Like the book it replaces, ther...

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Mars: Shadows of a Dying World (An OGL Guide to Monsters, Races, and Beasts)
by Clint S.
Publisher: Skirmisher Publishing
Date Added: 12/02/2014 14:31:50
Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Mars: Shadows of a Dying World (An OGL Guide to Monsters, Races, and Beasts) I enjoyed Shadows of a Dying World a lot! As a huge fan of Barsoom, I was especially pleased to see the attention to the source material, as well as to some of the less well known creatures of the world. Although it is OGL and compatible with versions 3.x of the world's most famous RPG, it would not be difficult to convert its contents to other games, using SoaDW as a guide.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Colonial Gothic: Gazetteer
by Timothy B. [Featured Reviewer]
Publisher: Rogue Games, Inc
Date Added: 12/02/2014 14:19:04
Colonial Gothic: Gazetteer This book calls itself a Gazetteer, but "Campaign Sourcebook" might be more appropriate. Written for the 1st Edition of Colonial Gothic it works just fine under 2nd Edition. Chapter 1 covers the history of the colonies from early English and Dutch colonization right on up to 1775. Principle wars are discussed and colonial growth covered. Chapters 2 through 14 cover the original 13 colonies in detail including basic demographics and major towns. Points of interest are also featured in each chapter as well as anything out of the ordinary. Chapter 15 is devoted to the Native American people. An overview of their history and cultures is given, but by necessity it is short. In truth an entire Colonial Gothic book could be done just on the various Native american tribes and nations. Te last chapter is a ready to run adventure, "A Surprise for General Gage". There are two Appendices. First a Glossary and then a Bibliography. I want to take a moment to point out that all of the C...

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Colonial Gothic: The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
by Timothy B. [Featured Reviewer]
Publisher: Rogue Games, Inc
Date Added: 12/02/2014 13:38:22
Colonial Gothic: The Legend of Sleepy Hollow This is a great little book to be honest. The first half is the story of Sleepy Hollow and the second half is how to use it in your Colonial Gothic Game. The geography of Sleepy Hollow, the Hudson and the Tapan Zee are discussed as well as Sleepy Hollow's role in history. It reads like a small campaign guide. This book is not very big, nor does it cost very much, but it is certainly punching above it's weight class in terms of content.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Colonial Gothic Bestiary
by Timothy B. [Featured Reviewer]
Publisher: Rogue Games, Inc
Date Added: 12/02/2014 13:32:34
Colonial Gothic Bestiary I have said it many times. You can never have too many monsters. The Colonial Gothic Bestiary satisfies that craving and then some. At 110 pages it is full of monsters and many are illustrated. The artwork varies. Personally I am a fan of the older wood cut images, but I know those are are difficult to find perfect representations of various beasts. The monsters themselves are a varied lot; some local monsters like the Jersey Devil and some "from back home" like the Gargoyle and Gorgon. I think this is a good mix, but I am more fond of the local fauna than something I can find in any book. I do have one nitpick (ok maybe two), first there is no Piasa Bird. A local legend from here in Illinois that I am surprised didn't make the cut. Supposedly the first mention of it is in 1673 (or the 1920s), Sure Illinois is way away from the Colonies. Though it was a very nearly a full state (1818) by the end point of the game, The War of 1812. The other was that the Chupacabra was include...

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Deep Magic: 13th Age Compatible Edition
by Timothy B.
Publisher: Kobold Press
Date Added: 12/02/2014 13:22:07
Deep Magic: 13th Age Compatible Edition If you're interested in expanding the spells available to your 13th Age character or campaign, look no further! With 555 new spells, this book is packed with an amazing variety of spells. 13th Age is my system of choice, but being fairly new to the RPG family, there hasn't been a lot of support for spell options until now. I often found myself working closely with my players to create signature spells that they'd envisioned -- a fun, but time-consuming process. With Deep Magic, I've recently been able to hand the book over to a player who had a clear vision for his PC, and he was able to create a character that was even cooler than he'd first imagined. The book provides 30 specialty schools of magic, as well as advice for GMs on how to make schools of their own. The schools are related to Kobold Press' Midgard Campaign Setting, but I had no problem re-fluffing the school's description to fit 13th Age's default setting, the Dragon Empire. The section on the use of mana points...

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Colonial Gothic: The Player Companion
by Timothy B. [Featured Reviewer]
Publisher: Rogue Games, Inc
Date Added: 12/02/2014 13:09:41
Colonial Gothic: The Player Companion This is the newest book (as of this writing) to the Colonial Gothic line. Mostly though this is related to the cover. As the title suggests this is a set of options for players of the Colonial Gothic game. We get a list of new skills and some additions to old skills. Normally I prefer it when a game reuses old skills in new ways, esp. point buy games where the budget per skill is not likely to change. After all Character A created with the Core has the same 45 points as Character B created with this book. In this case though it works both thematically and systematically. Chapter Two covers Advantages and Disadvantages. Characters are given 4 points to buy advantages and can also take disadvantages. Works pretty much like other systems in that respect, save there are not pages and pages of them (like for example GURPS). Most in fact are story related and can be used in conjunction with the character's Background. Chapter Three covers family and social status. A must have re...

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Wreck of Volund's Glory (13th Age RPG Adventure)
by Timothy B.
Publisher: Kobold Press
Date Added: 12/02/2014 12:58:05
The Wreck of Volund's Glory (13th Age RPG Adventure) I've run this adventure for both a group of experienced 13th Age players and a group with no tabletop RPG experience at all. In each case, we had a great time. This adventure is fast-paced, with enough options to prevent the players from feeling railroaded, yet without being so sprawling that newcomers to the hobby are paralyzed by overwhelming choices. The adventure is set in Kobold Press' Midgard Campaign Setting, drawing upon its rich geography and key personalities (icons). If you enjoy Midgard's other products and adventures, this adventure will fit right in with your collection. This adventure is particularly exciting, because for the first time, I didn't have to convert monsters, magic items, and NPCs into the 13th Age system -- something I've been doing for the past couple years with Kobold Press' Pathfinder and D&D 4E lines of products. I ran this as part of a campaign based in Midgard, as well as transplanting the adventure into 13th Age's default setting, the Dragon ...

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Valiant Universe: The Roleplaying Game
by Emma M.
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
Date Added: 12/02/2014 10:54:13
Valiant Universe: The Roleplaying Game I have now finally run a game of Valiant Universe, and can confidently report that I feel that many of the issues other reviewers have perceived with this system are, in my opinion at least, part of what makes this a must-have purchase. I've been a supers gamer for a long time. I've played and run the sublime (DC Heroes) to the ridiculous (Heroes Unlimited), and I've always noticed the same thing every time. In every group I've played in or run for, there is always at least one player who says "But I wanted my character to have (insert obscure power here)!" A lot of GMs are happy to hand-wave and come up with a rule on the fly, and that's great, but some systems actively support the 'go-anywhere-build-anything' mindset, Champions & M&M being the first two that spring to mind. But often, because of this, most of the first session is spent juggling points, calculating modifiers and getting migraines, all before a single die has been rolled. In Valiant, at last, we have a system that sa...

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Colonial Gothic: Rulebook Second Edition
by Timothy B. [Featured Reviewer]
Publisher: Rogue Games, Inc
Date Added: 12/02/2014 10:29:13
Colonial Gothic: Rulebook Second Edition The best thing about this book right out of the gate is it compatible with the older, and out of print, Colonial Gothic Rulebook. So all the books I have from Gen Con are still good. CG uses the same d12 based (I remember the guys at the Rogue Games booth going on with glee on how they used the often neglected d12!) system that you find in Shadow, Sword & Spell (I am not 100% sure, but both games look like they are completely compatible with each other). The core book comes in at 282 pages, plus covers. The second thing I noticed that this book is much better looking than the first core book. No slight against that book, but this one is a gem. The first book had a nice hip "indie" feel about it. This book manages to pull off "indie" and "big time professional" between it's two covers. I like that. But what is Colonial Gothic? From the book: Colonial Gothic is a supernatural historical roleplaying game inspired by the history and setting of the American colonial period, from th...

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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