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Slaves to Fate - Adventure for Symbaroum
by A customer [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/20/2020 10:57:07

Slaves to Fate is a 14-page adventure for Symbaroum that can be used as a stand-alone scenario or, more ideally, as the prelude to the Forever Winter saga.

In Slaves to Fate players find themselves at the center of a dire prophesy that leads to a frozen apocalypse known as the Forever Winter. Its also a dark and unforgiving adventure set in a dark and unforgiving setting, which by the way is part of its considerable appeal.

As the module begins, the PCs are slaves of a logging expedition intending to harvest lumber from the Everdark, a strange and horrifying forest. We’re quickly introduced to a new starvation rule which sets the tone for the adventure to follow; players will instantly realize they are in for a test of survival. While many other adventures have begun with PCs as slaves, its handled far better here than in most as players are given wide latitude in how they want to plot their escape. Its also dramatic: just as they begin to affect their escape the camp is set upon by beastmen that savagely rip everyone to bloody pieces. The newly-freed slaves must dive deeper into the forests if they wish to survive. Love that opening scene!

One of escapees—either a player character or NPC—is secretly an agent of a cult dedicated to bringing on the Forever Winter. This individual, known as the betrayer, secretly guides to party to a shrine deep in the forests where the ancient prophesy will be realized. There’s a wonderful opportunity for roleplaying here for a player who secretly takes this role, and because he is being controlled by a magical amulet which releases its hold once the Forever Winter is unleashed the character can continue forth in the campaign as a standard PC.

Here we’re also introduced to the Corruption rule, which tracks party members as they slowly fall under the sway of the amulet and become vassals in its ploy. Rolls are made but players shouldn’t know for what, which may cause paranoia among players. Adding to the paranoia is the sense that nature itself is against them: trees seek to entomb them, wolves attack, and redcaps (fey of the forest) shadow their moves.

The adventure culminates as the Forever Winter is unleashed. PCs are helpless to stop it; like the coming of seasons it is inevitable. Players may well feel a sense of doom and failure, but there is also the promise of a thrilling saga to come.

Layout is solid, with beautiful artwork bringing the adventure to life in all is dark glory. There are some editing and spelling mistakes, but they’re minor an easily overlooked for the strong storyline.

The best thing about this adventure? The grim mood, reminiscent of dark folklore, and the sense that one’s existence hangs on a razor-thin edge. Huge kudos for the atmosphere.

As a stand-alone adventure Slaves to Fate is a very good outing, but it truly comes into its own as the launch of an epic campaign.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Slaves to Fate - Adventure for Symbaroum
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ALIEN RPG Core Rulebook
by Anton R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/17/2020 06:34:33

This book shows how surprisingly detailed and interesting the Alien setting actually is. It's far from just surviving a monster infestation on a starship. This game will open doors for you to explore many classic sci-fi and cyberpunk themes. It's a solid modern TTRPG that allows a fast paced, engaging narrative with just enough abstraction, and brings a new fresh Stress mechanic. A simple, but effective mechanic that will keep your players on the edges of their seats. Totally worth giving it a try, even if you're not a fan of the franchise.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
ALIEN RPG Core Rulebook
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ALIEN RPG Core Rulebook
by Jonathan S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/22/2020 14:12:58

Full review here: https://www.rpg.net/reviews/archive/18/18421.phtml

Probably best known for their award-winning Tales From The Loop (2017), Free League continues its tradition of implementing their six-sided dice pool mechanic, dubbed Year Zero Engine. The basic resolution method is to roll a number of six-sided dice based on your character's skills and attributes, with any roll of 6 being a success. Multiple successes allow your character to do extra things, called stunts. Characters have four attributes: Strength, Agility, Wits, and Empathy which can vary between 2 to 5 during character creation based on choice of career and allocation of starting points. A characters Health equals their Strength score. Each attribute has 3 skills associated with it. The skills and their associated attributes are fairly intuitive. For example, Close Combat is a skill under Strength, while Ranged Combat is associated with a character's Agility attribute. During character creation, players allocate a number of points to their skills, and based on their career choice, these skills levels will vary between zero and 3, at least initially. Future character advancement can bring a skill level up to 5.

There are 9 career options for characters in Alien: The Roleplaying Game. Careers include the iconic Colonial Marine and the less obvious Kid or Medic. Each career archetype comes with one key attribute (which allows a starting score of 5), 3 key skills (allows a starting score of 3), and 1 talent. The talent is chosen from a list of 3 options for each career and can be thought of as a feat which allows the character to do something outside the normal skill system. Upon character advancement, more talents can be acquired later. Starting characters are also given a selection of starting gear depending on the career chosen. It is interesting to note that android is not a career option, but the game does provide rules for synthetic player characters. Androids can have any career and can be open about their artificial nature or pretend to be human. Obviously, this secret would require some discussion with your GM as the rules are slightly different for synthetics.

While still utilizing the dice pool mechanic, the game designers have definitely ratcheted up the complexity when compared to Tales From The Loop. The biggest change is the addition of Stress Dice (also six-sided dice). As characters interact with the sci-fi/horror of the Alien universe, their Stress Level will increase; for example, by pushing rolls or seeing a Xenomorph. When a character attempts an action requiring a roll, the player will also roll a number of Stress Dice equal to their Stress Level. As with the normal dice pool, a Stress Die roll of 6 is also a success. However, a roll of 1 on a Stress Die requires a roll on the panic table to see what happens. So, the Stress Dice have two effects: one is to increase the chances of success, and the other is to provide a chance for the character to panic. Depending on the panic roll and current stress level, the character may start to tremble uncontrollably or go berserk and immediately attack the nearest person or creature. Of course, there are many other results on the panic table besides those two. I like the panic roll mechanic because even though it might take away player agency (at least temporarily), it does create interesting situations and forces the characters to really act out their fear in ways that the player might not be willing to.

The core rulebook provides dice pool game mechanics for almost all actions in the Alien world: skill rolls, armor and cover, running out of ammo and other consumables, spaceship combat, explosions, fire, decompression of a spaceship, and radiation. Initiative and critical injuries are two game mechanics that don't use the dice pool system. In this game, initiative order is handled with a simple card draw (regular playing cards could be used) and critical injuries are rolled on a table (2d6; 11 to 66) whenever a character is reduced to zero health.

Campaign vs Cinematic One of the biggest strengths of this game are the two different modes of play: campaign and cinematic. While both game styles utilize the same game mechanics, they are very different in feel and intent. Campaign mode is self-explanatory if you have played roleplaying games like D&D: A group of players work together to advance a larger story over many play sessions, while the characters themselves advance in skill or power. Cinematic play is intended to be a one-shot or a few sessions that emulate a movie in the Alien universe. Players select from pre-generated characters that are assigned motivations and goals for that particular scenario. Character's goals will sometimes conflict and so player versus player combat is likely. As in any Alien movie, character deaths will be common and even total party kills are possible. My favorite aspect to cinematic play is that due to its one-shot nature, it is possible to have a player or two pretend to be something or someone they are not and sabotage the party. Is that pilot actually a corporate spy from Weyland-Yutani? Is our science officer a xeno-loving synthetic trying to make sure the crew is expendable?

Aliens This book includes about 4 pages dedicated to the Engineers, but game statistics are not provided so the assumption is that characters will not be fighting the Engineers. Instead the book describes the architecture and the technology of the Engineers so the characters can stumble upon one of their colossal Juggernauts or explore their ancient temples. But what about the eponymous Aliens? All seven life stages of the Xenomorph are detailed and statted out (egg, face hugger, chestburster, etc). Nine different adult forms of Xenomorph (drone, soldier, worker, queen, etc) are provided to stalk your player's nightmares. Alien Covenant's Neomorphs are also included with 5 different stages from egg to adult. Perhaps the coolest wrinkle here is that the Xenos and Neos don't just make normal melee attacks, they have signature attacks that can be randomly determined by rolling on a table. These signature attacks do interesting things such as causing victims to drop their weapon or forcing a panic roll in addition to causing damage. And if that's not enough to keep your players on their toes, there are four other extrasolar species detailed in the corebook.

World Building One of the strongest aspects of this book is the amount of quality material that went into describing the Alien universe. To start, the inside cover provides a map of the galaxy, color-coded by controlling faction. There is an entire chapter dedicated to describing the governments and corporations of the Alien universe, including the quasi-governmental body, the Interstellar Commerce Commission. In order to provide places for your space truckers and colonial marines to explore, this book describes 21 different star systems and some systems have multiple worlds of interest. And if that's not enough, multiple pages of tables are provided for industrious gamemasters who want to create their own star systems and planetary bodies. These tables include size, atmosphere, temperature, terrain, and colony size. To assist in sandbox-style campaign play, more tables are provided for generating job missions and complications whether your group is made up of explorers, cargo haulers, or marines. If you need a base of operations for your campaign, Novgorod Station is detailed here with maps, interior details, 5 unexpected events to spark an adventure, and 4 key NPCs to interact with. After that, a short scenario with maps is provided, called Hope's Last Day. This could be played as a cinematic prequel to Aliens, since the scenario takes place in the Hadley's Hope colony prior to Ripley's second visit to the moon LV-426.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Symbaroum - Quick Start
by Robert N. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/19/2020 08:57:49

This is a cool system, d20 based opposed rolls for most tasks, apparently all done by the pc. I like how the attributes are also descriptors that can be called different things to explain how a character operates. The setting is very atmospheric, and some of the best art I've seen to paint a mental picture of this world. Really sets a feel and tone.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Symbaroum - Quick Start
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ALIEN RPG Core Rulebook
by Xuming Z. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/08/2020 02:43:06

I've read this book and I have to say good! I'm a fan of Alien, Predator and Prometheus series. The rule in this book is really matched on Alien stories because most of rules are concentrated on expressing the sense of space biological horror such as Stress Dice mechanics and Panic Roll. And the rules to simulating the life on space is strongly reflect a truth about how weak our human are among this endless space, like critical injuries, lack of food/water and a number kinds of aliens.

But I suggest that this game could sorted out this large number of rules and enlist a reference sheet to help Players making their Characters or Ships easily. That can save more time and let Players and GMs pay more attention to write stories.

I'm looking forward to more storybooks and new sets to complete the setting of Alien/Predator/Prometheus universe, and I wish this game can publish an official rule for supporting Players to act as Alien, Engineer, even Predator! By the way, we need Chinese and Japanese edition! (^o^)\/



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
ALIEN RPG Core Rulebook
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ALIEN RPG Core Rulebook
by Ch D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/05/2020 23:31:24

Fantastic game, really nails the horror and tension that the franchise is known for.

My only possible complaint is that the book has a ton of dead space taken up by (gorgeous) artwork which adds probably a ton of length to an already lengthy rulebook. As a symptom of this it is not printer friendly at all. I would probably ppay for an edited down version with just the game rules and more printable backgrounds.

backgrounds.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
ALIEN RPG Core Rulebook
by Tony B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/18/2019 16:18:47

I love the First three movies (to me its a Trilogy) and I used to enjoy Role Playing Games ... so purchasing this was a High priority for me. I read some of the reviews and decided it was a " no brainer" to add it to my Digital library. Sooo I got on one or three of those Survey, paid with Paypal and now I am re exploring the ALIEN Universe with this awesome created product. Great job in the production and Awesome reviews helped me buy this product.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
ALIEN RPG Core Rulebook
by Bryce E. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/17/2019 14:03:44

The layout is pretty poor and the book is literally hundreds of pages longer than it should be because of that. Info that should be on a single page is badly spread across two and not even on facing pages. Its core strength is the cinematic scenario. I would not recommend for campaign play.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
ALIEN RPG Core Rulebook
by Alex C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/11/2019 07:36:15

I've been following the development of the Alien RPG for quite awhile, including getting the Chariot of the Gods scenario / partial ruleset several months ago as part of a pre-order. I could gush for paragraphs about how much I like this game, but or this review I'll just hit some key points:

A love of the franchise. There's a lot of attention to detail in the rulebook and entire chapters of worldbuilding information I didn't even know as a fan of the Alien movies (namely the Earth governments and some of the corporations). The canonical universe here firmly includes the events of Prometheus through Alien 3. There's also some hints and nods to Alien novels and comics I'm less familiar with. A lot of effort has been made to make a game universe that's more interesting and engaging than 'you fight a Xenomorph for the tenth session in a row.'

More than a bug hunt. There's great support for 'Cinematic' play, the kind of Alien movie everyone-dies one-shot you can have a lot of fun with, but they haven't skimped on support for long campaigns. The three frameworks for campaign play--space truckers, colonial marines, and frontier colonists--capture the general feel of various Alien movies and books and helps guide play towards their themes. There's a buttload of tables for mission generation for each framework, as well as tables for rolling up your own new star systems, planets, colonies, etc. Ironically, one of the best things about the Alien RPG is all the ways it helps you do more than just fight Xenomorphs.

Danger, horror, tension. The stress dice mechanic and Panic rolls for player characters can create singular intense moments or continued problems as everything goes to Hell in a handbasket. The game constructs sensible combat rules and then uses them to show you just how dangerous the Xenomorphs are. Cinematic agendas and playbook (class) abilities can give you an edge or help you survive--but some of them come at a cost to your fellow humans. GM guidelines offer helpful advice for running the game, creating tension, and knowing how to alternate danger with solace to create an engaging game.

Okay, so I did end up going on for paragraphs. But I could have gone on for MORE paragraphs, in my defense. The TL;DR is that if you're at all a fan of the Alien movies, this is a worthy RPG for the franchise. If you're looking for something new in the genre of a horror or sci-fi RPG, this is a worthwhile pickup.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
ALIEN RPG Core Rulebook
by Matthew T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/11/2019 04:56:10

OK, cards on the table. I am credited in this book. BUT leaving aside any bias, I can assure people this is a great game. I have played, and run it, a lot since April of this year. It's a fast and simple to learn system, with a core machanic that is will be familiar to players of other Free League games. Within that spectrum, it tends towards the simpler end, closer to Tales from the Loop than Mutant Year Zero or Forbidden Lands.

It's a perfect introduction to the hobby for new players, and well as a satisfying game for more exoerienced ones. It has a very elegant stress mechanic that raises the stakes and really captures the feel of the films.

It is set just after Alien 3, but the lore is set out in a a way that groups and take or leave the recent prequels.

The artwork is perfect, and really shines on the screen.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Mutant: År Noll - Den Grå Döden
by Mikael M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/29/2019 08:01:36

Nostalgitripp på hög nivå, med bra blandning av gammalt och nytt! Ett trevligt äventyr där det finns alla möjligheter för spelarna att hamna i trångmål. ;)



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Mutant: År Noll - Den Grå Döden
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Forbidden Lands Core Game
by Orin J. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/20/2019 16:22:04

Full disclousure: this game would like you to have three good sets of differently colored D6s, a handful of other dice, a deck of cards, and if possible a second deck of specially made cards to play. there's a lot of different things going on with the mechanics and i can honestly say it's easy to get overwhelmed.

If that doesn't instantly turn you off, good news! Forbidden lands is a rich, colorful dark fantasy setting where all the races have interesting things about them, conflict is both rife and as risky as it is rewarding and the stories in the world are a great background to play off. this is an RPG that seeks to bring the lessons of roleplaying today to you alongside the colorful and unsoftened trappings of the first RPGs, good for new players or old vets.

as i got it free as part of a promotion, 5 stars.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Forbidden Lands Core Game
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ALIEN RPG Cinematic Starter Kit
by BEnoit G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/12/2019 09:32:56

Wow! We played the trailer (I guess it is the Beta) this week end, and I have to say that this game is really promising. I can't wait to see the rest of the book!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
ALIEN RPG Cinematic Starter Kit
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Symbaroum - Game Master's Screen
by Adrian S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/01/2019 18:57:29

I always use a GM screen, mostly as a handy space for those oft-used charts and tables (when not covered in my own sticky notes). The Symbaroum Screen is an incredibly useful resource that accompanies me to every game. Aside from the excellent and considered selction of charts and tables, the artwork is evocative and helps to set the scene. A must-have for all Symbaroum gamesmasters.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Symbaroum - Game Master's Screen
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Symbaroum - Advanced Player's Guide
by Erik L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/29/2019 07:22:27

This is almost a must have if you are playing Symbaroum, I would not let the new races into my games for the players, but the Boons and Burdens is an idea I like and many of the new abilities are a good addition. There also some new Powers and Rituals that I think could fit well into many games.

I have not used the much from the Alternative Rules, a couple of the Maneuvers mostly, and that is another thing I like. You don't have to go all in on the Alternative Rules, you can pick what you and your group want and skip the rest.

If you enjoy Symbaroum but would be willing to add some more things into your game, this is probably a book for you.

I am not well versed in these modern ways where you either rate something 5-stars or 1-star, this is probably as good as you can make a supplement book and get a solid 4 from me.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Symbaroum - Advanced Player's Guide
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