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The Pipeline: A Call of Cthulhu Scenario for the 1980s
por Ian C. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 09/12/18 10:12:54

The Pipeline is more than just a Call of Cthulhu scenario. Inside you will find some really good options for making the environment come to life, adding a bit of NATURAL horror to the usual supernatural! This product also contains great handouts, maps, new equipment, NPCs, and more... greatly adding to the value of the product in my opinion.

The environmental options are really well presented and they make sense. They provide you with a lot of options, while not forcing you to add anything you don't want should you feel the game is already deadly enough for your particular group. Personally, I like my horror games as deadly and scary as they can get, so I'm certain I'll get good use out of these new rules!

The next part of the book is the scenario itself. The guys have really done a great job with the presentation here, laying out a thorough and easy to follow timeline and really going into great detail on all of the locations and scenes. Oh, and there are a LOT of them, too! This is not a one shot scenario, and I expect it to last at least three sessions for most of my usual groups. The locations and scenes are laid out in a sandbox fashion, and aside from the timeline of events that will occur without player character intervention there isn't any railroading to be found here.

The handouts presented are plentiful and of great quality. They do a great job of supporting the aesthetic of the scenario, and are easy to make use of whether gaming at a live table or via online play.

The final portion of the book details dozens of potential NPCs, presents 8 pregen characters should you need them, and detail some of the new/unique equipment for this scenario. All of this is supported by some great images and artwork!

I would be remiss if I said nothing but nice things about this product, and I do have one minor complaint and foresee one potential complaint from some other prospective players and GMs. My only complaint is to do with the copy editing. There are a lot of mistakes in the text regarding grammar and spelling. It really isn't a big deal, but if you're a bit pedantic like me it's sure to be a little annoying. The second thing I alluded to is the extremely high lethality of the scenario. This is definitely not a problem for me, as I love my Cthulhu games deadly as Hell no matter which side of the screen I'm on, but I could see some people in the scene getting pissy about it. In total fairness, the writers have put a warning right on the front cover!

In conclusion, this is an excellent supplement for Call of Cthulhu, on par with some of the great official Chaosium releases in my mind! It looks great, reads great, and pretty soon I will get to find out just how great it plays!



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Mizuumi no bakemono
por LUDOVIC D. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 09/07/18 17:32:22

This scenario is a very good start for a quick, funny and nice introduction to the Myth of Cthulhu in Japan. It is not common to have a Cthulhu adventure in this country, so it is particularly interesting. The choice of the main Japanese “monsters” is also well chosen as they remind you some of the monsters of the Myth and are quite common in Japanese Mythology (Read the author comments).

The author is also definitively creating a real Japanese Atmosphere where he leads you to his Story. Everything is well documented, so it is not difficult to find his path into the adventure and feel the vibe of it.

I think that this Scenario is particularly well adapted for new players who want to experiment some Cthulhu adventures in modern time and not common place like Japan.

The translation in French of the PDF is a very good initiative and definitively a “plus”! (Thanks for it!)



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Plague
por Alex S. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 08/28/18 23:46:44

Players loved it. Daunting at first to run that many NPCs at once, but the end result was 3/4 screams of terror and 1/4 screams of delight as investigators split up and started busting in and out of apartments like a madcap farce gone horribly awry. Randomized epidemiology gave ample rope for PCs to theorize as they made their way through things.



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This Old Haunted House, Too
por Dan C. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 08/26/18 20:04:03

This is an excellent "battle map" resource. The houses included range from simple farmhouses to sprawling mansions to full-on, walled-off estates. It covers architectural styles from the mid-1800s to 1910 or so. A few maps list the kitchen as a "hall"; I mention it just to save other readers from momentary confusion. The diagrams are otherwise clean and easy to read.



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RuneQuest - Roleplaying in Glorantha
por Jay S. A. [Crítico destacado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 07/24/18 03:40:15

The new RuneQuest Roleplaying in Glorantha by Chaosium is an incredible product. Blessed with fantastic artwork, lovely layout and writing that could only come from the heart of someone who truly, absolutely loved the setting, reading RuneQuest was a heck of an experience.

Myths and Stories

RuneQuest’s setting of Glorantha has seen many incarnations and rightfully so. It’s a land that feels like a real myth, and the practices of the people in the land and their magics and beliefs are so grounded in what could have been that simply exploring that could fuel me for entire campaigns.

It’s rare that I find a setting so well adapted to sandbox campaigns, where the point is to help your community see the next year with healthy children, a larger herd of cows and the blessings of your Gods. Gone are the traditional “Chosen One” and “Murderhobo” formats, replaced instead with the simple (but difficult) task of living.

As I Live And Breathe

Few settings are so well explored in terms of the daily lives of its denizens as Glorantha. I remember early on that I came to RuneQuest hoping that it could deliver the same sense of culture as Legend of the Five Rings.

Now I find myself praying that the new edition of Legend of the Five Rings can relay their setting with the same care and attention to detail as Glorantha was presented in RuneQuest.

Everything and everyone has a place and a role, and Adventurers are motivated and constrained by their role in their communities. It’s a beautiful social ecosystem that never feels contrived or made-up. And even in the absence of some world-shattering horror or Big Bad Evil Guy, there’s plenty to do.

The Rules

RuneQuest is a product of an older era of game design, and it shows. It’s not quick, easy or narrative. The rules don’t fade into the background as you play, and combat determines the smallest thing from where you hit to how much damage it does, and if it harm’s the target’s armor. I see a lot of slow combat and plenty of rules look ups early on and feel a great need to own a GM’s screen.

And that suits me fine.

RuneQuest is a stellar example of a game that knows what it wants to do. Combat is detailed because we’re playing out a simulation that is ugly, dirty, and likely to leave everyone injured. Magic is detailed, and full of requirements and considerations and options for ritual add-ons because you’re entreating spirits or gods to show you favor.

The rules aren’t there to obscure the moment: they’re there to highlight it.

So while I won’t reach for RuneQuest for Fast! Furious! Fun! I will use it when I want to tell a tale of heroes that reads like the Literary Epics rather than a Marvel Cinematic Universe movie.

Downsides

Not everything is perfect though. RuneQuest Roleplaying in Glorantha is a fantastic product, but it does feel incomplete. Without a bestiary (a concern now addressed with the release of the book just a few days ago) the book itself is less of a complete experience.

Also missing are chapters devoted to teaching people to run RuneQuest. While there is no shortage of inspiration, I had hoped that it would include more advice on how to start and what kind of adventures one could run for it. I’m approaching this review as a GM who has run all sorts of games so what might be obvious to me may be a concern to new GMs who picked up RuneQuest only to find that there wasn’t enough support for them right out of the gate.

I know there’s a GM book in the works somewhere, but I wish that and the Bestiary came out at the same time if only to give the full experience.

Conclusion

RuneQuest Roleplaying in Glorantha is a glorious game, and much like reading the epics, is extremely rewarding if you sit down and put some effort into reading it. The rules are complex but fit together in the manner of a Swiss watch, and the setting only makes it even more impressive.

It’s not fast, nor narrative, nor does it want to be. It knows it’s place, and doesn’t try to reach out to other spaces when it completely dominates at what it is. I would highly recommend it to GMs looking for a setting that can sandbox extremely well, has a wonderful sense of mythic realism, and isn’t intimidated by the reputation it has.

Chaosium has wowed me consistently from day 1 with my experiences with Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition, but RuneQuest is the one game that has knocked me off my feet and made me a believer.

Get it, study it, and fall in love with it.

I know I have.

Thanks for reading my review. This is a fraction of a huge 10-article "Let's Study" review series on my blog that you can find over at https://philgamer.wordpress.com/tag/runequest/ There you'll find a breakdown of the contents and impressions of the major chapters of the book.



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山里にて(At the Mountain Village)
por Steven R. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 07/16/18 17:19:54

This was the first Miskatonic Repository scenario that I have run for my group, and I must say that it was a whole lot of fun. At The Mountain Village takes place in the Taishō period, so the time frame is firmly in the Call of Cthulhu 1920s era. It's a very straight forward narrative that gives both keeper and players a lot of room to rollplay, and room for keepers to add their personal touch to the scenario. One thing that stood out for me was that there wasn't a mythos-driven explanation that informed Japanese beliefs, which can happen in weird fiction and in Call of Cthulhu games. All in all, I'd run it again, especially as something to introduce new players to the game.



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Cthulhu Now
por Jim C. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 07/14/18 20:40:54

Though other campaigns have gone further, this really pioneered the idea of Mythos gaming in the modern day. Forensic Pathology and the adventures still seem worth a look.



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Pickman's Legacy
por Jay K. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 07/11/18 18:10:29

Despite not being familiar with the original Pickman story, the story for this one-shot was not difficult to follow. Everything was laid out in a clear manner, and made everything easy to follow. The hand outs were neat, and adds a level of immersion.

I would recommend reading through the story a few times to make sure that you know where all the dice rolls are.

Overall I would definitely recommend this one-shot. It has an interesting premise, is neatly organized, and well put together.



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Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition - Keeper's Rulebook
por Monica G. [Crítico destacado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 07/08/18 10:49:13

Call of Cthulhu is one of the oldest and (in my opinion) best role-playing games out there. It has withstood the test of time, having been around for over 3 decades. Where most games are about heros gaining power and finding treasure, this game is about ordinary people fighting for their lives and sanity against extradimensional monsters. It turns the standard RPG format on its head, making it one of the best role-playing games out there. Based on the writings of H. P. Lovecraft, this game (run by a 'keeper') pits the players (investigators) against the ancient evils of Lovecraft's Cthulhu mythos. The 7th edtion of Call of Cthulhu carries on the tradition of the game, but with some modifications to the rules that we've seen in previous editions.

Though this book is longer than previous editions at over 400 pages, the setting information has been paired down to the 1920s and modern day, leaving out the rules for 1890s-era games that were present in earlier editions. A few other small things are missing, such as a few spells (no Hands of Calubra, for example), and the seminal adventure 'The Haunting', which is available in the 7th edition Quick Start Guide. Call of Cthulhu has been known for making small rule changes in each new edition, but 7th edition brings some rather big changes. Skills such as 'punch' and 'headbutt' have been folded into the 'fight' skill. That's a good thing for a game that's not particularly combat-heavy. As well, players now have the option to 'push' their roles after a bad role to try to eke out a victory with a very high cost for failure. It potentally adds more dice rolling, but it can make for interesting story-telling. Failing a pushed roll while casting a spell, for example, can have horrible consequences--but it can really make the game memorable. As well, players now roll for a level of success based on their percentile in a skill/attribute. The resistance table is now gone, and opposed rolls only need compare successes. This can really streamline game play. Another welcomed change is that of rules for chase sequences, which is something that Call of Cthulhu really needs, given how often characters need to run from horrible monsters. Though these are probably among the biggest mechanical changes to the game in its history, they keep the spirit of the game and add a bit more to it. Not to mention that this edition has lots of alernate rules scattered throughout to be used at the Keeper's discretion.

There is one subtle, but noteworthy addition to the game--it's expanded character creation system. There are now tables of background options that help players flesh out their characters who must deal with a personal history that plays a part in the struggle to maintain their sanity later in the game. Though not a big strict mechanical addition, it impacts gameplay and certainly brings more role-playing to the game. Unfortunately for players, the game has not necessarily gotten any less lethal, so the sting of losing a Call of Cthulhu character (not an uncommon occurence) may just be greater in this new edition.

Overall, this is another great addition to the Call of Cthulhu gaming system. The game still has the same basic feel of the game that's been around for 30 years, but with a system that benefits from some significant updates. It's a great game for veterans and new players alike. We look forward to reviewing more of Chaosium's books for 7th edition Call of Cthulhu.

Read the whoe review at GeeksAGogo.com!



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Alone Against the Tide
por Michael F. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 06/18/18 09:49:17

Alone Against The Tide is my personal favorite outing for solo investigations for Call of Cthulhu. I have played all three of the current products available for 7th: Alone Against The Flames, Alone Against The Dark, and this one.

This investigation represents a nice mid-range experience that feels meatier than Flames, yet not as daunting as Dark. It includes classic Call of Cthulhu investigative aspects, use of a broad range of skills, and some harrowing decisions. I played through my first time as a private investigator, and that seemed like the ideal profession for the nature of the story and the skill requirements. Yet, I felt like other archetypes could be successful and I will select new professions on subsequent playthroughs. There is a nice mix of professional and social skills used in the investigation.

Choose Your Own Adventure-style games like this one benefit from branching pathways and this investigation does it in three ways. First, there are entries that you will go to that will give you multiple different choices that you can investigate as thoroughly as you would like and the order doesn't matter. Then, there are “limited-time” choices in which the available time that your Investigator has prevents you from investigating all choices. Finally, there are entries that truly take the story in different directions and may not allow you to return. Tide has a good combination of all of these staples of Choose Your Own Adventure CoC.

The top positive for me is that the author strikes a nice balance of challenge and player agency. Hardcore classic Call of Cthulhu investigations tend to be “one mistake and you die with no chance of saving yourself, ha ha, you fool!” Gygaxian roleplaying. I felt this way about Dark, which is disconcerting because the cost of failure for Dark is extreme, in my opinion. Many players like this and that is fine for them. However, the other side of this coin, from a Keeper perspective, is that choice should drive roleplaying to some extent. This author employs an entry style whereby the player does not automatically reach an end with no choice or chance to deviate/escape. This was my big criticism of Alone Against The Dark and it is thankfully more judiciously attenuated to here. Granted, it is always a challenge to write to a broad audience of gamer styles, but I think this author has successfully accomplished that!

My only suggestion for improvement would be consideration of the extent to which the beginning of an investigation such as this should have some “useful recommended skills.” I can see both sides of the argument. On one hand, suggesting skills might suppress creativity of character creation. On the other hand, Call of Cthulhu investigators normally have a party of multiple people that allows for skills to complement each other. Building characters for solo investigations can be slightly different than building characters for a party. Veteran players will automatically go to the Holy Trifecta of Call of Cthulhu skills (Library Use, Spot Hidden/Listen, and a social skill). One of those is not used at all. Newer players may benefit from some suggestions. I think it is worth noting that there is a segment of the role-playing hobby that does not have access to groups to play with and so I think it is useful for solo investigations such as this to work to help those players get started.

All in all, the Miskatonic Repository is allowing fans to produce great content for each other and this is no exception. I found the suggested price to be well worth it.



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The Idol of Thoth
por Customer Name Withheld [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 06/01/18 06:16:23

A great scenario for an evening of great CoC entertainment. It is especially good for introducing new players and/or having a new GM for running the game.This could easily fit into a 4 hour window, which is great for running at a convention. It is well written and well thought out. I hope the creator makes more. On a side note, the creator also has a live play podcast called How We Roll, which is an excellent source for CoC and D&D game listening pleasure.



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Legs
por Haydn B. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 05/30/18 02:20:18

I ran this lil scenario when it was available on their site. It's a good bit of fun, and hey the price is right



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Masks of Nyarlathotep
por T. D. S. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 05/19/18 10:29:46

I agree that in many ways this classic adventure is somewhat atypical, especially when compared with the investigation heacy Tatters of the King. Lots of monsters, lots of action, lots of mortal danger. But, consider adapting it to the recent Pulp Cthulhu supplement. This far flinging adventure, that has you taking down a friggin rocket being built by evil mad-genius cultists in a volcano as a climax, is a perfect match in theme and content for Pulp Cthulhu. Personally, I upped the timeline to coincide with the 1934 eclipse, and juiced up a few encounters here and there, but it is pretty much ready to roll as a pulpy adventure.



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The Idol of Thoth
por Hector M. G. G. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 05/11/18 02:46:43

Great scenario. Full of useful tips and advices for GMs. The story is great, lots of investigation oportunities, closed enough to be pretty straight forward but with plenty of moments for improvisation or to even add more research moments, false clues and so if you want a longer game. I haven't finished it yet (just finished the first of two sessions), so I don't really know how the end is going to go, but for now my investigators have no clue of what's going on. They have a lot of clues with no apparent connection and are about to get some action and revelation moments. It's going to be great. On the bad side, there are a few mistakes in the texts, like NPCs changing last names, almost word by word duplicated text on consecutive paragraphs and such. It may need revision. But it doesn't affect the scenario at all, it's just editing mistakes. This is going to be a scenario I'll run several times with different groups, I'm sure of that.



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Alone Against the Flames
por Chris G. [Comprador verificado] Fecha en que fue añadido: 05/04/18 14:28:03

Alone Against the Flames was fantastic! I absolutely love the format. I highly recommend it. A great introduction to Call of Cthulu. I loved the small village setting- very characterful.



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