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    Cascadia Adventures 2: The Lost Girl
    by Mysterious B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/15/2012 16:39:29

    A nice little adventure that involves investigation of a missing young woman that can be played out over the course of a one-shot or a convention game, players will have an ample opportunity for a full range of actions but role playing is certainly advised over gun play. Not to say, that the players will not have the opportunity for a firefight but the opposition is easily over able to overcome any party’s weaponry. Nicely comes with pregens that play well into the storyline, as important contacts, in different locales is ascribed to each character pairing them up with a possible NPC helper. Adventure reminded a bit of Firefly and Dollhouse at the same time; which is not a bad thing, as I liked both series. High quality maps of important locales are provided. My only criticism, and that is beyond the writer’s control is that the OGL did not allow him to explore a darker and grittier narrative...but that can be for individual Referees to cater and make their own adventure out of the sketch provided. Another adventure is promised and hopefully we will see a few more plots twists and turns but if players often don the white hat, they will have to get their hands dirty in Classic Traveller traditions, if they are to save the day.



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    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Cascadia Adventures 2: The Lost Girl
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    21 Plots III
    by Mysterious B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/15/2012 16:38:27

    Adventure seeds that give the 1D6 range of possibilities gives the Referee who is pressed to insert an encounter while busy preparing the main adventure for the game the following session are always handy. GKG has come up with 21 more seeds for the Referee to use with or just change the data to suit either a 3I or Home Brew campaign. The only thing that this is missing, as the plots series seem to be growing is an index (and better yet a cross index with previous offerings) of Who (Patron types), Where (locales), What (job, as described entailed) and WTF (what the job may actually be). However, I am given to understand that the publisher might be incorporating this idea at a future date. So, kudos again for GKGs for coming up with a believable and enjoyable set of adventure hooks that do not deal ultimate MacGuffins or recycle old Science Fiction tropes from familiar movies or TV shows. Looking forward to the ultimate assembled volume when it will be 21 to the power of 21 plots...



    Rating:
    [4 of 5 Stars!]
    21 Plots III
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    Subsector Sourcebook 4: Sequoyah
    by Mysterious B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/08/2012 08:40:45

    Yet another collection of worlds from the good folks at Gypsy Knight Games, however, this one is a marked shift from previous offerings… it is better than the previous Space Operish submissions (if that is your Schick then you still will have two Sectors to play with) – this subsector has a Hard SF foundation giving it almost a 2300AD feel. The worlds described could easily be ported over to 2300AD with minimal adjustments thus providing a new set of adventures for players to engage it.

    The real question – how? Well, if you follow Gypsy Knights’ campaign setting – an unstable wormhole was discovered in Earth’s local neighborhood that allowed humanity to cross a vast distance in a short period of time and build up a civilization where the grass was greener. With the collapse of the wormhole, these isolated worlds fell back and created new polities somewhat derived from old Earth and somewhat new creations. And, this what makes Gypsy Knights’ products so great – they present entire worlds as wholes each replete with their own dating system, cultures, and history plus the obvious astrography for each system. Traveller tends to focus upon what is commonly referred to as the Main World but Gypsy Knight gives us the whole planetary system. Previous contributions, more or less followed the classic Traveller mold of having largely nice worlds (i.e. Earth-like and Earth-surrogates) with very few hellholes but this product outlines worlds that would be difficult to settle and present a real sense of a frontier.

    Gypsy Knights is a company that is actively involved in learning throughout all its products delivering higher and higher quality products. Therefore, if you are looking to expand your Traveller game especially in the 2300AD direction without the baggage of the “official” history this product would product a convenient side step into a truly Alternative Traveller Universe. Complaints? Few… one of the things that the revised Mongoose version of 2300AD highlights is that even in 2300AD, the colonization of space will still include outposts, isolated colonies on potentially inhospitable places. This supplement wonderfully gives us the world but not so much the feeling of the frontier colony. One way to do this is merely have a system composed of a tin can (i.e. a Space Station) over an inhospitable world – its placement can be strategic (either military or resource-wise). Yes, colonies would try to make the best of it but essentially creating relationships of dependence between different worlds thus stitching the background more closely together.

    A good Referee can already do this with this product but trade routes are not highlighted owing to the origin of this product being individual worlds that a Referee can select to their Traveller Universe and the desire of Gypsy Knights Games not to burden the reader with too much background (i.e. forcing players/Referees to adopt their history). This is a balancing act that they have managed to succeed in doing with this product. So, if want an excursion into Hard SF and do like the premise of lost Earth colonies growing up amongst the stars – then you should definitely check this product out. If your tastes veer more toward Space Opera and quasi fantastical settings – then the other Gypsy Knight products will give you an entire Sector to play in. However, this subsector, for me shows growing level maturity in their setting and is tune with the current market which is more Hard SF oriented than to have one dimensional worlds in which players enact the role of “tourists in trouble” rather than genuine Travellers. For contained within are hundreds of adventure seeds waiting to blossom into full fledged adventures/campaigns.



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    Subsector Sourcebook 4: Sequoyah
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    Cascadia Adventures 1: Save Our Ship
    by Mysterious B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/10/2012 11:59:19

    A nice little adventure that involves search and rescue for a lost ship and an important personage. The adventure can be adapted to any Traveller setting but is best suited the Gypsy Knights own milieu for it fits hand and glove. That said there are plenty of interesting NPCs and offers also a non-violent or a violent solution which is commendable to the end of the adventure.

    The drawback of the adventure is that it is rather linear best suited for Convention-style play and the PCs do not have character protraits - my ongoing beef with most game publishers - for my players choose characters as much on appearance as stats...it is a power trip fantasy that they are seeking and portraits do just that. Similarly, NPCs portraits are also absent. So, were it possible notch this review half a notch toward good. For it is good but not very good. There is some sandbox play but it is curtailed by meeting important NPCs which is fine.

    Inclusion of the playtest notes as a separate PDF would have been a nice touch, as sometimes I got lost who is doing what to whom. But, overall an excellent first adventure that dovetails and uses effectively all GK Games published materials to date.



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    [4 of 5 Stars!]
    Cascadia Adventures 1: Save Our Ship
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    Hub Federation
    by Gerald M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/03/2012 18:56:10

    I just have too say this was amazing. I have not played your setting but just reading this setting can fire up all kinds of potential scenarios. You take Traveller to a new meaning and it is really nice to see these great alternatives to the OTU.



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    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Hub Federation
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    Subsector Sourcebook 3: Hub
    by Mysterious B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/05/2012 15:28:02

    Much better than previous offerings because it is more realistic. More care was put even into the artwork (ie - they the gas giants and Tech Level right). As with previous Gypsy Knight subsector guides - great care and thought goes into mapping out the worlds within by providing an elaborate social structure and relationships between the citizens of the world and particular uniqueness of the world. There are no cookie cutter worlds in this volume. My only hope is when this goes to print all the volumes regarding Hub get put into one book. Otherwise, great stuff.



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    Subsector Sourcebook 3: Hub
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    21 Organizations
    by Mysterious B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/18/2012 15:39:43

    A Careers book for the Hub Federation that take the standard Traveller career chargen and overlay a specific set of modifications to make the fit with the Hub Federation (the less than vast interstellar polity) that GKG has been building. An excellent little volume but just wish that it could been combined with the main Hub Federation book for the same price of the latter.



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    [4 of 5 Stars!]
    21 Organizations
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    Hub Federation
    by Mysterious B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/17/2012 07:51:46

    At last, Gypsy Knight Games has revealed their setting to the public. And, the suggestions that have been planted along the way now make sense. This rather small offering is meant to act as the matrix to view their Quick World series and purely optional which is its strengths. There is no attempt to foster the Hub Federation onto players and referees but rather it is a tool for understanding this campaign better. Its history is plausible and fits well with the Quick Worlds. The drawback of this book/campaign is that the worlds are rather underpowered compared to the extent of power projection needed to hold an Empire or Federation together. The art and text would suggest a much more higher powered Federation than TL A,B. But, that is a quibble more than a complaint. It resembles the OTU in many ways, so much, so that it could serve a parallel to a modified OTU (ie no Vilani at Bernard's Star - rather have them further Coreward and a 2300AD setting dominate until some time into the future). Thus, I can see, if one wants to leave the OTU, this product allows you do so. However, it has much softer edges than Outer Veil so not compatible with that fine product and yet is not as soft as Terra-Sol. So, if Referees and Players are longing for a lower powered Traveller Universe - this represents an excellent compromise.



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    Hub Federation
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    Quick Worlds 20: Atargatis
    by D. D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/01/2012 02:00:37

    Extremely poor. The planet is barely described, we don't know much about the climate, plants or lifeforms, economic activities or anything. Just a bunch of data thrown on pages. There is no ambiance, no charm at all. Also, the map of the planet is a joke. At least it is free so you can see for yourself.



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    [1 of 5 Stars!]
    Quick Worlds 20: Atargatis
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    Subsector Sourcebook 2: Franklin
    by Timothy L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/30/2012 16:14:46

    Loved the detail. I wished more mainstream products would do it. I have to do a lot of that sort of thing myself. I run a naval campaign, and it is important some time for the players to know this kind of stuff. The descriptions gave a good framework without saying do it our way or else. Plenty of seeds. I did miss some of the trade info and the fact they have no bases on a world was a little off.



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    [4 of 5 Stars!]
    Subsector Sourcebook 2: Franklin
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    21 Plots: Planetside
    by Mysterious B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/16/2012 09:15:00

    In this short supplement Gypsy Knight Games goes again to producing excellent adventure hooks that are resolutely grounded in a stout Traveller feeling. The format is the consistent with previous 21 Plots, a small basic setup for the scenario then the Referee can choose one of the outcomes or roll 1D6 and wholly freeform it or put together a comprehensive “one shot” replete with maps, stats and whatnot. What makes these adventure seeds so Traveller is that they grounded in a down-to-earth and unclean future where people’s jobs may be in space, but, they still remain jobs – everyday smoes who have a possibility at becoming local heroes.



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    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    21 Plots: Planetside
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    Subsector Sourcebook 2: Franklin
    by Mysterious B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/18/2012 15:02:10

    Another fine collection of worlds that puts another puzzle piece in place for this Alternative Traveller Universe. Filled lots of adventure hooks and interesting locales guaranteed to inspire any Referee when the brain rot sets in...and they need to come up with a ready made subsector for adventure. Once again, excellent art (with one exception noted below) dominates the work as does clear and entertaining writing. The book is significantly bigger than the previous one but still gives lots of excellent coverage of the numerous worlds in question - no real duds just familiar tropes gently spoofed or retreaded upon. However, if there is one criticism is the repeated use of the stock art for some of the worlds especially that of Saturn whose orbital tilt, colouration and prominent ring system is obvious that is Saturn - no matter what they call it. I would suggest putting it through different colour filters and changing the orbital tilt to make it less recognizable when the final print version appears. Otherwise, can hardly wait for the print.



    Rating:
    [4 of 5 Stars!]
    Subsector Sourcebook 2: Franklin
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    Quick Worlds 20: Atargatis
    by Mike B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/10/2012 13:00:45

    well laid out. Easy to use and understand. Please make more worlds to use.



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    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Quick Worlds 20: Atargatis
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    Quick Worlds 20: Atargatis
    by Brett K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/03/2012 05:05:51

    Quite good. The download page did not tell me when the download had finished. It clicked the link again, then went and checked my downloads folder and saw I had 2 copies. The quality of the PDF is quite good. The layout is neat and clean and easy to read. A legend for the world map would be nice. Good job all round.



    Rating:
    [4 of 5 Stars!]
    Quick Worlds 17: Tal'Kalares
    by Alexander L. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 01/17/2012 07:02:31

    Originally Published at: http://diehardgamefan.com/2012/01/17/quickworldsfortraveller/

    Quick Worlds 17: Tal’Kalares – A cleverly laid-out dense atmosphere world, with a series of “convenient” plateaus that provide standard atmospheric pressure. A solid hook into ancient alien terraformers. Wilds down in the denser “Bottoms” where well-designed and thought through animal encounters are likely. A matriarchal society, albeit not an oppressive one. And plenty of chance for adventure as you tie in visits to the “Bottoms” and the discovery of pre-colonial artifacts that have been found there – Is the government keeping other finds secret, or have they just not found anything else yet?

    So you’re GMing a game of Traveller, and your players decide to pull a fast one on you. No matter how you guide them, they have made up their minds to pull up stakes and head to a different system, abandoning the one on which you invested so much time in setup and preparation. They hop in their Free Trader and hit the jump button, arriving somewhere else entirely, expecting you to pull adventure and excitement out of your… well, you know where.

    What do you do?

    Of course you can just stop your game for a while, pull out the books and generate a world, or even pick one off of the map you have drawn up with some loosely generated world stats. Then you’re either wasting more precious gaming time coming up with new plots and hooks and double-crosses, or you’re winging it for the rest of the session.

    Or you can pull out one of the Quick Worlds series from Gypsy Knight Games!

    Each supplement is a complete survey of a system in it’s entirety. Everything that can be easily detailed is, including a full survey of all of the stars, planets, moons and the like in the system, as well as the civilizations that reside upon them.

    Most of the books come with some depiction in addition to the text of the layout of the system, either with a map of the orbits, or for a world with a significant number of moons, a map of that world and all of her satellites. In addition, the primary world will be mapped out in the traditional, “world as a 20 sided die” Icosahedral projection, with indicators of terrain type and the location of major cities and starports.

    At the world level, descriptions of the terrain and atmosphere, as well as the presence of any seas of note are made, as well as a general survey of the climate on the world. Major cities are discussed, and government and legal systems are broken down in more detail than can be represented by a single die-roll. This tends to be where the plot hooks begin to pop up in inset boxes, with indications of how real conditions are in comparison to how the world itself wants to be perceived. Each city and spaceport is described, to some level of detail, without going into too much depth..

    Finally, further information about the system as a whole, and how it interacts with visitors and its neighbors is discussed, and plot hooks and ideas are expanded upon, with a focus upon the sort of character background that might find a reason to come to this particular world – be it a mercenary company that could be hired to put down a rebellion, or an agent or scoundrel working one side or the other of a smuggling operation.

    The content of the books are top notch and generally useful. The presentation, on the other hand, leaves a little something to be desired. Already short texts, the first two pages of each PDF are the cover art and credits, and the last two are the standard licensing boilerplate, leaving some of the books to less than ten total pages of content. This wouldn’t be the end of the world for a $4 product, but a frank look at the presentation of that content immediately shows where layout tricks were employed to pad things further. Margins are a full inch and a half, with an additional half-inch “gutter between the two columns. Combine this with a 14 point font, and things go quickly from “published book” to “freshman English essay” territory.

    A better solution, albeit a less financially beneficial one, would be to take these guides and merge them together into a series of books. Each one would have two, three, or even five complete systems in them. The font could be normalized, and the margins shrunk, and it would still give 20 or so pages of solid content, which could be sold for a very understandable $12 or so.

    Are they useful? Heck yes – they can be a real lifesaver. That said, I don’t know that I’d invest in them myself, as I could fairly easily generate these statistics from Book 6:Scouts (Classic Traveller), and come up with the necessary military, political or corporate intrigue on my own. If you’re just starting out, though, they make a great primer on what real preparation for a “sandbox” game looks like.



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    [3 of 5 Stars!]
    Quick Worlds 17: Tal'Kalares
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