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Demon Translation Guide
by Anton G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/18/2019 15:34:51

If you're a die-hard fan of Demon: the Fallen like I am, and practically had a heart attack when you saw that this was getting made, then let my words spare you the coronary: this thing's a bust. What we have here is a valiant, but ultimately slap-dash attempt to construct a translation guide that instead comes across as an incredibly one-sided and imbalanaced. It pains me to write this, as there are some solid things going on in the book, and some neat ideas in play, but Onyx Path simply didn't put in the effort necessary to make this what it needed to be. There is a lot to say, but I'll keep my critique to three main points.

  1. Poor organization: The TG attempts to give fluid rules for porting characters between systems, but unfortunately ends up creating a slurry of information, where Descent info blends together with Fallen info, making it hard to keep the two separarate. In addition, there are some strange redundancies with some things, particularly Merits (Pacts are still listed as a Merit, but that Merit has been replaced by the Thrall Merit, which is itself difficult to find). Further, none of the Lores have explicitly spelled-out dice pools, and attempting to decipher which Attributes and Skills are needed for each is tedious and inefficient. Overall, the book shoud have been organized with greater distinction.

  2. A lot of missing data: the TG covers character conversion and basic powers, but says nothing about some of the most critical systems from the old game, such as empowering Thralls, rituals from the old Player's Guide, or rules for exorcism and the devouring of demons by their peers post mortem. These missing pieces of info make attempting to run D:tF with the new rules incredily frustrating, as players have fewer rescources to give their characters, and STs will be left struggling to help their players complete common demon-related tasks.

  3. The Apocalyptic Powers: possibly the most infurating part of the whole book, instead of going through the Demon Player's Guide and methodically converting each power for the sake of clarity and conciseness, and perhaps altering or trimming some away to keep things clean and efficient, OP instead opted to simply convert some powers and treat the rest as rebranded versions of powers from D:tD. This causes a host of redundancies as well as some bizarre alterations to the designs of some powers that in no way mirrors their orginal function or intent, and can potentially derail a character concept. This is the most egregious sin, for not only does it make porting a character over incredibly messy, but it undermines Fallen in favor of keeping Descent at the fore, and makes it seem as though OP is putting Fallen in the backseat in favor of highlighting Descent.

In conclusion, the Demon Translation Guide is a competent work, and the rule conversions therein are a fitting update for bringing Fallen into the CoD system, but its glaring flaws and poor organization make it difficult to use at best, and an absolute nightmare at worst. I leave here an open statement to the staff at Onyx Path:

Dear Mss. and Messrs.,

I understand that creating works like this is a monumental undertaking, and your efforts must not be overlooked, but if you want to create something that fans will appreciate, and more importantly buy, you must ensure that the necessary effort is put into it. If this means putting more writers on the project, prolonging development, or even making a Kickstarter page for it, then do it, because I guarantee that a legion of loyal patrons and fans like myself are ready and willing to contribute to see the game we love so much be reborn, and you will enjoy both critical praise and financial success in the long-run.



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[2 of 5 Stars!]
Demon Translation Guide
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Vampire: The Requiem 2nd Edition
by Michael L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/08/2019 16:05:18

I got the wrong version - twice!

First of all, the website is so bad when trying to check out, it actually double charged me! I decided to keep both copies because my group needed two anyway - but it wasn't intentional and was an unwelcome charge on my card!

Secondly, BOTH copies are the wrong version! I ordered the premium printing, but both are definitely not that version. I have a premium version of another Onyx Path book, Changeling: The Lost, and it's GORGEOUS. Glossy pages, popping color, the characteristic holo-effect covers.

Both of these books came in the wrong quality that I paid for, and I'm very disappointed.



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[1 of 5 Stars!]
Vampire: The Requiem 2nd Edition
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Vampire: The Requiem 2nd Edition
by James M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/02/2019 11:52:26

I received my physical book in the mail today. I ordered the Standard heavyweight and I am pleased with the qulity for the price paid. I have been reading the PDF for the past week. As for the content; it was through sheer ignorance and contempt that I ignored New World of Darkness/Chronicles of Darkness for so long. I am a huge fan of VtM and was not very willing to give Requiem a try. I, like others, was enthralled by the meta plot of VtM and was not willing to stay the course. Then I started listening to Mathew Dawkins, "Gentlemans Guide to Gaming" reviews of VtR, and now I wish I had given it a chance during its original release. The emphasis on personal horror is paramount, and something that I feel may have been lost over the years in VtM (re-explored in V5 however). I really do like that fact that You, as the ST, and your troupe of players are writing the plot as you go. There is no overarching Meta plot to adhere to. Now before I come off as bashing the old, I will state that I love VtM. The game literaly changed my life. But Requiem is a different beast all its own, and it definetly deserves your attention, especially the 2nd edition iteration. The only misgivings I have about this book is what I feel is very uninspired art. Most of the pictures fail to draw any attention, and the few that are descent are very overshadowed by the bad. I especially don't like the the clan pictures. Art is not a deal breaker for me though, by any stretch. The book is fantastic and Im anxious to start develpoing my chronicle. 5/5 from me.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
V20 Dread Names, Red List
by Björn L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/27/2019 07:06:58

The following review was originally published in Mephisto 62 and translated from German (find orignal German review below).

Dread Names Red List

Dread Names Red List is a new edition of The Kindred Most Wanted for V20. The source book revolves around the most feared vampires on the Red List as enemies of the Camarilla. The so-called alastors devote all their attention to the hunting of these 13 vampires.

The source book begins with a brief overview of the vampire traditions and the Red List, as well as how they interact with the Camarilla. The reader learns how the Red List was created and how vampires are added to it. The interaction between inner circle, justiciars and alastors is also described.

The second part of the book is dedicated to the Red List itself: The Anathema - the most wanted enemies of the Camarilla - are each described extensively with their biography, but also with their game stats. The spectrum ranges from Karen Anatos, an actress who threatens the masquerade, to Keminitiri, the ancient vampire of the Followers of Sets who threatens her own clan as well as the Camarilla. The spectrum of these vampires is broad, and actually the portrayal also considers the development of the past years, because some vampires of the previous version are no longer on the Red List, but there are some new additions.

The third part of the book consists of specific playing advice. Here alastors are presented as player characters and possibilities are shown how to integrate the Red List and the Anathema into the game. There are a handful of new discipline powers, and the final chapter introduces a missing path: the Path of Evil Revelations. Also some rituals of the Dark Thaumaturgy are added.

Dread Names Red List is the exciting source book to read, and the presentation of the anathema gives a lot of background to the game. However, you can only use this book if you want to play alastors - which is a very special game background.

(Deutsche Version)

Dread Names Red List ist eine Neuauflage von The Kindred Most Wanted für V20. Das Quellenbuch dreht sich um die gefürchtetsten Vampire, die als Feinde der Camarilla auf der Roten Liste stehen. Der Jagd dieser 13 Vampiren widmen die sogenannten Alastoren ihre ganze Aufmerksamkeit.

Der Quellenband gibt zunächst eine kurze Übersicht über die Traditionen der Vampire und die Rote Liste, und wie diese mit der Camarilla zusammenspielen. Der Leser erfährt, wie die Rote Liste entstanden ist und wie Vampire auf diese Liste gesetzt werden. Hierbei wird auch das Zusammenspiel zwischen Innerem Zirkel, Justiziaren und Alastoren beschrieben.

Den zweiten Teil des Buches macht die Rote Liste selbst auf: Die Anathema – die meistgesuchten Gegner der Camarilla – werden jeweils umfangreich mit ihrem Lebenslauf, aber auch mit ihren Spielwerten beschrieben. Das Spektrum reicht von Karen Anatos, einer Schauspielerin, die die Maskerade bedroht, bis hin zu Keminitiri, die als uralte Vampirin der Jünger Sets ihren eigenen Clan aber auch die Camarilla bedroht. Das Spektrum dieser Vampire ist breit, und tatsächlich berücksichtigt die Darstellung auch die Entwicklung der letzten Jahre, denn einige Vampire der vorherigen Version finden sich nicht mehr auf der Roten Liste, dafür gibt es einige Neuzugänge.

Der dritte Teil des Buches besteht aus konkreten Spieltipps. Hier werden Alastoren als Spielercharaktere vorgestellt und Möglichkeiten aufgezeigt, die Rote Liste und die Anathema in eine Spielrunde einzubauen. Es gibt eine Handvoll neuer Disziplinkräfte, und das letzte Kapitel stellt einen bisher fehlenden Pfad vor: den Path of Evil Revelations. Zudem werden noch ein paar Rituale der Dark Thaumaturgy ergänzt.

Dread Names Red List ist als Quellenbuch spannend zu lesen, und die Vorstellung der Anathema vermittelt viel Hintergrund zum Spiel. Konkret einsetzen kann man dieses Buch jedoch eigentlich nur dann, wenn die Spielrunde Alastoren spielen soll – was ein sehr spezieller Spielhintergrund ist.

(Björn Lippold)



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[4 of 5 Stars!]
V20 Dread Names, Red List
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Vampire 20th Anniversary Edition: The Dark Ages
by Björn L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/27/2019 07:02:39

The following review was originally published in Mephisto 64 and translated from German (find orignal German review below).

Vampires: The Dark Ages Twentieth Anniversary Edition

It is now more than 20 years ago that the vampires of the role-playing game of the same name were not only allowed to frighten the modern age, but were also able to cause trouble in the dark nights of the Dark Ages. Vampire: The Dark Ages is a new edition for the 20th anniversary, which as a thick hardcover volume compiles a lot of material from old source books anew. The structure is that of the classic rulebook, in which the setting, but above all the clans and character creation as well as the disciplines of the vampires are presented in detail.

The new edition tries to put together a lot of clan material. Instead of the 13 classic clans there are 28 clans and bloodlines in this book, which also include the African vampires, the Laibon. Also clans, which were introduced as esoteric groups by the regular Vampire, can be found here. Some clans are redefined, which still works well with the Kyasid, but in the case of the Niktuku, it compresses a great vampire secret into (too) simple rules. Beside the clans also the different paths (Roads), thus the ethical systems, of the vampires are explained and provided with differentiated variants. For example, the Via Caeli exists in Christian, Jewish and Islamic forms. The chapter on the disciplines, with its 130 pages, is also very detailed, and here, too, you will find some changes to the rules in addition to well-known powers.

Of course, the book also contains material for the game master, both on the basic structure of the campaign and concrete game material in the form of character profiles. A relatively short chapter examines the specific setting in more detail and focuses on the Italian states, which become the standard setting here. The rest of Europe is also briefly presented, whereby in many places the focus is more on human history than on vampire influences. The fact that the new edition takes place in 1242 means that the invasion of the Mongols also plays a role, and some events from the classical timeline are already part of history here.

Some clan secrets provide the conclusion of the book, where besides pure background information also variants of clans and their paths can be discovered. and find it again. In the case of the Salubri, for example, an alternative course of history is formulated as a what-if scenario.

Vampires: The Dark Ages is a beautifully made, summarizing set of rules for playing vampires in the Dark Ages. With regard to the clans and their discipline, information from all possible sources has been meticulously compiled and adjusted. In some cases these adaptations bring more consistency, in other cases the inclined reader may ask himself the question why of all things the Niktiku have to be freed from their mysterious fascination in this way or how the Nagaraja got lost into medieval Europe.

If you want to immerse yourself in the world of vampires in the Dark Ages, you will find all the rules here. In order to get more background to the ( vampiric ) Dark Ages, however, you will not be able to avoid some history or rule books. Vampire: The Dark Ages is an excellent summary for collectors who want to revel in old memories.

(Deutsche Version)

Nun ist es inzwischen mehr als 20 Jahre her, dass die Vampire des gleichnamigen Rollenspiels nicht nur die Moderne unsicher machen durften, sondern auch in den finsteren Mächten des Mittelalters ihr Unwesen treiben konnten. Vampire: The Dark Ages ist eine Neuauflage zum 20. Jubiläum, die als dicker Hardcoverband viel Material aus alten Quellenbüchern neu zusammenstellt. Der Aufbau ist dabei der des klassischen Regelwerks, in dem das Setting, vor allen Dingen aber die Clans und die Charaktererschaffung sowie die Disziplin der Vampire ausführlich vorgestellt werden.

Hier zeigt sich, dass die Neuauflage vor allen Dingen versucht, viel Clan-Material zusammenzustellen. Statt der 13 klassischen Clans finden sich hier in diesem Buch insgesamt 28 Clans und Blutlinien, die auch die afrikanischen Vampire, die Laibon, umfassen. Auch Clans, die beim regulären Vampire als Exoten eingeführt wurden, finden sich hier wieder. Dabei werden einige Clans durchaus umdefiniert, was bei den Kyasid noch stimmig wirkt, im Falle der Niktuku aber ein großes Vampirgeheimnis in (zu) einfache Regeln presst. Neben den Clans werden auch die verschiedenen Pfade (Roads), also die ethischen Systemen, der Vampire erläutert und mit differenzierten Varianten versehen. So gibt es die Via Caeli in christlicher, jüdischer und islamischer Ausprägung. Auch das Kapitel zu den Disziplinen ist mit seinen gut 130 Seiten sehr ausführlich, und auch hier findet man neben altbekannten Kräften einige Änderungen an den Regeln.

Natürlich gibt es in dem Buch auch Material für den Spielleiter, sowohl zum grundsätzlichen Kampagnenaufbau als auch konkretes Spielmaterial in Form von Charakterprofilen. Ein relativ kurzes Kapitel beleuchtet das konkrete Setting etwas genauer und stellt die Staaten Italiens in den Vordergrund, die hier zum Standardsetting werden. Der Rest Europas wird auch kurz vorgestellt wobei an vielen Stellen der Fokus eher auf der menschlichen Geschichte als auf den vampirischen Einflüssen liegt. Dadurch, dass die Neuauflage im Jahr 1242 spielt, spielt auch die Invasion der Mongolen eine Rolle und einige Ereignisse aus der klassischen Zeitlinie, sind hier bereits Geschichte.

Den Abschluss des Buches bieten einige Clangeheimnisse, wobei sich neben reinen Hintergrundinformationen auch noch Varianten von Clans und deren Pfaden wiederfinden. Im Falle der Salubri wird jedoch beispielweise ein alternativer Geschichtsverlauf als Was-wärewenn-Szenario formuliert.

Vampire: The Dark Ages ist ein schön gemachtes, zusammenfassendes Regelwerk, um Vampire im Mittelalter zu spielen. Bezüglich der Clans und ihrer Disziplin wurden hier akribisch Infos aus allen möglichen Quellen zusammengetragen und abgeglichen bzw. teilweise angepasst. In einigen Fällen bringen diese Anpassungen mehr Konsistenz, in anderen Fällen stellt sich der geneigte Leser eventuell die Frage, warum ausgerechnet die Niktiku in dieser Form von ihrem geheimnisvollen Zauber befreit werden müssen oder wie sich die Nagaraja bis ins mittelalterliche Europa verirren.

Wer in die Welt der Vampire im Mittelalter eintauchen will, findet hier alle regeltechnischen Informationen. Um mehr Hintergrund zum (vampirischen) Mittelalter zu bekommen, wird man aber um einige Geschichts- oder Regelbücher nicht herumkommen. Für Sammler, die in alten Erinnerungen schwelgen wollen, ist Vampire: The Dark Ages auf jeden Fall eine hervorragende Zusammenfassung.

(Björn Lippold)



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Vampire 20th Anniversary Edition: The Dark Ages
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The Cainite Conspiracies Anthology
by Björn L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/26/2019 12:18:46

The following review was originally published in Mephisto 64 and translated from German (find orignal German review below).

The Cainite Conspiracies

The Cainite Conspiracies is an anthology of short stories from the world of Vampire: The Dark Ages. Not surprisingly, each clan gets its own short story, which illuminates the atmosphere of a clan, its secrets or even the intrigues and conflicts of the medieval nights with the help of a well-chosen character.

The stories are as different as the clans themselves, and the way the story is told also varies considerably. Thus some examples illustrate vividly the conflicts between the clans and the intrigues at the medieval courts, while others refer to great events in the past and in the future. In the case of the Assamites, there is even a tale of an event that has serious implications for the entire clan.

As different as the themes and the narrative styles are, as different is the quality of the stories from my point of view. Some of the short stories immediately captivate the reader and build up suspense, others don't really make a connection to the protagonist. The portrayal of the medieval world of vampires is also varied. Sometimes the setting seems comparatively generic, sometimes historical elements and places are deliberately included.

The Cainite Conspiracies manages to provide a pretty good insight into the world of vampires in the Middle Ages and is an entertaining reading, but not essential for the game.

(Deutsche Version)

The Cainite Conspiracies ist ein Anthologieband mit Kurzgeschichten aus der Welt von Vampire: The Dark Ages. Wenig überraschend bekommt hier jeder Clan seine eigene kurze Geschichte, die anhand eines ausgewählten Vertreters das Flair eines Clans, seine Geheimnisse oder auch nur die Intrigen und Konflikte der mittelalterlichen Nächte beleuchtet. Die Geschichten sind dabei so unterschiedlich wie die Clans selbst, und auch die Art der Erzählung variiert deutlich. So illustrieren einige Beispiele sehr schön die Konflikte zwischen den Clans und die Intrigen an den mittelalterlichen Höfen, während andere Geschichten Bezug auf große Ereignisse in der Vergangenheit und in der Zukunft nehmen. Im Falle der Assamiten wird sogar ein Ereignis erzählt, das schwere Auswirkungen für den gesamten Clan hat.

So unterschiedlich wie die Themen und die Erzählstile sind, so unterschiedlich ist aus meiner Sicht auch die Qualität der Geschichten. Einige der Kurzgeschichten ziehen den Leser sofort in den Bann und bauen Spannung auf, andere plätschern gefühlt ein wenig dahin und schaffen es auch nicht, einen wirklichen Bezug zum Protagonisten zu schaffen. Auch das Bild, das sie von der mittelalterlichen Welt der Vampire vermitteln, ist unterschiedlich. Mal wirkt das Setting vergleichsweise generisch, mal werden sehr gezielt historische Elemente und Orte mit einbezogen.

The Cainite Conspiracies schafft es einen ganz guten Einblick in die Welt der Vampire im Mittelalter zu geben und ist eine durchaus unterhaltsame, aber für das Spiel nicht notwendige Lektüre.



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[3 of 5 Stars!]
The Cainite Conspiracies Anthology
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V20 Ghouls & Revenants
by Björn L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/26/2019 01:35:41

The following review was originally published in Mephisto 62 and translated from German (find orignal German review below).

Ghouls & Revenants

Ghouls & Revenants is the source book about ghouls and revenants for Vampire. The source book begins by describing the themes and moods used when playing with ghouls. Then there follows a long chapter describing the different roles of ghouls but also of the revenant families. The chapter explores the origins of the ghouls and gives some hints on the bigger background story of Vampire. The fact that ghouls are given a more important role can be seen, for example, in the four age groups, because ancient ghouls are also mentioned, which are very powerful and initiated into many secrets.

The second chapter is dedicated to the rules and above all to the blood bond that determines the existence of many ghouls. However, other mechanisms such as the handling of disciplines, aging, healing, frenzy, clan weaknesses etc. are also dealt with. This is followed by a chapter on the role of the ghouls, which shows how the various sects deal with them. A section is dedicated to each of the established clans, describing the particularities and tasks of their ghouls. Also some organizations of the ghouls themselves are presented, which have the potential for further conspiracies.

The revenants are presented with their contradictory history and the different families. It quickly becomes clear that there are some secrets entwined around the families.

Central element is the character creation, which describes the different steps and characteristics for ghouls. This also means that new skills, backgrounds and advantages/disadvantages are introduced. The conclusion is a narrative chapter that highlights various aspects and peculiarities when using ghouls as player characters. A number of sample ghouls including animal ghouls, Szlachta and Vozhd complete the book.

Ghouls & Revenants presents the subject of ghouls and revenants very comprehensively and offers a successful mixture of rules and background information. The key question for deciding to buy is what role you want to give ghouls in the game: This book is certainly too extensive for a mere marginal appearance, but those who want to work with ghouls as player characters will not be able to ignore this book. And also those who want to get to know the complete world of darkness will find interesting approaches here.

(Deutsche Version)

Ghouls & Revenants ist der Quellenband über Ghule und Wiedergänger (Revenants) für Vampire. Der Quellenband beschreibt zunächst, welche Themen und Stimmungen beim Spielen mit Ghulen Anwendung finden. Danach folgt ein langes Inhaltskapitel, das die verschiedenen Rollen von Ghulen aber auch der Wiedergänger-Familien beleuchtet. Dabei erkundet das Kapitel die Ursprünge der Ghule und liefert einige Hinweise auf die größere Hintergrundgeschichte von Vampire. Dass Ghulen eine wichtigere Rolle beigemessen wird, sieht man z.B. an den vier Altersstufen, denn es werden auch uralte Ghule erwähnt, die sehr mächtig und in viele Geheimnisse eingeweiht sind.

Das zweite Kapitel widmet sich den Regeln und dabei vor allem dem Blutband, dass für viele Ghule die Existenz bestimmt. Aber auch andere Mechanismen, wie der Umgang mit Disziplinen, dem Altern, Heilung, Raserei, Clanschwächen usw. werden abgehandelt. Danach folgt ein Kapitel zur Rolle der Ghule, das aufzeigt, wie die verschiedenen Sekten mit ihnen umgehen. Jedem der etablierten Clans wird ein Abschnitt gewidmet, das die Besonderheiten und Aufgaben ihrer Ghule beschreibt. Auch einige Organisationen der Ghule selbst werden präsentiert, die Potenzial für weitere Verschwörungen liefern.

Die Wiedergänger werden mit ihrer widersprüchlichen Entstehungsgeschichte und den verschiedenen Familien vorgestellt. Hier wird schnell klar, dass sich um die Familien einige Geheimnisse ranken.

Zentrales Element ist die Charaktererschaffung, die die verschiedenen Schritte und Besonderheiten für Ghule beschreibt. Das bedeutet, dass auch neue Fertigkeiten, Hintergründe und Vor-/Nachteile eingeführt werden. Den Abschluss macht ein Kapitel zum Erzählen, das verschiedene Aspekte und Besonderheiten beleuchtet, wenn Ghule als Spielercharaktere benutzt werden. Eine Reihe von Beispiel-Ghulen inklusive Tier-Ghulen, Szlachta und Vozhd runden das Buch ab.

Ghouls & Revenants stellt das Thema Ghule und Wiedergänger sehr umfassend dar und bietet eine gelungene Mischung aus Regeln und Hintergrundinformationen. Die entscheidende Frage für den Kauf ist, welche Rolle man Ghulen im Spiel einräumen möchte: Für eine reine Randerscheinung ist dieses Buch sicherlich zu umfangreich, doch wer mit Ghulen als Spielercharaktere arbeiten will, der wird um dieses Buch nicht herumkommen. Und auch wer die komplette Welt der Dunkelheit kennen lernen will, findet hier interessante Ansätze.

(Björn Lippold)



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
V20 Ghouls & Revenants
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World of Darkness 20th Anniversary Character Sheets
by Robert B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/25/2019 16:28:03

Why, oh why, did they leave off the Dodge skill on the Character Sheet?



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[4 of 5 Stars!]
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Reign of the Exarchs Poster
by Justin S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/20/2019 02:46:29

Great poster, great art.

But it's folded in half, rather than rolled up. I'll let the people know.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Reign of the Exarchs Poster
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M20 The Art of Mage: 20 Years and More
by Charles S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/19/2019 01:20:29

I love this book.

It has all the great stuff of the Revised Art of Mage book, but updated. Similar amount of art, though slightly less dense. But that lower density is replaced by words describing the process and discussing the art, which is excellent. Best of all, most of the artists have links to their websites, in case anyone has it in them to commission or even just buy prints of pieces they love.

Also, though the Matt Korteling entry, I learned that Mage Minis exist, which...rather surprised me (WoD never seemed super great at tactical combat stuff that minis are good for) and I just hope that someday, whoever has the rights to them at the moment sells them or the files required to 3d print them.

The discussion of signature characters is excellent, covering characters from the beginning of Mage all the way through new ones created for Mage 20. Particularly nice given the lack of a Mage Who's Who book.

Overall, I recommend it even for people who aren't big into art books, it's also an excellent retrospective on Mage and includes bits of vision for its future.



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M20 The Art of Mage: 20 Years and More
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Exalted: Map of Creation Poster
by Michael K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/14/2019 22:07:27

Wish it came in a bigger size, but it works for my goal of getting my players to scribble where thier towns are.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Exalted: Map of Creation Poster
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Wr20 Handbook for the Recently Deceased
by Björn L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/13/2019 15:00:48

Review from Mephisto 69 Online Add-On (https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/261389/Mephisto-69-Online-AddOn), translated from German (find orignal German review below)

Handbook of the Recently Dead

In addition to the Wraith: The Oblivion Anniversary Edition, the Handbook of the Recently Dead is a small, inexpensive addition aimed at beginners. In three chapters, the book provides useful tips for assuming the roles of psyche, shadow and game leader.

All three chapters are helpful to familiarize yourself with the complex subject matter of Wraith and integrate it piece by piece into the game. While two chapters are really good tools for players, the game master chapter seems a bit out of place, as there are already some tips here that players might not want to read. For a complex role-playing game like Wraith it is a good idea to extend the introduction with such an additional book.

Deutsche Version

Zusätzlich zur Wraith: The Oblivion Anniversary Edition gibt es mit Handbook of the Recently Dead eine kleine, preiswerte Ergänzung, die sich an Einsteiger richtet. In drei Kapiteln vermittelt das Buch nützliche Tipps, um die Rollen von Psyche, Schatten und Spielleiter zu übernehmen.

Alle drei Kapitel sind hilfreich, um sich in die komplexe Thematik von Wraith einzuarbeiten und diese stückweise ins Spiel zu integrieren. Während zwei Kapitel wirklich gute Hilfsmittel für Spieler darstellen, wirkt das Spielleiter-Kapitel etwas deplatziert, da hier auch schon einige Tipps stehen, die Spieler vielleicht nicht lesen sollten. Für ein komplexes Rollenspiel wie Wraith ist es aber eine gute Idee, den Einstieg mit einem solchen Zusatzwerk zu erweitern.

(Björn Lippold)



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Wr20 Handbook for the Recently Deceased
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Wraith: The Oblivion 20th Anniversary Edition
by Björn L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/13/2019 14:56:21

Review from Mephisto 69 Online Add-On (https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/261389/Mephisto-69-Online-AddOn), translated from German (find orignal German review below)

Wraith: The Oblivion 20th Anniversary Edition

"You're dead" - these words could be the beginning of character creation at Wraith, because the former fourth system of the World of Darkness, for which the anniversary edition was published somewhat late, revolves around the topic of ghosts.

In Wraith, the player characters have just died and are thrown into a terrible world, because unlike the rest of the world of darkness, the Shadowlands are a very strange place. As long as the ghosts are still young and bound by earthly passions (Passions) and anchors (Fetters), they exist in the Shadowlands, which appear as a dark image of our reality. Here they can see and influence the world of mortals a bit, but this is neither easy nor allowed by the current regime. Beneath the Shadowlands exists the Tempest, a dangerous chaos in which there are few safe islands. And below is the labyrinth, where the forces of complete annihilation lurk.

The realm of the dead of the western world Stygia has a long history and the social order of the dead is complex. There is the Hierarchy, which is divided into eight legions (according to the type of death) and which is the state in Stygia, so to speak - and of course, there are renegades and heretics who oppose the current order. There are also the guilds, which were formed on the basis of the special abilities of the spirits (Arcanoi). What is more important for player characters is the fact that the only raw material in the world of ghosts is souls - i.e. many unfortunate newcomers suffer the fate of ending up as raw materials in the melts of Stygia.

At first glance, Wraith's character creation has many parallels to other games in the World of Darkness. There are the usual attributes and skills, and with the Arcanoi, spirits have supernatural abilities with a broad spectrum. Here, too, ghosts have a dark side, but Wraith takes unusual steps, as ghosts are basically divided into two halves: the psyche represents the personality and the shadow bundles all negative traits. Normally the psyche has the upper hand, but the shadow can manage to wrest this control from it. Unfortunately, the Shadow doesn't want anything else but to destroy the ghost - however, not by a simple suicide action, but by more perfidious plans. In fact, the Shadow of the Psyche can even help out with bonus dice, and the player has to decide whether or not to make this risky pact. The special thing about Wraith is that the role of Shadow is taken over by another player, so each player plays a Psyche and a Shadow. This gives the Dark Side a real role in the game - and of course there are rules mechanisms that allow the Shadow to take control or pull the psyche into a personal nightmare scenario.

The anniversary edition of Wraith goes even further, rounding it off with many pages of earlier sourcebook material on the guilds, spectres, risen, and the other realms of the dead, and even addresses the former spin-off Orpheus.

From my point of view, Wraith is the darkest and most difficult to play system in the World of Darkness, but it offers a lot of innovative ideas and an exciting background - and in the Anniversary Edition it offers the perfect all-inclusive package in one book.

Deutsche Version

"Du bist tot" – mit diesen Wor ten könnte die Charaktererschaffung bei Wraith beginnen, denn das ehemals vierte System der World of Darkness, für das etwas verspätet die Jubiläumsausgabe erschienen ist, dreht sich um das Thema Geister.

Bei Wraith sind die Spielercharaktere frisch verstorben und werden in eine schreckliche Welt geworfen, denn im Gegensatz zur restlichen Welt der Dunkelheit sind die Schattenlande ein sehr fremder Ort. Solange die Geister noch jung sind und durch irdische Leidenschaften (Passions) und Anker (Fetters) gebunden sind, existieren sie in den Schattenlanden, die als dunkles Abbild unserer Realität erscheinen. Hier können sie ein wenig die Welt der Sterblichen sehen und beeinflussen, was aber weder leicht, noch durch die geltende Herrschaftsordnung erlaubt ist. Unter den Schattenlanden existiert der Sturm (Tempest), ein gefährliches Chaos, in dem es nur wenige sichere Inseln gibt. Und darunter liegt das Labyrinth, in dem die Kräfte der kompletten Auslöschung lauern.

Das Totenreich der westlichen Welt Stygia hat eine lange Geschichte und die Gesellschaftsordnung der Toten ist komplex. Hier gibt es die Hierarchy, die sich in acht Legionen (nach Todesart) unterteilt und sozusagen der Staat in Stygia ist – und natürlich gibt es Renegaten und Ketzer, die sich der geltenden Ordnung entgegenstellen. Hinzu kommen die Gilden, die sich anhand der speziellen Fähigkeiten der Geister (Arcanoi) gebildet haben. Was für Spielercharaktere relevanter ist, ist die Tatsache, dass der einzige Rohstoff in der Geisterwelt Seelen sind – d.h. viele unglückliche Neuankömmlinge erleiden das Schicksal, in den Schmelzen von Stygia als Rohstoff zu enden.

Auf den ersten Blick hat die Charaktererschaffung von Wraith viele Parallelen zu anderen Spielen der World of Darkness. Es gibt die üblichen Attribute und Fertigkeiten, und mit den Arcanoi haben die Geister übernatürliche Fähigkeiten mit breitem Spektrum. Auch hier haben die Geister eine dunkle Seite, allerdings geht Wraith ungewöhnliche Wege, denn im Grunde teilen sich Geister in zwei Hälften: die Psyche stellt die Persönlichkeit dar und der Schatten (Shadow) bündelt alle negativen Eigenschaften. Normalerweise hat die Psyche die Oberhand, doch es kann dem Schatten gelingen, ihr diese Kontrolle zu entreißen. Leider will der Schatten nichts anderes, als den Geist vernichten – allerdings nicht durch eine einfache Selbstmordaktion, sondern durch perfidere Pläne. Tatsächlich kann der Schatten der Psyche sogar mit Bonuswürfeln aushelfen, und der Spieler muss entscheiden, ob er diesen riskanten Pakt eingeht. Die Besonderheit bei Wraith besteht darin, dass die Rolle des Schattens von einem anderen Spieler übernommen wird, so dass jeder Spieler eine Psyche und einen Schatten spielt. Damit hat die dunkle Seite eine echte Rolle im Spiel – und natürlich gibt es Regelmechanismen, wie der Schatten die Kontrolle übernehmen oder die Psyche in ein persönliches Albtraumszenario ziehen kann.

Die Jubiläumsausgabe von Wraith geht aber noch weiter und rundet das Ganze mit vielen Seiten früherem Quellenbuchmaterial zu den Gilden, Spectres, Risen (Widergängern) und den anderen Totenreichen ab und thematisiert sogar das frühere Spin-off Orpheus.

Aus meiner Sicht ist Wraith das düsterste und am schwierigsten zu spielende System der Welt der Dunkelheit, das aber sehr viele innovative Ansätze und einen spannenden Hintergrund bietet – und in der Anniversary Edition das perfekte Rundumsorglos-Paket in einem Buch bietet.

(Björn Lippold)



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Wraith: The Oblivion 20th Anniversary Edition
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Hemdal's Request
by Matthew A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/04/2019 21:24:05

This story was a lot of fun to play through... very cool to see it in print and know others can enjoy it as well!



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Werewolf: The Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition
by Marcie M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/03/2019 03:53:40

We have 2 major issues with our experience and received project. We purchased the premium color, hard back edition on 1/22, it was shipped 1/28, arrived on 2/1 in a damaged box. there was hole bigger than a golf ball on the side of the shipping box. The book binding and pages were exposed and damage was noticable. Upon opeining the package to asses the damage and the product, the top corner pages and cover (front and back) were damaged. The book cover corner art covering is peeling away from the book. We have had the book for 1 day and the binding has already broken, 1 DAY! We are book collectors and treat our books with kid gloves. A book of this size should always be swen and not glued, especially for the price paid for the product. The other major issue we have is the fact that only select sections of this book are color. The desciption of this product should be accurate and state that only part of the book is color. Honestly, the book is not worth the price you pay, you are better off to just purchase the PDF and print at your local printing store.



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Werewolf: The Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition
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