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    Changeling: The Dreaming 20th Anniversary Edition
    by Randy A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/06/2021 01:54:29

    Of the 5 main classic World of Darkness games, Changeling: the Dreaming was always my least favorite. This edition actually makes it #2 (after Mage 20th). It's fixed so much! The balance, mechanics, world description, and kiths are all so much tidier and well-explained.



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Changeling: The Dreaming 20th Anniversary Edition
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    Let the Streets Run Red (Vampire: the Masquerade 5th Edition)
    by Alexandre S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/29/2021 08:48:55

    The book is bland and uninspiring. Even the revisiting stuff feels like a mandate.



    Rating:
    [1 of 5 Stars!]
    Let the Streets Run Red (Vampire: the Masquerade 5th Edition)
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    Cults of the Blood Gods (Vampire: the Masquerade 5th Edition)
    by Alexandre S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/29/2021 08:47:17

    Not a bad book, but it didn't have the "wow" of the old WW books. It is just that desing decisions are so.. visible, and there is not a desire to create a world, but simply to create a game supplement.



    Rating:
    [2 of 5 Stars!]
    Cults of the Blood Gods (Vampire: the Masquerade 5th Edition)
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    Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition
    by Tai J. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/27/2021 07:39:27

    The book is phenomenal.

    It is actually a tome, hardback, solid, well bound, the artwork is absolutely stunning and for the price it's amazing. I am in love with this book, and am so glad that I got it.

    On receiving this masterpiece, I am off now to buy the Tarot Deck.



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition
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    Troubadors & Tenders of the Grove, Pugilists & Pact Makers
    by Alain G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/16/2021 13:58:36

    This product is good, but it misses just a few marks to become great. My main concern is that the wording could be much improved to better match 5e conventions. Most of these ideas are interesting and fit really well in the Scarred Lands (a druid that can summon a herd of street cats, yes!) but an editing pass is much needed. Balance is also sometimes questionable as well. As for the previous book by the same authors, the layout switches back and forth between one and two columns, which feels rather odd.

    Some common editing mistakes I found are :

    • use of "CON", "CHA", etc instead of "Constitution", "Charisma", etc; HP instead of hit points, etc
    • lot of words starting with Capital letters when they shouldn't (Advantage, Disadvantage, Attack of Opportunity),
    • words sometimes missing in a sentence,
    • some features not mentioning at which level they are gained,
    • spell names not in italic
    • some effects missing (notably, the base effect of the defensive state for the Call of the Stray)
    • inconsistent interline (makes reading really awkward, I know that you want everything to fit on a single page but still...)
    • the DC for the Pounce ability is not 5e-like
    • some effects don't specify what type of actions are required to activate them
    • some translation issues ? "reflexive action" instead of "reaction"
    • some abilities using "time per day" instead of using a long rest mechanics
    • some copy-paste errors ("mother of dragons" instead of "the Null")
    • use of "the player" instead of "you"
    • use of "Reflex" saving throw from 3.X era
    • a list of spells would have been useful

    By the way, the defensive state for the Call of the Stray effect is perhaps the most overpowered (it can grant a +12 bonus to AC, which is way tooooo much) and I would definitively nerf it at my table. (That's not the only balance issue I found tbh)

    Also, it is not clear whether the Forgotten Necrotic King refer to Ahrmuzda Airat (which should be known by any historian familiar with Hollowfaut history) or if the authors imply another entity?

    Again, there are lot of good and great ideas in this book, and it would be a 5-star product for me if it were a bit more polished.



    Rating:
    [4 of 5 Stars!]
    Troubadors & Tenders of the Grove, Pugilists & Pact Makers
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    Trinity Continuum Core Rulebook
    by michael s. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/15/2021 13:45:00

    Sh? She? She? Low expectations for this one but high hope. Such a great idea and loved the orginal but its just so overly complicated



    Rating:
    [4 of 5 Stars!]
    Trinity Continuum Core Rulebook
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    Exalted 3rd Edition
    by Daniel D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/15/2021 08:20:00

    First, let me say that the Exalted setting is beautifully written. The worldbuilding is novel, fascinating, and well thought out, with a wonderful amount of attention paid to the implications of even minor setting details. The characterization is solid, and the potential plots are limitless. Considered as a work of fiction, this book is a masterpiece.

    Unfortunately, considered as a game system, this system is almost literally unplayable. The combat system is built around a division between "withering" and "decisive" attacks that is both horrifically clunky and constantly pulls you out of the gaming experience to engage with a dissociated mechanical abstraction. The arbitrary "crafting XP" system makes crafting feel like a video-game grind rather than like being a master craftsman, and the use of Lore as a skill to rewrite the setting rather than to obtain information undermines any attempt to create the illusion of a internally consistent reality. The XP system fails to use the full advantages of an XP system, with XP primarily being handed out for completing sessions rather than any in-game accomplishment and with little to no provision for the GM to use XP to reward player success. The Attribute+Ability system is confusing, with several things being made Abilities that really should be passive effects and an Attribute system that is hard to follow.

    This is all the more frustrating because Onyx Path had no need to use such atrocious mechanics. If they had simply built the EX3 game to run on the same combat engine, Ability+Skill system, Beat/XP mechanics, etc. that they already use for their Chronicles of Darkness system, this would be easily a 4-star product, possibly 5.

    Though I will note one last caveat: I was very impressed with EX3's social influence system. The idea of teired Intimacies and the way they interact with social influence is one of the better ways I have seen of building a defined social influence system that gives social characters power without being horrifically broken, and this is one area where EX3's rules are better than those of the CoD system.

    I hold out hope for a conversion of this setting to a more playable system, but I can confidently state that I will never play or run a game using these rules.



    Rating:
    [2 of 5 Stars!]
    Exalted 3rd Edition
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    Time is Come Round: The Contagion Chronicle Jumpstart
    by André B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/07/2021 12:02:42

    Nice story and development... Good puzzles. Excellent for new players... BUT... I can point some things that annoyed me:

    1- At some poits have page link unfinished (p. XX)

    2- Could describe the merits at characteres page

    3- I missed a scratch of Deimos Energy Solutions plant with some interesting points

    4- Bans and Banes Effects

    And for Gods sake.... Translate your materials to Portuguese. We have a HUGE base @Brazil and we are still playing V:TM 3rd Edition just because we dont have material in our language.



    Rating:
    [4 of 5 Stars!]
    Time is Come Round: The Contagion Chronicle Jumpstart
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    Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition
    by Paweł M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/06/2021 13:48:05

    Absolutely one of my all-time favorites. Huge amount of information in really nice looking book.



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition
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    Scion: Frost Giant Butt Warriors
    by Lilith G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/30/2021 13:18:30

    Hemmingway, Shakespeare, Stoker, Tolkein, and Martin

    All hacks in comparison to the literary genius found within this tome. Frost Giant Butt Warriors is a literary masterpiece, unlike any I have ever seen before. Combining a compelling, and often times awe-inspiring, combination of world building, character development, internalized struggle, and description within such a short book that I was left in absolute awe for hours to come. The author manages to keep you on the edge of your seat, wondering what will happen next the whole time as you are left worried yet interested in the future of this piece.

    I would not merely reccomend this for its techincal and literary merits though, make no mistake, as this is also the single best RPG supplement I have ever had the pleasure to find, and was surprised at its cost. A supplement such as this is a must have for any fan of Scion wanting to expand their view of The World, as it presents a side of it we have never seen before. Not a mere exploration of the Myths and Legends we find in The World, this book shows us the human nature as well and what it is to truely live in a world based off mythology.

    My only complaint would be this is a single story series, as this truly had the maings of being one the biggest additions to the RPG world since the invention of 7 dice sets. I can only hope that the coming Scion Anthology decides to look toward this great for its inspiration, and seek to not only live up to its legacy but surpass it.

    6/5 stars, a must read.



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Scion: Frost Giant Butt Warriors
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    Mummy: The Curse Second Edition
    by Lilith G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/29/2021 14:31:46

    An amazing addition to your Chronicles collection, and something I look forward to running with earnest. Mummy is not just a game of curses and revenge, as you might expect from a more Universal Pictures view of the monster, but of lost identity and a struggle between maintaining one's self and the ideas of who they are.

    Whether you plan on running a short or long game, Mummy's lore and mechanics can support your vision. If you get tired of your current setting, you can completely change it up and use the exact same characters with no problem. I don't think I've played any game which gives the freedom, both mechanically and lore wise, to play with your players as an ST in a long while.



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Mummy: The Curse Second Edition
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    Vampire: The Requiem 2nd Edition
    by Dillon R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/26/2021 02:15:58

    I purchased the premium, hardcover print. What i got, was flimsy paper and washed colors.

    the only color that isnt muted is black and i honestly feel like i might tear the page when i turn it. I honestly hope they sent me the standard copy by mistake.

    The game is great.



    Rating:
    [1 of 5 Stars!]
    Vampire: The Requiem 2nd Edition
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    Werewolf: the Forsaken 2nd Edition
    by Oisin M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/21/2021 01:20:04

    I bought both the PDF and Premium Hardcover. I'll mostly be talking about the content, so I'll say a quick word on the hardcover. The art is a little sparse but the premium hardcover is worthwhile since it has much thicker paper than other standard quality print-on-demand titles I've purchased. Thicker paper makes the book much more durable as you're passing it around at the table - which happens a lot, even though my group has multiple copies.

    Since picking this up, Werewolf: the Forsaken Second Edition has become my favourite RPG bar none. I read Werewolf: the Forsaken First Edition, but never played it as I had trouble grasping what the game was supposed to be about. Second edition fixes that. This book constantly emphasises the core themes of the game; the Pack, the Territory, the Hunt. You are a Werewolf and The Wolf Must Hunt.

    The game wonderfully ties its themes into the core mechanics. For Werewolves, the Hunt, the Pack, and the Territory are all real mechanical things that your powers interact with. These core ideas are incredibly effective at drawing you in and getting you invested in the game. You will want to protect your Territory because it's your territory. You will look out for your Pack for the same reason. And when you go on the Hunt for some Spirit who didn't get the memo about keeping in his lane, the game offers up a whole host of abilities that make you feel like a badass apex predator.

    One of the things this game excels at is getting you into a very non-human mindset. The game tells you repeatedly that your character is an apex predator and the mechanics back that up. All Werewolves have access to the killing form - Gauru - and even the most timid and bookish character becomes an unstoppable rage monster in Gauru form. During play, your character is keeping a lid on their rage, and as a player you have to constantly resist the urge to change into Gauru form and murder everything in your way.

    Werewolves are not humans, and unlike Vampire where maintaining your Humanity is one of the main themes of the game, Werewolves make no pretense of maintaining their humanity. Instead they have dual nature as humans and wolves, flesh and spirit, that they need to keep in balance - represented by Harmony. Unlike Humanity where higher is better and zero means your character is no longer playable, the goal in Werewolf is to reach and maintain a Harmony score of 5. If your Harmony gets too high or low you'll have trouble controlling your character's shapeshifting, and be more prone to lose control of your rage at an inopportune moment. However there's no point at which your character becomes totally unplayable.

    The setting is split between the physical world, and the Shadow which is inhabited by animistic spirits. Werewolves are creatures of both flesh and spirit, and generally you'll want to keep both sides of your territory in order. Much of the day-to-day conflict comes from balancing what's good for the humans on the physical side of your territory with what the spirit courts need and want. You can mistreat both and throw your weight around, but a mob with torches and pitchforks or the spirit equivalent will drive out your pack fairly quickly.

    To keep things simple the key elements of the setting are presented in the form of short stories that Werewolves tell each other about who they are, and where they come from. For players it's easy to get up to speed on what your character knows and believes, but if you are planning on running this game you'll probably need to read the setting chapter a couple of times to get the full picture. You don't need any other books to run this game, but picking up the supplements The Pack and Night Horrors: Shunned by the Moon will give you a more complete picture on how to handle the characters' allies and prey respectively.

    One drawback some in my group found is that the game has a fictional language called First Tongue, and switches between First Tongue and English terms throughout the book. Personally I find that using First Tongue terms like the Hisil, instead of the Shadow, or referring to characters by their auspice renown names like Rahu or Cahalith helps to stay immersed, and First Tongue terms are always in italics when they do show up, but if it's giving you trouble there's a complete lexicon on page 76/77 that you can bookmark or print out.

    Character creation is about as complex as in other Chronicles of Darkness lines - you first create a mortal character and then add the Werewolf template. Werewolves get a lot of abilities at character creation compared to some others - they can shapechange into five different forms (including Human), and will typically start out with a plethora of Gifts, Rites, and other miscellaneous abilities. Werewolves have access to one of the widest toolsets at character creation of any Chronicles of Darkness game, but a drawback of this is that there are a lot of abilities that are easy to overlook as a new player. I found this was not a big issue as things like Hunter's Aspect are highly situational and so it doesn't matter if players focus on other abilities early on. When you become familiar with the game and the system, the wide array of tools is extremely welcome and being able to sidestep certain kinds of problems on the Hunt entirely through a Gift, Rite, or simply due to the innate abilities all Werewolves possess is very satisfying and helps to hammer home that feeling of being the ultimate predator.

    One of the downsides of this book is that it could have used more material focused towards the Storyteller. The Storytelling chapter is good, but many Storytellers will come away feeling unequipped to portray the Shadow based solely on the material in this book, and the chapter on foes is woefully short on details for how foes like the Pure work. If you are planning on running the game I highly recommend picking up the Night Horrors supplement as it will give you the information needed to portray The Pure and a whole host of other foes for the player characters to deal with.

    The layout can also be confusing to new players. If you're familiar with any of the other Chronicles of Darkness Second Edition books this one is laid out in the same way. During play you'll mostly be using chapter 3 - which details character creation and Werewolf abilities, and chapter 4 which covers the core rules systems. Navigating the PDF is fairly easy due to the plethora of bookmarks, but it can be harder to find information in the physical book.

    Those issues aside, this is an incredible game and an absolute blast to play. I would write more, but you should try it out for yourself! Urum Da Takus - The Wolf Must Hunt



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Werewolf: the Forsaken 2nd Edition
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    Cults of the Blood Gods (Vampire: the Masquerade 5th Edition)
    by Neill H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/15/2021 03:16:43

    A phenomenal book which has a surprisingly broad range of topics, all covered in surprising depth. Each of the individual cults are evocatively written up, but also presented with clear guidance of how to involve them in a game as a Storyteller, or how to play as a cult member as a player. These aren't just one-note religious cults which one would think is a neat concept, but with no way to use them, either - each of them are interesting, different from one another and nicely explores a Kindred theme. On top of these, which would be enough on its own, the chapter on the Hecata is glorious, prompting me to write up a character there and then without any relevant game in sight, and despite my lack of pre-existing feeling towards the Giovanni or any other other necromantic Clans. I can't recommend this book highly enough, and whilst I'd say that Chicago By Night is a more critical "must-have" for V5, especially for anyone new to VTM in general, this may actually be a better book overall, making it the best of V5 so far.



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Cults of the Blood Gods (Vampire: the Masquerade 5th Edition)
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    Titanomachy (A Collection of Threats for Scion Second Edition)
    by John S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/14/2021 14:11:50

    Finally, a book that presents an option to play a Scion who doesn't concern themselves with how their actions affect those around them! That isn't to say that your character is objectively evil, but other characters may start to find that your sociopathic narcissism and singleminded pursuit of achieving your goals makes you difficult to tolerate for long periods of time.

    The Titans are, to put it bluntly, not content with the current state of the World, and wish to impose some manner of change to the way things are. As one of their Scions, you presumably share their sentiments, although you may not necessarily share the same vision of what changes need to be implemented. While the Gods and their champions fight to preserve the status quo and maintain the world as it currently is, the Titans and their ilk are fighting to alter it on a fundamental level.

    Other Titans, however, choose to take on a more apathetic stance on the war between them and the Gods. The suffering of mortals and the World at large doesn't concern them, but they lack the sadism necessary to actively contribute to the misery. Titans such as these may be able to form some sort of truce with the Gods, however tenuous it might be.

    Unfortunately, I feel like the book didn't go quite as in depth as it could have been. Titanomachy introduces 5 new Callings for your character (Destroyer, Adversarry, Primordial, Tyrant and Monster), but doesn't introduce any new supernatural origins for your character options. It's a book about playing as the Scion of an ancient power that predates the Gods. You'd think they would have been able to throw in some new supernatural creatures to play as?

    At the very least, they could have added a Giant origin, given how closely integrated they are with Norse mythology, and the prophecy of Ragnarok.

    The book also isn't scaled to power for the (as of yet) upcoming release of 2nd edition Demigod; which brings up the question of whether or not there will be more Titanomachy books in the future to support the escalation of power, or if they're going to leave that up to the Story Tellers and Players to hash out on their own?

    The Titans introduced in this book are pretty cool, such as Echidna (always happy to see a mother of monsters figure), and even Cronus has decided to make an appearance. So if you want to make a Scion who is siblings with Hades, Poseidon and Zeus, then go nuts with it! We also have a newly resurrected Ymir and Balor joining the fight against the Gods and their ilk.

    All in all, I would recommend this book for anybody who's interested in playing a character who is primarily focused on achieving their own personal goals, without concern for how it affects those around them.

    But the fact that it mostly just updates the already existing content, rather than expand upon it is what lowers its overall score for me. I give it an average 3 out of 5. It's not super great, but I still consider it a good addition to the library.



    Rating:
    [3 of 5 Stars!]
    Titanomachy (A Collection of Threats for Scion Second Edition)
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