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    Noir $4.99
    Average Rating:5.0 / 5
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    Publisher: Of Diced Up Men
    by Megan R. [Featured Reviewer]
    Date Added: 11/23/2013 11:45:49

    If you enjoy 'film noir' or hard-boiled 1930s detective stories or Damon Runyon tales this simple and elegant - yet powerful - game may be right up your street.

    Character generation is simple. Roll 2d6+3 to get a number of points which you can assign to core traits covering brawling, gunplay, fast talk, finding things, figuring stuff out and following people - each of these can range from 1 (hopeless) to 6 (acknowledge master of the art). A couple of advanced traits (used to influence game mechanics) and a few foibles for your character and you're just about done.

    Now comes the clever bit. The game mechanics are based on the game of craps... popular as a gambling game at the time, and evocative of the period. It is explained clearly for those of you who don't play craps, along with the probabilities for those not mathematical enough to work them out. Roll a 7 or an 11 on two d6s, and you have succeeded at what you are trying to do. Roll 2, 3 or 12 and you have failed... anything else is a partial success or 'point.'

    If you get a 'point' roll again - the aim is to get the same number as you did in the first roll before you roll a 7 (in which case you fail). You can use an appropriate trait value to add or subtract from the roll to get the result you want. The rest is up to player and GM to determine or describe. There are some clear examples to show you how this works - and a few ideas for the GM (called a Narrator) to use when characters fail - called 'crapping out' of course.

    Characters can get hurt but they are almost immortal, no worrying about trivial details like how many hit points you have. This game is all about the story not the details and should be played as such. All the suggestions made in the Narrator's Bag of Tricks section are designed to enhance this, placing the characters and their story square in the centre of proceedings.

    There is also a section on Building Stories which gives an impressive selection of characteristic film noir tropes that you can build into your story. There's also some suggestions for films to watch for inspiration and a substantial list of period slang. Me, I'm reaching for Damon Runyon stories and of course the Philip Marlowe stories of Raymond Chandler. My players watch films but rarely read books!

    [5 of 5 Stars!]
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