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Four Against Darkness $12.00 $8.00
Average Rating:5.0 / 5
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Four Against Darkness
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Four Against Darkness
Publisher: Ganesha Games
by Alessio S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/17/2018 16:16:29

Era il gioco che cercavo da tanto tempo! Sono appassionato del genere Fantasy rpg ma, non volendone sapere il mio gruppo di giocarlo, perlomeno con 4AD ho ritrovato la possibilità di giocare e gustare le atmosfere Old School dei bei tempi andati di D&D. Il bot del gioco, grazie all'uso ricorrente e continuo di tabelle casuali, genera sempre nuove scene, situazioni, scontri, colpi di scena che rendono ogni giocata unica. Il total party kill è sempre dietro l'angolo ma nel complesso lo si accetta perchè si vive una bella storia dall'inizio alla fine. Il gioco è supportato dall'autore Andrea Sfiligoi e da un ricco fandom presente su Facebook. Il manuale base contempla la possibilità di fare avanzare i personaggi fino al 3° livello dopodichè, se si vogliono provare sfide nuove e avvincenti, sono disponibili espansioni al regolamento con possibilità di livellare oltre il 9° livello e anche avventure pre-generate. Insomma, la giocabilità di Four Against Darkness è lunga e dà soddisfazione. A differenza di altri solo game presenti sul mercato, qui il giocatore porta avanti un gruppo di quattro personaggi scelti fra un pool disponibile sul manuale e ciascuno di loro ha le sue peculiarità di razza e di classe. Il sistema è semplice ed intuitivo ma, al tempo stesso, abbastanza profondo da contemplare molte situazioni di combattimento e di esplorazione tipiche dell'rpg fantasy. Vivamente consigliato!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Four Against Darkness
Publisher: Ganesha Games
by David E. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/01/2018 02:56:59

Whenever I'm in the mood to play an old school dungeon crawler, I mostly just keep coming back to Four Against Darkness (4AD), because it's one of the best solo engines I've ever come across for that.

It might be easy to overlook 4AD because of how simple it looks. But it's simplicity is actually its strength: Instead of taking an everything-&-the-kitchen-sink approach to solo-gaming (such as with a massive tome of many big tables or etc), it just takes a very minimalist approach. Though table-driven, its tables are small & few. Its focus seems to be more on just making sure that every small bit & piece of it & how it all fits together & works is perfect.

4AD is also so simply organized and modular, it's easy to modify it into whatever you want just by substituting your own tables where they fit into its system. It seems to be so conspicuously designed for that purpose, that it's even hard to resist tinkering with it. In that respect, its versatility & replay-value are practically endless. But I've also got a lot of mileage out of just using the tables it comes with, because they're quite elegantly done & satisfying to play with, too.

Plus 4AD comes with its own RPG system built into it. That system is likewise so simple & elegant, it makes all of the polished work that went into it look easy. But on a closer look, it's actually just one of the most seamlessly streamlined & tight, minimalist versions of old school rule mechanics I've seen. Not only is it conspicuously designed that way to keep 4AD's gameplay fast and fun despite having a solo-dungeon-crawling engine to manage in it, but it also feels faithful to traditional old-school rule mechanics and classes as if we're playing in the 1970's again. It balances those two things perfectly.

The net result is that 4AD is a pure blast to play. The proof was in the pudding as soon as I started playing it: I hadn't had so much fun playing a dungeon-crawler in decades. It just scratched that old school dungeon-crawling itch like nothing else. I couldn't put it down. It became my go-to game for several months.

In fact, I would even consider 4AD to be a good minimalist RPG system in its own right. Except it isn't designed to just run things from other OSR systems unconverted out-of-the-box, the way any other OSR-friendly minimalist RPG systems out there are designed to do. That means you will have to scale-down some of the stats on anything you import from other OSR systems into 4AD's system to make their balance OK, because most things involving stats in 4AD's system tend to be scaled smaller in it. Or considering how simple 4AD's system is to manaage, you could just run a whole other OSR system atop 4AD's solo engine if you like.

Anyway, I just love everything about 4AD. I especially recommend it for anybody into solo dungeon crawls and minimalist hacks of old school rules. But it would also be a great way to introduce younger players to dungeon-crawls, or to play GM-less dungeon-crawls with a group.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Four Against Darkness
Publisher: Ganesha Games
by Stephan B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/01/2017 17:00:36

For me, 4AD's magic is in its elegant simplicity and its tweakability.

The elegant simplicity gets and keeps the player in the game. The first few sessions will require a bit of page-flipping (and/or appropriate judgement-calling), but it nonetheless flows quickly, with neither fuss nor muss.

Tweakability: after your first couple of delves you'll be adding your own classes, creating rules for managing the party outside of the dungeon (e.g. the "party stash" and whatnot), creating your own encounter charts, and possibly even your own dungeon map generators. There's nothing in the game which hinders players in this regard, and there's enough material in the system to provide a good basis of "what's really intended to fit" within the framework.

In the long term, i suspect that 4AD will be known not so much for what it is itself, but as a catalyst which will spawn many other similar systems, each tweaked for variable levels of complexity, depth, and play styles, but ultimately having roots which lead back to this game.

One play tip: stone or aluminum tiles used for flooring and walls, preferably in the size range 2cm to 1 inch or so, can be bought cheaply in large sheets at most hardware stores and make an excellent component for this game. See this photo album for examples of 4AD play using such tiles instead of drawn-on-paper dungeons: https://goo.gl/photos/ACpGecKRRvbpx2mJ7

(Pedantic note: the backslash-escaping of quotes in this review is not from me, but is a bug in the review tool.)



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Four Against Darkness
Publisher: Ganesha Games
by Joshua O. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/13/2016 22:09:27

I've played this game with two groups of people. We split up the four characters, use dungeon tiles instead of drawing the map, and use minis and gold coins for the money. Paizo Gamemastery Item Cards for the items. It's a blast! This is the beer and pretzels dungeon crawl miniatures dice fest I've been waiting for for years. Temple of Elemental Evil was too grueling and predictable, Descent was too heavy, D&D 4e was waaay too heavy, this is just perfect. I want to try it with non-gamers. I also want to make my own versions of the character pages and the tables, and put all the important rules on a few pieces of nicely printed cardstock to make this look like a board game. Tales of Blades and Heroes is there if you want something heavier, but when a player doesn't show up, or if you're tired, if no one wants to GM, or if you just want to play a dungeon crawl board game that lets you roleplay and has fast, fun and scary combat (I love the exploding dice!) Then this is the game to play. The published adventures are great too, I've tried Caves of the Kobold King -- you'll want variation in the random tables to keep the game fresh. I would like to make up my own random tables, then trade them with other players so we have constant surprises. For 8 bucks? This game delivers $60 worth of gameplay. Just add your own toys and make it a big box game!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Four Against Darkness
Publisher: Ganesha Games
by Ovy O. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/28/2016 22:00:23

I hope I can change this review, I just wanted to come back here after my first run and simply say this game is solo-player's dream- everything you could ask for. Progressive dungeon, simple combat, wonderful details throughout. If you are solo-player this is a must have!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Four Against Darkness
Publisher: Ganesha Games
by Victor F. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/26/2016 14:32:07

Four against darkness is nice, dungeon generation solo game. Fun to play it and in the meantime you can generate template dungeon!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Four Against Darkness
Publisher: Ganesha Games
by Ian M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 06/29/2016 08:50:24

Love this game. A nice little solo dungeon crawl experience that plays quickly once you get the hang of it. The game gives you just what you want from such an experience. You get a choice of different characters, battle against several interesting minion or boss monsters, treasure, leveling up. It even saves room for story. There are chances for side quests and events that add flavor to your adventure. There are also, at this time, three prewritten adventure modules out for the system that offer their own stories, treasure, character classes and monsters to encounter. A lot of adventure here for just a few dollars. Can't recommend it, or Ganesha Games other games, enough.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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