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    Stingers & Spores: Pirates of the Still Sea
    Publisher: Twitchy Butcher Studios LLC
    by Cornelius W. [Verified Purchaser]
    Date Added: 05/22/2021 16:45:01

    An adventure with an interesting premise. It's very compact and the information is presented clearly. I would've enjoyed solving the conspiracy which is - to me - the heart of the adventure, but as it is written, it pushes the players in a rather reactive role, solving everything in the aftermath with combat. I'm really looking forward to getting my hands on the full setting!



    Rating:
    [4 of 5 Stars!]
    Stingers & Spores: Pirates of the Still Sea
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    Titan Effect RPG: Outbreak
    Publisher: Knight Errant Media
    by Cornelius W. [Verified Purchaser]
    Date Added: 10/13/2020 16:57:13

    An exciting adventure that gets to the point and raises interesting questions for the group to answer without limiting the players decisions or giving the anwers itself.

    I ran this without any additional preparation as a one-shot and introduction into Titan Effect – worked perfectly.



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Titan Effect RPG: Outbreak
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    Citizens Divided
    Publisher: Aegis Studios
    by Cornelius W. [Verified Purchaser]
    Date Added: 10/13/2020 10:56:21

    I picked up Citizens Divided in search of a fast, streamlined cyberpunk setting for SWADE.

    I like the idea of the setting, which is over the top near-future cyberpunk that doesn't come with reawakened magic, elves or other stuff that I think would make it feel overloaded. What I especially appreciate is that cyberware isn't the norm for everyone just because it's cyberpunk. The setting isn't described in deep detail, but I think it mostly just gets right to the point and lets the players fill out the rest. In some places, it's a bit too sparse for my taste. I would've appreciated a few more factions, ongoing conflicts, interesting areas or other adventure hooks to get the game started or connect the players to the world.

    The graphic design of the product is good – the style of the artwork might not fit everyone's taste, but it uses evocative artwork and looks cool. It's also nice to read, both from the looks and from the structure.

    Where I think the product could be much better is the mechanics. There are a few leftovers from SWD, especially in the amount of bonuses granted by Edges and equipment. This isn't solely the author's fault, of course, since the product relies on the Science Fiction Companion which isn't out for SWADE yet. The new mandatory professional Edges feel a bit like classes and seem to be wildly unbalanced. The worst thing to me was the Sheen setting rule in which a new meta-currency is introduced. Sheen points are limited, can't be renewed, require a certain GM-style (you can't know the penalties / bonuses of your roll when you spend a Sheen point) but aren't really exciting in their usage compared to Bennies. I didn't understand their point at all.

    All things considered, Citizens Divded isn't for me. As a GM, it doesn't add anything to a game that I'd like and isn't already in the core book or the Sci-Fi Companion (which you still need to play this). As a player, the setting is too vague to excite me.

    I'm looking forward to read an updated setting book once the SWADE-SFC is out and I hope the setting will get a bit more detailed with supplements and the like!



    Rating:
    [3 of 5 Stars!]
    Citizens Divided
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    Creator Reply:
    Thanks so much for your thoughtful review! I'm glad to hear you enjoyed the look and structure of the book. I would recommend checking out the free Bad Chips and Gun Control supplements for a few adventure seeds that dip into the setting, and Election Night, which was just released and discusses a bit about the political state of the U.S.A. in 2068. As to the modifiers from equipment, I did a bit of wrenching as I updated to SWADE, and felt that the things I wanted to convey in the setting (huge Hacking bonuses for a custom deck, for example) were fitting in emphasizing the importance of tech and the right tool for the job. The way this plays out from a Hacking perspective is further elaborated on in Election Night, where you see penalties applied for the target system quality, and an example of hacker vs. hacker conflict. Regarding the mandatory Professional Edges, part of the purpose of the design is to spotlight power structures and imbalances, while encouraging cooperation. Ideal groups will include a selection of Professional Edges that compliment one another while letting each person have their specific spotlight. Of course, one can also play an entire gang of Gutter Punks, or a mobile medical unit filled with Doctors (and maybe a Chromer bodyguard), which I assume is likely a common play style. With regard to Sheen, it is really designed as a last-ditch resource (which speaks to its rarity) that you can use to get out of a sticky situation without the need to spend a Benny. You are just cool enough to get out of that scrape. I greatly appreciate the feedback and will keep it in mind as the Citizens Divided setting grows! Thank you, Travis Legge
    Burning Seas of Hell
    Publisher: GRAmel
    by Cornelius W. [Verified Purchaser]
    Date Added: 08/16/2020 09:03:02

    I read through Burning Seas of Hell and (so far) was the GM for one game with it. The review includes both my thoughts and the comments of the players.

    Burning Seas of Hell is published as a mini-setting, so it’s shorter than a „full“ setting. In comparison to the mini-settings by PEG I’ve seen so far, Burning Seas of Hell puts more detail into the various places and areas and skips Savage Tales. For me, the length of the setting was very good and it’s well structured, so I never had the feeling of having to read through a long paragraph without knowing what it’s supposed to go on about. It gives a good impression of the setting so I can start making notes right away without getting slowed down.

    The different kinds of hell’s inhabitants are varied and interesting without feeling like a kitchen-sink. I like the concept of sins that play a big role for the damned. The ability of choosing an Edge as a nightmare feels a bit weak when the High Adventure setting rule is in effect, as the setting advises.

    The concept of dealing with death when you’re already in hell is given a good thought, but I found it a bit unfair that certain kinds of PCs can just never die while others can. Also, fights can drag out quite a bit when there’s not even the possibility for someone to die – both mechanically and fictionally. The setting covers that point only with a few suggestions how to handle it in the fiction. All in all, the idea that you can’t just send someone to hell because you’re both already in there is an interesting one, but the players might need to work a bit on buying into that.

    The description of the different places in hell is really awesome. What a collection of varied, freaky and cool ideas! The way it’s written worked rather well to help me getting the mood across to the players. It includes different kinds of enemies you might meet there. It also lists factions and important NPCs that are pursuing their own goals without the setting revolving solely around them, so you’re free to ignore them without needing to rewrite parts of the setting.

    If that settings sounds interesting to you, go grab it and take a look!



    Rating:
    [4 of 5 Stars!]
    Burning Seas of Hell
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    The Kerberos Anomaly
    Publisher: Pinnacle Entertainment
    by Cornelius W. [Verified Purchaser]
    Date Added: 08/12/2020 12:41:10

    I was one of the playtesters of this adventure and received a free copy this way. Apart from that, I’m not paid or otherwise compensated for this review.

    The Kerberos Anomaly is a dynamic, flexible adventure and doesn’t come with a rigid sequence of scenes. After the intro scene (which is a playable, action-packed scene, not a paragraph to be read to the players), the players have a clear goal and the GM has a collection of NPCs, challenges and encounters to throw at them. The adventure is suitable for a one-shot.

    To help the gamemaster and keep the tension, there are random elements to decide what’s going on, e.g. a random encounter table. The encounters are described in a short, but distinct way. That works to give the GM an idea what’s going on without having to read a lot of text or skipping to different parts of the document, so you can just roll on the table and get going - no awkward pauses, hectic read-throughs or obligation to memorize everything beforehand. If the GM thinks the encounter needs to be even more dramatic, there’s the possibility to spend GM Bennies and introduce certain additional complications – good idea!

    The adventure includes five pre-generated PCs which are all interesting in itself and made in a way that everyone gets their spotlight without being one-trick ponies.

    The included maps should help visualizing the structure of a ship you’re boarding and there’s even a battlemap included if you want to use it. If you liked the game FTL: Faster Than Light, I’m sure you’ll instantly like the ship maps.

    What I also really appreciate is that the author took the time and page space to explain how certain elements of the adventure could make sense, so nothing is just suddenly there to give the players something to roll. There are also quite helpful tips for the GM to run the adventure without telling him or her what to do. Given the page count, you probably shouldn't be too surprised that it doesn't feature a complicated background story to discover. So if you're more the investigative kind of group, you might need to come up with something to investigate.

    All in all, the structure of the adventure provides plenty of opportunities to introduce both action-packed and calm scenes. I presume GMs used to adventures with paragraphs to read out loud and a set order or scenes to play through might have some trouble with this adventure, but since it says sandbox adventure in the description, you can’t really blame it for that.

    I happily recommend it to play it yourself!



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    The Kerberos Anomaly
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    Shadowcraft
    Publisher: Pinnacle Entertainment
    by Cornelius W. [Verified Purchaser]
    Date Added: 08/09/2020 04:55:54

    Shadowcraft is an interesting collection of arcane and weird options for stealthy characters. The new Arcane Background also comes with new Powers which gives it a nice twist in comparison to just giving Powers from the core book a nice trapping while they're still balanced.

    The table with name suggestions for core Powers, allowed modifiers and ideas for trappings is really neat – good ideas, clear and precise.

    Apart from the Powers, there are Weird Edges which (mostly) build on the Assassin Edge and do not require an Arcane Background. Althought I wondered about this at first, it's a good idea to enhance shady characters without forcing them to go a more magical route which might feel like mechanical baggage for some character concepts.

    I also have to praise the layout and graphic design of the product. It's clear to read while still looking interesting and giving some shadowy vibes. I really like that!



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Shadowcraft
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    Creator Reply:
    Thanks for the review and rating! I'm super happy you enjoy this product. I had a lot of fun putting this together and I'm glad that other people are getting use out of it.
    Dungeon Delver's Toolkit
    Publisher: Pinnacle Entertainment
    by Cornelius W. [Verified Purchaser]
    Date Added: 07/20/2020 05:30:36

    Although it’s aimed at recreating old school dungeon vibes, I enjoyed this toolkit without particularly missing any older systems. It brings a good rhythm into exploring dungeons and similar areas, although you should be aware that it changes the severity of Wounds as written in the Savage Worlds Core Rules.

    Additionally, it offers setting rules for combat and magic. I can see the combat setting rules work in a lot of settings way beyond dungeon delving. The setting rules for magic are a good idea for adding flavour to the Arcane Backgrounds in your fantasy game.

    If you’re into dungeon exploring with Savage Worlds in any setting, this add-on is definitely worth a read!



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Dungeon Delver's Toolkit
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    Creator Reply:
    Thank you very much for the kind words. I truly hope you use and enjoy the product.
    Dragon and Raven
    Publisher: Pinnacle Entertainment
    by Cornelius W. [Verified Purchaser]
    Date Added: 07/20/2020 04:03:20

    Dragon and Raven is a wacky gonzo-adventure suitable for a one-shot.

    The pre-generated player characters have an interesting variety and Hindrances that are referred to in the adventure in an engaging way. The hook for the PCs is easy enough and makes sense, but doesn't actually force them into a particular path.

    With two big issues to deal with and only one clearly stated to the PCs right at the start, the adventure doesn't feel too obvious at all. Since it isn't designed to have a rigid sequence of scenes or encounters and even throws a few random tables on top of that, the adventure is quite flexible and can be run multiple times without feeling too similar – even if the PCs start out with the same approach every time.

    You have to like the style of humour, of course, but I didn't find that very hard. I didn't stumble over things that are just weird for the sake of being weird. Actually, I was surprised that all the weird happenenings have understandable reasons and motives behind them. I think you can run most of the adventure with a straight face if you really want that. The maps and assets certainly help to convey the mood and if you're running with maps and tokens, they are very useful.

    We enjoyed our stay in Vapoór a lot and I will happily run this adventure again.



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Dragon and Raven
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    Herbal Alchemy
    Publisher: Pinnacle Entertainment
    by Cornelius W. [Verified Purchaser]
    Date Added: 06/13/2020 13:00:58

    A short and fast set of alternative to going the full Weird Science + Artificer route for low-powered alchemy. You could even put both in your setting for different kinds of alchemy. I tried it and liked the results. Jenn and Kristian understand Savage Worlds quite well and it shows once more with this supplement.



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Herbal Alchemy
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    Creator Reply:
    Thank you, Cornelius! We are very grateful and appreciative of your praise for Herbal Alchemy. We hope our future products continue to be as well received as this was.
    Instant Encounters
    Publisher: Pinnacle Entertainment
    by Cornelius W. [Verified Purchaser]
    Date Added: 06/07/2020 09:55:08

    For quickly putting together a dungeon crawl adventure or scene, this product offers a card draw mechanic that is easy to use but produces a wide variety of interesting results. The way that it breaks down dungeons into different types is pretty clever: It gives you a table per type and with that different results for the cards, making it still generic enough to be adapted to your specific adventure but specific enough to be interesting and make sense in your setting. Instant Encounters doesn't include a bestiary or something similar so you need to look elsewhere for the actual stats. No rating penalty for this since that'd be way out of the scope of such a small product and you probably already got a bestiary with the setting you're playing anyway.



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Instant Encounters
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    Wand Magic
    Publisher: Pinnacle Entertainment
    by Cornelius W. [Verified Purchaser]
    Date Added: 05/05/2020 09:31:00

    A fine setting nugget that saves me quite a bit of work for various adaptions. The mechanics for wand attunement convey picky wands very well without being complicated. The Power Edges are well-thought-out and have interesting interactions among each other as well as with parts of the core rules. I'm especially delighted by the way the Power Modifers from the Savage Worlds Adventure Edition are woven into the mechanics. The layout is fine as well. Great product!



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Wand Magic
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    Artificer's Codex
    Publisher: Pinnacle Entertainment
    by Cornelius W. [Verified Purchaser]
    Date Added: 06/26/2019 18:22:33

    In just two pages, Kristian and Jenn present all the mechanics you need for creating higher artifacts. It's all clearly worded, well-written, balanced and gives tips to adapt it to different kind of settings. If you want mechanics for creating mightier magic items than the Artificer in the core rules allows - e.g. because you don't want to burden the GM with coming up with all the requirements, costs and everything else - this is for you!



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Artificer's Codex
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    Distant Journeys
    Publisher: Pinnacle Entertainment
    by Cornelius W. [Verified Purchaser]
    Date Added: 04/08/2019 06:00:16

    This travel supplement is well written and contains everything I need to make overland travel interesting and give players the opportunity to play a part without bogging down the journeys with lots of rolls or arbitrary random encounters. It fits neatly into the subystems of the Savage Worlds Adventure Edition.



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Distant Journeys
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    The Widening Gyre: A Savage Steampunk Setting
    Publisher: High Rock Press
    by Cornelius W. [Verified Purchaser]
    Date Added: 09/02/2018 15:59:33

    This is a pretty huge book – it doesn't just deliver one complete setting (even with a Plot Point Campaign), it's also a sourcebook for all sorts of Steampunk or Victorian games, be it with magic, aliens, werewolves, clockwork-men, all of it or none of that. I don't know of a single setting (or supplement) that includes so many options and tips on how to run different types of that settings, what novels to read or what movies to watch for more ideas. However, there were a few things missing for my purposes, which is why I can't give it 5/5: The rules and rulings are often a bit loose, so for defined mechanics, I still had to make something up myself (or look into other settings). A few specific setting rules or mechanics would have been nice. The book brings stats for fantastical devices, but doesn't contain prices and stats for everyday stuff like the price of a cab ride or the speed of a steamer. Nonetheless, the Widening Gyre is a great addition to your Steampunk game, even if it might not provide everything you might need.



    Rating:
    [4 of 5 Stars!]
    The Widening Gyre: A Savage Steampunk Setting
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    Banes
    Publisher: Sergeant Nerd Games
    by Cornelius W. [Verified Purchaser]
    Date Added: 09/02/2018 14:12:12

    I bought this RPG supplement for a Savage Worlds game. It has a nice variety of weaknesses, a bunch of different ways to apply them – way beyond "takes double damage" – and hints to find them out. There are also tips for the GM to handle the research scenes which I found well-written and helpful. It works very well with Savage Worlds and doesn't need to include any new mechanics or subsystems. We immediately had a lot of fun with the first session where we used a bigger enemy with a certain weakness. If you want to spice up the monsters in you game, go ahead and buy it!



    Rating:
    [5 of 5 Stars!]
    Banes
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