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Star Trek Adventures: Core Rulebook
Publisher: Modiphius
by Brian D. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/27/2019 13:35:52

The top thing I can say about this one is that it captures a specifically Star Trek feeling perfectly (the original series/movies, that is, and not the reboot movies, thankfully). Exploration, discovery, personal values, and so forth are stressed over combat (although it does feature a solid if slightly streamlined combat system with the more complex starship combat rules being particularly enjoyable). I've seen the 2d20 system used for a couple of other properties now and I like how they tailor it for the various settings in ways that are meant to capture the proper feeling each time. In the case of Star Trek Adventures, they've done an excellent job with that cusomization.

The 2d20 system is simple to teach - perhaps 5-10 minuites for everything a player really needs to know to get started, with the rest naturally folding in during play. Even with the tweaks mentioned above, if somebody is famliiar with one of the other incarnations of 2d20, they'll have no problem at all merely diving right in with this one. It isn't particularly "rules light"; merely conhesive and logical in that way that allows one to easily fill in the blanks for any specific rule or system without having to stop and hit the rulebook in the middle of a play session. Players are given a lot of agency here - for example, being able to up the GM's ability to throw curveballs at them in exchange for benefits in the moment. That level of agency makes an easy-to-comprehend system particularly important, as it means the players need a somewhat higher understanding of the system so that they also have a grasp on the consequences of their decisions.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Star Trek Adventures: Core Rulebook
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Robotech: A Macross Saga RPG (SWAdE)
Publisher: Battlefield Press
by Brian D. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/09/2019 16:33:03

Top-notch adaptation of the property that does a marvelous job of capturing an authentic feeling of the source material. The artwork is new, not the original animation cels or the like, but I suspect that would have proven difficult to pull off properly and likely to become rights-encumbered if not already so. The feel and general aesthetics of the new art are right on point, however, and I'm just as happy with it as I would be with images lifted from the animation. The presentation is also excellent, with a clear and easily digested layout. The PDF includes bookmarks but one flaw is the absence of an index, which is less important for the PDF but I'm sure would be much appreciated in the physical version (when it arrives).

Savage Worlds seems a good fit for the setting to me and quite capable of handling both human scale (micronian scale?) and mecha-sized combat. Given the nature of the battles in Macross, the inclusion of a set of mass combat rules is a definite plus, as is a card-based (very suitable for SW) random mission generator. As a gear-head, I was also very pleased to see that not only are all the major vehicles and mecha represented but even those which saw just a few seconds of screentime are detailed out. I may be incorrect in this, but I believe some of the content are things I personally have only seen before as concept art from the development of the original show.

(On a complete side-note, as somebody who spent a fair amount of time playing the original RPG adaptation, I am very pleased to see the authors of this version have used the original names for various vehicles such as the Destroids instead of the seemingly randomized versions used in that other RPG, but I'm going to have to do some mental reprogramming before I get the names lined up as they actually should be.)

The book is rounded off with nicely detailed timelines and overviews of the general history leading up to this point in the storyline. As might be expected, the major characters are also given complete bios and statistical write-ups.

All in all, I am extremely pleased and highly recommend this to any fans of the show or, in fact, mecha-based anime in general. It was obviously created with a great deal of knowledge and respect for its source material. My only issue now is needing to be patient for (hopefully) the release of books detailing the other chapters of the saga.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Robotech: A Macross Saga RPG (SWAdE)
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