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Best Left Buried: The Deluxe Edition [BUNDLE] $22.12 $18.97
Average Rating:5.0 / 5
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Best Left Buried: The Deluxe Edition [BUNDLE]
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Best Left Buried: The Deluxe Edition [BUNDLE]
Publisher: SoulMuppet Publishing
by Wayne R. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/12/2019 05:51:52

I bought Best Left Buried on a bit of a whim if I'm honest. I love grim, gritty and dark fantasy rpg's, but have found many of them to be rather rules heavy. So when I saw this I bought it.

Let me just say that I am very happy I did! The system is simple yet flexible (2d6 + stat vs a TN 9, then some dials that mix this up) and the archetypes evocative (Cabbalist, Cut-throat, Veteran etc). The system allows for some very varied characters in a very simple framework, and one that comes with the tools and guidelines to build your own. The same goes for for fantasy races should you wish to use them. As you would expect in a dark, grim system, magic is there, but you won't be doing Elminster type shenanigans.

Although the game does not come with a bestiary as such, it gives you a fantastic monster builder, which to date I haven't found a monster concept I couldn't replicate. Did I mention this is also very simple to do?

Where's the grim dark I hear you say? Well that comes with the Grip (Sanity, Stress etc from other games) mechanic which is used to fuel abilities, re-rolls, resisting fearsome monsters etc. When this runs out, and it will, you can take afflictions or injuries to regain it. So before long, if your little crypt digger isn't careful, he or she will be sporting a variety of either physical or mental complications. It's all very elegant, and again, simple to use.

The game comes with a ready made scenario which is also well written and enjoyable, and if it isn't your cup of tea, well just buy one of the many Zini adventures that are now available!

If I were to make one criticism, it's that at times the rules aren't always 100% clear, I think this stems from the DIY nature of the game, which is also it's charm I guess. Luckily, as the rules, well the framework they are written on, is very transparent, it's not too hard to fill in these gaps yourself with a little common sense and reflection on other parts of the system. Additionally, although there is/were some errata needed, the author has thus far been very proactive about addressing these and so far I'm happy with the response time of resolving these concerns.

So far I have run 3 sessions (with more to come) with the system and it's been very enjoyable, for both myself as a Doomsayer (GM) and my players, unless they are all lying of course!

Oh the art, I forgot to mention the art. I personally love it, it's hand drawn work which I think evokes the right atmosphere, but if you're in to highly polished triple A productions you may be disappointed.

In summary, a great game that's easy to run, plus it has lots of support coming out for Doomsayers pretty much every other week! What's to not like!

Over and out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Best Left Buried: The Deluxe Edition [BUNDLE]
Publisher: SoulMuppet Publishing
by Dominic C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/02/2019 17:48:47
A great rules-light game for creative characters and terrifying monsters.

I picked this up during a time when 5th edition just wasn't cutting it for me, and I found myself less and less interested in RPGs as a whole as the numbers and class features piled on, the party becoming effectively superheroes as every fight became a battle of how many dice worth of damage you could roll in a single turn.

I found OSR through questing beast, and one of the first games that appeared was Best Left Buried. A day long adventure and a short one-shot later, here we are.

The game is great. It allows players much more freedom in who they want to be without drowning them in character options. And yet, character creation itself is a doddle, I was able to get someone TOTALLY knew to RPGs to create 3 distinct characters within the space of maybe 10 minutes. Furthermore, the areas I usually find boring in RPGs are greatly streamlined; combat is no longer a slog of who can roll the best dice, and is now quick, hard and brutal, having the knock on effect of forcing the players to think and strategise before the fight even starts, not just when it turns ugly. It's just a really intuitive system and I can't get over how quickly players can get to grips with the system.

The game seems to encourage talking in general, many of the adventures made for this have little monsters at all. This is not a bad thing, it means that tension builds, and when combat does come the players are usually terrified, aided by the bonkers monster designs. In my case, players spent more time talking to each other in camps and conversing with the NPCs, as all confidence they had in their indestructibility was gone. Some of the more soft-design elements are also really neat, the idea of not naming your monsters and instead simply describing them for your players to name is really novel, and is a great way to get them really invested in the world.

On the side of the Doomsayer, the game is great at explaining how it is designed to work, and things like monster design are much more freeform, letting you focus on how grim the monster is over how balanced it is. I love this - I can create interesting monsters in minutes without needing to worry about it's potential balance issues too much. Even if they are strong - the nature of the game means players are likely to run either way, and a straight fight is almost never the result of a well built session.

Honestly, I'm trying to find things to criticise. While some people I've talked with think that the "playing the game" section should come before the character creation, I disagree - the way this is laid out let's people new to it create their character first, and then learn to actually play afterward. I've found a fair few spelling errors, but nothing that really obscures intent, so it's excusable. I think the game could do more to cover longer-length adventures and campaigns, at the moment it seems a little geared more toward 1-3 session long adventures. This isn't a bad thing, but I think some expansions could cover long-resting in more detail, as well as more in the way of how to handle an adventuring company, as that seems to be the best way to run this game, where the corpses pile up often.

Overall, the game is just fun to play, and really encourages the elements of RPGs I love the most, whilst simplifying the elements that can either make my planning tedious or the session itself drawn out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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