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Delta Green: Impossible Landscapes
by Eric M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/28/2021 10:18:26

Different types of horror can evoke different emotions - discomfort, disgust, fear, dread, despair. Personally, that's why I love the genre: it gives one a place to safely experience and, yes, even enjoy these emotions. But my favourite type of horror is the kind that bends reality about five degrees to the left, leaving you feeling uncertain about the world you're inhabiting and your place in it. It's not exactly scary, per se - but along with a feeling of wonder, it also gives you a deep-seated dread that reaches down into the pit of your stomach. It's the feeling you experience when you have deja vu, or when you turn a corner in your hometown and suddenly there's a new store where there was once an empty lot. That gut feeling that there is some hidden secret or truth to the world and, if only for a moment, if you try hard enough, you can get a glimpse behind the curtain. The momentary conviction that somehow, something is just wrong.

And like a frog in a pot of lukewarm water that is turned up to boiling so slowly that by the time it notices, it's too late, Impossible Landscapes begins with a gentle dip into the surreal. Moment by moment, the surreality grows, almost unnoticeably. But for your players - and perhaps for you, dear Handler - this campaign inexorably slides into an unstoppable plunge, where only by luck and force of will can one rise to catch their breath, before they are pulled down, beneath the cloud lake, to the hidden city of Carcosa where all secrets are laid bare.

It's no exaggeration to say that I've been waiting for this campaign to come to fruition for many years. Since first playing the original Night Floors campaign perhaps five years ago, I've been enamoured by this aspect of the Cthulhu Mythos. The King in Yellow is a mystery that leaves you hungry for more but uncertain where to look - or even what the mystery is. The original Chambers' stories are but an amuse-bouche, a stage setting for all that was to come. And if contemporary stories like True Detective were the appetizers, Impossible Landscapes is the main course. You will eat the entire meal, and only then will you understand the true secret: That the meal is you and you are the meal. Consume, and be consumed.

While the original Night Floors was atmospheric and reality-bending - and in fact was one of my favourites - it always felt it somewhat unfinished, with no satisfying conclusion. And because the Agents never saw the full behind-the-scenes picture of the operation, they were inevitably left feeling a bit confused. Thankfully, Impossible Landscapes slots Night Floors neatly in place as the opening act to a much larger campaign, and even if you've run Night Floors before for your Agents, by running it again you'll find an expanded story, new clues and horrors for your Agents, and - perhaps most crucially - new meaning behind what already existed in the campaign.

Moving on to the second stage of the campaign, A Volume of Secret Faces, you'll find an operation for your Agents that is both wide and deep. In some campaigns or operations, a lot of the peripheral details are left for the Handler to flesh out. Happily, such is not the case here - especially because some of those fringe details will turn out to be some of the most goosebump-raising, spine-tingling moments for your Agents. This campaign is both linear and nonlinear; you'll see what I mean upon reading it. As a result, it will require some flexibility and on-the-spot improvisation by the Handler to adapt to your players' choices, as well as a deep and thorough knowledge of the campaign (DEFINITELY re-read it at least two or three times before running a game); but such GM-gymnastics will be well rewarded when your players have that "aha!" moment that we all live for as Handlers.

In the third stage of the campaign, Like a Map Made of Skin, the action rises and things go all-out surreal. I really enjoy when a Delta Green operation has a good mix of unnatural horror and the "mundane" terror of mortal combat, and this section of the campaign leans on that mix very hard to push your players forward. This section is the shortest of the four parts of the campaign, and - if you so desire it, though it's not by any means necessary - would be best served by Handlers who like to expand on the campaign material with their own side-quests, maps, etc. But since this part of the campaign sort of becomes a bit of a rest stop for the players, you may wish to play it as-is so that they can continue in good time to the climax, in part four.

In my own, original run of the Night Floors operation years ago, I built a climax very similar to what ends up comprising the end of this book. That my own creation turned out to be similar was satisfying indeed, but in this section, The End of the World of the End, the details build out a world that feels both real and unknowable. And the underlying corruption mechanics that have both hindered and guided the Agents this far will lead to a different personal revelation, ending, or understanding for each of them.

The layout and graphics of the book lend it an air of mystery, as if the campaign book itself has come under the corrupting influence of the King in Yellow. It's almost a pity that your players won't get to see it, because it provides a lot of dressing for the horror of the words written within. The handouts are exhaustive and detailed, including maps, clues of all sorts, NPC portraits that feel like real people, and all sorts of things to confound and illuminate your players. The organization of the campaign is particularly satisfying; it is a very long book at more than 350 pages, and very dense, so as mentioned it does require re-reading to really understand all the details. But reading it, I never felt lost or confused about what was happening or where. It's a very easy campaign for a Handler to follow, as long as they read it enough to absorb everything, like a poison you must take in through the skin.

The way that Agent corruption is built or reduced via the game mechanics throughout the campaign is both subtle and, at the same time, a critical part of what makes this campaign work so well. Instead of being a Handler "inflicting" weird things on the Agents (who, in the original Night Floors, had very little personal agency as a result), the Agents' own actions and decisions guide what they see, hear, and experience. They decide how strong the pull of Carcosa is on them - do they dare turn another page and continue on to that cursed, beautiful, horrible Act II, Scene I?

I think you will find that they cannot resist. And so you, dear Handler, are given the pleasure of watching as they seal their own doom and proceed down that dark corridor searching for answers - just a little farther, a little farther - until the darkness envelopes them.

Now, unmask.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Delta Green: Impossible Landscapes
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Delta Green: Impossible Landscapes
by Euan G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/28/2021 08:23:36

An incredible piece of writing with a countless number of chilling sections. All I could have wanted and more for running a King in Yellow campaign. Arc Dream should be proud of the work they have produced. Also... Have you seen the Yellow Sign?



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Delta Green: Impossible Landscapes
by Enrique E. C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/28/2021 04:34:52

Elegant, nuanced, surreal, detailed. Maddening.

Impossible Landscapes is a sourcebook and a campaing that your players will never forget nor forgive. Pure horror in an insidious form that will never be undestood nor defeated. Good hunt, but you're doomed. Have you seen the Yellow Sign?



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Delta Green: Impossible Landscapes
by Trung B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/28/2021 00:02:17

Years in the making Impossible Landscapes is a culmination of the creators of Delta Green and how in-depth, complex, and maddening the setting is truly capable of. Rather than be faced with a "tangible" and physical threat, Agents are faced with surreal horror that twists and bends their perceptions of reality. It is a campaign that, I think, rivals Masks of Nyarlathotep. If you love Delta Green, you have to pick this up.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Delta Green: Impossible Landscapes
by Brooks K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/27/2021 18:33:01

This is one of the greatest RPG campaigns ever made.. As a fan of horror / weird fiction and beyond this is the kind of pen and paper game i always wanted to run with a group.. The authors and artists of this book deserve multiple awards.. Thank you !!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Delta Green: Impossible Landscapes
by Brian D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/27/2021 18:28:43

Seized by the terrifying wonders contained in its pages, I feel the need to evangelize and tell everyone that this is one of the most fabulous game books I’ve ever owned.

For those in the dark, Delta Green is a role-playing game set in the present where players take on the roles of covert agents who “fight to save humanity from unnatural horrors—often at a shattering personal cost.” Like the Call of Cthulhu RPG, from which DG first developed, this isn’t an RPG about crawling through dungeons and slaying dragons in a quest for glory, treasure, and ever more power. Instead, it’s a game about facing off against horrors beyond human comprehension and trying to make it to the next day. While characters (called “Agents” in DG) might become more skilled as they progress, they also become mentally and physically damaged by the forces they face. Victory isn’t about vanquishing some Dark Lord for all time—it’s about staving off the apocalypse for a little while longer. It’s about horror and survival.

As a campaign book, Impossible Landscapes is for gamemasters (called a “Handler” in DG) and contains secrets to be unleashed on the players. The campaign itself is a series of four interconnected adventures, but the book is more. So much more. Believe me when I say that this book can easily keep a game group occupied for months or years.

Impossible Landscapes focuses on a particular type of horror: surreal horror. The terrors conjured out of the human mind and given shape, the absurd presented as ordinary, the inability to know if what an Agent is perceiving is real, the gnawing fear that everything around an Agent is an elaborately-staged play—these are the kinds of horrors the Agents can expect. Surreal horror is tailored to the particular details of the Agents and requires a Handler to think carefully about the minds of those characters. Fortunately, Detwiller provides ample advice, examples, NPCs, artifacts, and images so that the Handler has the resources they need.

Just as the in-world play The King in Yellow reaches beyond the page and opens the reader to the ministrations of its corrupting words, so too does Delta Green: Impossible Landscapes lodge itself like a worm in the mind. It is beautiful to behold, yet sometimes marred by scribbles or marginal notes. But the scribbles too are part of the larger whole—they hint at greater mysteries and suggest that others have read this book, that there is some larger plan at work beyond what the book discusses. They lead the reader to believe what they’re holding is an artifact pulled from some far-off (yet tantalizingly familiar) plane of existence the book describes. It is metafiction in the best possible way—teasing and hinting, giving the Handler entertainment, yes, but also teaching by example. “This is what surreal horror is,” the book says. “This is what it looks and feels like.”

And the art. The art! The book is stunningly gorgeous. Each image, each background, each in-world artifact captured in the book itself screams to be shown off. It helps that Dennis Detwiller is a phenomenal artist. Each page shows a precise attention to detail that serves to create the appropriate tone for the campaign. I often find myself scanning a page for little clues and details that are hidden there, just like a (foolishly) curious Agent. And that’s how it should be—the reader is meant to go deeper and deeper into the text in a search for meaning. It is a wonderful experience.

As an early backer of the project who had access to some of the text before, I have run “Night Floors,” the first adventure in the campaign, a couple of times already. And now I need to run it again, this time armed with the forbidden knowledge to create a complete campaign. Because once the King in Yellow has a hold of you, it never lets go…

10/10, Must Buy!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Delta Green: Impossible Landscapes
by Heather P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/27/2021 18:11:11

Pick it up out of curiosity, like you did that copy of The King in Yellow back when you were in college. Back before everything went wrong.

Buy Impossible Landscapes for the art, now that you're an artist and an aesthete. You weren't one before you read The King in Yellow. Now you know better about a lot of things.

The best way to describe Impossible Landscapes is cunning. You and your players will become enveloped in scenarios that lead the players away from reality and into the grip of the Yellow King. You must go there first, to show them the way.

Go there now.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Delta Green: Impossible Landscapes
by Tobias W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/27/2021 17:06:34

This is the best thing ever published. Seriously. Read it, be amazed and go mad. You won't regret it. If this work of art does not win every ENnie I don't know what to believe in anymore.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Delta Green: Impossible Landscapes
by Charley A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/27/2021 09:37:26

Like all things Delta Green, be careful what you wish for, because The King In Yellow is back in a big way. Impossible Landscapes is as much a self contained campaign book as it is at times an introduction of the Hastur Mythos and how to use it within Delta Green as a whole and is a fantastic resource for anyone looking to expand their sessions beyond more "traditional" Cthulu Mythos encounters and concepts. The book itself is full of unsettling but still fantastic artwork and the writing style continues the always entertaining and immersive Delta Green writing style of being instructional while partially written in-cannon of the series. May all our trips to Lake Hali be as wonderful as this book is.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Delta Green: The Last Equation
by charles U. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/07/2020 01:41:53

Remember in school, when you knew you had math class the following period? Remember that sinking feeling in your gut that you'd get? "Aw crap, I knew I shoulda studied the pythagorean theorum just a bit more, practiced more advanced algebra... What if there's a pop quiz?!" Get ready to relive that feeling with The Last Equation, a Delta Green RPG scenario of modern Mythos horror. Step into the shoes of a Delta Green agent: a deniable asset in the war against the apocalypse. The Last Equation sees you investigating a horrific crime scene. An entire family gunned down by a college kid. And a number spray painted on the road. What could this all mean? In my opinion, The Last Equation is one of the better DG scenarios you could buy. It's pretty easy to run, but it still leaves a lot of room for groups to be very creative - or get into trouble! - at the table. And the mystery itself is pretty unsettling. If you're looking for a solid scenario to get your Working Group up and running, or if you need a reason to call some agents in from the cold, you can't go wrong with purchasing The Last Equation.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Delta Green: The Last Equation
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Delta Green: A Victim of the Art
by Aaro S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/01/2020 11:46:30

Contains some spoilers!

--

In general, it is a solid and engaging introductory adventure, but requires still some preparations before the game.

There are a couple of little things that preclude me giving a perfect 5/5 rating:

Most annoying one: While the scenario comes with nice maps and all, the Glenridge city map can not be handed out to players until after they have found all the clues in it.

Secondly, there are not many NPCs for players to interview. There is one primary clue pointing out to the perpretrator, but I'd like to have alternative ones and one can imagine how to provide them (victims' families, friends, etc could provide them). Again, this is something any GM can come up with by themselves, but it would be nice to have some more flesh.

Also, as a matter of personal taste, I myself do not think it fits that the "cosmic terror" aspect that humans would be being able to control and command Mythos creatures (feels to DnD-like to me), but that can be again easily changed: I personally adjusted the scenario so that despite what some people think (They are deluded), cosmic terrors do not care for orders and commands, they listen to suggestions.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Delta Green: A Victim of the Art
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Delta Green: Handler's Guide
by Aaro S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/30/2020 16:31:54

In general, a very high quality Handler/GM guide to complement the Agents' Handbook. Documentation for most parts is well organized and easy to read. Especially I liked the insight how to twist classic and more modern Mythos creatures into something players won't expect. Illustrations, like in Agents' Handbook, are quite top-notch and set the mood.

My minor reservation is that the history timeline gets bogged down close to modern times (and main bulk of published scenarios it AFAIK refers), becoming dense and difficult to interpret unless you are familiar with the aforementioned scenarios. However, it is not bad, one can still skim it to get ideas and inspirations.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Delta Green: Handler's Guide
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Delta Green: Need to Know -- Free Starter Rulebook
by Jay G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/05/2020 21:49:44

I had seen a video review of Delta Green Last Things Last on youtube and decided to download Need To Know and run it for a group of my friends. I was so impressed by what I was reading that I'd only gotten a dozen pages in when I called my FLGS and ordered the physical book (with screen!). So obviously I really like it and think anyone interested in a modern cthulhu/horror game should get this immediately.

Delta Green is at it's core a mash-up of Call Of Cthulhu and The X-Files. Mechanically the game is similar to Call Of Cthulhu's basic role playing system, and is extremely easy to pick up and learn. For anyone looking for a modern take on horror that is easy to learn and play Delta Green is it.

The scenario contained in Need To Know, Last Things Last is a great introduction to the system's rules and showcases the difference between tradtional combat-based RPGs and Delta Green. The option for combat is there, but the focus is on investigation, and the scenario can be completed without any combat at all.

Delta Green Need To Know would have easily been a bargain as an e-pub for $10, for free if you're even faintly curious there's no reason not to download.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Delta Green: Need to Know -- Free Starter Rulebook
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Delta Green: Music From a Darkened Room
by Matt J. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/29/2020 04:57:59

I'm coming to the end of running this operation with my local group and its the most fun I've had running a game in a long time. The central conceit starts out as seeming like a fairly typical horror trope to the agents but the depth of background helps you as Handler build a rich operation around the sleepy area of Meadowbrook.

Like all DG operations, you'll need to do a good bit of preparation to add your own flavour to make the setting rich and 'real' but your players will have a harrowing riot playing this operation and their Agents, should they survive, will certainly remember their time in Meadowbrook.

I would say that this operation is going to a be a little more challenging to run as your first operation, but once you've run Last Thing's Last or something similarly well contained, definitely make Music from a Darkened Room your next stop.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Delta Green: Music From a Darkened Room
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Delta Green: Agent's Handbook
by Thomas V. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/28/2020 00:29:21

This is probably my favorite RPG of many tried but absolutely one of the best games ever made. I have GMed several scenarios for two groups and more one-shots, so I have spent a lot of time with it. The new version has improved the rules so that they become very fluid. The addition of bonds and willpower creates a frame for the players to roleplay their characters in a way many other horror RPGs does not (usually boils down to blind survival, throwing the RP element out the window). The lore is close to Call of Cthulhu but the angle of "the people are the real threat" is far superior, as it no longer feels as a tacked on thing onto our world. Lastly, all released books are to a very high standard, especially this one and the Handler. There is so much info on everything you need to run. I cannot recommend this game enough.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Delta Green: Agent's Handbook
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