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Old-School Essentials Classic Fantasy: Rules Tome
by Scott S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/08/2022 09:10:19

This is the finest evocation of B/X Dungeons and Dragons in the OSR movement! It is the best!! Bar none!!! This is due, in part, to the absolute cleanness of the rules, but mostly to the layout and presentation of said rules. The triumph of the two page layout makes it very easy on the eye and helps the newer players to be able to follow the flow of information. This game is a triumph and deserves your attention and investment!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Old-School Essentials Classic Fantasy: Rules Tome
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Wormskin Issue 6
by Anita C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/01/2022 17:08:46

I have not received issue 5 through 8 yet. So I cannot write a review yet. But I am sure I will be happy with them. I received 1, 2, 3, and I was very happy with those.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Wormskin Issue 6
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The Hole in the Oak
by EDWARD J. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/10/2022 14:30:09

Unadulaterated fun. Interactive, varied, polished. Has a personality without falling into button-pushing or trope-abuse. Little wrinkles of suprise for both players and referee throughout. Woekd well for both my young kids and my regular grown-up group (both using OSE rules)



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Hole in the Oak
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Old-School Essentials Advanced Fantasy Player's Tome
by shawn p. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/03/2022 15:21:09

I like to be prepared, so I think it would be a slight exaggeration to call this and the accompanying Referee's Tome the only thing you need to run an advanced old-school game. Instead, in my view, this little book, the Referee's Tome, and a good, solid adventure module are the only things you need to buy to run an advanced old-school game. Combine this with the freely-available advice and writings you can find online about the mindset to get into for these kinds of games and how to run them, and you're pretty much set. The layout in these PDFs is almost unreasonably good; I was initially sad to know there was no SRD-equivalent for the Advanced rules, given the great wiki-like layout of the OSE SRD, but the formatting of this PDF makes up for that in spades. Well worth the asking price.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Old-School Essentials Advanced Fantasy Player's Tome
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Old-School Essentials Advanced Fantasy Referee's Tome
by Pedro B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/31/2021 10:04:38

What is there to say? Simply the best Old School D&D resource ever printed. The only flaw is that the print edition is constantly sold out.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Old-School Essentials Advanced Fantasy Referee's Tome
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Carcass Crawler: Issue One
by Kalin K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/04/2021 00:12:56

Really good material in this one, and if all Carcass Crawlers are going to be of this level of quality, then this is shaping up to be an awesome zine!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Carcass Crawler: Issue One
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Old-School Essentials Advanced Fantasy Player's Tome
by michael m. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/23/2021 08:48:45

Great book. If you're into old school games. I highly recommend this. The rules are a combination of Basic D&D and AD&D. Well edited and great illustrations. The layout makes the rules easy to find. Compatible with Labyrinth Lord, Basic D&D and Swords & Wizardry.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Old-School Essentials Advanced Fantasy Player's Tome
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The Hole in the Oak
by Bill R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/15/2021 21:58:52

My friends and I are playing this these days. Some new players and some experienced. It is super fun! I highly reccomend this.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Hole in the Oak
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The Incandescent Grottoes
by Timothy B. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 07/06/2021 10:59:50

Originally posted here: https://theotherside.timsbrannan.com/2021/07/review-old-school-essentials-adventures.html

There are a lot of great clones out there but right now nothing is scratching my old-school itch quite like OSE. I got my Kickstarter package a bit back and while I was engrossed with the rules of the new books, I utterly failed to give much attention to the two included adventures. That is until I started hearing people talk about them more online. I went back to them and you know what? They are really kind of great.

For this review, I am considering both the hardcover copies I got with the Kickstarter and the PDF copies from DriveThru RPG. The adventure is a 48-page, full-color book. The maps are printed on the inside covers with encounter areas labeled on the maps. The physical books are A5 format (5.8" x 8.3", 148mm x 210mm).

The Incandescent Grottoes by Gavin Norman

This is an introductory adventure designed for characters level 1-2, written by OSE creator Gavin Norman with art by Nate Treme.

The adventure could be considered a dungeon crawl along the lines of Keep on the Borderlands, but like so much of OSE it taps into how the games were played rather than written. The dungeons of IG could be like the Caves of Chaos, but more accurately they are played like Caves of Chaos were played back then. What do I mean? Well, there is a demonic cult here, The Cult of the Faceless Lord. There are factions within the dungeon and how they interact. Plus goals for the various groups of monsters. There are tables of treasures and random occurrences to make exploring this dungeon something players can keep coming back to.

The rooms and areas a very nicely detailed and the whimsical art really adds to the dream-like qualities of the adventure. There is even a dragon waiting for the characters at the end! Ok, it is not a very powerful one, but to 1st and 2nd level characters it is powerful enough. There are some new monsters (the aforementioned dragon) and lots of great encounters.

While there is no overt meta-plot here, one could easily see this as some sort of introduction to a cult of Juiblex vying for control of the Mythic Underworld.

A bit about the name. I can't help but notice that a 1st level adventure into the "Mythic Underground" can be read as "I(n) Can Descen(d)t." I am sure this is intentional.

If these are examples of how adventures for OSE are going to be written in the future then OSE is going have a nice long shelf life. While neither adventure is revolutionary in design or concepts they are really good adventures.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Incandescent Grottoes
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Halls of the Blood King
by Timothy B. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 07/06/2021 10:59:41

Originally posted here: https://theotherside.timsbrannan.com/2021/07/review-old-school-essentials-adventures.html

There are a lot of great clones out there but right now nothing is scratching my old-school itch quite like OSE. I got my Kickstarter package a bit back and while I was engrossed with the rules of the new books, I utterly failed to give much attention to the two included adventures. That is until I started hearing people talk about them more online. I went back to them and you know what? They are really kind of great.

For this review, I am considering both the hardcover copies I got with the Kickstarter and the PDF copies from DriveThru RPG. The adventure is a 48-page, full-color book. The maps are printed on the inside covers with encounter areas labeled on the maps. The physical books are A5 format (5.8" x 8.3", 148mm x 210mm).

Halls of the Blood King by Diogo Nogueira

Diogo Nogueira has been racking up an impressive list of RPG publications and getting him to pen an adventure for OSE is quite a score. And the adventure is pretty much what I hoped it would be like.

This time the artist is Justine Jones. If the art of Incandescent Grottoes is dream-like then the art here is nightmarish. I mean that in the most positive way.

The adventure is set up in a manner similar to other OSE adventures. We get maps with major encounter areas, descriptions and relationships of the major factions/NPCs/Monsters.

The adventure itself is a castle of a vampire lord for characters of 3rd to 5th level.

Detail-wise this adventure lives somewhere between the sparse-ness Palace of the Vampire Queen and the detail rich Ravenloft. I don't want this to sound like there not a lot of detail here, there is, but there is no over arching epic here. This is great since it allows you to take this adventure and work it into your world much easier. For example with a tweak or two here and there I could make this "Halls of the Blood Queen" and add it rather nicely to my War of the Witch Queens campaign. This would work out well since I am using OSE for that. The only thing stopping me is I have so many Vampire Queens now! But still, it would be fun and very, very easy.

The adventure is also rather good and looks like a lot of fun.

If these are examples of how adventures for OSE are going to be written in the future then OSE is going have a nice long shelf life. While neither adventure is revolutionary in design or concepts they are really good adventures.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Halls of the Blood King
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The Hole in the Oak
by Michael A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/17/2021 07:59:56

Awesome little dugeon with room for growth!

It was very easy to run at the table, my first time running it I only had about 1 hour to prepare and the players were enchanted by the atmosphere. The layout and descriptions have just enough there to evoke the senses with plenty of opportunity or the referee to expand. There are a couple spots where it is noted that you can easily expand the dungeon into a multi-level environment and I will do just that when my players think they have 'beat' the dungoen. An excellent starter/learner dungoen with plenty of danger, gold, and glory to be had.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Hole in the Oak
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The Hole in the Oak
by Tim Z. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/08/2021 15:22:16

Fantastic advernture for those looking for Old School D&D role-playing. I played through this as a player (Thief 2nd Level) and a DM. Don't let the cover and inside art fool you...this adventure is not child's play. However, its a great adventure for those who are starting with their characters at Level 1-4. It is a balanced "dungeon" filled with wonderous traps and evil baddies. I wish THIS was the adventure module I started playing D&D with back in the 80's instead of Keep on the Borderlands. Great stuff and can't wait to play more from OSE.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Halls of the Blood King
by Marco E. D. P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/05/2021 15:02:48

Plain and simple: when you see something with Diogo's signature, just buy it. No kidding: he's one of my favorite game designers ever and his games are all about having fun with some degree of horror and weirdness. Pair this with an awesome tablet friendly layout and ease of access with the perfect rendition to BX D&D and it's deal. Note that I don't like premade adventures, but this is a brutal and funny horror sandbox to splash into any existing dark themed campaigns.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Halls of the Blood King
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The Incandescent Grottoes
by Ryan M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/05/2021 08:23:53

Please check out my review below.

https://thac0rpg.blogspot.com/2021/03/the-incandescent-grottoes-review.html



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Incandescent Grottoes
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Old-School Essentials: Basic Rules
by Jesper P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/21/2021 08:45:28

Simple, useful and a great layout. This book was so good i got it printed and turned into a hand stitched book.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Old-School Essentials: Basic Rules
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