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Legend
Publisher: Mongoose
by James L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/09/2016 10:28:47

For $1 it's hard to go wrong with this! I also commend Mongoose for publishing this under the OGL, it has allowed for other BRP-based games such as the new Delta Green. While this volume doesn't include any monsters, it could certainly be used for human-centric/exclusive games, and would work well for Game of Thrones. While I'm not the biggest fan of hit locations, it does add some grit to combat, which again could be used very well for low-fantasy and very deadly games.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Legend
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Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition Quick-Start Rules
Publisher: Chaosium
by James L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/09/2016 10:10:56

This is a very nice face-lift of the CoC quick-start. There really aren't many rule changes, CoC/BRP is still one of the most consistent RPG rule-sets after all this time. I also really liked the new artwork and layout. If this is an indication what the full 7E rule-book will look like, my wallet is ready. 6E really had over-wrought fonts and a really dark look that was hard and painful to read.

If there's only one real downise, it's that at this point it would have been nice to get a new adventure. I can appreciate The Haunting, but assuming it'll be included in 7E like it has been for the past few releases, something new would be nice, especially veteran/returning GMs introducing CoC to new players with this quick-start.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition Quick-Start Rules
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Eclipse Phase Second Edition: Quick-Start Rules
Publisher: Posthuman Studios
by James L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/12/2015 16:36:41

This is an outstanding quick-start, and convinced me to purchase the hardback. As I've read in reviews, I knew the rules were "front-loaded", ie very difficult and complex to start with, and for character generation, but when running the game it's far less complicated. I really like the d100 system, as I'm a huge BRP/CoC fan. This is my first foray into transhuman sci-fi, and the possibilities are just stunning.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Eclipse Phase Second Edition: Quick-Start Rules
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X-plorers Digest Character Sheets
Publisher: Brave Halfling Publishing
by James L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/12/2015 16:29:19

I like this character sheet FAR MORE than the one included in the rules. Very clean and elegant design, just like the rules themselves!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
X-plorers Digest Character Sheets
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Fate Core System
Publisher: Evil Hat Productions
by James L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/28/2014 13:43:14

Another one of those "rules-light" and yet still 300+ pages games.

Pluses: There is a large amount of advice for both playing and running the game, which I'll admit is nice. The layout is very clean and easy to read PDF is free

Minuses: The constant notes on the sides to see another page; for a FATE newbie I'm trying to read and understand this thing, and all I can see are these "hey hey over here, go flip to this other page, NOW!" Despite being 300+ pages, there's still a lot that's not covered (magic, monsters, etc.) Some of the artwork is pretty ridiculous



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Fate Core System
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D&D Basic Set Rulebook (B/X ed.) (Basic)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by James L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/15/2014 16:58:51

I came to the OSR with the creation of retroclones, namely Labyrinth Lord and Basic Fantasy RPG. When this PDF was made available again I purchased it immediately. The writing and organization are clear and clean; Moldvay has created an amazing edition of D&D that is timeless. I'm so glad this and the Cook/Marsh Expert books are available again, and it is well worth the purchase. While I still appreciate the retroclones, I'm sticking to the real thing for my gaming. My only wish is an option for a nice hardcover!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
D&D Basic Set Rulebook (B/X ed.) (Basic)
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Dungeon World
Publisher: Burning Wheel
by James L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/15/2014 16:53:44

I really enjoy the type of game that Dungeon World encourages, but unfortunately it just didn't seem to click for me. I also can't wrap my head around the notion that this is supposedly a rules-light system, yet it's 400+ pages. It doesn't bode well when a common recommendation is to read a free fan-created Beginners Guide just to understand this game.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Dungeon World
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Labyrinth Lord: Revised Edition
Publisher: Goblinoid Games
by James L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/12/2014 07:54:22

This is the retroclone I keep coming back to. Simple and solid foundation of rules; not too skimpy, but not overbearing. Great layout and artwork as well. While the originals are once again available in PDF, and they're great to have for nostalgic reading, Labyrinth Lord will continue to be my fantasy RPG.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Labyrinth Lord: Revised Edition
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Dungeon Crawl Classics RPG (DCC RPG)
Publisher: Goodman Games
by James L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/17/2014 08:21:38

Even for the artwork alone, DCC is worth purchasing. I had extremely high hopes for this game, and for many items it hits the sweet spot (ascending AC, 3-save system, etc.). I think the magic system could be toned down a bit, and I'm not a huge fan of the funky dice. We already have plenty of dice to use.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Dungeon Crawl Classics RPG (DCC RPG)
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Fate Accelerated Edition • A Fate Core Build
Publisher: Evil Hat Productions
by James L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/17/2014 08:19:13

While it's a little too brief in some areas, especially for those new to RPG's, overall I really like the way FAE modifies Fate Core to use approaches rather than skills. Fate Core has the better advice and plenty of examples, but for the actual rules I'll always use FAE.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Fate Accelerated Edition • A Fate Core Build
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Hulks and Horrors - Basic Black Edition
Publisher: Bedroom Wall Press
by James L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/17/2014 08:17:23

Rules-wise I really like H&H, I think it compares favorably to Stars Without Number.

However, $15 for an artless PDF? I don't think so.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Hulks and Horrors - Basic Black Edition
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Swords & Wizardry Core Rules
Publisher: Mythmere Games
by James L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/16/2013 16:45:52

One of the original retroclones, Swords and Wizardry is a great choice for both new-comers as well as those who want something different. It has what I think is the best cover ever created. Simple choices in classes and races, and the single savings throw is nice. I don't get including both ascending and descending armor class; the multiple savings throws were tossed out, so why not just stick to ascending? While some will like all of the asides for alternative ways to play combat, etc. I think they start to get a bit distracting. I just like a game/rulesystem to present one "set way" and then let me house-rule if needed. The Core edition is a nice balance between the spartan Whitebox and the text-dense Complete.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Swords & Wizardry Core Rules
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A5 B/X OSR Character Sheet
Publisher: Gold Piece Publications
by James L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/16/2013 16:39:35

Nice and simple B/X or LL sheet. Like many sheets I've seen, the Equipment section is way too big. I am glad to see it say "Spells/Abilities" rather than just "Spells" like so many other sheets. Other sheets may look prettier or be better for specific games or classes, but overall this one is excellent!



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
A5 B/X OSR Character Sheet
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Castles & Crusades Monsters & Treasure
Publisher: Troll Lord Games
by James L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/16/2013 16:33:27

While some have criticized TLG for separating monters and treasure rather than combining it into the PH, I think it's fine to have this separate so that (mostly) CKs are the ones who will read this. Following the great traditions of AD&D 1E, the monster stat blocks are short and sweet. The descriptions are succinct but provide plenty of info, and the artwork is very nice. The treasure section offers a good selection while not being over-bearing. The editing in this printing leaves a little to desire (miss-spelling "laout" on the title page is unbelievable). I hope M&T eventually gets a nice reprint like the PH has, and some additional clean-up will result in one of the best monster books available.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Castles & Crusades Monsters & Treasure
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Castles & Crusades Players Handbook 7th Printing
Publisher: Troll Lord Games
by James L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/16/2013 16:29:53

A beautiful revision of the Players Handbook. I really like the new logo as well as the full-spread artwork on the cover. The interior is a mixed bag for me; some of the artwork in color is gorgeous, while others have very odd color choices. I like the goldenrod background of the page, but the brown text is not a very good complement and is hard to read on-screen (I have no idea if the hard-copy version is any better or not). Otherwise there aren't too many changes besides encumbrance. If you have the 4th printing, I don't think you'll be missing much. If you're new to C&C, then I would say either get this printing or go ahead and get a hard-copy version.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Castles & Crusades Players Handbook 7th Printing
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