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ALIEN RPG Core Rulebook
Publisher: Free League Publishing
by Joe A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/19/2020 03:41:15

Finnished our first story of a 'space truckers' sandnox campaign. I loved the 'stress and panic' mechanic, the way mounting fear pushed characters to both exceede their normal limits but face the growing threat of simply loosing it due to the terror really added atmosphere and added a whole new layer of tension to violent confrontations. The damage and critical system is satisfyingly brutal it has enough rules crunch to be nasty without bogging down.

IF i where to pick one minor critisim its that the rulebook prizes asthetics over readability. It drips atmosphere and certainly suits the vibe of the game but its not one tI found easiy to flip through to find stuff untill I already already have a fair idea where to look. This was a sufficently minor problem for me that I didnt drop it a star, but others may find it harder.

All in all an excellent game.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
ALIEN RPG Core Rulebook
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Arms of the Chosen
Publisher: Onyx Path Publishing
by Joe A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/26/2018 16:51:51

Arms of the chosen is a source book of magic items for the third edition of exalted, focusing on the new 'Evocation' mechanic, where by which by wielding a legendary item ( or forging a legend with an item) the wielder can unlock unique abilities. In comparison to second edition books it is closer to ' Wonders of the lost age' rather than 'Odenel's codex' There is some general 'fluff' on magic materials and artifact creation, some errata and some guidance on creating evocations for your artifacts in campaigns, but that is approximately 8 pages out of 173, most of the book is taken up by example arms and armour. Looking at story surrounding the item and evocations that come off it. There is also a chapter on 'Miscellaneous' magic, which is a bit of a mixed bag, some hearthstones, some new items, and the return of some classics, like the dragon tear tiara, the golden viper and the implosion bow. Finally, their is a chapter on warstriders, with information on their general function an some named legendary warstriders and their evocation trees, there are a some fun homages to Escaflowne and Evangelion in this section. Both the art and the fiction are good, the chapter stories each focus around the theme of the chapter, so the intro chapter is about crafting, the weapons chapter features a legendary blade, they are very flavorful and with the art add greatly to the feel of the book. Aside from the miscellaneous chapter, which as the name suggests is a mixed bag, the items in this book are intended to be important parts of a characters story. To evoke, if you pardon the pun, the feeling of wielding Glamdring or Stormbringer rather than 'just a Daiklave' it's not about the power per say, since the XP spend on evocations could have been spent on other charms, but about making the item part of the legend. Thier where only a few minor niggles; most of which stem from when this book was released, with only the Solars as playable exalts. So the terms solar and exalt are used largely interchangeably in the charm descriptions, while there is some clearly 'solar only' evocations their is no clear commentary on modifiying the charm trees for non solars, even though the notes on magical material resonance in the charm description imply some of them could be used by a non-solar exalt. Over all I liked this book, there is plenty to inspire character and inspire plot.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Arms of the Chosen
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The Dark Eye - The Thorwal Drum
Publisher: Ulisses Spiele
by Joe A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/19/2016 16:26:14

This was the first Dark Eye adventure I ran, It is an adventure that deals primarly with social tensions and civic unrest rather than monsters and treasure. It was a refreshing and unique start.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Dark Eye - The Thorwal Drum
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The Dark Eye - Core Rules
Publisher: Ulisses Spiele
by Joe A. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/19/2016 16:20:37

Disclaimer I kickstarted the Dark Eye in the recent edition and had recently run a game and will be running one again in the future. I enjoyed it, and my players enjoyed it enough to insist on playing it again. My good experience with the game thus may colour my view

The Dark Eye

The Dark Eye, is a classic style fantasy RPG. It is the same genre of RPG as DnD, Palladium, Pathfinder, Rolemaster, Dragon Warriors et al. It is an excellent example of its kind. If that's not kind of RPG you're looking for, this isn't for you. If how ever it is then I heartily recommend it.

It shows the benefits of its 30 years of play and development, both regarding mechanics, presentation and the fact it has a rich and developed setting. Unlike the trend with Dnd and Pathfinder, there is extensive background information in the book. As I said above, Aventuria is a classic world; the kind fantasy games often define themselves by deviating from, it has its own unique flavour of classic,Classic does not mean bland! you can see how it and DnD sprang from the same cultural root, but produced roses of different colours.

Points are the rule ( adventure points or AP) for both character gen and progression. You get a dauntingly large amount of them at character gen, and there are no classes and no levels. Instead Cultural and profession 'packages' exist to simplify and guide character gen but these are highly modifiable. So you can spend your points in big chunks and generate the character quickly or take your time tinkering and perfecting depending on your needs and whims. You gain more AP to advance the character through play.

I enjoyed the skill mechanic, which worked well and easily in play. You roll against three attributes, spending skill points to ensure all three rolls succeed, left over skill points contribute to the quality of the success. It sounds (and read) a little complex but 'on the table' we found it quickly became intuitive and useful.

The combat system worked smoothly as well. I found its system of conditions and status much easier to use than pathfinders keyword. The accumulation of 'Pain' status added a little life and interest to a HP based damage system.

Throughout the rulebook, there are liberal examples of ways to simplify or complicate the rules to suit your style of play.

Conclusion, a well-written, well-produced game that stays faithful to and delivers on its key premise of classic fantasy RP.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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