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Chronicles of Darkness: The Contagion Chronicle €18,68
Average Rating:4.7 / 5
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Chronicles of Darkness: The Contagion Chronicle
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Chronicles of Darkness: The Contagion Chronicle
Publisher: Onyx Path Publishing
by P. B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/03/2020 12:32:51

First, know that what is in this book is pretty good, as we’ve come to expect from the Chronicles of Darkness. The low star rating is not about that at all.

The descriptions of the various multi-splat groups that fight the Contagion – divided between the broad categorization of the Sworn and the False – are given well thought out histories and visions, and their various powers, called Vectors, work well and can add great options to any game. The fact that each Sworn faction comes across a little too much like a heroic squad of monsters dedicated to save the world from reality-shaking Contagion does go against some of the themes of various CofD games, but this book does not mandate such an approach. Neither does is depict the False as only nihilistic fanatics, but it's plenty possible to fall into thinking of these two sides in such terms.

Next comes a history of the Contagion and a chapter devoted to running these tales with multiple types of characters from across the CofD titles. This is where the "What's here is good, but..." really showed up. The chapter for the Storyteller fails to give enough guidance on running multi-gameline stories, and the piece I miss most is not the balancing powers or the way various character types would interact. Rather, I would have appreciated more discussion of the themes that each game relies upon, thoughts about how various groups of different types (vampire covenants, fae Courts, hunter Compacts, etc.) can find common ground, maybe ideas to manage how inherently antagonistic supernatural beings' hatred can serve a chronicle. None of this shows up. The chapter almost feels like an afterthought when compared to the word count in the rest of the book.

The entire second half the book is a travelogue of sites where the Contagion has taken hold. These would work better if they’d been offered in more of a modular fashion, allowing a "toolbox" pick-what-you-like approach, but with a little work, that's still an option. However, it's here that the one biggest failing of the book comes to the fore.

Onyx Path Publishing advertised this as a crossover chronicle book, and it is exactly that, but it's not crossover friendly at all. If you are familiar with all of the CofD lines, this book reads pretty well. However, if you are not so well versed – note that at the time of this writing, two of the lines (Mummy: The Curse and Hunter: The Vigil) don’t have Second Edition versions out AND Deviant: The Renegades is still long off – The Contagion Chronicle becomes confusing at best. If the book included a few pages of description on each game line (its themes, what the beings call themselves, how they divide themselves, some words on how their powers work, a brief glossary of common terms), it would make the experience much easier. On a single page, for example, the word "beast" may show up with little to delineate if it refers to a changeling seeming, the inchoate passions of a Kindred, one of the Begotten, or simply an outsider's view of a raging werewolf. Even being fairly familiar with those games, I found myself confused at times.

The Contagion Chronicle is a good book that could have been great with a little more effort. If you want or need some great ideas for crossover stories to tell, definitely buy it. If you are looking for rules and help with running crossovers? Skip this one.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
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Chronicles of Darkness: The Contagion Chronicle
Publisher: Onyx Path Publishing
by Edward C. O. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/24/2020 16:39:17

bought this book day one, and i have read through it 2-3 times since i have gotten the PDF, i won't be talking about the hardcover, because as of writing this review, i haven't gotten my copy yet.

i'm sure i am not the only one who are running Crossover games, so majority of us have homebrewed rules to run things games, with some success and failure.

this book is a solution to give you rules and setting on running a crossover game to have it makes sense, and have a bigger evil for all to attempt to combat or survive. the Contagion is ambiguous in how it was created, whether it was a virus created by the God-Machine a little too well thus infecting the God-Machine, or you can make a super flu that has a 99.7% mortality rate specifically infecting supernaturals by making their touchstones forget them, human blood burns them, really whatever makes sense for your setting. based on this premise of a super virus gives me Stephen King's The Stand vibes. it gives you two major factions and sub sections of the factions, the Sworn are those who try to contain the Contagion, while the False wants to use it for any means. there are some interesting sections and vector powers, which is basically powers that every supernatural and mortals can use, giving specific abilities based on what you are playing.

now the big question is, do you need this book to have crossover games? simple answer.... yes and no.

yes because it gives you rules, setting, and a big unknown baddy that all supernaturals and mortals to come together to work alongside eachother and combat it. however, if you have a homebrew rule setting that makes your chronicle work, then this book isn't for you. however, it does have rules that you do not need the Contagion itself, it can be something else, and it'll fit your chronicle. really, it is a conpendum/supplemental book, much like Hurt Locker, however, it will add to your world, and like i said, if you don't get it because you have a homebrew rule that works, thats fine. if you do get it, it is a good read, and gives you great ideas on how to incorporate the Contagion and the Sworn and False into your setting.

i'll end this by saying, this is primarily for Storytellers, players do not need this book. players just need their character specific book, so if you want to play a Vampire, Werewolf, Mage, Geist, etc. get the specific book, jump in and play in this setting/rules.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Chronicles of Darkness: The Contagion Chronicle
Publisher: Onyx Path Publishing
by A customer [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/23/2020 18:02:45

The book is fine as long as you want to use the God-Machine and have the contagion be an error/problem with the mod machine. If you want anything else the book isn't particularly useful. Honestly it just feels a little uninspired. All of the sample crossover chronicles have different effects on the world but they all come from the same source the God-Machine. It would have been nice to see some examples that had a different source or cause. I can't say the book is a bad one it's just unfortunatly only useful if you want one certain thing a God-Machine chronicle.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
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Chronicles of Darkness: The Contagion Chronicle
Publisher: Onyx Path Publishing
by Henry P. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/23/2020 14:19:48

This is a must have for anyone running multi-splat chronicles in the Chronicles of Darkness. It provides a framework of rules and lore reasons for why different splats should work together to overcome a greater nemesis.

Myself with a few others have been building a shared wester marshes style chronicle world using the Contagion as a basis. But, this can easily work for smaller scale chronicles and provides a number of plot hooks and pre-made settings.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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