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Delta Green: Puppet Shows & Shadow Plays
 
€4,62
Average Rating:3.9 / 5
Ratings Reviews Total
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Delta Green: Puppet Shows & Shadow Plays
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Delta Green: Puppet Shows & Shadow Plays
Publisher: Arc Dream Publishing
by Eric [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/16/2024 19:34:27

This scenario is perfect for what its meant to do - introduce new agents into Delta Green. The vibes are perfectly creepy, and it leaves plenty of space for a Handler to lean into the aspects of the game (roleplay, investigation, combat, the supernatural) that they and their players find most appealing.

I just recently launched a new Delta Green actual play campaign, and I knew from the very start that I wanted to use PS&SPs as the intro scenario. It did not disappoint.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Delta Green: Puppet Shows & Shadow Plays
Publisher: Arc Dream Publishing
by Sean [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/16/2024 13:56:39

Pros: Puppet Shows and Shadow Plays absolutely has some merits. The PDF and art are of high quality and make, as is typical for Arc Dream's products. It's reasonably priced, and you can rest assured that, as a Handler, you're getting your money's worth even if you never run it

just being able to have the statblocks, and see how the encounter is structured, is immensely helpful.

In addition, having another "intro" Operation is always welcome to help break up the stranglehold of Last Things Last as an intro (nothing wrong with LTL, just nice to have options). If you're into the MAJESTIC-DG conflict, Shadow Plays sets that up quite nicely (which, in turn, lets you flow pretty decently into Convergence, the other '90's published operation, which also features MAJESTIC). The antagonist is suitably well-thought out and interesting, and very in flavor of the '90's X-File, Men-In-Black theme that Conspiracy-era DG ops love to XXX into.

Cons: Uniquely (in my experience) among DG Operations, Shadow Plays pulls its punches rather significantly. Information is given to the players even if they decide not to pursue it. Several fights are, while admittedly cinematic, also slightly "scripted" through the use of bullet-sponge NPCs, which makes it somewhat dissonant among operations and may provide the players with a false sense of the game. This also can make the operation feel a bit "scripted" at times. There is a large-scale manhunt midway through the module which has very limited support or mechanical advice on how to run, but which is fairly vital to the op as a whole. Some more support on how to run that, or some sort of minigame, would have been lovely. Others have also stated the heavy Native American religious presence in Shadow Plays - as I'm not Apache, I don't know as to the accuracy of this portrayal (though I trust Arc Dream far more than others to handle this respectfully), but that could possibly prove a source of discomfort for Handlers. Or not! Finally, and not necessarily a Con, but Shadow Plays is the second main operation, and the third (?) op in general, published in the 1990's "Conspiracy" era of Delta Green (after it's sister Op "Convergence" and the MAJESTIC-centered "Jack Frost"). While this setting is quite juicy, it also means that Handlers may have difficulty integrating the op with more "modern" operations that deal with the Outlaws and the Program (the common fix is to just replace the Program with MAJESTIC, which is what I did, but that is an additional constraint on Handlers). Overall: Puppet Shows and Shadow Plays is somewhat flawed in its execution, but it is clearly made with heart and effort, and is of high quality and reasonable price, like all Arc Dream products. Running PSSP may require some Handler tinkering for the Op, and larger Handler structuring to integrate it into a wider campaign, but, ultimately, your players will likely relish the mouthfeel and setting of the op, and come away wanting more.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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Delta Green: Puppet Shows & Shadow Plays
Publisher: Arc Dream Publishing
by Harald [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/09/2024 21:05:52

This is an adventure with a nostalgic touch for me: I got my a-levels in the 90s, and remember some of the topics touched in the game: the Apache Business Consortium (that built the Casino and really got the people some money) had not been founded, cell-phones where new and female action stars were rare. This is also a classic scenario in the sense that (one of) the antagonists is THE very most met antagonist in all Lovecraftian gaming ever. Mr. N. is not the main problem, though: he is a horror element that is both helpful and horrible. In my opinion the best way to use him. The real opponent is a terror in it's own rights -really NOT nice- but not invincible. The scenario is well made, some details are hints to fill with tv-show lore (this was the high time of FBI medial presence) and all in all I like this quite well. For anyone willing to play traditional horror -with a smart twist- in a "classic" setting: recommended.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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Delta Green: Puppet Shows & Shadow Plays
Publisher: Arc Dream Publishing
by Lex [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/17/2024 10:15:39

Very disappointed on my readthrough of this scenario given its frequent hype as one of the "classic" or "quintessential" Delta Green scenarios, as it's just not very good...

As written, there are minimal opportunities for player characters to exercise any meaningful agency to progress or develop the investigation/narrative, and are instead just handed information multiple times and being shunted into the next scene. Extremely railroady with multiple scenes bluntly forcing PCs into one possible outcome, and pre-scripted "fights" that also only have one outcome where GMs are encouraged to include bullet-sponge NPCs to take and deal all the real damage involved...

All of these critiques considered aside from the Native American religious iconography tie-ins, which feel at least somewhat problematic to me, and I would not feel comfortable portraying at the table...

I could go on, but overall, I would recommend almost any other published Delta Green scenario over this one.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
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Delta Green: Puppet Shows & Shadow Plays
Publisher: Arc Dream Publishing
by 12 [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/19/2023 18:43:08

Since this was one of the original DG scenarios from back when the game used to be a CoC setting, I'm glad this update exists, but the scenario itself isn't great. The way it combines Native American religious iconography and the mythos feels played out at best.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
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