The Danger Gal Dossier was a very anticipated book for a lot of us in the community, as many gangs from previous editions have lacked much lore to them. Not like I can blame R. Tal for that, you only have so many pages, but this book sought to rectify that issue, and it did in spades. Maybe I wish it was another 50 pages long, but that's complaining about not getting enough of a good thing.
The book starts with a useful guide on how to use the NPCs and factions contained with in before getting into the meat of the book. Each group is given a very enlightneing opening page done in character as Danger Gal operatives to speak about the group's origins, goals, resources, and any other useful trivia to help run them better. It also provides a handy template for making your own factions in Night City, something that people interested in a book like this will certainly consider.
The majority of gangs and organizations (hard to call loose confederations of characters like 'edgerunners' a gang) along with smatterings of corporations are on display here, with each one being given care and consideration not only to their lore, but also their gear. The unique spread of weapons and other gear given to each NPC is very nice, although it is a shame that more from Black Chrome couldn't be used (understandable since anything listed here had to be reprinted), but even with that limitation and the sizeable amount of reprints from different supplementary material, most NPCs still stand out from both a gear and lore perspective.
2020 players and 2077 gamers will notice some familiar faces coming out to play, helping to better integrate people from either of those groups into the diverse world of Cyberpunk RED. I can say that from the lore and concepts given for each character that even a new GM should have a solid idea of how to run each character in a unique fashion. The care given to groups like The Bozos, Danger Gal's Puma Squad, and The Pirhanas especially are the kind that are rife with plot hooks out of the box, from scisms among clowns to interpersonal drama on the Puma Squad, and the Pihranas just all be pretty nutty.
Factions that most players will have in their game such as Trauma Team and NCPD were also given far more capable members than those suggested in the core rulebook, making what could have easily been a squash into a proper rumble. To segue here a bit, DGD also gives a higher tier of opposition in both the Boss (in which the core rules only had what I would call a lacking cyberpsycho) to 10 hardened mini bosses, 6 bosses, and even 3 hardened bosses (Crusher from the Maelstrom is a great example of a real combat monster). This is enough to challenge groups who may have not been intimidated by the CRB's offerings or even the DLC hardened opponents.
Astute readers will also notice what is a treasure trove of unique Tech Upgrades, or TUp, in this book. Plenty are on the more simple end like +4 skill chips, but others are more interesting, such as minor skill bonuses to different skills along with exotics getting +2 option slots. There's so much to pull from for this book, and tech players have a great place to see just how much more diverse they can make their new inventions.
All non CRB gear has been reprinted, including some ellusive items from MicroChrome, a little known piece of the game (with one of the items being reposted in the companion DLC). There's honestly a lot that I'm really glad to see, such as bicycles, junk ammo (great for mooks), and The Observer drone. Smart Lens was reprinted with a slight errata as well to make it not compatible with paired cyberware upgrades, so be aware of that if you're still sticking to the MicroChrome version.
One of the best parts of this are the NPC guidelines (which are guidelines and not hard rules [intended to be only taken as guidelines]), which give the parameters not only for what the concept of a hardened PC is (which can also be found in one of the DLC volumes, so it's not exclusive to this book), as well as the parameters for what makes someone a mook, lieutenant, mini-boss, or boss and the hardened variants of each. Just for clarity, these are just guidelines, not immutable rules, simply suggestions.
The book finishes off with what I consider to be a very charming one shot adventure known as The Incident, even if I knew it by another name first. It's a relatively straightforward adventure which helps introduce the PCs to at least one of the new characters introduced in this book along with a fun bit of investigation, getting to meet with one of the more unique subcultures inside of Night City, and threads that could easily lead themselves into another bit of the adventure.
I did like this book as a whole, but there were some things that I thought could have helped. A small tactics section for each group could have helped to give fights against them more of a unique feel to them, something that with only mostly CRB gear can be difficult. Gear diversity was also an issue, but considering all the gear is self contained, I can give that a pass. I do also feel as though as much as I enjoyed seeing the pregen characters in the edgerunner's section of the book, that group was given too much real estate, and I wish there could have been another faction or two in place of those characters, since the edgerunner group was probably my least favorite of the book while also being the largest at 17.
These are nitpicks though, and as a whole Danger Gal Dossier opens up so much lore to the world that if you enjoy Night City even a little bit, it's very much worth it to pick this up. Full five stars, seal of approval, and whatever else I can give it because the team knocked it out of the park, and they've left me incredibly excited for their next offering.
[5 of 5 Stars!]