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The Hunters Hunted II
Publisher: Onyx Path Publishing
by Nenad R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 01/24/2014 01:06:33
I have to admit that I was not that impressed with the original Hunters Hunted. I found that it fell a bit flat for me.

The new edition fixes that, and makes the hunters feel a lot more integrated into the World of Darkness, in addition to updating the concepts behind them to the 21st century. It explains the various functions and organisations, as well as how the hunters would conduct themselves.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Hunters Hunted II
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Achtung! Cthulhu: Three Kings - PDQ Core Rule Book
Publisher: Modiphius
by Nenad R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 12/13/2012 04:22:40
I have always loved the PDQ system, and when I saw that this combines it with World War 2 and Cthulhu, this was a perfect product!

The system is the basic PDQ system, with some tweaks to suit the setting better, but overall it works well.

The adventure is an introduction to a longer campaign, and is very well written, giving plenty of options for the GM and players.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Achtung! Cthulhu: Three Kings - PDQ Core Rule Book
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Convention Book: N.W.O.
Publisher: Onyx Path Publishing
by Nenad R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 12/13/2012 03:13:54
This is a welcome update for the NWO to the 21st century. This is a very standard convention book, very reminiscent to the previous ones, but it does a very good job for getting the feel of the NWO across. I find the internet start-up culture fetishism a bit much, and somewhat out of character for the NWO...

Other than that, this is a good book, about one of my favourite convention, and manages to make them believable characters.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Convention Book: N.W.O.
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Kuro
Publisher: Cubicle 7 Entertainment Ltd.
by Nenad R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 12/10/2012 03:35:40
Kuro is a very interesting game, with a very original setting. In my mind, it feels like Ghost in the Shell meets The Ring. The game is set in Japan in 2046. After the Kuro Incident, an event in which Japan is protected from a thermonuclear strike by an unknown force, the country is blockaded by the rest of the world, since they believe that Japan has access to top secret missile shield technology. In the meantime, reports of strange events are on the rise, and while most remain ignorant, some are starting to realise that there is something else in Japan trapped with the people.

The first half of the book is devoted to explaining the setting. It presents a Japan isolated from the rest of the world,and after six months of the blockade, the strain on the country is slowly starting to show through. In the wake of the Kuro incident, there are a number of groups emerging in society, as the people try to deal with what has happened.

The book presents a very cyberpunk feel of the future, with ubiquitous computing, where even the poorest person owns a device, and augmented reality and holograms are everywhere.

The supernatural is making its presence felt, slowly and gradually, with most people dismissing the reports as superstition, or a lone maniac.

The book does an excellent job of presenting the setting, and while I am probably not getting it across in this review, the setting does feel truly unique, while being recognisable and interesting enough to play in.

The system itself is only explained later in the book. To resolve an action, the player rolls a number of D6, equal to his stat, and adds a skill, trying to beat the target number, or the roll of another character.

The system is very simple, straightforward, and easy to learn. I do find that it does not really tie into the setting, and does nothing to evoke the flavor and themes of the game. If I were to run the game, I would probably use something like Fate. The system here is serviceable but a bit bland.

The book closes with an introductory adventure, Origami, in which the characters start of as normal Japanese citizens, and get drawn into some of the events of the world of Kuro. It provides a good introduction to this fascinating setting.

Just for the setting alone, this game is worth the price! Cubicle Seven is planning to release another two books in this setting, and I am really looking forward to them.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Kuro
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The God-Machine Chronicle Anthology
Publisher: Onyx Path Publishing
by Nenad R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 12/05/2012 03:27:10
While the first couple of stories are a bit weak, the collection picks up the pace, and gives an interesting glimpse into a neglected aspect of the World of Darkness. Very atmospheric, and with a lot of good ideas. I can really recommend this collection.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The God-Machine Chronicle Anthology
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Left-Hand Path
Publisher: Onyx Path Publishing
by Nenad R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 11/22/2012 06:31:08
Left Hand Path deals with the rebels and outcasts of mage society, those that are isolated from the Pentacle and Seers, often with very good reason. The book is divided into four, dealing with the Heretics, Mad, Scelesti and Reapers.

It starts off by explaining how the pentacle and seers deal with the Apostates, and how to become one, before looking at the individual factions.

The Heretics and Apostates are those that have rejected the teachings of the Pentacle or Seers, but still remain “normal” mages. As such, they seem to be most likely to be used as player characters. There are some good ideas about how to use them as protagonists and antagonists in your stories, as well as several story seeds focusing on them.
The Mad remind me of the Marauders in the old world of darkness, although they do get a very new world of darkness spin on them. They are based on the gothic idea of madness that stems from moral decay, and some of the details about them manage to be disturbing. Ideas are given how to use them in a chronicle, as well as some suggested Mad. I think that they have a lot of potential, but I found the section on them a bit sparse and lacking.
The Scelesti are a bit of a stereotypical villain group, in the fact that they want to end the world as we know it, possibly to replace it with the Abyss. The information in here expands on the Mage rulebook, and presents other factions of the Scelesti, as well as some ideas about their structure, organisation, and practices.
Finally, the Repers are discussed, with a long section on the Tremere, although I find the two new factions intorduced in that section far more interesting, especially the (Legion), which have the right mix of interesting and creepy to be used in most games.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Left-Hand Path
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Our Last Best Hope
Publisher: Magpie Games
by Nenad R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 11/16/2012 03:54:34
This is a game that does exactly what it set out to do, It is designed to emulate a very speciific scenario, in which a small team is sent out to do something to save the world. All the mechanics are geared towards that one goal, and do so very well.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Our Last Best Hope
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Supernatural Handbook
Publisher: Green Ronin
by Nenad R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 11/14/2012 06:39:02
This is an excellent resource on running horror games and sessions, and is highly recommended, even if you do not run M&M. There is an emphasis on incorporating horror into a superhero setting, but the book is full of ideas, as well as a good explanation of how to create horror, and how to create interesting antagonists.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Supernatural Handbook
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Trail of Cthulhu: Sisters of Sorrow
Publisher: Pelgrane Press
by Nenad R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 11/05/2012 07:15:04
The layout is a bit confusing, and tends to jump around a lot. The adventure itself is interesting, although very specific to the setting, and would require a lot of work to be incorporated into a running campaign. It is much better suited to a one-shot.

Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Trail of Cthulhu: Sisters of Sorrow
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Eclipse Phase: Rimward
Publisher: Posthuman Studios LLC
by Nenad R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 11/05/2012 05:30:16
This product has an excellent overview of the outer soalr system in the Eclipse Phase World. It gives a lot of interesting locations, factions and ideas that can easily incorporated in any Eclipse Phase games, even in the inner system, as it explains the impact that the Outer System has on the inner.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Eclipse Phase: Rimward
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Ashen Stars: Tartarus
Publisher: Pelgrane Press
by Nenad R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 10/23/2012 05:50:44
A well-written module, with a couple of twists, and some ideas on how to use it. Useful for those times where you have not been able to prepare anything. It is easy to slot it into most Ashen Stars Campaigns, and it fits well with the feel of the game.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Ashen Stars: Tartarus
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Play Unsafe
Publisher: Graham Walmsley
by Nenad R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 10/17/2012 07:48:35
I have heard of Play Unsafe by Graham Welmsley when it first came out, but I only got around to reading it in the last couple of days. I really wish I have read this earlier, since I think it would have improved my gaming no end. While the book is very short, it is packed to the brim with information, suggestions and ideas. In the book, Graham draws on some lessons from improv, about how to make the game more enjoyable for everyone at the table. The central ideas are one of trust, doing the obvious and taking risks.

TRUST
A gaming group always needs trust around the table, and Playing Unsafe emphasises that fact. Trust enables the players to relax, and to go with the flow of ideas around the table. I have experienced a flowing game, where the whole table gets on the same wavelength, and we just push forward, riffing off each other. Every time that happened, I played with people I trusted.

DOING THE OBVIOUS
I found the idea of doing the obvious mindblowing. Something may seem completely obvious to you, but to the other players it will seem like a breath of fresh air. I have spent too much time and effort in the past trying to come up with an elaborate scheme, just to see it fall flat.

TAKING RISKS
The idea of taking risks is linked with the idea of trust at the table. It means that you are free to do interesting things with your character, and to take the story in unexpected and different directions, while knowing that you will have the support of the rest of the table.

Overall, Play Unsafe is a book that I wish I had gotten when I started roleplaying, It is packed full of ideas and new ways of looking at things that would help in any game.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Play Unsafe
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Marvel Heroic Roleplaying: Civil War Fifty State Initiative
Publisher: Margaret Weis Productions
by Nenad R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 10/09/2012 04:12:08
This book gives an overview of the initiative teams, as well as the Thuderbolts and heroes for hire. I found the write ups of the teams a bit sparse, but they do give enough ideas to get started, although I am not sure how useful they would be for somebody who has not read the storyline.

But then again, you have to love a book that gives you the stats for both Howard the Duck and Squirell Girl

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Marvel Heroic Roleplaying: Civil War Fifty State Initiative
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Shadowrun: 2050
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
by Nenad R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 09/25/2012 06:20:24
I remember playing a ton of Shadowrun in my youth, with the very first edition, and I really enjoy the nostalgia trip provided by Shadowrun 2050. It uses the latest version of the Shadorun rules, which is an improvement, although I fondly remember the clunkiness of the original rules... There really should be an addendum allowing characters to die by tripping over their own feet...

The book is logically laid out, with a very good overview of the setting as it was in 2050, and with a very interesting section on the various factions, and why they would use runners, which would be useful even in a more current game.

After that, magick and decking is explained, as it works in that era, with no wireless access.

Finally, there is an overview of the equipment, so that we can all use the guns that we know and love.

The book is well laid out , and very clear, with some very attractive art.

I enjoyed it for its nostalgia value, and I think it would give new players an interesting setting in which to play. A more thorough explanation of how the world and feel of 2050 is different from 2074 would have been a good addition, but other than that, this is an excellent book.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Shadowrun: 2050
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Michtim: Fluffy Adventures
Publisher: GrimOgre Laboratory
by Nenad R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 09/14/2012 02:18:21
At first, I thought that Michtim: Fluffy Adventures was a simple cutesy game, aimed at children, but on reading it, I realised that it has unexpected depths and complexities.

In the game, the players play a Bande of Michtim, intelligent hamster-like creatures (although not rodents, which is explained in an overview of their biology).

There is a firm emphasis on the culture of the Michtim, who seem to live in a very idealised, egalitarian society, and rely on the Veil to keep humans from noticing them.

The game feels a bit like a European Saturday Morning cartoon, complete with an emphasis on conservation. The characters have ratings from 1 to 4 in the various emotions: Joy, Love, Grief, Fear and Anger.

A Michtim normally belongs to one of the three hauses, each one of which places emphasis on a different Michtim virtue (although all are virtues are respected by all hauses)

In addition to that, every Michtim has at least one calling, which can be considered a bit similar to a character class, except that a Michtim can have up to three active at the same time, and can easily switch between them.
When determining the result of an action, the Michtim rolls a number of dice equal to the relevant emotion, and adds the numbers together. If she scores above 7, she gets one success. If she wants more successes, she needs to remove dice from her pool, and gets an additional success for each die she does not roll.

For each die that rolls a 6, the Michtim gets a mood token of the emotion she rolled. The token can either give a 1 to the relevant roll, or can be traded in to provide an extra die on the roll. Each emotion also has opposing ones, so a mood in a particular emotion will act as a penalty on the opposing ones. Also, a Michtim can have a maximum of three mood tokens at a time. The only way to get rid of a mood is by trading it in for a die.
I really like the mood system. It provides good roleplaying opportunities, as the Michtim find themselves in situations where they have to act according to mood, in order to get rid of the mood tokens, either because the penalty is too steep, or simply to start acquiring new ones.

The Michtim can also gain Karma, by following the Michtim virtues. If they sin against the virtues, they will find themselves unable to gain Karma, as well as the punishment from the Michtim society at large.

The Michtim society is very detailed, and the characters are made to feel to be a real part of it. Technology is not detailed at all, and in the beginning I had the impression of a pseudo-medevial level of tech, until I got to the descriptions of the cyberised Michtim. Although not detailed, the Michtim seem to have advanced technology, although with more emphasis on individual workmanship, rather than mass production.

The sample adventure at the end of the book is a bit of a letdown. It is a very good example of the genre that the game is trying to evoke, but feels very linear.

Overall, I was very pleasantly surprised by Michtim: Fluffy Adventures, and the game has a very simple and straightforward system, while providing enough depth and complexity for a very interesting game.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Michtim: Fluffy Adventures
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