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Olympian Breed: Act One $2.99
Publisher: Palewolf Publishing
by David H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/05/2012 19:59:14
Disclaimer: The publisher contacted me directly to review their products, providing a complimentary copy.

1 Cover, 1 blank page (really? Why is page 7 blank of all text?), 5 pages of text. 7 pages total.

As are all Olympian Breed products, designed for Savage Worlds Explorer's Edition and the Super Powers Companion.

This is a good adventure set-up with some back-story at the beginning. This story provides information for the GM and can be used as a guide for what the PCs know about the state of affairs.
Summary: There's a big party to announce a royal engagement. Demonic party crashers arrive, kidnap the royal ladies, and try to slaughter some guests - time to be a hero. In the aftermath, a royal summons give the heroes an interview with an Oracle, who tells them where to go to rescue the ladies. The king promptly gives them a boat and a crew. Curtain Call.

Short, simple, and classic. If used in the same session as character creation, I can see this being a full night. However, on its own this Act should last about one hour. You could add another hour or two of interactions before and after the combat, but Savage Worlds combats are pretty short. Between the (heavily scripted) fight and the various interactions, this is a pretty slim "adventure".
Interestingly, the combat is against a bunch of creatures built with the core monster rules instead of the super power rules - they're good foes, and fine for a normal group of heroes, but might be too easy for the demigods that Olympian Breed focuses on.

Oddly, I wasn't sure when to "stop reading boxed text" and "roll initiative" (this is Savage Worlds, but Deal Initiative doesn't have quite the same impact). The writing flows so smoothly between the two that I wasn't sure, until afterwards, if I was supposed to run a combat or just tell the players that "Plot Happens". For the overall story, the player's actions in the combat don't matter - you can make them matter (and should) via NPCs rescued and the reactions of characters in the aftermath, but for the purposes of the story the entire fight scene could just be descriptive text.

Again, the graphics are grayscale (excluding the cover and one small map) and images are few, but skillful and useful.
Layers, for printing, would have been a nice addition. The parchment-effect background is attractive and evocative but will eat up some print cartridges.

Stats:
NPC stats are a bit buggy. The author leaves a lot of modifiers off of derived attributes (Parry scores ingoring edges and gear; Toughness that doesn't include armor), uses the wrong values for setting-equipment (the shield is supposed to be a +2 parry, but is repeatedly listed as +1), and everything has high Traits (d8s are typical, with a couple of d10s and only a handful of d6s). Which means that things will be interesting for the PCs when they have to throw down. Not unbeatable, especially for Demigods, but interesting.


Overall: 3.7
Good production values and nicely thought out; a solid first act. I'm genuinely curious to see where the story goes and what cool things the authors do with this.
However, this is basically just an opening couple of scenes, not a full adventure. I've seen more gaming packed into the free One Sheet Adventures on the Pinnacle website (www.peginc.com), or some of the fan-made freebies on their forums.
This product is nice, but not worth the $5 price, which is a shame because I enjoyed it enough to want to recommend buying it.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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Olympian Breed: Act One
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