Saturday, 15 August 2020

Reviews Again

Possibly I wrote lots of game stuff out of being cheapskate unwilling to spend money. 

Mostly working on 2 books offline while watching excellent Tripods S1 and S2
Im updating my Current Patreon Project today to 30 pages on my Broken Hill book
Im sourcing a artist for a mock up cover art fro a Norman Linsey meets Mad Max meets 2000AD grunge vibe.

A few Interesting pics today....

The Lost City
vol 4 of goodman games reimagined classics hardbacks.
One of my fave adventures I have never run. This book is the best out of the four so far (followed by 2 then 1 then 3). Lots of art and one item of pole dancing goblins probably one of the biggest surprises in a book I've ever had. Only one reprint of the adventure which is a help. It totally ignores the amazing fan-made companion which goes into the Alexander the Great themes and one web page had awesome addictive drugs for a setting like addictive cheap healing potions better than the "Fantasy" drug in this book. Other than those issues it is the best yet with lots of new dungeon areas like a huge goblin complex and the city detailed and lots of other good extras with great maps. It doesn't feel like a BX 1-3 level adventure anymore in the 5th ed revision but it is pretty nice. One beef I have with this series is new monsters lack any lore or text just stat blocks which I find sad as almost everyone has space and someone could have done this in a few hours. I'm pretty happy with is and hope more like this. Vol one had 2 modules reprinted twice but expanded the wilderness nicely. Vol 2 added extra encounters and really nice Willian McAustland art which I enjoy and vol 4 repeats it. Vol 3 improved the story a bit then ads expanded campaign predicated on new monsters with no illustrations and more monster stat blocks lacking inspiration but i guess S3 was flawed even if fun once. Interestingly I ran S3 last after ASE 1-2-3 and the gonzo genre-bending didn't stand up. Looking forward to vol 5

Bug Hunters TSR 1993 by Lester Smith
This has the gold TSR logo lozenge of the 90s, a time I gave up TSR and DND for being lame. Poorer art, pay per word, people younger and dumber than me writing stuff (complete necromancers guide was the product that made me quit TSR). So this is for the Amazing engine. It Is a marine-based SF game where you are lab-grown troops hunting aliens. The map is great Hard SF sphere around earth as good as the 2300 map but more manageable area. Starship troopers and Aliens is the vibe. Some good points are the modular ship blueprints, some ok equipment that still seems relevant decades later and the best part is the background. It is pretty cheap second hand and some ways the alien back story might fit in with Eclipse Phase or could be used in other SF campaigns. Two ancient races fought a war one used biotech (blobs and the thing and nasty critters) vs the tech race that build robots, replicants, killer drones. I like you could end humanity by shooting new aliens first which can start wars and prevent humans getting allies. The ancients are mostly gone but left traps and monster bioweapons around. Some ex thrall races exist also which could be friend or foe. It does set my imagination off so I commend it for that. Not a lot of art and workman like layouts of this era TSR.

Bug Hunts - Mark Latham Osprey Books 2015
This is more recent and builds a setting very aliens/starship troopers based and sets up a bunch of horrible colony destroying monster species to fight. If your bored with Alien this will give well resolved alternate critters. Would work well with the old TSR Bughunters book. Like all Osprey books the art is very good. Check out cthulhu wars and cthulhu rome books too. I am tempted to get the (non rpg) Alien Marine handbook full of good tech art. The species in here could be in lots of space RPGs. As I said a mash of this and the TSR one would work fine.

High Adventure Cliff Hangers Buck Rogers War Against The Hun
Ive seen a novel of Buck Rogers with warnings for dodginess I cant imagine has got better. Which is pretty fair. I like decopunk SF but this is a real oddity (and was cheap). I might grab the main box if i see around but it seems to be let's try and save our Buck Rogers IP without any advertising or interest from fans so we can own it 75 years more or something. Paper is really thin and the books feel like comics almost. The Mike Pondsmith Buck Rogers IP was a good game with imaginative Ideas that influence me still. The big flaw like lots of TSR things in this time was the interior illustrations seemed workmanlike and not very exiting vs 80s content. So beautiful covers an approximate average inside. This book has like Bughunters has a mostly workmanlike layout and even though they used original Buck comic art was a bit thin. The portrayal of Asians is like pantomime Chinese from 1900 AliBaba plays. The second book in the box has a better layout and has colour printed spot colour on page edges. I hope this was when spot colour was cheaper cos if it was full-colour printing I would be upset. Some of the chapter layouts and presentation of info inboxes is better designed. Well, I did learn more about the setting but I will put this product under the oddities collection. Sadly TSR/SI would have made a good SF or Pulp Game - the Agent 13 book is a superior product 

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