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Modern AGE RPG Quickstart
by Jay G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/05/2021 17:26:36

If the goal of a free set of quickstart rules is to get you to purchase the full edition than this set is Mission Accomplished!

Basically as soon as I was done reading this I purchased the full rulebook and Feral Hogs scenario and my group was off to the races.

The Modern AGE rules themselves are fairly simple and straightforward and my group was able to pick them up immediately with very little learning curve. I've only run one adventure using these rules so far but my whole group's immediate response was "when can we play again?" so that's the most reliable metric I have to indicate a gme is good.

For $0 if you're interested in a modern RPG that anyone can play and learn you can't afford not to get this.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Modern AGE RPG Quickstart
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Blue Rose Quickstart (Free PDF)
by Bob V. G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/02/2020 14:42:28

A few days ago I soloed my way through the fourteen page adventure included in this quickstart. To solo it, I used One Page Solo Engine which is also free at DriveThruRPG. All of the adventuring takes place outdoors. The only time the characters were inside was when they spent the night in a cabin, once going towards their destination, and then again on their way back. Most of the adventure was relaxing, except for the big battle towards the end. This is a linear adventure, but it was designed for beginner players to show them the different “pieces” of an adventure. There are several characters provided. I used six of them. My favorite was the Rhy-Badger. All of my characters survived. Give this a try!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Blue Rose Quickstart (Free PDF)
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Modern AGE Missions: Feral Hogs
by Jay G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/19/2020 00:40:03

Fantastic adventure! If you want a fun post-apocalyptic advnture that doesn't take itself too seriously this is just perfect.

Just ran it for my group and pitched it as Idiocracy meets Mad Max, played it as such and everybody had a blast!

The adventure is a great intro to the Age system as there is; social interactions, combat, breeching challenges, and a chase.

Highly recommend!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Modern AGE Missions: Feral Hogs
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Villainous Lairs: Amusement Park
by JD S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/11/2020 07:18:49

Very over-priced for a extremely simplistic map and a couple pages of description. Wouldn't recommend unless on sale.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Villainous Lairs: Amusement Park
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The Expanse: Salvage Op
by Eric B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/31/2020 16:31:33

Had this run for me as a player and had a lot of fun. Great way to get a good feel for the game and experience a number of its systems. It felt very setting-appropriate. Hoping to run it soon for others as well.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Expanse: Salvage Op
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Tales of Freeport: Dark Currents
by Heath W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/31/2020 00:51:53

These are a wonderful collection of short stories. Short in length but long in inagination. The capture the diverse wonder of Freeport extreemly well. for a compelation I was suprised that there was no weak link. Sure some sang to me more than others but none were regretful. I'd love to see some of these characters and stories expanded into full novels.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Tales of Freeport: Dark Currents
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Death in Freeport 20th Anniversary Edition (Fantasy AGE)
by Marc C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/27/2020 12:23:51

Overall an intersting urban adventure. I would like to see the other chapters of the story translated to the AGE system.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Death in Freeport 20th Anniversary Edition (Fantasy AGE)
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Dragon Age: Blood in Ferelden
by Andrew B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/29/2020 11:39:19

This is a great collection of pregenerated adventures for use with the Dragon Age RPG. It also includes a number of adventure prompts that gamemasters can flesh out into further adventures. If you like the RPG, this book gives great options no matter what type of game your players like. Just be aware that the title is "Blood in FERELDEN". No Orlesian Court intrigues here (unless you want to add your own tie-ins).



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Dragon Age: Blood in Ferelden
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The Expanse Roleplaying Game
by Audun L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/28/2020 07:26:42

So. First off. The 5 stars is because, despite some limitations (I'll touch on them as we go through this structured stream of consciousness), this game is - I'll say it now - the best version of the AGE engine I've read so far (yet the only one I've gamemastered) and as close to what I believe is possible to a representation of the Expanse book-universe (keep your canon-pants on) that we could get. There may be "better" systems out there, whatever that means in your book, but the design-fit here is nigh on perfect. One of the reasons I think so is because the the authors of the book series were involved in the design of the game (they are also roleplayers/gamers), the results of that, and how the inner workings of the AGE system are designed. So, at least by intent it is nigh on perfect, in execution (i.e. actual play) experiences will probably vary.

So, take a gander about the shop and consider other systems that could work well with this storyverse, I believe 2d20 by Modiphius could work well (somewhere between Conan/Infinity and John Carter. More crunchy than Dishonoured, but less cumbersome and fiddly than Infinity). Another system that could work is Genesys, however I believe that Genesys would perhaps take too much away from the feel of the universe and replace it with the game engine's premises of how to play the game. Still, both those system families could also quite well do what would be needed to represent the Expanse universe (Genesys would need some far better vehicle rules though).

AGE mixes something akin to the predictability and rigid framework of 5E with elements from Genesys/Star Wars and Coriolis (and 2d20). We see this primarily in that it is a pass/fail system, with levels, and level-dependent benefits (5E), the Churn mechanic (Darkness points and Doom), but also in how Fortune (renamed HP) is described and represented in the game (working similarly to Strain in Genesys/Star Wars), and of course the famous Stunt Points (SP) that is reminiscent of Advantages in Genesys/Star Wars by FFG/Edge Studio.

There was some excitement about the Churn mechanic from the designers. This GM mechanic tracks increases in potential small, big, and major interruptions into the story and narrative, bases on the successes and luck of the players. Roll well? Well, Churn increases. When the Churn tracker reaches a certain threshold, something bad happens (most likely), in increasing order of magnitude. The book here is somewhat confusing, particularly as it pertains to action encounters and the specifics of the Churn tracker, and the points that make up the Churn. At first glance it seems that it is only at certain thresholds that bad stuff can happen due to the Churn. However, when it comes to running out of ammo and jamming weapons, the rules also states that the GM can "spend Churn points" to cause this effect (hence my reference to Doom and Darkness points above). The rules are therefore somewhat ambiguous in this area. Personally, I’d suggest using them as Darkness points for smaller and personal effects, and use the threshold (10, 20, and 30 points) as group-related effects. The game also runs quite well without this mechanic, but it is also a good way for the GM to let go of control and let the story take twists and turns that are not pre-planned and scripted.

Fortune is aptly named. While you could make the short-sighted argument that “it is still hit points”, this would be to ignore the intent and the feel that this design change promotes and can create in players. Particularly with how Fortune points (FP) can be spent on dice rolls, and the necessarily attached Conditions mechanic that makes the characters in Expanse so at risk and fragile. Sure, FP is still reduced by weapon “hits” (i.e. the dice roll beats your Defence), but you can also spend the FP to improve your dice rolls. FP cannot be “healed” because it is (by definition) not real damage. There are however several ways of regaining FP during play (by spending SP and some talents), but first aid is pointless, you cannot “fix” someone’s fortune. Furthermore, some good attack rolls producing enough SP can injure, even wound (and ultimately kill) a character that still has most of their FP left. This is an elegant way of solving the issue several games have with the disconnect between hit points and critical injuries. It is, in my own not-so-humble-opinion, far superior to Modern and Fantasy AGE’s reliance on hit points. Also, conditions cannot easily be fixed during encounters, but require Interludes and doctors (live or inanimate ones) – there are however ways to ignore or postpone the negative effects (drugs for instance).

The SP system is a great addition to a pass/fail system, it is however missing the feature that is so great in Genesys/Star Wars; the fail that has positive side-effects. This is sorely missed. Also, the stunt lists are long, and the rules don’t go far enough to promote and recommend players and GMs coming up with their own stunts. As it stands, the stunt lists looks more like a shopping list you are bound to choose from, rather than making up your own. While it is good with example stunts, there is a big hole where the basic idea of what kind of effects 1 SP can cause, what effects you can “buy” for 2 SP, or 4 SP – as is present in Genesys/Star Wars when it comes to spending Advantages. This can severely limit the enjoyment of the game for more experienced gamers (if not the most veteran of us), but I can understand the desire to have a plethora of choice, if not for the newest players, then for the slightly more experienced ones. The notion of Favoured Stunts should be emphasised more strongly.

Character creation in this game is easy, and a somewhat smaller sibling of the 2d20 Life Path system. Luckily, there are no classes, only where you are from (so there is social class) and what you do/did for a living (profession). It is straight forward and gives you ample options for customisation. It also creates a fleshed-out character with a background and profession that will inspire a player to create a character in the Expanse universe. It is one of the parts I love, reminding me of Conan by Modiphius in the best of ways.

Sore teeth in the book are the Equipment and Starship chapters. The equipment chapter has a lot of fluff but is severely limited on crunch. Everything you need is there, but example weapons and armour, and other gear like drugs and medicine, is absent. The descriptions get idea of the intent across (i.e. customisation), but more examples would be great and severely improve the accessibility for new players and GMs (cybernetics and implants are also absent). The starship chapter is, on the surface, awesome. However, the system for travel and combat is condensed – and combat is, according collective wisdom missing in effectiveness, group involvement, and excitement. This last will soon (hopefully) be remedied with a new Starship book coming out, but the vanilla system will for mangy groups probably relegate starships (like in so many sci-fi and space opera games) to be a short Interlude (a nice mechanic, similar to the Fellowship phase in The One Ring) on the way to some asteroid, station, moon or planet.

When it comes to setting information, there is an assumption that the GM at least has read at least some of the novels. Still, there is a lot of information about the solar system and the various factions, we also know that the authors of the books wrote extra entries and sections for this. So, what is there, is what is known (in addition to the novels and novellas). It may be short and limited in some people’s eyes, but as a GM who loves making settings my own, this kind of open-ended writing and design is liberating and a generative. It frees me from having to stick to strict timelines and canon, to read up on specifics and avoid paradoxes and the existence of certain characters. The rulebook also covers this well enough; the choice between sticking to canon and what canon “means”. The Gamermaster chapter also has a lot of input on how to design a campaign (or series), but I'll admit that I have not read that particulalry closely, it seems (on the surface) to be similar to most of these chapters in other games, a primer for new gamermasters.

The included adventure is fun and gets you into the Expanse feel, investigation, mystery, and action - my group spent some time running through it as they are prone to distractions, but it creates a healthy scepticism in the players when it comes to entering combat and how to approach a potential dangerous and lethal situation (much needed in the Expanse). There are some discrepancies between the map and the descriptions, but this is easily overcome with some creativity.

To round up this long blurb. For a pass/fail system, Expanse (and by relation AGE) is a great narrative system which asks the GM and players to adjust their perspective on how games are structured and played in a very accessible and friendly way. It promotes cinematic and dramatic playstyles, with a lethal undertone that is certainly very suitable for a setting such as The Expanse. It is a simple system, with focus on action and the momentum players cause (and the side-effects), not in specific skill ranks and specialisations. It has an eye for detail, while keeping other aspects sweeping and general.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Expanse Roleplaying Game
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The Expanse: Salvage Op
by Florent C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/10/2020 14:46:26

Great mission, perfect as a 'first session' or gap-filler in any campaign.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Expanse: Salvage Op
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Abzu's Bounty
by Florent C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/10/2020 14:44:53

Excellent campaign, very neatly written and easy to use - despite the size i would definitively recommend to beginning GMs. It captures the essence of the Expanse and takes the player group onto an arc that is not 'spoiled' by the TV series or books.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Abzu's Bounty
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Foes: Undead
by Seth W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/19/2020 23:43:51

Know what's scarrier than wights? Stuff in this book.

Buy it. Terrify your players. Have a good time.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Foes: Undead
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House of Orphans
by Seth W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/19/2020 16:22:44

Cool couple of Elven houses to drop into any setting, along with hooks and drama to get players involved.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
House of Orphans
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Sword Chronicle - Feudal Fantasy Roleplaying
by Seth W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/18/2020 14:52:43

I'm really happy to see this game re-released with more support for the fantasy elements that make RPGs a fun escape. I always enjoyed the system, and the polish on intrigue, warfare, combat, and magic makes it even better. Plus, the House system gives a great foundation for players to have a common goal or org.

I'm off to build a House that can take over the world in my homebrew setting!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Sword Chronicle - Feudal Fantasy Roleplaying
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Danger Zones: Bank
by Martin R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/13/2020 07:41:27

Considering that this product has no useable maps for VTT, which was the reason I bought it, and what was implied by the description and the cover, this product is an unfortunate disappointment. At the very least, some image files of the bank map itself would have been expected.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Danger Zones: Bank
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