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Fantasy AGE Companion $16.95
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Fantasy AGE Companion
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Fantasy AGE Companion
Publisher: Green Ronin Publishing
by Cary M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/31/2018 19:42:15

This pdf has been rigged so that if you print it the names of talents and the like do not show up on the document. I even using a print to pdf program and the names were not visible.

[1 of 5 Stars!]
Fantasy AGE Companion
Publisher: Green Ronin Publishing
by A customer [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/19/2018 09:13:56

I do not own any of the other AGE system lines, so it is a happy addition to the core book and the bestiary.

There are loads of goodies here to enhance your game and to ultimately spoil your players - these are the highlights for ME:

First: Arcana was expanded to include seven new options - for instance Death, Illusion and Spychic. Existing arcana got added spells - which was of a concern to some players. Option to add Minor Arcana (essentially a few minimal cantrips that is not tied to any particular Arcana), I really enjoy these as a story element. The second option is to add Divine magic to your game - I personally prefer my FAGE not to resemble another well known fantasy game, so I wont use this at my table, BUT this treatment of divine magic is really interesting and comes with a "Crisis of Faith" mechanic that could add interesting consequences in your game.

Second: Talents. A few new ones and guidelines how to create or re-skin existing ones, excellent ideas.

**Third**: Specialisations: A lovely number of new options that fit in perfectly with the feel of FAGE (23 in total) - my favourites being Diplomat, Gunfighter, Gangster and Razor. Oh yes and Arcane Dabbler if you want your Warrior or Rogue to have a bit of magical backup.

Fourth: Advanced Rewards: This chapter is a treat, it covers giving characters additional rewards beyond the regular level advancements: Honorifics, Titles and Memberships to organizations.

Fifth: Artefacts. These are not just magical items, they are much more. They have the ability grow with a character. Two types of artefacts are described: Tiered and Locked. Further more rules are given how to create these. This is one of my favourite chapters.

Sixth: Ways to deal with the Hitpoint bloat of FAGE, from increasing damage to decreasing hitpoints gained per level, and suffering wound penalties. I was personally hoping for an option similar to what True20 used, but these are a great starting point. Some of the options, or similar, have been dabbled at by the G+ community.

Lastly: There are a huge number of things that I skipped over - Mass Combat Rules, Realms and Organisation, Stunt Packages, Vehicle Rules etc...

Is there negative feedback? Yes, nothing is perfect. Those that own other AGE system products might feel this is redundant - As I mentioned before this product is very much for people like myself that are only interested in FAGE.

Grab it, grab it now!

[4 of 5 Stars!]
Fantasy AGE Companion
Publisher: Green Ronin Publishing
by Obreyko T. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/13/2018 22:15:06

TL;DR: The book is full of content that was printed in previous books from Green Ronin (DARPG; FAGE; Blue Rose RPG; Ashes of Valkana). More than half of the supposedly new content that players have been literally waiting years for already exists - and many of you likely own it. The content that is new ranges from mediocre and lazy, or pointless, to actually helpful. New Spells are good, a robust system for Magic Items is good, but that's literally all the worthwhile content included in this book.

This book was originally slated for release nearly two years ago. It has now finally hit store shelves! And it is a Frankenstein's Monster of a book indeed and let me tell you why.

Quite simply it's because more than half of the book simply consists of recycled mechanics from all the previous publications of the AGE RPG variants. Dragon Age RPG, Fantasy AGE, Blue Rose RPG. Fundamentally the same game - with one consistent difference being the magic system. Here's a list of some of the things that have appeared either word-for-word, or in a slightly modified form from Green Ronin's previous books in this line:

  1. Mass Combat Rules. (First appeared in Dragon Age RPG, the sample Army Sheets also use a nearly illegible cursive-style font)
  2. Divine Magic (Lifted from a standalone PDF they published some time ago)
  3. Several Specializations (Champion, Martial Artist, Pirate, Bard, Beastmaster, Diplomat, Spy, etc. - lifted from various amongst the previous three books)
  4. Honorifics and Titles (Lifted and slightly modified from Dragon Age RPG)
  5. Realms and Organizations (Lifted from Dragon Age RPG)
  6. Vehicle Combat and Chases (Various previous publications, Ashes of Valkana)
  7. "Relationship" Rules (Blue Rose RPG)
  8. Stunt "Packages" (Giving a combination of different stunts that already exist and have been reprinted several times a name does not a new mechanic make. Mashing the Disarm and Lightning Attack stunts into one and literally calling it Lightning Disarm for 5 Stunt Points is something I could've done in my lunch break.)

So what is it that you're actually getting for your 16.95$?

  1. 4 New Races and Backgrounds
  2. 15 Actually new Specializations and Talents (as underwhelming as some of them are, none can match the Pirate in their uselessness. Arrr.)
  3. New Spells and Arcana - (Many of them are redundant between the different Arcanas, or are simply FAGE versions of D&D spells. Counterspell! Finally!)
  4. Magic Items - (In depth mechanics that make magic items unique and interesting, with dramatic side-effects and powerful features. Actually kind of decent part of the book that was sorely lacking in every version of the game that preceded it.)
  5. Optional rules for making FAGE a more lethal, or less lethal system.
  6. Rules for Minions, a mechanic lifted nearly wholesale from 4th Edition Dungeons and Dragons, a game from eight years ago. Hey, it's a good mechanic - I can't blame them.

This is as extensive and as thoughtful a rundown as I care to make of what is on offer in this product. I already own more than half of the book, because I've purchased every full-price re-release of the same RPG they've been releasing of the past few years (very responsible of me, I know). That I recognize things I've already seen on skimming the table of contents, and then finding nothing new or even visibly changed about what's on offer in the actual chapters of the book itself is, to say the least, a dealbreaker.

If they took out the redundant parts of this book - people would wonder what they spent the last several years doing, I'm certain. If they did that, however, the AGE Companion would be a tiny leaflet not worth its price-tag, not that it offers much value as is. Its only saving grace would be the few mechanics that are new and well-thought out at a glance - this chiefly being the Artifacts and Magic Items. However - as it is an example of an indie publisher taking advantage of consumer good will, passing off content they've already sold before as new, exciting product - even the good things will have to get saddled with a 1/5 rating.

I cannot more strongly discourage people from buying this book on a purely ethical standpoint. It doesn't help that much of what is actually new is also underwhelming.

[1 of 5 Stars!]
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