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Tachyon Squadron $12.00
Publisher: Evil Hat Productions, LLC
by Dillard R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/16/2018 23:59:46

BLUF: It is a good supplement. Not exceptional. Space Opera/Military Sci-Fi mash-up...maybe.

Good. You can always use a scyfy military game. I loved BSG and Space Above and Beyond so this is right up my alley. I love Military Sci-Fi, such as the Fleet series. The tropes put forward in this title are to be expected based on the bibliography in the back of the book.

I like the new mechanics presented in this book. They include a new engagement process to conflict for Dogfighting that I really like. It puts tactics in there as more than a place holder. I used to read all the stories of fighter combat in WWI, WWII, and Korean War. This is faithful and not complicated, and really captures the excitement of aerial combat. (It even has a copy of Boelke's Dicta!) Stress for PCs is handled differently. For those familiar with Fate you will immediatly recognize the simplified use of the stress track common to NPCs in the regular game. (I don't think the change was necessary as someone that has played Fate for years now) Character creation supports building PCs that are aerial gunslingers. You can almost feel the swagger. As for Aspects the new addition to the mix is "Decompression" it takes the place of a Trouble. You have a healthy and an unhealthy way to decompress from the stress of being a fighter pilot. Of course these provide you with great plot hooks. You have a different way to approach Stunts. You have familiar Personal Stunts (2 free the rest cost refresh) and Gear Stunts which are not like Extras! Gear stunts allow you to "Maximize" your dice. Say you have a peice of gear that gives you technical advice when you roll 4dF you can change one of the dice from a 0 or - to a +. You can do this for a max of two dice per roll using two different pieces of gear. I love this mechanic. It is crunchier than normal and makes gear helpful but not overpowering. (You can have as many pieces of gear as the GM allows)

Not so good. I miss the Tazio Bettin and Enrica Eren Angiolini art that came with the old Fate books. This is of course a personal observation. To me the art in this book is simplistic and a bit muddled. I don't feel that there is the art that evokes the look and feel of a fighter or spaceship. The nose art on fighters is a thing in the campaign.It is mentioned specifically but the examples shown just seem way out of touch with real nose art. There are a plethora of examples of real nose art (and fanciful nose art) on the interwebs use that (and it makes me wonder if the artist even tried to do the same). I am also disappointed in the choice to use bizarre personal pronouns. Referring to an individual as "they" in character descriptions is disruptive to the reader. I lost count of the number of paragraphs I had to reread b/c someone couldn't just say him/he/her/she. I also find it disconcerting that the authors thought it was necessary to add in the sexual orientations and attitudes of the pregen PCs. Of the 6 PCs we have two people who are gay, one transgendered, one asexual (?!?), one that sleeps around so much they don't recognize past partners, and finally one that used to have a partner of the opposite sex (but not anymore). Not one happily married heterosexual? Why? I don't know! We also have two religions represented, Islam and Hindu. Where are the Buddists and the Christians? If you have political correctness tendencies please keep them to yourself. This is a game. Not your soap box. This isn't the first time I have disagreed with a personal ideology being given prominent place in an Evil Hat product. We have enough division over sexuality, political ideology, and religion in this world we don't need more in the gaming community. Rein it in. Please make games, not statements.

If you don't mind (or approve of) political correctness with you games and you love Space Opera space combat you will love this unabashedly. If you don't want to have someone pushing their ideology on you, you will need to ignore the political correctness schtick to get at the meat of the game. For me this is an acceptable attempt at a Space Opera game. It also captures the excitement and panache of aerial combat without ignoring the tactical side. Without the PC stuff I'd have given this 5 stars.

If I were sitting at a table with friends I would "x-card" these topics.

EDIT: You are part of the Draconis Volunteer Group or DVG. Given the situation and the obvious similarities I am very surprised that the history of the American Volunteer Group (AVG) or Flying Tigers isn't mentioned at all.

[3 of 5 Stars!]
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Tachyon Squadron
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