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The Blackest of Deaths - Dire Old School Fantasy RPG (Ashcan Version)
by Austin A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/09/2021 13:38:15

Tired of fifth edition's over the top power level or need a great system for a horror one shot, then this is your game.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Blackest of Deaths - Dire Old School Fantasy RPG (Ashcan Version)
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SURVIVE THIS!! We Die Young RPG Core Rules
by Timothy B. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 10/05/2021 12:20:39

Originally Posted here: https://theotherside.timsbrannan.com/2021/10/review-survive-this-we-die-young-rpg.html

"Son, she said, have I got a little story for you

What you thought was your daddy was nothin' but a...

While you were sittin' home alone at age thirteen

Your real daddy was dyin', sorry you didn't see him,

but I'm glad we talked...

Oh I, oh, I'm still alive

Hey, I, I, oh, I'm still alive

Hey I, oh, I'm still alive."

Pearl Jam, "Alive" (1991)

It's October. There's a chill in the air and there is a feeling in the air. Something that makes me reflective, chilly, and maybe a little melancholy. Sounds like the 90s to me. There is also a game that captures this feeling perfectly. Bloat Games' newest offering in the SURVIVE THIS!! series; We Die Young RPG.

I have been waiting to share this with you all and today is that day!

We Die Young RPG Core Rules

"Tell me do you think it would be alright If I could just crash here tonight?"

We Die Young RPG Core Rules is 372 pages with color covers and black and white interior art. The book is digest-sized, so the same size as Bloat Games other games. The game was Eric Bloat & Josh Palmer with art by Phil Stone and additional art by RUNEHAMMER & Diogo Nogueira.

For this review, I am considering the just-released PDF on DriveThruRPG that I got as a Kickstarter backer. The print book is due out soon.

Comparisons between this game and their first game, Dark Places & Demogorgons are natural and I think needed. I spent a lot of time with DP&D so I am looking forward to seeing how I can use this game with that as well. But first, let's get into the game proper.

The book begins with two dedications from the authors. I want to repeat them here since they set the tone not just for the game but also for my review.

Growing up in the 1980s was fun. Being in my late teens and 20s in the 1990s however, was AMAZING. January 1990 I was a university undergrad, living in the dorms with a girlfriend that driving me crazy (not in a good way), but a best friend I hung out with all the time. December 1999 I was married to that best friend, I had a brand new baby son, living in my new house, and was working on my first Ph.D. That's no small amount of change. But I never forgot that kid in 1990 with the flannel, goatee, Doc Martins, and long hair. This is the game for that kid.
BTW "Layne" is Layne Staley, the former lead singer of Alice in Chains who died of a heroin overdose in 2002. If you can't remember EXACTLY where you were when you heard Layne, Kurt, Shannon, or Chris was dead, then this game is, to turn a quote "not for you."

Introduction

"With the lights out, it's less dangerous. Here we are now, entertain us."

Here we are introduced to the newest SURVIVE THIS!! game. The authors are upfront about their inspirations here; grunge music from the 90s and the games that were popular at the time. Having already gone through the book a few times it is a thread that weaved in overt and subtle ways, but it never feels overused, hackneyed, or clichéd. We are given some in-game background for why the Pacific Northwest is so full of supernatural strangeness and it is a fun explanation. But to quote the late, great Bard of Seatle I prefer it "always been and always be until the end." But it works well.

The basics of RPGs are covered and what you need to play. Next we get into character creation.

Character Creation

"I'll be whatever you want. The bong in this Reggae song."

Character creation follows the same process as other SURVIVE THIS!! games and by extension most Old-School games. We are told from the word go that we can add material we want from the other SURVIVE THIS!! games.

Attributes are covered which include the standard six, plus the "Survive" attribute common to all SURVIVE THIS!! games. My first thought? My Dark Places and Demogons characters have grown up and moved to Seatle.

Like the other games in this family, Hit Points start with a 2d6 and increase by 1d6 per level regardless of class or race. Combat can be quite deadly in these games for people used to the hardiness of even Old-School D&D characters.

Saving Throws are different from D&D but the same as DP&D with the edition of the Magic save. This does make porting over characters and ideas from the other games pretty easy.

Alignment covers Righteous, Law, Neutral, Anarchist, and Evil.

Races

"All I can say is that my life is pretty plain, You don't like my point of view and I'm insane."

Here we get into the really new material. We have a bunch of new races for this setting. These include shapeshifting Doppelgangers, undead Ghouls, garden variety Humans, the immortal Imperishables, the ancient undead Jari-Ka, the various Realm-Twisted Fey (my new favorite, and I am sure I dated a Twitter Fey back then), Vampires (sparkles are optional), and Were-beasts of all stripes. If you played ANY RPG in the 1990s you know what you are getting here, but still, they manage to make it feel both new and old at the same time. New, because there is new potential here and old because they feel comfortably familiar; like that old flannel in the back of your closet or those beat-up old Doc Martens.

The races are well covered and you could easily drop them into any other SURVIVE THIS!! game or even any other Old-School game. They are really quite fun and I could not help but think of what characters I wanted to make with each one. This covers about 40 pages.

This is followed by a list of occupations with their bonuses.

Classes

"This place is always such a mess. Sometimes I think I'd like to watch it burn."

We Die Young is a class/level system. There 16 classes for this game. Some look like repeats from DP&D but are not really. They are updated to this setting and older characters. We are told that classes from the other SURVIVE THIS!! games are welcome here.

Our classes include the Mystic (tattoos mages), Naturalists (potheads, I mean druids), Papal Pursuant (soldiers of God), Psions (Carrie), Revenant (Eric Draven the Crow), Riot Grrl (what it says on the tin), Rock Star, Serial Killer, Shaman (oh here are the potheads), Sickmen (homeless, as seen by Sound Garden), Street Bard, Street Fighters, Thralls (Vampire servants), Tremor Christs (psionically powered religious prophets), Warlock (steal power for otherworlds), and what I can only assume is an attempt to get a good review from me (just kidding!) the Witch.

The witch here is slightly different than the ones we find in DP&D. So there can be no end to the witchy goodness you can have by combining games.

That covers a healthy 50 pages.

Skills

"And so I wake in the morning and I step outside, And I take a deep breath and I get real high. And I scream from the top of my lungs. 'What's going on?'"

The skill system for We Die Young is the same as DP&D. Though without checking it feels a bit expanded. You get points to put into skills and there are DCs to check. Very 3e. Or more like 3e IF it had been written in 1995. So, yeah, another solid point for this game.

Magic (& Psionics)

"Show me the power child, I'd like to say. That I'm down on my knees today."

Here is one of my favorite things in a game. There is a mythos added to the system here that is rather fun (see Spellcasters & Salt) as well as rules for Rune-Tattoos. Yeah, this is the 90s alright!

Now I have to say this. If adding a witch class is trying to get me to do a good review, then these spell names are outright flirting with me. Spells called "All Apologies", "Heaven Beside You", "Black Days", "Wargasm", "Super Unknown", and "Far Behind"? Yeah. That is hitting me where I live. And that is only the very tip of the iceberg.

Magic, Spells and Psionics cover a little over 60 pages and I feel they could have kept going.

Equipment

"What did you expect to find? Was there something you left behind?"

No old-school flavored game is complete without a list of equipment. This includes common items, weapons, and even magical items. Don't fret, it's not like there is a Magic Shop there. A "Health Locker" costs $50k and that is if you can find one.

The list of drugs is really interesting and fun. Look. It was the 90s. Everybody was taking drugs.

New to this setting are the Zapatral Stones. These are the remains of a meteorite that fell to Earth and hit the Pacific Northwest and Mount Rainer in particular. They have strange power and effects depending on the size of the stone and the color.

Playing the Game

"Whatsoever I've feared has come to life. Whatsoever I've fought off became my life."

Here we get our rules for playing the We Die Young game. We get an overview of game terms, which is nice really. New rules for Curses, Exorcisms, and Madness are covered. It looks like to me they could be backported to DP&D rather easily.

There is a fair number of combat rules. Likely this has come about from the authors' experiences with their other game Vigilante City.

We also get rules for XP & Leveling Up and Critical tables.

The World of We Die Young

"I'm the Man in the Box. Buried in my shit."

This is great stuff. This is the built-in campaign setting for We Die Young set place in a mythical and magical Pacific Northwest. the TL;DR? Grunge woke supernatural creatures. Ok, I can do that. I mean it is not all that different than ShadowRun right?

The setting of the PNW/Seatle on the 90s is covered well. I had many college friends that made the trek out to Seatle after our graduations (91 to 93 mostly), so I have some idea of what was happening on the ground level. Twenty-somethings like me seemed drawn to the place by some mystic siren song. A siren song with a Boss DS-2 distortion pedal.

Various associations/groups are covered, like Jari-Ka circles, Ghoul Legacies, Vampire Lineages, were-kin groups. Like I said, if you played RPGs in the 90s you know the drill. But again they are still both "new" and "old" at the same time. Kudos to the authors for giving me something new AND invoking nostalgia at the same time.

We also get some great locations of note and some adventure seeds which include some creatures.

Bestiary

"She eyes me like a Pisces when I am weak. I've been locked inside your heart-shaped box for weeks."

This covers all the creatures you can run into. The stat blocks are similar enough to Basic-era D&D to be roughly compatible. They are 100% compatible with other SURVIVE THIS!! games, so the excellent DARK PLACES & DEMOGORGONS - The Cryptid Manual will work well with this. In fact, I highly recommend it for this.

There is a good variety of creatures. Angels, Demons, BIGFOOT! and more.

We get about 47 pages or so of monsters with stat blocks and an additional 10 pages of templates to add to monsters such as "Vampire" and "Radioactive."

Radioactive Bigfoot. I don't need a plot. I have that!

We get Adventure Hooks next. Roll a d100 and go!

The Appendix includes some Grung songs to get you into the mood. Some Seattle Grunge bands, some not-Seatle Grunge Bands, and some late 80's and 90's Alternative bands.

There is a list of movies about the era. A list of books. And finally the index and OGL.

Thoughts

"I don't mind the sun sometimes, the images it shows. I can taste you on my lips and smell you in my clothes."

Wow. What a really damn fun game!

If Dark Places & Demogorgons gave a "Stranger Things" 80s, this gives me a strange supernatural 90s.

It is exactly what I would have expected from the fine folks at Bloat Games.

My ONLY question about this setting is "Where are the UFOs and Aliens?" I mean NOTHING was bigger in the 90s than "The X-Files." I get that it is hard to cleave 90s Aliens to 90s supernatural (ask anyone that has tried to play WitchCraft AND Conspiracy X), but maybe a supplement is due out later? I would suggest grabbing DARK PLACES & DEMOGORGONS - The UFO Investigator's Handbook to add some X-Files flavored goodness to We Die Young.

Back in the early 2000s I had a game I was running, Vacation in Vancouver. It took place in the 90s and in Vancouver (naturally). These rules make me want to revive that game and see where I could take it now.

The bottom line for me is that SURVIVE THIS!! We Die Young RPG is a great game. The pdf is fantastic and I can't wait for my Kickstarter books.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
SURVIVE THIS!! We Die Young RPG Core Rules
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SURVIVE THIS!! Fantasy - Core Rules
by Bob V. G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/24/2020 23:58:00

For the past few days I have soloed my way through Snow-globe Island (for 5E/free/pay what you want). This adventure is six pages, no map, and it is for third level characters. It is very easy to change this for characters who have lower levels. The game system I used to play it was Survive This! Fantasy (RPG/197 pages). Both items are available at DriveThruRPG. These two items are for a Game Master and several players. I used four characters and I used a solo engine I have been testing out. One of the characters was a grave robber and the other three were beastmasters. All four were two feet tall minatauns. (They get along well with animals). The RPG system has an option for experience where the characters can do whatever they want for the four hour session and gain a set amount of XP. Nice. Once the characters received their quest, they were given access to the pocket dimension: a tropical island. Cool. They were able to kill pirate skeletons, make friends with an owlbear, and dig up a treasure. Things got more dangerous when they entered the cave system. The grave robber triggered a trap and he slid down to the bottom level and was trapped there for the rest of the adventure. Oh dear. Basa the Brave took up the lead position and took massive damage from the encounters that followed. The others tried to use their medical skills, but that did not work out at all. Esta made friends with a parrot and it is now her companion. So, the three of them were able to find the quest item and all four were united soon after that. They turned in the item to the quest giver hoping for a reward. Instead, they were offered a discount at the magic shop. Sigh. Give it a try!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
SURVIVE THIS!! Fantasy - Core Rules
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The Monsters are our Heroes
by Brian C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/29/2020 14:21:10

A simple, fast, fun OSR rpg where you get to play the classic monsters of cinema: vampire; invisible person; lagoon monster; Frankenstein's creation; werewolf; mummy. The old-school rules will be instantly recognizable to any tabletop players, so you won't spend hours learning a new system or wondering 'am I playing this right?' The rules are spelled out nicely, character creation is swift and fun. Some brief flavor text says that the world is our modern world, somehow overlaid with gothic trappings. It's brief enough that you can essentially go with the setting blurb as written or decide to run the monsters through your own homebrew game world.

Each monster gets its own set of powers based on its 'monster type' as well as couple of weaknesses. While the monsters are quite capable out of the gate, they're not unstoppable engines of might and destruction at Level 1. A SWAT team called out to defeat a bunch of level 1 spooky weirdos in the park would probably make short work of them. But the monsters do go up in level, getting to add to their attribute scores, luck points, hit dice and so on, becoming more formidable at each level. There are no tracking of expeirence point numbers; instead a simple metric and dice roll mechanic determines if your monster goes up a level. Again, it's very simple and modular, and GMs with their own preferred XP and level system can swap it in here with zero problems.

Along with simple, well-defined rules on how to play the game, then well-defined monster creation rules, the book goes into a brief bestiary of creatures that your player-monsters may encounter and possibly battle. If the included critters are too few for your tastes, just about any old-school creature catalog or manual can serve up all manner of new threats for your heroic monsters to confront.

This is not a deep, philosophical game on the psychological and sociological impacts of being a monster in our urban world. This is about rolling up classic Hollywood monsters as characters and letting them loose on a world that's been given the Tim Burton touch. It's a 'Saturday Morning' monster show that you'd watch in your living room with your bowl of kids cereal on the t.v. tray in front of you. Play it dead serious. Play it for laughs. Play it somewhere in between. The Monsters Are Our Heroes is eminently playable and very fun stuff. Just in time for Halloween!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Monsters are our Heroes
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Hack The RPG - Create your own Roleplaying Game!
by Peter K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/17/2020 00:33:31

The fact that it is released so freely and openly ist one of the reasons, why I like this.

It's more a framework than a complete game, but this is pointed out in the very beginning of the document and also the description on DTRPG.

The text is to the point. You have all the information you need, you get some tips here and there - a good basis to build your own setting/game from.

I enjoyed it very much!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Hack The RPG - Create your own Roleplaying Game!
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SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Adventure Pamphlet 1 - Ninja Beat 'em up!
by thorsten g. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/20/2020 06:19:52

It is basically a location with a map to beat up two types of ninjas and the boss on two pages (pamphlet = two-pager)

File off the names and you could call it "kill all the gnolls and hobgoblins in the lair - and don't forget to kill their troll chieftain"! Same OSR-hit dice.

No plot, no other encounters.

I was expecting a short scenario with some nice idea or little twist - nothing fancy. The adventure (location with ninjaswould be a better term) left me seriously underwhelmed.

If you need products like this to get a vigilante campaign going or running my advice is: Stay in the dungeon! At least you have traps, treasure and different monsters to fight there.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Adventure Pamphlet 1 - Ninja Beat 'em up!
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Creator Reply:
Thorsten, Don't forget to hit me up on Social Media and I'll get your refund expedited. Eric Bloat Bloat Games
Operation: Bughunt - A DCC RPG Supplement
by Todd S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/01/2019 21:21:37

Pretty cool little supplement. It gives you everything you'd need (besides the DCC core book) to run a military themed sci-fi campaign using the DCC system. Production values aren't the highest, and I noticed some copy/paste errors (for example, several times in the class description for Grunt, the term Mercenary was used instead). Overall, I feel I got my money's worth.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Operation: Bughunt - A DCC RPG Supplement
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DARK PLACES & DEMOGORGONS - The Cryptid Manual - An OSR Bestiary
by A customer [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/02/2019 15:03:25

I’ll begin by admitting I love cryptozoology. I mean, really love it. Cryptids—monsters that science says doesn’t exist but legend say might just—are endlessly fascinating and have found their way into several of the non-fiction books I’ve written over the years. As I result, when I learned about Bloat Games’ Cryptid’s Manual, I was instantly excited.

This ‘Monster Manual’ for Dark Places and Demogorgons clocks in at 92 pages. The stunning cover, an atmospheric depiction of chupacabra, only increased my anticipation. I couldn’t wait to crack it open and take a look!

The book begins with the Hope Excerpts, supposed excerpts from the journal of an explorer searching the Staff of Bel, an ancient artifact that was used by Sumerian priests—and later heroes of other cultures from Greece to India—to defeat monsters. With the fall of Rome in 476, the staff was claimed and then destroyed by a hairy 9-foot tall Barbarian (perhaps as Almas of Central Asia?), its pieces scattered around the globe. Our explorer seeks to find these fragments and reconstitute the staff to defeat monsters that dwell in the shadowy recesses of our world.

All right, so that out of the way, let us get to the meat of the book and check out the monsters themselves. There are 55 in total, pulled from legend and lore the world over—from skinwalkers and thunderbirds of Native American culture to the mokele-mbembe of Africa, the Mongolian death worm of Asia, and the bunyip of Australia all regions are covered. There’s a strong European and North American leaning, however, which is understandable as the average reader would be most familiar with these cryptids. From North America we get the hodag, Jersey Devil, and Sheepsquatch, while kelpies, medusa, spriggans are among those culled from European sources. We also get 8 species of hairy hominids and 5 types of extraterrestrials.

For every instantly recognizable hellhound of wendigo, we get one—mishipeshu, nain rouge, or sheckles, anyone—that is more obscure. I’ve been reading and writing about cryptozoology for years and yet there were still some surprises in store for me—nice!

A page or two is devoted to each cryptid, which comes with game stats (naturally), as well as some—admittedly brief—details on its habits or physiology, and quite often a sentence or two of flavor text in the form of brief testimony from supposed eyewitnesses. I was really impressed with the way the mechanics were used to evocatively bring the monsters to life. It would have been really easy, for example, to make the eight hairy hominids statistically identical, but instead each comes across as quite unique, accurately reflecting differing cultural views.

The beautiful artwork deserves particular praise. Creatures are often shadowy and somewhat indistinct, lacking in details. This is perfectly in keeping with the nature of the subject matter. Cryptids are elusive, fleetingly—if ever—seen, and testimony often differs enormously in specific details. Presenting the monsters this fashion means something is left to the imagination. It’s a brilliant design choice and gives the book a distinctive look.

The book then concludes by providing a number of templates that can be added to the assembled cryptids, or indeed any creature. They include giant, rabid, radioactive, were-beast (were-skunk ape from the deep bayous—cool!), vampiric (an undead, bloodsucking sheepsquatch—even cooler!), and zombie.

Conclusion

Editing is excellent and the rules not only constituent but expertly handled throughout. I couldn’t find a single flaw. The layout is a thing of artistry, the occasional blood splatter adding to the illusion you’re reading a Top Secret file that Powers are desperate to keep under wraps.

Jodie Brandt and Josh Palmer have written an awesome offering: The supplement provides endless hours of adventuring opportunity by breathing life into some of legend’s best cryptids. Each monster represents an adventure-in-waiting.

The book offers, thus, a ton of excellent fuel for creative GMs. Heck, you could play an entire campaign with just the creatures continued within. It’s an invaluable—even vital—resource for Dark Places and Demogorgons game masters.

My final verdict is an enthusiastic 5 stars. I can’t recommend it enough.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
DARK PLACES & DEMOGORGONS - The Cryptid Manual - An OSR Bestiary
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The Blackest of Deaths - Dire Old School Fantasy RPG - KS Sneak Peek
by Joe E. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/17/2019 13:40:28

Ran two sessions to compete one dungeon crawl into the Tomb of the Serpent King. We had 4 PC and 3 henchmen in the group. Due to traps we lost one henchman and in combat we lost one player character. The players changed their normal play style to really embrace thinking out how to approach or avoid combat all together since there was no XP for doing it. The focus was on getting items and money so trying to use traps to kill or catch the monster was the majority of encounter over straight up combat. When combat did happen, it was fast flavorful due to the d6 Benefit/Hindrance dice. Luck was used as a crutch in the beginning of the adventure but quickly the party realized depending on luck was going to put them in a bad situation later when they really needed. I found the rule set a nice compromise between a heavier system and Whitebox.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Blackest of Deaths - Dire Old School Fantasy RPG - KS Sneak Peek
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The Blackest of Deaths - Dire Old School Fantasy RPG - KS Sneak Peek
by Richard S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/17/2019 12:26:58

i received a PDF of this a few months ago, and instantly fell in love with its concept and game play. I reviewed it a few weeks ago, and encouraged BLOAT Games to fully develop it through a kickstater. i can't wait to get the CE BOX set.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Vigilante Hack
by Jacob H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/16/2019 20:08:20

To my shame, I still haven't run this game yet, though I've read it several times. Looks perfect for Daredevil/Punisher/Arrow style vigilante adventuring, with maybe a smidge of Dirty Harry or Death Wish.

I highly recommend doing a Google search for "Vigilante Class Hack," a fan supplement that reworks the classes into 21 different ones.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Vigilante Hack
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SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Core Rules
by Ben T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/16/2019 00:56:12

This is the class based superhero game I have always wanted in my life. This took everything cool about the vigilante hack and made it come to life with super powers. This along with Dark Places and Demogorgons is THE best OSR content I have seen. I cannot wait for the next two books!

All I can ask for is that I hope you come back and have a "Divine origin/Supernatural creature" set of classes and perhaps add even more variety to the mystic Class. Perhaps divine options? Magic systems from the world?



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Core Rules
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SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Villain's Guide
by Eric F. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/15/2019 11:00:56

Sometimes you've got to back off of something to really appreciate it such is the case of recently with Bloat Games SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City -Villain's Guide PDF. This book clocks in at three hundred pages of OSR super villain goodness so in other words this is the Dungeon Master's Guide for the SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City Rpg. This is the DM tool kit book for the SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City Rpg. And it does a solid job of providing the dungeon master everything they need to build up their own unstable society on the edge of collapse. This book gives you all of the tools to torture your player's super heroes in a customized setting. The DM is given a selection of villain-based Adventure Seeds that they can blossom into full adventures, easy random NPC and Villain Generation Tables, along with the Mutant Island Adventure/optional setting. The SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Villain’s Guide is designed to mimic the X-men, Spider-man and TMNT cartoons of the 1990's & in that sense it succeeds because it takes the D20 Modern roots of its OGL to its barest of bones. Then it works all of its tools around the entire book to give you as the DM an actual usable set of tools to construct the campaign that you want. The SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Villain’s Guide is the perfect compliment book for the SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City Rpg. The SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Villain’s Guide supports & expands the dungeon master's options at the table top level for constructing a super hero campaign setting that they want & it does it well. Given the tools & systems that are available with the SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Villain’s Guide I would use the Mutant Island Adventure/optional setting that's in the book & expand upon it by back dovetailing into the Dark Places & Demogorgons rpg with a UFO twist or two. The DARK PLACES & DEMOGORGONS - The UFO Investigator's Handbook

has some very need parts & pieces that hook right up with the Villain's Guide Mutant Island setting allowing the DM to connect the two game systems & settings with an extraterrestrial twist. Could the Greys or whatever aliens your using be turning the heroes back yard city into a test bed for their latest experiments?! Is there more behind the recent kid disappearances in the hero's home town or city? Could those super powered children that have been wrecking havoc be the product of aliens using your city or Earth as weapons testing facility? The SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Villain’s Guide has all of the tools at hand to make this happen & think is well worth the price of admission & its the perfect compliment to the SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City Rpg. Really think that Bloat Games has a winner on their hands & that the SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Villain’s Guide is worth your time & money.

Eric Fabiaschi Swords & Stitchery Blog Want more OSR original content? Subscribe to https://swordsandstitchery.blogspot.com/



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Villain's Guide
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SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Core Rules
by Eric F. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/14/2019 09:41:28

So I've been a Pulp & supers guy for a very long time. I've played em all & changed systems more times then 'Supes' has done the quick change in a phone book.. Then I recently saw Tim Brannan's post on his blog about Bloat Games SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Core Rules & Villain's Guide PDFs Kickstarter I'm not going to lie I didn't even know this was an OSR event. But after reading through Tim's blog entry I approached Eric Bloat for a copy of the preorder rules.

I've been scanning through it like a demon & it looks like alot of fun. I'm familiar with many of the Swords & Wizardry style concepts here. Many of the classes I've seen before in D20 Modern OGL but here give a far more cohesive whole over the system. This is a complete OSR style super hero gaming system end of story. You don't need anything else to play this with. There is a lot of crunch here allowing a player to go for Humans, Mutant Animals, Borg Conversion and Power Armor, Magic, Mutant Abilities, Psionics, Speedsters and Super Soldier Drugs. There are rules for , Background/Origins, Weapons, Equipment, Gadgets, Vehicle Upgrades, Vehicle Combat, Ranged & Melee Combat, Morale, Skills, Usage Die & more immersive play style. But this is all done from an OSR platform & outta of the box play.This book clocks in at 292 pages of actual playable content & that's where things break into context. This book is done very well & the lay out is easy on these old eyes. The column count is done professionally & so its easy to read. Characters straight out of the gate are going to kick ass. But the first thing I've thought of is SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Core Rules & Villain's Guide going to be cross compatible with the In Dark Places & Demogorgons rpg?! Why? Because kids are some of the most underutilized resources in super hero rpgs. That's right I know that they get constantly used in comicbooks & possibly the new Shazam film. But the truth is that In Dark Places & Demogorons is the perfect opportunity to introduce kid heroes & a possible origin point for new supers. This is where SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Core Rules shine because they give the DM the tools to make their campaigns happen. Because of the PC customization option given by the system there's all kinds of options on the table top level for adventure gaming. There are some solid options that the system provides & street level adventuring is what this game excels at. Do I think that SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City, succeeds as a street-level, & gritty superhero game set in the near future? In a word oh yes! I'll be covering even more of this system & diving deep into the SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City Villain's Guide From Bloat Games next! Eric Fabiaschi Swords & Stitchery Blog Want even more OSR content? Subscribe to https://swordsandstitchery.blogspot.com



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
SURVIVE THIS!! Vigilante City - Core Rules
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DARK PLACES & DEMOGORGONS - The Cryptid Manual - An OSR Bestiary
by Timothy B. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 02/24/2019 16:35:09

If I have said it once I have said it a hundred times. I LOVE Monster books. Any and all monster books. I even grab monster books for games I don't play. So when Eric Bloat they head monster hunter at Bloat Games asked if I would be interested in looking over his new monster book (Kickstarting today) for his FANTASTIC Dark Places & Demogorgons I screamed HELL YES at my computer.

Now I promise to be fair here but a couple of words of full disclaimer. First I was sent this book as part of an agreement for a review. That is no big, I get a lot of books this way and I always try to be fair. Secondly. Well, look above. I am predisposed to like Monster books and I already love DP&P and cryptids are a TON of fun. So please keep all this in mind.

Dark Places & Demogorgons: Cryptid Manual is a digest-sized book weighing in at 90 or so pages. Some bits look like redacted Governmental documents and blood splattered hunter's notebooks. It's actually pretty cool looking if not 100% original (see Chill, Supernatural and Conspiracy X). That being said though it is also 100% EXPECTED. That's HOW I want my 80s monster hunting guide to look like.

The interior and the cover features two-color art (blacks and reds) on glossy pages. Now the gloss might just be my pre-copy version, or not. In any case the color, the art, and the layout are all a leap ahead in terms of style and look than all the previous DP&D books. If this is the future of their books then the future looks good.

A little over 50 monsters fill this book. They use the same stat block as DP&D so that also means they are roughly compatible with Swords & Wizardry (I'd say about 99%) and most other OSR-flavored games. Given the size of the book it fits in nicely with my Swords & Wizardry Whitebox games, so I have another monster book now for that! Each monster gets a page. Some exceptions occur with the Bigfoots and the E.T.s, but still, it's a good bit for each one.

There are also templates in the back of the book that work like the monster templates from 3.x. So you can apply the Vampire, Werewolf or my favorite Radioactive, template (among others) to any monster. Radioactive Bigfoots? Hell yes! There is also a table of enhancements and how they change your monster. So now it's Agile Radioactive Bigfoots! There are some conditions ported over from 3.x (more or less) but very, very useful and I am happy to see them here.

Ok what are some of my favorites? There is the Almasti, which I also used in Ghosts of Albion. They have a special place in my heart. I'll likely include Almasti Shamen in my DP&D games like I did with Ghosts. Old faves like the Bunyip and Chupacabra. Holy crap there is a Crocoduck!

I have to admit I nearly shot coffee out of my nose when I first saw that. Worth the price of the book alone in my mind. Flatwoods Monster, all the various extraterrestrials (Nordics, Reptilians, LGMs, Greys), Hellhounds, the Hodag! (love those things!), Jersey Devils, Skin Walkers, and the Wendigo. So plenty really and many more. The monsters mostly come from modern cyptids, but there some classics from myths and local monsters.

This book is great really. While I may have been pre-disposed to like it, it really delivered and then some with me. The art is great and fun. The layout top notch and the monsters are just too much fun.

While reading it I could not help but think how well this would also work with White Star or other White Box derived game. So even if you don't play DP&D (and you should really, it's just too much fun) you can still get a lot of enjoyment out of this book. For example the Cryptid Manual is 90% compatible with Swords & Wizardry White Box. There is not a lot of overlap in monsters, so this makes the CM a perfect monster book for S&WWB players. Also, there are a lot of "new" monsters in S&W for the DP&D player/GM. Who's to say that an alien life form could resemble an orc or a wyvern.

In fact, this is true for nearly every clone. The clone game provides monsters for DP&P and the Cryptid Manual provides new monsters for your clone of choice. You just need to justify why they are there.

Worth picking up.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
DARK PLACES & DEMOGORGONS - The Cryptid Manual - An OSR Bestiary
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