May 152014

Valiant-RPG-Digital-Initiative-Covers_Unity500 Have you seen the new quick start rules for Valiant Universe RPG? I have. They made me reminisce on some of my early RPG days. In high school we role-played like it was our life. I can’t tell you how much D&D we played. We also played Marvel Super Heroes, Rifts, and even a little bit of DC mingled its way in. We had countless night where we would sneak out of our respective houses and meet up to play in a tent. Yes, I said a tent. Which didn’t do so well in the winter, but we managed to find a barn. There wasn’t any heat at first but we made it work.

I was and I still am very fond of the Marvel Super Heroes Game. It was the first RPG that expanded my vision of what RPG’s could encompass. The game also had a unique flair to it with karma and and power shifts. Valiant is going to be a game that does that same exact thing. Catalyst has introduced some very unique concepts that might just influence the future of story telling games. Two of these are the cue system and the introduction of a lead narrator, at least I have never seen it before.

The Cue system in a nutshell is this; character definition. On each character sheet there is a series of sentences that depict the characters personality. Some of these reflect the hidden identity of the character while others display attitude of the hero, and some exemplify the approach taken in combat. Basically, they are a guideline to influence the players decision making while attempting to stay in character.

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Shadowrun 5th ed Review

 Catalyst Game Labs, Featured, RPG System Review  Comments Off on Shadowrun 5th ed Review
Aug 052013



Shadowrun (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

So the gang at Catalyst has redesigned Shadowrun and released 5th edition. We managed to get our hands on a PDF copy to look at. But before we get into this review I have to let you know that this is a re-visitation for me of the Shadowrun world. I haven’t played SR since about 1986. I have dabbled with a little bit of the fiction here and there, and I even picked up an almanac or two for reference material. With that being said I asked the powers that be (Jason Hardy) a lot of questions about the changes. I even purchased the 4th ed book as reference material. So you’re going to get the impression of an individual who took a crash course on the two game systems. It’s my hope that you can see how simple the system is.


With all of the above taken into consideration let’s dive right in. The very first thing I noticed was that the table of contents is huge – five pages. Before going any further I jumped right to the back of the book to see if there was an index; my favorite tool in most gaming books. Along the way I discovered an intricate bookmark system built into the PDF. Needless to say I found the layout of the book to be impeccable. The book is riddled with tables that make it easier to use. Did I mention this book is huge!


The art is not quite what I expected. Don’t get me wrong it tells the visual story of Shadowrun very well. I was just expecting something a little darker. I will admit I want prints of every night city scape they have in the book. There is something very alluring about the light pollution.

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Mistborn Review

 RPG Book Reviews, RPG System Review  Comments Off on Mistborn Review
Jul 212012
Crafty Games Logo

Crafty Games Logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Mistborn is an RPG set in the fantasy steampunk setting created by Brandon Sanderson. Before getting too in depth with the review I must give Brandon two thumbs up on his involvement in the process of creating the game. He not only authors the introduction story, he makes comments throughout the book.


The book itself is large, 500 pages. It is really three books in one. It is well organized and follows a sensible direction for teaching you how to play the game. I did find myself wishing there was more art. The book opens with a short story. The short story does an excellent job of immersing you into this game world. Sharing with you some of the basic concepts, like how this world is different, and allomancy. Allomancy is “metal magic” or one’s ability to weave, control or manipulate the powers and effects a metal obtains.

The world of Mistborn is a world trapped in an industrial revolution. The government is a fascist one that basically makes you conform or die. A few people (your character maybe) take on roles of thieves and bandits. By skirting the law they are easily seen as rebels, and heroes.

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Apr 062012

Why, o why must the internets conspire against me?!

Okay, the lamenting may be a bit much.  In truth, the fault is mine.  I deleted a very important e-mail from Matt, resulting in a series of miscommunications between he and I, and therefore this post is getting up rather late.  My most sincere and humble appologies.  Nonetheless, here it is, a quick overview of the mechanics of the Silvervine Games system.


Silvervine Primer

This should give you the background information as you follow along with the campaign audio podcasts.

Also, here are the important links once again:

Silvervine Games Quick Character Creation Guide:

Silvervine Games Fillable PDF Character Sheet:

Silvervine main website:


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