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Modern Floorplans: An Average Wild West Town

From: Fabled Environments

Reviewed by: Ron McClung

Modern Floorplans: An Average Wild West Town is a Kickstarted RPG Supplement from Fabled Environments.

Fabled Environments have a strong line of maps on PDF that I have personally used on occasion.  This new one – Kickstarted in 2015 – looked like an ambitious project but I knew once funded, it would be a quality product for use in your RPG game.  This Western Town, although linked to the The Battle of Whistle Reach Junction adventure, can be used in just about any game that is Western themed.  I can even see it in a western sci-fi game like Serenity/FireFly.

From the Kickstarter page: Ever wanted to run a old west campaign? Do you love the grit of the wild west and the pioneering spirit of those folks that left everything behind and went west to seek their fortune?

This PDF provides all you need for a Western town.  Included in this PDF is a General Store, School House, Sheriff’s Office/Jail, two story Settler’s Cabin, Church, two story Saloon, and a two story Livery Stable.  Each map is fully details with furniture, features and everything.  Done professionally with AutoCAD, each building has an optional grids (squares or hexes) that takes full advantage of the layering options in Adobe.  You can also take out the furniture, text or background art by clicking on the layers tab and turning off which ever one you want. Each map is also  given with dimension for printing so that they are ready for the table right away.   No messing around with scaling or anything.

From the Kickstarter page: Just like a good play or movie, a story needs a great set to make it come alive. That is where we come in. This Kickstarter will give you what you need to help make your vision come alive on the tabletop. The Kickstarter is for floor plans of several iconic old west structures: Settler’s Cabin, Hotel/Saloon, General Store, Church W/Cemetery, Sheriff’s Office and a Livery Stable.

In conclusion,  I highly recommend these maps if you plan a Western style game or of course, if you plan to run The Battle of Whistle Reach Junction.  They are well done, easy to print and ready-made for your game.

For more details on Fabled Environments and their new RPG Supplement Modern Floorplans: An Average Wild West Town” check them out at their website Fabled Environments, and at all of your local game stores.

Codex Rating: 18

Product Summary

Modern Floorplans: An Average Wild West Town

From: Fabled Environments

Type of Game: RPG Supplement

Created By Charles & Krista White

Drawn by Krista White

Conceptualized by Charles White

Cover Art Concept by Preston Dubose

Number of Pages: 18

Website: Fabled Environments

Reviewed by: XReviewerNameX

21 Plots Go Forth

From: Gypsy Knights Games

Reviewed by: Ron McClung

21 Plots Go Forth is a RPG Supplement from Gypsy Knights Games.

I am always amazed by the level of inspiration and creativeness by the writers at Gypsy Knights Games.  The 21 plot series has many cool ideas to jump off from that really give you a new perspective on a hard science fiction setting like Clement Sector.  21 Plots Go Forth does not disappoint.  This is the fourth book in the series, starting with 21 Plots, 21 Plots Too and 21 Plots 3.  There is also a series of “situational” 21 Plots series – 21 Plots: Planetside, 21 Plots: Misbehave and 21 Plots: Samaritan.

NOTE:  This is the Mongoose Traveller edition of the PDF.  Since receiving this, Gypsy Knights has disassociated from the Mongoose Traveller game system and developed their own called The Clement Sector, the Rules, using the open license with Samardan Press and their Cepheus Engine.  If they haven’t yet already, they will be converting this supplement to the game system.

From page 3: ” … this book presents 21 possible plots for the Referee to use with a gaming group.”

Delving back into a familiar layout, 21 Plots Go Forth starts out where the previous books left off.  A series of adventure seeds with tables for options on the end result.  Each plot has six possible variations, and the GM can either choose or roll a dice to determine what happens.  Either way you do it, I recommend you read them all, because they inspire you to combine two or more.  As the title implies, there 21 total plot inspirations.

From page 3: We at Gypsy Knights Games hope this product is used and reused by you many times and that it is an aide to you in coming … campaigns.

From strange hypnotists to con artists, corporate explorers in need of escort to royal agents in need of a prison break, these plots have it all (again).  Many of them are Clement specific, integrating some of the cultures of the various worlds in the setting (and where they might conflict) but with a little work, they can easily be worked into another sci-fi setting.   Included in the back of the PDF is a complete Index of the 21 plots series.  This is extremely handy if you have all the books.

In conclusion,  I found this addition to the series a little more eccentric than the others.  There are some very detailed and interesting adventure ideas in this book.  I guess the more a writer puts out, the more eclectic the ideas become.  I found many of them very inspiring.

For more details on Gypsy Knights Games and their new RPG Supplement 21 Plots Go Forth” check them out at their website Gypsy Knights Games, and at all of your local game stores.

Codex Rating: 16

Product Summary

21 Plots Go Forth

From: Gypsy Knights Games

Type of Game: RPG Supplement

Authors: John Watts, Bradley Warnes, “Big” Dan Callahan, Vaughn Wright, Curtis Rickman, Paul Santiago

Artist: Bradley Warnes

Cover Layout: Stephanie McAlea

Editor: Curtis Rickman

Number of Pages: 47

Game Components Included: One PDF

Game Components Not Included: Core Rulebooks

Website: Gypsy Knights Games

Reviewed by: Ron McClung

Modern Floorplans: Arctic Research Station

From: Fabled Environments

Reviewed by: Ron McClung

Modern Floorplans Vol. 7: An Average Modern Arctic Research Station is a new RPG Map Supplement from Fabled Environments.

Movies like The Thing from Space (or John Carpenter’s The Thing) or Ice Station Zebra, or more recently Harbinger Down come to mind when I think of the Arctic and the potential for adventure there.  In an RPG, it would be nice to have a generic map of a location in the Arctic.  Fabled Environments now provides a nice map for use in such an environment.

From page #4: For years, I have enjoyed playing in and running modern and near-future campaigns.  The frustrating thing about gaming within these settings is the lack of maps.

Provided in the PDF are three modules of a Arctic Station – Upper and Lower Living Quarters as well as the Laboratory/Research module.  There is also a connection hub where up to four modules will connect.  The PDF then provides various configurations of the modules and the hib.  Each map has a printable one page version for reference as well as a larger one for the table.  The modules are printable on 24″ X 36″ and the hub is printable on 17″ X 22″.

From page #4:  About a year ago, Krista began drafting in AutoCAD and creating some amazing structures for school projects and then for work.

The drafting is high quality and well done.  Below is a sampling of what it looks line, complete with 1″ squares, standard for most RPGs.

One of the best things about these maps is that they are provided with printing dimensions allowing for immediate table readiness.  It is best printed  on a plotter or large printer.   No messing around with scaling or anything.  Additionally, the PDF takes full advantage of the layering options in Adobe.  You can take out the furniture, grids, text or walls by clicking on the layers tab and turning which ever one off.

In conclusion, since I tend to run modern, near-future and sci-fi games, this is the kind of thing I like to have handy.  Not only is this useful for the Arctic, but with a little work and imagination, it can be used for a moon base or something like that.  As always, I am impressed with the detail and quality of Fabled Environments work.

For more details on Fabled Environments and their new RPG Supplement Modern Floorplans Vol. 7: An Average Modern Arctic Research Station ” check them out at their website Fabled Environments, and at all of your local game stores.

Codex Rating: 18

Product Summary

Modern Floorplans Vol. 7: An Average Modern Arctic Research Station

From: Fabled Environments

Type of Game: RPG Map Supplement 

Drawn by: Krista White

Conceptualized by: Charles White

Cover Art by: Preston DuBose

Number of Pages: 19

Game Components Included: one printable PDF

Retail Price: $ 3.00 (US)

Website: http://fabledenvironments.com/wp/

Ships of Clement Sector 10: Lee class Merchant Vessel

From: Gypsy Knights Games

Reviewed by: Ron McClung

Ships of Clement Sector 10: Lee class Merchant Vessel is a RPG supplement from Gypsy Knights Game (now part of Ships of Clement Sector 10-12: Workhorses 2nd Edition).

NOTE:  This is the Traveller edition of the PDF.  Since receiving this, Gypsy Knights has disassociated from the Traveller game system and developed their own called The Clement Sector, the Rules.  It is now part of Ships of Clement Sector 10-12: Workhorses 2nd Edition

The Millennium Falcon.   The Serenity.  Sci-fi is full of merchant vessels that travel the space lanes delivering payloads – legal or illegal – to paying customers.  John Watt’s Clement Sector is no different.

From page #3: People say owning your own ship must be the most wonderful thing in the universe. There is no one to answer to, and nothing but the stars to gaze at everyday with freedom to go wherever you want, whenever you want. The thing is, they don’t have a creditor hanging over their head waiting to repossess the ship if you miss a payment one too many times.

The Lee-class merchant ship, designed by Boone Starship Industries, is a freighter vessel with a double height cargo hold and three large cargo access areas as it selling points.  Two-thirds of the length of the ship is dedicated to cargo, making it a sort of “18-wheeler” of merchant vessels (Space Truckers, anyone?).  Unfortunately, this rings true for its’ maneuverability as well.  The ship however, has some teeth, with the potential of four turrets mounted on the outside.  The ship’s crew capacity is five but can take up to 10 passengers.  It has two distinct decks which are both compartmentalized for security and for damage control.

The ship itself has a sleek elongated appearance that makes me think of a train car or 18-wheeler in space.  The PDF details out a considerable amount of information about the ship including contents of ship’s lockers and overall system capabilities.  The decks plans are exceptional as usual and usable in just about any sci-fi RPG system.  To make it to scale will take a little work but the deck plans are detailed enough for table use.

 

From page #3: Peering over a handful of square cards, he fought hard to keep the grin from his face. Luck was changing, and for the better if this hand of ‘Clement21’ played out like he thought it would. “I see your high spread and raise you five… betcha two to one this hand is gonna make you
weep when you see it, mate.”

The PDF then details a sample ship and crew called the Nebular’s Ghost.  The Ghost, captained by Gaibrielle O’Rourke, navigates a regular route originating from Boone and connecting to many nearby systems. Each crew member is detailed out in RPG stats and background notes.  The PDF ends with 6 different adventure seeds that are generic enough they can be worked into any Merchant ship adventure.

In conclusion,  I can’t get enough of these types of PDFs because I love having any kind of ship at my disposal for my players.  Like I say a lot with these supplements, they can be used in any sci-fi system.  The detail the writers put into it make these ships seem to jump out pages.  The detailed art is also inspiration as usual. It’s a perfect ship for a RPG party to crew.

For more details on Gypsy Knights Game and their RPG supplement  “Ships of Clement Sector 10: Lee class Merchant Vessel” check them out at their website http://www.gypsyknightsgames.com/, and at all of your local game stores.

Codex Rating: 16

Product Summary

Ships of Clement Sector 10: Leeclass Merchant Vessel

From: Gypsy Knights Games

Type of Game: RPG supplement 

Author: Michael Johnson

Additional Material by Bradley Warnes

Artists: Ian Stead, Michael Johnson , Bradley Warnes

Cover Layout: Stephanie McAlea

Editor: Curtis Rickman

Number of Pages: 27

Game Components Included: One PDF

Game Components Not Included: Core Rules for Clement Sector

Website: Gypsy Knights Game

Reviewed by: Ron McClung

Clement Sector: The Rules

From: Gypsy Knights Games

Reviewed by: Ron McClung

Clement Sector: The Rules is a new RPG Core Rulebook from Gypsy Knights Games.  It use the open game license for the Cepheus Engine.

Open game licenses are tricky and the revival of many old school game engines have tried their best to take advantage of them.  In the case of Gypsy Knights Games, their license with Mongoose Traveller had run its course and they were left to find a new alternative for the core rule system.  Enter Samardan Press and their Cepheus Engine, which is based on the classic 2d6 system of Classic Era Science Fiction 2D6-Based Open Gaming System (aka old Traveller).  For the past year or so, Gypsy Knights has been busy working to convert their products to the Cepheus Engine.  Starting with this book, it is a new era for the Clement Sector.

From page 16: Clement Sector began its published life in 2011 as an alternate setting for a popular science fiction roleplaying system.

You can obtain the Cepheus Engine SRD by donating any amount of money in DriveThruRPG.  However, it is not needed as the Clement Sector: The Rules PDF contains all you need.  There are some slight adjustments to the rules, skills, careers, etc to fit the setting but the basics are more or less the same.  While this PDF gives you some of the basic stuff like core rule system and the like, the Clement Sector Core Setting Book (2nd edition) also provides more, including tables for Character Generation.

SETTING

As the name implies, this is a rule book and has very little setting information.  However, the setting itself has not changed and much of this information is contained in the Clement Sector Core Setting Book.  At its heart, the Clement Sector is a setting of human exploration, expansion, and exploitation.  Humans are the dominant species and very few aliens (if any) have been encountered.  For informational and contextual purposes, I will include a short summary of the setting.

In the 23rd century, Earth humans discovered a Einstein-Rosen bridge or wormhole (The Conduit) near the Epsilon Eridani system and used it to discover the Clement sector on the other side of the galaxy.  Even with the “Zimm Drive” (this setting’s version of FTL), it would take a long time to reach the other end of the wormhole.

For a time, that wormhole remained stable enough that humans could colonize the plethora of worlds found on the other side.  Before long, the humanity had established 16 sub-sectors including Franklin, Winston, Dade, Sequoyah, Cascadia, and Hub (previously reviewed first edition books).  Then the wormhole collapsed after about 130 years of colonization and expansion.  Clement was left on its own.  The setting starts a little over a decade after the collapse.

The setting is rich in culture – some familiar and some imaginatively warped or mashed together.  Instead of aliens, the setting has Uplifted animals – apes, dolphins, bears and other animals have been genetically upgraded to be intelligent.  They also have transhuman Altrants – humans that have been genetically altered for a specific purpose.

CORE SYSTEM

The core system is very familiar to anyone that played classic Traveller.  Even though they can not make any reference to the copyrighted name, it is basically classic Traveller.  It is a basic 2d6 roll versus a target number of 8.  Eight is always the target number.  What makes it vary are modifiers to the roll.  It is a rather simplistically elegant system that is easy to remember.  Old school.  It does not have a lot of game play flair but it get the job done when and where it needs to.  At times, the system requires an Effect, which is how much the total either exceeded or missed the target number of 8.  This can determine a degree of success or add to damage of an attack.

The book itself is broken down into 16 sections.  The first five cover the core of what roleplaying games are about – the Basics (rules), Characters, Skills, Equipment and Personal Combat.  The Basics generally go over foundational concepts of role playing, core system concepts and mechanics as well as common themes of Clement Sector adventuring.  As described above, the system is elegant with an old-school feel.

Character creation for a character in the Clement sector is more than just a few numbers and skills.  The player generates stats and skills along with a full background starting from Childhood through Collegiate events. This section references tables that are not included in this PDF but are found in Clement Sector Core Setting Book.  This system completely fleshes out a three-dimensional Clement Sector character.

Skills are straightforward.  Listed are basic skills and their specializations.  There are a few more than in the basic Cepheus Engine system as well as a few more specializations.  Equipment includes a considerable list of general gear, armor and weapons.  Tech levels are adjusted for the setting.  As for weapons, standard slugthrower type weapons are standard but there are also lasers and gauss.

Like most any sci-fi setting, the Clement Sector can get violent.  The Personal Combat section covers all that you need to deal with that kind of violence.  The Clement Sector Rules system changes the Cepheus Engine slight by asking the players to roll initiative each round.  I prefer a system that does this, giving everyone a chance to affect each round in their own way.  Actions are either free, minor or major (similar to d20), and there are various  battlefield effects that might change the effectiveness of those actions.

I have always found it interesting how this system has no hitpoint but instead damage is taken directly from stats.  First Endurance, then Strength or Dexterity.  Once either of the latter are reduced to zero, they are unconscious.  Once all three are reduced to zero, they are dead.  This makes for a pretty gritty and deadly system, with pistols capable of 2d6 damage and large weapons cause up to 4d6 and 5d6.  Armor is important.

From page 17:  This simple system is used for nearly everything in the game, with variations based on the modifiers added to a roll and the effects of success and failure.

The last four covers the sci-fi fundamentals of Space Travel, Trade and Commerce,  and Space Combat.  Included in the space combat and travel section is a special appendix on the largest ship builder in Clement – Anderson and Felix and their additions to starships.  This is further expanded on in the The Anderson and Felix Guide to Naval Architecture.  

In this kind of sci-fi RPG, the players find adventure because they are involved in some kind of space travel or trade.  In many cases, they own or lease a ship. These sections cover the day to day operations they may do as a crew.  The biggest change between this and standard Cepheus Engine is the Zimm Drive, which is a setting specific technology.  There are a lot of tables and math in this section to calculate time of travel, etc and if you really want to get down to the nitty gritty of space travel, this is the section for you.  Have your spreadsheets ready.

If things get real nasty, and the party is involved in space combat, the rules are contained in the Space Combat section.  My problem with any science fiction game that includes this is that it boils the game down to a miniature game and draws the attention from the players.  I am not a fan of that kind of thing, so it would be up to the Referee/GM to keep the focus on the players while dealing with ship to ship combat.  If this is what you are into, this book supplies all you need to do it, utilizing the Cepheus Engine to its fullest extent.

The last chapters cover various miscellaneous subjects like Environments and Hazards (which can be quite a lot in sci-fi), Worlds and the Universal World Profile, and a series of Encounter tables.  One of the things I found useful from Traveller and used in many of my other sci-fi games was their encounter tables and the adventure seeds that grew out of them.  Patron Encounters were my favorite.  These can be directly related to the various 21 Plots supplements by Gypsy Knights.  The book finally ends with notes on how to run as a Referee (Game Master) and how to write an adventure.

In conclusion, at its core, Clement Sector is a throwback to old school Traveller with a fresh look at how it can be played.  The Cepheus Engine is a perfect marriage for it, as it takes very little conversation from the 1st edition stuff.  From a rule system standpoint, this book sets you on the right path for a solid RPG system that is strongly rooted in old school gaming.  There is a reason why the classics are coming back with this old school revival movement – because they were good and simple.  This is definitely one of those systems.

From a setting standpoint, it is not your typical space opera or science fantasy type game as it has its roots in realistic sci-fi.  It takes human social structures, groups and norms and advances into the future, without the standard tropes of pointy-eared aliens and tentacled ancients.  My advice to any Referee that wants to play this setting – engage your players into the setting, link them directly to it and give them a reason to care about it.  Characters can not be just randomly placed into this setting.  They need to be part of it.

For more details on Gypsy Knights Games and their new RPG Core Rulebook Clement Sector: The Rules” check them out at their website Gypsy Knights Games, and at all of your local game stores.

Codex Rating: 17

Product Summary

Clement Sector: The Rules

From: Gypsy Knights Games

Type of Game: RPG Core Rulebook

Authors: John Watts, Michael Johnson, and Jason Kemp

Additional Material: Ian Stead

Artists: Bradley Warnes, Ian Stead , Stephanie McAlea, Algol,  Oleg Gapeenko,  GrandFailure, DesignWest

Editor: Curtis Rickman

Cover Layout: Stephanie McAlea

Number of Pages: 217

Website: Gypsy Knights Games

Reviewed by: Ron McClung

Ships of Clement Sector 3: Moltke-class Cruiser

From: Gypsy Knights Games
Reviewed by: Ron McClung

Ships of Clement Sector 3: Moltke-class Cruiser is a new RPG Supplement from Gypsy Knights Games.

Following along the same lines as the previous entry in this series,  Ships of Clement Sector 3 introduces another military class ship into the Clement Sector.  With a sleek look and intimidating array of weapons, the Moltke-class Cruiser is a new force to be rekonned with in the sector.

From page # 3: “Umm… contact!

Once again, Gypsy Knights not only introduces an interesting ship, but includes an interesting background.  The background gives you a little taste of the political tensions between the various Earth-originated nationalities in the Clement Sector, prior to the Collapse (and may still remian in certain areas).  This particular ship was started pre-Collapse in a arms build up between Germany and the Royal Navy.  Eventually, the new class of cruiser was built based on the plans for an older pre-Collapse and the Hub was the proud owners of multiple Moltke-class Cruisers.  

These ships pack a punch and are bristling with weapons. 2500 dT Needle/Wedge design, it is an impressive ship.  It can hold up to 70 crew and 12 marines, and is an “armoured behemoth primarily designed to destroy opposing warships…”   They are built to act as a fleet flagship.  It also carries a Captain’s Gig, small Boat and a Cutter (all of which at detailed out and mapped).  You want to judge a power by its most powerful weapon, judge the Hub on the Moltke-class Cruiser.

From page # 3: “ The single word broke the fragile silence on the bridge, drawing attention to his station from every officer and crewman present. With all eyes swivelling toward the young, first termer officer, he clamped his lips closed and let out an audible gulp. ”

Additionally, as I suppose a bonus, a new type of fast attack ship is detailed.  Called the Mercury-class Fast Packet Boat, it is now the official courier ship for the Hub Federation.  The ship resembles some of the fast attack ships of  Vulkan-class Attack Boat Tender (Ships of Clement Sector 2), it has the primary function of carrying communiques between fleets.  Included with this is a series of adventure hooks for a crew of a ship like this.

In conclusion, Gypsy Knights continues to impress with sleek looking designs and great story attached to these ships.  Although not a ship that would be owned by a party of characters, it for sure is something a group of characters might serve on.  I think the additional ship – Mercury-class Fast Packet Boat – was added more for this purpose, and serves very well for that.

For more details on Gypsy Knights Games and their new RPG SupplementShips of Clement Sector 3: Moltke-class Cruiser” check them out at their website http://Www.gypsyknightsgames.com, and at all of your local game stores.

Codex Rating: 16

Product Summary

Ships of Clement Sector 3: Moltke-class Cruiser
From: Gypsy Knights Games
Type of Game: RPG Supplement
Author: Michael Johnson
Artists: Ian Stead, Bradley Warnes, Michael Johnson
Editor: Curtis Rickman
Number of Pages: 38
Game Components Included: One PDF Supplement
Game Components Not Included: Core Traveller and Clement Sector books
Retail Price: $4.99(US)
Website: Www.gypsyknightsgames.com

Reviewed by: Ron McClung

21 More Organizations

From: Gypsy Knights Games
Reviewed by: Ron McClung

21 More Organizations is a new RPG Supplement from Gypsy Knights Games.

 I am of the philosophy that a majority of the stories we collectively make in RPGs are born of conflict, may it be physical, spiritual, moral, mental or social.  History buffs like myself can attest that humanity has a long history of conflict.  A conflict does not have to be war or combat.  It can be the type that is in the shadows and behind the scenes;  the intrigue and deceit of conflicting factions.

 In science fiction RPGs, if you don’t have the natural conflict that would come from competing with alien species, then you are left with humanity’s natural propensity to conflict with itself.  This is where factions and organizations come in.  Humanity has a strong need to feel belonged to something; be a member of something.  We are very tribal.  Forming organizations and factions is our nature.

This is what 21 More Organizations is about.  As a follow up to 21 Organizations, it presents the same number of organizations, along with origins, agendas and motivations.  Where humanity goes, so does all its politics and when given the freedom to spread out into something like Clement Sector, the more factions seem to flourish.  Clement Sector is a fertile ground for human factionalization.

From RPGNow website: “ 21 More Organizations provides 21 new and varied groups from Gypsy Knights Games’ Clement Sector setting for use in your Traveller game, each with their own unique history, motives, and goals. ”

 The organizations described in this sourcebook range from obscure paramilitary groups to charity groups;  starship pilot “biker” gangs to holovid production companies; obscure political pseudo-religious groups to scientific scholar societies; crime families to inteligence agencies.  What I like about these is that they are realistic in that they are not “sector spanning,” for the most part.  It recognizes that space is big and it is very difficult to maintain something like a sector-wide organization.  This makes the organizations not only practical but also tangible and localized.

From RPGNow website:  “Read about groups as varied as The Reliable Starship Escort Service, The Royal Astrographical Society and Harbringer Productions.”

Every organization has their own motivations, and as the GM reads them, conflicts and alliances will begin to form.  Connections and opposing interests will form stories and eventually adventures are born.

Organizations that stand out to me are ones like Intelligence Now!, based out of Fairfax in the Cascadia subsector.  It is an organization dedicated to the uplift of all animals by either genetic or cybernetic means – an animal rights organization gone even more wacky.  Or you could check out Ministry 7, the intelligence agency of Fairfax.  I love a good spy agency.  There is certainly a wide range of organizations in this PDF. 

In conclusion, I love anything that brings depth and variety to a setting.  There is so much potential for variety in Clement that I can see many more of these sourcebooks being produced.  This one has a lot of what you would want – it’s creative, inspiring, quirky and weird.

For more details on Gypsy Knights Games and their new RPG Supplement21 More Organizations” check them out at their website http://Www.gypsyknightsgames.com, and at all of your local game stores.

Codex Rating: 16

Product Summary

21 More Organizations
From: Gypsy Knights Games
Type of Game: RPG Supplement
Authors: John Watts, Curtis Rickman, Tony Hicks, Kayla Lee, Michael Johnson and Wendy Watts
Artists: Bradley Warnes , Fotolia: Valebisba, Serkorkin, Ninjanakon, pachanga, madpixblue, veroji, natalipova2011
Editor:  Curtis Rickman
Number of Pages: 41
Game Components Included: One PDF
Game Components Not Included: Core Traveller and Core Clement Sector books
Retail Price: $5.99 (US)
Website: www.gypsyknightsgames.com

Reviewed by: Ron McClung

Ships of Clement Sector 5: Traders and Scouts

From: Gypsy Knights Games
Reviewed by: Ron McClung

Ships of Clement Sector 5: Traders and Scouts is a RPG Supplement from Gypsy Knights Games.

I never really know how to approach supplements like these.  To me, playing an RPG is all about making the collective story.  Vehicles and equipment are just tools in that story.  However, in sci-fi settings, starships do play a big part of that story and are sometimes the source of that story.

Ships of Clement Sector 5: Traders and Scouts is an extensive supplement that gives the readers a selection of the many types of Traders and Scout vessels seen in Clement Sector, from small light traders to specialized long range scout ships.

This supplement has a total of seven ships.  Each ship is detailed, starting with Background and Development, followed by Specifications.  This is followed by a detailed description of each deck and important locations on that deck.  Included with each is a very attractive 3D rendering of the ship as well as a deck plan for each deck.  If the ship includes a shuttle of some kind, that is included also.

From page # 5: “ By the 24th century, mankind has been working and living in space for close to three hundred years, having spread across the stars for two hundred of those.”

The renderings and the deck plans are on the level of what you would expect from Gypsy Knights – top notch.  These ships are all very slick looking with a strong hint of practicality and realism.  These ships are not only useful in the Clement Sector setting of Traveller but they would easily fit in any hard sci-fi game.

I really like many of the designs of the ships but one that stands out to me is the Palomino-class Runabout.  It is a sleek looking ship that is perfect for an adventuring crew.  I just really like this design.

The PDF ends with pre-generated characters for a 4-man crew of a ship called the Billings class free trader (one of the seven ships in the book), the Profitable Venture, and a series of short adventure hooks.

From page # 5:  “ Within Clement Sector, that far flung pocket of humanity isolated from Earth when the Conduit connecting Earth Sector collapsed, dozens of independent colonized systems continue to maintain trade links and routes despite political and cultural differences by the necessity to trade, to grow, to survive.”

In conclusion, what I like most about this line of Gypsy Knights products is its broad usefulness, the practicality and realism in them and the originality.  This is a great supplement to have if you want some ships to work with for your adventuring characters.

For more details on Gypsy Knights Games and their new PG Supplement “Ships of Clement Sector 5: Traders and Scouts” check them out at their website http://www.gypsyknightsgames.com/, and at all of your local game stores.

Codex Rating: 16

Product Summary

Ships of Clement Sector 5: Traders and Scouts
From: Gypsy Knights Games
Type of Game: RPG Supplement
Written By: Michael Johnson
Additional Material by Bradley Warnes
Artists: Ian Stead, Michael Johnson, Bradley Warnes
Editor: Curtis Rickman
Number of Pages: 81
Game Components Included: Single PDF
Game Components Not Included: Core Traveller Rulebooks, Clement Sector setting book.
Retail Price: $9.99(US)
Website: http://www.gypsyknightsgames.com/

Reviewed by: Ron McClung

Dawn Adventures 2: Hell’s Paradise

From: Gypsy Knights Games
Reviewed by: Ron McClung

Dawn Adventures 2: Hell’s Paradise is a RPG Adventure from Gypsy Knights Games.

Following up Dawn Adventures 1, number 2 takes place in the same region, as the name implies.  See my review of the first adventure HERE.  Like the first one, this adventure takes place in an alternate Traveller setting known as Clement Sector and in the frontier region known as the Dawn subsector of the Tranquility Sector.

From page 3: “This book is an adventure based in the alternate Traveller universe which Gypsy Knights Games has been building, known as the Clement Sector”

 The adventure start out much like the previous one with the summary of the Dawn subsector as well as a series of pre-generated characters and a ship for them to use in the adventure.  A perfect setup for a one shot adventure if the GM does not plan to do a campaign.  It’s quite obvious the Gypsy Knights folks have that down.  And I have said this before and I will say it again, these adventures are perfect for conventions games.

The adventure takes place in a system orbiting the star TXE605, on a world called Calliope (TXE605b) by Nordic Exploratory Society.  A brief summary of the system and the world is also presented.  Linked to the first adventure, they party starts off where the last adventure left off, with the ship aiding those that might have been injured in the disaster that took place on Argos Prime.  While on Argos Prime, the players are recruited to help find a lost survey ship bound for TXE605.

From page 3: “The Dawn subsector is located to trailing (or to the right) of the Cascadia Subsector of Clement Sector.”

 The adventure takes the players along the path of the lost ship, starting from Argos Prime to another world called Bicocca (for fuel) and then on to TXE605.  Little happens in Bicocca, which I see as a missed opportunity but a GM can adapt an encounter for the characters if he so wishes.  Onward to TXE605, the players finally learn the fate of the missing ship.

 The rest of the adventure takes place on TXE605b, where mysteriously the oceans teem with life and the land is barren of it.  Without giving too much away, they find a grisly scene and have to investigate into some kind of alien effect on the crew of the missing ship.  They explore the ship (a nice map provided) room by room.

In conclusion, the adventure is fairly straight forward and perhaps a little cliched. It is probably not the best of the series but with a little tweaking, I think the adventure can be fun.  It is very detailed and a GM needs to read it cover to cover to make sure every detail is covered for the players.

For more details on Gypsy Knights Games and their RPG AdventureDawn Adventures 2: Hell’s Paradise” check them out at their website http://www.gypsyknightsgames.com/, and at all of your local game stores.

Codex Rating: 14

Product Summary

Dawn Adventures 2: Hell’s Paradise
From: Gypsy Knights Games
Type of Game: RPG Adventure
Author: George Ebersole
Artists: Bradley Warnes (Cover), Ian Stead, John Watts
Editor: Curtis Rickman
Number of Pages: 46
Game Components Included: One PDF
Game Components Not Included: Core Traveller books/PDF
Retail Price: $5.99(US)
Website: http://www.gypsyknightsgames.com/

Reviewed by: Ron McClung

 

 

Savage Worlds: Throwdown at the North Pole

From: Fabled Environments

Reviewed by: Ron McClung

Throwdown at the North Pole is a Savage Worlds adventure from Fabled Environments.

Written by Clint Black of Pinnacle Entertainment Group fame, Throwdown at the North Pole is a silly holiday adventure set in the North Pole on Christmas night.  Leave it to Clint Black to come up with such a funny and silly concept for a Savage Worlds adventure.  It’s a great concept. I could not help but chuckle a little while I read it.

From page 3: The workshops are closed, Santa off on his journey. But there’s no rest for the elves. Santa’s mortal enemies, the abominable snowmen, attack each year as soon as the big man is gone.

This adventure is designed for use with Fabled Environments’ Candy Cane Cottage map, and showcases not only the diversity and ease of Savage Worlds combat system but the detail and elegance of Fabled Environment floor plans.  The mini adventure is simple and does not have a ton of story associated to it.  It is meant to not only show how fun Savage Worlds combat system is but also show you how to use the Mass Combat system or the Showdown Rules, depending on your preferences.

Concept: Mrs. Claus is in charge while Santa is away doing his job on Christmas night.  This is traditionally when Santa’s worst enemies try to take over his shop.  The Abominable Snowman are planning attack this night.  Mrs. Claus along with the elves are left to defend the shop while Santa away.  The players are given a certain amount of time to prepare and several options to set up a defensive perimeter with including Christmas trees and holly bushes.

From page 3: That’s right; the leader of the elves is none other than Mrs. Claus, one of the most formidable holiday warriors on the planet.

Stats for the Snowmen, Elves and Mrs. Clause are provided.  The Snowmen are armed with things like Freezing Weapons and Refrig-Generation, while Mrs. Claus has Combat Candy Cane, Snow Globe Grenades, and a Smore-11 SMG.  The Elves, who scramble to defend the shop when the snowmen are discovered, are armed with things like Toy-Making Mallet,  Fresh-Baked Throwing Cookies, and a K-12 Ice-Salt Rifle with Ice Scraper Bayonet.  Other equipment available include Kringle-7 Light Marshmallow Pistol, Rudolph-6000 Deicer, and a Treat-Mint.  These had me rolling in laughter.

The last page is the map of the workshop, which is surprisingly small – 5″ by 6″ rectangular cottage.  Labeled a “Average Modern Gingerbread Cottage,”  it is where Mrs. Claus and her elves make a last stand.  It makes for a very claustrophobic and tactically challenging combat setting reminiscent of Night of the Living Dead or something like that.

In conclusion, this is a perfect adventure to not only illustrate how fun Savage Worlds combat can be, but also break in a younger crowd to the game.  Nothing is too gory or scary, and kids would love to play elves throwing around explosive snow globes and deadly freshly baked cookies.  If you are brave, you can even provide props.  It can also act as a cool convention games for kids.

For more details on Fabled Environments and their new Savage Worlds Adventure Savage Worlds Adventure” check them out at their website Fabled Environments, and at all of your local game stores.

Codex Rating: 18

Product Summary

Savage Worlds Adventure

From: Fabled Environments

Type of Game: Savage Worlds Adventure

Written by: Clint Black

Contributing Authors: Jodi Black

Number of Pages: 8

Website: Fabled Environments

Reviewed by: Ron McClung