Tagged: PIGAMES

Three games from Precis Intermedia

Its been a while since I looked at what was on offer at Precis Intermedia who have long been one of my favorite publishers.  I’m a big fan of the Iron Gauntlets fantasy setting as well as Coyote Trail Wild West Adventures and the delightful Two Fisted Tales pulp RPG.

There are three reasonably new lines from Precis Intermedia that have caught my eye, I haven’t had time yet to play them all but I most certainly will and all for different reasons.

Lords Of OlympusThe first is Lords Of Olympus, a diceless roleplaying game set in the worlds of Oympian fantasy.

Portray gods and demigods — children of Olympian Gods, Titans, or Primordials in this diceless roleplaying game of multi-dimensional mythology Fantasy. Explore new realms or the classic worlds of Earth and Mythological Greece. Visit Zeus’ Olympus, Poseidon’s Seas, or Hades’ Underworld. Mix politics with intrigue, alliances with wars as power-struggles and vengeance drive stories. Or, go the route of lesser power with mortals and heroes.

Now in the past I have struggled to get some of my groups to participate in diceless games, the emphasis is inevitably more on the story than the rules, you need to feel perhaps a little more creative and my experience is that this tends to scare some players away.  Lords of Olympus has its roots in the Amber diceless system which could probably claim to be the original and greatest diceless system ever – it makes the game easy to pick up and ensures quick and flowing gameplay.

I haven’t come across another game in the Olympian setting that has as much to offer as Lords Of Olympus, the scope of the game is truly epic and I can easily see myself running godly campaigns across Mythological Greece, venturing across Poseidon’s seas and into the underworld ruled by Hades or maybe even taking my Greek heroes and demigods into the future.

Lords of Olympus encourages players and writers to produce and publish their own supplements for the game, royalty free offering an Open Supplement License – and I am certain there will be plenty of material appearing in due course.

*Note – When we first published this article we mistakenly noted the diceless system which underpins Lords of Olympus as being Active Exploits (a very good system in its own right), however we should have stated that it was the Amber diceless system – please accept our apologies for this editorial error.

ShatterzoneNext a reprint of an RPG classic Shatterzone.  Originally published in 1993 by West End Games, Shatterzone is classic Sci-Fi roleplaying at its best:

“Space is big… Life is hard… And the Universe isn’t just a game anymore”.

I always liked Shatterzone because it was easily customized, and this is still the case, the guidelines (rules?) for creating your own alien species always pleased me allowing for truly unique player characters.  With a vast setting from primitive worlds to high-tech megacorporate bases, from alien discoveries to the unknown mysteries of the Shatterzone itself there is plenty to keep a band of space adventurers busy whether a single game or over an extended campaign.

I haven’t yet had time to read the Precis Intermedia version in detail, but from my quick review they seem to have stuck to the original rules and material, which is good.  With a basis in the Masterbook RPG, but complete in its own right character creation is a simple points based process allowing you to balance attributes, skills, advantages and disadvantages.  The system itself is easy and quick to pick up with a simple results table guiding and helping measure the success of any action, be that combat or some kind of social interaction.

There are already three supplements available for Shatterzone: Brain Burn and Shadow Of A Black Sun – both very diverse campaign guides, and Zeenarchs – A xeno-archeology supplement – offering something very different.

I love seeing good old games reprinted in this way and most importantly I love seeing new generations of roleplayers exploring the games that I enjoyed over two decades ago.  If you didn’t have it back then, don’t miss out now.

BloodshadowsFinally something that I am very excited about.  The world of Bloodshadows.  I have two favorite genres of RPG, like many I love a fantasy campaigns and I have a real penchant for film noir style settings.  Well that in a nutshell is Bloodshadows.

There are a couple of excellent strap-lines used about the product: “Fantasy climbs out of the dungeon – Dragons are the least of your worries” and “You’re not just hunting monsters anymore… You’re playing them”

Once again, like Shatterzone, Bloodshadows is a reprint of a 1994 West End Games release. But for some reason it is one that passed me by and I had never heard of before. It is worth noting straight away that Bloodshadows is only a source book for use with the Masterbook system – you do need both to play.  Luckily this too has been reprinted by Precis Intermedia.

The World of Bloodshadows is a roleplaying game that combines pulp adventures with dark fantasy. As it says on the tin it takes fantasy out of the moldy old castles and ancient tombs, and brings it back to the black magic alleys and cheap gin joints where it belongs. Tough detectives in weathered trenchcoats swap biting comments with vampires in evening gowns. Humans walk down dark streets side by side with demonic breeds and long-dead ghouls. And death — or Undeath — waits around every corner. Your weapons are magic and technology, but neither replaces a good head on your shoulders. And you’ll have to work to keep it there. You’re not just hunting monsters anymore… you’re playing them.

Bloodshadows is a game I really look forward to playing and I can imagine running.  I have for a long time thought about setting a game in the worlds of “exorcist come PI” Felix Castor, based on the novels of Mike Carey – maybe this is the system to do it with.

Take a look, three games one publisher all very different but promising much in the way of good old RPG fun and games.

Regards,

Derek.

Basic Action Super Heroes – BASH!

I was recently sent a link to Basic Action Games along with a pointer to their Superhero roleplaying game BASH! (Basic Action Super Heroes). The “Ultimate Edition” of BASH! became available on the 27th November and you can purchase it either as a hard copy or as a downloadable PDF from DriveThroughRPG, RPGNow or PIGames.

I reviewed the PDF which weighed in at a hefty 137 pages and is punctuated by some great comic book style artwork. The system is very simple, using just a couple of d6 and some very basic mathematics it can be picked up in minutes and character creation is also very simple, something which is often a problem with rpgs in this genre where superpowers can become horrendously complicated.

ULTIMATE COVER 3 SmallThe book contains the ubiquitous and mandatory introduction; “What is roleplaying?” but it is well written and not patronising to old gamers or newbie’s. It then goes on to introduce BASH!, and quite helpfully for those who may have played the previous edition, outlines what has changed. This is really an indication of the general layout of the rest of the book, it is well structured and walks you nicely through; character creation, game play and mechanics before providing appropriate skills and powers references.

The second half of the book is the “Narrators Reference”. Basically a GMs guide with excellent guidance on running a campaign and the choice of a setting with great descriptions of the classic comic book “Ages” (Golden, Silver, Bronze, Iron) as well as Super Teens, Sci-Fi Fantasy, Pulp Heroes and so on.

Finally in the appendices there are some excellent character archetypes to help speed things along. These are presented by power scale, giving a range of Heroes and Villains ranging from typical “Mystery Men” through to true “Cosmic Heroes” (think Watchmen like Rorshach through to god like beings such as Galactus).

I have not yet had a chance to run or play BASH! but I will. I really like simple role play games that allow the players to concentrate on having fun rather than having to worry about complex rules. BASH! appeals to me on many levels and I intend to have some fun with it, watch out for postings of my first set of character pregens for BASH!

Basic Action Games

Basic Action Games was founded by Chris Rutkowsky in 2004, beginning with the launch of BASH! (Basic Action Super Heroes). The game was created while Rutkowsky was working for an after-school program and wanted to introduce rpgs to kids. Thinking that superheroes were the ideal genre, he looked for a Supers game that would be simple enough for kids– but was unable to find one. So he created his own, using very simple math, with a minimum of record keeping. While play testing, friends told Chris that this would make a fine mainstream supers game– and that was the birth of Basic Action Games.

DIME HEROES 1PG Character Sheet

Continuing with my collection of full page character sheets for use with the 1PG series of games published by Deep7 (www.deep7.com) and available online from Precis Intermedia Games (www.pigames.net). Attached below you will find another character sheet, this time for use with the excellent; DIME HEROES

The character sheet below is a standard PDF file, just click the icon to download.

DIME HEROES CHARACTER SHEET

FREE DOWNLOAD

BROADSWORD 1PG Character Sheet

As mentioned many times in previous posts I have become a really big fan of the 1PG series of games published by Deep7 (www.deep7.com) and available online from Precis Intermedia Games (www.pigames.net). Attached below you will find another character sheet for use with; BROADSWORD

The games are based on a standard and very simple system with the rules fitting, (more or less), on one page. They are ideal for ad-hoc play and lend themselves to light-hearted “beer & pretzel” style gaming. However, I have managed to get at least one group of people seriously involved in a 1PG setting culminating in a very long running campaign!

The character sheet below is a standard PDF file, just click the icon to download.

BROADSWORD CHARACTER SHEET

FREE DOWNLOAD

 

SHRIEK – THE GAME OF TEEN HORROR

As mentioned in previous posts I have become a really big fan of a series of games published by Deep7 (www.deep7.com) and available online from Precis Intermedia Games (www.pigames.net). Attached below you will find another character sheet for use with; SHRIEK: THE GAME OF TEEN HORROR

The games are based on a standard and very simple system with the rules fitting, (more or less), on one page. They are ideal for ad-hoc play and lend themselves to light-hearted “beer & pretzel” style gaming. However, I have managed to get at least one group of people seriously involved in a 1PG setting culminating in a very long running campaign!

The character sheet below is a standard PDF file, just click the icon to download.

SHRIEK: THE GAME OF TEEN HORROR

FREE DOWNLOAD