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Codex Integrum Players Guide
by Mikko S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/19/2022 07:06:06

As others have already pointed out, this is a very detailed and well researched work. There are plenty of martial feats to showcase the differences between fighting styles. Although I find it somewhat out of place that there are 2 feats with japanese names, for example Nukitsuke could have been translated as Fast Draw, or something like that, and Niten Ichi, I guess, is a fancy way of saying Two-Weapon Fighting. Thenagain those english terms are probably part of the original OGL... Also the infamous Mordhau technique is sadly missing from the list ;) The skill list is very thorough, almost to the point of being exhaustive. All in all I find this a very useful resource to plunder for my own games, and there's even an appendix that gives us guidelines for adapting the system to other OGL games.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Codex Integrum Players Guide
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The Devil's Pass
by Stephen H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/27/2022 09:34:25

In short, I like it! Again, like Codex Superno, another work of the author's which I have reviewed, what I like most about The Devil's Pass is the ability to drop it into existing, potentially non-historical, campaigns.

SPOILERS WILL FOLLOW!

The Devi's Pass is a sandbox module for 2-4 players of levels 4-6 for use with OGL D20 system games. Set in n Late Medieval Europe, specifically the Franconian forest in, "what now is called Germany", it's written for a more low magic campaign and infuses elements of horror and fantasy into its historical setting.

Composed of a mico-module, Robbery at the Zur Höll as well as the main adventure, The Devil's Pass, the product features the goings on in a small valley populated by several groups both hostile and portentailly welcoming to the PCs.

First things first, this is designed to be a historical adventure. The breadth of detail is impressive and I think the author manages to give a great sense of history in a way that doesn't become dull lists of dates, or alienate readers who may (like I do) know less about the setting than the author.

I particularly like

Zur Holl

  • "Marta, absent-mindedly singing an old hymn". These are the details that bring NPCs to life!
  • the argument table on pg 14
  • the addition of the abandoned church
  • the detailed notes on how the bandit NPCs will behave

The Devil's Pass

  • sandbox aspect! This is great and, imo, how scenarios should be designed. I like the constraint of the valley and the various groups within it.
  • The maps are great too! They look easy enough to snip and blow up for VTT play.
  • "15th Century urban defensive walls, Worms Germany. The walls of Tettau are very similar to this." Great stuff, having visual details is always very useful.
  • Obviously I love "The Quiet House"! Unless I'm wrong this is a nod to The House on the Borderlands. I read William H. Hodgson at a young age and his Carnacki stories have been incredibly influential for me.
  • This leads into the SWINEMANAPOCALYPSE plotline. Great stuff and definitely the one I'd want to use.
  • the Witch is a great NPC
  • the author maintains the 'low magic' feel without making elements of the supernatural meaningless.

In all, I think the author has succeeded again! I love site-based and sandbox modules, especially those with enough constraint to make the PCs hesitate simply leaving the area. I also love modules that set up various power blocks, so to speak, and then let the PCs deal with them as they will. When I get around to running a game that could accommodate this module I'll include it.

The historical detail, like always, is impeccable. I think it can be a little overwhelming at times, but since GMs don't need to adhere to it to play through the module, I don't think that's a huge problem! Certainly, for people who run strictly historical campaigns, the details provided will be much appreciated.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Devil's Pass
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Codex Superno
by Stephen H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/21/2022 12:43:56

First and foremost, this book is packed to the brim with detail and is obviously a labor of love. It's written in a clear and concise style and if the idea of history texts bores you, and some certainly do, fear not, Codex Superno avoids any threat of boredom by making the history it discusses both accessible and, more importantly, easily applicable to your game.

Indeed, what I like most about it is the possibility of using bits and pieces of the spells and traditions it covers in the system of your choice.

I figure most people reading this are more than capable of converting gaming material to the preferred games and even if you don't want to use D&D derived systems (Codex Superno does, being compatible with the 3rd edition D&D SRD and related games) you can easily use the purely historical information it contains in your own games without any conversion whatsoever.

Codex Superno, with the book's emphasis on magic of, “the Late Medieval period in Central Europe”, generally breaks down the arcane into, “four distinct types or families”

Holy Magic: “the invocation of saintly miracles.”

Cunning Magic: magic derived from living Pagan and Shamanistic traditions.

Learned Magic: “the type of magic practiced by highly educated scholars.”

Clandestine Magic: “which consists of tidbits from the various other types of magic, and almost always the 'naughtier bits'”. The author notes that this is the type of magic most likely to draw unwanted attention to its practitioners and includes such legendary artifacts such as the Hand of Glory.

It adds several new Skills, like Mnemonics, Cartomancy, Astrology and, interestingly, Flyting (which, “can be used to undermine the morale of an enemy (take away MP), to chastise an evil spirit, or to simply hold one’s own in dangerous banter.”

I really enjoy the addition of Mnemonics, considering its use during the time period under review, and the rules for Memory Palaces, something which I find endlessly fascinating.

Codex Superno also contains an entire section on, “Magic and the Law,” and notes that, “the threat of legal prosecution, whether by the Church, or by seigniorial or municipal authorities was always a potential problem for any magic practitioner.”

This is a welcome addition, and gives a Game Master ample ammunition to demonstrate to their players that transgressive actions can, and perhaps should, have serious consequences for those who engage in them. While other D&D settings may have their own detailed rules on a given society's response to extra-mundane powers, the real-world reactions to such traditions make for interesting reading, no matter how rare they were in actual history.

This is especially interesting given that many historical practitioners were themselves in positions of religious power, which the book mentions by saying, “Historically, there is an irony in that it seems that some of the most perilously blasphemous deviltry was studied and practiced by members of the clerical estates: priests, monks, friars and nuns, scholars, ecclesiastical students and so on.”

The meat of the book is, of course, a list of Cantrips and Spells grouped under the four main types. Each Spell has a 'historical', 'semi-historical' or 'invented' tag, a useful bit of information for those who want to be strict with their historical games, and a Legal Status, which ties back into the Magic and Law chapter.

Each Spell also has a section on failures (every spell using this system needs a successful check to cast) which run the gamut from amusing, such as Fashionable Attire, whose failure causes the magician's clothes to split embarrassingly open, to the horrific, like Babe of the Woods, where the magician runs the risk of their dreadful servant turning against them.

Sections follow on Magic Artifacts, from Talismans to such legendary objects as the Lamp of Aladdin, Alchemy and Real Life Grimoires.

This review does not do the book justice. What the author has managed to do is to gather information from a wide variety of sources, many of them dense and confusing, and make it playable. The eye to detail here is impressive and, though I am not as familiar with the rule system used as I once was, I don't see any reason why it shouldn't run smoothly at the table, as long as the GM has a good understanding of the book's content.

There is a lot of detail here, which might be overwhelming for some, but from a first glance it doesn't look like ignoring some aspects of the system will cause the rest of it to come crashing down. This is a book that will reward repeated rereading and I think could be a worthy addition to any D20 game and any other game, providing the GM is willing to put some conversion work in.

I've missed a great deal in this short review, but I urge you to check it out for yourself.

Oh, and the book has a great index!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Codex Superno
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The Devil's Pass
by Christopher P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/11/2022 19:14:42

Full disclosure I also received a copy of this product to review.

I also come to this product from a d100 perspective and I would probably run this either using Mythras or Renaissance Deluxe.

This is a solid sandbox adventure that could also easily be bolted-on to an existing campaign set in a similar historical milleau. Codex Integrum does their homework, and this adventure is deeply informed and informative. If you're not used to a historical setting or don't have much of a background in either the Early-Modern period, the Hussite Wars, or Central European History, you're still ok, because the adventure gives you enough background to run as-is. A GM would benefit from acquiring other Codex books on the world of Central Europe in the 1450s, especially if they wanted to run this as part of a larger campaign. But as I said, it works great as a stand-alone sandbox adventure. What do you get? Lots of setting details, multiple great locations that you could use elsewhere, a stable of believable and playable NPCs, all of whom are worth keeping around for later encounters/adventures, as well as two emminently playable pre-gen characters with actual motivations and identities.

The adventure has two parts, a prologue of sorts, outside the valley, and a second part within the valley. The Prologue - By itself, this is an excellent interlude for a party of characters on the road in a dangerous/war-torn area. The Inn is a character as well and one could easily imagine it becoming a base of sorts for the players. The innkeeper is great and the adversaries are interesting enough to keep around if the players don't manage to kill them. It's also a great introduction/session 1 and is playable in a couple hours.

The Valley - Assuming the characters even get this far, there's a lot here that could stretch the adventure out over multiple sessions of play. The problems that the players need to resolve are not minor and there are a few situations that could result in a TPK, a particularly gruesome set of TPKs, actually. The Valley scenario will probably require a fair amount of negotiations and the players will need to find allies if they're to survive. Here you'll find several top-notch NPCs and plenty of stats for the various factional mooks. There are supernatural and horror elements, but the supernatural/magical elements don't need to dominate the story and aren't written in such a way that they couldn't be made entirely mundane. You won't need a spellcaster to survive this adventure. And here we get to something I really appreciate about the adventure - there's no assumed or desired outcome. The adventure is written so that whatever the players do, the GM has several options to spin it out other ways and build it into whatever they want to do next. Definintely worth picking up, especially for the price. The core Codex system is a d20 system, which, if you're playing PF or 3.x you'll get pretty quickly. I would specifically recommend this adventure for Mythras, RQ3, Renaissance Deluxe, WFRP 1st ed. or Zweihander.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Devil's Pass
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The Devil's Pass
by Leon P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/09/2022 14:05:32

-Open and fair: I volunteered to review this adventure so have received a free copy to do so. -Warning: This is spoiler light review, but I’m bound to slip a few details in as I go.

I’m also looking at it from the viewpoint of a Mythras player since I am unlikely to use the house system (although I am told it’s interesting).

The setting for the adventure is a low fantasy Europe but pleasantly central rather than western Europe and set in the 15th century (1452 C.E.) which is certainly a nice change from the majority of European based or inspired games. There is magic but rational explanations and substitutions can easily take that out.

I’m going to split this review into several parts starting with the reprinted adventure (from the players guide) ‘The Robbery at Zur Höll’, the titled The Devils Pass and probably a ramble of final thoughts at the end.

‘The Robbery at Zur Höll’ Described as a mini-encounter I’d say a good GM can get a very full intro out of this if they don’t just work along the dots and play to the social interactions. The scenario has two well described NPCs to roleplay off, like Hans the tavern keeper and the main antagonist, but also the location and situation which are characters in their own right.

Two pre-gens are provided and make good examples of setting PCs.

The Hook for the adventure is a kidnapping, lovelorn lad gets snatched by notorious robber knight, the PCs are agents for the young noble’s family, not rescuers mind, but to deliver the ransom to the bandit lord that has him.

The encounter is situated at Zur Höll, an inn located in a burnt-out hamlet…taking a step back, the overall setting is Franconia (Medieval Germany) after a series of wars and battles…relatively isolated from the main country. The inn itself is well renowned and intact despite the surrounding hamlet being burned out and is the backdrop for this ‘encounter’.

Avoiding too much detail the PC’s, who you will recall carry a great deal of money and have horses, are besieged by bandits and must overcome them to save their, and the inn folks hides.

There is a second act where the innkeeper whose staff have been spooked ask the PCs to investigate his cellar, this leads to the discovery of a secret tunnel and a foreshadowing encounter for the next adventure (although you can run without leading to that).

This is a simple introduction to the setting, but it works well and I’ll tell you why, in bullet point.

The Good

• It starts in an inn, for us oldies where else. Seriously the inn forms a very real character in its own right, I’d encourage a bit of research to really sell the feel of this essential medieval locale, but the writers give you more than enough material to work with and Hans is a solid NPC to interact with. • It has a tight but broad hook that several different character types can use all at once if not using the pregens. • It ties easily to the follow-on adventure and gives a nice base to work from if the players want a feeling of continuity and attachment. • The fight with the bandits involves range and melee and can move between several locations from the inn, stables and courtyard. Given its gaming roots it’s nice to not just see a slugfest. • The baddies are easily identified so the players shouldn’t have too much moral ambiguity to muck things up. • The most important thing though is the author paints a setting and presents a historical period in enough depth and detail that the GM should have no issues presenting this for his players. At least on an introductory level.

The Bad • The inn employees, except Hans, are cardboard and could use some padding. I genuinely don’t know that you’d care if Pavel the stable boy gets crucified (he doesn’t). • The second act I have a small issue with, and I’ll explain as best I can. The innkeeper who owes the PC his life and inn ask the strangers nearly murdered there to investigate ‘mysterious’ goings on in his cellar. No matter how I squint at it I can’t see why your PCs would do this (maybe that’s a reflection on my players), remember they have a ransom to deliver. One of the suggestions to encourage the PC’s is have one of the undeveloped NPC’s steal the ransom in a sudden but unexpected betrayal…the ingrate. It felt very forced, the cellar could just have easily been introduced as an escape route, you discover a tunnel to an old church, or used as a means to ambush the bandits from behind and introduced organically that way.

Mythras Thoughts *So as a Mythras player I think this is a great intro scenario.

The setting is interesting (I look forward to reading the Codex Baltic Volume 1 & 2), it has character in the sense that it has its own personality, there is conflict and flavour unique to the place and time. It’s a good choice for a backdrop.

The hook is a roleplay delight and I’d encourage my PCs to have passions towards the kidnapped or his kidnapper!

The combat is just the sort to make me nervous, in a good way, and although not set up with Mythras in mind a Mythras GM is going to appreciate the possibilities of the inn (particularly if they expand it to include more guests and bandits maybe a possible siege. It can be a real dynamic location given the chance.

We move on…*

The Adventure Continues! Upon leaving Zur Höll to continue their mission the PC’s find their way blocked due to various armed conflicts till they find themselves diverted and trapped in a small valley ‘The Devils Pass’. Devils Pass is in a bit of a bind and the only hope the PC’s have of leaving are to resolve this

It’s probably very important here that the GM explains to the PC’s the high likelihood of the forces fighting killing them on sight or discovering the money and killing them for that. The tunnel from Zur Höll is suggested to also potentially lead here. I’d do this as the inn makes a great base of operations.

The only concern I have with the valley is it can potentially feel railroaded getting the PC’s there if you’re not careful. It’s actually a very realistic option for the characters in the middle of war-torn Franconia but players and their pesky sense of agency, so be careful to establish the issues early on and well.

Devils Pass is not a linear adventure, rather a mini sandbox with several plot threads to explore, expand upon or ignore. I think it’s unlikely the players will ignore them as the author has placed an interesting conflict in the valley that needs resolution if the characters are to achieve their goal of getting further along their journey.

The village of Tettau is effectively under siege and its inhabitants have concealed/blocked the entrance/exit to their valley to avoid attracting further troubles from the roving band of warring bandits and nobles.

You get a very detailed look at the region, the inhabitants and the history of events to date. Again, the author gives the GM a playing board and the equipment to really embed the players in the location and period.

The valley has several factions and major NPC’s who are very well detailed in personality and goals although I suspect unless your PCs are unpleasant at least two will be obvious enemies but even the villagers and their leader the Abbess aren’t guaranteed allies.

From a plot point of view the main goal of the PC’s will be getting out of the valley and to do that they’ll need to deal with the valley’s problems. Since these problems universally involve large numbers fighting it out shouldn’t be solution number one.

The author offers several well detailed encounters and possible plotlines, more than enough for this mini-sandbox, random encounter tables to help fill in what happens inside or outside the valley for roaming players are also present. Tettau is a stopover but unless its problems are resolved its more Hotel California.

The Good • Great location with plenty of flavour, history and ambience. Your players should enjoy getting to know the valley and its inhabitants. Good and bad. • NPC’s! Better, much better. A variety of NPCs with enough detail in personality and motive to give the GM plenty to work with. • Good plots and events. Unless you’re playing with pure dice rollers the players should be at least a little intrigued by what’s going on and have a good reason to get involved. The relationship between the NPCs is also good fodder for roleplay. • Some solid GM advice is popped into the text about how your players could suicide if stupid. I would prefer sidebars as some of its important to highlight for novice GM’s.

The Bad • Not really a bad as to be fair we are talking a small company, but layout and art are only a solid C, decent but unlikely to blow you away. That said the layout is functional, and the art used (stock?) is appropriate and evocative. I was happy to hear and see a sample of the upgraded maps coming and this could push the score to a C+. I love a good map. • The players could feel railroaded into the valley, as I said it’s a completely realistic and logical outcome for events, but this should be called out page 1 and some guidance included.

Mythras Thoughts *If you play Mythras the presence of gunpowder weapons will be a sobering thought on trying to bully your enemies or potential allies, their numbers likewise will discourage suicidal assaults. The level of magic is very suitable to Mythras and easily converted using Folk Magic and Theism.

For a game like Mythras the encounters and situation present players with a variety of characters ample opportunity to shine. Social, combat, exploratory inclined can all find rooms here.*

Overall I really like ‘The Devils Pass, it’s a solid sandbox in an interesting location and period of history.

Overall I’d score this adventure 8/10 It presents a solid situation for characters to interact with and explore but with room enough for the GM to expand and make its own. The writer puts sufficient detail for the non-historian to present the setting to the players and also be entertained themselves.

I think it a glowing recommendation that I have purchased the Medieval Baltic books and would happily run a game (or play one) in the setting presented.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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The Road to Monsterberg, Crypt of the Raubritter
by Achilles A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/23/2022 16:47:34

This is a fantastic module for a variety of reasons and a lot of different play styles could make good use of the content found here.

The Road to Monsterberg, Crypt of the Raubritter uses the Codex rulebook and the Codex superno magic system. If you haven’t already picked up those rulebooks, I highly suggest doing so. That being said, a creative GM could still make use of this module without needing to put too much elbow grease into making the DC’s or monsters fit their core system. Of course, using the system this module is designed for is recommended.

The Codex core rules and soprano magic system are designed for a low magic setting. If you’re running that kind of game, do yourself a favor and pick this book up. Writing interesting modules without the use of high magic elements can be difficult, but in this module the developers prove that they are up for the challenge.

The setting is based off of real-world 14th-century Europe. And as you explore the various twists and turns the landscape offers, you realize you want to know more about this world. You want to know who lives in all of these keeps and castles. You want to know what’s really going on in that haunted forest. You want to know what happens next. The game is full of rich detail and intriguing mystery which will engage your players and incite their curiosity.

The format of the module is easy to follow and well organized. The writers list out a series of events in what they refer to as “episodes”. Each episode contains a plot point that the players need to experience in order to progress to another location and adventure. However, these episodes don’t need to be in order. They wrote the module so that it doesn’t matter where the adventurers go because there’s something interesting wherever they end up. They can progress to another location and further the story without feeling railroaded.

This episodic system makes it easy for the GM to remember locations and events while still being able to shuffle the plot points as the players move around. Every GM knows that you can’t count on anything your players are going to do. This module gives you all the tools necessary to stay on your toes and one step ahead of those irksome adventurers.

Because of this flexibility, any gaming table could take advantage of this module. However, if you are running a low magic campaign with a darker and more realistic style, you need this book. In fact, if you’ve never run a low magic campaign but would like to give it a try, this book would be ideal. It’s so well organized, that you could almost use this as a “how to guide” for running a low magic world.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s an intriguing story, but it’s an invaluable example of solid writing for what is a challenging setting.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Road to Monsterberg, Crypt of the Raubritter
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Codex Superno
by Achilles A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/20/2021 11:29:17

Codex Superno offers a truly superior magic system for a low magic game.

Low magic games can be tricky to run. If you’re taking a game like Pathfinder or Dungeons & Dragons, and trying to make a grittier, realistic, low magic campaign, you’re often forced to restrict magic progression. That can be a little bland.

Codex Superno lets you build a world that is rich, interesting, and full of truly unique plot hooks and potential campaign arcs. In the introduction, the author explains how they took a deep dive into real world historical records of magic, astrology, alchemy and herbology, as well as historical documentation regarding religious magic.

Yes, that’s right, the Catholic Church really did practice a special brand of holy magic!

The book maintains some of the basic mechanics that you will already be familiar with. Your low level spells from STR content still function in the system. However, they also give you a list of original spells that is rooted in real world books and grimoires. They flesh out ritual magic by providing actual instructions to rituals that reflect the historical accounts and beliefs of people that practiced magic centuries ago.

If you’re thinking about a low magic campaign with a grittier feel, you absolutely have to pick up this book. If you’re playing any of the other Codex systems, you absolutely have to pick up this book. If you enjoy historical myths and legends around magic, sorcery, and witchcraft, you absolutely have to pick up this book.

As I read the text, I developed a dozen ideas for various storylines and settings centered around this magic system. I haven’t run a low magic game for a while, but I’m excited to start one now.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Codex Superno
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Codex Martialis: Core Rules (2022 Edition)
by Achilles A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/16/2021 06:23:26

I got about halfway through the first page of chapter 1 when I blurted out, “Damn, this is going to be a fun game.”

In the Codex Core Rule book, you’ll find a dynamic game system that prioritizes strategy without sacrificing speed or pacing. Not an easy feat to accomplish, but they did it. Within the book you’ll find a system for armed and even unarmed combat. There is a large number of rules to this game, but you will find these rules easy to understand, remember, and intuitive. That’s why the Codex system can center on strategy without ending up bloated or slow. Your strategic options are numerous but easy to understand and fast to execute.

Codex focuses on armed combat and historical martial arts. This game offers a few options any GM should take seriously. First, it’s very modular. This system can be effectively adapted and combined with another TTRPG. This would be particularly useful for a low magic setting, but not, by any means, restricted to that type of game. Any homebrewer that enjoys tinkering with game mechanics should pick up this book.

If you have been playing the same TTRPG for a while and want to try something new, the Codex Core Rulebook is worth a read. A series of modules and adventures can also be purchased with this book. Codex isn’t just a alternative combat system. It’s a total game system that can, as an option, be adapted and assimilated by other game systems. Still, it’s totally playable independently.

One of the unique features of the Codex Core Rulebook is its focus on historical European martial arts. The book uses authentic illustrations from historical combat manuscripts. These illustrations offer the reader insight into the Codex world. You have a sense of realism with this combat system, and when combined with the illustrations of real combat techniques as well as the strategic nature of the rules, you get an elevated sense of immersion. Just reading the rules gives you a sense of what it would have been like to live and fight in medieval Europe.

Another element the writers of Codex ingeniously employed in their system, dice focused gameplay. As opposed to modifier focused gameplay. You build your character with different features that can be chosen as you level up. However, instead of simply adding a modifier to your character’s stats, you get more dice or can use your dice more strategically. I believe this is a trend that the TTRPG industry is headed towards, and Codex is there now. Rolling dice is fun, it’s suspenseful, it’s why we play tabletop games. Just like any other RPG, you build your character, but you don’t lose the excitement that comes along with the element of chance.

Codex blends strategy, immersion, and excitement in a new approach. It can be adapted into a campaign you’re in the middle of or a system that you love but needs some freshening up, but it also manages to stand alone as an independent and fully functional game. Any GM can find something worthwhile in the Codex Core Rulebook. This is easily one of the best gaming systems I’ve read this year.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Codex Martialis: Core Rules (2022 Edition)
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Codex Martialis: Core Rules (2022 Edition)
by Sean D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/03/2021 11:31:34

This book is my favorite RPG supplement for any subsystem. It fixes every issue I've had with other combat systems, and every original concept is a winner.

We all have our preferences as to what gets abstracted and what gets simulated, but these rules are right in-line with what I want in combat: Armor as damage reduction, individual defensive values for weapons, un-nerfing of shields, combat experience contributing to your AC, and more. The addition of the "onset" range to combat is brilliant (AFAIK, this is a Martialis Codex original idea), as is its implementation. Giving each weapon separate bonuses for onset range and melee range fixes one of my biggest gripes about traditional RPG combat. I've always found it unacceptable that a guy with a dagger can face off against a guy with a long sword, and the dagger-weilder's chance to get in for a strike against his opponent would be no different than if his opppnent was also weilding just a dagger. The rules for grapple-range combat are also of the "that's how it should be done" quality.

My only criticism is that the rules could be clearer at times. I've had to compare the same rule on different pages once or twice to get exactly what the rule is. But (one of?) the author has been helpful in clarifying, and I wouldn't let that hold you back from buying this book.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Codex Integrum Players Guide
by Iason-Eleftherios T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/19/2021 11:43:40

TLDR: If you like low fantasy and history-based RPGs GET THIS NOW!

Codex Integrum is an incredibly well-researched tool to create RPG adventures based on a late medieval theme. It can easily be adapted and integrated in other d20 systems, or campaigns that want to have a realistic medieval or Early Modern tone to them. However, where the Codex Integrumm Player's Guide really shines is if it is used solo or in combination with other Integrum supplements to create low fantasy, historical or pseudo-historical campaigns. Unlike the often frustrating characters of other games that do that, here you do not play a rat-catcher, but your character is always useful and not in a narrow context.

The various rules provided all support the creation of a narrative that is equally realistic and immersive. Melee combat is at the core of the Integrum titles and this book is not exception. The depth of rules, background and tables provide a well-curated, modular toolbox for the GM to pick what they want to implement in each game. If you want tools to create a new campaign that feels 'medieval' or want to add such elements to an already existing game, the Player's Guide is an invaluable tool. At the very least it will give you awesome narrative ideas. If used in depth I foresee a rabbithole of wikipedia history pages.

If you do not like medieval themes or martial arts you are probably here by accident and this game is not for you.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Codex Integrum Players Guide
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Codex Martialis: Core Rules (2022 Edition)
by Iason-Eleftherios T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/19/2021 11:15:23

TLDR: Best realistic combat rules to be used with their source game or easily convertable to d20 game systems.

Codex Martialis offers a unique way for running combat. As a professional historian dealing with martial culture and armaments I found the rules the best around in reflecting dangerous and complex actions that have consequences for the actor and their target. As an RPG GM I fell helmet over sabatons for this system because even though it looks complex it is straightforward, easy to learn and teach, and above all it provides a framework for turning combat into a narrative of its own. The book can be used with its mother game (Integrum) or easily adapted to d20 systems with micro-adjastments. I have used it now for a few months to spice up a DnD 5e campaign for a few months and players love the depth added to melee combat that has gone away from actions to simply hit and has turned into a series of calculated maneuvers that nearly always results in memorable combat narratives. The main axes of the book is the use of a dice pool over actions, that dictate the type of maneuvers and their effectiveness as chosen by the players. The second identifying feature is the 'Feats' designed for the system that allow melee characters to feel trully expert in perfmorming some actions and facilitate more complicated maneuvers. Finally, the weapons segment is amazing in diversifying how some of these objects were used rather than treating them as reskins. There is genuine thought behind why certain weapons fit the build of characters and how they can be used tactically. Optional rules for injuries are included and in my opinion they are a great working framework for use in most d20 rpgs that want some realism but do not want to reach the other end of unrealistic over-the-top gritty-gruesomeness that is often prevalent is some systems.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Codex Martialis: Core Rules (2022 Edition)
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Codex Martialis: Core Rules (2022 Edition)
by John S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/21/2021 17:19:36

I am a long time DM, who plays a fantasy campaign, but with a nod towards history. I appreciate the fantasy aspect of role-playing, and I certainly love a well placed fireball. However, I've always tried to connect the history, to the combat. So, for years I created my own alterations to the DD system, to accomodate my wants. i like when the fights really mean something, and are a highlight of our gathering.

Because of my interest in historical combat, I ended up getting involved in Hema. So, it's a wonderful discovery to find a system based upon these historical techniques and manuals, and written by someone that actually is inolved in the community.

It's a lot to chew on, but it achieves my interest in making the fighting sequences more climactic and chess like. And to see all the terminology from the medieval manuals as actual terminology in this book is exhiliarating.

I prefer to focus on storylines, so when I do get to a fight sequence, I am willing to put in the effort to make it significant - not simply some quick rolls, and off to the next pack of kobolds.

I kind of have my own fantasy elements, so I don't know if I would go with every aspect of this book. I might take what I need to add to my current campaign. But, if I opt for a full historical campaign, down the line, this seems like the way to go (even though there is still a magic system within Codex).

As a side bonus, the historical aspect of this book is compelling from a purely historical perspective. It feels like I am actually learning about the tried-and-true methods of how combat actually unfolded, and classes of people from the past, places, etc.Then to add this to my existing campaign is seriously fun!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Codex Integrum Players Guide
by John S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/21/2021 17:16:47

I bought this, on a whim, along with the fighting guide. I was fascinated by the combat system, and so it made sense to dive in with both.

The research that has gone into this, is evident. So, it is a fantastic resource for those that appreciate adding historical aspects to their game. I use a fantasy map, and use many of the classic character types, but this has given me ideas flushing out my universe.

i am not ready to run a purely historical setting, but I have always operated my campaign with the Tolkein mindset of one foot in fantasy, one in reality. So, I temper my fantasy elements, but I have no problem adding rules and material based in history.

So, this is a wonderful compendium to get material for just about any style of campaign. Definitely for history folks, but this would work well in a fantasy world as well - I'd recommend for either setting.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Codex Integrum Players Guide
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Codex Martialis: Quick Start Guide
by John S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/21/2021 16:46:54

This system is wonderful, but it's a lot to consume. The reward is great if you like tactical combat, with an emphasis on medieval history. Quick start guide is helpful to chew on the wealth of research that is within the combat system. So, it was the quickest way to learn if I could integrate this into my campaign. But, since I am Hema practicioner, I had a feeling I would:)



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Codex Martialis: Quick Start Guide
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Core and Campaign Rules bundle [BUNDLE]
by John S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/21/2021 16:42:13

I am a big fan of this system. So, this bundle was a great way to dive in. If you don't use the entire system, you'll have plenty to cherry pick from.

Even though I have a fantasy element to waht I do, the historical aspect of this hit the spot for me!

I may go full on down the line, but for now, I cherry pick the great stuff. Worth it for the effort that clearly has gone into these books.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Core and Campaign Rules bundle [BUNDLE]
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