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BEAN! The D2 RPG Second Edition
by Curt M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/07/2011 15:49:55

I'm a huge Tunnels & Trolls fan, so the Bean system works for me, especially since I figured out it can be played with M&Ms! I like the new passages on custom builds and vehicle combat, but Bean still lacks the "pick a Monster Rating and go" aspect of classic T&T. I like the option of that kind of simplicity.because it allows for the details to come in the roleplaying, and for even the most schedule-challenged GMs to make of the weirdest creatures they can think of on the fly.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
BEAN! The D2 RPG Second Edition
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Cellars of Castle Cassoulet
by Billiam B. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 05/14/2011 09:08:59

Yummy, yummy, yummy! Solo gamebook style 75 sections (plus a page of wandering monsters) using the Bean! rules - but also enjoyable without the D2 based system.

Cheap ($2!), silly, witty, love it.

So much for "constructive" reviews, what I really want to shout is:

"ZOMBEANS and GOBLEANS! "

:D

Bb http://bit.ly/rpgblog



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cellars of Castle Cassoulet
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BEAN! The D2 RPG Second Edition
by Robert L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/12/2011 21:17:59

This second edition is the first edition with a bunch of extras thrown in. So before I get into my 2nd edition specific stuff, here's my review of first edition (which still applies to this edition):

///////////////////////////////////

" Had my first game of this just a couple days ago. Niiiiice.

Very simple, very easy. The gameplay is extremely smooth with a heavy focus on story and no focus on rules, as the rules seem so natural that they just 'happen' and are very easy to remember.

When playing, you're working with very small numbers - 4 and under. That's stats, that's the 'beans' (dice), hit points, etc, etc. As odd as this sounds, it works and doesn't feel at all unnatural.

Saving rolls/contests/whatever you prefer to call them, are again, so simple - both for the GM to decide upon, and for the player to understand and act upon.

Again, I come back to the word "natural". Once you start playing, it all just works so naturally. And again, it works.

For only $2, you've got to give it a try. Seriously.

Oh....and the artwork. Just look at the cover. That pretty much describes it. Gotta love it. :) "

///////////////////////////////////

Ok, and now on to the 2nd edition specific review:

1st edition was $2. This edition is $3. And yet, it's had a lot of stuff thrown into it. All the 1st edition stuff works great as-is, and none of the new stuff is 'mandatory' to use, but dang you get a lot. Here's a list:

Health points - If you're one of those who don't think that being hurt in combat should make you less physically able to do things, then use these Health points. These allow you to track damage without having to modify your 'Body' attribute. I prefer using the Body attribute, but I can see how this allows the game to fit into the preconceived rpg concept that most people have, coming to this game from other games.

Skills, skill bonus - You can now have a skill as narrow or broad as you'd like, and can use the bonuses from the skill to aid you in feats that employ your skill.

Non Lethal combat - stun or knock out your opponent without killing them off

Mounted & Ship to ship combat - Yar! Avast ye pirate types! Cool addition. I used the mounted combat recently while flying on a dragon. Awesome. :)

Custom archetypes - warrior, rogue, and wizard not enough for you? Branch out!

More spells - nuff ced

Beastiary - the number of beasts is more than doubled!

Updated character sheets - same size but 3 pages (by folding and cutting)

9 pre-made NPCs

More artwork. And truly, the artwork itself is worth more than the extra dollar paid. I love this guy's artwork.

I don't know what else I could say. The value of what you get far outweighs the measly extra dollar between the editions. And the value and gameplay of the entire game for $3 far outweighs the value we got for $15 back in the early 80's.

Get it. You won't be sorry.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
BEAN! The D2 RPG Second Edition
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BEAN! The D2 RPG Second Edition
by scott m. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/21/2011 11:06:19

It's not often that a game knocks my socks off. After reading through BEAN! and playing a couple of solo modules I'm convinced that my socks are not only off, they are somewhere in the next area code. The thing is, it shouldn't even be this good. The mechanics require tossing coins or beans or anything with two sides and there are three character types to choose from, which is severely limited. But the game's author and artist Jeff Freels has made it so easy to customise that complaining about the lack of archetypes is basically just admitting that you have no imagination.

In essence, Freels has mashed Tunnels & Trolls (he's a veteran T&T artist, don't you know?) and modern 'dice pool' games into a streamlined tabletop gem. It's almost Risus simple, and it works a treat.

Your character can be one of three fantasy archetypes: Wizard, Warrior and Rogue. Unlike Tunnels & Trolls, the Rogue is more of a thief like in Dungeons and Dragons than a rookie magic-user. You fill three stats with 9 'beans': Body, Mind and Spirit; getting an extra bean in your chosen archetypes prominent attribute. Your hit points are equal to your Body and Defence begins at zero. You then get as many skills as your main attribute (which you can make up) that will help lower the difficulty level in certain situations. That's pretty much character creation, aside from rolling for copper pieces and buying whatever you can from the equipment list.

Mechanics are a simpler than simple Simon's simple son. In combat each combatant chucks their beans simultaneously according to their Body + weapons and the one with the highest number scores hits equal to the difference of the rolls. It's very Tunnels and Trolls, yet it's simpler and chucking beans around is worryingly addictive. Contested rolls work the same, each participant rolling on an attribute to see who wins. Challenge rolls are also used, where the player has to roll a set number of successes depending on the difficulty of a task.

The second edition made a few changes to the first, but not many. Firstly the book is more streamlined, making it easier to read. There are hower a couple of formatting issues that need to be addressed, but otherwise it's fine. The main addition to the book is the inclusion of mounted and vehicle combat, which is intuitively simple. There are also a few more creatures and spells included in the new edition, but otherwise it doesn't overhaul any rules.

There isn't a setting for BEAN! although Jeff does mention that even though it's a fantasy world there are portals that spew out anything a la Rifts. So it's completely possible that one moment you could be killing Gobleans (yup) and the next you're in a motorcycle chase with a troll carrying an uzi. Because of this you can set BEAN! in any genre, substituting archetype names for something more appropriate and by jove it'll work.

Jeff includes a short solo adventure at the back of the book to introduce you to the rules. It pretty easy, but you'll want to run all the archetypes through to test them out and go different routes through the story. With Ken St Andre's Death Phrogg Attack solo, it looks like BEAN! is going to be a great source of solitaire roleplaying fun.

BEAN! is a silly game, so those looking for a serious game probably won't want to pick this up, although it's so rules-lite that it could be easily adapted into a gritty game. It's also incredibly cheap, so there's no real excuse not to buy it, even if it's just to take a look at the rules.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
BEAN! The D2 RPG First Edition Errata
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/19/2011 02:01:21

The title is somewhat of a misnomer. It's not errata. Errata, strictly speaking, is a list of errors and their corrections. A long, dry list -- an excellent cure for insomnia.

This includes a nice thank you (for playing his game), skills, clarifications, and instructions on how to create your own Archetypes. A step beyond the original rules, this should have been called "a Companion," or "Expansion," or "Supplement." But it's a minor quibble. And it's free (as of this writing)!

I think thanks are in order to Mr. Freels. He's created a rules-lite game and given us a supplement (and other adventures) for free. He's created something that burnt-out grognards and their children can enjoy, and for that, hats off are in order!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
BEAN! The D2 RPG First Edition Errata
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Gone To The Dogs
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/19/2011 01:49:26

A lighthearted old-school style adventure, quite well-written and formatted, easy to understand how one scene led to the next. There's also a scripted event where one of the player characters, well, let's just say they get to play something other than themselves. :P

The puzzles are easily solved, and rather obvious clues to them are provided. "Gone to the Dogs" provides a bit of extra tension if the other characters want their buddy back!

The only problem I had was with the lead-in. While in many tournament and old-school adventures there was a scene in the beginning where it was narrated why you'd be out of money and taking this job, I found it a bit thin. My players would be (A) not interested in taking a rather mundane-seeming job and (B) would object to being told what their characters were doing before the adventure began.

I rewrote the beginning a bit, to provide more of a hook, but YMMV.

Other than that, this adventure is solid, and should provide an evening or two of fun. And that's really what it's all about, right?



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Gone To The Dogs
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Death Phrogg Attack
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/19/2011 01:39:45

An interesting little romp through BeanWorld. It's easy to play through, and humorous at times. A little short, but otherwise a pleasant diversion. I don't think Ken St. Andre has ever written anything I didn't like. :)



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Death Phrogg Attack
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Escape From Khosht
by Soren K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/18/2011 11:42:59

Escape from Khosht is a solo adventure for Tunnels and Trolls, 5th edition. Without giving too much away, your character is one of a trio that has just swiped the fabulously valuable Eye of the Beast, a diamond the size of a hill giant’s fist. The theft doesn’t go unnoticed, and soon you’re running for your life, just happy to escape the city of Khosht with your hide and your soul intact.

I’ve been critical of a lot of the Tunnels and Trolls solos that have been recently published. They look to be quickly written, incredibly short, and not well thought out. The writing itself, is uninspired, and quite flat, leaving little to spark the reader’s imagination.

None of that is true in this adventure’s case!!!!!

I love a lot of things about this adventure!!!!

One, the author engages you right away, with engrossing prose that sets the scene marvelously. It is easy to tell the writer, Andrew Greene, was enthusiastic about writing the adventure and it shows in each of the passages.

Here is just one example:

Radnoff’s voice is pleading. “We tried to heist the Eye of the Beast. We need your help.” “Help?” Ludor asks, offended. “Leave here at once!” Radnoff’s mouth falls open. “What?” “Get away from my house.” Ludor looks up the street. “You hear those hounds? On the other end of their leashes are Night Patrolmen, man-beasts who are more bloodthirsty than the dogs they command. If they realize you’ve been here, they’ll kill me.” Ludor leans over the fence and snarls, “But not before I kill you.” A dark, murderous glare trickles into Radnoff’s coal-black eyes. “Have you forgotten your oath, Old Man?” he asks between clenched teeth. “To the deepest hell with the oaths I took as a thief..."

That was an intense moment. For me, passages like that lent a lot to the overall enjoyment of the gamebook, and made me feel immersed in the experience.

Second, you’ll meet a lot of intriguing NPCs and monsters in this adventure. There are no standard, “vanilla” monsters to fight here, such as goblins or orcs. The NPCs come alive with personalities. These are not cardboard cut-outs just waiting for you to kill them or be killed by them.

Some technical comments: the adventure is for mid-level characters, 9th level or thereabouts, with approximately 100 adds. You can be play by any of the classes in T&T 5th edition: warrior, wizard, rogue, or warrior-wizard. A nice set of “house rules” are provided at the beginning of the adventure that handles thrown weapons, and most of the spellcasting in the game. There are also options provided in the text when some of the other, more exotic, spells can be cast. Three pre-generated characters are provided at the back of the book, a warrior, rogue, and wizard, as well as details on two of the game’s NPCs, for use in other adventures.

What some people may not like: The passages aren’t scrambled. The options, particularly at the beginning, follow on after the other. This isn’t usually the case in solo adventures, but if someone is going to cheat and read ahead, they’re going to cheat regardless. Also, the font could have been larger, making reading a bit easier.

Those things, however, have nothing to do with the writing. The quality of writing is the main thing in solo adventures, and there is quality here in SPADES!! Add that to a beautiful cover design and exceptional pieces of art scattered throughout the book by Jeff Freels (including a nice rendering of the lovely NPC, Chi-Chi) and you’ve got a winner.

In short, pick up "Escape from Khosht," even if you don’t play Tunnels and Trolls, but are a fan of the gamebook genre. There is a lot here to like. Did I mention it's fee?

Score: 4/5



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Escape From Khosht
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BEAN! The D2 RPG
by Robert L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/11/2011 01:35:34

Had my first game of this just a couple days ago. Niiiiice.

Very simple, very easy. The gameplay is extremely smooth with a heavy focus on story and no focus on rules, as the rules seem so natural that they just 'happen' and are very easy to remember.

When playing, you're working with very small numbers - 4 and under. That's stats, that's the 'beans' (dice), hit points, etc, etc. As odd as this sounds, it works and doesn't feel at all unnatural.

Saving rolls/contests/whatever you prefer to call them, are again, so simple - both for the GM to decide upon, and for the player to understand and act upon.

Again, I come back to the word "natural". Once you start playing, it all just works so naturally. And again, it works.

For only $2, you've got to give it a try. Seriously.

Oh....and the artwork. Just look at the cover. That pretty much describes it. Gotta love it. :)



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
BEAN! The D2 RPG
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BEAN! The D2 RPG
by Hamilton R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/17/2010 12:51:54

Bean's game system is almost too simple; OK for a pick-up game but may not support long term play. Book has a good, solid, easy-to-understand layout. The game is easy to learn, fun to play. Bean is worth the price as long as it stays under 3.00. Your bean count (pardon the pun) may get a little high when tossing beans for results. (Need room to toss all those beans...)



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
BEAN! The D2 RPG
by Michael L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/30/2010 12:48:47

What a game. I bought it about 5 hours ago, read the rules at break time, played the enclosed solo adventure at lunch and I can't wait to get home to try out some ideas. What a way to get the STORY moving and not be bogged down in mechanics. Comparing to other systems, I think this is VERY ideal for solitaire advenutres (other systems work very well also, but this was just so fast to get rolling - sorry, are bad jokes alowed?!). I think there are just enough rules to keep things on track as well as to get the ideas flowing for stepping "beyond" those rules. It is written clearly (although the Magical Resistance part took me a re-read to be sure). Also, I like how the Healing mechanics work (well, the Attribute Restoration mechanic really). Great job - looking forward to more!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
BEAN! The D2 RPG
by Andy J. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/23/2010 14:46:12

This game is fantastic. It's great as an introduction, it's also great for 'proper' play, it'd be great at conventions. In fact it would be great everywhere. Spread the word, the word is Bean!

It's easy to learn, it's also easy to explain. It would be difficult not to have fun playing this game. You can create your Bean Character in minutes and be Tossing Your Beans straight away.

You may think you need to move on to other RPGs but if you do, you won't have as much fun.

I tip my hat to Jeff Freels, the man is a genius.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
BEAN! The D2 RPG
by Billiam B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/20/2010 15:39:44

Worth it for the adventuring bean illustrations alone! Wonderfully compact and well written.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
BEAN! The D2 RPG
by Ken S. A. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 11/20/2010 13:19:02

I thought Tunnels and Trolls was a good game, but Bean has it whupped. Faster to read, easier to learn, funnier in concept, Bean is great for fantasy or any other type of role-playing adventure. Bean is the quintessence of role-playing. My only question is where am I going to get all the beans I'll need to actually play the game? The brown ones that I usually eat with hot dogs are way too slimy to be rolling about on a table. --Ken St. Andre



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
BEAN! The D2 RPG
by Steve L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/17/2010 22:06:27

I haven't had as much fun with an RPG since I ran OD&D back in the '70s. BEAN! puts the emphasis back on active imagination, and off of min-max rules lawyering!

Throwing a "bean pool" recovers some of the original novelty of rolling exotic polyhedrals!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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