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d20 Modern Core Rulebook (d20M)
by John M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/26/2021 17:36:38

I already own 2 paper copies of this book, but wanted to add a digital version. This is a great system and book, but this is a poor scan. This pdf is human-readable but throughout there are whole chunks of text that have not been OCR'd correctly. This makes it useless for a screen reader or other accessibility tools. The issue is the background image on the gutter side column of the page. There is not sufficient contrast in the scan for the optical character recognition software to distinguish the text from the background image, so 2-5 words are missing from each sentence throughout several paragraphs on almost every page. I have paper copies of all the other d20 Modern, Future, Apocalypse, Dark Matter and Call of Cthulhu books and I am buying the OEFs as they become available. In comparison the scanned d20 Modern Core Rulebook is sub-optimal. It is not even on par with other scanned and OCR'd books I have bought from the DND Classics line. Hopefully, WOTC will do the right thing and re-scan with better settings.

Update: WOTC re-scanned and updated the file on 2021-07-28. Note, this is a scanned copy that has been OCR'd. The filesize on the new version is about double the size (122MB) of the previous version. This has resolved the missing text. It took a while, but it has been fixed.



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[3 of 5 Stars!]
d20 Modern Core Rulebook (d20M)
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Domains of Delight (5e)
by Elise C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/25/2021 14:50:28

The writing is excellent and really brings the Feywild to life and has already sparked some fey inspiration and ideas. This is a great tool for DM's interested in building their own Feywild domains of delight or archfey. There are some cool DM tools for adding flavor to your Feywild campaign such as whimsy weather patterns, fun fey character quirks, and the ins and outs of tricky fey contracts. The art and layout are beautiful and 100% interested in a softcover printing of this supplement to add to my D&D book collection!



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Domains of Delight (5e)
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Locathah Rising (5e)
by Lorenzo R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/23/2021 02:34:24

Questa avventura suggerisce ottimi spunti per una one shot o mini campagna “in fondo al mar”, permette di interpretare una nuova razza “poco giocabile” per le consuete avventure nei FR e crea l’occasione di approcciarsi in modo serio al combattimento sottomarino. Purtroppo è in tutto e per tutto un Dungeon sottomarino, se vi piaciono i dungeons fa per voi. Se non vi piacciono i dungeons, il DM deve lavorare molto per renderla un più appetibile. Ecco la mia recensione.



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[3 of 5 Stars!]
Locathah Rising (5e)
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Star Frontiers: (SFKH4) The War Machine
by Thomas V. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/20/2021 08:35:07

Module #2 in the beyond the Frontier campaign. it not quite as good as the 1st & 3rd adventures in this campaign but has the unique freature of the PCs boarding and destroying a major enemy ship. Blowing stuff up is fun.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Star Frontiers: (SFKH4) The War Machine
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d20 Future (d20M)
by Thomas V. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/20/2021 08:23:08

The prodcution values are quite good but there is a lot of objectification of women in this document but then there was less of a concern for that when this was published that said I would not introduce my teen daughters to this product for our gaming as I just would not want to suggest to them that I agree with the presentation of women in this. I've had great frustrations with D20 modern and D20 future and typically tell people I have a love hate relationship with D20. For the most part i avoid D20 modern and D20 Future these days.



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[2 of 5 Stars!]
d20 Future (d20M)
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Star Frontiers: (SFAC3) Zebulon's Guide to Frontier Space
by Thomas V. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/20/2021 07:49:46

What a relief to get a reprint so I could retire my 40 year old copy.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Star Frontiers: (SFAC3) Zebulon's Guide to Frontier Space
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Star Frontiers: (SFKH2) Mutiny on the Eleanor Moraes
by Thomas V. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/20/2021 07:39:30

This was another great Star Frontiers module. I loved numerous features like the creative salvaging of equipment and doing the McGuiver/kit bashing of repurposed tools and equipment from salvage. Players have a ticking clock they must beat which ramps up the pressure. It also kicks off the one Star Frontiers campaign that included classic RPG action plus ship to ship action in a desperate bid to stop the dreaded sathar in a plot and enslave a species and threaten the PC's civilization.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Star Frontiers: (SFKH2) Mutiny on the Eleanor Moraes
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Star Frontiers: (SFKH1) Dramune Run
by Thomas V. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/20/2021 07:34:15

Love this adventure so glad to retire my 40 yr old copy and have a fresh reprint.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Star Frontiers: (SFKH1) Dramune Run
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Star Frontiers: (SFAD5) Bugs in the System
by Thomas V. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/20/2021 07:33:09

Great Star Frontiers adventure. Happy to have a reprint of this old module so I can retire 40 year old original!



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
Star Frontiers: (SFAD5) Bugs in the System
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Star Frontiers: (SF4) Mission to Alcazzar
by Thomas V. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/20/2021 07:31:24

Happy to have a reprint of this old module so I can retire 40 year old original! One of the better Star Frontiers adventures, it also happened to be part of my first PBP campaign so lots of nostolgia there.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Star Frontiers: (SF4) Mission to Alcazzar
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Dragon Mountain (2e)
by Sam S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/17/2021 12:36:48

While overall I'm very happy with the product, I do have a couple of criticisms. The first is that it wasn't available in hardback. I think something this size should be offered in that format as it would contribute to overall longevity of the product. Also, it was offered for Night Below so why not this. The second criticism is that the cover of the first booklet was used as the cover for the product (instead of the original boxed set cover) and therefore, in addition to 'Dragon Mountain', it says 'Book I', even though it is clearly the whole of the original boxed set. This also means that the product blurb which would have appeared on the back of the boxed set isn't recreated for the back cover of this product. It would've been nice to see, at a glance, what the adventure was about, etc. Then, there are the issues noted in this review: https://www.dmsguild.com/product_reviews.php?products_id=17086&customers_id=1106941. However, as I said, I am very happy with the product overall.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Dragon Mountain (2e)
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B2 The Keep on the Borderlands (Basic)
by Edward C. O. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/16/2021 19:11:00

i am SO glad that there is a POD, sure you can get the Goodman Games version, but something about having just the thin module is just cool.

anyways, IMO, one of the best modules to run, it's a sandbox, enough content to get the ball rolling and enough things for you to add to the world and setting.

i ran this module using Pathfinder 1e and it works out really well, and while my players died due to being overran by lizardmen, they wanted to play it again.

the POD is great quality too, so i reccomend you all to get this and B1 as well.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
B2 The Keep on the Borderlands (Basic)
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B2 The Keep on the Borderlands (Basic)
by Iain B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/11/2021 12:17:23

Just received my POD. Beautifully put together, with the main map in the original blue shade put in a double-page spread at the back of the book instead of the inside covers, which is much preferred, thank you! Very pleased with the quality.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
HR1 Vikings Campaign Sourcebook (2e)
by Timothy B. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 09/08/2021 12:16:56

Originally posted here: https://theotherside.timsbrannan.com/2021/09/review-hr1-vikings-campaign-sourcebook.html

HR1 Vikings Campaign Sourcebook (AD&D 2nd Edition)

For today's review, I am only going to consider the PDF version of this book from DriveThruRPG. I lost or sold back my original in one of my moves or collection downsize. I will mention details from the physical book as I remember it, but my focus is on the PDF for the details. In most cases the material is 100% the same, the difference coming from the fold-out map, which is separate pages in the pdf.

HR1: Vikings Campaign Sourcebook (1992), by David "Zeb" Cook. Illustrations by Ned Dameron and cartography by David C. Sutherland III. 96 pages, black & white with full-color maps.

The first book of the Historical Reference series covers the Viking raiders of Scandinavia. It is not a separate game world per se, since it deals with Pagan Europe after the fall of Rome, but it is a fantastical Europe where dragons fill the seas, troll-blooded humans walk among us, and somewhere out there in the wilderness, a one-eyed man wanders the land.

Chapter 1: Introduction

This chapter covers the very basics, starting off with what people usually get wrong about the Vikings. These guys are not Hägar the Horrible or even the interpretations of Wagner. They do point out that "Vikings" are also not really a people, but a lifestyle that some people engaged in.

This section also covers how to use this book, specifically how to use this book about Vikings and the history of their raids with the AD&D 2nd Rules. We get into more specific details in the next chapters.

Chapter 2: A Mini-Course of Viking History

Starting with the raid at Lindisfarne in 793 CE the book covers a very basic history of the Northmen's lands, the lands they raided, and their culture and history. The focus here though is through the lens of an AD&D game, not a historical introduction. The book is clear on this.

Details are given, with maybe extra focus on England and France (though they are not called that yet) but that is fine. There is a very nice timeline running across the top of the pages of this chapter that is rather handy. The time period, roughly 800 to 1100 CE agrees with most of the scholarship on "Viking History" so that works fine for here as well.

There is a nice list of settlements and cities the Vikings targeted. Not a full list, but it gives you an idea of how much of Europe, Northern Africa, and even parts of Asia the Vikings would roam.

There is a page or so of suggested readings. Likely the best at the time. The chapter does set you nicely to explore these ideas further.

Chapter 3: Of Characters and Combat

Here we get into game writing proper. We start with what races you will find in a Viking-themed campaign. Obviously, we are talking mostly humans here. Humans can gain a "Gift" something that makes them special such as "Rune Lore" or "Bad Luck" or even a Seer. There is a new "race" the Troll-born. These are stronger than average humans due to troll-blood in their veins. They get a +1 to Strength, Constitution and Intelligence but a -1 to Wisdom and a -2 to Charisma. They have Infravision and are limited to 15th level in their classes. They are not born with Gifts.

Next, we cover the changes to the Character Classes from the PHB. Fighters on the whole tend to be unchanged as are Rangers and Thieves. Classes not allowed are Clerics, Paladins, Druids, and Wizards, though specialty mages are allowed if they are Conjurers, Diviners, Enchanters, Illusionists, Necromancers. While this could be a negative for some I like the idea of limiting classes for specific campaigns. Two new sub-classes of the Warrior are added, the Berserker and the Runecaster. Both do pretty much what you might suspect they do. The berserker is actually rather cool and while the obvious roots here are the barbarian and berserker monster from AD&D 1, there is enough here to make it work and be interesting too. Runecasters know runes as detailed in the next chapter.

The "forbidden" classes can be played, if they are outsiders.

Lip service is given to the detail that the Vikings were predominantly men. Though new archaeological finds are casting some doubt that they were exclusively so. This book does give some examples of how warrior women were known. They emphasize that player characters are always exceptional.

There is a section on names (including a list of names), homelands, and social class.

In the purist AD&D 2nd ed section, we get some new Proficiencies.

Chapter 4: Rune Magic

This covers Rune Magic. An important feature of Viking Lore. What the runes are and how to use them in AD&D 2nd Ed terms are given. A lot of these are minor magics, say of the 0-level or 1st-level spell use. I personally don't recall them being over abused in games, but they are a really nice feature to be honest.

Chapter 5: ...And Monsters

Monsters are discussed here, starting with which existing monsters can be used from the AD&D 2nd Monstrous Compendium. Following this some altered monsters are given. For example, there is the Gengånger which is a zombie with some more details.

Dwarves and Elves are given special consideration, as are trolls and giants.

There is not however any "new" monsters in the AD&D 2nd Ed Monstrous Compendium format. We will get those in the Celts book, but that is next time.

The section is split with a "centerfold" map of Europe.

Chapter 6: Equipment and Treasure

Vikings were Vikings because of the treasure they sought. They also had the best ships in Europe at this time. So let's spend some time with these.

We start with a section on money. For the game's simplicity, these are reduced to a couple of systems. Coins are usually categorized by make-up and weight. There is some good material here really and something that most games should look into.

Treasure covers the typical treasures found. Also, treasure was a central piece of Viking lore; it was how chieftains paid their men, it was what they stole from others, and it was also how they were paid off NOT to steal. Some space is given to Magic Items as well. This is an AD&D game after all. Some "typical" magical treasure is discussed and some that are not found at all. A few new items are also detailed.

Chapter 7: The Viking Culture

This chapter gives us are biggest differences from a typical AD&D game. For illustrative purposes, we follow a young Viking, Ivar Olafsson, in a year of his life. Now I rather liked this because it gave me a character situated in his life and culture. While it is not the most "gamble" material it is good background material.

There is a section on Social Ranking and a little more on the role of Viking women. I think after 6 seasons of watching Katheryn Winnick kick-ass as Lagertha in Vikings, this section will be read and cheerfully ignored. That is great, but this bit does talk about, and support, the image that Viking women had it better than their counterparts in the rest of Europe.

We also get into the sundries, quite literally; Food, drink, homes, farms, and trade. There is a section on religion with lots of nods towards the AD&D 2nd Ed Legends and Lore.

Chapter 8: A Brief Gazetteer

AD&D 2nd Ed is celebrated not really for its advances in game design or rules, but rather the campaign worlds. This book, and this section, in particular, is a thumbnail of why these celebrations are merited. Or, as I call it, just give me a map! This section is more than a map and maybe not as much as the famed Mystara Gazetteers, but the relationship is not difficult to pick out.

This covers, rather briefly (as it says in the title), the lands the Vikings would roam to. And there are a lot of those! In addition to the lands of Europe, Africa, Asia, and yes even North America, we get the fantastic worlds of the Vikings. If I had done this book this would have been Chapter 2 or 3 at the very least. This chapter is all too brief in my mind.

We get a longship design at the end and in the PDF what was the fold-out map.

--

So in truth a really fun resource. The AD&D game material is there, but this book could be used with pretty much any version of D&D or even many other games. 3rd Edition/Pathfinder players might lament the lack of Prestige Classes, but the Rune MAgic section can be easily converted to a Feat system. 5th Edition Players would need to work the Berserkers into a Barbarian sub-class/sub-type, but that would be easy enough.

It is not a perfect resource, but it is really close. I am really regretting selling off my physical copy now.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
HR1 Vikings Campaign Sourcebook (2e)
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One Grung Above (5e)
by Jonathan S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/06/2021 16:40:59

honestly, I only got this for the Grung race writeup and it was well worth it IMO.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
One Grung Above (5e)
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