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Stars Without Number: Original Free Edition
by Goran E. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/23/2018 15:58:51

Massive work with lots of nice details. It is really designed with a sandbox look at the game universe and it gives a lot of help to maintain the game world feeling right)

System is accessible and coherent. Stats on 3-18 and the usual bonused at both end of that scale.

Character creation is limited to basic classes with a very "old D&D" feeling in a science-fiction setting.

Book gives plenty of ways to add things to a campaign (factions etc), like Traveller and its offsprings but in an easier way.

If i have a complain it would be that' i'd like to have more objects, artefacts and psionics

However, I really llike it.

Best free SF DL I got ever.

Will play it soon.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Stars Without Number: Original Free Edition
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Stars Without Number: Revised Edition
by John B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/19/2018 13:51:29

Stars Without Number: Revised Edition is the best kind of "2nd edition" that other RPG titles should aspire to emulate. Why? Because it did not throw away the baby with the bathwater. It is fully compatible with all the original SWN sourcebooks and adventures. The original Stars Without Number was an amazing but identifiably "indie" set of rules. Was it bad? No, it was great, chock full of great ideas, interesting systems of rules, exciting content. But as a gamer who has been around since the '77 basic set, I've certainly read my fair share of RPG rule books, and the original SWN was a very well done "budget" book that looked very good but was not the highest quality layouts and artwork I'd seen before. This new Revised Edition corrects all of that, in spades, and adds a ton of new excellent content as well. There were a few issues I had with the earlier system, and almost all of those minor issues I had have been corrected with the Revised Edition also.

This game starts with the basic OSR d20 core system of abilities we've all come to know and love (or at least understand), as a base, and then builds onto it custom layers of science fiction content onto it. So, no, you do not have "Fighter" but you have a warrior class that is similar to Fighter and you have an Expert class similar to Thief (but a far better way to handle the skills compared to 1e), and you have a Psychic to be the "magic user" to add some cool psychic powers to the game. And that's just for starters, there's tons of customization that can go into individual classes, and for the most part, you can develop the character in whatever directions you choose.

There's also some amazingly great GM tools included in this book that can be useful for anyone playing any type of science fiction space opera type setting regardless of the rules you're using. There's chapters on designing your own space sectors, with advise on handling interstellar trade, societies, diplomacy, alien physiology and psychology, robots and VI's (androids or droids with "virtual intelligence" or semi-sentience),how to develop alien, robot, or VI player character classes, factions, etc. Starfinder GM's may want to consider getting this just for its world-building and sandbox play assistance.

But is there anything negative to say about SWN:RE? For fans of lighter "indie" roleplaying games similar to Apocalypse World, Stars Without Number Revised Edition like it's original will feel a bit "heavy" in terms of game mechanics. There's a lot of little mechanics to either remember or reference in the book when they come into play. Not everything is handled by one simple 2d6 mechanic, although basic skill use is, so that's something that fans of PbtA games will probably appreciate. But for the most part, you will need amost all of your polyhedrals to play SWN:RE, and you'll want the handy GM's screen set up while playing so you can quickly reference various charts and tables that will be required to successfully judicate the mostly player-driven narrative. Since SWN is intended to be a player-driven sandbox style game, it has similarities with "indie" titles following the AWE / PbtA model, but there are more rules to handle all of the various situations that can come up in a science fiction setting. For example, starship design, starship combat, designing robotics and VI's and True AI's, hacking into stuff, psychic abilities, the effects of scifi hazards like vacuum, radiation, pressure sickness, poisons, disease (terran and alien), technology levels, etc. All of that may seem overwhelming for a PbtA GM, but you know what? It's there if you want to use it, and if not, you can chunk that and just let the narrative dictate the result just like always because it's YOUR GAME and as the GM you're the final arbiter of the results of any attempted action on the part of the player or non-player characters.

Revised Edition is FULLY COMPATIBLE with the supplements and adventures of the original edition of the rules, so you don't have to go re-buy all of your SWN books to stay current. Or if you are new to SWN, you already have available a lot of adventures and supplements compaitible with this new rulebook! And did I mention that the production values are way up? WAY UP, amazingly beautiful full page artworks and a full color printing that just pops right off the page and is absolutely gorgeous. Along with all the new optional content like Transhuman campaigns, AI's, Mecha, and even Space Magic, SWN Revised is an incredible value for the price and a gorgeous edition to any scifi fan's bookshelf.

I did participate in this book's Kickstarter, full disclosure, but I bought this book, and this is not a paid review. I honestly feel this is one of the best science fiction RPG rulebooks ever produced.

virtuadept



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Stars Without Number: Revised Edition
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Stars Without Number: Revised Edition
by Jon M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/13/2018 16:18:42

The production quality has gone way way up in this revised edition. There is tons of great full color art to inspire players and game masters. It adds great new character creation rules to let players really dig into customizing their character. It's a weighty tome with lots of tables for running a space sandbox for many years.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Stars Without Number: Revised Edition
by Jason S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/13/2018 11:38:39

Kevin Crawford had an amazing product with Stars Without Number and has surpassed that product with his Revised Edition. It is an elegent d20 system with some amazing classes. It is also quite easy to port in characters from other d20 systems with only some minor conversions. Stars Without Number: Revised Edition has amazing and easy to use resources for creating a universe full of adventure, and the stories that will keep both GMs and players coming back for more.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Stars Without Number: Revised Edition
by Ubiratan A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/12/2018 20:55:54

An excellent book all around! Lots of good material here, even if you're not interested in using the D&D-like rules that lie at the core of this game.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Godbound: A Game of Divine Heroes (Free Edition)
by William C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/12/2018 12:13:42

Looks like a really epic setting. I hope to be able to run a game with it before too long.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Godbound: A Game of Divine Heroes (Free Edition)
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The Smoking Pillar of Lan Yu
by Loren D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/07/2018 19:01:45

A fantastic little module. Very old-school in setup and presentation. It's got some mini-sandbox elements to it that could be blown up to cover 3 or four full game sessions.

ACTUAL PLAY EXPERIENCE: If you're willing to truncate the setup a little bit to get to the action, you can turn a lot of the "meet the people in the village" setup into startup box-text. A lot of people like that sort of slow-build intro role-playing (I'm one of them), but for the session where I ran this I knew I only had a single session. Fortunately, the setup is easy to truncate, and doing that makes it possible for you to do the presented dungeon crawl (repairing a geomantic ward in a ruined volcano monastery before it fails and brings on the destruction of the village full of nice natives) in four to five hours.

I ran it for a DCCRPG game, so I had to do a little stat conversion work, but that's not tough. There are three unique new monsters in there, but the quasi-AD&D stat lines are simple enough that swapping stats is easy. The encounters (random and keyed) are a blast, and the monastery itself is a tightly-written masterwork of dungeon design.

For free!? You don't even need to think twice. Download this puppy right the heck now.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Smoking Pillar of Lan Yu
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Stars Without Number: Revised Edition
by Daniel B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/31/2017 15:38:02

Loved the original, backed the kickstarter, couldn't be happier with the final product unless it included a pdf of sector/world forms.

SWN has the best tools to get the GM up and running that I have ever seen in a SF RPG....possibly in any RPG.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Stars Without Number: Revised Edition
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Stars Without Number: Revised Edition
by Josh H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/29/2017 23:43:32

I backed the Kickstarter so that the Stars Without Number (SWN) core book could be updated to this Revised edtion. Having read the updates and the final release pdf, I have to say I am pleastantly pleased with it. The artwork is great.

Kevin uses systems that can be pulled out and used in other games/systems. The faction system is pretty awesome and helps to give the campagin a living/breathing feel as the different factions will have their own goals/assests and those will change over time.

If you are not familar with SWN or SWNR do yourself a favor and pick up a copy..if there is a free version, but the paid verison also has a few extra sections.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Stars Without Number: Original Free Edition
by David D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/07/2017 12:28:46

'Traveler through the lens of a retro-clone'.

3 Classes to choose from (Warrior, Expert, and, Psychic). Lots of Gear, Starship Rules. A fast and simple core mechanic. All the basics are covered right there.

The best part of the product is the Planet, Alien, and Faction Generators and Rules. Very similar to Traveller in that regard but tweaked enough to make the purchase worthwhile for fans of that kind of game.

Also includes a very limited setting, and an essay on 'Sandbox Play' which is interesting if potentially controversial.

The art is black and white and pretty basic. The PDF is bookmarked



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Stars Without Number: Original Free Edition
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Scarlet Heroes
by Wes S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/02/2017 12:42:11

This is a really good solo/single player system. It is well thought out, with consideration given to all the aspects of one player combating a large number of foes. The weakest part of the game is the attempt at a setting (the World of the Red Tide) which is kind of a strange hybrid of Asian/Nordic/something else cultures that probably doesnt resonante with a western audience. This, of course, nuances the monsters and magic that is in the system to something that again, just doesnt resonate with me.

But...you can toss all that out and readjust the monsters from your D&D, Pathfinder, C&C or whatever and work your home brew campaign, so it is all good. Full disclosure, I play Castles and Crusades (mostly solo) and I haven't found any particular issue with adjusting to this type of a combat system. The instructions for doing so are quite clear and if you don't wish to spring for this module, you can go cheaper and buy the author's conversion set Solo Heroes, which covers the same ground for any generic D&D style system.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Scarlet Heroes
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The Storms of Yizhao: An Adventure for Godbound
by Dominik W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/15/2017 13:08:52

This adventure has a great story, is true to its sandbox origins and helps the GM to run an interisting and exciting adventure for their players.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Storms of Yizhao: An Adventure for Godbound
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Stars Without Number: Original Core Edition
by Dillard R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/29/2017 13:59:40

Perplexed by the System. Why do I need to roll 2d6 for skills and 1d20 for combat? System is full of inconsistencies, but don't worry the author is preparing a new Kickstarter for summer 2017. He has made lots of changes just visit his Google + page to see all the changes he is planning, including a total revamp of the system. Don't buy this. Download the free version and wait for the new updated version to come out.

The setting is a blast. The generators for worlds, factions, and adventures are great. Just get the stuff for free.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Stars Without Number: Original Core Edition
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Creator Reply:
Honestly, you vote down this game because it adheres to old-school mechanisms? You do realize this is an OSR game and that both D&D and Traveller were chief influences and that this game sort of pays homage to them, right? Sure, you are perfectly allowed to dislike it, no problem. But weighing this so highly against hundreds of pages of sci-fi goodness (which you seem to enjoy) is beyond me.
Stars Without Number: Original Core Edition
by mark b. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/28/2017 18:13:16
A fantastic system, with all the detail you would expect but creating a new cut above the rest feel. However, the author is currently revising these rules as of this review (July 2017) and the Beta Core rules are out there for you to download (quick google search to locate). It has, IMHO, polished any edges and is now looking to redefine who sits at the top of Sci-Fi RPG. Take a look, you won’t be disappointed.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Polychrome: Cyberpunk Adventure for Stars Without Number
by Christopher W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/27/2017 01:28:48

First off, this is a world book. I went in expecting something akin to skyward steel or relics of the lost but that's not what this is, but that's a fault of my lack of research rather than the book itself. It adds some new features to hacking but these are quite shallow compaired to the 2E beta and mostly ammount to examples of hacking activities and only really add the basic idea of a false sin from shadow run and while personally the idea of making a fake identity seems pretty basic to me, the examples/rules might help other people. The book also gives some expanded examples on criminal activity but again I personally find this stuff pretty obvious and you could probably find a larger amount of more indepth examples in a reddit thread. On a second point the cyberware was Seriously disappointing for a "cyberpunk" adventure. It has 17 implants/augments 5 of which of which are included in the 2E Beta and while this made them first it doesn't change the fact that they are now available for free. The most interesting one not in the beta isn't even in the cybernetic's section nor a general implant but rather an piece of equipment that constitutes the book's contribution to psionics.

All in all, I don't feel this is a worth while purchase now that 2e beta is out and mostly finished. I also feel you could probably get a larger quantity of equal or greater quality cyberpunk themed rules and equipment from free forums such as reddit, RPGGeek, or even /tg/



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Polychrome: Cyberpunk Adventure for Stars Without Number
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