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Mind's Eye Theatre: Werewolf The Apocalypse
by Alex S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/24/2017 22:33:12

I've had this book for a month, and just beginning a campaign with it. It is already falling apart. I'd assume I was just unlucky if it wasn't happening to 3 other people's books as well. It's a massive book, the binding isn't up for the task.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Mind's Eye Theatre: Werewolf The Apocalypse
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Mind's Eye Theatre: Immersion Secrets
by Andrew D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/25/2017 11:50:31

Whether you're just starting or been playing for years like I have this is a great book on how to make your game, and everyone else's game, better. Mechanics and everything are important but the whole point of LARPing is the community. This helps build one that will really let you have fun. Worth the money. Easily.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Mind's Eye Theatre: Werewolf The Apocalypse
by William M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/28/2016 13:05:02

So a quick history: White Wolf published a LARP (Live Action Role Play) variant of their Old World of Darkness (oWoD) series in the early and mid-90s dubbed Mind’s Eye Theater (MET). By Night Studios (BNS) recently acquired the right to make new LARP materials from oWoD and have set out to create newly revamped systems that are based today incorporate more recent societal themes. This is a review of their newest book in this reimagining, Werewolf:The Apocalypse.

The Story

In the original setting, the world ended around 2000. To allow for the game to be more modern, BNS had to work from the point where the world would have ended, forward, and continue to build the world. This was a monumental job that could have fallen flat if they had gone in the wrong direction. Instead, they hit it out of the ballpark.

The story moving in to the current era is plausible, interesting, and makes for a large amount of story hooks for any storyteller. The feeling of something akin to an Apocalypse happening was preserved. At the same time, the authors moved both the game and the setting forward. I feel the most impressive thing they did was characterizing the cyber generation, especially in a game historically defined by hatred of technology (and sometimes progress). The inclusion of two political factions (The Concordat of Stars and the Sanctum of Gaia) working both together and against one another while fighting the same war also adds a new angle that storytellers can use if heavy meta-politics are their players’ jam.

Most importantly to me, some of the tribes have moved forward to become fully fleshed out, living groups of people. Black Furies accept all women and cubs of both genders born to the tribe, the Wendigo aren’t solely just angry native people, and in general, the setting incorporates globalization of our culture in a very appropriate and respectful way. I’m not saying that if you hadn’t dug deeper in to those tribes I mentioned before you wouldn’t have found life and spark, but this is an area where I feel the previous LARP books did a disservice. I feel like BNS went above and beyond to truly give new players a glance in to a living, breathing cultural organization of people, especially ones with more sensitive themes.

Mechanics

If you are familiar with rock-paper-scissors, you can play this game. Mechanically not much is changed from BNS’s MET: Vampire: the Masquerade (VtM). You have test pools determined by your sheet, you throw rock-paper-scissors, you compare your results and then things happen. Some elements are new, but if you are familiar with the other book, this book is an almost seamless transition. It’s also obvious that this is BNS’s second book, because concerns with MET: VtM have either been corrected or elaborated upon (backgrounds, etc.).

The only mechanic that is truly new, and I feel makes the game stand out from its companion, is the Quest System. Players develop a Quest, work together to determine requirements, and then, regardless of success or failure, collectively create a shared narrative. This emphasizes player cooperation and agency, while reducing storyteller stress. It’s a great example of a system promoting positive play and I am very impressed with it. I have heard a lot of Vampire storytellers that want to incorporate it in to their game and I look forward to that.

Relevance to New and Old Playersrokea

I would like to preface this section with the fact that BNS talked with the community at large about what they liked and disliked about Werewolf, and it’s pretty obvious that they took those suggestions to heart in their development of the new book. They made a lot of changes to make the game more palatable, easier to run, and easier to play.

My old group of players has an adage. “Forget what you knew before, read through the book and that’s what you have.” There is a lot of difference between the original Werewolf and this one. But these changes aren’t bad, especially considering the backstory of the book. If you like Werewolf, you’ll definitely find the old Werewolf you love deep inside the heart of this book, as well as a whole new world to explore

For newer players, this book is a great introduction to the genre. With the inclusion of definite mechanics and story hooks that allow for inexperienced players to play as Kinfolk (the human relatives of werewolves), and Cubs (newly changed werewolves), and also to become actively involved in the story, even as low powered creatures (I’m looking at you Den Mother), even the greenest oWoD player can truly become involved and captured by the system and story. Don’t try and read the whole thing in one sitting though.

Storytellers are given a lot of information and a lot of meat to sink their fangs in to. The Umbra section alone could be an entire 5 year chronicles. This makes the book great for someone trying to run a game, especially if paired with its sister book, Vampire the Masquerade. There are 750+ pages of pure information to sink your teeth into and you have all the time in the world to get to know it.

Art:

This needed its own section. The art is amazing, representative, evocative, and while the style may be slightly strange at first, it meshes well. There are depictions of strength and serenity in both genders. It’s some great stuff.

But… it’s not perfect.

My major gripe is that there are firmly more depictions of men than women (by a factor of maybe ¼ from a quick count through the book) and there are a few ‘sexy poses’ that women are in that you don’t see the men paralleling (I’m looking at you page 735). There’s nothing wrong with sexy, but similar poses could have been employed in some of the male images. Also the bewildered and bored look that the two women in the Pentex scene respectively have (page 610) hurt my soul a little bit compared to the businesslike and serious look the men have.

These seem like petty gripes, but I hold BNS to high standards in regards to being open and accommodating to the community, and art is one of the major ways that the gaming community has majorly failed to do this in the past.

Overall, the art is stunning, and despite these issues the full color renderings of them make me want an art book with more.

Portability:

So there is one Were-Elephant in the room I’d like to address. The original LARP books were small and portable. This book is not. While the 750+ pages are absolutely glorious and give you all the information you could ever need, it’s also a monster of a book. There are ways around this (printing and creating subsection binders, e-readers, etc.), but those are hoops that the consumer has to jump through themselves. Also, the size does seem to mess with certain e-readers and PDF readers, so a B&W option of the pdf at some point in the future would be appreciated.

Final Verdict

This is an amazing book. It’s a great re-imagining of Werewolf that addresses and deals with a large amount of the issues that the community was vocal about. It’s obvious that the two years of work that both BNS and the community put in to it have paid off and I feel like this is definitely going to revitalize a once dying subset of the LARP community. They have taken a part of oWoD that I loved but was always hesitant to suggest due to problematic issues in the original source material and morphed it in to something I would suggest to most, if not all, of my LARPing friends to try out at least once.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Mind's Eye Theatre: Werewolf The Apocalypse
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Mind's Eye Theatre: Werewolf The Apocalypse
by Jason O. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/25/2016 19:45:18

A great set of updates for the LARP rules of Apocalypse. The downtime system updates are great and hope they migrate to the Vampire rules as well.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Mind's Eye Theatre: Werewolf The Apocalypse
by Ivan . [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/25/2016 17:36:58

I liked the book, it's 200 pages more than the Vampire book at the same price, and the base mechanics, downtime system etc. have been polished in the meantime. Plenty of setting info, but a lot of it has been changed since tabletop version.

Very compatible with Vampire book, unlike previous WtA offerings - it has a nice chapter about mechanical interaction of both creatures, and a huge NPC section including even more World of Darkness creatures. Excellent status/political system, and plenty of additional info in the core book (like Fera) which would usually be found in some supplements. Great buy.

I wrote a more comprehensive review on my blog: http://www.crolarper.com/2016/10/minds-eye-theatre-werewolf-apocalypse.html



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Mind's Eye Theatre: Vampire The Masquerade
by Charles S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/21/2016 17:02:44

Yes, it brings back all the fun of playing MET back in the 90s. Yes, its cleaned up, less confusing, and a much smoother system then what you remember. No you won't miss anything they took out. Yes, its all here in one book. No, there really is no need to fix anything or write up a bunch of house rules.

Yes, finally!

BNS has shown all the other publishers that have had thier turn with the WoD material how make things right. It really is that good.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Mind's Eye Theatre: Vampire The Masquerade
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Mind's Eye Theatre: Vampire The Masquerade Quickstart Guide
by Charles B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/27/2016 23:27:41

It's not a replacement for the full book and it isn't supposed to be. It does well to give new players anought info to create a new character and the most basics on the combat system. It's also useful for ST and it puts the combat close at hand.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Mind's Eye Theatre: Vampire The Masquerade Quickstart Guide
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Mind's Eye Theatre: Werewolf The Apocalypse Omega Slice Playtest Rules
by JEFFERY W. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/29/2016 13:47:59

This is a well done character portion of the BNS Apocalypse, love the mechanices cant wait for the full book to be done



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Mind's Eye Theatre: Werewolf The Apocalypse Omega Slice Playtest Rules
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Mind's Eye Theatre: Vampire The Masquerade
by Lance L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/09/2016 14:59:47

Fantastic version of the much beloved Vampire LARP -- you can tell that a ton of work went into getting this (mostly) right. Love what they did with status. Love what they did with the overall game mechanics. Don't love what they did to a couple disciplines, like possession and several of the Tremere paths, rituals, etc. But certainly worth the purchase. Got both the hard cover (from local game store) and the PDF from Drivethru RPG.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Mind's Eye Theatre: Vampire The Masquerade
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Mind's Eye Theatre: Werewolf The Apocalypse Delta Slice Playtest Rules
by David L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/31/2016 23:58:22

This book is one of my more favorite and Infact I'm looking for groups to play this. For right now though I didn't seem to have much of a problem with it



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Mind's Eye Theatre: Werewolf The Apocalypse Delta Slice Playtest Rules
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Mind's Eye Theatre: Werewolf The Apocalypse Delta Slice Playtest Rules
by Steve L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/20/2016 14:45:04

A new and much needed extension on the gama slice. These new systems make every tribe "Combat effective" but removes the incentive to play a Get of Fenris. Teses slice make play testing possible but leave many questions open. The new system is worlds better than the old system since it was a combination of native American mystic believes meets captain planet. The rank system left more questions than answers. But I do like the fact that of you spend rank in social situations it hurts your re-Nown pools for rank advancement. It is not mentioned if fleeting Re-Nown is like fleeting status in masquerade where it refreshes after each game session. Now in gaining re-nown ST's should be very careful in eliminating player bias. If Mr. Get kills the worm by himself but is not part of the OOC "cliq" he gets no re-nown at the next moot. Since these games are designed to all be played in the same LARP at the same time using the same rules systems I have reached out to the By Night team with mechanics questions and have never gotten any response. I was hoping that the delta slice would answer these questions but as they say "No dice". A prime example of this is when a gift is stat +skill+rank vs. Stat + WP +rank.....do vampires substitute generation of rank?. Also the editing on these slices is horrible. I have to read something 3 times to infer a meaning on some basic rules sections. In the gama slice the merit "Grandmothers touch" pg 285 has a mention of an int focus that has nothing to do with the mothers touch int focus..."Grandmother’s Touch heals 2 points of damage, instead of the standard 1 (or 3 points of damage, instead of the standard 2, if Intelligence-focused)." but the mothers touch int focus reads..."Focus [Intelligence] You can use this power on any target within a number of steps equal to the number of dots in your Medicine skill" pg 220. This is an example of these issues. The Curse is a strange and troubling mechanic since any garu must sit in his little mystic hiding hole to kill all rage gains for 24 hours before interacting with humans....a little strange but OK. The silent striders have a 2ed rank gift that makes a 6th gen vampire act like a 13th gen? Thats a little powerful for a 2ed rank gift? But then again the Follower of set 1 pt merit of personal cult that grants 30 free XP in backgrounds is OK? Speed beyond thought is elder celerity and for a 5th rank gift its a good match. The star gazers 2ed rank gift is just obscene and this gift in on par with some 5th ranked gifts. Their 5th rank gift is a victim of bad editing. when you spend the ancestors background ..is that a permanent expenditure or is it a temp thing like fleeting status? Now kinfolf would be nice to play and needed PC's in a fuly encompaceing LARP but can they have acces to merrits and if so...which ones. Overall the new rules are good but the editing is realy bad and leaves a lot of wide open questions. Hope this helps and I really hope these questions get sorted out.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Mind's Eye Theatre: Werewolf The Apocalypse Gamma Slice Playtest Rules
by Steve L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/22/2016 12:18:28

Overall its a good system but I encountered a few editing errors that will need to be corrected. An example is the explanation of the merrit Grandmothers touch. Also there is ZERO mention of how to gain Renown and how that system even works. Just how much each rank cost. The part where each Auspice gaining a 6 dot cap in one abality is great as well as that dot being cost X1 as opposed to cost X2. The main thing that needs to be crystal clear is that when this book is a finished product and out in players hands that these rules can be instantly be put to use in a vampire game..so far this look like that will be the case. The tribes are ballenced as far as what they all need to do unlike the old system which turned into a version of "Captain Planet combined with native American mysticism" As always the Wyrm is to cool for words but I imagine that the new book of the wyrm will be another book entirely.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Mind's Eye Theatre: Werewolf The Apocalypse Gamma Slice Playtest Rules
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Mind's Eye Theatre: Vampire The Masquerade Quickstart Guide
by David P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/17/2015 06:12:07

A poor insight into the clans is provided in this otherwise well done intro kit to Mind's Eye Theatre for Vampire the Masquerade.

While the write up for the Ventrue and the Brujah leaves little out those are the only two clans which are presented in this book, as such it provides a mediocre insight into the Jihad and the camarilla.

Otherwise this free resource is a solid introduction to the MET for VtM.

The developers could have made more space by cutting out the equipment section and trimming down the disciplines so as to only include the first few levels, also the merits and flaws could have been cut to make space to represent the other five camarilla clans if not all thirteen.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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Mind's Eye Theatre: Werewolf The Apocalypse Beta Slice Playtest Rules
by Ralph E. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/04/2015 12:56:36

This book is very clear about its purpose and provides a lot of detail about the setting. Character creation is straightforward and most rules are easy to understand.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Mind's Eye Theatre: Werewolf The Apocalypse Beta Slice Playtest Rules
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Mind's Eye Theatre: Werewolf The Apocalypse Beta Slice Playtest Rules
by Mattheau F. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/04/2015 12:10:58

This game is still in development and I am already in love with it. This game is fun and the developers love feedback.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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