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City of Judas
by Lars L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/05/2017 11:09:53

I read the rules and it looks like ApokalypseWorld set in a dark fantasy setting. While DungeonWorld was more like D&D with the ApocalypseWorld rules this "hack" catches more of the gritty spirit of AW in a low fantasy setting. You have also supernatural creatures like in DW, but more in a demon and "twisted animal" way (carnivorous elephant and skorpion-men). General the tone is more mystery and less heroic monster fighting.

I also like that you have a setting that keeps the group together as all PCs are members of mercenary group called Iron Fist and are send on missions from their superiors. In this way it could be played as a "Monster of the Week" in a dark fantasy setting or "Dogs in the Vineyard". I also like the "dark side" idea of the rules. Through some moves you get taint, which brings you in contact with demons. You can profit by it, but you will be currupted if you keep using it.



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[5 of 5 Stars!]
City of Judas
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Evolution Pulse - English Edition
by Daniele D. R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/22/2016 08:45:35
The setting

It’s 30th-century world: humanity discovers this ancient artifact, the Black Box, which was made by the entities which created our reality. Who exactly are these entities and which was their goal is either a McGuffin or to be found during your game sessions, if you like to.

The world before scientists opened the Black Box to study it was futuristic and well-ordered by the existence of several Artificial Intelligences which look after every business. Architecture is futuristic and inspired to the works of Tsutomu Nihei (e.g. Blame!).

After the opening of the Black Box, the basic rules of our reality went to hell. It happens the rules of our world are bound to the heartbeat of mankind; so, with the instructions of the Black Box released, the whole world began to reshape itself, causing a real apocalypse in just a few moments.

Moreover, other entities, made up of whatever is the opposite of our reality, showed themselves in our world. This guys are called Hekath and their real goal is unknown, but for now they are killing people and kidnapping individuals with pure DNA. Yes, in fact, since their appearing, there are no more pure-DNA humans, but humanity has become LostH.

AIs and Executors

In this apocalypse, the former AIs, which looked after humankind, launched their emergency protocols and nuclearized wide parts of the world. At the same time, they began to save pure-DNA humans and brought them to areas known as SafeZones.

They also created their own agents to fight the Hekath invasion and to save mankind: Executors. The PCs are all Executors, Obscura or a small group of LostH.

You can play a Proxy, an Executor of Nirvana, which was the AI overviewing the health system. Now they are well equipped and have well kept facilities. Nirvana promised them a future with a perfect life, should they gain sufficient credit with it. To give them purpose, Nirvana has put in their heads artificial memories of the life is theirs to conquer. The truth is there is no such future: when they reach 100% credit, Nirvana resets their memories and the “game” starts again and again.

You can play a Hydrah, an Executor of Olympus, which was the AI overviewing all the labour robots. Now they are more machines than people, having Nirvana framed them as cyborgs. They have problems in remembering how were their former lives or even how was to be a real person.

You can play a Hyonos, an Executor of Eden, which was the AI overviewing religions an media. Now they are zealous soldiers kept in artificial bodies which can reshape themselves at will. The fact is Eden has downloaded their conscience in these artificial bodies to make them more fitting to the war against the Hekath. But this process is irreversible and they are doomed to become mad over the time, because, if their body is now strong, their mental health is hindered since the moment of the download.

You can play an Obscura, who are LostH with a surprisingly high percentage of Hekath DNA, to the point they are not (at least simply) humans, nor they are LostH. They are Obscura, indeed: hybrids half LostH and half Hekath. They have terrible powers, but they also appear as monsters both to Executors and LostH. Their problem is to find a new goal and a new place in the world.

You can also play a group of three LostH. Yes, you understood well! Whereas you fellow players will play a single Executor or Obscura, you will play a group of three PCs, bound together by the same high concept and issue. They are fragile, yes, but they are also the most human and versatile characters.

The rulebook

The rulebook is a graphic masterpiece. Alberto and Daniel, the two authors, wrote and drew the ruleset together. The setting is presented in cool ideas and story hints to the players and the GM. There isn’t a really fixed setting: in your campaign, Hyonos can be in a way, whereas in my campaign they can be totally different. They only share those guidelines which we are told of in the ruleset.

In this respect, it is one of the best supplement I have read in the last years, since I find very boring the ruleset which provide with walls of text of settings and explanations.

Powers and stunt

Every character archetype has its own custom stunts. The thing I really like about these stunts is they really are story driven (and driving), with very few exceptions. They ask the GM and players to collaborate to shape NPCs and offer story hooks.

Every stunt is at least very colourful and inspiring for the game.

If you are looking for more graphic ideas about the world of Evolution Pulse, you can download the Extras from 001 to 004 directly from the game website (look at the bottom of the page): http://www.blackbox-games.com/progetti/evolution-pulse/

You can also listen to the playlist I made up with all the songs which are cited in the ruleset. They can give you a strong feeling of the setting: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLLip3tkptrm9H4FgAGGFb_Z-1bqOTSKqt



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Evolution Pulse - English Edition
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Evolution Pulse - Edizione Italiana
by Kevin B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/12/2015 10:52:26

One of the best settings I've read in years ! I just can't wait to play the game !



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Evolution Pulse - Edizione Italiana
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City of Judas
by Henry d. V. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/14/2015 12:18:58

Full disclosure: Playtester, here.

This game initially gave me a sort of Assassin's Creed vibe (so you know which playbook I'm claiming if anyone in my local group runs this, right?) but it quickly proved to be far richer, deeper, and more interesting than that. This is not your childhood DM's take on the Crusades, folks. Be prepared to be surprised. In all candor, the alternate history that M. Pignedoli has envisioned really helped this setting take off for me--it captures the feel of the period and the setting while being different enough to reinforce the awareness that this isn't just a re-enactment.

Mechanically it's a little crunchier than straight A*World, which was a bit of a stumbling point for us at first since we were playing online by post. (My gut feeling is that when you're around a table, the parts that puzzled us will flow much more naturally.) It's also got a mission-based format instead of the more freeform "what are you doing today" flow of the original.

Combat is a messy business, as in any *World game, but here it's complicated by an Advantage Die that gradually goes up as time goes on. Used well, it can and will save your bacon. (There's an optional rule that can speed combat up a little but makes it just a bit more lethal. Try it both ways!)

Magic is, as it should be, very strange and unsettling...and somewhat hazardous to the wielder's well-being, much like being a Brainer in A*World can be dangerous. The Sorcerer is also the single most complicated playbook in the game, but when the chips are down they have a lot of game-changing potential. Just don't ask them to cast Fireball on a moment's notice, 'cause this is a slower and more subtle style of ritual-based casting.

Overall, if your tastes in fantasy run low, grim, and a little gritty, or you want something that isn't just another dungeon crawl clone, this is worth checking out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
City of Judas
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Evolution Pulse (preview)
by Daniele D. R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/16/2015 16:43:08

I loved it since the first reading and I’ve been playing it for the last months. The book is full of rule and hints to customize your game and presents a brand new ruleset and an evocative cyber-gritty setting. Go and read it now! ;-)



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Evolution Pulse (preview)
by Eugenio M. L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/16/2015 16:37:48

In a dystopic and hopeless future, humanity has to face an overwhelming, brutal and nearly unstoppable alien invasion.

Before the extinction of men, the heroes of this game, people with powers beyond imagination, set themselves as unlikely protectors of what remains of a collapsed civilization.

Inspired by comics like Blame! and Biomega by Tsutomu Nihei in this preview you can find an outstanding mix of creativity and action drama. A game that pushes the acclaimed Fate system (in its FAE version) to its highest level.

I read the full version in italian (and played as well) it worth every minute spent with it.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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