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Tales from the Rocket Age
Publisher: Why Not Games
by David N. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/16/2018 02:24:55

Reviewing it as a work of fiction, not on the basis of its format, this is a great book, providing exactly what I was looking for: inspiration, world building and some fun stories to kill some time.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Tales from the Rocket Age
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Pulp Fantastic
Publisher: Battlefield Press
by David N. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/27/2016 07:22:46

This is an incredibly interesting book and an amazing look into a genre. Now I will say off the bat that it doesn't have the sheer quantity of setting material of something like Rocket Age and even though they've provided options for aliens I wouldn't use this book. Rocket Age really has that one covered.

It does however do an amazing job of analysing and breaking down pulp stories, showing the structures and the tropes. The rules feel like a natural fit and as well as providing many pre-made characters it also has plenty of guidance on implementing them and the themes they represent. It doesn't shy away from acknowledging some of the inherent nastiness of the themes either, instead preferring to leave decisions on such things in the hands of the GM.

Its more of a 1920s to 40s toolkit than anything else and feels wonderfully conversational. I actually picked it up due to the lack of an Earth supplement for Rocket Age and it definitely delivers. Also if you aren't familiar with the Vortex rules and want to pick them up I'd recommend this or Rocket Age over the Doctor Who rpg.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Pulp Fantastic
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Interface Zero 2.0: Full Metal Cyberpunk
Publisher: Gun Metal Games
by David N. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/06/2016 06:35:40

I genuinely love this setting, for a lot of different reasons. I won't be talking about the rules, since aside from a few (very good) additions it's Savage Worlds

  1. It's a pure cyberpunk setting and despite how crowded it makes the setting, it tries to cram in every trope into the book. There's a reviewer who claims the setting lifts a lot from Shadowrun. I'd say they share similarities because they're both playing with all of the standard Cyberpunk topics, old and new. This isn't theft. There are a few truths about classic Cyberpunk, the top ones being that the US collapses, the East rises and there are scary AIs busy doing scary AI things. This gives you that wonderful Neuromancer nostalgia that you always want. The book even references Snow Crash, with the crazy pizza delivery driver occupation, which I think some might have taken at face value, as opposed to a joke.

The setting packs in psychics, designer humans, human animal hybrids, full body cyborgs, androids, bioroids and Blade Runner style replicants with limited lifespans. It deals with the descrimination that all are traditionally treated with in such stories, as well as the implications. It doesn't do anything new, but it does do everything you expected.

Best of all, it doesn't act like cybernetics makes you evil. It acknowledges the psychological issues involved with changing yourself, but the rules deal more with the physical and neural strain of modifying yourself, than the danger of flipping out and going psycho because you've lost your humanity.

  1. The setting deals with basically the entire world. The book literally has an overview of everywhere, as well as containing conversations spaced throughout dealing with the prejudices of the different characters and the writers of the different sections (it's all in character and in setting.) It's a nice detail that I learnt carried over from the older edition and on into newer source books. Yes Shadowrun did it first, but I think it was a good choice.

  2. Every cyberpunk disaster that could have happened, has, but they all link up and naturally progress from one another (aside from the AI, but they're kind of meant to be a curve ball no-one was expecting). The environment is wrecked, the economy is nuts, people have popped off nukes at one another, nations are collapsing, you get the picture. Thing is though, it all kind of links together. Why did the economy collapse? The environment and scarcity of resources. Why did wars erupt and nations start falling apart? See above.

One clever edition is how the Chinese communist government fell due to the huge number of disaffected young men in its nation. Real world problems keep on cropping up and coming back to bite us. It's a nice touch.

  1. There's no magic. Yes, there are psychic powers, cybermonks and mecha, alll things which are silly, but find their way into so much of the genre that it'd be a shame to leave them out. But the setting retains the feeling that maybe even if things are utterly bonkers, it's a place that could have once been our earth (Unless we're talking about the Achtung! Cthulhu crossover). Psychic powers have an ultimately human source and the danger isn't some dragon pulling the strings, but a corrupt company or mysterious AI. It keeps it purely cyberpunk, which means if you aren't a fan of magic in you're sci-fi, this might be the setting for you.


Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Interface Zero 2.0: Full Metal Cyberpunk
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Rocket Age - The Lure of Venus
Publisher: Why Not Games
by David N. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/16/2015 06:05:12

Alright, gonna say right now this is a great supplement. The new and varied Venusian cultures are all believable and compelling, the new creatures are fascinating and the earthling's interactions with the locals are excellent.

Just one thing, I've never really mentioned before, but has come up in the Mars book and Trail of the Scorpion campaign. They need more editing. They've left a couple of minor errors in, nothing major but rather annoying.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Rocket Age - The Lure of Venus
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Phoenix: The Terrible Valley of Static
Publisher: Gun Metal Games
by David N. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/06/2015 23:59:33

I really like this supplement. Its very short (only 21 pages, including the cover) and its mostly fluff. But what excellent fluff and the rules that go with it are excellent.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Phoenix: The Terrible Valley of Static
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Rocket Age - The Trail of the Scorpion
Publisher: Why Not Games
by David N. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/20/2014 06:07:16

This campaign book is excellent, incredibly meaty and just plain fun. The overarching threat of the Red Scorpion feels incredible and really unites all the very different missions.

It also acts as a tour of the Solar System, taking you to some very exotic locales and introducing a huge variety of new creatures, people and technology. The ever-present story hooks are as interesting as ever of course and even include the possibility of exploring the truth behind CS Lewis' greatest work.

I really recommend this book even to those who aren't a fan of pre-made campaigns. Even if you only took parts from various adventures I think your money would be well spent.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Rocket Age - The Trail of the Scorpion
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Rocket Age - The Asteroid Belt
Publisher: Why Not Games
by David N. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/31/2014 02:04:19

An excellent quick introduction to a region of space so far unexplored in Rocket Age. Like most Rocket Age supplements the emphasis is on story telling and adventure hooks. It also provides a number of new careers and factions to work for and against. You want to be an independent miner trying to eke out a living? A pirate? A corporate enforcer? Done.

The options are all there. For the price, there's no reason not to buy it.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Rocket Age - The Asteroid Belt
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Rocket Age - Heroes of the Solar System
Publisher: Why Not Games
by David N. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/14/2014 02:45:16

Brilliant, simple additions that add more to the game without overcomplicating anything.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Rocket Age - Heroes of the Solar System
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Rocket Age - Blood Red Mars
Publisher: Why Not Games
by David N. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/11/2014 18:25:09

An excellent expansion that provides you with enough background, places and new monsters that you could easily run all your campaigns on Mars if you really wanted to.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Rocket Age - Blood Red Mars
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