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Post Posted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 1:03 am 
 

benjoshua wrote:
Could you also add AEG?  They published a lot of d20 stuff.  I haven't read any of it, so it might be crap.  Frankly, I don't know that much about them and don't really care. Or do they not meet some other criteria:?


I think you could add AEG.  Forgot them as well.

AEG has done some good stuff.

Thing is, with AEG, they seem to be headed off into a direction leading away from D&D.  They did release The Ultimate Tool Box in the past year, but I really think that is their last D&D product.

I tend to divide companies sharply between those publishing  D&D and those drifting off into what I think of as "failed RPGs," which includes every other game aside from the direct D&D clones, including those that have not yet failed but will.   :wink:


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Post Posted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 7:38 am 
 

Ultimate Toolbox is already system neutral.

  


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Post Posted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 8:11 am 
 

FormCritic wrote:The Tome of Horrors, by Necromancer Games

<snipped>

Thanks for that excellent review.
Hello Mr. Flind!  Still whacking people with those nunchuks?  

"Bah!  I spit on your nunchuks, humahn!  This be flindbar!"

Um, even the new book says, "They are otherwise identical to nunchaku."

"Raaah!  Let bonking begiiiiiiiiin!"


A propos...

Are you aware of the most entertaining conversion deathmatch thread on the necromancer forums. They were sparked by later published differing  versions of the same monsters from ToH.
CONVERSION DEATHMATCH!!!

Its 1st E feel vs. 3E corporate marketing!!!! Who's conversions kick the most ass? Tonight might makes right as we decide whos conversions hold the edge in the harsh world of D&D 3E!!!

Staring Announcers: Nick Daemon the money grubby yugoloth representing WOTC and Johnny Gnomez the gnomish bard representing NG. Refereed by Mills Maim the epic-level commoner.


There's also the more recent conversion deatmatch on 4e.

Good times...


Last edited by frankfromgermany on Fri Jul 31, 2009 8:29 am, edited 3 times in total.
  


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Post Posted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 8:18 am 
 

Gnat the Beggar wrote:I like several of the S&S books.
Relics and Rituals (For one).

Many of the Ravenloft line books were quite excellent. Though Ravenloft was licensed to  Arthaus a subsidiary of White Wolf, it also carried the Sword & Sorcery logo.

  

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Post Posted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 9:53 am 
 

Mars wrote:
Didn't a new version of Hackmaster just come out?  The Hackmaster Basic Set?


It came out at Origins. They're using the RPGA Living Kalamar setting for the Hackmaster Basic campaign setting (just in a different region, so not a continuation of the campaign per se).

It's a little different to play (for me) than your regular RPG. The big difference is in its initiative system, where actions take a certain amount of points (swinging a war hammer, moving 5ft., casting a spell) and the initiative counter keeps going up until the combat is resolved.

Also, you don't start out with a lot of hit points, and I'm think that this is a Hackmaster tradition, smaller races get smaller hit points. So of course I decided to play a halfling wizard (...talk about small hit points...).

My Chicago group of Kalamar players are going to all play halflings again (like we did in the Kalamar Campaign setting) and reform HALO - the Halfling Liberation Organization.   :lol:

Death to the tall people...

p.s. It will be presented at Gencon as well

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Post Posted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 8:14 pm 
 

The new Hackmaster basic set is a boxed set?


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Post Posted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 8:18 pm 
 

No, it's a softcover.

  


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Post Posted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 8:19 pm 
 

FormCritic wrote:The new Hackmaster basic set is a boxed set?


nope...from the kenzerco website.. (192 pgs., b&w, softcover)

  

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Post Posted: Sat Aug 01, 2009 2:53 am 
 

With the sheer volume of d20 and 3E related collectors threads, reviews and whotnot, maybe it's about time we had a seperate d20/3E section to the main forum? Not a subweb per se, but another seperate set of threads like we've got for non-TSR, classifieds, appraisals and TSR?


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Post Posted: Sat Aug 01, 2009 3:40 am 
 

http://paizo.com/store/sale

A tip for D20 collectors.

Click on this link.

Scroll down to the Green Ronin Apocalypse sale.

There's stuff on here you won't find on sale again...for $2 or $5.

Look at the other listings as well.  Some of the "clearance" items are 50% off...which means they are close to what should have been their base price.  But, there are other bargains for D20 people hidden in the the various sale listings.


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Last edited by FormCritic on Sat Aug 01, 2009 4:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
  

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Post Posted: Sat Aug 01, 2009 4:19 am 
 

And, observe this excerpt from an email I just got from Goodman Games:

Save Up to 50% at Gen Con
When You Trade In Your 3E Books
!

Turn that bookshelf of dusty 3E tomes into brand new 4E sourcebooks and adventures from Goodman Games! Visit us at Gen Con booth #1371 (right behind Wizards of the Coast), and here's how you can save:

Bring your used 3E books to the Goodman Games booth.
We will give credit for trade-in 3E books at 10 cents on the dollar.
You can use this credit toward any purchase at our booth for a discount of up to 50%.
For example, let's say you bring in a third edition Player's Handbook, originally valued at $29.99. We will give you $3.00 off a Goodman Games purchase of $6.00 or more. For a purchase of $5.99 or less, you would receive a discount of 50%.
Trade-in books must be in decent condition. Some wear-and-tear is okay, but we will not issue credit for books with torn pages, damaged covers, cracked spines, severe scuffing, and other severe damage.
...And Get All The Newest Releases!

At Gen Con this year we'll have seven new releases, including three convention exclusives! Be sure to visit our booth for these exciting titles:

Hero's Handbook: Eladrin
Hero's Handbook: Tiefling
DCC #63: The Warbringer's Son
Level Up #2
DCC #36: Talons of the Horned King (1E Edition)
DCC #C9: Tomb of the Blind God (Erol Otus "green cover" edition)
How To Write Adventure Modules That Don't Suck (the book)
Plus we will Black Blade Productions 1E modules at the booth, as well as some leftover Free RPG Day products from 2008 and 2009 (priced at $5/each - free only when you visit a store on Free RPG Day!)


Goodman is both working on hawking their products and collecting D20 publications.  Hmmmm.  :?  

Any speculation on possible motives?  Is Goodman going to become Ebay's next big RPG seller?  :D


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Post Posted: Sat Aug 01, 2009 6:22 am 
 

The Northern Crown campaign, by Atlas Games, was easily one of the most original settings to come out of the D20 creative wave.  While most companies were re-visiting Lothlorien, cashing in on pirates or trying to somehow make drow interesting again, Atlas quietly published two books detailing D20 adventures in an almost untouched genre:  Colonial North America.

I first heard about the setting because Atlas posted a free adventure download on DriveThruRPG, called The Caves of Chisca.  I was interested enough in what I read to lurk Ebay for some time, hunting a good deal on the two core books for this setting.  It took a while, because this bold setting was not wildly popular.  I managed to snag them both in a single auction.  They are:

Northern Crown:  New World Adventures (hardback, 168 pages)

and

Northern Crown:  The Gazetteer (hardback, 168 pages)

The basic idea of the Northern Crown setting is, "What if the European settlement of North American happened in a world where magic works?"  (It's actually cooler than that sentence sounds.)  Author Doug Anderson managed to thread the literary and historical needle to create a setting that combines the epic shadows of the North American wilderness, the sense of peril and adventure you find in a story like Last of the Mohicans and the strong horror elements of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow (with Johnny Depp), The Crucible (Salem Witch Trials) and Rip Van Winkle.  Toss in the Blair Witch, wendigos, haints, Ben Franklin, Squanto, Daniel Boone, Pontiac, Natty Bumpo, Pocahontas, Jean Lafitte, William Teach, Miles Standish, Crispus Attucks, El Dorado, Ponce De Leon and the lost colony of Roanoke and you have a good idea what this setting is about.

If you recognized at least half of the people, stories and places on that list, you have an idea of the potential scope of the Northern Crown setting.  The key word for Northern Crown is "haunted."  The wilderness is "haunted," with all that word implies.  This is the creepy side of old North America that H.P. Lovecraft might have chosen to portray.

Both books have solid bindings and glossy covers with paintings by A. Campbell.  The covers actually fit together to form a single panorama.  An Indian warrior and a puma crouch on a cliff edge, beside what is obviously wreckage, looking at a pirate-type, who is looking down at an airship (although there aren't airships in the books).  At the pirate's feet, just visible on the rock face, are two petroglyphs.  The painting manages to give you the sense of a vast wilderness with conflict and danger and ancient mysteries hidden right at your feet.

The interior art will not win any awards and there is not a huge amount of it, but the simple line drawings do manage to convey the feel of the setting.  Most of the drawings are of characters…people you might meet or portray in colonial America.  If you paid even vague attention in U.S. History class, or if you watched enough movies, you'll recognize most of the archetypes and have a good idea how to play them.  

Some features from Atlas Games' Nyambe setting manage to leak over into Northern Crown.  Nyambe is fantasy Africa, and has its own setting book worthy of a separate write-up.

There is also artistic support for this setting on the Atlas website.  Although the setting is no longer in print, Atlas still provides downloadable maps to help you get a grip on the Northern Crown.  These maps help, but one weakness of this setting is the lack of a large, four-color map glued into the back of the gazetteer.  Since Northern Crown is set in North America you could probably just look at a real-world physical map of the region.

Like any D20 setting, one of the gulfs you must cross is how magic works in Northern Crown.  There are special rules for magical locations, new spells, new spell-casting classes and the usual tripe about druids as defenders of nature.  At least in the Northern Crown setting these rules make sense and add to the overall feel…they aren't there just for the sake of adding crunchy bits to pad out a book.  If you're the type with the guts and players to take on colonial North America you'll want to use these rules.

Speaking of tripe…Northern Crown manages to keep it to a minimum….

The European colonization of North America was a real event and it can still be a very sensitive subject with lots of political correctness to navigate.  Doug Anderson manages to avoid the pitfalls of settings like Shadowrun, where Native Americans are quasi-elves who always manage to be bitter at the world, impossibly noble and much cooler than you.  They just aren't real people.  Northern Crown takes a much more realistic approach to the "First Ones" (despite how that name sounds) and their relations with the "Uropans."  The Uropans are visitors from their own enchanted realms, such as the "Albions"- from a fantasy British Isles ruled by a faerie queen.  The Native Americans in Northern Crown come across as real people.  Their interaction with the Uropans is realistic without pre-deciding who's a goodguy and who's a villain.

(Read or watch Last of the Mohicans.  Think about the motivations and viewpoints of the main characters.  Now decide which character is actually a villain.  If you have trouble deciding depending on which viewpoint you take then you probably understand what I'm talking about in the paragraph above…and what Northern Crown manages to accomplish.)

Religion is also a subject Northern Crown manages to deal with well.  Clerics are part of D&D and they need some sort of religious background to work. Doug Anderson manages to deal with the historical themes of fantasy Catholics, fantasy Protestants, fantasy shamanism and the like without being either stupid or offensive.

You can't have North America and Daniel Boone without muskets and gunpowder.  Northern Crown has workable rules for using these weapons.  Firearms used to be outright heresy in D&D, but the D20 spectrum includes both D20 Modern and Star Wars.  If you don't like the Nothern Crown approach there are other proposed systems to loot from a number of D20 products.

Northern Crown is not about the American Revolution.  America was a collection of colonies for longer than the United States has existed.  The setting is pre-French and Indian War.

Unlike some of the publications I've mentioned before, Northern Crown is not uber-collectible.  Rather, it is already rare and likely to more…um…rarer in the near future.  Anyone who knows the history of table-top gaming knows that straying out of cliché medieval fantasy is very risky for publishers.  Fantasy North America is a very selective market niche indeed.   These books are collectible in the same way that obscure role-playing books like the Midkemia publications are collectible…or an obscure RPG like Rus...if only I'd snapped ‘em all up back then!

One of the reasons I bring this setting up here is because it was a serious attempt by a D20 company to do something different.  This is a nice example of the creative explosion touched off by the Open Game License.  Northern Crown is worth reading and owning even if you never hanker to play a scenario based on The Scarlet Letter.  (Although it might work really well if you plan to play Pirates of the Caribbean.)

Another reason I bring it up now is because both books are currently on sale on the Paizo website for $10 each.  Scroll up several posts in this strand and you'll see the link to the Paizo sale.  Find the link for Atlas Games and you'll find both Northern Crown books.

My advice as self-appointed D20 faerie is that you go there and snap them up.  If you found anything I have written above both comprehensible and interesting then these books are worth a read and stand a fair chance of increasing in value.


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Post Posted: Sat Aug 01, 2009 9:59 am 
 

Just seen that Goodman Games email.  Not sure how many takers they'll get, but I'm sure some third party will be selling on Ebay things they do get.  That or some game stores.
Someone hover around that booth and offer more for some of the stuff that gets mentioned in these boards if people are idiotic to sell for 10 cents on the dollar.

ShaneG.


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Post Posted: Sat Aug 01, 2009 1:47 pm 
 

Plaag wrote:Just seen that Goodman Games email.  Not sure how many takers they'll get, but I'm sure some third party will be selling on Ebay things they do get.  That or some game stores.
Someone hover around that booth and offer more for some of the stuff that gets mentioned in these boards if people are idiotic to sell for 10 cents on the dollar.

ShaneG.


Like those pitiful "gun buyback programs" of the 1990's.  Gun collectors would park nearby with signs that said, "I Pay Cash For Legal Guns."  Then they would go up and down the waiting line and make exchanges and purchases.

10 cents on the dollar might not be a bad deal when one considers how high the cover prices of some of those D20 volumes are.  

Note that Goodman will only allow credit on up to 50% of the cost of a new item.  They aren't paying cash and they still break close to even without counting re-sale value.


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Post Posted: Sat Aug 01, 2009 5:37 pm 
 

FormCritic wrote:Note that Goodman will only allow credit on up to 50% of the cost of a new item.  They aren't paying cash and they still break close to even without counting re-sale value.

Beyond that, this creates publicity and promotes Goodman as a 4E publisher.  Good move.

  

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Post Posted: Sat Aug 01, 2009 5:50 pm 
 

FormCritic wrote:And, observe this excerpt from an email I just got from Goodman Games:

Save Up to 50% at Gen Con
When You Trade In Your 3E Books
!

Turn that bookshelf of dusty 3E tomes into brand new 4E sourcebooks and adventures from Goodman Games! Visit us at Gen Con booth #1371 (right behind Wizards of the Coast), and here's how you can save:

Bring your used 3E books to the Goodman Games booth.
We will give credit for trade-in 3E books at 10 cents on the dollar.
You can use this credit toward any purchase at our booth for a discount of up to 50%.
For example, let's say you bring in a third edition Player's Handbook, originally valued at $29.99. We will give you $3.00 off a Goodman Games purchase of $6.00 or more. For a purchase of $5.99 or less, you would receive a discount of 50%.
Trade-in books must be in decent condition. Some wear-and-tear is okay, but we will not issue credit for books with torn pages, damaged covers, cracked spines, severe scuffing, and other severe damage.
...And Get All The Newest Releases!

At Gen Con this year we'll have seven new releases, including three convention exclusives! Be sure to visit our booth for these exciting titles:

Hero's Handbook: Eladrin
Hero's Handbook: Tiefling
DCC #63: The Warbringer's Son
Level Up #2
DCC #36: Talons of the Horned King (1E Edition)
DCC #C9: Tomb of the Blind God (Erol Otus "green cover" edition)
How To Write Adventure Modules That Don't Suck (the book)
Plus we will Black Blade Productions 1E modules at the booth, as well as some leftover Free RPG Day products from 2008 and 2009 (priced at $5/each - free only when you visit a store on Free RPG Day!)


Goodman is both working on hawking their products and collecting D20 publications.  Hmmmm.  :?  

Any speculation on possible motives?  Is Goodman going to become Ebay's next big RPG seller?  :D


This an old sales tactic with comic books. It is a bit like the casino from the movie Operation Petticoat. They set up a casino and offer huge amounts in chips to anyone bringing in supplies they need and then these guys all lose their chips at the tables.

With comics the main thing was that back issues were all icing (or should have been). Most of the sales came from new books and back issues came from new books that didn't sell or collections.

Well collections in the 90s were dirt cheap. 5c on the dollar, 1c on the dollar, (I remember our store buying 30,000 comics for 500 bucks). And the wholesale discount on new books was 65%.

The thing to do was to make an offer where for every $1 you spent on new books you received $1 in credit on back issues, good for 50% of the back issue value. And if you wanted to trade in your books offer 100% of the guide price in credit. The back issues sold at 50% of guide, which was all profit.

Goodman isn't going to lose a cent (though what they are going to do with the trade ins may be a pain for them). It is better than a sale.

  

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Post Posted: Sun Aug 02, 2009 6:22 pm 
 


** expired eBay auction **


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Post Posted: Sun Aug 02, 2009 7:30 pm 
 

FormCritic wrote:
** expired eBay auction **




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