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Adventure 4: Into the Unknown
Adventure 4: Into the Unknown
$24.99 $14.99









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The Cyber.net.ica Bundle [BUNDLE]
by Harry S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/26/2013 23:04:13
Just got this last night and really like the Tweaks and Souls of the Machine games. There are some really cool concepts here which can easily be ported over to your favorite game system...or you could use the simple system included. The Tekxorcist and Techmaturge in Souls of the Machine are highly recommended for anyone mixing magic and scifi. Well done!

Unfortunately I did not receive the download link for 'Monkeys On Juice nor did I receive credit for buying it as part of the advertised bundle for Cyber.net.ica. I cannot locate a contact the publisher link on the site here so I am waiting until they see this post.

Harry Smith

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Cyber.net.ica Bundle [BUNDLE]
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Hobb Sized Adventures!
by Alexander L. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 05/16/2013 05:48:17
Originally published at: http://diehardgamefan.com/2013/05/16/tabletop-review-hobb-si-
zed-adventures-tunnels-trolls-7-5/


Being a big fan of solo adventures, I seized the opportunity to review this set of six adventures, all of them very short. Designed for use with Tunnels & Trolls 7.5, which I actually am not very familiar with, these adventures range from the slightly serious to the overtly silly. I’d say all of them could be played in less than twenty minutes (twenty minutes each, I mean). Did I enjoy them? Let’s go through each adventure and I’ll give my thoughts.

Tomb of the Toad

This is a very short adventure, probably doable in five minutes. You are chased into an old, slimy tomb, and you may or may not run into its primary inhabitant for a boss fight. You have a few rooms to explore, but you’re pretty much railroaded into either meeting the big guy or running away. The linear nature didn’t really bother me, it was kind of fun just to have an adventure that felt like a small slice of a larger adventure. What is also really nice is that the adventure is narratively bookended by the main character (you) being chased by a big, nasty monster, so there is this feeling of continuity that is intriguing (as opposed to the standard adventure ending of “You Win! The End”).

Duck Soup

This is one of the sillier ones. An old woman harasses you into going and getting a “duck” from the pond for dinner. This one I enjoyed the least, since it involved wandering around a pointless and unnecessary maze-like edge of some village, retreading the few entries again and again until I somehow hit the right road to the pond. There are a few humorous twists that I appreciated though, and the in-game humour written into the characters of the story was also really fun.

The Challenge of the King

Oh sweet Xenu, this one was pretty funny. Damn annoying, but funny. You have been randomly chosen to be wed to the King’s “daughter” (notice now two subjects of the story in quotes?), but first you must pass his test. This involves being pushed through a portal into a strange series of rooms entered and left by other portals. Inside each room is a nasty surprise like a monster or trap but also treasure. Fun for the whole family, really. Several endings are “happy,” and some are actually happy. This adventure is notable for its extensive use of tables and randomness.

Tower in the Marsh

This enigmatic adventure is a bit more sober, beginning with an adventurer finding a strange tower. Again, the adventurer is being chased by some nameless monster and must get inside. Inside, there are some creeps and scares, and some strange goings-on. One way or another, you’ll find your way out (possibly into another story). I liked this one, the tower had an air of mystery around it that I enjoyed and that made me want to explore more. The endings were funny and/or as wistful and mysterious as the rest of the adventure. Again, feeling like I had just played a few minutes in an adventurer’s shoes was cool.

The Harvest of Souls

This is a horror-themed adventure about being persuaded by a frightened farmer to go and confront an evil pumpkin-gourd-vine demon that lives in the pumpkin patch. Another of the more serious adventures, this one can take some time to read since a lot of the entries are quite long and full of dialogue and narrative. I found it to be less snappy and interesting than the others, essentially consisting of combat and another maze to stumble through. A bit like playing through a short young adult story a la Goosebumps or something.

Beware, the Viper!

This is perhaps the shortest adventure of the bunch, and probably the silliest. I won’t ruin the punchline for you, but in this context I thought it was pretty funny. I can just imagine Steve Jackson or Ian Livingstone turning the concept into a whole 400-entry book and at the last paragraph…the joke. Ah, I would die.

Overall, I found this to be a fun exercise in solo adventuring. The author has done a good job with different takes on short solo adventures, using different techniques in each one for various effects. The silliness and jokes are generally well-done, and in the end the stories feel like tales that villagers tell each other around a campfire or in the tavern. The adventures have recurring characters and places, and it starts to feel like a little world-building has gone on here. It’s nice.

I dunno, I feel like I should deride these adventures for being anti-grandiose but I really like them. They feel very “slice of life” to me and not stressful or overwhelming. The production value isn’t bad (it’s not great), and the propensity to substitute “to” for “two” is a bit unsettling, but there were no glaring errors that ruined the play of the adventures, and I think that’s what really matters here. For under four bucks, I think they are definitely worth a read and a laugh. Play through them when you have a few minutes, bring them on a plane or bus ride, whatever. I should also mention the artwork by a Jon Towers, which adorns the cover, but I think just clipart was used for the images in the adventures. If you like this book and want more adventures, check out the website at Hobb-Sized Adventures. I enjoy and endorse this style of adventure, and I hope to see more of them in the future.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Hobb Sized Adventures!
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Half Sized Adventures
by Rachael S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/04/2013 16:37:27
This is a pick-a-path adventure book. I have to say I am disappointed as this is not what I expected. This is not to say that the product is not good its just not what I expected it to be is all..

Pros: 5 adventures, nicely written, short with a dozen or so events each. Good for in the glovebox for those boring waiting times.


Cons: I would have prefered this to be in a dual column format, Also it would be nice if it took more then 10 minutes to read it all.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Half Sized Adventures
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QADD: Quick and Dirty Dungeons
by Lora A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/05/2013 23:42:55
One of my first thoughts concerning QADD was that it wouldn't be good to introduce new players to RPGs with. However, I can now see that it would be excellent for such a thing provided it's a game run by an experienced DM who doesn't mind making up things on the fly.

After a couple of runs through the solitaire adventures “Duck Soup” and “The Mad King's Challenge”, I decided to see just how “quick” QADD could be. After the usual pack of middle-aged ne'er-do-wells showed up I told them I was going to teach them a new system in five minutes and we were going to test-run it. I quickly handed out index cards and told them what to write down. I explained the abilities and how the dice pertained to them and taught them about combat. While I was doing this I came up with my story line about rats gnawing at the sewer supports under the street. Everything else just sort of flowed.

So, after a five-minute crash course on QADD, five minutes for character creation (and only slightly longer for spell selection), and a momentary pause to get the munchies on the table, we were off on a delve that took about 15-20 minutes with only short pauses to clarify/invent some rules. The adventure was a success not only in that everyone had a blast, but also that QADD did exactly what it said it would do. It delivered a quick and dirty dungeon.

There are many good points about this system, not the least of which is the ease with which it can be learned and memorized. One page, front and back, and no charts to keep track of. Quick character creation, quick combat resolution, and even my flimsy rat-fighting plot found a comfortable pace with the open-ended flavor. The equipment list is far from complete, but one quick glance and you can figure out where any typical pseudo-medieval weapon should fit. The list of races is minimal; elf, dwarf, and hobbit, as well as human (naturally). Again, the modifiers for the races are done so simply that any new races can easily be added to the list quite easily.

The only drawback I can see is that it will take an experienced DM to fill in the gaps left by this very rules-light system. The examples given for combat are for one-on-one encounters with only one variation, an example of rolling for mass combat. No example is given for a party ganging up on one target. This is problematic since combat is based on a “high roll wins” situation, when both sides roll simultaneously and the difference is the damage that goes to the loser (reduced for armor, etc). RAW, this means that a party of four attacks a single monster at one attack each while the monster gets four attacks. An experienced DM might rule that the monster attacks only one target, and any other “attack rolls” that the monster wins are simply misses on the party's part.

In summary, if you're an experienced DM you should grab this game. Easy to learn, easy to teach, it can introduce newbies and satisfy the itch of veteran gamers who just want a quick delve with emphasis on action. This is a product that lives up to its name; Quick and Dirty Dungeons!

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
QADD: Quick and Dirty Dungeons
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Barbarians, Booze, & Battle Axes!
by Tom L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/14/2013 07:41:13
I figured Charles Flemming was trying to avoid the abbreviation B&B, which is for the prehistoric 80s RPG game Bunnies & Burrows, when I started reading Barbarians, Booze, & Battle Axes. By the end of the read, I saw that he had worked in drunkenness into a smooth game mechanic. Just for that I rate the game perfect.

Of course the pictures of me at the office throughout the work didn't hurt either.

Seriously, though... While I was impressed at this game's sense of humor, it almost hides the system's simplicity and the eloquent writing. I've seen more than a few serious D&D tabletop sessions that could use some help with just the drinking rules and accompanying conventions. And the overall simplicity of the rules can come in very handy when the players themselves might be on the tail end of a bender and jumping in for just one more game.

This work comes complete with a monsters list and a solo adventure. Say you're on a budgeted weekend. Buy and read it on Friday. You've got all you the solo Saturday night. And with minimal notes a homemade GM adventure for your regular group on Sunday.

There is a typo, a "his" instead of a "him," so it's not perfect. And the artwork would've looked better in B&W. But hey. This work cost a buck, I'd give it no less than 4.5. Since that isn't an option 5 stars all the way. So when Flemming finishes up "Wizards, Wine, & Witchcraft," I am all in for some After-11pm post-Melee and Wizard table-top.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Barbarians, Booze, & Battle Axes!
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Barbarians, Booze, & Battle Axes!
by Alexander L. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 01/11/2013 08:52:24
Originally posted at: http://diehardgamefan.com/2013/01/11/tabletop-review-barbari-
ans-booze-battle-axes/

I suppose one of the worst things about most RPGs is that you simply can’t play them drunk. I mean, technically you could, but it would be a pain in the butt trying to read small print after the sixth shot.

BBB seems to have an answer to that problem. It uses a system so overtly simple as to make confusion all but impossible. Depending on what kind of player you are, this will either endear you to the system, or make it seem like child’s play.

Character creation is a cinch. A barbarian, which you must be, always comes equipped with the same starting stats. You get one point each in fighting, drinking, toughness, and “other stuff”. After that you get some gold to spend on equipment. Keeping up with the simple theme, you can only buy basic weapons and armor. There are no magical items or the like to further customize your character. The most customization you’ll get is in choosing your character’s name.

Each point you get in a stat allows you a roll of percentile dice to determine your score. So for example, having two points in fighting gives you two rolls. When deciding the outcome of an action, you take your highest roll, add in any bonuses, and then the highest number wins. When dealing damage, you deal the difference between these rolls. This is also quite simple, as you don’t have to make separate attack/damage rolls.

The drinking system is easily the most unique part of the game. Drinking is a full fledged mechanic, rather than something you do for lore’s sake and occasionally make a fortitude roll for. Basically, you partake in drinking contests, rolling the same dice you did for fighting. Losing a round gives you a drunk point. First to six loses. Interestingly enough, getting drunk can directly affect fighting. For the first few point, you actually get better in combat, but then things start to go downhill quite rapidly. For toughness and other stuff rolls, getting drunk is always a bad thing.

To go along with the drinking theme, the game includes three drinking games. Each of these can technically be used in game, but they’re mainly designed for the players to get trashed. After all, it would be a pain in the butt to roll dice to see what card you drew from a deck and then to calculate the alcohol percentage of the center cup when different people have been adding drinks to it.

The other two stats are kind of throwaways that will only get brought up in the more in depth campaigns. Toughness is basically a strength check that determines if you force open a door. It also serves as a fortitude score. Other stuff is simply a roll for anything else you might think you have to roll for.

Leveling up in the game is also quite simple. You get a set amount experience for each fight you win, each drinking contest you win, and each other roll you win. In order to level up a stat, you simply multiply your current level by one hundred, and that’s the experience you need. So it takes one hundred experience to level fighting up to two, and then it will take two hundred experience the second time you want to level it up. You can also spend a hundred experience to gain some extra HP. Again, this is a very simple system. The game even advises using index cards for character sheets as opposed to full blown pieces of paper. You simply don’t need that much room.

Finally, there is a solo adventure tacked onto the last couple of pages that’s meant to serve as an introduction to the game’s basic mechanics. It basically offers a couple of fights and choices in a short “choose your own adventure” type deal. It’s amusing, but won’t last more than a few minutes. Still, it gives an idea of how to play the game, which is nice.

If this game were more than a buck, I’d probably say it was a waste of time. It really seems like something anyone could make up in a couple of hours. It’s very simplistic, and won’t satisfy most players because of this. However, it might be fun to try it out during a drinking party with friends. For that reason alone, I’d say this game is worth a look. At the very least, it can be easily modified for more advanced play.

Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
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Zombie Death Town
by Eadwin T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/02/2012 05:07:34
I don't mind the simple combat system, some of the narrative was good and I enjoy the point about the futility of it all. However I disliked the use of North, South East and West when you know the town and perhaps road names could be used to navigate? The annoying maze where 50 room descriptions are the same except one (this just makes to skim read to spot the difference) and the broken element regarding the access card.

Shame as I'd love to see more solo games made.

Not really worth the money when $1 can get you so much more games-wise these days.

Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Zombie Death Town
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Zombie Death Town
by Robert K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/14/2012 11:04:15
This really isn't much of a game. You're led by the nose through pre-scripted encounters with a rather lame combat system, and every ending involves you dying. Why do I even bother to play a solo story game if my choices boil down to "Eaten to death or shot to death"? It's one thing to have a dark ending, it's another entirely when it feels like the author wanted to just laugh at you when you fail to survive, again, because there's no way to survive.

I suppose if you like playing games with a sadist GM who decides to nuke your character every time he gets bored, it's a rather similar experience...

Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
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Angry Flowers!
by John Y. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/06/2012 11:45:17
At $0.99 it does seem a bit pricey for just 7 pages, but on the plus side, you get two pdfs - 1 full size and 1 pocket mod. True, it's not anything you couldn't do yourself with any existing system (but you didn't, did you?), and it won't replace your regular RPG set, however, $0.99 for a playable, easy to run, fun game, for a break from "serious" sessions is a pretty good deal. I got mine for $.75 during the recent Christmas in July sale on the DriveThru sites, and it's definitely worth at least that.

Plus you'll get to roll your d4 more than you ever have.

For less than a dollar and maybe 20 minutes spent creating a scenario, we got an hour or so of laughing, dice rolling and story telling. What more do you want?

Ok, there must be something or I would have given it 5 stars.

What was missing? I would have liked more explanation of the telepathic powers in game terms. Healing is detailed as 1d4 , but, for example, the ability to lift X pounds, doesn't indicate whether a skill roll is required or if it's automatic. I can decide how I want to handle it, but I was curious as to the game designer's intent.

Even so, that didn't impact our fun at all.

Don't let that dissuade you from making the purchase!

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Angry Flowers!
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Duck Soup
by Chet C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/11/2012 18:42:23
I loved this when it was a Tunnels and Trolls solo, and I love it almost as much under QADD! I strongly recommend anything which Charlie has written, especially any solo. He knows how to use minimalism properly to get the most impact from the minimal amount of words.

More!!

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Duck Soup
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Beware, The Viper
by David C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/25/2011 14:38:35
At Michael's advice I also purchased and played this. This adventure is no walk in the park.

The Viper is the scariest villain since Big Erik. Beware! He is coming...

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Beware, The Viper
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Beware, The Viper
by Michael E. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/24/2011 11:12:29
At first I was dubious of this product, having heard the rumors that several flying monkeys had gathered on the Second Longest Night of the year to mingle and fight over one small stone tablet while randomly pounding hammers on chisels to create the paragraphs of this Tunnels and Trolls solo. But then I actually played the solo, and I must say, it is the funniest mini-mini-solo I have ever played! I actually played it twice in the span of seventy-three heartbeats, and never died once! This is a survivable T&T solo, which is a rare thing. If you have never played Tunnels and Trolls and wondered what a good introductory solo would be, this is it! Well, okay, maybe not, as you won't have a chance to exercise many (read: any) of the rules, but you will get to meet one of the greatest villains of all time, namely, The Viper! Beware him! Do it now!

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Zombie Death Town
by Mike M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/18/2011 14:30:58
Even though this product costs only 2 bucks it is totally not worth spending your money on. There is no real RP experience involved, just a kindergarten-level combat system and a plot without proper ending. The sole reason I give this "game" 2 stars is that it has a bunch of decent jokes in it and it is about zombies. Everything is better with zombies, right?)

Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Zombie Death Town
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Zombie Death Town
by Thomas H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/22/2011 14:16:52
A very good well thought out single player game. I hope that more of these are created.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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Zombie Death Town
by Ron P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/21/2010 10:10:52
Played it, enjoyed it, but not really much there. The narrative is excellent, much more descriptive than most solo by-the-numbers adventures. But far too many non-active choices, so literally nothing happens for several picks; there are too few actual combat encounters and too few "lucky you, found a helpful object" encounters, and too many (admittedly funny) "oops just got eaten by the zombies and nuthin' you can do about it."

Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
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