Monday, October 18, 2010

Tommy's Take on Thief, Pearl Harbor December and Dark Elves



EXPANDED PROFESSIONS: THIEF

Misfit Studios scores again with another Expanded Profession, easily the best and brightest of their microsupplement lines. Ten new Edges and a Knowledge skill, all designed to allow a more enhanced customization of thieves.

A new Legendary Edge, Guild Master, is included...allowing you to begin forming your own thieves guild. Trap Sense allows you to subconsciously detect traps without actively searching for them, and the Trap Springer Edges grant Armor against traps you accidentally set off while trying to disarm them!

Well worth it, especially if you have a thief-like character in your fantasy game, for a much greater number of customization options, with only one Edge having a direct combat application (Rooftop Ruffian allowing you to fight and climb at the same time). So far, the Expanded Professions are Can't Miss Material.

PEARL HARBOR DECEMBER: VILLAINS OF WWII

This is just cool...my favorite of the WWII releases by Vigilance Press thus far.

Pearl Harbor December are the Japanese superteam, who clashed heavily with Vigilance Force in WWII.

Every villain is given their Japanese name and approximate English translation...I'll be sticking with the English names for simplicity's sake.

Right off, we have the "cannon fodder" Savage Men...who are STOUT mutated raging madmen. Seriously...these guys are scary, with Strength and Prowess of 7 and Regeneration and Invulnerability of 5...possibly too good to be underlings.

My favorite member of Pearl Harbor December is the first unique member posted, the Matchless Warrior: a "simple warrior" who is capable of batting away darn near anything, including *missiles*, with his bo staff! Something about the concept just strikes me as being incredibly cool...he's my favorite character I've seen posted in these WWII PDFs so far.

Death Mask is an armored Japanese warrior...and by "Armored" I mean "Japanese Iron Man", flying through the air, firing energy blasts, etc.

Monster has the "soul of a poet in the body of a brute", but he's not your typical brick at ALL...he is much, much lighter on his feet than one would expect.

Sword Bearer is the Emperor's Personal Guard, carrying a ancient weather warping weapon.

Hypothermia is, powers-wise, a Japanese Iceman...though he has a soldier's temperment and not a joker's.

Rounding out the list is the immortal warrior Living Chronicle, who is actually ever scarier than just "immortal sword master".

This is my favorite of the releases so far, as the character work really comes into its own, especially with Matchless Warrior and Monster...moreso than the Nazis, these guys all have the capacity for being played as heroes as well, especially if you used them outside of a WWII setting.

Very high recommendation.

PLAYER RACES: THE DARK ELF

I can see this one being polarizing.

Arguably the most popular - and hated - fantasy race I can think of comes to Savage Worlds through Misfit Studios' new line of PDFs, "Player Races".

Dark Elves became very prominent in the 90s with the popularity of Drizzt Do'Urden, and now you can't throw a d20 without hitting a D&D player who hates them. That said, I always kinda liked dark elves.

Mechanically, the Dark Elf race has both Infravision (which halves penalities for Dark Lighting) and Low Light Vision (which ignores penalities for Dark Lighting), and unless I'm missing something...that's fairly redundant.

Of the "classic" Dark Elf powers, the race retains the "field of darkness", as the Obscure power.

Dark Half-Elves are also listed, based off of Half-Elves.

The PDF also includes a new Hindrance and three new Edges, as well as four sample Dark Elf poisons and stats for a Dark Elf crossbow.

A sample Dark Elf warrior is statted up, with a sidebar on "Deep Mithral", which is used to make Dark Elf armor but degrades in the sunlight.

A very nice pick for the first Player Race, and what appears to be a balanced take on Dark Elves for Savage Worlds. Combine it with the all the other little niceties, such as the poisons and the Deep Mithral and you get another jampacked purchase for less than $2.