Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Tommy's Take on Attack of The Buzz, Evolution of Apex and The White Knight and the AMP Year One Giveaway!

A trifecta of short reviews today, all AMP adventures, and then we announce the AMP giveaway winners! I'm pumped. You have no idea how much I LOVE doing giveaways.




ETHICS IN GAME JOURNALISM DISCLAIMER: I did once work for Third Eye Games on the Savage Worlds version of Apocalypse Prevention, Inc. Also, this post has affiliate links. Using those links to purchase these adventures may provide me with store credit at RPGNow.

ATTACK OF THE BUZZ

The first AMP adventure, Attack of The Buzz takes a moment from the AMP timeline (a crazy killer bee attack) and leads the PCs to it. Hooks are provided to help the PCs along, no matter which AMP affiliation they belong to (including being unaffiliated.

SIX POINT SUMMARY

- Smart move providing different entry points to the adventure based on affiliation. It drives home that there is no "one true way" to play the game, but there truly are options.

- Beekeeper suits.

- Critter, a major NPC from the corebook, is included again at the back of this adventure for convenience, as she plays a large (though it shouldn't be overshadowing) role in the adventure. Nice move for convenience sake.

- I believe the art used is unique to the adventure, and it is well placed and evocative (bees attacking people, plus the titular villain, who looks just a little pathetic...which is intentional).

- Two new augments for the Leash power, one that allows you to ward off animals and one that allows you to forge soldiers out of swarms.

- The adventure provides a few more nice examples of how to use Skill Combos in different situations (like hiding from bees). Does a nice job of illustrating the flexibility of the skills.

A solid adventure with an interesting antagonist with a back story that serves to illustrate just the kind of world this is. The Buzz isn't a cackling supervillain, and this isn't a comic book. It's a super powered tragedy more than anything...and that ain't bad. I can send Swarm at my PCs in Marvel SAGA all day long, AMP needs to do something different to be worth my time, and it does.

EVOLUTION OF APEX

Nothing shady about a mysterious organization recruiting AMPs in the name of SCIENCE~! and research, right? And when a patient goes missing, the PCs get the call...what could go wrong?

SIX POINT SUMMARY

- A little less universal utility than Attack of the Buzz. While far from rigid, the entry points are just a little less open - and thus a little less likely to fit any and all characters - than the first adventure.

- A pair of intriguing setting developments: An AMP whose powers mutate over time, and a human genetic experiment on par with an AMP.

- No new mechanical crunchy bits like augments.

- The adventure is actually very wide open. Little points that can be expanded upon by the GM to fit the mood they want, and the PCs' decisions have a huge impact on the ending and the repercussions that follow.

- The bad guys have the potential to be truly scary, and far reaching, depending on how the PCs handle them.

- Again, original art is commissioned for the adventure, and it sets the tone nicely.

While this one is going to be a touch harder to fit into every campaign than Attack of the Buzz, I like it a bit more, as it allows the GM a little more flexibility than a lot of written adventures, something I truly appreciate, complete with advice on how to carry these threads out of the adventure and back into your regular campaign.

THE WHITE KNIGHT

An AMP horror adventure! The White Knight takes place the night of Halloween, 2015 (culminating on November 1st - All Souls Day), and leaves the PCs in the midst of an ongoing battle between two warring AMPs.

- This adventure is very much a horror adventure. While all of the AMP adventures have a slightly more unsettling tone to them than the typical supers adventure, this one falls deep in a dark place.

- New Augments are presented for the Mediumship power, which makes sense as it shows off two NPCs with Mediumship who have developed in VERY different ways, both in personality and concept, as well as in actual manifestation of powers.

- The bad guy in this adventure has completely lost the script, a good example of someone who starts down the road to Hell with good intentions and becomes an absolutely horrible monster in the end.

- White Knight is a great example of a big, important (for the adventure) NPC, who does not overshadow the PCs because of smart design by the author.

- This one, unfortunately, lacks the effective art of the other two, which is doubly disappointing because it arguably needs the tone set more.

- Ran many supers adventures with a full blown zombie horde? I haven't, and I've been running supers games for decades. And it gets WORSE from there.

Easily one of the most unique supers adventures I have seen, and probably the one I would tell you to pick up if you only bought one, in part because of the uniqueness of it, and in part because of the fantastic side by side example of how to build two completely different characters with the same primary power.

And now, at long last...The AMP Giveaway!

The winners of the six Year One PDFs are:

1. Brian Rock
2. Matt Horvath
3. Kyle Simons
4. Kreg Mosier
5. Max Morell
6. Patrick Clark

And the print book goes too...

1. Tad Kelson

I wanna thank Third Eye Games for sponsoring this contest, and everyone that entered it! And the cool thing is, it looks like I'll get to do a couple of more in the very near future!

I hope all my winners enjoy the game!