Several Short Shadowrun Reviews

9 June, 2013

A variety of resources, new and old, for the Shadowrun RPG:

Bottled Demon, the real deal from 1990 (complete with ads!), scanned to PDF for your reading and gaming pleasure.  Not an adventure I ever played back when it was new, but one that I always wanted to.  A dangerous and mysterious magical artefact, legendary elven killers, a hard driving Lone Star cop and dragons, it hits so many of the key points of the Shadowrun setting in one adventure.  That being said, it is also an adventure written in 1980 and it really tries to force the action down certain channels but it should be a fun ride in the hands of a good GM.  Though, as with all of the scanned early adventures, it suffers from not having a conversion to the current edition of Shadowrun, especially with the 2050 setting book available that would be some good cross marketing.

Land of Promise, updating information on the elven nation of Tir Tairngire to the current era of Shadowrun.  Most of the product is in setting discussion of the Tir and its current situation, heavy on politics and attitudes light on actual data, the original Tir Tairngire book would almost seem needed to be able to use this to present the Tir as part of a campaign.  The adventure seeds are uninspired but the character trove (write ups of generic NPCs) which include a variety of gang members as well as Tir police could be quite useful.

Sprawl Sites: North America, is a collection of places each described with a color map in two versions (one with numbered areas for the GM and one without for the players).  Each location has a short description keyed to the map, a set of adventure seeds and a piece of a linked adventure that visits all of the locations.  Quite a useful resource if you are a fan of maps, the adventure seeds are mostly interesting and enough to inspire a run as needed.  Though a brief notation on the matrix security for each of the locations would have been a useful addition to the descriptions provided.

The Way of the Samurai, while I was not overly thrilled with the in game universe framework for this, the mechanics are all solid.  With new advantages (available only to the cybered), cybernetic suites designed for street samurai, and some new cyberware (revamping the old booster reflexes and new arm blades) and the archetypes -one for each race using the rules included here- are good and useful, even if they use art recycled from the first edition, which I found nostalgic more than anything else, though I miss the original character write up for the Ork street sam.

Disclosure: As a featured reviewer for RPGNow/DriveThroughRPG, I received my copy of this product for free from the publisher for the purpose of this review.

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