A downloadable game

The deck rumbles beneath your feet, and for the first time you hear the howl of windshear as the shuttle breaches Hercynia’s thick atmosphere.

The world below, seen through the a thick, condensation-streaked porthole: An emerald smear, scarred by ragged patches of black and brown. Patches of grey cloud cover speak to the months-long rainstorms that plague Hercynia.

“Thirty minutes out.” The shuttle pilot’s voice in your ear, shaking from the turbulence. “Leave your helms on for now, cabin’s not pressurized. And we’re going through a helluva lot of chop.”

His radio clips off. The cabin lights flicker from an especially hard knock, and the wind shear dies down, the howling engines settle to a level cruising roar. The hiss of air through your helmet subsumes all other sounds.

Below, emerald Hercynia.

Below -- somewhere below -- the mildewed halls of ancient Egregorian hives lie dormant. Waiting. 



No Room For A Wallflower, Part I and II 10 MB


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While the campaign seems interesting, it's a difficult book to read, let alone to use at a game table, and it visibly needs editing. There is no overview of the campaign for the gamemaster. Many terms are introduced without a definition (ex page 20, "The leader of the Hercynians forces near Evergreen is a Primary"; neither "Hercynians" nor "Primary" have been defined yet); you have to check either the "bestiary" or the glossary at the end of the book. The most thorough physical description of an important alien species is only given in the middle of a scene, in readaloud text; it describes a dead member of this species (page 76) and no better description is given in their bestiary entry.

The presence of a rival team is a good idea, but isn't exploited enough: they are not mentioned between their arrival and the climax.

There is also a structural problem with Act 2: it consists of two different, parallel series of events happening simultaneously in two different places that are separated by enemy troops.

All of this feels too bad because otherwise, the game's themes seem to be respected, the ambiance looks great and the story is quite imaginative.

I would be willing to excuse the vagueness of the aliens if it wasn't out of order. It's almost like the atmosphere of mystery is something that they want even the GM to be inside. That's cool, but when you lay out the event structure so rigidly, it doesn't work.