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Stargate RPG Public Beta Rules 1.0.0

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Mimnock

   5 of 5 members found this review helpful 5 / 5 members

I'm still looking through it, but so far I like what I'm reading. I really like how the levels go up to 5, based on XP spent, and then you can continue to develop your character by spending XP on feats and perks. I'm hoping to start up a test group to play test it every other weekend. I'll post more after I run a few sessions.

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NickEast

   4 of 4 members found this review helpful 4 / 4 members

Please understand I mean no disrespect, but as a Stargate fan I have no choice but to be critical. To start with though, I really like the concept of using episodes and seasons to represent campaigns, which I already intended to do for my Stargate and Star Trek games.

However, even considering this is an early version, I have to honestly say the game as a whole is nowhere near what I would expect for a Stargate RPG. I understand the lack of a lore overview and certain mistakes, as at this stage this is focused on rules and playtesting, so I'm giving it the benefit of the doubt. But my fears are confirmed with the very first paragraphs: this game seems to be firmly centered on Stargate Phoenix as opposed to the Stargate franchise. The entire book seems to be written entirely within a very limited scope, regardless if you could adapt the rules for a different kind of setting within the Stargate universe, and completely leaving out (references to) Atlantis and Destiny as possible settings (even if more detailed information and expansion rules would be reserved for a supplemental book). Based on the original AEG version, and other RPGs based on IPs (most recently Star Trek Adventures), this just seems too limited in its current form.

So unfortunately, if these things don't change for the final book, I'm afraid I see no reason to spend my limited time and funds on it, at which point I will move on to other things. I will keep an eye on things to make a better judgment as things progress, but these are my feelings about where we stand now.

I do sincerely hope the best for the designers and that those that do like this version of the RPG have a great time. I definitely don't want to detract from their fun. It just doesn't seem the version for me.

Response from the author:

Please note the lore chapter has not been added to the book. There will be a whole chapter called "Stargate Program Brief" with this information. I encourage you to check back for future versions.

 

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Balthazar

   2 of 2 members found this review helpful 2 / 2 members

I was somewhat concerned when I heard this was based on 5e but those worries have been mostly put to rest.

The classes aren't just modern variations of D&D classes, they're their own distinct entities that at first glance will all be useful. The level cap of 5 with subsequent customization keep things nice and focused in the early game and offers players the chance to really experiment later on.

Some of the class abilities and weapon mods do need to be rewritten for clarification or balance and the whole thing needs a lot of editing, but that's to be expected of a beta. Hopefully we'll see more content and polish in future builds.

All in all this looks great and I have high hopes for the future. It is serviceable in its current state and I'll be pitching it to my 5e group.

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Megan

   2 of 2 members found this review helpful 2 / 2 members

At an initial glance it looks good - although the 'chapter heading' illustration looks a bit like a still from Wormhole X-treme!

I'd suggest using the word 'Species' rather than 'Race'. There are some people who get confused and start seeing racism in games that use the word 'race' for different sentient species especially when you give different species differing stats, abilities etc. Using 'species' instead makes it plain what is going on. That said, it is good that the game caters for playing just about any sentient species that the galaxy has thrown up. A Unas could be fun to play!

In the character creation chapter, it might be beneficial to add a list of species, origins, classes etc. available as a quick reference even though it's worth reading the appropriate chapter before making your choice (at least, the first time you create a character).

The equipment chapeter is obviously incomplete: do remember to include the MALP (there isn't even a heading for it). What is there needs a good proof-read (do you want errors reporting?). You also need to add UAVs/Drones. Oh, and rules for spacesuits. Also different space-capable craft, the different Goa'uld ships, etc, that might be encountered (they can feature later on in the combat chapters too).

Feats are likewise a work in progress but there are some neat ideas in there - like the use of medical procedures in combat and the concept of downtime feats. Not sure about the mechanism for the downtime feats - perhaps each period of downtime, the benefits of, eg. cookie or virtuoso, may be applied to a different team member, rather than the requirement to take the feat multiple times?

Using Ability Scores: very dlear explanations. Nice!

Good GM (gatemaster - neat!) advice. Do make sure the chapter heading gets changed from 'Gatermaster' to 'Gatemaster' though! Good ideas for structuring a sequence of sessions to give that TV series feel.... and the idea of 'continuity correction' is excellent.

The Life Forms chapter would be a good place to provide resources for other sentient species that are not playeable - primarily because they are opposed to the Taur'i, or because they are friendly but too powerful, like the Asgard.

Overall, there's the potential for a great game here. I look forward to reviewing the finished work on RPG Resource in due course :)

Do you intend to do an 'episode guide' book (or books!) in the future. Have a fairly detailed synopsis of each episode of the TV show, stat up NPCs/Monsters/novel equipment, provide ideas for further adventures stemming from what occured in the episode or using NPCs/equipment encountered. (See Mongoose Publishing's Babylon 5 books for good examples of this approach.)

Response from the author:

Please note the lore chapter has not been added to the book. There will be a whole chapter called "Stargate Program Brief" with this information. I encourage you to check back for future versions.

 

thanks

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randalar

   6 of 7 members found this review helpful 6 / 7 members

So, I'm going to go against the grain here and hopefully not get too many flames.  I have things I like, and things I don't.  I like the classes, and find the different way of leveling up after 5th interesting.  I find the idea of episodes an interesting take and like the idea of doing that.  I do love the idea that you've emphasized technology, not magic.  That's the way it *should* be. The artwork looks rather cartoony but I guess that's a matter of taste.  A couple big disappointments though.  Races.  Aturen. Seriously.  The game is supposed to be canon from what I read, so you created a non-canon elf species with the absurd idea that the Nox actually shared some of their technology with them. Your play test form even explicitly mentions them as an elf - this is not D&D, please don't shoehorn in D&D races with gimmicks.  There are other canon species that could have been put in instead.  This one is just, for me, an awful idea.  If you really want to veer off canon to make your own stuff up, I'd rather see it in optional splat books.  I guess as a GM (love 'gatemaster'!) I could always ban it from use but knowing the would be in the Living game re-adds the cringe.  Phoenix site. Ugh. Again, this would be better as a splat book.  I would like to see SGC be central to the game as it was in the series.  When I hear Stargate RPG that's what I think of rather than first thinking of a secret site.  I hope you rethink this some.  Or if not a splat book for SGP, still can make a reference to it, but the complete abandonment of SGC is a huge let down (and this is from someone who was super-excited about it). 

I think this game has a lot of potential.  What you have here is a good start, but could be great with changes.  I *had* been eager to even contribute to the Kickstarter, but now I'm not quite as gung-ho about it as I was and am not sure I want to invest large amounts of money.  I'll definitely keep an eye out for any beta updates, and continue to re-evaluate.  I really, really want to like and play this and I do appreciate the effort you've put into it thus far.

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Calyboi96

  

Probably going to get a lot of flak for this review, but I just don't think you're on the right track at all with this game. Mechanically, I just don't  feel like I'm playing a game in the StarGate setting, the "I go you go" nature of the combat just doesn't simulate the cinematic running fights of the TV series, while weapon balance and the nature of the system makes this feel very much like an exercise in rocket-tag and not the exciting back and forth action of the various TV shows. That aside, I feel there is an overall emphasis on combat over social encounters, whereas StarGate has always hued closer to the Star Trek ethos of characters combining their skills to overcome adversity with outside of the box solutions and violence is typically the weapon of last resort. 

I also have issues with the races available, namely the Aturen, who feel like a bunch of special snowflakes, taking up space that could be used by another canon race. Suffice to say, I won't be backing this, which saddens me deeply, as I really do love the StarGate Universe. While there is alot of potential in the game concept, I just don't feel the D20 System is, in any way shape or form, the right fit for the fast-paced, social focus of StarGate SG-1 or it's affiliated TV shows.   

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