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Uranium Fever
by Paul E. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/27/2018 02:39:53

I’ve always been a sucker for mining, perhaps because of all those hours I spent playing Eve Online digging out Veldspar and Scordite and trying to find a nice load of Golden Omber so that I could upgrade my mining ship … and mining should make a great solo past-time. Uranium Fever provides you with all the essentials for a game of space mining; initially the book describes asteroid mining in the context of Stellagama’s These Stars Are Ours! setting, and there are ideas there for use in any SF setting. I particularly like the miner’s slang table. Neat! To add variety Stellagama has provided three variant careers for miners, the interdependent miner, the corporate miner and the planetary miner. The event and mishap tables are full of flavor and gaming hooks.

The meat of the book is composed of the prospecting and mining rules, and these are made up of dice roll ‘chains’ that eventually lead the player to an asteroid of ‘X’ value that he can mine. Earlier, when I said the Uranium Fever provides ‘the essentials for a game of space mining’ I sort of meant it, this is a ‘game’ in itself that could easily be played solo, the characters trying to locate and exploit bigger and higher yield rocks. Just as free traders chase the next speculative cargo, these miners are searching for that rock full of radioactives. But of course that is the problem, too … few gaming groups want to mine asteroids in every session – there has to be adventure too! Just as Marc Miller envisaged that speculative trade and the life of a free trader should serve merely as a vehicle for adventure, Uranium Fever should be used in much the same vein. ‘What can happen while we are mining?’ ‘What will we really find?’. Alien artifacts, pirate bases, lost shuttles, abandoned cargoes, fugitives from justice, wrecked battlecruisers … the genre is filled with exciting plot elements that sit ‘out there’ in the asteroids waiting to be found. Traveller itself based two of its adventures around such a situation, Adventure 1: The Kinunir and Adventure 6: Expedition to Zhodane. And let’s not forget that the TV show The Expanse opened with the ice mining ship Canterbury responding to a distress call in the asteroid belt…

Buried in the asteroid mining mechanics is a great section on the legalities and processes, including claim beacons, reporting claims, claim jumping and selling claims on to bigger corporate outfits. Rounding off the book are three small mining ships suitable for a little group of mining characters, the 10-ton gig (a shuttle), the 100-ton Prospector and the 600-ton Miner. These designs come with great deckplans, and are purposefully designed to resemble the ‘low-tech’ spacecraft that you see in The Expanse; perfect designs for my own settings in fact.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Uranium Fever
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TSAO: Wreck in the Ring
by pookie u. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/17/2017 06:47:27

A nice, little adventure, Borderlands Adventure 1: Wreck in the Ring should provide two good sessions of play, whatever game system the Game Master runs it in. It has a pleasing workmanlike, blue collar sensibility which should make for an interesting and low key change of pace. Even when the ‘monster’ does appear, it is done in a low-key fashion such that it feels like one possible consequence of the players’ actions rather than the whole point of the scenario. Not every Science Fiction adventure needs to feel as if the crew are just going to work, but when the Game Master knows that it is what his campaign could deal with, Borderlands Adventure 1: Wreck in the Ring is a good choice.

A full review of this scenario can be found at Reviews from R'lyeh: http://rlyehreviews.blogspot.co.uk/2017/09/wreck-on-borderlands.html



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
TSAO: Wreck in the Ring
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TSAO: Wreck in the Ring
by Daniel M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/01/2017 21:55:26

To say that I was underwhelmed by this adventure is itself an understatement. A crashed starship, a psionic monster, a very specific campaign background and absolutely nothing original.

If the purpose of this product had been to detail the starship used, and provided a supplementary adventure that would have been more practical. But even the deck plans for the ship are a disappointment, tiny diagrams on a single page. As the focus of the adventure full miniature ready deck plans should and could have been included.

I suspect the author, Robert Weaver, was hoping to publish this work as a magazine article before being prompted to try and sell it as a full on adventure.

Stick with the classic Shadows/Annic Nova for a better laid out adventure and “dungeon” crawl.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Creator Reply:
I am sorry to hear that you were disappointed with the adventure. We will take your criticism to heart and we hope that you will like our further products better.
Near Space
by Tim K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/30/2017 08:39:17

A great deal of thought and effort went into what is a uniformly high quality production. They've done an excellent job of reducing the space near Sol into a functional 2d map suitable for any space opera, but clearly done in a Traveller style. Due to the excellence reflected in all aspects of Near Space, this fairly small product put Stellagama on my list of publishers to watch.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Near Space
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Thank you for your great review!
High Resolution Blank Star Maps
by Eric B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/14/2017 23:22:38

These are a set of blank hexes on a map. Straight forward, but so much more handy than you could ever imagine. If you have ever wanted to make your own maps for a game, and tried to make a page of hexes, you know how valuable a resource these are. I love them!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
High Resolution Blank Star Maps
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Thank you for your wonderful review.
TSAO: 50 Wonders of the Reticulan Empire
by Jeffrey N. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/02/2017 18:42:41

Well laid out book. Very good ideas for the pending campaign (maybe even SOLO....).

Good rationale is given for the tech. It all makes sense to the 'little green men', their love for high technology to overcome their limitations, and presentation to implement it.

The Cyber and Robotic sections are highly welcome, along with the other sections.

Once I downloaded the PDF, I read it, and was pleased with the purchase. It feels like a steal, but its priced very reasonable.

It will blend into any Traveller\2d6 campaign with minimal effort.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
TSAO: 50 Wonders of the Reticulan Empire
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Thanks for the wonderful review!
The Space Patrol
by Jeffrey N. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/20/2017 20:30:38

Getting into the product, and it has some nice additions to my possible campaigns



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Space Patrol
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Thanks for the wonderful review!
TSAO: These Stars Are Ours!
by P-O B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/05/2017 13:34:35

“The more deeply we are cast under a story’s spell, the more potent its influence.” Underlying all passionate Traveller fans is a desire to tell and participate in grand science fiction narratives. We can worry about Canon and setting and what game Traveller is supposed to be. Or we can write sweeping histories such as “These Stars Are Ours!“. Published by Stellagama Publishing, its goal is to provide an immersive Traveller universe that explores a variety of themes and stories, drawing upon well known science fiction tropes. A consequence of separating the “engine” of Traveller from the “setting” is that it liberates writers and publishers to create their own settings for adventures. Echoing the great product the Twilight Sector, “These Stars Are Ours!” is a successful and comprehensive setting that includes new and modified rules relevant to the setting and takes advantage of Stellagama Publishing’s existing work in extending the Cepheus Engine. It entrances the reader immediately and provides a powerful basis for Traveller adventures.

Alegis Downport has already written an informative review. The comment thread below the review already contains positive responses from the publisher promising further material for the setting – great news for fans. This review will comment more on the history and nature of setting itself.

The star charts draw upon Stellagama’s earlier work “Near Space“. It makes Earth (“Terra”) the centre of the setting – and so players have an immediate stake in the game, connecting to the future of our own planet. The setting approximately 400 years into the future, not thousands, also making it more immediate to us as readers and players. The period is clearly parallel to Traveller 2300 but this setting has a very different flavour. The Reticulans are the almond-shaped-eyed aliens of Area 51 fame who conquer Terra and rule it with an iron fist until thrown off by the free-spirited, fighting and proud Terrans. Play begins in the aftermath of this revolutionary war.

The history of the war itself is a great read. This reviewer saw clear parallels to the Russian Civil War of the 1920’s and to World War II – there was even a ‘Stalingrad’ moment in this setting’s history. While the ‘fighting Terran’ spirit is reminiscent of fiction such as Starship Troopers, the setting is also clearly influenced by the gritty realism of Firefly and its themes of the real social consequences of war and oppression. This theme carries through in describing the history and culture of the various non-human sophonts of the setting. None are cardboard cut-out “bad guys” and all have redeeming qualities as well as flaws. How these various aliens react to the Reticulan Imperium and the United Terran Republic causes us to reflect upon the reasons for our actions – the best part of role play games (although I also enjoy blowing things up).

The patrons provided are all great hooks firmly grounded in this detailed and nuanced setting. There are familiar industrial espionage, smuggling and exploration themes, but all layered with the particular history of the setting, including a mysterious race of Precursors who have left artefacts. But on top of this there are very specific adventures interacting with the various alien races in ways other than at the other end of a weapon. The Reticulans are divided into competing feudal houses. The Zhuzzh are untrustworthy and nomadic – but as a wise man once said, you can always trust an untrustworthy man to be untrustworthy. The Cicek are fierce fighters and dashing pirates, but also divided along gender lines Aslan-style. The Ssesslessians are mysterious respecters of ancient traditions. Once more familiar with the setting, all of these species would make interesting player characters.

This setting book also offers careers and advanced career rules including setting-based events that affect characters, drawing players into the history and engaging them with the background. All of the new rules and alternate career paths are clearly based on the story needs of the setting. This is an excellent use of a rules engine: it obeys the story needs, not the other way around.

While the deck plans and starship designs are few, the generic ship designs from the Cepheus Engine will fit this setting well. The publishers have promised further ships for the setting in the future. The ‘flying saucer’ designs were a real treat, and the text justifies ‘mysterious UFOs’ at TL13 by showing how mysterious true gravitics would be to 20th Century earth – but always by example, never by telling the reader. This kind of excellent descriptive writing strengthens the setting and is an excellent example of ‘show don’t tell’ in RPG writing.

The star maps provided give plenty of contrasting settings for adventure, right on the border of four different political entities. “The Frontier” is always a good source of adventures and conflict. What These Stars Are Ours! shows is that you can pack a lot of adventure and campaign ideas into just two subsectors. This is plenty for a typical Traveller sandbox campaign.

Priced at a very reasonable $20, any Referee can pick this up and plan adventures for hungry players quickly. You will not regret the purchase.

Original review here: http://zho.berka.com/2017/04/05/these-stars-are-ours/



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
TSAO: These Stars Are Ours!
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TSAO: These Stars Are Ours!
by Rudolf S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/20/2017 11:39:28

A very interesting alternative setting for the Cepheus Engine and related 2D6 science fiction games. I especially liked the detailed history of the setting and the comprehensive descriptions of the Terran society and of the societies of the various alien species, they make it easy to "get into" the setting. Of course, the other parts of the setting are also very interesting and useful, too. Overall highly recommended, even people who do not intend to use the setting itself can find and borrow some nice ideas. I am looking forward to additional material for this setting.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Creator Reply:
Thanks for the wonderful review! There are indeed further and very exciting products being worked on, adventures and ship-books included!
Near Space
by Jeremiah E. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/10/2017 10:49:46

This is exactly what I was looking for in my home grown Traveller-esque campaign. Thank you for the product!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Near Space
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Thank you for your review!
The Space Patrol
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/10/2017 00:32:55

A four page introduction is followed by sections on the History and Mission of the Space Patrol. It's generic enough to fit into any campaign. Then there are several sections on codes of law, prize money, jurisdiction, interstelalr law enforcement, legal and court systems. I haven't looked at these sections in depth yet, but they seem like they would be quite useful, particularly if your player characters tend to skirt the law a bit. Next comes sections on organisation, rank and careers (creating a Space Patrol Officer). A must for any module describing a new organisation. Next up is ships and equipment. also a must when presenting a new organisation. The section on Space Patrol campaigns describes what sort of setting works best, and how to integrate the space patrol into existing campaign universes. Helpful advice is always appreaciated. The final sections provide some typical (or atypical npcs), adventure seeds and some scenarios. Again very useful and a must in this type of book.

The layout is pretty good and sections are fairly easy to find, and I didn't notice too many typos. All in all, a pretty good book, that adds useful material to the referees gaming arsenal. Buy it.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Space Patrol
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Thank you for your great review!
Near Space
by Raymond M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/21/2016 11:17:43

If you ever wanted to play in a near-earth patch of space but were daunted by the fact that we actually know about the planets out there, then this book is for you. Stellagamma not only does the work of researching the star system in our neigborhood and presenting them in a Traveller compatible format, they have also provided expanded world creation rules and guidlines so you can create your own realistic planets. The most amazing thing is the price and the licenses. You can use this however you want in whatever product you want, and the prive is Pay what you Want.
Methane oceans. Rainstorms of molten glass. Cryo-volcanoes and Super-Earths - you can have all of these and more, with Near Space. Recommended.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Near Space
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Thank you for your wonderful review!
The Space Patrol
by Brian I. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/06/2016 21:19:48

Solid book! It wasn't quite as Terran Trade Authority as my tired brain was wanting in the moment (Space Patrol!), but a well done look at a "missing" branch. Especially well suited to plug and play into an emergent 2d6 classic science fiction "Empire" setting.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Space Patrol
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Thank you for your excellent review!
Near Space
by Thomas E. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/04/2016 22:31:18

This is a really great little set of well-researched hex maps of the area around the Solar System.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Near Space
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Thank you for the good review!
The Space Patrol
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 10/31/2016 00:07:10

A decent treatment of an interstellar law enforcement agency for the Cepheus Engine Core Rules (or even gasp Mongoose Traveller). The Space Patrol is presented very much in the tradition of Classic SF forebearers such as E.E. Doc Smith, Robert A. Heinlein, Harry Harrison, and Jack Vance's Gaean Reach stories. It would have been nice to have some information on the role of psionics in the Space Patrol - does the patrol maintain units of trained psionicists, does it investigate psionic crimes, is evidence gathered via telepathy or clairvoyance admissable in court, etc. It also would be nice to have a bit more detail on the kinds of criminal activities that the Space patrol targets. What does organized crime look like in universes where there is FTL travel but no FTL communication? Other than these two minor caveats, this is a solid book covering a law enforcement campaign style rarely tackled by SF RPGs. I note with interest that the book is listed as being both Cepheus Engine compatible and compatible with the 2D6 OGL SciFi system (with a nice logo!) Does this imply that Stellagama Publishing are working on their own derivative of the old Mongoose Traveller SRD? Curiously the copy of the Open Game Licence on the final page is missing making it difficult to say for certain - they probably want to fix this for legal reasons.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Space Patrol
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Creator Reply:
Thank you for the wonderful review! As for your question, we are not working right now on any ruleset - the Cepheus Engine is perfect for our needs. However, there are other rulesets using the 2D6 OGL Sci-Fi rules, and our products are compatible with them as well. Regarding the OGL license - good catch! This somehow fell out of editing and will be corrected ASAP.
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