Sunday, October 6, 2013


The above photo worked  on my little Lovecraftian heart. 
 Go here and take a look
For some months I've been contemplating this game. 
I'm both a Robert Howard and Lovecraft fiend so this game appears right up my alley.
So I've been saving for some months to get this one and I'm all in for the print edition of this one. 

According to the introduction on their website : 
ASTONISHING SWORDSMEN & SORCERERS of HYPERBOREA™ is sword-and-sorcery role-playing at its pinnacle. Play an Amazon fighter, Atlantean magician, Esquimaux shaman, Hyperborean warlock, Ixian necromancer, Keltic barbarian, Kimmerian cataphract, Pictish thief, Viking berserker, or one of many other possibilities.

I love box sets and this one's content's sound really nice. 
Product Format: 8 x 10 x 2.5-inch boxed set that includes a 252-page, 7 x 8.5-inch, spiral-bound Players’ Manual; 236-page, 7 x 8.5-inch, spiral-bound Referee’s Manual; a 22 x 28-inch poster map of Hyperborea, 6 character sheets, and 6 polyhedral dice.

This one sounds hefty and the play by play that I've read puts this game squarely in my sights. I love retroclones and I came out to ask if this one was compatible with the retroclones currently on the market? The answer I got back was a solid yes. 
The other thing that convinced me that this one might be a solid investiment was the contents of the player's hand book. 

Here you go. 

  • Introduction (brief introduction to game)
  • Dice Conventions (how to use dice)
  • Character Creation (steps to creating a character)
  • Attributes (strength, dexterity, constitution, intelligence, wisdom, charisma)
  • Races (Common, Amazon, Atlantean, Esquimaux, Hyperborean, Ixian, Kelt, Kimmerian, Kimmeri-Kelt, Pict, Pict Half-Blood, Viking)
  • Physique (height, weight, age determination, etc.)
  • Classes (fighter, magician, cleric, thief)
  • Subclasses (Fighter) (barbarian, berserker, cataphract, paladin, ranger, warlock)
  • Subclasses (Magician) (illusionist, necromancer, pyromancer, witch)
  • Subclasses (Cleric) (druid, monk, priest, shaman)
  • Subclasses (Thief) (assassin, bard, legerdemainist, scout)
  • Alignment (Law / Civilization vs. Chaos / Barbarism; Lawful Good, Lawful Evil, Chaotic Good, Chaotic Evil, Neutrality)
  • Other Statistics (armour class, fighting ability, hit dice, hit points, movement, saving throw)
  • Background (secondary skills, languages)
  • Weapon Skills (favoured weapons, adding new weapon skills, weapon mastery, melee attack rate / missile rate of fire)
  • Money (gold, electrum, silver, copper; exchange rates; starting gold)
  • Equipment (armour, shields, melee weapons, missile weapons, general equipment, provisions, religious items, clothing, livestock, tack and harness, vehicles, services)
  • Spells (starting spells, acquiring spells, spell memorization, spell casting)
  • Spell Tables (seven disciplines of magic: magician, cleric, druid, illusionist, necromancer, pyromancer, witch)
  • Spells A–Z (over 400 spells)
  • Adventure (adventuring party, hirelings, henchmen, loyalty and morale, base of operations, adventure preparation, adventure actions and procedures, non-standard action resolution, etc.)
  • Time (10-second round, 10-minute turn)
  • Movement (dungeon movement, wilderness movement, transportation methods, getting lost, encumbrance, etc.)
  • The Encounter (encountering beasts, monsters, and men; reaction and evasion rules)
  • Combat (melee, missiles, magic, movement; attack roll, combat matrix, attack modifiers, combat steps, action resolution, morale)
  • Combat Actions (charge, flaming oil, holy oil / water, magic, melee, missiles, mounted combat, movement, turn undead, unarmed combat)
  • Advanced Combat (Optional) (22 advanced combat actions, critical hits)
  • Saving Throw (saving throws, spell resistance, item saving throws)
  • Damage (wounds, death and dying, healing, falling damage)
  • Special Damage (energy drain, lycanthropy, madness, poison)
  • Experience Points (gaining XP, gaining levels of experience)
  • Aerial Combat (rules for aerial melee, missile, spell casting, etc., covering a variety of flight methods)
  • Waterborne Expeditions (vessels, weather, wind, icebergs, whirlpools, getting lost at sea, and sea encounters; naval combat is discussed, including rules for catapults, ballistas, grappling, oar shearing, and ship repair; underwater combat)
  • Castles and Strongholds (castle and stronghold construction, costs, personnel, resources, and of course: the angry villager!)
  • Warfare and Siege (rules for handling mass combat using a calculator system that accounts for a variety of circumstances from troop types, to locations, to PC / NPC involvement, siege weaponry, troop movements, provisions, etc.)
  • Cooperative Gaming (closing advice for all participants of the game)

    I heard a metric ton of advice from friends saying that the players book was only 10.00 for the pdf but call me old fashioned but I want a solid dead tree edition of a book. Seriously, there have been winter's here where the power has gone down and lap tops, cell phones, tablets, etc are all useless.
    A flashlight, some glow in the dark dice, and a cup of tea then its game on.
    While I do think that the 'official game world' looks fantastic I've got my own campaign world looking right at me.

    Look for a unboxing photos to follow in two weeks! So looking forward for this one and don't think I've forgotten about Crypts and Things as well here. More on that later!

    I'd like to have gotten the adventures

And this one but money is a wee bit tight right at the moment. So reviews are going to have to wait a bit yet. 


  1. This one has been on my radar also. I'm looking forward to hearing what you think of it.

  2. Wow, that looks very very well put-together. Thanks for the photos, Needles. I might need to add this to the wishlist.

  3. I bought the PDF, and feel like I paid for a vanilla OGL compedium made by an editor that adores REH. It even gives up the low-sorcery tweaks that Mongoose added for their Conan pastiche. Save some gold and just get Jason Vey's Secrets of Acheron free resource.

  4. Thanks Bill, I've been wanting this one for awhile. And I'll let you know what up with it.
    Gorgon those aren't my photos and I can't take credit for them. This one has been on my wish list for awhile.

    Lee B - "I bought the PDF, and feel like I paid for a vanilla OGL compendium made by an editor that adores REH."
    That's kinda what I'm after actually.
    "It even gives up the low-sorcery tweaks that Mongoose added for their Conan pastiche" I've got the Mongoose material and books but the problem is that I can't use the D20 material without dropping a whole bunch of what makes it shall we say unique. This is really good news and thanks for letting me know.
    " Save some gold and just get Jason Vey's Secrets of Acheron free resource."
    I know Jason Vey pretty well and while I think he did a fantastic job with the Secrets of Acheron free material I'm not planning on using the Conan material with this. I've been in the middle of writing my own campaign pastiche. Jason's stuff is far too Conancentric even though its some of the best material currently out there for handling this stuff.

  5. I'm looking forward to seeing what kind of wild campaign you work up using these rules.

  6. I've got something very cool in mind but its going to be a bit longer I'm working on something special with Stars Without Number currently!

    1. I had some credit at Noble Knight Games so used it to pick up the boxed set and Charnel Crypt. I'm seeing some AS&SH in my future!

  7. Yah! Sounds great Bill!
    I've got to say that I ordered this box set from the author's website and sent him a payment. He's been fantastic! He's emailed me when he received the payment, when my order was shipped and how, as well as messaged me on Facebook. That's how customer service is supposed to work!
    Noble Knight has done right by me for all the years I've worked with em. I'm very exited for ya Bill!
    Exalt man!


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