Saturday, September 10, 2016

Review & Commentary on Beasties from Night Owl Workshop For Your Old School Campaigns

What has a boat load of monsters, is open game content, and isn't getting enough OSR press? What also has: 27 Monsters, 6 NPC's,  37 Drawings!, 5 Maps 7 & a flying  "Megadungeon" sample of pain for your PC's? Beasties from Night Owl Workshop is something of a throwback product. Its a grab bag of OSR goodness that works really nicely for what it sets out to do and that's bring lots of pain to the adventure table top. Beasties basically is one of those throwback products similar to some of the independent Eighties OSR products that supported OD&D & AD&D. These were grab bag products with monsters, traps, tricks, NPC's and other material that you could stick into your own home campaigns without some company setting clogging up your home campaign. That's exactly the niche that Beasties from Nite Owl Workshop seeks to fill. And it does it very well.

Everything here is killer and not superficial BS filler. You get monsters with flavor & old school  gravitas like the bone creeper below here. There are conversion notes for using these horrors  for "Original Fantasy Rules" but lots of conversion notes are given for OSRIC and Basic Fantasy. There are also some conversion notes for Nite Owl Workshop's other games Colonial Troopers, Guardians and Warriors of the Red Planet. Why can't other OSR products do this to save dungeon masters like me who don't have time to do conversions notes like this. It saves a ton of time!

The monsters have just enough flavor without overwhelming their placement in your old school campaigns. Artwork & layout are top notch, Nite Owl doesn't do Kickstarters or other BS, the artist, his crew, simply release the product. This is one of those products whose contents have been released under the OGL open game content and some of these monsters would make unique boss monsters for ruins or hex crawls. The quality is right on the high side of what I'm looking for my own campaign. The maps are very well done as one would expect from an artist whose work appeared during the D20 boom. The work here is top draw with all of the monsters getting an illustration & a good set of stats. The maps are well done too with a flying megdungeon of doom dominating the later half of the book. You get a cutaway map job like this one as well that can provide yet another setting option for WoRP or OD&D style games. 

Beasties is a great book & an excellent resource given what you get for your money & the investment of time. All in all I think its really well done OSR product and one that I'd love to see more of its like on the market. This is a good product for a wide array of OSR games and it fills its niche very nicely. Five out of five in my humble opinion.

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