Monday, April 9, 2018

Some Thoughts On Amazing Adventures Manual of Monsters By Jason Vey From Troll Lord Games

So today I got off the phone with one of my players & we've been discussing the pros & cons of  Amazing Adventures Manual of  Monsters by Jason Vey. Now I'm no stranger to Pulp & Golden Age superhero games I've run everything from Mercenaries, Spies, & Private Eyes to Call of Cthulhu along with Justice Inc. I've even done the run of White Wolf's Aberrant line straight down through TSR Marvel Super Heroes & D.C. Heroes in every edition. When it comes to the OSR material I own & like Raiders of The Lost Artifacts.
There's something solid ideas in this book as a Monster Manual but systems in this book feel very plugged into the implied  world setting  of Amazing Adventures.

The other systems in this book focus on the management of the Pulp era enemies & monsters with an eye toward  role playing monsters, handling combat with monsters, creating monsters & using monsters as PC races. Sure there's nothing really that we haven't seen before but there's a certain dungeon master  gravitas
about this product. While this an OSR style product, I'm really not sure if this one's for me & my group of players. There's a lot of implied mythology between the sheets here so to speak with nationalized monsters within the world of Amazing Adventures.
The layout is solid, the writing is top drawer, but something feels weird about
Amazing Adventures Manual of  Monsters. I'm a Fiend Folio type of guy where the monsters are  not as stitched into & dialed into the world setting. I've heard time & again how the monsters of the Fiend Folio are strange, not complete, & somehow too goofy. But I like the free rolling nature of the Fiend Folio where the DM can fit the monsters & customize them to his or her own campaign setting.
Pulp era monsters have a slightly different take on them then normal  AD&D monsters. Pulp era monsters are as much obstacle as they are pulp era road blocks for adventuring parties.

Amazing Adventures Manual of  Monsters. does a lot of the heavy lifting for the dungeon master by taking and setting the monsters up for the dungeon master. This isn't a bad thing but its a very bold style choice on the dungeon master's front. I'm just not sure that this is for me as a dungeon master & there's a lot of the cinematic about these monsters and the Amazing Adventures system actively encourages a very pulpy and daring style of play. This isn't a bad thing but its got a very different focus then say the Advanced Dungeons & Dragon's Monster Manual or some of the other monster books on the OSR market. I'd give this one a four out of five.

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