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Old World Bestiary (Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay) [Hardcover]

Green Ronin , Simon Butler
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Black Industries (26 April 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1844162265
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844162260
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 21.3 x 27.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 593,586 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


Containing in-depth and in character details of common and not so common foes, this tome is essential reading for any Games Master. Packed with lavish artwork and detailed background material, this book contains more than dry game statistics. Old Hob, Captain Schultz, Albrecht of Nuln and a whole host of other characters explain the perils that await adventurers of the Old World. Players can read the 'common knowledge' sections and decide for themselves who to trust and who to ignore, whilst the GM benefits from the scholar's view, and sometimes even the words of the creatures themselves. A sure-fire way to add depth and texture to any campaign.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
4.1 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars How a monster supplement should be written. 16 Dec 2008
Before we go any further, scroll up and have a look at the page count of this book. It's not the thickest book out there. You have been warned.

The book cleanly divides into 2 sections - a player and a GM section if you want to call them that. The first section simply has descriptions of the beasts contained within. There are only 50 or so creatures but each one's been so much care and description that a GM can incorporate them meaningfully into a campaign making them memorable (for those who play WFRP for the campaign setting) rather than the next piece of easily forgotten sheesh kebab as in D&D.

The sections the creatures are grouped into - 'Forces of Chaos,' 'The Greenskin Races,' 'Denizens of Athel Lorien' (eg treemen, dryads), 'Children of the Horned Rat,' 'Brigands and Beasts,' The Restless Dead.' It's a pretty comprehensive list of the basic warhammer creatures though in some places (eg skaven) not as detailed as the specific supplement for race in question. Each creature is written from several points of view - first hand accounts from various people in the old world. For example orcs are written from the POV of soldiers, merchants, peasants, scholars and the orcs themselves. Some entries will have you cracking a big grin which is a testament to what a good rpg should be about:

"Oh yes, I remember the summer when we had the plague of Giant Spiders. No one knows why they swarmed down out of the hills that day, but we was overrun! Most decent folk locked themselves in their root cellars. They trampled on everything and carried off every sheep, goat and pig in the village. I heard tell that they took the mayor's daughter as well, and her only babe in arms too. Mind you, they said some funny things about him and his goings on.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Essential 15 April 2007
Given the rather limited bestiary presented in the core rule book this is pretty much an essential if you want to run a WFRP campaign, of even unlinked adventures that involve more than the handful of races given in that book.

The content is well laid out, with related creatures being grouped in their own sections instead of a pure A-Z of monsters.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Very WFRPish Bestiary 12 Mar 2009
The Old World Bestiary is a remarkable book quite unlike any other RPG bestiary you will have encountered. It presents a by-no-means comprehensive list of monsters of the Warhammer world, but it does so in such a rich and original way that the reader can overlook it's limited scope.

The book is divided into two sections - the first, and most interesting, is framed as a collection of accounts, rumours and myths about each monster taken from the inhabitants of the Old World themselves. These are intended to give objective views of the monsters and give us an idea of how they are perceived in Warhammer's unique setting.

This presentation allows monsters to remain cloaked in the ignorance, misconceptions and superstitions of each reporter. Most monsters are also given their own chance to describe themselves, which gives the GM an insight into their racial or social motivations, their character and beliefs about themselves. Given the bias of each account, though, these insights are more like clues to stimulate the GMs imagination. Areas are still left in shadow and perhaps that is for the best, since it allows us to incorporate the monsters into his own interpretation of the Old World as we see fit.

In a game like Dungeons & Dragons where the general object of a given encounter is tactical combat this first section would be interesting, but not entirely useful. In Warhammer, where atmosphere and social interaction is stressed, and where combat is fast, brutal and bloody, it is most suitable. Warhammer's very specific and individual setting demands a book like this, where nothing is as it seems and not every word can be trusted.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More than just creatures and rules 21 Nov 2007
Why is a bestiary worth 5 stars? Quite simply, it is probably the best supplement I have ever read, for any system. It has a perfect balance of rules and background fluff.
The book is divided in two - at the back we have the alphabetical list of creatures, more than enough for games of Warhammer Roleplay. All the usual suspects are included, including animals, and there are useful sections on expanded chaos mutations and a 'monster' magic career (the Shaman) which addds some handy extra elements to your games. This part of the book is absolutley fine as a stand-alone rules-only bestiary as it gives you everything you need, exactly what you want when playing or writing an adventure.

However, the first section is where this book really shines. Here we are presented with different viewpoints on all the creatures, all grouped together under more general titles, such as Greenskins and Undead. Each creature has observations from peasant farmers (often humourous) to scholars (generally more thoughtful) and, most interestingly, themselves - which can sometimes be suprisingly insightful. In its pages you can read what ignorant villagers think of Werewolves and what professional soldiers think of Demons, not to mention what Dragons think of themselves.
This is very useful from a gaming point of view, giving the thoughts, opinions and experiences of different people across the Empire.

Overall, this book gives you exactly what you want and expect from a bestiary - and then it gives a great deal more.
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