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35 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A welcome addition..., 19 Mar 2003
By 
Mark Warden (Westcliff on Sea, Essex United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: d20 Modern Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook (Hardcover)
A welcome addition to the current d20 Roleplaying Game craze, Wizards brings us the d20 Modern RPG. I would highly recommend a purchase as this large book has loads of good stuff in it. This is a complete d20 game with a definate "action" bent to it. Loads of art and most of it reasonable - again it all gives a real action feel.
Three settings are suggested:
1. This is set in a world of supernatural horror - ie zombies, ghosts, demons etc as per Con-X, Chill, X-Files, Resident Evil etc. PCs have access to some minor magic and arcane items and are generally deemed to be "Shadow Hunters".
2. A world of conspiracy and psychic powers - this is your archetypal "Necroscope" meets Delta Green and Millennium game. PCs play Psionic agents and their allies.
3. Contempory fantasy meets modern day - traditional fantasy style magic and monsters break the boundaries of reality and spill into our world as per Dark Conspiracy (remember that?) and Shadowrun.
The real benefit of the d20 Modern rules are their flexibility. Just about any modern sub-genre could be played, from spy thriller to monster hunting. The game backgrounds suggested are just that - fleshed out suggestions. I would say the rules are action bent which suits a group of "adventure gamers" and rules from other d20 games like d20 Call Of Cthulhu can easily be brought in.
The basic character types (classes) are based on attributes as follows -
1. Strong Hero (STR) - focuses on physical power,eg boxers, martial artists, soldiers, athletes
2. Fast Hero (DEX) - focuses on agility, coordination and reflexes, eg athletes, pilots, drivers, users of ranged weapons
3. Tough Hero (CON) - focuses on stamina and endurance, eg bodyguards, stuntmen etc
4. Smart Hero (INT) - focuses on learning and reasoning, eg scientists, researchers, academics
5. Dedicated Hero (WIS) - focuses on willpower, common sense, perception and intuition, eg investigators, clergy, artists etc
6. Charismatic Hero (CHA) - focuses on interaction, charm and persuasivness, eg leaders, politicians, negotiators, con-men
Each class has its own "talent" tree - for example, a charismatic hero can follow a charm, fast talk or leadership talent tree which each give increasing specific bonuses in those areas as the tree is followed. (charm - favour - captivate)
This is followed up by an occupation - choose from academic to white collar worker via dilettante and law enforcement. This provides the characters skill sets. There are also a multitude of Feats to choose from including psychic powers and plenty of magic for those who can't do without it.
Generally rules are as per d20 DnD but greatly elaborated upon. One part of the rules I like (admittedly other d20 games have it but its never seems to be dealt with in the same way) is the "massive damage" rule - if a pc recieves damage greater than their CON score in one hit (which is fairly easy with some of the big guns!) they must make a FORT save DR15 or immediately be reduced to -1 hps (and bleeding out!) CON can be increased with a feat with stacking effects - I really believe it just makes the whole hp thing a little bit more workable and easier to take as combat can still be deadly for someone with 50hps.
If you are a fan of Wizards of the Coast / d20 or are looking for a multi-genre way into the d20 system, check it out - its worth the money!
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars D20 modern, 2 Dec 2005
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This review is from: d20 Modern Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook (Hardcover)
Handy book for a ref who adapts various rule books into one game.
easy to use with clear discriptions and details as appropriate.
Over all a handy book to have but not an essential
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d20 Modern Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook
d20 Modern Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook by Charles Ryan (Hardcover - 1 Nov 2002)
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