Sunday, April 8, 2012

Armchair Reviews: Leverage -- Hitters, Hackers and Thieves

Leverage has shot to the forefront of my go-to RPGs for modern day espionage, detective, and criminal campaigns. I've been reading through both the RPG and the sourcebooks, and I really like how it's put together.

Age of the Geek, baby.
It is still counter to my preferred simulationist game system approach, but it causes less coredumps to my GM operating system than another system like FATE. Perhaps Cortex Plus will be my gateway drug to FATE, but for now, I'm liking it.

I think that the use of the polyhedral dice probably have a comforting effect.

Anyway, here's the first of my reviews on the Leverage sourcebooks:

I kind of gave the Leverage RPG a pass when it came out because -- I didn't watch the show.

But after I finally encountered first the Smallville RPG, then the Marvel Heroic Roleplaying RPG, I decided to pick up Leverage to give it another try. Then I decided to take a look at the sourcebooks for it.

This book, Leverage: Hitters, Hackers, and Thieves, is an indispensable tool for both players and GMs (Fixers in this RPG) interested in rounding out and deepening the capabilities, backgrounds, rivals, and approaches for these types of roles in the game. While it does not (and cannot) give an encyclopedic account of all things Hitter/Hacker/Thief, it does bolster the treatment given in the rulebook with key points in the history and rationale of the role, very flavorful talents to broaden the cinematic treatment in the game, and some Master Class options to make the PCs and NPCs even more awesome than they already are.

There are also additional rules for Locations in this sourcebook to make things more interesting for the Thief (and everyone else) in your Crew. As a bonus, you get several technology-centric Jobs to take your Crew through.

In addition, the book is written clearly, while successfully providing both information and flavor to further reinforce the genre of the game.

If you're into Leverage, pick it up!

As a result, I may begin revisiting my old 'spies' posts regarding the genre of espionage. This game, in particular, makes me think classic Mission: Impossible TV show scenarios are possible to run in an RPG.

And yes, I have finally seen the first season of Leverage.

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That's my side of things. Let me know what you think, my friend.

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