Lords of Gossamer & shadow

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this is an interesting RPG in that it is one of the few Diceless systems out there. not only is it Diceless, but it has no randomizers of any kind, such as cards that games like Dragonlance saga used. I found this book by accident actually, I stumbled on the kick starter for the supplement book and pledged on that as it seemed cool and they had a pledge level that included an at cost core book as an option. I did not have any idea what to expect as I had never played AMBER which is this games spiritual predecessor to this game. this book is produced by Rite publishing which was headed by Steven D Russell who sadly passed away in 2016.

the art work in this book is very nice, though very computer ish as in it seems most of the art was done via computer and none by hand, this may not be true it just seems like it. not that that diminishes from the quality of the work.the setting is nice and it inspires me to use the basic premise in other games. the premise being you are powerful lords of well gossamer and shadow and you have found your way to an infinite staircase that connects to every world every made. in some games you start as weak and have to build up, in this game you start as gods in all but name.

now to talk about the biggest issue about the game. the lack of randomizing elements. now the issue for me is that the book says that certain actions can influence a fight between equal, but give you no mechanics on how these actions interact. for example two people with the same warfare state fight one defends on attacks which action wins? the answer is I have no idea. maybe it is who ever is better at describing their actions maybe? the issue with that is what happens when on player is just not as imaginative with combat as another then will the more imaginative player always win when the stats are equal? the other issue to be is that from what i read the player/ NPC with the higher stats always wins a contest. this means a person with an average warfare (the lowest warfare ranking) fights a player/ NPC with rank one Warfare (the highest) the rank one will be the winner always. even if the average warfare player is in a giant death to the world mega invulnerable mech suit with total annihilation missiles and the rank one is naked and armed with a pool noodle the rank one player will win. this seems very off to me. now there is a chance i may be missing a rule some where, but there are very few rules for me to miss.

the other issue to me is that the game heavily hints that the players should be competitors to one another, but the setting is not clear on why this is the case. I think it is a hold over from AMBER where i believe the players played the children of large galactic dynasties and those dynasties competed over resources. that dynamic though is not in Lords so it seems to me a bit odd to assume the players would compete when there is no reason in setting for it.

over all this is very rules light and relies on narration. so if you are tired of all the dice rolls and want a game that is all about the story then this is for you. I also recommend this game to collectors as it is a nice example of a diceless rpg. especially considering AMBER is out of print and hard to find

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