Monday, 17 May 2021

Impressions: Sharp Swords and Sinister Spells

Sometimes when reading some OSR related something I'm more interested in skimming it or reading it fairly quickly to get a sense of what it's about, what I can use it for, and possibly most of all, what ideas I can steal from it. Then as something I intend to use wholesale. Instead of writing up a full objective review I type up my impressionistic, often opinionated thoughts on it. This entry is one such rambling.

Sharp Swords and Sinister Spells

This system is comprised of two books. Sharp Swords and Sinister Spells (SS:SS), and it's Addendum. 

The main book is a fairly well put together roll under system that is pretty streamlined and elegant. It feels like something that's been playtested and come about from a homebrew ruleset where someone has simplified the rules into a nice simple set that uses a lot of OSR conventions such as usage dice.

If I weren't such a fan of Whitehack I'd probably use it as overall I prefer roll under systems. Or to put it another way I'll probably combine elements of this with Whitehack as there are some things I think it does more elegantly and the two make for good companions. I like Whitehack overall but feel it has a lot of fiddly bits that come over from B/X where this system feels much more streamlined and to embody design philosophy of the OSR a bit more in some ways.

The Addendum book I'd suggest to anyone really. It's kind of a GM guide with tons of random tables and alternative rules. It's nice to flip through and anyone could probably find something useful for their game.

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