Author Topic: review: Lords of Madness  (Read 1756 times)


Entsuropi

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Re: review: Lords of Madness
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2005, 11:56:06 PM »
My basic problem with the review is that it says what the book has, but not how good it is. No mention of whether the feats are well done, if the society elements both make sense and are freaky enough for abberants, anything like that. It's a wordy contents page. :(
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Fellfrosch

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Re: review: Lords of Madness
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2005, 12:35:47 AM »
I thought the same thing.  I'm kind of new to doing reviews, so you should probably critic them if you want better ones in the future.  But I think I said what I thought about the book more or less.  Its like a DnD book about Cthulhuoid campaigns and is kinda weak on the player side vs DM side.  It goes into six abberations in great detail, the rest are given some general info in the first few pages (except the Chuul that get a sidebar about their origins... or was that in Stormwrack?  I forget now).  And the new ones just have general monster entries.  So if you want some more info on mind flayers for a game you are DMing, then it will have stuff.  If you want to beat the hell out of mind flayers as a PC, there's a bit, but not all that much.  And then it has the clocks... 4 out of 6 (although I think anything above 5 is in theory reserved for truly great stuff), I thought it was alright, nothing totally out there.  I think it also didn't really break any new ground by just playing it as DnD + Cthulhu.

Plus saying more than I did by myself would mean regurgitating big chunks of the book, and probably of the stuff that people are buying the book for (ie origins and society of Cthulhu, which takes everything you find in the MM and XPH, like how they are from some destroyed world-spanning empire, and adds some bizzaro twist).  I didn't really care for that the background of the aboliths would limit the world history to something like 5-10 thousand years old (the world before that time having been some bizzaro world where aboliths were the norm and humanoids of any kind did not exist... um, just doesn't work IMO).
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Entsuropi

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Re: review: Lords of Madness
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2005, 12:53:22 AM »
I quite liked the Aboleth backstory. Made them scary in a way not covered by hitpoints and spells.

What review should do is let the reader know if he will like it. It's all well and good to say it's got feats - but do they work? Did you, as the reviewer, look at them and say, 'meh'. Does the new backstory interest you, bore you? How usable is the information?  These are all things that I am looking for from a review. When someone reviews something, especially someone I know well, I should be able to say, 'well he thought that so this means for me....'. If SE says it's got too much setting info, I ignore it because we have different standards. And he makes his standard clear during the review, letting me make that decision.

:)
If you're ever in an argument and Entropy winds up looking staid and temperate in comparison, it might be time to cut your losses and start a new thread about something else :)

Fellfrosch

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Re: review: Lords of Madness
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2005, 01:39:53 AM »
I'll keep that in mind.  I don't know what else to say about it review-wise though.  Between Frostburn and Lords of Madness, I'd rather have Frostburn.  The other thing is cause of all the Mythos-inspired stuff, its just goes so into sci-fi.  Mind flayers, especially as described in Lords of Madness, would be much more suited as villians in a modern-day horror campaign, like CoC or d20 modern, or even d20 future.
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Re: review: Lords of Madness
« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2005, 08:56:17 AM »
http://www.timewastersguide.com/view.php?id=800

That's where I laid out some of my expectations of a review, as an editor. I'm glad we have Ent aroudn to point out when our reviews don't make it. I often forget that when I'm reading, editing, and posting.