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Critical Hit: A Gaming Mystery
by James C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/08/2021 13:52:39
Another Akers Masterpiece.

I have loved the Deadball as well as the Strange Times shorts. Although I was already a fan, this book was a tremendous surprise. After recieving my digital copy from the Kickstarter campaign, I was initially resigned to waiting for the physical copies to get started. As I finished my current read, I began flipping through my digial shelf of shame and came across the file in my collection.

In what is perhaps the quickest read I have done, this book drew me in from the beginning and kept me engaged throughout. I am very glad I decided to jump on this title and will probably do another run through once I get the hard copy. If you are familiar with W.M. Akers, you will not be disappointed. If you are not familiar with Mr. Akers, then this would be a great place to start. In the realm of my short list of gaming related novels, this one stands at the top of the mountain.

Thank you sir and I look forward to any of your future works....



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Critical Hit: A Gaming Mystery
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Critical Hit: A Gaming Mystery
by John C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/07/2021 12:15:36

I've loved W.M. Akers's writing since his Deadball (game) books and his Westside series of novels. The writing style is vivid, laced with unexpected twists, and studded with humor. Critical Hit brings something new to the experience, it is inspired by the universe of Old School RPG's.

On my Kallax shelves, near my 1st Games Workshop edition of Talisman and the much-newer Gloomhaven I have a prized book on a display stand; it's my 1st Ed. AD&D Dungeon Master's Manual. I grew up playing early TSR Dungeons & Dragons and still occasionally find myself in a Pathfinder session with my daughter and her friends on Zoom. Video games? I have stacks of JRPGs. The dungeon crawl is a world I am familiar with. In Critiocal Hit Akers shows that it is his world as well. It's an adventurious "what if?" story of that world of graph paper and polyhedral dice and smudged character sheets coming real. Gamers, mystery buffs, fantasy/adventure fans have got themselves a real page turner here.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Lost Ship: A Survival Game
by Penncy P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/04/2021 16:14:40

I bought this game a LONG time ago during the kickstarter phase. I've printed out a few copies, and today I finally got to sit down and actually play a game. I will say that the first game you play, you should really play along with the instructions. Just as you read the instructions, play through the rounds with them. By the 3rd leap, all I needed was the quick reference guide, but that first leap I had to read the instructions quite a few times.

This is a great game if you feel like sitting down and spending some time with a fictional crew. It would be a great way - I imagine - to draft a module for any space opera RPG you might be GMing. Lots of replayability. First game I made it home in 3 leaps. Would have liked to experience more of the anomalies and just the game overall, so I'll definately be drafting up another ship soon and playing another game.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Lost Ship: A Survival Game
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Comrades: A Revolutionary RPG
by Cherch I. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/28/2021 06:23:28

Comrades is excellently written, and it is most probably the best RPG I've ever read. While the text is rather straight-to-the-point, it gives everything you need to play (from the tiny details of the game mechanics to broader aspects of role-playing). This was my entry point to the PbTa system, and I cannot feel more thankful to W.M. Akers for that. The game really "invites" you to embrace the philosophy of that system, and tells you why it is awesome to play.

A possible caveat is that, for some, the "wording" may be too narrow. I mean the fact that is written somehow based on historical (left-wing) revolutions. In my group, we have played in a "rebelion-revolution" context that did not have any left-wing implications, without altering the system at all. The game worked perfectly. I beleive one could have overcome that just by being more "general" in the text and the playbooks. But I believe it is a matter of taste. In any case, this should not be an excuse for not buying the game. Just do it, and play whatever you want to play. You will not regret.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Comrades: A Revolutionary RPG
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Deadball: 1909
by Joe C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/01/2021 17:31:08

Grew up playing strat (started playing in 1977) but have converted to Mr. Akers inspired game. More a baseball GAME than pure sim. You will cringe as a slick fielding shortstop robs your hitter of a game winning 2-run single. Cheer as your clutch hitter blisters a double in the gap. Deal with the frustration of your breaking-down stadium with its abnormally high mound. The game flows so easy and is easy to mod (i added a knuckleball trait and triple play chance). After a few tries the games will take 15-20min to play.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Deadball: 1909
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Deadball: Baseball With Dice
by John C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/01/2020 15:54:38

I had to chuckle at the last review because aside from Marshall Burke, a fellow I worked with while going to college, I have never heard anyone who had even heard of Syts-O-Matic Baseball (and they do still exist!). I sort of cut my teeth on Avalon Hill's Status Pro. I loved pitting ancient powerhouse teams against the teams I loved growing up.

This is a MUCH streamlined stats-based game (with plenty of interesting polyhedral die randomization which really feels like it reflects the swings of a team's season).

I'm new to Deadball, but I'm nearly through a fantastic set of series: '63 Dodgers V '81 Dodgers for the NL Time Travel Penant, '63 Yankees V '81 Yankees for AL Time Travel Pennant. Winners play in the Time Travel World Series. I absolutely love the tweaks you get from advanced rules, traits, etc., and it seems impossible that a dice chucker would make you feel and SEE the game unfolding in front of you, but that is exactly what happens.

This is not as math-heavy as many stats-based games, and that's good; it moves right along. At the same time it is grounded in the actual stats, so player strengths (and weaknesses) DO come to the surface.

I love Deadball. :)



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Deadball: Baseball With Dice
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Deadball Quick Start
by John C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/01/2020 15:42:23

The only probem with Quick Star is that you will want more. and More, and MORE! This is a fantastic game. :)



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Deadball Quick Start
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Comrades: A Revolutionary RPG
by Jim F. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/14/2020 19:46:29

Really fun game. We played a future USA where Barron Trump was President at 31 and they didn't even bother changing the Constitution. COVID-22 survivors were just grateful for their Amazon-Tube jobs.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Comrades: A Revolutionary RPG
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Deadball: Baseball With Dice
by john n. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/09/2020 10:10:36

Introduction I am coming at this review from a slightly different space than some of you that are reading this. I have played tabletop baseball since the age of 11, when I picked up my first set of Strat-O-Matic Baseball. Along the way, I have played APBA, Sherco, PTP/Dynasty League Baseball, Throwback Baseball 1.0 and countless others. I know there are far more games out there and there are many who have played more than I have, but I feel confident in saying that to me, games were a solo pursuit, a hobby shared by me and me only.

Late last year, I bought the computer version of Strat's baseball game and immersed myself in it. While quite good, it also got me in front of a computer screen for even more time each day. As I got older, it's funny how tired my eyes get now. I also was in a couple leagues and while they are great for some people, they weren't great for me, for a variety of reasons. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, I was at a place where I wanted to make some changes anyway, especially with my leisure time. I wanted a hobby, that well, was just a hobby again. It wasn't a side hustle, or ultra competitive, it was just fun.

Enter Deadball.

Playing The Game I first got Deadball a year or so ago, but didn't play due to other commitments. Since I was at a place where I was more open minded and willing to learn, I delved back into the basic rulebook. The game runs on a similar mechanic as other baseball games do - the interaction between pitcher and batter. The main difference to me is that the game does not have a 50-50 mechanic, where sometimes you roll on the pitcher's card and other times, the batters. Both pitcher and hitter are incorporated into each interaction, in a simple but sophisticated way.

Each batter's hit numbers are broken into the first two of his batting average. For example, a .300 hitter would be 30; Each pitcher has a die rating that is tied into their ERA rating. For a pitcher who's ERA is say 2.00-2.99, his die may be a D4. Yes, D4 - the game runs on standard RPG dice. So to resolve an at-bat, you would roll two 10-sided dice, and let's say you got 2-0, which is 20, and you would also roll the D4 for the pitcher. If you got a 2, that is a 22; the batter has a probable hit, so you would roll on the hit table. If you got over a 30, say a 44, that is an out. By taking the last number of the roll, 4, you would see that it is a groundout to the second baseman.

If you are familiar with scoring a baseball game, and the positions on the diamond (1-pitcher; 2-catcher, 3-First base), you can appreciate how genius that is. There are additional modifiers too, such as individual player traits - sluggers, slick fielders and pitchers, all have their place and will shine - strange events - I had a game recently that was impacted by vultures, which was a hoot; and the ability to rate any player and any team you want - ANY PLAYER. ANY TEAM - are strengths of this game that are too hard to ignore.

There are currently 4 books - the original, Deadball Year 2; Year 3 and a 1909 version, that all add to the baseball universe in their own way.

Conclusion For me, the biggest impact is how fun this game is. I find myself getting angry at the scorecard when my players don't do well, and I have never, ever, played a game that felt like baseball more than this one, and that is the biggest win. It is amazing solitaire fun. There always seems to be quite a debate from baseball gamers about which game is best. We are baseball fans after all. To me, they all have their place, and the most important thing is, if everyone is having fun, then the game is doing what it is supposed to do.

Overall, it's brilliance lies in its simplicity, much like the real game. You see the ball hit and caught, you will become emotionally invested and you will have fun. There is nothing dead about Deadball. It is amazingly vibrant in so many ways and well worth your time at the park in your mind, solo or with friends.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Deadball: Baseball With Dice
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Lost Ship: A Survival Game
by Stephen B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/16/2020 15:26:08

This is a neat solo dice roller to play a Battlestar-Galactica-em-up. Despite the quick reference though there's a couple of bits I found a little confusing but after a few round it settles into a pattern. Of death! And despair! And a new home, phew!



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Lost Ship: A Survival Game
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Deadball: Baseball With Dice
by Jack D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/10/2020 18:58:03

I've wanted to buy this game for years. As a treat to myself this Xmas -- couldn't quite afford that bottle of Lagavulin -- I finally picked up the book and PDF. This game, courtesy of the witty Mr. Akers, did not disappoint. This is a game for people who love baseball.

For my first outing, I generated the Victoria Victrolas, a power-hitting bunch of 20th century ballplayers if ever you saw any. I played my lovable AAAA team from my home town against the 1899 Cleveland Spiders and had a lovely afternoon out of the rain. I enjoyed the easy dice rolling and score keeping so much that I had to have someone join in the fun. I invited my beer-slinging ballpark employee pal over and we proceeded to see Josh Gibson, Cool Papa Bell, Star Trek's Buck Bokai, Catfish Hunter and Marco Estrada play baseball together before our eyes. My baseball fiend of a friend enjoyed himself so much we had to play another game right after the first one.

I run a weekly 5e game for friends, and I need some chances to get away from that large (sometimes anxiety-inducingly bloated) game, full of rules and dramatic license. Deadball is the perfect kind of vacation from those hours of hefty game prep. I guarantee that, as you contemplate your team's chances of avoiding the bottom of the division this upcoming baseball season, Deadball will keep your heart beating baseball and your stomach screaming for red hots and cold beer.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Deadball: Baseball With Dice
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Deadball: Year III
by Wes N. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/04/2019 19:57:51

Another great expansion to a great game. I love that I can make it complex or I can tone it down if I want something a bit lighter. Keep up the great work!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Deadball: Year III
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Deadball: Year III
by Jere D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/12/2019 12:21:45

Really enjoy this series... Quick easy and entertaining. We are planning a 10 team league for year 3. Should be fun !

jere dutt



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Deadball: Year III
by Adam C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/11/2019 17:08:10

Quick and easy to learn with as much (or little) depth as you want. Super easy to create a fictional league or recreate a MLB season. Highly recommend!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Deadball: Baseball With Dice
by Phillip G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/18/2019 01:09:06

I don't mean any hyperbole when I say this may be the most perfect baseball game ever made. It's certainly the best baseball game I've played (and that includes the excellent History Maker Baseball from PLAAY.com). It's not the most statistically in-depth or accurate (I'd say that title belongs to the Strat-O-Matic games), but it is the most accurate to the spirit of the game. This game feels like baseball, there's no other way to describe it. Every pitch, every hit, every out screams "baseball!" I can see Ian White hit back-to-back home runs, I can feel the excitement of the Chickadees as they chase their first-ever pennant.

Everything works together so seamlessly. Games are quick and easy to roll up without losing any of the fun of the real game. The games aren't bogged down by having to check player cards or a dozen charts, but they're not so simple that it doesn't feel like baseball. All of the different dice make me feel like I'm playing an RPG (which I know is what the creator was going for) and I really love that about this game!

Leagues and players are super quick and easy to create. I'd say that after you have everything memorized (which isn't hard), you can roll up an entire league with full rosters in about an hour! The last thing I want to mention is the worldbuilding. Wow, the worldbuilding! I'd kill to see a sourcebook full of nothing but the history of the Southern Circuit! That's how intrigued I am by just the little bit of backstory this game gives us. Every team is listed with its roster and a small bio talking about their prospects for the current year, and it's so well-thought out and interesting that I just want more! Kudos to WM Akers for creating what may be the most faithful tabletop simulation of baseball ever conceived.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Deadball: Baseball With Dice
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