My order for the New Big Dragon Classic Edition GM Screen Kickstarter came in the mail today. It is quite the hefty package. I’d guess it weight about as much as my AD&D Player’s Handbook. The tables are geared towards 0D&D/Holmes/BX/Labrynth Lord/Swords & Wizardry/Delving Deeper and other similar clones.
The estimated delivery date is June, 2016, and I got mine on May 23, 2016. This is how you do a Kickstarter!
It was well wrapped in a plastic envelope and cardboard shipping box. The contents of the box were tightly shrink wrapped together.
As with all the other things Richard LeBlanc has done, the text is clear and easily readable. Thanks to public domain art, it has some very cool illustrations.
There is a nice thank you page on the same heavy card stock as other items, signed by Richard and his colleague, David Wellborn.
Similarly, there is the obligatory page for the OGL (Open Gaming License).
Next are two booklets. One for a collection of cleric spells, up to 5th level, and the other magic-user and elf spells up to 6th level. The booklets were shipped flat for better condition on arrival. This requires the user to fold them. I need to by a bone folder, as I have gotten several items like this, and manage to never fold them straight.
There are character sheets, one generic, and one for each class: Cleric, Elf, Dwarf, Fighter, Halfling, Magic-User, and Thief. These are heavy card stock, and very nice. I hate to write on them. I’m considering having them laminated so I can re-use them….
There is also a spell record sheet and a character log sheet for the GM to keep track of a party. These sheets are also of durable card stock.
There is a Game Master’s Table Reference Document with all of the tables on the GM screen.
Finally, there is the two part GM screen. Only one section of the screen has player facing tables for experience points for each class, and ability bonuses and penalties.
One screen has the combat sequence, game turn and game day sequence, the saving throws for each class, attack tables, missile ranges, AC by armor type, variable weapon damage, monster reactions and XP, clerics turning, and thief abilities. One handy table is the special abilities by class. It shows the armor, weapons, and shields allowed by each class, if there is infravision, and other notes. The cleric turning table is repeated on the cleric spell sheet.
The other screen has retainers and hirelings with details on recruiting retainers (henchmen), cost for mercenaries and specialists. The movement and encumbrance section has indoor and outdoor movement and pursuit rules. Finally, there is cost of weapons and equipment, and treasure tables. To me, it makes sense to have weapons and equipment on the player side of the screen, but this is something the GM also often needs.
I can’t think of anything that I am always wanting at my finger tips at the table. All RPG designers should keep in mind the most used tables in their game and have a section or appendix with all the most used tables.
The flip side of the character sheets are blank. The only thing I would think to add to them would be the equipment and encumbrance lists. I think that is a minor point.
This offering is high quality. In some ways, it is almost too pretty to use. However, I will endeavor to get over that concern and use it when I run 0D&D or one of its clones.
This Kickstarter includes PDFs of all the items. Once the Kickstarter is shipped, I am sure it will be available on RPGNow, if you are interested.
You can follow Richard’s Blog, Save Vs. Dragon here.