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The Red Room

The Red Room

Wretched Role-Playing Games

Vendor Review

  1. 5 out of 5

    It is difficult in the current year to address complicated subjects, but Sexual Holocaust does it with style and an unrelenting focus on fidelity to its subject. The Hellbound Heart and the Hellraiser series of films are not for the faint of heart nor is Sexual Holocaust. Yet, it does this not by a focus on grand guinol or lurid content, but by emphasizing a crime noir thriller where the threat is supernatural rather than mundane threats. When true evil rears its ugly head it is sadly not the best of us but the most wretched who will be on the front line of saving the world.

  2. 4 out of 5

    The plots and the characters are believable enough to have news articles written of them. If you have players that are inspired or love shows like the Cabinet of Curiosity or Love Death Robots; Silvia’s ‘The Bastard King’ will certainly be a treat for them. While the source book is The Red Room’s ‘Wretched Èpoque’, any one who is familiar with the Call of Cthulhu d20 SRD book can pick this scenario up and soar with it. Although, if the GM is not even slightly brushed up on the history of France in the 1800’s, picking up Wretched Epoque should be highly considered. Of course, practicing your French accent could be a nice boon. The Bastard King could easily be run in a single four hour session with some motivated players. I would suggest a party of three, perhaps four. However, the game could really shine if you’re running it for a spouse or a best friend. The inherent deviousness of the Wretched-Verse works well for individuals whom don’t mind getting their hands dirty. GM beware, reading through the adventure is a must. The scenario is not written as a series of events per se or a proper sequence. It would be easy to accidentally reveal some of the larger plot points by accidentally reading to far into character bios when characters are meeting them. Perhaps the layout of the books could be a little more user friendly, so a GM that has already cut their teeth on horror and intrigue games should run this one. Also, I would recommend that the characters that will be subjected to the Bastard King’s contents be One-Shot ready, the heavy Lovecraftian trappings rarely leave player’s characters ready for another adventure. The one thing severely lacking this scenario are well written pre-generated characters that I fell in love with from Silvia Clemente’s other fantastic work ‘(In)Sanatorium. All in all, I would recommend the Bastard King.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Most of my active interest in TTRPG these days is on the educational angle for juvenile participants. This product is on the opposite corner of the universe from that. This OSR system core is the sordid pulp fiction book cover that skillfully persuades you to pick it up in public and peruse it in broad daylight, hinting at some literary nuance while wordlessly promising satisfying proportions of gutter smut. You'll feel the inspirational wind at your back ready to sign on for the more-pondered-than-explored "evil-character-party adventure, down to XP mechanics for what sort of viciousness will score you the bonus XP. Like a book cover should, this $4.50 short-and-sweet (60p) entices you into the authors' adventure series enabling our Jungian shadows a little oxygen. But more than just a commercial poster, it's a work of art worth its own cost: Marvel at the offense of puritanical sensibilities classical and contemporary: perverted religious theology as well as shameless bioessential differential in demi-humans & bluntly explicating the most visceral and unwoke origin of half-orcs. I prefer those magic systems incurring risks for using magic, but this was the first time I felt myself looking forward to rolling badly just for the sake of contributing to a grisly story. The spell list for such a costly and risky artistry is punishingly small compared to the libraries of your childhood D&D. Get your OSR grognard on with morale and henchman tables, and still enjoy fresh new facets of the old TSR mythos, (e.g. "Cockatrice: According to orcs, it tastes like chicken.") While the authors feign disuse of alignment, make no mistake: this game system is devoted to the exploration of D&D's most pernicious knot--the articulation of good and evil is pushed front and center into the narrative by system design, albeit through the sewers rather than main street. Your depraved PC is almost sure to die after all. That's all the solace pearl clutchers and snowflakes are afforded here...