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Stars Without Number on Bundle of Holding

KingJosh

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Stars Without Number Revised (http://bundleofholding.com/presents/MoreStars) and Classic (http://bundleofholding.com/presents/SWN2019) are both on Bundle of Holding!

I’m tempted to get the Revised bundle, at least the Starter Collection. At $9, it’s half the price of the Deluxe PDF, and you get a couple of supplements to boot!

But, uh, I know almost nothing about the supplements. Are they any good? Are the four titles in the Bonus Collection worth nearly double the price ($16, at the time of this writing?)
 

SorcererNinja

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My main question is are there any major compatibility issues between the revised and first editions? Are the supplements from the first edition really easy to use with revised or will they need some work?
 

The Wyzard

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If you have the second/revised edition, you don't need Skyward Steel, I would say. The starship combat in Revised is basically an iteration later on the revised combat in SS, and supersedes it. Revised is somewhat higher-powered than 1E; I think it's also somewhat more complicated. In that sense you may actually prefer it, I think a lot of players prefer a PC who is less disposable than what 1E gives you.

Suns of Gold is extremely good. It would take a lot of thought for me to decide how compatible it is with Revised, but my inclination is to say that it's worth the purchase anyway. I consider it to be effectively indispensable for running 1E; I referenced it more than anything except the main rulebook.

Starvation Cheap is great if you want to run a merc campaign, not very useful otherwise.

I really liked Hard Light, but it's 5 bucks by itself. You may be able to get that and Suns of Gold by themselves for cheaper than buying the expanded 1E package. I'm not sure. Polychrome isn't trash or anything, and Engines of Babylon would be good stuff for groups where the PCs have enough money to customize vehicles.

I suggest buying both expanded packages if you actually intend to run SWN. But then, I have every single one of those PDFs and have ran enough SWN over the years to have used all of them. I may be overestimating their value to someone who is getting them all at once and isn't sure how much use they'll get out of them.
 

The Wyzard

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My main question is are there any major compatibility issues between the revised and first editions? Are the supplements from the first edition really easy to use with revised or will they need some work?
There are very significant differences in how starship combat works and how characters are made, and characters in 2E are more powerful. IMO, mind you.

Most of the books should be pretty cross-compatible, though.
 

Tricksy and False

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For the More Stars Without Number Bundle, I like Starvation Cheap, Polychrome, and Dead Names, but each is pretty specific to its respective genre.

Starvation Cheap is a toolkit to expand SWN for armed forces campaigns (though not for stellar naval campaigns, that's Skyward Steel). I would get it if you want advice for a military-focused or mercenary campaign or mass combat rules for SWN (does Revised have mass combat rules? I don't recall).

Polychrome is both a setting for SWN and a toolkit for adding transhuman elements to your campaign.

Dead Names is advice for creating the remains of precursor alien civilizations to discover and explore.

Sixteen Stars is a bunch of generators for creating encounter sites quickly. I find all of Sine Nomine's Sixteen X materials very handy.

Of the four supplements, I think Sixteen Stars is worth the full price (7 USD), so that means getting all four for about that price is a bargain if you think you might use even one of the other three.

Most of the material is advice and tables. Starvation Cheap and Polychrome do both have equipment lists that might not be Revised-compatible, but the good stuff is the rest of the books, not the equipment lists.
 

CardinalXimenes

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My main question is are there any major compatibility issues between the revised and first editions? Are the supplements from the first edition really easy to use with revised or will they need some work?
There are no major compatibility issues, no- at most, you flip AC from descending to ascending and use SWN:Revised skill names for checks instead of the original skills. A few mechanical systems were outmoded by SWN:R, like Skyward Steel's optional ship combat system, but that book has a bunch of system-neutral GM helps for running space navy campaigns.

When I wrote revised, I was _very careful_ not to shoot my back catalog in the head. Backward compatibility was a primary goal of the revision, since it would be an act of sublime folly for me to toast seven years of work for the sake of a new edition.
 

Ashigaru

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Would Stars Without Number lend itself well to a planetary romance game, in the vein of John Carter, Buck Rogers, and Flash Gordon? Or is it more suited to gritty or “down to earth” SF?
 

mitchw

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Yes. Mainly you would use heroic characters instead of regular characters. There are rules for both.
These are not separate rules, just more choices, earlier for the heroic types.
 

Ramidel

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Also, for planetary romances confined to a single planet, take a look at Other Dust. While I'm not sure how well it works with the heroic rules (it should work, but a heroic character directly skips the gritty survival challenge that OD sets at lower levels) but it has much better rules for single-planet faction and hex design in a ruined world.
 

FoolishOwl

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I don't see it in the bundle, but a good one to consider if you're spending a lot of time dirtside is Engines of Babylon, which has expanded rules for vehicle design. The base stats for unmodified vehicles in Engines of Babylon are identical to the stats for vehicles in SWN: Revised, so it doesn't look like it will require any conversion.
 
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