Donnerstag, 21. Juni 2012

"CONTACT - Das Taktische UFO-Rollenspiel" Review

About a week ago I stumbled across something that piqued my interest like nothing else has for a few years now. Browsing for d20 modern campaigns I by chance found the pretty much fresh of the press CONTACT role playing game. It was advertised, as the german title suggests, as a tactical UFO role playing game. And as a long time fan of games like UFO: enemy Unknown and X-COM: Terror from the Deep I was almost immediatly hooked.

Contact Cover

The only thing that kept me from buying the game immediately was the rather steep price. A price tag of about €50 is quite something, even among other rather expensive German role playing games. Still, I decided to indulge myself and to go ahead and commit the sin of wanton spending. Now, not quite a week later, I'm the proud owner of the book shown in the picture above. And it is just about everything I expected and then some more.

I haven't read it throughout yet. That will still take me a day or two. But even after just giving all its major sections a brief glance I couldn't suppress the urge to recommend the game to others, and maybe write a little review.

The Rules: like advertised the game uses a percentile system. Thus I take the liberty to call it a d100 system. Character Creation is done with a point buy mechanic. Characters could be roughly described as the combination of abilities, traits (advantages, disadvantages and neutral traits) and skills. I must admit, that I am rather fond of percentile RPG systems in general, but here my first impression went even way beyond that. This system is in my opinion as close to perfect as it can be.  

Addendum - Character advancement: I still have to mention this, which is mostly done by a leraning by doing approach that gets progressivly harder the better you are at something. Just rememebr dear game masters, if your players decide to level by frog jumping everywhere (or something similar) whack them with a big stick.

Combat: You could argue that combat is obviously part of the rules in general, but I felt it necessary to mention it on its own. Combat in CONTACT is Action Point based. Every character has a number of action points available on each "turn" of combat and all actions cost a certain amount of APs. APs determine how much you can do, and when you can do it. I probably should not go into much more detail here. Anyway, the system as described in the book should guarantee both smooth and action loaded combat sequences. And anyone familiar with the old UFO games should feel some nostalgia.

The Setting: As could be expected the game is firmly set into a slightly dark future version of our earth. The setting as described reminded me of my old Shadowrun experiences as well as, again, the old UFO games.

The Book: Weighing in at 320 pages the hard cover is in my opinion best described as a high quality product. From front to back it is illustrated in full color and all the illustrations match in style and are appropriate for the setting. In addition the book comes with an attached bookmark.

Everything considered, I must say I am very impressed with this product. And I think it is well worth its price. An additional plus is, that the official page has bonus material for download, including character calculators. The one big wish of mine left unfulfilled up to now would be a release in other languages, especially in English. 

As always, feel free to leave a comment or correct me if I got anything wrong.

Kommentare:

  1. Is there a PDF version? Are they going to release the English version?

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    1. As far as I know an english version is currently being worked at. You might want to keep an eye on this: http://community.uhrwerk-verlag.de/index.php?topic=564.0 or the general news page for Contact: http://www.contactrpg.com/ (german only for now although that will probably change once the english version is finished).

      I'm not sure if there is a PDF version. I got my books as print versions so far though.

      Don't hesitate to post your (english) question at the official board (see link above). I'm confident, that publisher or author will be happy to provide official answers to your questions.

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