So from what I understand, I need to buy a few sourcebooks before i can use this book. Can anyone please tell me what books are needed before I buy this one?
You don't need any sourcebooks to use Hooks. The scenarios are all self-contained, but each ties into a sourcebook.
The idea is that if your troupe likes a Hook scenario, then you can go buy the corresponding sourcebook. It is OK if you do happen to have the corresponding sourcebook already, of course.
The whole concept of 'Hooks' was to give the reader a taste of the content in other Ars Magica supplements without requiring them to purchase said supplements. I haven't received my own copies of the book yet so I can't say with any certainty how well it fares at actually fulfilling its lofty task, but you certainly shouldn't need any other books to make use of 'Hooks'.
Ah, thank you!
What a wonderful idea to give players a sneak peak of other books. This is a book I wil lmost definatly buy as soon as it comes to my local store
I've received mine, and I agree: you don't need the other books to use Hooks, but it very well might want to make you buy them.
As Andrew Gronosky said, none of the books which individual chapters in 'Hooks" introduces are required. Which is the point. Although many of them undoubtedly cast further light on the subjects of the stories and as such can be helpful if they are at hand.
So, if you own one of the books and think: "How the deuce am I going to ever use this" Hooks should lend a helping hand here.
If you are thinking about getting one of the books, Hooks offers a little teaser about what the book contains and how it can be used.
On the Atlas Games website the entry for Hooks has a link to a pdf with an intro mentioning which chapters hook to which books:
Hope you find Hooks useful
Got mine today at Orc's Nest - looks useful, particularly the story about merchants.
I'm sure the relevant author will be pleased about that
I picked up mine this afternoon and I've looked through the short but nice chapter on Sir Erwan and I'm part of the way through Small Game which looks like a blast so far.
Looking forward to hear your impressions on the book
Got my copy today and I've read through a couple of scenarios already and skimmed through most of the others. I was surprised to be reminded that we did playtest this book way back during the final days of our old troupe. The great thing is I can barely remember it so I get to enjoy it all over again.
I won't call any out or mention details for fear of starting a discussion that gives the game away, but I've found (I think) three that I can maybe use pretty directly. For the others, I can enjoy those and keep them in my back pocket.
In short, I love the book concept and I think it's been executed really, really well. Well done, guys.
Erik, if you post a review of this book, would be you be so kind as to copy-and-paste it over on its Redcap page? That would make it available to people who don't frequent this forum.
Alternatively, a link from the from the Wiki page to your forum post would be almost as useful.
Other users are invited to do so as well.
No reviews or impressions yet?
Here are a few impressions chapter by chapter
Birth Right: The Faeries in here are horrifically villainous. In my games I've never noticed a great resistance to resort to violence on the part of players. Although the adventure does discuss many different ways for the story to play out, if your players are anything like mine the story is very likely to end with a smoking crater where the faerie forest used to be, with faerie heads on pikes to serve as a warning to any other supernatural creature who might choose to be so vile. It seems a story that could be slotted in to almost any game, very useful and having a clear villain can be really fun.
Echos of the ancient dead: Our antagonist in this story is working with plots inside plots and I'm not sure what the motivation for all of the deviousness is. This might need a bit of work retooling to fit into a game
Into the Valley and The River, both chapters contain a political story that has an NPC magus doing some arguably awful things. If I were going to use these in a game I'd want to make certain that I also had magi in my setting who were being very considerate of mundanes and going out of their way to help others. I'd want to keep the setting away from an "all magi are assholes" theme. I'll admit that there are very viable and interesting stories that come from the corrupting influence of power but my tastes more frequently are pulled to other themes. The stories are not for me I like my antagonists more sympathetic if I'm going to spend the game arguing with them.
New Deal: I think this story is fantastic. all of the NPCs feel like they have believable motivations. It seems difficult to imagine a way for this story to go terribly wrong (OK I've imagined the PC's murdering their way through it and then having to suffer the results of their actions, so perhaps not difficult to imagine after all) but it seems likely to go well in play.
Salvation: I liked this one quite a bit. There is a demon who is working to damn souls. Its a story about dealing with the demon and its previous victims. A human level story but there is a chance to open up with some magical fire power as well.
Small game looks like a blast to play. You could work up a bit of a spy thriller secret agent story with this if it goes on for a while with the covenant and the antagonists making moves and counter moves with everyone questioning the motives of those around them. On first read through it is my favorite in the book.
To the Dark Tower: Is an excellent set up to have the characters argue amongst themselves. This sort of a scenario has in the past made for some of the most enjoyable gaming experiences I've ever had. The brevity of the chapter does leave an open question regarding the source of the antagonist's vision which I feel that every group will need to answer before playing the game so it isn't really ready to play as it is. But I imagine that this question would likely need to be answered differently for every saga anyway so its absence is no loss.
On a related note, does anyone know if this book's even in shops yet? I'm not sure, but I believe most of the people who mentioned having copies (on this forum, at least) are play-testers...
Considering myself, I bought my copy at my retailer in Paris (France) on Monday 24th March…
(I'm not kidding: the first six words on page 8 are "A naked and screaming baby boy")
Apparently it is in Gigamesh, the largest hobby store in Barcelona, so I guess that the answer would be yes. I am still waiting for my copies
Fantastic review Erik. Much appreciated
I'm not. (not for this book anyway).
My local store shares warehouse space with Atlas so they are a bit wierd but they normally don't get their copies in until tlas is done shipping books to everyone else. I purchased mine on March 18, over two weeks ago.
It's registered as 'in stock' at iguk
Got mine through Amazon last Tuesday (3/25), and Amazon usually takes a week or so after it's "out" to ship it.