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Pen & Paper Roleplaying Central => Reviews => Topic started by: Ted on August 08, 2021, 02:48:20 PM

Title: The Vast in the Dark
Post by: Ted on August 08, 2021, 02:48:20 PM
Vast in the Dark, by C. Ferguson Avery and published by Feral Indie Studio

System: Agnostic, though recommends compatible systems (primarily OSR)
Length: Twenty-five (25) pages
Link: https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/363439/The-Vast-in-the-Dark (https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/363439/The-Vast-in-the-Dark)

The “Good” (Likes)
It is helpful when any work, but especially one so tightly written, contains a clear mission statement.  There is no fluff or meaningless setting detail in this work.  The author provides useful material on every page of the ‘zine.  For example, it contains a plethora of  useful tables, including but not limited to: traveller quirks, settlements, rooms, treasures, encounters, travel, wasteland effects and last, but certainly not least, inventory.  In particular, inventory provides an interesting twist on placement and encumbrance, a satisfying “mini-game” on resource management and where to stow the gear.  Another noteworthy feature is the exploration time mechanic; it is both easy to administer and constructs a strong atmosphere.  Many systems would benefit from this approach.

The page design flows well, both within a page and from page to page. The font, typeface and size make the content easy to read and then locate later when retrieving a piece of information.

The “Bad” (Dislikes)
Somewhat discordant, inconsistent art style between the landscapes and the figures.  That written, both are very strong, but together they do not mesh.  However, style is a matter of taste.

The “Ugly” (Conclusion):
This ‘zine is exceedingly useful for putting an interesting twist into an existing game or additional operative flavor into a new game.  The design and content work harmoniously together, forming a compact and concise work that contains so much useful content that it belies its modest 25 pages.  Even though sparse, it does impart some setting/world detail that strikes the right balance.

Rating: 5/5