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Minireview: Delta Green: Eyes Only

An alien conspiracy 160 million years in the making.

A group so powerful, their leader may be a god.

An accident so terrible it threatens the past, present and future.

To DELTA GREEN, it’s just another goddamn Night at the Opera.

Finally got around to reading this. Wow, once again; I have yet to be disappointed by any Delta Green book. This is extremely good stuff and quite creepy to boot.

Delta Green: Eyes Only collects three old and long (long!) out-of-print chapbooks for DG, and adds in three new scenarios (each one built around one of the chapbooks) and some extra articles. The first section/chapbook, “The Machinations of the Mi-Go”, concerns the Mi-Go (no surprise) and expands on their operations from what we’re told in the core book. While good, this section is maybe the weakest, simply because there isn’t all that much new here – lots of nice expansions on previous ideas, though. The second section, “The Fate”, deals with that organization (also initially introduced in the corebook), and here they are shown to be even scarier than initially depicted – which is understandable given the “default” answer presented here as to who/what Stephen Alzis actually is. Nice character detail on all the “Lords” is given, in addition to some supporting cast.

The last non-adventure section, “Project Rainbow”, is perhaps the best, and it’s completely original to this book – namely, the DG version of the Philadelphia Experiment. Very creepy and very cool.

Next up we have the scenarios. First is “A Night on Owlshead Mountain” which is a very nice scenario connected with the Mi-Go – but in a pleasantly subtle way. Probably the easiest scenario in this bunch to integrate with an existing campaign. Second up is “Artifact Zero”, which is a chilling and extremely deadly scenario built around the Project Rainbow stuff. Really good scenario, but also so ridiculously deadly that it makes Convergence from the core book look a bit tame. Run this for established play groups only if you’re prepared to lose a lot of PCs. I’d personally run this as a one-shot, and continue on with survivors (if any). You need a ridiculous level of paranoia to survive this thing. Not a bad thing, but… well, you have been warned. This one is nasty and unfair.

Last up is “Holy War”, which concerns internal Fate politics and the fallout of that into the hands of DG and other groups, set in New York just after 9/11. Reads like a nice adventure, but probably best suited for more experienced agents.

All in all, I was extremely impressed with this book, it continues the very high level of quality that Delta Green books are known for. If you want some nasty nihilism into your modern-day occult/supernatural games, you can’t really go wrong with Delta Green material.

As an aside, Scott Glancy just announced on the DG mailing list that a softcover reprint of “Eyes Only” is going to the printers today – so expect to see that available from some places in the near future. Good news for those who missed the original 1000-copy print run, which sold out fast.

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Deluge of books, and good riddance to trash

Lock and load agents, Delta Green: Eyes Only became available last night. As noted before, this is a limited run of 1,000 copies. I ordered about an hour after the announcement was posted and my order number was 101. Dennis said that it’s “selling like hotcakes”, despite the hefty shipping & handling costs – $30 s&h to Finland, which results in a total price of $70 for the book. Ouch. Becomes a bit less “ouch” once you realize that because of the strong Euro vs. weak, puny and generally inferior US$ that “only” amounts to about 52 euros. Expensive, but doable. Getting hold of this book once the 1,000 copies sell out will involve eBay, luck and lots of cash; I’ll happily pay 52e now.

In what is obviously a global conspiracy to hike up my credit card bill, Greg Stolze’s Reign also became available this week through Lulu print-on-demand, with two different options for cover art (I like the red Solis design best, myself). Also available as hardcover, and to top it off I understand that Lulu offers semi-reasonable shipping costs for us EU folks nowadays. Heroically, I resisted the temptation, I don’t want to cram anything more on my Visa this month.

For those of you going “what the hell is ‘Reign’?”, it’s Stolze’s new rpg using the ORE/Nemesis engine and focusing on politics and social dynamics in a fantasy setting – in other words, it has crunch that will let the players (try to) take over and run kingdoms. Could be very cool.

For those of you going “who the hell is Greg Stolze?”… you’re reading the wrong blog entry, sorry. Move on now, don’t block the view.

In probably-not-related news, Jerry Falwell is (finally) dead. The world just became a slightly better place, and the warm and sunny weather today just might be a side result. You never know.

Added later: Lulu.com has a promotion with really cheap EU shipping, but in order to get that you have to pay in euros, if you pay in dollars you get charged the normal price. For Reign, “cheap” here means 1,99e and “normal” $13.62. Don’t ask how I found that out. Just… don’t.

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