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kumada1

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A member registered Dec 04, 2019 · View creator page →

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All good! Thank you for writing Clown Motel!

Clown Motel is an experience. It feels a little disorganized, and it's not 100% clear to me how every part of it works, but it's also bristling with energy and creativity. Also you play as what I'm assuming are spec ops clowns. We need more games like that.

Clown Motel's PDF is actually a collection of PDFs, and they're all mandatory. Not everything is labeled clearly, so: Clown Core is the core system. Clown Motel is the character sheet. Clown Weapon Sheet 1 and 2 are equipment. And Creature Sheet (Clown Motel) is the bestiary.

Visuals-wise, most of the PDFs that make up Clown Motel are a little sparse. There's some photo art, and the bestiary, equipment lists, and character sheet are well organized, but there's a lot of bare text.

Setting-wise, Clown Motel feels like there's a little information missing. You play as a clown, you have weapons and can tame creatures, and the character sheet references unnatural entities, goop, and fear level, but I'm not 100% sure how these all tie together.

On the other hand, the weapons and creatures are great. There's a really solid sense of comedy in the names and descriptions, such as the BHG (big honkin' gun) and there's a ton of creativity threaded throughout the design. For example, the weapon called Name allows you to rename and transform enemies. Also you can get bonus stats from the GM by drawing your character. And you can also build your own weapon out of custom clown parts, using a system that's flexible and rewards player innovation.

The creature sheet doesn't really have any foes on it (although maybe you could fight a raccoon), but all of the creatures are fun and compelling and have the game's signature humor.

Overall, if you want a game with a solid theme, lots of chaos, and just enough mechanics to get rolling, give this a try. It's a fun read and---with a few judgement calls on how its game world works---I think it'd make a neat (and extremely hectic) oneshot.


Minor Issues:

-There's a few spelling errors, but they don't interfere with readability, and honestly they're kind of part of the aesthetic?

-Clown Motel's name is super hard to search on itchio. It just doesn't show up in the results. I think this is because there are so many other clown games and motel games, and because itch's search doesn't prioritize whole phrases.

Thanks!

Thanks! It was a lot of fun to playtest.

These generators are the best.

Stellar, high quality, really quite specific art.

The wreaths for this one all look lovely.

Thanks!

Heck yeah! I'm happy to have provided a fun minigame!

I don't have great estimates for these, because the flow of the game is a little loose, but 2--7 people and 30 minutes--7 hours is the broadest ballpark I can give.

2--4 hours might be more common, but game speed really depends on how much people lean into the atmosphere and how much they work towards crisis.

If you're not sure if Iron Bough might be for you, please feel free to grab a community copy and flip through.

Thank you!

It's fixed!

Dang. Good catch. I poured over that map for so long and I thought I had everything down.

Edges are listed as a hills area, like Galgbacken and the Isles, but they're not mentioned in the Hills listing, so I assumed the Hills descriptor was topographical and that they were part of the Beyond Cy listing.

I'll patch it within the hour.

Oh, I completely misunderstood the talk and pet mechanic, then. It's basically support conversations from the modern games, not the "these two characters need to talk during this map" thing that Thracia was doing. There's no bug here, I was just confused on how it worked.

Likewise, I'd misunderstood how death works, and assumed losing a character was permanent. 

This actually...maybe makes the game a lot easier. I'll keep playing and see if being able to safely lose team members takes some pressure off of missions.

It was very effective horror! It had exactly the feeling that I would expect to get from a government taskforce clinically documenting its atrocities, and the pacing and choice of language was extremely strong. I don't think that kind of horror is a bad thing any more than I think a ghost chili pepper is a bad thing---I just don't want someone to eat one unprepared.

As for ketamine, it makes perfect sense apart from being achronological. Shifting the timeline up to the 60s feels like it would resolve the issue---and honestly the taskforce did have a sort of 60s black book project feeling to it. Not really relentlessly purpose-driven and needs must in its inhumanity, more just messing around and finding out for nominal freedom reasons.

Hitobito no Hikari is a loose storytelling TTRPG modeled after PS2 survival horror classics like Haunting Ground and Clocktower.

The PDF is 2 pages, presented in trifold, and has a pleasant, well-organized, and maybe lightly occult aesthetic. It's easy to read and visually interesting.

Contents-wise, the PCs play as girls who are exploring an isolated gothic environment looking for their classmate. The GM plays dangers in the environment---and several roaming Stalkers---who seek to hinder them.

Mechanically, Hikari isn't interested in crunch. However, it still has a complex and satisfying resolution system. When something threatens a character, they can either spend an item to resolve the danger immediately, or roll with a 50% chance of avoiding consequences. Consequences can include slowly taking mental damage, getting captured, losing items, or marking progress towards the end of the game.

Hikari tracks the flow of gameplay with a Fate clock. When the clock fills, the scenario ends and the game resolves based on how much progress the PCs were able to make.

Overall, Hikari feels like a little bit of a stone soup. If your players love the premise, engage actively with the genre, and lean into the atmosphere, it'll be great.

I would absolutely recommend this to anyone who loved Clocktower and Haunting Ground, or who likes the giallo and gothic genres and wants a TTRPG that's easy to pick up and run, short on prep, but heavy on atmosphere.


Minor Issues:

-Every time I write one of these sections, I'm like "truly, this is my most insignificant quibble," but I've sunk to new lows here: I'm not sure the title feels compelling. Demento and Clocktower leaned into their giallo themes with their titles, and English language titles are in general pretty abundant across PS2 survival horror: Biohazard, Demento, Silent Hill, Siren, etc. Weirdly, Hitobito no Hikari feels less like one of those games through its use of a Japanese title, but doesn't feel like it vibes with the VN horror movement either (Higurashi, etc.) Hitobito no Hikari as a title also kinda feels plain in terms of what it's saying---just Hikari by itself might be stronger. However, again, this is an extremely minor quibble. And also, crucially, I'm real bad at Japanese. Someone who's more comfortable with the language might be able to give better feedback on the title.

-The clock of fate sections are different from the Fate you accumulate, right? I couldn't confirm this, and the similarity of the words feels a little bit confusing.

-Strength feels the most clearly mechanical of the skills. The others are definitely useful if the GM leans into making them work, but Psychic Power seems to just be a better version of Sharpness.

The Claudia Contingency is an extremely beefy, feature length mini-campaign for FIST that dives into the neat subgenre of Peter Pan horror. It is *not* a lighthearted module, and it gets very intense at points, but it is very well-written and designed.

The PDF is 23 pages, with a clean but dense layout and a lot of helpful diagrams and maps.

Contents-wise, Claudia Contingency has a great structure and sense of pacing. It has a clear, urgent hook. Multiple avenues for investigation. And a growing sense of certainty and dread that culminates in a hellscape.

There are a few subsystems for this campaign, including a CYCLOPS tension tracker that results in hostile interference if the players act too overtly. There's also a somewhat odd 'spirit animal' system for NPCs, where they succeed or fail checks based on whether that makes sense for the animal---I'm not 100% this system is more efficient that just mentioning an NPC's profession, or that it wouldn't benefit from a different name, but it is an interesting experiment.

The campaign's framework is well-organized and ultimately reacts to the actions of the players. They might go to one location, kill the big bad, and wrap up in a one session speedrun. Or they might chase down dozens of leads and then set off a nuke in a hostile dreamrealm. There's a wide range of possibilities that the module accomodates.

The writing throughout is direct, informational, and technical. It's easy to read, and does an excellent job of conveying exactly what the GM needs to know.

The threats and challenges facing the PCs are complex, with lots of ways to solve them. The foes in Claudia Contingency also have a lot of variation to them. It's not d6 zombies in a hallway. Everything feels like a unique tactical encounter.

Overall, this is a solid, atmospheric, and at times quite eerie mini campaign. It fits FIST's style very nicely, but could also be adapted for a high lethality Delta Green, Call Of Cthulhu, or NWoD mortals game.

That said, I would *not* read this if exhaustive clinical descriptions of routine abuse might in any way bother you. I said it at the start, but I'll say it again. This gets very, incisively, dark. If you've got the tolerance level for Delta Green scenarios or you normally play that type of material, you will likely be fine.

Minor Issues:

-The CW maybe undersells how intense this supplement gets with intimate partner violence, medical horror, gender horror, and state-sanctioned abuse. I'm pretty deadened to descriptions of human cruelty, but the writing here is quite strong and it got all the way under my skin.

-Ketamine was first synthesized in 1962. I'm not 100% sure that syncs up with the time period during which the NATIONAL SUBMARINE DEFENSE TASK FORCE was operational.

-Page 14, "at dusk cricket overlap" crickets

-There's a few discordant elements in the scenario and places where the tone changes a little jarringly. "Woo woo knowledge", the PSI crystals, the crocodile, the goats. The goats are neat, and feel strange and menacing, and the writing on the crocodile is really strong. The Netherland being the way it is could be accounted for by Heaton having read Peter Pan to NICO, but some Netherland elements (the PSI crystals, the lobster) really feel like they're a different genre from the stuff the submarine base set up for. If the crystals were some other sort of object, something more intrinsically connected with who NICO is and how NICO sees the world, I don't think there'd be this dissonance.

The Claudia Contingency is an extremely beefy, feature length mini-campaign for FIST that dives into the neat subgenre of Peter Pan horror. It is *not* a lighthearted module, and it gets very intense at points, but it is very well-written and designed.

The PDF is 23 pages, with a clean but dense layout and a lot of helpful diagrams and maps.

Contents-wise, Claudia Contingency has a great structure and sense of pacing. It has a clear, urgent hook. Multiple avenues for investigation. And a growing sense of certainty and dread that culminates in a hellscape.

There are a few subsystems for this campaign, including a CYCLOPS tension tracker that results in hostile interference if the players act too overtly. There's also a somewhat odd 'spirit animal' system for NPCs, where they succeed or fail checks based on whether that makes sense for the animal---I'm not 100% this system is more efficient that just mentioning an NPC's profession, or that it wouldn't benefit from a different name, but it is an interesting experiment.

The campaign's framework is well-organized and ultimately reacts to the actions of the players. They might go to one location, kill the big bad, and wrap up in a one session speedrun. Or they might chase down dozens of leads and then set off a nuke in a hostile dreamrealm. There's a wide range of possibilities that the module accomodates.

The writing throughout is direct, informational, and technical. It's easy to read, and does an excellent job of conveying exactly what the GM needs to know.

The threats and challenges facing the PCs are complex, with lots of ways to solve them. The foes in Claudia Contingency also have a lot of variation to them. It's not d6 zombies in a hallway. Everything feels like a unique tactical encounter.

Overall, this is a solid, atmospheric, and at times quite eerie mini campaign. It fits FIST's style very nicely, but could also be adapted for a high lethality Delta Green, Call Of Cthulhu, or NWoD mortals game.

That said, I would *not* read this if exhaustive clinical descriptions of routine abuse might in any way bother you. I said it at the start, but I'll say it again. This gets very, incisively, dark. If you've got the tolerance level for Delta Green scenarios or you normally play that type of material, you will likely be fine.


Minor Issues:

-The CW maybe undersells how intense this supplement gets with intimate partner violence, medical horror, gender horror, and state-sanctioned abuse. I'm pretty deadened to descriptions of human cruelty, but the writing here is quite strong and it got all the way under my skin.

-Ketamine was first synthesized in 1962. I'm not 100% sure that syncs up with the time period during which the NATIONAL SUBMARINE DEFENSE TASK FORCE was operational.

-Page 14, "at dusk cricket overlap" crickets

-There's a few discordant elements in the scenario and places where the tone changes a little jarringly. "Woo woo knowledge", the PSI crystals, the crocodile, the goats. The goats are neat, and feel strange and menacing, and the writing on the crocodile is really strong. The Netherland being the way it is could be accounted for by Heaton having read Peter Pan to NICO, but some Netherland elements (the PSI crystals, the lobster) really feel like they're a different genre from the stuff the submarine base set up for. If the crystals were some other sort of object, something more intrinsically connected with who NICO is and how NICO sees the world, I don't think there'd be this dissonance.

(1 edit)

Thanks!

The balancing is definitely a little loose, and having a more developed base is meant to be counterweighted by the players taking on more difficult missions. Although you can definitely also use Externalities to chip away at base progress if you need to.

X-Com 2 was a huge part of the influence for this supplement, and I'm happy that shone through.

Ghost Tiger Incident is a FIST mission set in Soviet territory.

The PDF is 2 pages, with a solid, sparse cover and a surprisingly lush interior page with great visuals and a solid, cohesive WWII mission board sort of look.

Contents-wise, Ghost Tiger feels like a great bottle episode. It's got a simple premise (there's a possessed tank killing people) and it's open ended enough to allow the PCs to approach its core problem in any number of ways. It also has built in escalating stakes, and some nice atmospheric notes. And it does this all with maybe three paragraphs of text.

Overall, this is an incredibly tight and flavorful scenario. It's quick, it's direct, it has a *lot* of potential for convention or oneshot play. Absolutely pick this up if you're interested in FIST.

Ghost Tiger Incident is a FIST mission set in Soviet territory.

The PDF is 2 pages, with a solid, sparse cover and a surprisingly lush interior page with great visuals and a solid, cohesive WWII mission board sort of look.

Contents-wise, Ghost Tiger feels like a great bottle episode. It's got a simple premise (there's a possessed tank killing people) and it's open ended enough to allow the PCs to approach its core problem in any number of ways. It also has built in escalating stakes, and some nice atmospheric notes. And it does this all with maybe three paragraphs of text.

Overall, this is an incredibly tight and flavorful scenario. It's quick, it's direct, it has a *lot* of potential for convention or oneshot play. Absolutely pick this up if you're interested in FIST.

Dollhouse is a FIST scenario with a distinctly SCP vibe, in that the players are attempting to neutralize an extremely weird and cursed object.

The PDF is 2 pages, designed for use as a trifold. The text is clear and tightly packed, and it's easy to read. The adventure map is weird and complicated, but it helps to make sense of a weird and complicated situation, and it's extremely creative in how it's organized and presented.

Contents-wise, in this scenario the players enter a normal living room that is in fact an extradimensional maze with a weird doll at the center. Interacting with different parts of the living room transports them to different versions of the living room, all with their own unique, creepy, and/or dangerous features.

There's a *strong* liminal vibe to the scenario and a great sense of pacing. One the PCs have found the object they're supposed to extract, the house turns extremely hostile, and there's a great sense of dread followed by terror as the module concludes.

Overall, I think this must be one of the most creative and compact scenarios I've seen---both for FIST and for other systems. In fact, I think you could use Dollhouse in just about any modern horror game and it would shine bright. Absolutely pick this up if you get the chance.

Minor Issues:

-Are the encounters meant to trigger when the FIST team picks up the doll? Or is it implying the doll might simply leave its place in 25:65? I think it might be the former, but I had to puzzle over this for a while.

Dollhouse is a FIST scenario with a distinctly SCP vibe, in that the players are attempting to neutralize an extremely weird and cursed object.

The PDF is 2 pages, designed for use as a trifold. The text is clear and tightly packed, and it's easy to read. The adventure map is weird and complicated, but it helps to make sense of a weird and complicated situation, and it's extremely creative in how it's organized and presented.

Contents-wise, in this scenario the players enter a normal living room that is in fact an extradimensional maze with a weird doll at the center. Interacting with different parts of the living room transports them to different versions of the living room, all with their own unique, creepy, and/or dangerous features.

There's a *strong* liminal vibe to the scenario and a great sense of pacing. One the PCs have found the object they're supposed to extract, the house turns extremely hostile, and there's a great sense of dread followed by terror as the module concludes.

Overall, I think this must be one of the most creative and compact scenarios I've seen---both for FIST and for other systems. In fact, I think you could use Dollhouse in just about any modern horror game and it would shine bright. Absolutely pick this up if you get the chance.


Minor Issues:

-Are the encounters meant to trigger when the FIST team picks up the doll? Or is it implying the doll might simply leave its place in 25:65? I think it might be the former, but I had to puzzle over this for a while.

Slow Play Rules is an optional change for FIST to encourage longer missions.

The PDF is two pages, one of which is bare text and the other is the FIST compatability logo. Everything is straightforward and easy to read.

Slow Play's core changes are pretty comprehensive, covering everything from War Dice to item uses and ability uses. They're also written in such a way as to play well with other add-ons, so using Slow Play won't invalidate other expansions.

Overall, if you want FIST missions to feel a little more like a full session of a more conventional ttrpg, I'd give Slow Play a look. It's quick, direct, and comprehensive.

Slow Play Rules is an optional change for FIST to encourage longer missions.

The PDF is two pages, one of which is bare text and the other is the FIST compatability logo. Everything is straightforward and easy to read.

Slow Play's core changes are pretty comprehensive, covering everything from War Dice to item uses and ability uses. They're also written in such a way as to play well with other add-ons, so using Slow Play won't invalidate other expansions.

Overall, if you want FIST missions to feel a little more like a full session of a more conventional ttrpg, I'd give Slow Play a look. It's quick, direct, and comprehensive.

Thanks!

Thank you for writing Kinmaker!

Cleared chapter 6, and I can now confirm thieves are straight busted. I stole Morholt's Waterwheel and other spells, then farmed infinite hits off of him with low damage weapons.

You can also strip an enemy of weapons, body block them, and then endlessly steal a vulnerary off and onto them for massive exp.

Also, I did some more thinking, and I know that crits are part of the FE formula, but what if you just removed enemies' ability to crit? Crits are interesting on the player's side, and I don't think they're 100% a bad mechanic, but on the computer's side they're sort of just an RNG check to see whether you need to redo a map. They might not be essential to the game's balance.

Whispers Of Damned is a series of audio clips for FIST.

It's one page in text, and of course also available in audio.

Overall, this is a neat immersion tool, and I didn't realize before how much of a value game-specific audios might be for the indie space. I've seen playlists elsewhere, but sound bites, soundscapes, custom soundtracks can all add a ton of immersion, and I'm always going to be happy to see them. Support this if you can!

Whispers Of Damned is a series of audio clips for FIST.

It's one page in text, and of course also available in audio.

Overall, this is a neat immersion tool, and I didn't realize before how much of a value game-specific audios might be for the indie space. I've seen playlists elsewhere, but sound bites, soundscapes, custom soundtracks can all add a ton of immersion, and I'm always going to be happy to see them. Support this if you can!

Sure, go for it!

Actually, this just occurred to me, but one way to enforce the adventure's pacing is this:

-To prepare the FIST team for the op, they are put through a ritual that temporarily transforms them into human children. The ritual will wear off in 72 hours, but cannot be reversed until then.

Nest is a FIST scenario that feels just slightly out of genre---almost a Kids On Bikes or Tales From The Loop adventure, but with a twist on that formula too.

The PDF is 4 pages, with some nice splashes of color and a clean, readable layout. There's a lot of redaction of the text, which creates a sort of anti-canon in places, but it doesn't really damage the reader's ability to understand the module.

The source material this adventure is pulling from is weird, and there's a quirky, off-beat tone throughout. Plotwise, you play as FIST agents posing as kids to gather intel on a cosmic monster posing as a quirky family-friendly-80s-kids-movie outsider, and the way this recontextualizes every scene in the game is really cool!

It also means there's sort of a bunch of adventures inside the adventure, as the cosmic monster wants to psychically harvest uplifting experiences, and so it tries to drag everyone into heartwarming 80s kids movie excursions, which the PCs need to go along with in order to learn more about it...

It's neat and tense and weird.

I think my only quibble is that the cosmic monster is tough---it's got very high stats---but it doesn't really have a weakness that I could find in the text. So there isn't really a mechanical incentive to investigate it at all, just blast it with the highest powered weaponry the players can scrounge. GMs can change this on the fly, and clever players can find ways to turn some of its features against it, but it's then on the GM to decide that this changes the monster's mechanics---otherwise the group is in for an extremely tough fight.

Overall, this is a really solid adventure concept with some great slow burn storytelling potential and a weird/tense/jokey vibe throughout. It's interesting as a FIST adventure, and I think it could also work pretty easily in any Kids On Bikes style game. Definitely run this if you get the chance.

Nest is a FIST scenario that feels just slightly out of genre---almost a Kids On Bikes or Tales From The Loop adventure, but with a twist on that formula too.

The PDF is 4 pages, with some nice splashes of color and a clean, readable layout. There's a lot of redaction of the text, which creates a sort of anti-canon in places, but it doesn't really damage the reader's ability to understand the module.

The source material this adventure is pulling from is weird, and there's a quirky, off-beat tone throughout. Plotwise, you play as FIST agents posing as kids to gather intel on a cosmic monster posing as a quirky family-friendly-80s-kids-movie outsider, and the way this recontextualizes every scene in the game is really cool!

It also means there's sort of a bunch of adventures inside the adventure, as the cosmic monster wants to psychically harvest uplifting experiences, and so it tries to drag everyone into heartwarming 80s kids movie excursions, which the PCs need to go along with in order to learn more about it...

It's neat and tense and weird.

I think my only quibble is that the cosmic monster is tough---it's got very high stats---but it doesn't really have a weakness that I could find in the text. So there isn't really a mechanical incentive to investigate it at all, just blast it with the highest powered weaponry the players can scrounge. GMs can change this on the fly, and clever players can find ways to turn some of its features against it, but it's then on the GM to decide that this changes the monster's mechanics---otherwise the group is in for an extremely tough fight.

Overall, this is a really solid adventure concept with some great slow burn storytelling potential and a weird/tense/jokey vibe throughout. It's interesting as a FIST adventure, and I think it could also work pretty easily in any Kids On Bikes style game. Definitely run this if you get the chance.

Enigma Team is an alternative game mode for FIST that focuses on intelligence gathering and espionage over action-first tactical engagements.

The PDF is 16 pages, with a straightforward layout and dense but well organized text that's easy to read.

Contents-wise, Enigma Team adds a new wrinkle to the lore, where FIST isn't just an organization composed of freewheeling do-gooder mercenary strike teams. It also works in conjunction with Enigma Teams, who gather information for those mercenaries to use.

The main mechanical feature of Enigma Team is investigative trainings, which give a bonus to certain avenues of investigation. There's a long list to pull from, with some headings spelled out in more detail than others.

There's also a detailed list of other sources teams can call on for help, ranging from computers to aliens to summoned spirits.

For GMs, there's a lot of discussion on how to structure an investigation, and how to make its moving parts satisfying for the players to interact with.  None of this is really mechanical, but it's good advice, and worth the read.

Overall, if you want to play a more gumeshoe-y version of FIST, or if you want some material for an unusual variant mission to break your normal campaign's structure, I'd recommend giving Enigma Team a shot.

Enigma Team is an alternative game mode for FIST that focuses on intelligence gathering and espionage over action-first tactical engagements.

The PDF is 16 pages, with a straightforward layout and dense but well organized text that's easy to read.

Contents-wise, Enigma Team adds a new wrinkle to the lore, where FIST isn't just an organization composed of freewheeling do-gooder mercenary strike teams. It also works in conjunction with Enigma Teams, who gather information for those mercenaries to use.

The main mechanical feature of Enigma Team is investigative trainings, which give a bonus to certain avenues of investigation. There's a long list to pull from, with some headings spelled out in more detail than others.

There's also a detailed list of other sources teams can call on for help, ranging from computers to aliens to summoned spirits.

For GMs, there's a lot of discussion on how to structure an investigation, and how to make its moving parts satisfying for the players to interact with.  None of this is really mechanical, but it's good advice, and worth the read.

Overall, if you want to play a more gumeshoe-y version of FIST, or if you want some material for an unusual variant mission to break your normal campaign's structure, I'd recommend giving Enigma Team a shot.

Bleak Isle is a violent and nihilistic horror adventure for FIST. For real, the content warning isn't messing around. There's a lot of description of human meanness and gore in here.

Visuals-wise, the PDF is 12 pages with a gorgeous, emotive cover and a really nice, atmospheric full page interior illustration midway through. The rest of the PDF is more straightforward, with clean, easy to read text but no major flourishes.

Contents-wise, the tone here is more gnarly and somber than almost any other FIST material, but it fits in perfectly with any other tense modern slasher.

The writing is strong, and the setup (a bunch of slashers lure the FIST team to an island to hunt them) makes for a solid premise. There's a lot of individual encounters that have some interesting texture to them, and the GM has a lot of freedom to scale the threat level of the scenario based on how the players are doing.

Mechanics-wise, each foe is a unique challenge, and combinations of foes can shape some extremely interesting tactical encounters. However, the hook for getting the PCs to the island isn't actually baited, and to some extent you're relying on the players choosing to stay to play the adventure, or else you're having to actively work as the GM to cut off their routes of egress.

Overall, if you like your game of FIST heroic-toned and A-Team-y, don't use this. It's very much a subversion of that style. On the other hand, if you like scenarios for Delta Green and movies like Don't Breathe and Wrong Turn where there's a genuine nasty edge, this fits that style perfectly. And if you want to repurpose this scenario for something like Hunter or Delta Green, I think it would work very well in that regard.

Minor Issues:

-A map would add a lot to this scenario. It's possible to figure out where everything is just from the book, but it's a little slower than using a map, and this scenario wants to feel very immediate.

-This is such a weird quibble, but the Sixteen feel a little more like renegade FIST members than renegade CYCLOPS ones. CYCLOPS and FIST get along so poorly in core that it feels strange CYCLOPS agents would nurse that kind of grudge against their enemies, whereas abandoned FIST agents could *definitely* get this weird and violent without it feeling out of character.

Bleak Isle is a violent and nihilistic horror adventure for FIST. For real, the content warning isn't messing around. There's a lot of description of human meanness and gore in here.

Visuals-wise, the PDF is 12 pages with a gorgeous, emotive cover and a really nice, atmospheric full page interior illustration midway through. The rest of the PDF is more straightforward, with clean, easy to read text but no major flourishes.

Contents-wise, the tone here is more gnarly and somber than almost any other FIST material, but it fits in perfectly with any other tense modern slasher.

The writing is strong, and the setup (a bunch of slashers lure the FIST team to an island to hunt them) makes for a solid premise. There's a lot of individual encounters that have some interesting texture to them, and the GM has a lot of freedom to scale the threat level of the scenario based on how the players are doing.

Mechanics-wise, each foe is a unique challenge, and combinations of foes can shape some extremely interesting tactical encounters. However, the hook for getting the PCs to the island isn't actually baited, and to some extent you're relying on the players choosing to stay to play the adventure, or else you're having to actively work as the GM to cut off their routes of egress.

Overall, if you like your game of FIST heroic-toned and A-Team-y, don't use this. It's very much a subversion of that style. On the other hand, if you like scenarios for Delta Green and movies like Don't Breathe and Wrong Turn where there's a genuine nasty edge, this fits that style perfectly. And if you want to repurpose this scenario for something like Hunter or Delta Green, I think it would work very well in that regard.


Minor Issues:

-A map would add a lot to this scenario. It's possible to figure out where everything is just from the book, but it's a little slower than using a map, and this scenario wants to feel very immediate.

-This is such a weird quibble, but the Sixteen feel a little more like renegade FIST members than renegade CYCLOPS ones. CYCLOPS and FIST get along so poorly in core that it feels strange CYCLOPS agents would nurse that kind of grudge against their enemies, whereas abandoned FIST agents could *definitely* get this weird and violent without it feeling out of character.

Infil/Exfil is a quick supplement that adds some extra charm to the start and end of your FIST missions.

The PDF is 2 pages, with a nice technical manual feel to its pamphlet layout. Everything is cleanly organized and easy to read.

Contents-wise, there's a range of different types of infiltration and exfiltration options, but they ultimately boil down to a dice roll to see if something goes wrong. And statistically, something usually goes wrong.

None of the complications are so severe that that they'll kill characters outright, but they can put the squad in difficult situations or force hard choices. And for exfiltrations, they can require the operatives to have a backup plan.

I think my only quibble with Infil/Exfil is that it seems like with a little bit of bad luck, it's easy to get stuck in a loop of multiple failed exfiltrations. To that end, it might make more sense to only roll for a consequence on an exfiltration if the exfiltration is hot.

Overall, this is a really neat add-on for any game of FIST. It keeps the entry and exit points for missions nice and dynamic, and adds some extra tactical flair to a game that revels in precisely that.

Infil/Exfil is a quick supplement that adds some extra charm to the start and end of your FIST missions.

The PDF is 2 pages, with a nice technical manual feel to its pamphlet layout. Everything is cleanly organized and easy to read.

Contents-wise, there's a range of different types of infiltration and exfiltration options, but they ultimately boil down to a dice roll to see if something goes wrong. And statistically, something usually goes wrong.

None of the complications are so severe that that they'll kill characters outright, but they can put the squad in difficult situations or force hard choices. And for exfiltrations, they can require the operatives to have a backup plan.

I think my only quibble with Infil/Exfil is that it seems like with a little bit of bad luck, it's easy to get stuck in a loop of multiple failed exfiltrations. To that end, it might make more sense to only roll for a consequence on an exfiltration if the exfiltration is hot.

Overall, this is a really neat add-on for any game of FIST. It keeps the entry and exit points for missions nice and dynamic, and adds some extra tactical flair to a game that revels in precisely that.

Played through the current build. It's fun, well-written, and noticeably difficult. Strong recommend to anyone who likes Fire Emblem.

Specific thoughts from my playthrough in case they're helpful for design stuff:

-If you go straight to the setting screen before you've learned the controls and then try to exit back to menu the rpgmaker way (pressing Esc,) you instead close the game. It could be worth having a 'return to main menu' option in the settings menu for people who have just booted the game and don't know Esc is a trap.

-Petting Baldur is a spectacular mechanic. Absolute serotonin in game form. However, you may want to mention pets can be repeated, and that some chapters have talks between characters that work the same as pets. I'm pretty sure I've missed a few pets because I didn't realize this. Also the trial-and-error of mashing people next to each other to generate talk commands feels kinda frustrating. This is a part of the FE formula that I'm glad later FEs streamlined.

-Dead levels. I know they're part of the FE formula, but it would be nice to have +1 HP or +1 Luck instead of a dead level.

-Good lord map 4 is hard on normal. You're really reliant on a good rng seed winnowing down enemy numbers or having known this map was coming and power-levelling a character to formation-break your way through it. Also every time you die you have to wait through the rng fighting itself again. A map 3.5 or a shop or something to help you gear up for it would help a lot. I'm also genuinely not sure this map is possible on harder difficulties unless allied units also benefit from the stat-scaling.

-Weapons not having durability is interesting. Durability is FE's check on always-use-the-powerful-weapon gameplay, and shops are FE's check to running out of weapons and bricking your save. Without durability, I think there's room for a meta where all weapons are equally good but all do different things, but I'm not quite sure that's how they currently work.

-Oh, thieves can steal people's weapons without even risking getting countered? The game's hard, so I'm glad for all the tools I can get my hands on, but this feels mega busted. At least it's a solution for enemy mages.

-I'm on map 6, and enemy magic feels like a bit of a one-shot machine. Thrud strolled into the gigantic range of a lightning mage and got instantly crit killed from full health, and this sorta makes the only tool for dealing with mage groups the antimagic harp. And even then, you need a character who can reliably one-shot mages because they have to keep dancing back in and out of reach to refresh their buffs, and the rest of the team has to keep backpedaling to make sure the mages don't lock onto anyone else and instakill them. Because any character dying = game over, high dps enemies with decent crit potential means there's a certain amount of rng to whether you have to reset each run. I don't think this map is impossible. I can sandbag it. But even on normal it feels like it's made more for save states than for regular console play.

I'm only at map 6, and I might take a break, but I'll thread more feedback here if I'm able to play further.

Thank you!