Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay Starter Set (2018)

I wish the promise of the Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay Starter Set (2018) had manifested in the hardcover. There are six pre-generated characters, printed in luscious gatefold folios, counters for advantage, some rules reference sheets, percentile dice and some very nice maps. The meat of the thing is split between two books.

The first is the Adventure Book, which is the main teaching tool. Most of it is taking up by the scenario Making the Rounds, which teaches you how to use this (rather stripped down) system as you go. Refreshingly, Part One introduces the combat system and Part Two immediately switches gears into a lengthy roleplaying section — so as much as the combat system bothers me, the game is consciously not focused on combat alone and that is a good thing. It seems to play easy enough here, but it does feel incomplete, like a primer, rather than the real thing. Ten short scenarios round things out for additional play — there is a big honking chunk of game time here.

The second book is a sourcebook for Ubersreik, the city WFRP4E is currently focusing its attention and new material on. Everything in this book is great. I love the fact that they developed something new to explore and made that central, with the Enemy Within revamp both the forthcoming main event and something that can be ignored if you want. This book is the jumping off point for the next several scenario books and it does a great job of inviting exploration.

Can you use just the Starter Set rules for all your WFRP4E needs? I mean, if you like these pre-gens, maybe? It does feel incomplete, though, like you’ll get into the larger world and run into situations where the rules just cascade into complexity. After all, the currencies (advantage, resilience, etc.) are still in the game here, they just aren’t fully explained yet.

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