A Review of the Role Playing Game Supplement Wisdom from the Wastelands Issue #21: High-Tech Melee Weapons

Wisdom from the Wastelands Issue #21: High-Tech Melee Weapons is a role playing game supplement published by Skirmisher Publishing for use with the Mutant Future game. As such, it is covered by the Open Game License with some of it considered to be Open Game Content as a result. The Wisdom from the Wastelands series provides new options and rules for the Mutant Future game; this issue concentrates on high-tech melee weapons.

This is a PDF which is available from RPGNow for $0.99 and is also included in the High-Tech Weapons Bundle for $2.99 and the Wisdom from the Wastelands Issues 1-52 Bundle for $27.74. It was actually purchased as part of a special bundle at the greatly reduced price of $0.01. This is a six page PDF of which one page is the Open Game License and front matter.

Wisdom from the Wastelands Issue #21: High-Tech Melee WeaponsThere is a brief introduction explaining how some of the Ancients did use obsolete weapons, and that this issue deals with new methods of making them, creating new weapons as a result. It also suggests that no weapon should have more than two modifications as there is a definite potential to create game-breaking weapons otherwise.

Section I: Alternate Construction Materials has new materials for melee weapons; dura-aluminium, crystalline obsidian, duralloy, conduct alloy and super dense. The different materials have different properties, such as being light, hard to break or extra damaging.

Section II: Edging has new edges for blades, carbon filament, diamond, gamma xenon, keen, laser-sharpened, molecular and vibrating. These all essentially do more damage, tend to do critical hits more often and often have to hit bonuses.

Section III: Enhancements are technological enhancements to weapons that increase their damage. These are cryo weapons, energetic proton blades, energised weapons, harmonised energy weapons, laser blades, laser crystals (which come in different colours), paralyzing and stunning, radioactive weapons and thermal weapons. These do different types of damage, with strengths against different opponents. Radioactive weapons are made simply by leaving a normal weapon in a radioactive area until it becomes permanently radioactive.

Section IV: New Melee Weapons has a list of new, normal, melee hand weapons, exotic types not included in the core rulebook (which could be enhanced using these methods) and vibro weapons.

Section V: New Combat Rules has options for throwing melee weapons, dual-wielding and wielding a two-handed weapon in one hand.

Wisdom from the Wastelands Issue #21: High-Tech Melee Weapons in Review

The PDF has a hyperlinked table of contents but lacks bookmarks. Navigation is therefore okay for a small supplement.

The text maintains a two column format and no errors were noticed. The illustrations, as is typical for a Skirmisher publications, would appear to be vaguely appropriate stock photos that have been tweaked to make them look more like illustrations.

The supplement makes reference to a couple of other supplements in the series, primarily referring to Wisdom from the Wastelands Issue #1: Artifacts, Manuals, and Toolkits, but also to Wisdom from the Wastelands Issue #11: Optional Combat Rules.

As mentioned at the beginning, there is a definite ability to create overpowered superweapons using these options. Many of the Edging options are perhaps the most dangerously unbalancing, as these generally do not require power and therefore provide unlimited bonuses to attacks. However, these could also be considered to be the equivalent of magical weapons; the keen modification is nicknamed a “vorpal” blade after all. Certainly, combining more than two modifications – especially if the wielder has good access to power cells – will create weapons that could become unstoppable in melee combat. Caution is definitely advised when using these.

The supplement does provide a new range of interesting options to modify weapons that a Mutant Lord can pick and choose from. The new weapons add some standard RPG weapons into the mix, and the new combat rules can add a bit more complexity and depth if desired. Wisdom from the Wastelands Issue #21: High-Tech Melee Weapons can be found by clicking here.

 

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