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Thread: DEVIL'S GULCH - Basic Roleplaying Adventures in the Weird Wild West

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    Monograph DEVIL'S GULCH - Basic Roleplaying Adventures in the Weird Wild West

    Devil's Gulch is a typical town of the American Old West from 1870 through 1885. It is a collection of buildings set along a single dirt road with side streets where private residences are found. It features saloons, a bank, a general store, and a church. Most buildings are made of wood, though some boast of a brick addition or a stone foundation). Hitching rails are found in front of most buildings, and water troughs are set sporadically along the main street. Train tracks form one of the townís borders. On the outskirts of Devilís Gulch are mines, ranches, and box canyons perfect for hiding desperadoes. The cast of characters includes gamblers, gunfighters, a preacher, a blacksmith, and a nymph du prairie (thatís a prostitute to those in the know). If you make Devilís Gulch a base of operations for your Wild or Weird West campaign, the players may be interested in taking on the roles already filled by NPCs. There are many players who would jump at the opportunity to play the town sheriff or even the established gambler.

    The basic layout of Devilís Gulch is suitable for an historical campaign set in the American Old West, but there are many suggestions included for placing the town in the Weird West. You can modify the setting even beyond the authorís suggestions: Devilís Gulch could be easily transferred to a steam-punk setting in which the town is an outpost of the new British Colony on Mars; perhaps it is populated with humans and grays, and the real trouble comes from tribes of xenomorphs roaming the Martian landscape; or maybe Devilís Gulch is an immersive amusement park created by an evil gunslinger with superpowers, just waiting to test his skills against your heroes! The town is a tool to use and transform as needed. Also included is a fold-out town illustration and diagram with major establishments identified. On the other side we offer a broadsheet touting Dr. Farnam's Astounding Medicine Show.

    By Troy Wilhelmson. 88 pages. Published by Chaosium October 2010.
    Last edited by Trifletraxor; September 28th, 2011 at 12:44.
    Ef plest master, this mighty fine grub!
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    Default Differences Between Aces High and Devil's Gulch

    So, I have the two Wild West books and thought it might be useful to compare and contrast them. Don't think of this as a full review of either book.

    Devil's Gulch:
    Assumes historical setting with options to add "the weird"
    Details one town with numerous NPCs for play.
    Not a lot of information on what "The Wild West" as a genre is.
    Five new character occupations such as Mad Scientist and Medicine Man and chart mapping traditional Wild West occupations to BGB occupations.
    Handles "triggernometry" through a combination new skills and spot rules.
    Only new creatures are manitou.
    Guidelines for creating Native, Chinese, African American characters.
    Two scenarios, both of which are Weird West.
    High production values, but somewhat confusing layout.
    Excellent art.

    Aces High:
    Assumes Weird West setting by default
    Covers the Wild West as a genre, doesn't detail one specific location.
    Thirty-one occupations, some of which could be handled by BGB occupations.
    Handles many of the Wild West signature gun techniques as a combination of new skills and spot rules.
    A very well researched bestiary.
    Detailed rules and options for creating Native, Chinese, African American characters. As well as outlaws.
    One scenario, which is Weird West
    Good production values, solid layout.
    Good art.

    In a nutshell, I like them both and am glad I purchased both. Each one has things about it that I like and things that I think the other book did better. I would use the town created in Devil's Gulch as a backdrop for an Aces High campaign. It's interesting in that neither one seems complete without the other.
    Last edited by cjbowser; October 22nd, 2010 at 18:59.

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    Just got a copy from Chaosium (thanks Chaosium! )! Haven't opened it yet though. I'll handle it over to our western GM who handled the Aces High scenarios. Should kick-start that campaign!

    SGL.
    Ef plest master, this mighty fine grub!
    116/420. High Priest.

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    There are only 2 layout issues that confused me on first reading, but they are pretty easy to over-look.

    This is a great source book. The artwork is fantastic, the index is decent, and all of the NPCs come with a few options to give you some flexibility with the kind of campaign you're running. This book makes an excellent companion to any campaign set in the late 19th century new world, wierd or not.

    I highly recommend it.

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    I bought my copy at my local brick and mortar. It's my first wild-west setting and I'm quite happy with it. All that's left is to get my group's eyes off of 4e...

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    Actually, for me the artwork represents a step backward from the great art that was in the 6e and also Unseen Masters. The art is akin to Arkham Now - a matter of preference...I suppose. The rules are fairly solid - although, I prefer the rules that were outlined in Worlds of Cthulhu (which also had better art).

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    Bought it and like it. Great, fun art. Useful plot hooks and characters. I hope the author does another weird west cause I'd buy it.

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    Me too! Deadlands is too over-the-top fo me.

    Guy

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    I picked this up last night. I love it. The artwork is fun, quirky, and evocative. It really helpes give each NPC a distinct personality. Devil's Gulch is full of stereotypes and archetypes, yet many have a fresh take or spin. It feels like a real place.
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    Sorry, I like my Cthulhu art to scare me...

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