Quick Review: DC Adventures Hero’s Handbook

DC Adventures Hero’s Handbook – I’ve heard a lot about this product on various podcasts and blogs and I was interested in seeing it when it arrived.  I’ve never been a huge fan of the super hero genre for role playing or honestly of the DC Universe.  Now that I have this PDF in my hands, my expectations were matched, exceeded and then blown out of the water with a large blast of energy.

Let’s start with the very first bit you’ll see.  Alex Ross doing what he does best with his iconic cover art.  The art in this massive 280 page PDF is exceptional.  The Green Ronin folks had access to the DC Vaults and they obviously spent their time there well.  Speaking of iconic art – prepare to meet some iconic characters as well.  Even the most anti-comic book person will know such names as the Green Lantern, Superman, Batman, and the list goes on.  One after another icons of the super hero world are detailed for our reading pleasure.

At it’s core, the game is a d20 system but there have been some pretty interesting modifications.  A lot has been stripped out and it’s a smooth and well oiled system left behind.  Ability scores have been boiled down to their modifiers, two new stats have been added and feats have been redesigned and renamed as Advantages.

Then there are the powers – the heart and soul of any superhero RPG.  Powers refer to all extraordinary traits inherent in the superhero (other than stats).  There are a ton of them to choose from.  You build up your characters powers by taking “effects” which when combined give you such things as super speed or flight.  Each Effect has extras that are relevant to these effects and also flaws that pertain to it.   A bit of thought goes into character creation at this point but it works to make unique and interesting characters to play.

This book also contains a good deal of back ground information from which you can build your setting and campaign.  There are a ton of well known heroes who’s stats you can delve in to and suggestions for playing the game.  The PDF is done very well, is completely bookmarked and easy to navigate and honestly, a lot of fun to read.

As someone who’s not a major super hero fan, I can easily see myself playing or running a game in the DC Adventures system.   5 out of 5 stars.

[tags]rpg, role playing games, DC hero, DC, super heroes[/tags]

3 thoughts on “Quick Review: DC Adventures Hero’s Handbook

Add yours

  1. I’m a fan of both and what I’ve seen up til now makes me want to get my hands on it. I suppose I never got into Mutants & Masterminds because 1) I wasn’t shopping for Yet Another Generic Supers RPG and 2) the d20 stigma.

    I put thought to virtual paper about the Quick Start pdf and the more I wrote about it, the more I wanted to play it.


  2. I’ve read this as well, and he’s right, it is excellent. If you wonderful readers want a longer look at the book, I’m planning to do a write-up sometime soon that goes in to more detail.


  3. It really is a fun, quick system – almost like d20 lite but with enough meat to make it, well, not lite. Bad analogy. If you like super hero games, you’ll like this.


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