Friday, May 27, 2011

Intrigued by a new Wilderness of Mirrors

I just saw that the "double-oh-two" (002) edition of Wilderness of Mirrors is available as a PDF. There's a six-page preview up on DriveThruRPG, but it doesn't offer much in terms of what's different in the new edition. Since the actual book is itself about 14 pages long, a 6-page preview is rather generous. I can't really ask for more, even if it isn't answering my questions.

So what are the differences between the first and second edition of Wilderness of Mirrors? Here's what I can gleam from the preview:
  • The stats are no longer named for Roman gods. Judging from the index, it looks as though the whole mythology theme has been moved to what is perhaps an optional setting that takes up about a page at the end of the book?
  • There's a new stat that represents using muscles or physical force to get what you want. 
  • The stat that was for killing looks to have been basically split up into shooting and the new muscles-related stat.
  • As near as I can tell, the stat for being team leader is gone. 
  • The final page has some sort of list of (possibly real-world) intelligence agencies.
What changes I see look good. The mythology stat names worked against the theme/setting of the game, so I'm happy to see them gone. Saturn was a dump stat for all the PCs except the actual team leader, so I'm happy to see that stat not just renamed but removed. Setting information, even if it is just a page or two, could be good for getting your mental gears turning. What John Wick did choose to change or add, looks to be 100% improvements.

One change I would have liked to see, but clearly isn't in the new edition, is fixes to the character creation math. As mentioned in my various other posts, there are certain builds that are just better than others in terms of in-game effectiveness, but if everyone made the "smart" decision during character creation, you end up with lots of overlap and little differentiation between PCs. Replacing Saturn with "The Heavy" may fix that a little, but probably not completely. Which makes me curious as to whether or not there's any changes to the way mission points and threat are generated,  as  you could perhaps fix the problems there.

Links to some of my previous posts about Wilderness of Mirrors:
So now I have to decide if it's worth picking up the new edition. On one hand, it's only 5$, so I can clearly afford it. On the other hand, it's $5 for just 8 pages that I haven't read, most of which might be content I already have (so the big improvement might just be a spiffier layout). To further complicate the decision, the new version of Wilderness of Mirrors will eventually end up reprinted in the upcoming The Big Book of Little Games, price unknown, release date unknown. Hmm.

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