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BESM (Big Eyes, Small Mouth) 3rd Edition $19.99
Publisher: White Wolf
by Christopher D C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/28/2013 22:19:12

BIG EYES, SMALL MOUTH 3rd Edition (or BESM 3e) is sadly the final bow for the Tri-Stat System, as Guardians Of Order went out of business in 2006 and White Wolf/Arthaus has declined to continue supporting the Tri-Stat line (for both legal and financial reasons). This is truly a pity, as BESM 3e is one of the best multi-genre RPGs ever published and is a fitting capstone to the Tri-Stat Era. It has just about everything a gamer could ask for: an easy to learn rules system, character creation options that allow you to build any sort of hero or heroine you can think of (and I do mean ANY sort, the rules allow you that much flexibility), fast-as-lightning combat rules, an extensive section on equipment, helpful hints for Game Masters, and even a "multi-verse" campaign setting. There are also options that allow you to play a stripped down, "Basic" version of BESM 3e to make the game even more versitile, and there's even a "Take 6" variant that lets you play the game without using dice at all!

Only a few small quibbles keep this from being a full 5-star review. As other reviewers have mentioned, the Dynamic Powers Attribute is very poorly defined here; I suspect this was a problem with the editing, as previous editions of BESM and Tri-Stat dX have made it far clearer what a character can do with Dynamic Powers (for example, Tri-Stat dX states a character may use Dynamic Powers to simulate a number of Attribute Levels equal to twice the level in Dynamic Powers, with the restriction that no one simulated Attribute may have a Level higher than the original Dynamic Powers Level). Only one sample character is provided; a few more examples would have been helpful, especially ones for NPCs with lower point values. And for long-time players of BESM 1e and 2e, they have to rework every character/equipment sheet they've created, as the changes in 3e make it completely incompatible with all earlier Tri-Stat products.

But all in all, BESM 3e is a master work, and well deserving of a place in your RPG library. The demise of the Tri-Stat System is a sad thing, but it certainly went out on a high note with BIG EYES, SMALL MOUTH 3rd Edition. And if you're not really a fan of Japanese animation, don't let that keep you away from BESM 3e: you can, after all, do ANYTHING you want with the rules....

[4 of 5 Stars!]
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BESM (Big Eyes, Small Mouth) 3rd Edition
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