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Feng Shui: Action Movie Roleplaying Hardcover – August 1, 1999


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$28.92 FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Only 5 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

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Feng Shui: Action Movie Roleplaying + On Location: The Feng Shui GM Screen + Friends of the Dragon (Feng Shui)
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Atlas Games (August 1, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1887801766
  • ISBN-13: 978-1887801768
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 8.5 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,141,559 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Robin D. Laws designed the GUMSHOE investigative roleplaying system, including such games as The Esoterrorists and Ashen Stars. Among his other acclaimed RPG credits are Feng Shui and HeroQuest. Recent highlights of his nine books of fiction are New Tales of the Yellow Sign, Blood of the City and The Worldwound Gambit. As Creative Director of Stone Skin Press he has edited such fiction anthologies as The New Hero, Shotguns v. Cthulhu, and The Lion and the Aardvark: Aesop's New Fables. Upcoming projects include Hillfolk, the first game using the DramaSystem RPG rules for riveting personal conflict. With longtime collaborator Kenneth Hite he recently launched a new podcast, Ken and Robin Talk About Stuff.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
5 star
78%
4 star
22%
3 star
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See all 9 customer reviews
Looking forward to the new edition!
William Bargo
Any NPC without a name is a dime-a-dozen goon who, in most cases, will be knocked out with just ONE punch (or kick, shot, whatever).
Tivor
This is a game in which the session can be only as good as the players' contributions to it.
Movie Lover

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Michael Grochmal on April 1, 2000
Format: Hardcover
This is a role-playing game for people who want to shed angst-ridden melodrama and sweeping tactical rules and go straight for the one-on-one action of a fast-paced action movie. With character concepts such as "Scrappy Kid", "Killer", and "Everyday Hero". This system puts an emphasis on style and action, where almost anything can be resolved with 2 six-sided dice. The book also provides an in-depth world to put the characters in, but it is easily altered to suit the GameMaster's desires. Many of the descriptions of skills and Schticks (essentially powers) are tongue-in-cheek, again putting emphasis on the genre.
Combat is made to be quick and furious, with almost everyone having the same basic attributes. Other than Bruisers, everyone has the same amount of damage that can be absorbed. An attack will have the character go into detail as to what he wants to do to the villain, then rolls. Success means that whatever he said just happened. Thus, where most games would say "I shoot the guy with the sword", Feng Shui would prefer "The hero brandishes his gleeming pistol and vaults over a counter while he fills the air with his hot vengeance." Again, an emphasis on style.
Feng Shui is a perfect game for the action of martial arts-movie lover. Instead of just watching your favorite hero fight evil, you can assume the role of title character and plunge headlong into the adventure that you always wanted, from the grimy streets of ChinaTown, to the forbidding Himilayas, to different places in time. Anything is possible, limited only by your imagination.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Tivor on October 4, 2005
Format: Hardcover
This rules-lite game is focused on having fun, fun, fun! And its action-flick background makes it more appealing to non-gamers than other popular RPGs where you may have to spend substantial time explaining the setting and character races, classes, etc. Most people are familiar with typical action-movie settings, so that familiarity helps immensely in drawing players in. Feng Shui does have its own setting, but it's really an elaborate excuse to have all kinds of action-flick character types (like ancient sorcerors and futuristic cyborgs) coexist. A GM can easily come up with his own settings to suit his story. If it would work in an action B-movie, it'll work in Feng Shui!

Perhaps the most telling rule in Feng Shui is the one about Named and Unnamed Characters. Any NPC (aka GMC) who has a name is an important character with a full complement of stats. Any NPC without a name is a dime-a-dozen goon who, in most cases, will be knocked out with just ONE punch (or kick, shot, whatever). So in a typical combat, the PC party will mow through waves of Unnamed enemies, until an NPC with a Name enters, which is when the PCs go, "Ah, finally a worthy opponent. I'm all warmed up now. Let's fight!" Fun stuff.

Dice rolling is kept to a minimum, and emphasis is on imaginative, stylish storytelling (or fight choreographing), on both GM and players' parts. My only gripe is that I wish the book had some guidelines on creating a new character type, but there are plenty of character types included already, so a GM can either modify an existing one, or have a pretty good idea on how to create one from scratch without throwing the game balance off too much.

If you like realism in your games, then Feng Shui is not for you. But even so, I think a lot of gamers will find much to learn from Feng Shui's lighthearted approach to roleplaying.

Highly recommended.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Movie Lover on December 14, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The problem, at least for me, with most RPGs is "hyper-reality"; that is, they have statistics and rolls for everything, turning the gaming experience into a whole bunch of numbers juggling rather than a role-playing experience. This game, however is not one of them.

Up until "The Matrix" came out, Hong Kong action films remained the interest of only a few hardcore Western film fans. In these films, reality takes a backseat, if not thrown completely out of the car. Stories and action scenes are performed with virtually no restraint whatsoever, resulting in some truly eye-popping action sequences. But the action is not the only one to receve this shot of adrenaline. Stories receive the same treatment. Granted, the logical aspect has been thrown out the window, but the discuss very basic themes, like crime, family, honor, and loyalty, very basic issues that can appeal to everyone.

This game honors that ideal. Against a backdrop of a time-hopping "Secret War", players take on the roles of stereotypical roles found in Hong kong action films: the gold-hearted assassin, the cynical veteran cop, the grumpy old martial arts master, just to name a few.

Attributes are kept to a minimum, and there isn't one that determines how good you look. Skills encompass a large range of skills, so a character skilled in martial arts is also familiar with melee weapons, knows about martial arts styles, and has contacts in the martial arts world. Tired of trying to convert those copper pieces to gold? Here, you don't bother. You are either rich, a working stiff, or poor, able to afford what a person of your financial background could. Using up too much paper with all the information on your weapons, like length, weight, and range?
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