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Horror Recognition Guide (Hunter: The Vigil) Paperback – February 18, 2009

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 330 pages
  • Publisher: White Wolf Publishing (February 18, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1588463559
  • ISBN-13: 978-1588463555
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #360,673 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Rodney Meek VINE VOICE on April 5, 2009
I enjoyed this book a lot. But it's not what it claims to be nor what it is marketed as. If you are looking for a Worlds of Darkness equivalent to D&D's classic Monster Manual, you will be gravely disappointed. And if you think that you can use portions of this book for handouts or other props, I suspect you will find that to be non-workable as well. Is it a listing of NPCs you can use in your own campaign? Not really. Can you pull some adventure hooks out of it? Eh...I suppose, but really you'd only get the germ of an idea, not fully-fledged modules.

Really, this book is a collection of short stories, an excuse for some authors to play around with a set of common characters and try on a range of voices and styles. Most of the material is composed of email exchanges, blog entries, forensic reports, and journals and letters. Various hunters and allies encounter creatures including vampires, werewolves, ghosts, mages, the fey, Lovecraftian nightmares, and possibly alien abductors. Standout entries are "Oleg Chernenko" (about some kind of modern-day golem?), "City of Ghosts", the unsettling "Close Encounter" (where a hunter comes to realize that "They" know that he knows), "Gnosopharm" (a plausibly-rendered one-woman battle against clashing covens), and "The Vivisection".

It's actually pretty high-quality stuff, lavishly illustrated and filled with disturbing questions that receive few answers. If you crave some modern-day horror fiction in the White Wolf universe, this is your book. But as an RPG supplement, there's not much here for practical use.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Michael J. Tresca VINE VOICE on April 3, 2009
The Horror Recognition Guide, besides having a neat alliterative name, isn't much of a guide--it certainly won't help you with recognition of said horrors.

I purchased this book for its use as a potential prop in my existing conspiracy game. Although I'm familiar with the World of Darkness and the Hunter setting, I'm not running a Hunter game. I took the marketing text describing the book at face value: "Can be used as a prop in any Hunter: The Vigil game, or can be used by Storytellers and players as a resource from which to draw new encounter and story ideas."

The book contains a series of faux documents: hand-written diary pages, pictures, typed case files, and printouts of email correspondence. Collectively they each tell a tale of a Philadelphia Hunter cell and their encounters with the supernatural. These horrors range from your bog-standard bloodsucker to creepy cats that possess old ladies to alien doctors to something that may or may not be an ogre. In other words, standard World of Darkness stuff: werewolves, vampires, Frankenstein's monsters, dark faeries, mages, and some other weirdness.

As fiction, the stories range from entertaining to tedious. Although the Guide is supposed to be a series of documents collected to tell a story, the various pieces often read as if they were verbatim fiction--which they are. The journals are a little too coherent and verbose. Still, this is all about crafting a story from multiple sources and the premise holds up across the stories.

A few entries stand out. Blood Dolls is about vampires, which at this point have been so thoroughly covered that it's difficult to write anything new and interesting about them.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Michael O. Holland on May 3, 2009
I was leery about purchasing the Hunter Horror Recognition Guide because artifact products for RPGs are always a mixed bag of tricks. Sometimes they work and sometimes they do not. So I waited until my curiosity got the best of me and I ordered this book. I was not disappointed. The book appears to be the recovered case files of a semi-successful Hunter cell (semi-successful because they disappeared and left all this evidence behind, right?). The cell investigated several cases and their reports provide us with dozens and dozens of story seeds for the game. In the end, this book is a great purchase and one of the better examples of how cool artifact products can be.
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