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BESM D20 Revised Edition Anime Role-Player's Handbook Hardcover – July 13, 2004
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Top Customer Reviews
I love this book so much that when I loaned another copy out to a friend for a few months, I missed mine so much I bought this copy and I don't regret it one bit. As an added plus, there's even mech-designer stuff in the back, as well as a ton of ideas for making your own settings. I feel it's worth saying that this is by no means a perfect system, hence why I gave it only a 4 out of 5... but it's a lot of fun, and deep down that's where it really counts when it comes to any good roleplaying game.
The key is, don't be an annoying player. If you want to, you can break the combat system and obliterate everything within range, and if everyone is cool with it, more power to you. But this system is designed to allow less focus on rolls, stats, and rules, and more streamlined to encourage actual role play. You know, getting into character and doing what s/he would rather than what seems like the best plan of action.
This game follows the d20 system, and thus relies heavily on the Dungeons & Dragons Players' Handbook v3.0 or 3.5. This book offers details on how to convert characters from the original D&D to to BESM, and offer a few extra points to balance them. BESM introduces a new kind character ability called attributes. Attributes are your superpowers. They allow you to fly at supersonic speeds, shoot fireballs from your eyes, gain followers, shapeshift (better than polymorph), and countless other things.
There are a handful of poorly explained rules. All of the high speed attributed are in miles per hour, so to save you some of headache, 10 MPH = 88' per round or about 180 squares. Some of the abilities let you move well over 1,000 MPH (did I mention that it is a bit overpowered?) which can make space travel possible if that's where your campaign is going (and the planets aren't too far away). Some rules are explained somewhat ambiguously, for example, the Art of Distraction. It says that you can convince a group of listeners to do one thing, even elect you as their president. Would they kill for you? If you were televised and well trained, could you sway 95%-100% of viewers to do almost anything? It doesn't say you can't.
This is a fantastically fun and quirky system made for anime fans. If you love anime, the d20 system and your group of friends, play this game. It is a little rough to make sense of, a little overpowered, and a lot of fun.