A little over a year ago, I had the pleasure to write a review of the beta test rules for Knight Errant Media’s Titan Effect Kickstarter. If you missed it, I definitely recommend you go read it on High Level Games to see how it fared.

Before we get into specifics, this is not a sponsored post. There are some affiliate links to DrivethruRPG. With that said, I am not getting paid to write this review. In fact, the initial Beta Test review was something I did as a thank you to the team at High Level Games. When Titan Effect was fully released, I was given a “Thank You” copy of the complete rule book.

I loved what I saw from the beta test. And I have to be perfectly honest, I only bought Savage Worlds so I could run
Titan Effect with a group (still need to check this off my games to run wishlist). Now that we have the complete game, let’s dive right in.

Cost vs Value

During the Kickstarter, I foresaw Titan Effect coming in at 30-47 cents per page; leaning more on the 30 cents based on what was expected to come with the full rules. I was fairly close as cover/color choices will net you 21-41 cents per page (current sale on DrivethruRPG has books 25% off making that top end only 31 cents right now for premium hardcover).

The Kickstarter price I gave a perfect score. So how does the retail stack up?

My expected retail came in at 9/20 points going off of what I could see from the beta testing. After getting a read-through of the new material and seeing the new buying options. I am pleasantly surprised. There was mainly one thing I wanted to see going from Beta to Complete (more material) and that is exactly what I got. Savage Worlds third-party publishers tend to run higher than other companies. Because of this, I was more liberal in my scoring in this area than I would have for another system. 16/20 points

Art 

I said this last time, but I am not really a digital art fan. I’m also not huge into sci-fi and spies. But I do love comics and graphic novels. The art in Titan Effect is amazing. I loved it in the beta and what do you know? With the completed game, I got more of that same amazing art.

Normally, when different prints are available, I tell people to go for standard, but I can’t get enough of the art in Titan Effect. If you can, do yourself a favor and buy the premium color (especially while on sale). You’ll thank me for it. Hell, I’ll thank you for it! 10/10 points

Readability 

In my initial review, I compared Titan Effect to being one part Tom Clancy novel, one part graphic novel, and one part “oh hey, I forgot this was a rule book.” You get into reading Titan Effect and the writing style just sucks you in. At a 142 pages, this rule book. reads so easily that you are sure to finish it in one evening. 20/20 points

Mechanics 

My main concern with mechanics was seeing a strong influence from the Savage Worlds Super Power Companion. While the power creep from SWSPC still concerns me, most ttrpgs are heading this same direction (both 4e and 5e D&D, Pathfinder 2.0). While I can’t give the mechanics a perfect score, Titan Effect is solidly built and stems from a stable system. When it comes to mechanics, anything with a 12/15 is a very solid, rounded game. The cohesion within Titan Effect and in relation to Savage Worlds is tough to beat.  14/15 points

Stand-alone-ability 

“Titan Effect almost stands alone. Almost.” Because Titan Effect runs on the Savage Worlds system, I decided to treat it more like a setting and less like a stand-alone game (a mistake I made with my initial review). Other than the base SW rules and the Savage Worlds Super Powers Companion, Titan Effect runs it’s own show.

Since my initial review, there have now been many new additions. We have some in-expensive missions, weapons/equipment cards, a soundtrack! The guys at Knight Errant Media have been busy churning out just about any resource you can think of to make your games complete.  15/15 Points

Originality 

I mentioned all the historical references, real-life military intelligence, and real-world folklore being spliced with a bio-mechanical/genetically-engineered humanoids (or simply evolved) X-men meets Ghost in the Shell flavor of a game during the beta. For a short, and I mean very short moment, I thought we would be seeing a flood of super powers, espionage, space operas and other sci-fi games hitting the market. But I didn’t.

The concept of blending all these different tropes together into one-coherent package AND interweave it into the very fabric of our historical DNA is amazing. What is more amazing is how seamlessly blended the team at Knight Errant Media brought this together.  19/20 points

Titan Effect Original Cover

Overall Score 

I tentatively gave Titan Effect an 83/100 if you were stuck picking it up on retail. I really regret scoring such an amazing game that low. Knight Errant Media gave me more of what I loved about the beta and doubled up (literally in page count and not just content) on what I wanted to see.

Titan Effect (unlike my last semester in school) phases in with a solid A 94/100 points.


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