Continuing on with the theme of games involving the age of Chivalry and heroism, our next entry is Chivalry and Sorcery 5th Edition from Brittania Game Designs.
The first thing that struck the judges was the size of the book. Easily the largest single book to be entered, C&S runs to near 600 pages of content in a book that weighs as much as almost any two of the other entries.
The question becomes whether the volume of content is required to run the game and if it remains constant throughout the book.
Artwork is plentiful, but when you’re dealing with a book that spans as many pages as this does, it’s easy to think that there’s not enough artwork, particularly when you have several pages of text and tables at a time. The art present is on point and relevant to the sections in question, but it is possible to feel daunted by the amount of text presented.
However, that brings us to the point where C&S excels, and that is in the breadth of rules and information presented for use by the GM and players. There are literally rules for every part of the game, if you weren’t sure about anything in particular, you can find a rule for it, or a rule that would cover the doing of it. The detail for the characters and setting is massive, as shown by a character sheet that spans several pages.
It is here that C&S makes the grade, if you’re looking for a game to play quickly over a single session, this is not it. This is a game that rewards those willing to put time and effort into it, you won’t get straight into things in the way games like Dead of Night would do, but when you get going, the effort that you’ve put in will be well rewarded.
Comparisons will inevitably be drawn to Paladin and Romance of the Perilous Land, impossible for there not to be. C&S has by far the most complete of the rules sets, as befits it being the most recent remake of a game that has been around for a very long time. The question the judges asked was whether or not having absolutely everything that you’re ever going to need in a single book was the right way to go, or if the sheer size of the book made people think twice.
Either way, it’s a quality product, production values are good, the book is full colour throughout, and it holds to an accurate view of the world in those times, rather than the Camelot of the heart, where knights were good and bold, and evil lurked in swamps.
As with Romance, there isn’t an opening adventure, and the Judges felt that a book this size would have benefited from something at the back to get the characters straight into the action, particularly with everything else that’s been put in.