HKAT!2: Hong Kong Action Theatre! 2nd Edition
HKAT!2: Hong Kong Action Theatre! 2nd Edition
HKAT!2: Hong Kong Action Theatre! 2nd Edition
5 2
Price: $22.01 FREE for Members
Type: eBook
Publisher: Guardians of Order
Page Count: 194
Format: pdf
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1894525256
ISBN-13: 9781894525251
User Rating: 5.0000 out of 5 Stars! (2 Votes)

HKAT!2: Hong Kong Action Theatre! 2nd Edition ebook


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With action stars like Jackie Chan, Jet Li, Michelle Yeoh, and Chow Yun Fat heating up the silver screen, Hong Kong cinema is at the height of its popularity. Now is the perfect time for the new and improved second edition of the critically acclaimed Hong Kong Action Theatre! HKAT! 2nd Edition improves upon the game that put fast-paced, high-flying, over-the-top action role-playing on the map. As part of Guardians Of Order`s new Tri-Stat Compatible line, this game features all new artwork, an improved and expanded resource material on Hong Kong and the film industry, and fast-paced action resolution. Come and enter the adrenaline-charged role-playing game of Hong Kong action movies!

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| 5 out of 5 Stars!


Hong Kong Action Theatre! 2nd Edition is a game based on Chinese action films such as Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and The Killer. It attempts to accurately portray the style of these films and tries to cover all the genres: kung fu, wire fu, gunplay, and so on.

Players portray actors in Hong Kong cinema. Characters are created using Guardians of Order's simple Tri-Stat system, rounding out the character with skills like gun combat and kung fu and special attributes to set the actor apart like Director's Friend or Cantopop Star.

The actor is the character that players will be portraying every single game. Their abilities and attributes will remain stable. However, the character's Role changes from one session to the next.

Each session is a movie, and the Role is the actor's part in the movie. A Role can be anything from Triad Assassin to Hard-Boiled Cop to Drunken Fisherman. Each Role has unique abilities that stack on top of your actor's for that specific session.

Another interesting quirk of the game is Stunts. During combat, players are encouraged to have their characters do the wild and death-defying stunts of Hong Kong cinema. The wilder and more dangerous the stunt, the better the reward. Characters are rewarded by the gamemaster with Star Power points which represent the Actor's pull in the cinema world and his or her popularity with the audience. These can be cashed in for rerolls and other goodies such as script rewrites (e.g. the villain happens to be standing next to barrels of flammable liquid).

The game also contains a lot of "real-world" information on Hong Kong and the history of Hong Kong cinema that some might find interesting and others might find to be a waste of space in a roleplaying game book.

The game is great. With an energetic group with a feel for the Hong Kong action genre, you can make movies to rival Hong Kong blockbusters. In some respects, I feel that HKAT lumps too many of the genres together with no demarcation between gun fu, kung fu, and wire fu films, and so they all get smushed together. In general, it's fun, original, creative game and a worthy second edition to the original by Gareth Michael-Skarka.

Gameplay is episodic, with each game session being a "movie" independent of other game sessions. The movies can cover any of the traditional Hong Kong action film genres.

| 5 out of 5 Stars!


This is a solid system for a Kung Fu movie action game. This is made by Guardians of Order, so it uses the Tri-Stat System (if you've played BESM, this will be very familiar). The basic system is based on three stats: body, mind, and soul. You use these base stats to calculate your health, energy, starting star power, and attack and defense values. You then buy attributes and defects that customize your character. HKAT! 2 offers a wide variety of attributes and defects that allow you to build any kind of character. And if the attribute or defect you need doesn't exist, you can make a new one! (The GM, of course has say on what is allowed.) HKAT! 2 has the unique concept that the PCs (Player Characters) are actors playing roles in movies. When you make your character you make an actor, and can only buy an attributes and defects that are open or actor only. Then you use star power to bid on the role you want to play. Now you buy role attributes and defects to add to your character to simulate the special effects crews and such (the role attributes and defects go away at the end of a movie), and you can use leftover star power to improve the role too. What's cool about the role/actor concept is that your group can play a wide variety of games, say a horror action thriller one time, then a waxia (as in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) next. Also using star power, one person can have the lead role one movie, and some else can outbid him for the lead next time, so everyone gets a chance to be at the center of a game. At the end of a movie, the GM hands out star power rewards you use on the next movie. What you get is based on what you bid as well as how well everyone did and bonuses the GM may hand out. This encourages everyone to work as a group, as if the group "wins" the movie, everyone will get more star power. Another good point is that if you die, it's not necessarily bad, because it's only your role that dies, not your actor, and if you die heroically, this can be worth bonus star power!
Make no mistake, this is a Role-playing game, with emphasis on role-playing rather than dice roles and statistics and rules. While creation is a little involved, it's fairly straightforward one you get use to it. For resolving actions the Tri-Stat system offers one of the simplest systems I've seen.
Combat is also petty simple, I won't go into the details here, if you've played other tri-stat games, you'll be on familiar turf. HKAT! 2 does, however offer some optional combat rules that are worth mention. When you attack, you can choose whether to deliver a high, low, or medium kick or punch and you can target an opponent high, low or torso. The type of blow you deliver gives a bonus or penalty to your damage and initiative, for example, a light punch will let you attack sooner, but won't do as much damage as a hard kick. The attack location affects your opponent's defense, if you attack low, but you opponent defends high, your opponent will have a harder time defending.
The system, in summary is simple, yet flexible enough to handle any thing from swordplay and magic attacks in ancient China to a fierce shootout in modern Hong Kong.
And finally, I'll cover the quality of the book. As is typical of Guardians of Order, this is a well-done book. It's a good read with cool art and it is very clear. There is also a lot of extra martial here besides just the game. There is a section on Hong Kong, one on the history of Hong Kong film, one with summaries on a lot of Hong Kong films, and finally some sample adventures to get you started. The extra info is really great, especially for some like me who only has little knowledge on Hong Kong film; this book is a treasure trove of info for creating you own Hong Kong action film game. The only flaw I saw in this book is that the last line in some of the sidebars at the beginning of the book was truncated, and while this is annoying, no impotent information was lost (it was mostly flavor text) and this flaw doesn't greatly detract from enjoyment. Given how error riddled other role-playing games (just look at the errata on 3rd edition D&D) are, I couldn't justify taking off a point for this. I highly recommend this book if you want a simple and flexible system for an action Hong Kong style game.

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