member, 518 posts
 P:5 T:7 W:0 F:0 B:3
Thu 4 Jan 2018
at 12:42
Unmasked for cypher system
Bought it yesterday like what I've read just wondering if others have it yet and what you think of it
Isida KepTukari
 member, 182 posts
 Elegant! Arrogant! Smart!
Fri 5 Jan 2018
at 17:06
Unmasked for cypher system
Had it for a couple of weeks (backed the Kickstarter last year) and read it through.  Generally I like it - I was born in 1980, so while I obviously wasn't a teen during 1986, I still retain an awareness of some of the culture.  I do very much like the guide for what things were popular or common during that year, as I wasn't old enough to appreciate a lot of it for several more years.  The reminders about what communication and surveillance tools are available are very much appreciated.

The flavor of Unmasked reminds me of Stranger Things, Runaways, or Buffy the Vampire Slayer - these teens might have some phenomenal cosmic power (or knowledge), but they still need to pass their classes, deal with bullies, and figure out who to ask to the Homecoming dance.

I also like how they described building your Mask persona, including the sorts of strange backgrounds and power quirks that would be expected.  There's a large amount of leeway, and it gives you a lot of room to explore different corners of your Teen's mind.

I do think this game will require some managing of expectations.  In Predation, Gods of the Fall, Numenera, or The Strange, your characters have extraordinary power and will likely be using a lot of it during the course of the game.  With the Masks' insistence on secrecy, and the need to avoid cameras, witnesses, or video recorders, bringing out your Mask will happen much less often.  I could conceivably see many sessions in a campaign where the Mask personas are not brought out at all.  And because the Teen doesn't go up in tier like the Mask does, and doesn't really gain additional skills, the players have to face the vast majority of the problems thrown at them with half or quarter-powered characters compared to other Cypher System worlds.

This doesn't have to be a bad thing.  But if someone was expecting a superhero romp and then realized they would spend several sessions playing a teenager who was just trying to make her big break in the high school musical despite the interference from the popular kids, that's going to be an adjustment.