Shadowrun Sixth World is the Sixth Edition, of a game published by Catalyst Game Labs.
Lets start with a little history for those who may have not heard of this game. Shadowrun was released in 1989 by FASA. I personally started playing this game with my friends the summer between Jr. High and High School and it was EPIC. This game more than any other game defined my High School experience, we played it almost every day. The small Campaign I started one Saturday night, inspired by Megadeth’s album “Rust in peace” grew into a 3 year long campaign that ended with only 3 original characters still standing and a good portion of Seattle left in ruins.
So moving on, the game itself is a dice pool system, so you will need plenty of D6’s, at a minimum 10 per player. and it fuses Fantasy and Cyberpunk together in the same world, that was the most drawing aspect of the game, I was always more into Sci-Fi but a large portion of my friends were into Fantasy, and this game allowed us to play together and have a blast doing it.
Enough of my history and experience with the first two editions, which I still own much of, even the Universal Brotherhood, Chummer. I Said I was going to review Catalyst’s Shadowrun Sixth World, and now I shale.
Gencon 2019 I stood in line for possible and hour, I didn’t care, because I was going to have my hands on the long awaited latest edition of Shadowrun. I don’t cant recall being so excited, other than my children being born. once i got into the booth, I splurged, I got the core rulebook, dice, chips, cards, the beginner box, I got every FUCKING thing with the Sixth World Shadowrun logo on it, with the exception of the leather dice bag and a t-shirt. I spent the next several weeks reading, re-reading, looking for YouTube videos to clarify what I was reading. At one point I thought maybe I was going mad, have I been playing Call of Cthulhu and the d20 systems so long now, that I could not comprehend the “Updated” and “Streamlined” rules of one of my favorite games. Now I understand I have only played 1st and 2nd editions and I know things change and games systems sometime change, but that wasn’t it.
Typos, oh my. I don’t know if they used an editor for this book, or if the one they had was illiterate. It seems to me that in the effort to “streamline” and keep the total page count to around 300, In an effort to bring in some new players to the game, they did not do a good job of the read throughs and editing. Much of the book give me the impression that the writers was assuming anyone playing this game would also have played the 4th and 5th editions, and didn’t feel the need to clarify much of the rules. it has a “they will know what I mean” kind of vibe.
So after I felt like I may have a grasp of the rules, I got 2 of my regular players who also have played the 3rd – 5th editions of Shadowrun, so that was a big help on understanding what some of the rules meant. and we spent 3-4 sessions each 2-3 hours long going through mock combat over and over, and It was on the last session we started to feel like we knew what we were doing and then COVID-19 hit. Since there is no support for online play of Shadowrun Sixth World, it hit the shelf and it sits there to this day, and as of now, I dont know if I will ever pick it up and give it another go. It’s just so clunky and has the worst editing and so many mistakes and the few supplements that came out the months after were no better, and not a single supplement that has more than just fluff in it. where is the street Samurai catalogs????
So the bottom line I do not recommend this edition, unless you are a glutton for punishment or maybe have played the previous 2 editions.