No fan of horror gaming should be without this book! Kevin Crawford made Sine Nomine a stand-out publisher with the release of Stars Without Number (SWN)...simple sic-fi rules with old-school charm. Other Dust (OD) continued the evolution of the system with all the gritty and weird post-apocalyptic rules built into the system. Silent Legions continues to build on this great rules system. If you have enjoyed SWN or OD, you will almost certainly like this system as well…and they are all truly compatible, just plug or pull what you want in your game.
Silent Legions has four investigative character classes with built-in backgrounds and character creation is a simple 15 minute exercise, which is good because characters are as expendable in this horror environment as you might imagine. The skill system, identical in operation with SWN and OD, is simple and elegant, and balances character ability with character level. Combat uses the familiar d20 mechanic that has been successfully modified for SWN and OD. The addition of a "Slaughter" dice thrown with your standard damage roll makes combat unpredictable and terrifying. Finally, the magic system is great, with psychic talents, Grey Magic, and a truly wicked version of the Black Arts. Everybody better beware. I ain't Kiddin!
However, the real value of Sine Nomine's products comes from the fantastic sandbox resources they provide to gamers. Silent Legions is no exception. For any fan of horror gaming, the Mythos, Alien, and Cult generators are worth a great deal more than the coast of the product. The sandbox is where Sine Nomine always rewards its gamers. These resources make a Gm's life easier, and keeps the setting fresh for the PCs. And the "tags" are so portable from system to system. The tags that make a location scary or a cult freaky in Silent Legions will do the same in SWN, CoC, or Pathfinder.
If i had a single complaint, it would be with respect to the fear and sanity system. As I interpret the rules, every character has 90 or 100 sanity points, with no respect to wisdom, intelligence, or the lack thereof. And sanity points are lost quickly, only to be regained in dribbles with level increases or taking 'deliriums'...phobias that can make a character pretty quirky, AKA fun to play. Fear and shock don't seem to have short-term effects. If you consider these shortcomings, they are easily fixed with simple house rules that can be imported from plenty of other systems. Regardless, the dark and brooding setting is likely to accomplish anything the rules don't.
Don't pass on this title, it is well written, well organized, and valuable far beyond the the CoC genre.
[5 of 5 Stars!]