Savage Daddy's Heist Companion - Savage Fan Creation Review

As with the rest of the blog, the Savage Fan Creation Review series fell really behind the schedule. In an effort to keep this blog running I am also reviving the fan review series. I am starting with an old request for a long overdue review of Savage Daddy's Heist Companion. Written by +Jerrod "Savage Daddy" Gunning  (of Savage Worlds GM Hangout and Sin City Savages fame), the Heist Companion gives advice and options for running a heist centered game. Let's see what's inside...
In 23 pages, the Heist Companion gives you all the rules needed to run a heist game using Savage Worlds system. Inside you'll find new Archetypes, Edges, Hindrances and heist oriented setting rules. The document doesn't delve  into fluff, as "heist" as a genre is pretty much self explanatory and I would assume that anyone wanting to run a heist game is familiar with the formula. This "lack of setting" also makes the companion pretty genre neutral. The rules can easily be incorporated in anything from modern, through cyberpunk to sci-fi genres. It can even be applied to fantasy with a little tweaking.

The main aim of the supplement is to give both, the players and the GM, solid tools to run a one-shot in the vain of heist movies like Ocean’s Eleven, The Sting, etc. You can technically incorporate the rules into a non-heist campaign, but you would need to skip few rules. You start the game the same way any heist starts, by...

Getting the team together

First, you create your characters. As with any high stakes heist, each character has a specific skillset that fills a niche in the team. Those niches are covered by Archetypes (first introduced in Streets of Bedlam) and let you be the Mastermind, the Face etc. Those archetypes are also connected to the new Edges. Only certain archetypes can purchase certain Edges. All of those are pretty powerful and make each character useful in a different way during the heist. All the new Edges and Hindrances are really fitting the genre and some of them interact with the new mechanics of the heist itself.
After the players have created their characters, they can recruit some NPCs to aid them in the heist by filling the remaining archetypes or just doubling some up for good mes sure. The recruiting process has its own risk/reward attached to it, as failed recruiting attempts make the heist a little more difficult. Once you have your team, you...

Prepare and run the heist

This is where the bulk of the new mechanics live. You get some random heist generator and time to do the "planning phase" of the job. New mechanics like Heist Bennies and Exploit Cards are used and it all ends in an aftermath where you find out how well the job has gone. I would advise you check the file yourself, as I think that me summarizing the rules would only confuse you. I have to admit, everything after the character generation portion of the companion is a pretty dense read. Those rules do a great job at emulating the genre, but you need to re-read them here and there, as they pack a lot of new information into few pages. I am a big fan of both heist genre and new mechanics, but even I think the document could use some extra examples for clarity. For someone who just started with Savage Worlds, running heists or both the supplement can feel overbearing. Nevertheless, it helps you change the usually action oriented Savage Worlds into full on heist.

Overall, it is a good example on how to expand the Savage Worlds ruleset to accommodate a different playstyle. The companion has no art and sports a basic, but clear graphic design overall. A few tweaks here and there would make it an amazing resource for running heists.

Disclaimer: I couldn't find the Heist Companion hosted anywhere. I have shared the copy I have received from Jerrod via email.

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