Radiance's official website which has a link to the free players guide is http://www.radiancerpg.com/.
Phase 1 - First Reading Evaluation
I've seen mention of using pygmy as a pejorative term. The author claims it is based on mythology. In day to day life, when speaking of the tribes that that term has been used, I would rather use their own terms like Aka, Baka, Mbuti, Twa, Bajaka, Bambenga, Batak, Aeta, Semang, and Tgapukau - tribal and local names - instead of the European term.
Phase II - My Criteria Evaluation
The biggest hit I gave it was for combat, because it only slightly modified the d20 system. For understandable rating, the book just front load dumps everything and doesn't explain everything until later. It's hard to imaging playing the game, when a wall of information dump is sent my way first - all these numbers and words that mean something. So I assume it was written for D&D or PF game players and game masters - where knowledge of one of those game is a prerequisite.
Magic is not explicit in the game. Rather it is blended with abilities, themes, and deities.
Once again. I could not find any gameplay public. I did find record of sessions both at d20 and scheduled at a game store.
Game makers: Play your game and show it! Write it or video record it. Or have someone else do it. Even a 1 encounter confrontation. 2 out of 3 games don't show any game play so far - Runequest being the exception where the maker has on a podcast a sample 2 encounter gameplay.
Reviews read or watched 3
Set of reviews from product pages 4
Gameplays read or watched 0
a. Meaningful - does data recorded makes a difference in the game?
b. Utilized Functions - are there multiple uses for data recorded?
2. Flexible/Adaptable - how usable is it with other custom settings?
3. Consistency - how many different systems are there within the game?
4. Understandable - are concepts defined before they are presented, Or is it just a rule dump without explanation?
5. Character - how is behavior explained and can characters be unique?
a. Behavior tied to character - how well does the data determine how a character behaves?
b. Unique Character - can the characters stand out from other characters of similar nature?
6. Combat System - are the mechanics interesting and innovative?
a. Turn/move/action - does the game use the same boring turn based mechanics?
b. Attack speed/ hastened/quicker - will having higher quickness make the attacks go faster and multiple times?
7. Spell System - does the game use the boring overused spell set?
a. Spell Regulatory - how does the game use data to limit magical powers?
b. Spell Breadth - is there a wide variety, yet coherently grouped collection of spells?
8. Creatures - how many provided creatures are available?
a. Standard Fantasy - does the game provide the expected common monsters and creatures?
b. Creation - are there creature creation rules so that I can add my own creatures?
9. Content - is the overall content presented in the core detail depth and have variety. Do elements differ in sufficient degree among other data?
10. Aesthetic - does the game have a subjective coolness factor?
I plan on using the A, B, C, D, and E again, this time tying them to points so I can convert it into a total value for the game.
For each criteria
A = 4 - beyond my expectation
B = 3 - great
C = 2 - sufficient
D = 1 - below my expectation
E = 0 - horrible, unusable
Total evaluation = sum of criteria/20
Phase III Testing the game.
1) total grade from phase 2 2.55
2) character creation test 2 (it would have been a 3)
3) skill system test 3
4) combat system test 1
5) magic system test 2
Total score 10.55 (it would have been 11.55)
Average 4 pt scale 2.11 (it would have been a 2.31)
I studied Pathfinder PRD for one hour before making a character. I studied how abilities, skills, feats, and magic fit together which is different than most of the games that I have studied so far. Certainly the Radiance differs in some great ways from PRD, but only in minor ways when comparing Heroquest, Dungeon World, Hackmaster, Rolemaster Unified, and even Unchained Heroes to Radiance. Then I could create a character knowing an overview of d20 systems. Because I did so, I docked 1 point from character creation immediately.
Character creation took just under 2 hours, after the one hour PRD study - 3 hours all together.
The skill system was extremely easy once a spreadsheet of my character had tallied up the bonuses. I tried several skills at different difficulty. Very nice!
Combat system .... I'll just pass on that. I only had Ergo the robot who began kicking my ass after one round where I damaged it for 2 vitality damage.
The magic system is interesting with the intertwined abilities, heroic and magical powers. Themes expand the system. Alignment is a nice form of divine intervention. The magic items are really good. I also like the vitality based power system. I do wish for some general magic used by everyone, but I guess that's what the magical items are for in this game.