RPGnow offers charity bundle.

Record monsoon rains caused flooding that left almost 2,000 people dead and 20 million homeless. Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani estimates crop losses at $3.3 billion, total damage of about $7 billion. People displaced by the flooding that began at the end of July are still living in temporary shelters, such as schools, or in tents. Doctors Without Borders continues to provide medical care, clean water, and relief materials.

Following the success of our previous fundraisers for DWB during the Haiti Earthquake Reponse we have decided to put together a new charity effort to raise funds for relief efforts in Pakistan. Several publishers have donated some very cool items to help us raise funds for Doctors Without Borders. The bundle will be available until 10:00 AM EST, Monday, October 25th.

Click here to donate $25.00 and receive over $700 in RPG titles

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These are some amazing deals, and all of the proceeds from your purchase of the bundles will be donated to DWB for Pakistan aid. Thanks to all the publishers and creators who have donated their creative works to these bundles!

Review: For Love or Power

http://www.rpgnow.com/product_reviews.php?products_id=84862

The below review is from the link listed above.

For Love or Power
Publisher: AGES Gaming
by Shane O'Connor [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 10/16/2010 11:28:44
Sometimes the hardest part of a role-playing game is simply playing a role. PCs, at least, have the entire campaign to work on who their character is and why he does what he does. The GM, on the other hand, usually doesn’t have quite so much to work with in their NPCs; all too often they’re little more than components of an adventure that fade into the background after the scenario ends (if they survive). This can make it awkward when a PC shows interest in the NPC – they haven’t been developed enough to make it clear what a relationship with them would be like.

Even beyond that, relationships are a tricky needle to thread. Should they be purely role-played, with no game rules used? It may seem that way, but dice checks can better simulate how someone would respond to an unknown factor (when even they’re not sure how they feel about something). It’s very tricky to design a system for this, and it’s not something that you’ll find for Pathfinder…until now, with AGES Gaming’s supplement, For Love or Power. Let’s take a look.

For Love or Power is a very short PDF supplement. Consisting of only seven pages, two of these are the covers, one is the OGL, and one is the credits and table of contents, leaving only three for actual game material. It’s actually slightly less than three, since a fraction of that third page is dedicated to “sponsors” – actually short blurbs advertizing two other AGES Gaming Pathfinder products.

There’s virtually no artwork here to speak of. The front and back covers do use some artwork templates to appear like stylized book covers, and the front does have a historical-looking picture of some sort of medieval get-together. That’s it as far as artwork goes; there’s nothing else pictorial in the book’s interior. Likewise, there are no bookmarks to be found either, though that’d be rather pointless in this book anyway.

For Love or Power (the title obviously referring to relationships/marriage) opens by talking about its basic assumptions for how relationships are handled in the game. This is a fairly standard list, noting things like “make sure everyone’s comfortable with the concept in game,” “keep the physical parts of the relationship off-screen,” and “this is for PC-to-NPC romance, not PC-to-PC.”

The next section of the book deals with how to introduce romance into the game. Like the preceding section, it’s fairly boilerplate in what it discusses, e.g. phasing important NPCs in so the PCs have opportunities to meet new romantic interests, keep in-game reminders that the PCs loved ones are also dynamic parts of their characters and the game world, etc. While there isn’t anything here that a good GM won’t have already taken into account if they’re trying to play up relationships in the game, I can’t condemn this section simply because it serves as a good reminder of the basics.

Following a brief notation on developing romance as part of the game world (e.g. romantic customs differ in different cultures), we finally come to the rules-based section of the product, cleverly titled “rules of engagement.”

The main thrust of these rules is a Diplomacy check, made monthly to advance the relationship. The base DC for this check is a static number, set by the NPC’s social level; it’s easier to woo a peasant than a duchess, for example. This isn’t a bad system, but it doesn’t seem to take into account the PC’s own social standing – shouldn’t a character that has been declared a knight of the realm have an easier time pursuing a relationship with a noblewoman than some commoner? I also thought that some of these terms could have used greater definition – what’s the difference between minor, medium, and major nobility, for example? Is a princess major nobility, or does this chart not take royalty into account? More could have been done here.

This mechanic is the core of the system, but there’s more to it than that. A table is given that allows a PC to research a character – this takes time, and gold (the higher the NPC’s station, the more gold), but on a successful research check, you get a free re-roll on your match check.

The match check is the subsequent table in the book, rolled on when you want to begin a relationship with someone, to see how compatible you are. A flat roll, it doesn’t have any modifiers to it (save for the aforementioned possible re-roll), and how good of a match you are is important, as it determines the duration of the relationship and a possible bonus or penalty to the Diplomacy DC.

It’s after this point that we’re told how that core Diplomacy check works. The PC makes the roll once per game month (they can choose not to roll, maintaining an equilibrium, but that increases the next month’s DC slightly), with each successful check counting off from the duration established by the match check. A failed check here can increase this duration, or even result in the NPC breaking things off, embarrassing the character.

Once the PC runs out the duration on the relationship, the NPC make it known that they want to be married; following this is a period of betrothal – this basically extends the relationship window further, and the PC makes more Diplomacy checks until this new duration expires, at which point the two characters are wed and this system concludes.

Following this is a final table that includes numerous modifiers to these monthly Diplomacy rolls. Some of these are permanent modifiers (e.g. a character has a high dowry, and so is more inclined to be distrustful of potential suitors), while others are one-time bonuses (e.g. you buy her a really expensive gift). Some of these are slightly odd…for example, if you two have the same alignment, there’s no modifier. If you’re one step apart in alignment, you get a bonus, as you’re similar but just different enough to be interesting to each other. If your alignments are further apart than that, there’s a penalty. It’s quirky, but not necessarily wrong.

Looking over this book, I’m of the impression that it’s a diamond in the rough. The low production values, and fairly standard set of assumptions and advice, mask a system that’s actually quite elegant, even if it could use some expansion. The relationship mechanics here present a stable framework for a much-needed set of mechanics in Pathfinder; this is a system that has great potential. It’s not without flaws – the social status-based Diplomacy check needs to take the PCs’ status into account, and the match check (and research check) could use an overhaul…but the ideas and rules work.

Whether you’re adding them for love of the game or to assert your power as the Game Master, For Love or Power brings a working set of relationship rules into your Pathfinder game.

4 of 5 stars.

AGES Gaming: For Love or Power

AGES Gaming has released a new supplement as listed below:

Want more romance? Need new challenges for your players? If so, you are in the right place!

For Love or Power is a seven page PDF that gives advice on how to add romance to your campaign. It has a detailed system for a PC/NPC interactions. It accounts for social station, personality, values, researching their mate and other romantic tactics.

If you want to spice things up, give For Love or Power a go!

http://www.rpgnow.com/product_info.php?products_id=84862

Another new product

The name of the PDF is Haunts and More.

Avoid Blind Man’s Alley! Don’t get caught in Gladiators' Coliseum!

Need more Haunts? Frustrated by limited examples? Haunts and More is a twelve page supplement provided eleven haunts for your PCs to encounter. It also introduces the idea of a stacked haunt. Why should one haunt have only one effect? Bonus Materials includes a pre-made undead hunting ranger with a new feat .

Made for the Pathfinder Role-playing Game. Get Haunts and More Today!

The link is http://www.rpgnow.com/product_info.php?products_id=84465

microsupplements

The name of the game is speed. Getting the products out there, taking up space in the new release section of ebook websites. In case you haven't been keeping up here, AGES Gaming is an PDF publisher of RPG supplements.

Microsupplements are 1-15 page supplements covering one to two topics. For instance, I just released two of them, Haunting Signals and Touch of Character.

Haunting Signals is an attempt to cover some ground that Pathfinder (Paizo Publishing) did not. Specifically, Haunts as an evolution rather than a semi-intelligent trap with a neat backstory. AKA having more classically haunted houses with Pathfinder/D&D mechanics. In addition, it also has detection spells that aren't an instant answer. It's an alternative to writing pages of advice for spells which give out an instant answer.

Touch of Character introduces NPCs (or possible PCs) that have an unique ability (feat, spell, item, etc.) in addition to the normal stat writeup and background information. The first issue has a peasant with an unusual talent and an aristocratic woman who knows a rarely used method of telling the future.

We have some more coming out..writing here means not writing them.
Bye for now.

Staying on top

In case you don't know, all new products at www.rpgnow.com and www.drivethrurpg.com get a moment in the sun aka the front page. Valuable real estate there. In fact, one successful strategy is to write short PDFs and release them as often as possible to keep your spot on the top. Kinda like king of the mountain. Who knew that a childhood game was a business strategy?:)

Continuing to work hard...

I dipped my toe into the Pathfinder RPG market. I just launched a new PDF on residual haunting called Haunted Signals. Available at www.rpgnow.com Also doing more projects, which I'll talk about in more length. Back to work...

skill comments for Infinite Futures

The ideas of skills isn't new to the RPG world. They demonstrate what the character knows and how well they know it. IF is no exception. If that's the case, what's so exciting about them? We updated Pathfinder skills to deal with the sci-fi genre. We had cover everything from space opera to hard sci-fi. The majority of the skills are going to look familiar but there are going to be some new skills and some have been modified to fit them into sci-fi. Knowledge skills, Computer, Engineering and Medical are some that immediately say Infinite Futures. They cover topics that Pathfinder wouldn't touch due to the nature of Fantasy vs. Sci-fi

Overall, far more added instead of simply removed. It was agonizing trying to decide what to cut since the skills fit so well into Pathfinder. However, we did it in a few cases. Wording was changed too. Sometimes, reading about skills can be a bit dry, no matter the system. We challenged the text and we think it's a bit easier to read through. Of course, it will be up to you to decide if that took place. Ask yourself one question, "What IF?" and then let that guide your decision to dive into the text and make IF your own.

brief updates

I have moved along in the process to sell to e23 and paizo. e23 had approved my sample submission and will send contracts out. I guess they are redoing them, so it will take a little bit.

Paizo needed me to make an account. I have done so, hoping to be able to upload files soon.