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30 Character Motivations $5.00
Average Rating:3.3 / 5
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30 Character Motivations
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30 Character Motivations
Publisher: Adamant Entertainment
by Thilo G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/06/2011 06:47:17
This pdf is 12 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page SRD, leaving 10 pages of new content, so let#s take a look at it.

We have all seen it in different media: Be it comics, cinema, books or even real life: Motivations that drive us to the point of being driven, principles that can and will not be broken by the respective people and, while constraining, also provide for a tremendous boost in capabilities at the same time, enabling them to endure and draw strength from their particular idiosyncrasies. This is made especially evident in moments where conflicting values between hero and villain or pro-and antagonist collide.
Why is it, then, that these iconic moments happen not too often in RPGs? First of all, there is a disconnection between players and PCs - the first reaction in many an otherwise great round will be to do what benefits the group in contrast to what the character might usually do. While some rpg-groups (Thanks for all the great years, fellows!) manage to transcend the benefits of the group for an "authentic" character reaction, it always leaves a shallow taste, even when XP-rewards are handed out later. There just is no immediate benefit for "driven" characters that adhere to a principle or flaw.

30 character motivations sets out to change that. Being portrayed as 15 pairs of opposable concepts, their mechanics are simple: When conflicted/confronted with a situation that goes against the motivation, a special check of d20+Int or Wis-mod is rolled against a DC set by the DM (guidelines are provided, basic DC is 15) - when successful, the PC can reign in his/her/its urges and act contrary to them. Otherwise the motivation has to be acted out, though not necessarily in self-destructive ways. From loyalty to lustfulness, honorable characters and cruelty - the range covered in the short space is quite interesting and offers something for just about anyone. Each motivation also comes with objects, i.e. concrete triggers: If your family has been slaughtered by goblinoids, you might have your lust for vengeance triggered in the face of these creatures.
Mechanically, the bonuses are not to be trifled with - they offer a higher power-gain than a feat (e.g. Brave: Immune to shaken and frightened conditions, +4 against fear and despair effects and reroll a fear/despair-related save once per day), thus a GM wishing to implement the rules should definitely make sure that situations come up that trigger the motivation to the detriment of the character in order to balance the benefits. On the other hand, the system facilitates e.g. playing characters like a smart fighter or a headstrong rogue.
We also get a new feat that gives you a bonus on the check to reign in the motivation.

Conclusion:
Layout is ok and adheres to the two-column standard. Editing is fine, too and the full-color artworks are also ok. The pdf is short, thus I won't detract a star from the rating due to the lack of bookmarks - at 10 pages the file is easily maneuverable. I should note that the sub-header of the book is "New Traits for Characters", which is kind of a misnomer - this system has nothing in common with the standard traits in PFRPG. That being said, to tackle the system on its own ground, it works, is concisely written and professionally presented. However, as always with systems like that, DM-and player-discretion is advised when using the system to prevent suicidal stunts and balance issues/too frequent character deaths. My only true points of criticism for the system are that a) the motivations and their benefits are not that balanced and that some grant significantly stronger bonuses than others. GM-discretion is advised; and b) we don't get more content - while 5 bucks is not expensive, it's at the upper range of the impulse-buy range. I hope that we'll see 30 more motivations in a future supplement - the concept does lend itself to expansion. My final verdict will thus be a straight 4 stars.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
30 Character Motivations
Publisher: Adamant Entertainment
by Dark M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/05/2011 17:19:38
30 Character Motivations by Adamant Entertainment

This product is 12 pages long. It starts with a cover. (1 pages)

Introduction (2 pages)
This explains what they are, how to use them and then gives two examples. It is suggested each character only be allowed a single motivation.

Motivations (8 pages)
Each motivation has a positive and negative version of them. Both version give the character bonuses to stuff, just different things. The ones included are as follows. There is also one new feat. Controlled, grants you a bonus to go against your motivation.
Honorable / Unscrupulous
Brave / Cowardly
Concerned / Apathetic
Accepting / Contemptuous
Chaste / Lustful
Forgiving / Vengeful
Compassionate / Cruel
Dutiful / Rebellious
Just / Partisan
Generous / Avaricious
Ambivalent / Envious
Amorous / Despising
Loyal / Treacherous
Modest / Proud
Honest / Deceitful

It ends with a OGL. (1 pages)

Closing thoughts. The layout and editing are ok, the artwork is color and fair. The pages have a gray jagged torn parchment look. Which looks nice but makes it less print friendly. As for the motivations for the most part they match pretty well to what you would expect. Some I disagreed with but all and all not bad. Let me say I like the idea of this product. Now with that said I did have a few issues. One the negatives are helpful too. I kinda would have rather them have more negative aspects to them. Also they are not really balanced I thought some of them was much stronger than some of the others. The weak ones I would say is worth a feat likely. The strongest though I would say is worth three feats. Such as one of them gives you a +2 luck bonus to all saves.

So I liked the idea but felt it needs some work and I would have liked to have seen it done slightly differently. Maybe for each positive motivation you had to take a negative one to counter balance it. I think that would have been better personally. All and all it's not but a bit pricey. So if the idea interest you it is worth picking up. So what's my rating? I am going to have to give it a 3 in the end. It is a neat idea and the RPing idea's it helps provide and character fleshing out I felt was worth half a 3 star.

Trust me, I'm a Succubus.

Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
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