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101 New Skill Uses (PFRPG) $5.99
Average Rating:4.4 / 5
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101 New Skill Uses (PFRPG)
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101 New Skill Uses (PFRPG)
Publisher: Rite Publishing
by Nick S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/06/2014 16:31:19
101 New Skill uses is a bit of a grab bag between new skill uses and just putting a challenge number to certain uses of skills. As ever with skills I found the more mechanical skills to mostly good solid rules, but I found many soft skills such as intimidate to really just clutter up role playing but that is a personal preference.

I most enjoyed skills like acrobatic where the the book offers a robust suite of acrobatic maneuvers for use in an out of combat to really help give characters whom invest heavily into these skills a wide range of options and help set apart skillful characters from rank amateurs. While some uses for skills, like say pole vaulting, are not exactly ground breaking out of the box examples of how to use the skills, the rules offered here are fairly balanced if your group feels they need a rule for such. That said I think most GMs would rather just apply an on the spot DC check than scramble through books to actually look up a rule for something as simple as pole vaulting which leads into my single major complaint with the book.

The one big problem I have with 101 new skill uses is I feel some sections, such as with sense motive mostly give options that if regularly applied would bog down game play with constant skill checks, such a trying to predict your opponents moves round after round. I somewhat wish Rite's Publishing had went down the 3.5 path of including skill tricks players can acquire as those sometimes operated like mini-feats allow you to benefit from your high skill without the need for constant skill checks. I think that would have also helped weed out some of the lesser entries on this list.

Still as it stand 101 New Skill Uses mostly delivers on its premise and a solid buy in spite of its shortcomings, though I think it is slightly expensive for what it offers.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Publisher Reply:
I wanted to thank Nick S. for taking the time to do a review of our product. Steven D. Russell Rite Publishing
101 New Skill Uses (PFRPG)
Publisher: Rite Publishing
by Jared R. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/04/2012 15:45:56
First off, let me say that I generally enjoy Rite Publishing's material. Even this product has some really good ideas, and its a good concept. I think that skills could use some more options as well. Unfortunately, while some new options really are new options, some are just begging to be abused, and others really should be feats when you look at the overall design paradigm of Pathfinder.

Among the good ideas? Guidelines on bribes based on level, and what kind of information you could get from an autopsy. Great, these are things not currently addressed. Exactly what I'm looking for.

Then some things get clunky. Skill uses that require you to have a minimum number of ranks in other skills seem especially cumbersome. It's not that there isn't a certain logic to it, but at the same time, it complicated and doesn't resemble other rules in the game regarding skills.

Then we get into using diplomacy for calling for a truce, and other skill uses that allow for a very specific use of the skill. Too many players already get hung up on forcing NPCs to do something with social skills, and skill uses like this just encourage "diplomacy as a charm spell" gaming.

Then there are skill uses that allow PCs to ignore difficult terrain (already done with other mechanics that aren't just higher DCs, and kind of messes with people that took those options), and skill uses that allow for shutting down or reprogramming constructs (definitely something I'd require a feat CHAIN for, not just a really high DC).

I really wanted to like this product, and there are some good ideas in this, but it would take too much "this is in, that is out" GM editing, and would open up too many questions compared to just not using the product outright. Here's to more skill uses that are brand new ideas and not just ways to circumvent existing rules with high skill DCs.

Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
101 New Skill Uses (PFRPG)
Publisher: Rite Publishing
by Aaron H. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/08/2011 21:42:38
101 New Skill Uses takes the skills listed on the standard Pathfinder character sheet and makes them more useful and versatile for the Player and Game Master alike. The concept of developing new uses for skills is not new, but it still has merit. This 24 page book is full of rules crunch. This supplement addresses skills alphabetically from “Acrobatics” to “Use Magical Device.” Each of the skills addressed has at least one new or alternative use with a few having around 13. When introducing a book like this, it is important that the GM gets a chance to look over the new uses before a session. Some of the new of the alternative uses of skills replicate feats from the 3.5 ed.

OVERALL

101 New Skill Uses falls into the extra crunchy category when it comes to Mechanics, but below those mechanics are some interesting and innovative role playing uses for skills, that most players and GMs haven’t thought about or were forced to MSU (Make Stuff Up) because there were no written rules to support using your stealth score to hide above a door.

Publication Quality: 6 out of 10
The page borders look great and there is some good art in this book. The cover art looks like a screen shot from a video game and betrays the quality of the information inside of this book. Mr. Mcdevitts’s drawings look much better in black and white. In fact, all of the interior art should have stuck with black and white. Some of the art looked computer generated and there was no sense of cohesion. The print was easy to read and the charts were well placed in the text.

Mechanics: 10 out of 10
This book is focused on mechanics, but in the process, it can enable some outstanding role playing opportunities. Some of these “new” skill uses can negate the needs for some feats players may have taken and their use could cause some balance issues if all of the players at the table do not have access to them. Each new skill use is well thought out and well written. By placing the skill entries in alphabetical order, they are easy to find.

Value Add: 8 out of 10
This rating can increase or decrease depending on the players and the GM. If the GM is opposed to these new skill uses, then this book slides to a 6 or 7. Even if a GM will only allow a few of these new uses for skills, the ideas in this book are great adventure seeds or plot hooks. The Le Parkour use of the Acrobatics feat is a great inspiration for a citywide chase that has a cinematic feel to it. The new uses for many of these skills will allow players to fill in some of the functions that might normally be outside of their class or normal skill set.

Overall: 8 out of 10
Don’t judge this book by its cover! Not all of the “new” uses for skills were new, but they were all well written and well converted to the Pathfinder rules system. This book is a great resource for players and GMs alike. The 24 page length is enough to contain some outstanding information without overloading the reader. This book should be introduced carefully and in such a way as to give the GM and the gaming group time to adjust to some of the new mechanics. A cheat sheet with the rolling mechanics for each of the new skill uses would be a welcome page 25. This book is worth the price of admission and if used properly, it will add fun to your Pathfinder experience.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
101 New Skill Uses (PFRPG)
Publisher: Rite Publishing
by Dark M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/20/2011 11:36:45
101 New Skill Uses by Rite Publishing

This product is 24 pages long. It starts with a cover and credits. (2 page)

101 New Skill uses (18 pages)
This section has a list of skills with new uses for them. Below is a list of the skills with new uses.
Acrobatics – 9 new skill uses. Including Kipup (go from prone to standing quickly) and Le Parkour (if you don't know what this is google it, it's neat)
Appraise – 2 new skill uses, including determine bribe.
Bluff – 5 new skill uses including feign death.
Climb – 7 new skill uses including Brachiation(swinging on vines as a way to move) and Slide (descending rapidly in a controlled slide)
Craft Alchemy – 1 new skill use.
Craft – 2 new skills that can be used with any craft skill.
Diplomacy – 8 new skills including Calm Emotions and Seduction. (both are self explanatory)
Disable Device – 9 new skills including Enable Device (reactivating a trap) and Fast Disable.
Disguise – 2 new skills including Blend In.
Escape Artist – 2 new skill uses.
Fly – 1 new skill uses.
Handle Animal – 5 new skills including Throw Rider (by spooking a animal can make them throw their rider).
Heal – 3 new skills including autopsy.
Intimidate – 3 new skill uses including torture.
Knowledge – 2 new skills for any knowledge skill including Assist Research.
Knowledge Architecture/Engineering - 2 new skill uses.
Linguistics – 2 new skill uses including Intuit Language (reading someones body language)
Perception – 2 new skill uses including Read Lips.
Perform – 1 new skill use.
Ride – 3 new skill uses including Dismounting Charge (you dismount quickly during a charge and finish the charge on foot)
Sense Motive – 5 new skill uses including Predict Action (you learn what their next planned action is)
Sleight of Hand – 4 new skill uses including Plant Item (you slip a item in their pocket)
Spellcraft – 2 new skill uses including Analyze Magical Trap.
Stealth – 2 new skill uses including Tail (follow someone with out being noticed)
Survival – 12 new skill uses including Cover Tracks (hide your tracks) and Determine Distance(you can judge how far about things are when you can see both objects)
Swim – 2 new skill uses including Cliff Diving.
Use Magic Device – 4 new skill uses including Use Construct.

It ends with a OGL and ads. (4 page)

Closing thoughts. The art work is a mix of Black and White and color, it ranges from meh to pretty good. Layout and editing are good I didn't notice any errors. While I don't agree with all the skill uses I do like the vast majority of them. They add to the game while not adding to the complexity or introducing any new mechanic to the game. Both are a big plus when wanting to add interesting options to the game quickly. Really I have nothing negative to say about this product beyond I wasn't sold on all the new skill uses but I am sure others will like the ones I wasn't fond of and vise versa. So what's my rating? Well not find a flaw to speak of I am giving this one a 5 star review. It is just a well done and very easy to use product that can add a lot to a existing game.

Trust me, I'm a Succubus.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
101 New Skill Uses (PFRPG)
Publisher: Rite Publishing
by Thilo G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/13/2011 07:25:12
This pdf is 24 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page SRD and 2 pages of advertisements, leaving 19 pages of content, so let's check out these new skill uses, shall we?

We've all seen it in the 3.5-days of old, in the bad days - the feat-flood. Metric tons of feats to enable you to do the most menial tasks in about 3000 different ways. I'm glad those days are over, seriously. Feats are a very precious resource and should enable one to gain benefits that surpass very specific conditions for special attacks. As is the development now, though, PFRPG already sports a number of feats that, while nowhere near as broken as the 3.5-days of old, goes beyond necessity. The amount of options available for characters is staggering, but the availability of said options via feats is still limited, necessitating house-rules in e.g. instances when your daring swashbuckler is dueling a monk on a tight rope. Now there is a resource all characters have that has been largely untapped by expansions: Skills.

This is where this pdf comes in - skills get additional, expanded uses and thus become vastly more important and useful to the PCs without breaking the game. Or at least that's the design goal. But can it hold up to said lofty ideal? To answer this question, I'll have to examine some skills to give you examples on how these expanded skill checks are handled: Acrobatics, for example, now for example lets you use parcours to cross difficult terrain, making a rope on which you stand swing, instantly get back up etc. But actions like forging coins, duplicating keys, jumping from a horse's saddle to deliver a devastating charge, hit foes with them not immediately noticing it, make autopsies and malpractice via heal (and bluff) etc. The sheer amount of new possible options is quite impressive.

I did mention malpractice and the design of the new skill uses is something this one illustrates nicely - some skill uses require special additional requirements (like bluff to conceal your malpractice from other persons with the heal or sense motive skills) and more importantly, several THANKFULLY have scaling consequences for failure, from triggering traps to blowing cover to landing painfully on your back after a failed kip-up-attempt, the new skill-uses simply rock and provide a neat variety and excitement to your game - just imagine the excitement of climbing big foes and hacking at them while they try to smash you down or the nerve-wracking contest of aforementioned duelists over the gaping abyss below, their rope swinging ever more precariously. Even if you want to limit a special skill-use, just add Min x ranks and there we go, some uses become "Expert"-uses - the design allows for such an easy modification and thus lends itself to maximum customizability.

Conclusion:
Editing and formatting are top-notch, I didn't notice any glitches. Layout adheres to the 2-column full-color standard and the pdf comes with bookmarks. The artworks are ok, though nothing to write home about.
I have to get this out of my system: Every Pathfinder-group should own this book.

No exceptions.

There's simply no way around it, this pdf is one of those rare, humble books that via great design and without adding complex mechanics makes the game much more fun. The content is so easy to implement that no one should be stupefied by the new skill uses. Characters don't have to be changed to make use of the content of this pdf. In fact, the new skill uses open up whole revenues of new character options and adventure writing, making any campaign it is introduced to more rewarding. This humble pdf BLEW ME AWAY. Many skill uses I had house-ruled until now finally get cool, concise and balanced rules and some aspects are introduced via the skills that plainly feel awesome to me. My players will LOVE doing autopsies. Malpractice makes for extremely exciting social encounters. Forging coins and duplicating keys opens new revenues for investigations and plots - this pdf is simply a goldmine of ideas and crunchy goodness. This is one of the pdfs that will most definitely feature on my top ten of 2011-list. Near the top. Steven D. Russell delivers a STELLAR pdf, perhaps the best of the 101-series yet.

If you want to expand your players' options without forcing them to spend feats, go buy this. If you are stumped with regards to writing adventures and would like to add some new options, go buy this. If you're just curious, again, go buy this. If you're tired of house-ruling fast disable, sabotaging magic items, fast climbing etc., go buy this. In fact, even when none of these apply, go buy this. This is simply a gem and a stellar, stellar example of the best 3pps offer to the game. When eventually PFRPG's next edition comes along, it's this content I'd like to see adapted to be part of the core-rules. It's that good.

My final verdict will be 5 stars and the Endzeitgeist seal of approval. What are you waiting for? This is what you've been looking for, even if you didn't know yet.

Endzeitgeist out.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
101 New Skill Uses (PFRPG)
Publisher: Rite Publishing
by Robert W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/05/2011 23:54:10
Despite its small size, this book is a great source of new material that can strengthen a Pathfinder campaign in many ways. Both players and DMs will find use in these mechanics.

Many of the skill uses are fairly obvious, but the designers did a great job adding depth to those ones. Kip up, the ability to stand up from prone quickly, is given an elegant treatment.

Many of the skills are especially useful for non-casters like the Fighter or Rogue. The treatments given to skills like Acrobatics, Climb, and Survival can sometimes tilt the balance, or at least lead characters to make interesting use of the terrain. While these skill uses will not close the gap between martial and caster classes, it does give non-casters more options, some of which are circumstantial, but very useful circumstantially (like the ability to temporarily curse a magic item through mundane means).

Of course, anybody can make use of these skills. Bards, clerics, wizards. Some classes might invest in skills they never considered after seeing the applications of new skill uses.

Some of the skill uses can add a lot of flavor to a game session. Use Heal to perform an autopsy or cover up a murder disguised as First Aid. Use Diplomacy to call for a cease fire or talk some sense into an opponent who has no cause to fight you.

Most, if not all, of the skill uses have consequences for failure. And where the skills are powerful, failure on those skill uses often have perilous consequences.

Some of the mechanics' phrasing is slightly awkward and several of the systems use a different mechanic than I would prefer. However, the mechanics are still suitable and a DM could intuit a more preferable system without changing the substance of the mechanic. Also, a small amount of the material does step on the toes of feats and class features, but they usually tread softly.

The book is well-formatted, searchable, and pretty. It suffers slightly for sometimes not separating its paragraphs well and it could have subdivided its bookmarks into individual skill uses. The artwork is good and varied, but not exceptional. Also, the artwork is meant to be illustrative of uses, but does not match remarkably well.

Because these skill uses are independent of each other, DMs can pick and choose what they want to allow in their campaigns. Wise choices can influence the overall feel of a campaign as players explore those options. However, almost all of the skills seem balanced, so there should not be much fuss about letting in the entire book. Of all the selections, I found only one (using Spellcraft to learn basically everything about a spellcaster) to be worrisome. A few, like that, stretch credibility for being mundane skills, but they are limited easily enough if a DM does not want to allow them - and they make great additions if you have an Epic Fantasy campaign.

The book's price tag, $5.99, is hefty for a 19-page book, even one as crunchy as this.

If you have the money to burn, this book is a good buy. It provides many interesting and useful new uses for skills, which can add a lot of fun, flavor, and feel to your Pathfinder campaign.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
101 New Skill Uses (PFRPG)
Publisher: Rite Publishing
by Dawn F. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/01/2011 23:36:56
Skills are a very useful feature of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, one that is often overlooked for splashier spells and feats. While not all of these 101 new skill uses will be useful for my own campaign and some of them I have already conceived on my own, I find many that hadn’t occurred to me. Many are useful as suggestions on how to extend the core skills further. Players are always trying to do more with the skills anyway, at least mine are. This book gives the game master many really good ideas. I already found one in the free sample that I already copied and sent to one of my players. It was perfect for his PC. I am certain that more will appear equally useful for my other players. These new skills offer a great deal of potential for many styles of gaming.

As with most of these suggestions, I recommend adding minimum ranks a PC must have in a particular skill prior to being able to perform the specific actions listed. That is really the only thing I see missing in this otherwise excellent supplement. I am not going to judge balance issues with each new skill use, that is subjective for the most part and easily resolved by setting prerequisite minimum ranks in a particular skill prior to allowing the PC to attempt it. I had considered dinging my rating for this lack. But then I realized something, this is very personal for each game master and the style of their campaign differs greatly. How much or how little the GM in question wants to emphasis pre-requisites in skill level is a decision best left to them.

This book was a surprisingly interesting read and gave me some ideas for skill usages I intend to use as certain NPC antics. It is also fully bookmarked per skill, which is extremely useful despite the smallish size of this pdf. There is a wealth of excellent ideas and added support for game masters when players attempt crazy maneuvers. I can’t recommend this supplement enough. For the price you will gain many useful ideas for your own campaign and players, even if you don’t use them all. This is worth four and a half five stars which I am rounding up to a full five for excellent layout typical of Rite Publishing’s products.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
101 New Skill Uses (PFRPG)
Publisher: Rite Publishing
by Shane O. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 10/01/2011 19:44:43
I’ve been waiting for this book for a very long time. Skills are one of the most underutilized parts of a character, often being ignored entirely save for the occasional Perception check to notice a clue or spot an ambush. Yet there’s much more that skills can offer a character, and with Rite Publishing’s 101 New Skill Uses, that list just became much longer.

The one hundred and one new skill uses are distributed across the existing skills of the Pathfinder RPG; no new skills are presented. This was a wise decision, since introducing new skills tends to be problematic at best (e.g. what classes treat them as class skills?). Full bookmarks list the individual skills, though I wish they’d had a list of what the new uses were simply to create a nice at-a-glance reference for all of the new tricks that the book presents.

The distribution between the skills is fairly uneven. Some skills (e.g. Perform) have only a single new uses presented, while others (e.g. Diplomacy) gain more than a half-dozen! Still, there’s something here for every skill in the game…with one exception. It’s a pity that Profession was overlooked so completely, particularly since it desperately needed some expanded uses to make it more practical. Still, it’s a minor omission, all things considered.

The new uses themselves introduce a great deal of additional versatility into the game. The bulk of these are useful outside of combat, such as covering any tracks you leave (Survival), sliding down a surface (Climb), or blending into a crowd (Disguise). Several, however, do lend greater options to combat, such as a leaping charge (Acrobatics), blood-kissed threats (Intimidate), and throw rider (Handle Animal). There’s something here for your character, no matter what part of the game he excels at.

One of the best features of this book is also one of the most obvious, but one that I feel needs to be called out: its modularity. While this is true for most sourcebooks, its especially helpful here, as you can pick and choose what skills to allow these new uses for (and even what new uses to allow for a given skill) as you like. If you think Handle Animal and Survival are too limited, but other skills are fine, now you can beef them up without increasing the power of other skills. This book is exactly as useful as you want it to be.

Personally, I can’t wait to introduce this book into my campaign, and if you wish that your PCs got more mileage out of their skills, then you likely won’t be able to wait either. Pick up 101 New Skill Uses, and bring the most underutilized portions of your characters front and center!

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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