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The Manipulative Player's Guide to Sympathetic Magic
Publisher: Bards and Sages
by Mark C. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 09/29/2005 00:00:00

Well hi, I'm the third staff member to review this product. It seems to have generated a lot of interest among us and this will give it a very solid three stars I'm sure.

This is a clever little system that basically expands the scope of the Bluff skill. This system is based on using Bluff to convince someone you are performing magic upon them. It is great for characters who want to perform faith healing or play mind tricks on others. It is a good skill for diplomats, performers, barbarians or even spellcasters who want to add a little smoke and mirrors to their arsenal.

At a shy seven pages, two and a quarter spent on license and advertising, this is the shortest product I have looked at. It is based on the Sympathetic Magic feat, which is never actually listed anywhere but if you read the whole article the requirements, benefit and special conditions are explained.

There is a very narrow field of effects with this system, discluding anything that has a visual effect, Will save, does damage and spells above 6th level or higher. Of course, at the cost of a single feat, there should be some significant limits. I see care has been included to prevent abuse. If you attempt to keep bluffing the same person over and over, they gain a cumulative bonus to their opposed check each time.

Product Revision: The addition of a little art and shaded text boxes really smarten up the product. The feat is now included as a feat. All of these features make the product easier to use and clearer.

<br><br><b>LIKED</b>: This really expands the Bluff skill which encourages social activities in a system mostly geared towards combat. Its good to see this kind of work being done. The revisions have made the book easier to read. <br><br><b>DISLIKED</b>: There is a question and answer section which treats the reader as unknowledgeable.?Can I do this with sympathetic magic?? ?Haven?t you heard of such-and-such before!? It is meant to sound salesman-ish I am sure. - This was changed in the vision and reads much clearer now.

I would have liked to have seen a longer product. This is a great concept and could easily have been expanded into a Class or Prestige Class with a number of abilities. It could even be expanded into a variant magic system with new kinds of spells, feats and uses for other skills.

<br><br><b>QUALITY</b>: Very Good<br><br><b>VALUE</b>: Very Satisfied<br><BR>[THIS REVIEW WAS EDITED]<BR>

[3 of 5 Stars!]
Creator Reply:
We've actually been considering expanding on this with a more substantial supplement that would also include the Hearth Magic Skill we introduced in our Neiyar: Land of Heaven and the Abyss campaign setting. Thanks for the imput and the ideas!
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The Manipulative Player's Guide to Sympathetic Magic
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