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  • Writer's pictureFrancois DesRochers

The Bazaar #60: Rifts Bundles of Holding

GENERAL


The Bundles of Holding are back for the Rifts RPG! For those that aren’t aware, these are a series of discounted offerings from the game publisher through the Bundle of Holding platform that accepts purchaser-defined donations (with a stated minimum), offering selected PDF copies of the publisher’s library. Discussed further in depth below, we discuss the two current offerings from Palladium Books, both for the Rifts RPG.

Full disclosure, I’ve already made my purchases into both Bundles, and I’ve also taken advantage of both of these Bundles. I’ve also taken part in the Palladium Fantasy RPG Bundle, Apocalypse Bundle (Dead Reign, Splicers and Systems Failure), and the Conan the Barbarian 2d20 System Bundles.


The two Bundles are on the clock, the offer expiring on at midnight 10 June 2024.


DISCUSSION


What Is a Bundle of Holding. An obvious play on worlds from the Bag of Holding, this system provides a very quick and easy way to allow a Player or GM to increase their library for the game system(s) they enjoy. Typically provided on a limited-time basis, they offer a variety of base/core books, with options to increase the amount you spend to “unlock” additional content. In all cases though, the PDFs are offered at a steep discount, which is already approximately half of what a physical book would run you. Something that is also baked into the offer is the automatic upgrades to the Bundles you’ve already purchased. If for some reason the company sponsoring the deal adds more book to the deal, or upgrades them, you get an email notifying you of the updated files awaiting download.


Why a Bundle of Holding


  • The Discount. To begin with, most times they simply offer an absolutely fantastic deal in terms of acquiring PDF copies of the books you want. Sure, there may be some duplication with titles you may already own (either physically or as PDF); for the newcomer to the Rifts RPG though, this is an absolute bargain! Even those with all the physical copies, the portability of the PDFs isn’t something to wave away. For those without the means to acquire the physical copies and deal with exorbitant shipping, this may be the deal you are looking for.

  • Targeted Charity. Dependent on the Bundle of Holding deal, they all make a contribution of 10% of the funds (less gateway fees) to the specified charity. In the case of the two Bundles below, they are both being forwarded to the Diana Jones Award Emerging Designer Program. The Award for Excellence in Gaming they issue each year, amplified up-and-coming game designers, featuring them in an expenses-paid visit to Gen-Con. No small thing for a developer.


Rifts Core Mega Deal (Returns!). Threshold price of $19.95, this gets you the PDFs listed below in the Core Rulebook section (PDFs retail for $71). This gives any newcomer, or Player looking to get their own references, these six books provide a fantastic start into the Rifts RPG. The upgrade into the Sourcebook Collection (PDFs retail for $129) is a mind-boggling deal, for an additional (approximately) $20! For about $40, this nets you $200 worth of PDFs, and helps a good cause. Physical books for this collection currently comes in at about $350 worth of product.


Notes


  • Core Rulebook Collection

o   Rifts Ultimate Edition

o   The GM Kit

o   Index and Adventures (Volumes 1 and 2)


  • Sourcebook Collection

o   Rifts: Bestiary

o   Conversion Book 2: Pantheons of the Megaverse

o   Sourcebook: Vampires


Rifts Coalition Wars. Threshold price of $17.95, this gets you the PDFs listed in the Coalition Collection (PDFs retail for $72). Just like the Rifts Core Mega Deal, you’re getting a bargain on the PDFs you’d be purchasing. The upgrade into the Tolkeen Collection (PDFs retail for $97) is no slouch of a deal either, all for an additional (approximately) $20. This is for a total of over $160 worth of PDFs. Cost for the physical books currently comes in just over $225.


Notes


  • Coalition Collection

o   Rifts Adventure Sourcebook: Mercenary Adventures


  • Tolkeen Collection


CONCLUSION


The portability of the PDFs you purchase are a great. I understand not everyone is a fan of the PDF format. If you’re looking for a quick and easy way to increase your library, possibly even trying out several books you don’t yet physically own, just to try them out, this is a great way. It allows you to actively support Palladium Books and avoids dealing with the ethically dubious option of pirated scanned copies. There isn’t any recognizable portion of the deals that go to the publishers, but the meta-data is something Palladium Books are privy to (e.g. how many bundles, how many stretch goals unlocked). From that perspective, it gives them an idea of the market and how well these deals do only help promote the company.


The deals promoted in these Bundles are no joke, especially for a new entry into the Rifts RPG – either GM or Players. Rifts Core and Sourcebook Bundle costs ~$40 for $200 worth of PDFs; Coalition and Tolkeen Wars Bundle costs ~$40 for ~$160 worth of PDFs. Are the deals for everyone? Well, no, but they are an attractive way to expand or complete your collection. For those that have the means to make this purchase, it gives you a great entry point, and scratches the itch of making a contribution to a program that makes a difference in the industry.


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