While the blogosphere has already reported about this widely, I figure that there is no such thing as too much exposure in a case like this.
There are many ways to donate money to the Haiti relief effort after the earthquake that levelled Port-au-Prince. For us gamers, DriveThruRPG provides a rather appealing one. For $20 donated to charity, you get a bundle of some 180(?) PDF products, including some choice products. In addition, the charity in question is Médecins Sans Frontières, or Doctors Without Borders for the English-speaking world (or the clunky Lääkärit ilman rajoja in Finland), which is established, trustworthy, reliable, and won’t run off to the Bahamas with the cash. Looks like they’ll be in the neighbourhood, though.
At the time of writing, the gaming community has dropped off $127,960 to help the effort, which is a tremendous sum. However, let’s face it, it’s not really a donation. It’s a purchase, and one that gets you more bang for your buck than… well, pretty much anything else. The real donation comes from the publishers who have freely given their products, sometimes even entire games, for the cause. I’m keeping an eye on them now, and will be sending some of my gaming euros their way in the near future. Especially Adamant Entertainment and Arc Dream have products I’ve had my eye on for some time now and will finally be picking up next month because of this.
It’s a big bundle. No, scratch that, it’s a fucking huge bundle. Over the next few days, I hope to be able to download most if not all of it and check out what it has to offer. While I know that Dork Covenant will be good and already own and love Serenity RPG in hardcover, there’s all that other stuff that I’ve never heard of, from publishers I know nothing about. There’s a lot of reading to be done.
I believe the bundle will be up until the end of the month. Note that the generosity of the gaming community is overwhelming, and among the things it whelmed over are the DriveThruRPG servers. There’s a delay of a couple of days before you can download the materials. I bought it on the 22nd and only got the e-mail just after I started writing this post. But, well, it’s some 180 gaming products for what amounted to €14, which is less than I usually pay for even one.
Now, go buy the damn thing. Even if it means you’ll be eating noodles for the rest of the month. You’ll be doing good.
(For noodles, by the way, I recommend buying the stuff without spice sachets. I boil them with a bouillon cube, usually beef or chicken-flavoured, and throw in a chopped onion and some leftovers from the fridge, possibly a tin of button mushrooms. Before I pour the noodles into a bowl, I lay out a few slices of cheese on the bottom, so they get melted by the heat of the noodles. This may not be overly healthy, but it is delicious. And cheap.)