After watching a game recently and see people playing Arduin Eternal fall back on altogether the wrong rules from another game when they were using the Charge maneuver outlined in the Battle and Melee section, I felt some points needed addressing.
First, the only requirement of distance to travel is your SIZE in feet to build up enough momentum. No where does it say you have to travel in a straight line, without deviation or change, in order to charge. So, if you drop back 5 ft to get some distance and then drive straight at someone (Charge), its a perfectly acceptable use of Charge (just cross the appropriate distance). Same applies for going around something or someone, zigzagging, and so on. As long as you travel the distance, it doesn't matter much how you did it; excepting that if you don't employ a straight line you do have to cover twice the distance to build up enough steam.
Second, the benefit to Charge is your add one-half your MASS to damage. It doesn't mean you inflict double damage or double dice or anything like it. You do incorporate MASS from other things into this calculation, such as the benefit provided by armor (see the Enc value on armor). Weight you are carrying doesn't count unless its rigged or adjusted to work with your body (e.g, armor). A sack over your shoulder doesn't fit under this ruling though a GM might rule a good backpack would and provide an Enc value.
Third, the penalty to Charge is the -30 penalty to all MANEUVER skills. That's everything from Acrobatics to Style and includes Parrying (a use of Guard), for example as well as Weapon and Style attacks. So, brash and reckless charges inflict greater damage but also suffer a penalty to hit.
Fourth, a Bestial Charge is a Charge action. Just because the Savage profession adds some additional bonuses to it doesn't make it not a Charge action. Same for the Gladiator version or for the Aerial or Jumping versions unless they specify otherwise.
Fifth, a Charge action is more than building up power and hitting someone. You can also use it to Dash or double full move on your CF Action Count. You can also Overrun someone as well. With an Overrun your focus is not on hitting them for damage but walking over them on the way to something else, though you can surely make it your focus if desired. To blow over someone, make an Athletics roll versus their DEF, compare your BODY to theirs: if you are higher, you succeed and trample them, inflicting your BODY damage and Charge damage as well as knocking them down while you continue merrily on. You could also Press and pretty much do the same thing as outlined in Overrun, just to push them in a direction you desire.