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Just wanted to thank everyone for their input. My "starter list" now includes the core rulebook, the "Inner Sea" supplement, and the bestiary. And "Winter Wolf" for added flavor. :)
I like the idea that PDFs are available, but I think I'll go with hard copies I can get at the gaming store. PDFs are nice with a good e-reader, but there's still something to that concrete touch of flipping through pages. And I can support my local gaming store by buying it there, plus check out whether they have some Pathfinder groups I might watch or sit in on, even just for an encounter.
Thanks again, this has been helpful! With tons of supplements to potentially buy, it's good to construct a sort of starter set first. :)
Martin Kauffman 530 wrote:
If you post the approximate area in which you live, i'm sure that someone will be able to direct you to a Pathfinder group in your vicinity where you could get assistance in making a Pathfinder character or just sit in on a game to see what it's like ( I reside in New York City, but Pathfinder is nationwide.)
I'm in Albuquerque, NM. I think we still have a gaming store here, with sit-in stuff, although it moved a while ago. I probably should check that out and observe a session or two, as well.
I should say, though, my friends and I are in our 40s. Being kinda long in the tooth, it'd be really awkward sitting in on a group of 20-somethings, heh (and probably weird for them too).
If your problem with 4e was the restrictiveness and sameness of it, you'll love pathfinder. The sheer number of character ideas you can crank out is insane.
Actually, that -was- kinda the feel I got from 4E. It really didn't feel all that different when I changed from a mage to other classes, just different names for mostly the same thing.
Having really different character concepts that really feel different in play, that's definitely important to me.
Wolf Munroe wrote:
For the gamesystem itself, I'd say you should look at your opinions of 3.5e, first of all. If you love 3.5e, there's a pretty good chance you'll at last like Pathfinder (a few people complain about changes but mostly they're positive). If you're OK with 3.5e, weren't too committed with it, then you may feel the same way about the Pathfinder system. It is different but it's still the same basic spine underneath, with some tweaks. If you didn't like 3.5e, well, your mileage may vary. I've read people on here say they felt 3.5e was drab but they did like Pathfinder. I think that may be more an issue with the settings than the game mechanics though.
Truthfully, I didn't play 3.5 a long time. Maybe 5-6 adventures tops, but I liked it as far as those went. There wasn't anything I didn't like about 3.5E, if that helps.
Okay, I did see Winter Witch, and I -loved- Elaine Cunningham's work in the Realms. So that's a definite plus. And I actually prefer the more mature style of gaming. For the Realms generally, I'm a big fan also, but I didn't like the "Time of Troubles" (not the idea, just the way it played out)... and I preferred to play it with more real evil and deep roleplay, kinda like Greenwood says his home Realms work. I really disliked most of the 4E changes, unfortunately, they didn't seem to help fix the problems that were introduced in parts of 2E in 3E, if that makes sense (too much focus on the Chosen, or on Cyric and Shar, etc), and then all the god-killing, yuck. But that's water over the bridge, I guess.
So it looks like I should start off with the "Inner Sea" one, and get Winter Witch for some additional flavor? And the core rulebook?
If I started with those two, and the novel for myself, would that be good enough to start rolling up characters and start playing?
Heh, okay I think the consensus is yes. I'm not exactly sure where I'd go for specific things, though.
Where would I get an "online PRD"? My search-fu on this isn't gonna be good, since I haven't followed it from the start.
I gather you're also saying that they've split up the world into various sourcebooks, like they did for areas of the Forgotten Realms. Is that right? Do they have an over-riding "Golarion campaign setting" book that I should start with? Or is it all just "area books"? Is there one main, primary area that most people start with?
PS: I don't mind 3.5E at all, I played it a little. Although not as much as 1E. What I liked about 3.5E were the skills, various character choices you could take, paragon paths, that kind of thing. It's funny, the "kewl powers" is what 4E felt like to me (but I probably shouldn't talk about 4E here, really).
I'm definitely on board with trying out PF, I just feel like a nooblet. :)
Sorry about that. I guess I just thought I should mention things I didn't like, thinking that it'd be helpful by comparison.
What do you like best about it, and what should I get first to test out the waters, so to speak?
I'm probably what many might call an old "grognard" from back in the days of AD&D and Greyhawk. For many years, my favorite thing was the Forgotten Realms. Getting back into gaming now, 4E and Forgotten Realms just don't interest me anymore. I've tried 4E, but it feels restrictive to me somehow. As for the 4E Realms, the recent changes (on top of some 2E and 3E changes I didn't like to begin with) don't have any appeal for me, really.
So I guess what I'm wondering is... should I get into Pathfinder, will it appeal to an old grognard like me? Bear in mind, the only thing I know about Pathfinder is that it's an extension of 3.5E in some ways. I don't know about Golarion at all, other than "it's a fantasy setting".
I can say, I never really liked Eberron's tone. I did like MERP and Rolemaster in the old days. I loved Greyhawk and the original Forgotten Realms. Ravenloft was ok, but not my favorite. I didn't get to play much of 3.5E when it was the big thing, but it was ok.
So, what do you think? Would Pathfinder and Golarion be to my tastes? If so, what do you think I should start with, to test the waters?
Looks like they're starting up a comics-style crossover event that will be dotted through the "new D&D home world" (not Greyhawk but the one in core 4E rules), Forgotten Realms, Dark Sun, and Eberron.
It's the Abyssal Plague world-spanning event!
With some more tidbits here:
Thoughts, opinions? Is it the RSE that will destroy the Realms once and for all (since FR novels are still canon?), or a simple marketing ploy to get people to purchase products from different settings, or just something fun that will be a good thing?
I managed to get into a 4e group when it was first on the store shelves. One of the "try it out" gaming sessions that my local game shop hosts, that is. I went into it sort of neutral, thought it was relatively fun while playing (although very different), but since then I haven't been all that interested in either buying 4e or trying to get a 4e group together. There was just something about it that didn't reel me in, and I've been really turned sour on what they've done to the Forgotten Realms, so it's very unlikely that I'll get any 4e products.
Marc Radle 81 wrote:
... trying to have an open mind and I DEFINITELY DON'T want to get involved with the whole editions war, which I find to be very counter productive and devisive. ...
Good luck with this endeavor. Seems a bit like dressing in a suit made of roast beef and trying to interview hungry wolves in their den, but you never know - maybe some good discussion will come of it.
Whatever, angry WotC apologist. Haha!
Scott Betts wrote:
Eh, WotC is just hurting itself. It's childish and extremely unprofessional... but let's flip it around and look at the other side (which is, perhaps, even funnier):
Kobold sycophants (fanbois of 4E) who are led by a "high sycophant" (my take: their PR department).
Their "Dragon" which now only puts out crap now (sort of literal imnsho).
The idea that they view any/all comments of a negative nature as nothing but "troll"ing... (when earlier they made such a big deal of modifying the rules and even the Realms "to better address complaints and problems"). Yeah, right.
The appeal of cartoons and scatological humor - they're pandering toward the "low brows", essentially (again: kobolds). And that's what they'll get.
Even funnier when you look at it that way. They're shooting themselves in the feet and then turning themselves into a cartoon.
Because of the ridiculous changes to the Realms, I have sworn off buying all future products from WotC. They've completely destroyed something I loved, and they've insulted longstanding supportive fans in the process. So IMNSHO they can live without my financial support.
No more FR materials.
Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:
I know two of the six players a little outside of the game. For the other four I will literally be shaking their hand at the start of the session and start by saying something along the lines of "Hi, my names Jeremy, I'll be your DM for the evening and I'm going to introduce you to fantasy gaming and the world of Dungeons and Dragons,'
That sounds fun. =)
Personally, I'd make pregenerated characters - but then allow them to make cosmetic changes (male vs. female, weapon choices, thinking up brief backgrounds, that kind of thing... and if they change race or something on that order, quickly show them how stats would change). That would give them the benefit of a pregen and save time, but also give them the feel of some character creation. If there's time. =)
Why can't we just have a discussion that does not degenerate into the hurling of personal attacks?
Because you created an entire thread designed to encourage people to choose your "side" or someone else's? You sow it, you reap. Drama clings to people who generate it.
It doesn't matter who "starts" drama, because someone always will. Learn to defuse it and move on without generating more, because otherwise it will continue to be cyclical and expansive.
Just my $0.02, take it for what it's worth.
See, I was thinking of literal farmers and not of an "everyday" man. I never read Belgeriad, Eragon, Wheel of Time, Harry Potter, or Wizard of Earthsea. Likewise, I never played Baldur's Gate.
Really? In that case, I recommend them all very highly! Several fun new worlds of adventures to explore and enjoy! =)
Classic trope, doesn't "exactly" have to be a farmboy, but sometimes.
Frodo of Lord of the Rings
Haha! Vance & Red Death beat me... but I have more! =P
WotC's Nightmare wrote:
You want me to feel sorry for Richard Baker? Sorry. That's not going to happen. He has shown absolutely no remorse for being the chief achitect of the destruction of the Realms. I know he's not the only one to bring the spellplague about, but he was very antagonistic to the fans that expressed their displeasure for what they are doing to the Realms. The arrogance he has shown is very unprofessional and fills me wiht disgust.
Technically, I think Chris Perkins is responsible for the team that made all of these changes, and Rich Baker was only one of the major players. That doesn't absolve him of responsibility, but it does shift it.
True that... a really long, drawn out car wreck that takes place over weeks rather than seconds. And poor Rich Baker is getting the brunt of the fans' displeasure.
Yes, they certainly did WoW-ify it, although much of the Wow-ness relates to 4E and not just the Realms setting. That said, 4E FR will have floating island chunks in various regions (far more than the floating inverted mountains used by Netheril). One area has had its mountains replaced with glass mountains (so say reports). One entire region has supposedly been entirely replaced with new terrain and all new inhabitants (dragon-born, or walking dragon-men), with the old nation transposed to another planet (and apparently gone forever). Some nations have been blown up (Halruaa), and others untouched, by a tremendous armageddon-level event where the goddess of magic was killed (and her energies exploded all throughout the planes, re-ordering and destroying many things); and there will be no god or goddess of magic in the new era. Those kinds of things. Oh, and they advanced the timeline 100 years so to make sure everyone's PC characters (and pesky NPCs, since there were too many "named" NPCs to keep track of) are all dead now - and there will be no rules to play through that 100-year time period, but there will be handy time portals if you absolutely *must* translate your PC into the new statting system.
More generally, magic has been re-done generally in 4E, such that one has "encounter" powers, "daily" powers, and "any time you want" powers (true of all characters, not just magic). Mages lost a lot of their versatility and have become "controllers" where certain powers are expected to be used in fights (like, "use your area-of-effect power NOW"), but other drastic changes to other classes have re-defined their roles also. Fights have been re-ordered into WoW-like "boss" fights (who may or may not have lots of minions, like dozens of skeletons)... but have no fear, "controller" role characters can use their AoE powers on such minions (assuming they're rounded up appropriately) and destroyed instantly - because minions have 1 hp. And magic items are all pretty much level-dependent or you can't use them.
Have I left anything out? Probably... It's all very, very different.
I think you're absolutely correct, WotC did an extreme disservice to the fans of the FR setting. It was a horrible way to treat their customers, many of whom (like me) have followed the setting and purchased nearly everything FR for over 20 years. Still, I have no doubt that the Warcrafty spin they've put on FR will encourage people to buy it - even if they have no plans to use it. It's a shame, but they'll likely be rewarded for pissing off their customer base for FR.
But wasn't the entire point of the podcast to act as an advertisement of the super cool extra fun that 4E is supposed to be, though? If not, if it wasn't meant to be exciting and draw more people in to 4E, why bother posting it?
I've tried 4E at lower levels and it was faster and generally about as much fun as earlier versions. Showing a slow, drawn out combat just seems bizarre to me as an advertisement choice.
Besides that, the "hey, they're playing lvl 17" doesn't seem to wash for me as an argument. Regardless of the level, it didn't really look like they were having a whole lot of fun. Certainly nothing was there to show how much -more- fun it was supposed to be as compared with earlier versions.
Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:
Just a quick couple of comments after watching the podcast. I actually had to stop it because it looked so incredibly boring. Just an example of -long- combat, and the "roleplaying" was pretty much limited to Noonan hamming it up. This was just an example of "roll"-playing, which IMO is certainly not the most enjoyable part of the game. I tried the 4E game but at lower levels, and it didn't take nearly as long for combat. If it drags out like this in midrange levels (17 being the new "midrange" I guess, with epic stuff down the line), I don't really understand what was "fixed" by changing over from 3.5 to 4E.
Why not have a video podcast of actual roleplaying and not just hammed-up combat? Lower level 4E -was- fun, because it moved fast for us. You'd think they'd feature a video where people were laughing and acting out their roles, playing the "role" part at least as much as the "roll" part. And where were the "cool digital tools"? They should've showcased far more than they did... as this didn't look all that different from a 3.5E game when combat drags out. Horrible advertisement, IMO.
Matthew Morris wrote:
I've loved Lisa Smedman's work. This is the one I'm going to have to pass on, since I don't think even the quality of her work can save that plot and pacing.
I know, I love Lisa Smedman's work too. She probably was told to write in specific plot points in the 4E effort, so I don't blame her one bit. But it's a tragedy that it has to end this way.
Someone in Germany received the book (it's been released there apparently), and they've posted a very spoiler-heavy thread detailing the fate of Eilistraee, Qilue, Cavatina, the Lady Penitent, and in fact the goodly members of the drow race.
It's possible that it's not true, but it has the ring of what WotC's been doing lately.
If true, I imagine a lot of people (particularly fans of Eilistraee and the "goodly" drow) will be quite angry.
Here at WotC: http://forums.gleemax.com/showthread.php?t=1038413
I should be getting the book from Amazon in a few days and will be able to confirm if it's true or if it's a spoof (that is, assuming the June 3rd release date is correct for the US).
"Highlights" (very heavy spoilers):
According to the spoiler-poster:
Eilistraee is said to die, as part of her "plan" to transform the good dark elves into brown-skinned elves. She's killed by the Crescent Blade.
Qilue, Cavatina, and the Lady Penitent all die. Qilue's soul is destroyed in the process - as the Lady Penitent kills her.
Corellon shows up, takes up the "fight" apparently for the now brown-skinned elves, but doesn't take Lolth to task on the killing of their children.
Again - I'm just repeating what the spoiler-poster said, I have no verification of these details. They may not be true.
Ah, alrighty. Makes sense. Thanks for letting me know.
On the surface, this seems rather "chop saki" theatre to me. Or rather a lot like playing Xena, where minions get one "sokk!" and they're down.
It also brings to mind monsters from warcraft, where you might be fighting one bug and it spawns 2-4 tiny "biteys" that slow your attacks or interfere with spellcasting.
I guess it could be okay if my wizard gets an AoE or area-effect spell that could take them out.
Charles Evans 25 wrote:
I'm not sure about all or even most of the Realms novels, but Salvatore’s most recent original hardcover, The Two Swords, Book III of The Hunter’s Blade Trilogy (October 2004) debuted at # 1 on The Wall Street Journal best-seller list and at # 4 on The New York Times best-seller list. Many of the Drizzt books appear on the NYT's best seller list.
That said, the NYT's best seller list is actually made up of several lists (different genres typically get their own list), so I'm not sure if there's a permanent log with exactly which list a book was listed on.
This also might be helpful: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bestseller
Mike McArtor wrote:
Damn you and your ultra high quality catnip from Amsterdam!
must... must possess... so tasty... =)
David Marks wrote:
Unfortunately, these huge changes may kill the setting for old-timers. And there may not be enough people that are new to the setting that support it.
Erik Mona wrote:
Bruce is a solid writer. I think his involvement in the project bodes well for it being a cool campaign setting when all is said and done.
It may be "cool" for some, but what they've done to the Realms is to utterly diminish it such that it is barely recognizable. It's a damn shame, really. Floating earth motes, scores of dead gods, massive NPC death, WoW-ish landscapes, replacing continents and nations with a wave of a hand - all of these things greatly diminish the Realms.
The might just as well rename it Forgotten RSEs, because while this new setting might be "cool" in the eyes of some, it's a tragic abomination for most long-timers who have supported the setting through the years.