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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Advanced Class Guide (OGL)

****( ) (based on 21 ratings)
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Advanced Class Guide (OGL)
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A New Breed of Hero

Adventure like never before with the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Advanced Class Guide! Explore new heights of heroism with 10 new base classes, each with 20 levels of amazing abilities. Incredible powers also await existing characters, with more than a hundred new archetypes and class options. Prepare characters for their most legendary adventure ever with massive selections of never-before-seen spells, magic items, and more!

The Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Advanced Class Guide is a must-have companion volume to the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Core Rulebook. This imaginative tabletop game builds upon more than 15 years of system development and an open playtest featuring more than 50,000 gamers to create a cutting-edge RPG experience that brings the all-time best-selling set of fantasy rules into the new millennium.

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Advanced Class Guide includes:

  • Ten new base classes—the magic-twisting arcanist, the ferocious bloodrager, the cunning investigator, the daring swashbuckler, the formidable warpriest, and others.
  • Variant class abilities and thematic archetypes for all 29 base classes, such as the counterfeit mage and the mutagenic mauler.
  • Nearly a hundred new feats for characters of all classes, including style feats, teamwork feats like Coordinated Shot, and more.
  • Hundreds of new spells and magic items, such as feast on fear and skullcrusher gauntlets.
  • An entire armory of amazing equipment, from vital new adventuring gear to deadly alchemical weapons.

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-671-3
Pages: 256

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscription.

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Product Reviews (21)
1 to 5 of 21 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | next > last >>

Average product rating:

****( ) (based on 21 ratings)

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Great Player Resource


I did not go into this book expecting to get a lot of use out of it myself. As a GM I have always found the base classes enough to flush out any NPC. Mostly because if I want them to be different I can tweak them on the fly. But for my players this book is a gold mine of both new ideas and fantasies coming true. My players have tried multi-classing to get some of the concepts in this book to work but often you end up just wasting the level because some things would not mesh well or not work together to be viable.

I feel as there are some minor flaws in the book but this is a first printing. I have yet to see a first printing come out perfect. So as far as I am concerned that does not lower the rating. I greatly enjoyed the art work. They managed to catch the feel of the different classes almost perfectly. Though the half-orc warpriest was a bit predictable. I do appreciate that they had archetypes for most of the different classes available. Personally I have always enjoyed the different archetypes because it allows for that simple customization to get a perfect fit for what you are imagining.

I think as a GM the section I will be referencing the most will be the equipment section. Partially because I do like to give out cool items to my players. But mostly because items give me a chance to really fill out my world in some of the more mundane scenes. I can describe what is on the shelves in a shop or how a particular item looks in the hand of an enemy.

Overall I think this book will see a lot of use at my table. Not by me but by my players. Which is a nice change of pace since most of the reference books do tend to be stacked over by me. Great job on the book!

***( )( )

Taken as a whole its merely an OK book, it really does not add much new. The 10 "new" classes are simply hybrids, kind of multiclass version of their two parent classes. It even lists the two parent classes. So it feels like a bit of a rehash as opposed to say the Advanced Players Guide which is still in my opinion the bar to all add-on books are held. The feats are rather lack luster, but again they are for the most part designed for the "new" classes, the added archetypes are weak at best, really feels like they were added to pad the 250 page count, not because they are cool or needed. The spells are as lack luster, though some neat ones, again we are really running out of how many versions of the same effect we can possibly make while maintaining balance. However much of the work here was needed as we have new class spell lists.

I personally think, if Paizo wants to keep the PF revenue flowing, it is time for a new setting or expand the current Golarion world, not more class/race rehashed rules and source material. One revenue stream that has never been done, is a set of printed sticky add-ons that we can buy and add to previous printing material bringing it up to date like the PDFs (keeping purchsed PDFs up to date? Stellar work Paizo!). So those of us with 1st printing CRBs can buy and stick these on to pages giving us an updated book. The add-ons would contain a subject and the revamped text (credit card is already in hand for this).

It is an ok book taken as a whole, as it supports itself well, but standing next to the APG, its lack luster and dull, offering rehashed ideas in a new dim light as opposed to dramatic new gameplay. I think, this is where Paizo needs to stop, get a clear and over-arching vision of the landscape, before we see the WotC train wreck we saw in 2nd edition with game play and balance thrown out the window in lieu of the next quick buck.

Paizo still shines bright as a publisher of quality products, they have managed to keep Pathfinder on the tracks unlike WotC did with 2nd edition. However they are in danger of heading that way.

Pretty amazing overall

****( )

Okay, so we're talking today about the book that is going to be adding almost as many classes to the game as the core rulebook. I'll touch briefly on each class before moving to my favorite part: the archetypes.

Arcanist (Hybrid Sorcerer/Wizard): this class combines the spell knowledge of a wizard with the flexibility of a sorcerer, along with a unique set of class features to fill that niche of "a character that studies the underlying rules of magic"/"a character who studies the theory of magic" you might not have known you were missing.

Bloodrager (Barbarian/Sorcerer): This full class can stand solid in the front line with the other full BAB classes, yet it gets some (VERY) minor spellcasting ability, and can even cast while raging. Like a sorcerer, they get a bloodline, from which they draw a myriad of interesting combat options (including one granting the ability to be large while raging!).

Brawler (Fighter/Monk): Brawlers are amazing. They combine the rapid combat style of a monk (including getting similar unarmed capabilities) with the ability to wear actual armor. They also get one of my favorite new abilities: the ability to gain combat feats for a limited period of time.

Hunter (Druid/Ranger): a character that specializes in using their animal companion as their ally for purposes of teamwork feats. They get the ability to ignore their pet for purposes of shooting into melee, and the get the ability to cast up to 6th level druid spells.

Investigator (Alchemist/Rogue): This character is much more skill focused than really either of their parent classes. They get an limited ability called inspiration which they can use to boost multiple skill checks, and some class features that let them use inspiration for free. This class will quite nicely fill the super genius/Sherlock holmes niche for your game.

Shaman (Oracle/Witch): I have personally seen several different versions of a shaman class from several different game systems. Each of them have been different, and each of them have had features I'm not as fond of. This shaman is a full spell caster that gets a class feature that is based around spirits, which are themes of powers similar to how oracle mysteries are set up (and in fact are named after them). Instead of the single mystery system that the oracle uses, however, shamans gain a wandering spirit that has staggered ability progression.

Skald (Barbarian/Bard): In all honesty the execution of this class is the one I enjoyed reading the least. I'm not saying that it's a bad class, I just think that it doesn't belong in every group (as you will see). They gain the ability to grant an effect similar to a rage to everyone in the party (including granting them rage powers at higher levels!) While this is pretty solid, your party composition will determine whether or not you want this character in your group (a group full of casters will definitely not want your raging song, to be sure).

Swashbuckler (Fighter/Gunslinger): This class ditches the focus on guns and keeps the grit mechanic and deeds that a gunslinger got, combined with the guy who puts the pointy end of the sword into the other guy. They're fairly agile, and they have some interesting defensive options (including taking a 5' step as an attack is coming at you to avoid it), and they will probably fill the "wandering duelist" niche just fine in your own games.

Warpriest (Cleric/Fighter): This class falls mechanically between a paladin and a cleric. they get six levels of spells, but they are focused into specific weapons that get more powerful the higher level they are. They get to swift cast spells a certain number of times per day (as long as those spells only target themselves), and they get blessings which are flavored off of cleric domains (sans the bonus spells). They will certainly fill the "battle cleric" niche in your party!

Next time, I'll talk about archetypes, as work calls now....

Part Two, Archetypes:
So there are archetypes for almost all of the existing classes (Barbarian gets missed, which makes them cry I'm sure), including the classes that are printed in the book. The variety of pretty awesome, and it makes it even easier to build niche characters (Want to play Captain America? they got that covered. Want to play Sherlock Holmes? they got that covered. Want to play the Monarch (from Venture Brothers)? They've got that covered as well.)

Part three: Feats, Spells, and Magic Items
Ironically, this for me was the weakest section. There wasn't very much that made me go YAY! There were the items that are keyed to the new classes, and the obligatory "extra" feats for the the new classes as well. None of the spells are bad that I saw, but none of them really jumped out at me as must-haves either.

Part Four: Designing new classes and archetypes
This part of the book I skimmed through, but it honestly felt like more of a blog post/dev diary type of deal that really could have been skipped. I'm sure it's full of good advice, but it probably would have been a better fit into the gamemastery guide, and the 11 pages there could have been used to give the poor barbarian some new hotness (not that they didn't get like 20 new rage powers, but still).

As far as the editing goes, there are some issues, but overall I still feel that this book is a worth addition to your gaming shelf if you play pathfinder (or even if you're still into 3.5 and want some class ideas!)

A fairly good book

****( )

Well, after raiding three Friendly Not-So-Local Game Stores I managed to get my hands on a physical copy and took a hard look at it. Overall, it's not a bad book.

As many have noted, there are editing problems galore -- starting with the front cover (I got one of the Adventure Path copies!) Another negative for me was some of the interior art that seemed just off -- a little puffy faced, squashed people in places, odd looks and angles -- nothing that made me scream and toss the book, but not what I have come to expect either.

As far as content goes, I was happy with what a got. Not everything works for me, but there is enough good to outweigh the bad. I've liked the idea of smooshing classes together since I saw it in the various Complete Guide 3PP back years ago, and possibly before that, and I approve of the idea here. There are archetypes and spells that classes outside of the book can use as well, with new magic and mundane items added as well.

The Designing Classes section wasn't really necessary in my opinion -- it felt like something that should have been in the Gamemastery Guide or included in another product, perhaps even expanded upon. It came across more as a behind the scenes DVD extra rather than a fleshed out method to design classes. For me, it was less useful than the Race Design information from the ARG and more just general guidelines from a designers blog post.

Another hit against the book is the omission of Racial Favored Class Options for races outside the Core book. Now, there are a LOT of races added from the ARG so we'd probably need another 12-20 pages to take care of them, but their absence undermines the importance of another hardback book. Perhaps we'll get them as a downloadable extra?

Problems aside, the book is a nice addition to the Pathfinder line. I do believe the rush to get it out for GenCon caused a few more issues than the company would like; that said, it is still a very useful tool for players and GMs to use, with caution (as with any supplement), and I am not sorry to have bought a physical copy of it.

Pretty good even for non-advanced games

****( )

Short Version: If you want new classes, this is the place!

I wasn't expecting a ton out of this book, because my group intentionally makes their players as light as possible. Because blending two classes together is probably more complex than their components, I was expecting to not use many of the classes.

I ended up getting more usable ones than I expected. Arcanist stands out as one that's going to get some play, along with the slayer, swashbuckler, investigator, and possibly even hunter.

So, it exceeded expectations there. I'll definitely get more use out of this book than Ultimate Combat or Ultimate Magic.

There are also some cool archetypes. I wish we'd had the non-martial cleric archetype starting out our Rise of the Runelords and I think the arcanist school specialist will fill in nicely for the Thassilonian Specialist.

The reason I've dropped it down to 4 stars is because the book seems rushed. There are some layout issues and much of the art just doesn't feel up to Paizo's normal standards. Neither of these are deal-breakers, but the "undercooked" feeling makes me worry about the rest of the book.

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