First Look at the Pathfinder Playtest

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Welcome to the next evolution of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game!

Just shy of 10 years ago, on March 18th, 2008, we asked you to take a bold step with us and download the Alpha Playtest PDF for Pathfinder First Edition. Over the past decade, we've learned a lot about the game and the people who play it. We've talked with you on forums, we've gamed with you at conventions, and we've watched you play online and in person at countless venues. We went from updating mechanics to inventing new ones, adding a breadth of options to the game and making the system truly our own. We've made mistakes, and we've had huge triumphs. Now it is time to take all of that knowledge and make the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game even better.

By now, you've probably read all about the upcoming launch of the Playtest version of the game set to release on August 2nd, 2018 (but just in case you haven't, click here). In the weeks and months leading up to that release, we are going give you an in-depth look at this game, previewing all 12 of the classes and examining many of the most fundamental changes to the game. Of course, that is a long time to wait to get a complete picture, so I wanted to take this opportunity to give you insight into the game, how it works, and why we made the changes that we made. We will be covering these in much more detail later, but we thought it might be useful to give a general overview right now.

Illustration by Wayne Reynolds

New, but the Same

Our first goal was to make Pathfinder Second Edition feel just like the game you know and love. That means that as a player, you need to be able to make the choices that allow you to build the character you want to play. Similarly, as a Game Master, you need to have the tools and the support to tell the story you want to tell. The rules that make up the game have to fundamentally still fill the same role they did before, even if some of the mechanics behind them are different.

Building a Character

It's worth taking a moment to talk about how characters are built, because we spent a lot of time making this process smoother and more intuitive. You start by selecting your ancestry (which used to be called race), figuring out where you came from and what sorts of basic statistics you have. Next you decide on your background, representing how you were raised and what you did before taking up the life of an adventurer. Finally, you select your class, the profession you have dedicated yourself to as an intrepid explorer. Each one of these choices is very important, modifying your starting ability scores, giving you starting proficiencies and class skills, and opening up entire feat chains tailored to your character.

After making the big choices that define your character, you have a variety of smaller choices to make, including assigning skill proficiencies, picking an ancestry feat, buying gear, and deciding on the options presented by your class. Finally, after deciding on all of your choices, the only thing left to do is figure out all of your bonuses, which are now determined by one unified system of proficiency, based on your character's level.

As you go on grand adventures with your character, you will gain experience and eventually level up. Pathfinder characters have exciting and important choices to make every time they gain a level, from selecting new class feats to adding new spells to their repertoires.

Playing the Game

We've made a number of changes to the way the game is played, to clean up the overall flow of play and to add some interesting choices in every part of the story. First up, we have broken play up into three distinct components. Encounter mode is what happens when you are in a fight, measuring time in seconds, each one of which can mean life or death. Exploration mode is measured in minutes and hours, representing travel and investigation, finding traps, decoding ancient runes, or even mingling at the queen's coronation ball. Of all the modes of play, exploration is the most flexible, allowing for easy storytelling and a quick moving narrative. Finally, the downtime mode happens when your characters are back in town, or relative safety, allowing them to retrain abilities, practice a trade, lead an organization, craft items, or recuperate from wounds. Downtime is measured in days, generally allowing time to flow by in an instant.

Most of the game happens in exploration or encounter mode, with the two types of play flowing easily from one to the other. In fact, exploration mode can have a big impact on how combat begins, determining what you roll for your initiative. In a group of four exploring a dungeon, two characters might have their weapons ready, keeping an eye out for danger. Another might be skulking ahead, keeping to the shadows, while the fourth is looking for magic. If combat begins, the first two begin with their weapons drawn, ready for a fight, and they roll Perception for their initiative. The skulking character rolls Stealth for initiative, giving them a chance to hide before the fight even begins. The final adventurer rolls Perception for initiative, but also gains some insight as to whether or not there is magic in the room.

After initiative is sorted out and it's your turn to act, you get to take three actions on your turn, in any combination. Gone are different types of actions, which can slow down play and add confusion at the table. Instead, most things, like moving, attacking, or drawing a weapon, take just one action, meaning that you can attack more than once in a single turn! Each attack after the first takes a penalty, but you still have a chance to score a hit. In Pathfinder Second Edition, most spells take two actions to cast, but there are some that take only one. Magic missile, for example, can be cast using from one to three actions, giving you an additional missile for each action you spend on casting it!

Between turns, each character also has one reaction they can take to interrupt other actions. The fighter, for example, has the ability to take an attack of opportunity if a foe tries to move past or its defenses are down. Many classes and monsters have different things they can do with their reactions, making each combat a little bit less predictable and a lot more exciting. Cast a fire spell near a red dragon, for example, and you might just find it takes control of your magic, roasting you and your friends instead of the intended target!

Monsters and Treasure

The changes to the game are happening on both sides of the GM screen. Monsters, traps, and magic items have all gotten significant revisions.

First off, monsters are a lot easier to design. We've moved away from strict monster construction formulas based off type and Hit Dice. Instead, we start by deciding on the creature's rough level and role in the game, then select statistics that make it a balanced and appropriate part of the game. Two 7th-level creatures might have different statistics, allowing them to play differently at the table, despite both being appropriate challenges for characters of that level.

This also makes it easier for us to present monsters, giving us more space to include special abilities and actions that really make a monster unique. Take the fearsome tyrannosaurus, for example; if this terrifying dinosaur gets you in its jaws, it can take an action to fling you up to 20 feet through the air, dealing tremendous damage to you in the process!

Hazards are now a more important part of the game, from rangers creating snares to traps that you have to actively fight against if you want to survive. Poisons, curses, and diseases are a far more serious problem to deal with, having varied effects that can cause serious penalties, or even death.

Of all of the systems that Game Masters interact with, magic items are one of the most important, so we spent extra time ensuring that they are interesting and fun. First and foremost, we have taken significant steps to allow characters to carry the items they want, instead of the items that they feel they must have to succeed. Good armor and a powerful weapon are still critical to the game, but you no longer have to carry a host of other smaller trinkets to boost up your saving throws or ability scores. Instead, you find and make the magic items that grant you cool new things to do during play, giving you the edge against all of the monsters intent on making you into their next meal.

We can't wait until you find your first +1 longsword to see what it can do!

What's Next?

There are a lot of things we are excited to show off, so many in fact that we have to pace ourselves. First off, if you want to hear the game in action right now, we've recorded a special podcast with the folks from the Glass Cannon Network, converting the original Pathfinder First Edition Module, Crypt of the Everflame, to the new edition. Head on over to their site and listen to the first part of this adventure now!

Stop by tomorrow for the first blog taking an in-depth look at Pathfinder Second Edition, starting off with the new system for taking actions, then visit us again on Friday for an exploration of the Glass Cannon game, exploring some of its spoilers in detail!

We Need You!

All of us at Paizo want to take a moment to thank you, the fans, players, and game masters that have made this exciting journey a possibility. It's been a wild ride for the past decade, and speaking personally, I could not be more excited for where we are heading. But, as I am sure you've heard a number of times already, we cannot make this game without you, without your feedback and passion for the game. Thank you for coming with us on this adventure, thank you for contributing to our community, and thank you for playing Pathfinder.

Jason Bulmahn
Director of Game Design

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Tags: Pathfinder Playtest
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Dark Archive

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Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I wish I could be more excited, but having played 5e the idea of a universal proficiency bonus really dampens the excitement. The minute adjustments afforded by the skill point system is one of my favorite parts of the game. I’ll wait and see how the rules actually pan out before casting final judgements, but ultimately I’m glad there’s more than enough PF1e content to date me and my game group for years to come.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Steelfiredragon wrote:

great, they finally do a pathfinder ruleset book of taldor and then they go and do a new setting.

but they still have not done a pathfinder ruleset book of kyonin

well. I'm not sure Ill be getting your new books.

...but the setting shouldn't be changing. The ruleset is changing, but other than canonizing some of the results of the APs the setting should stay the same. It's been confirmed they're not even doing a timeskip or anything.

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2015 Top 16, RPG Superstar 2013 Top 16

18 people marked this as a favorite.

But also, I hope PF2E does the following:

1. Jettison any complexity that gets in the way of play. The challenges in the game should be bugbears and green slimes, not navigating the rules!
2. Fix character creation. Make the PC rules robust enough that it's virtually impossible to create either a) a PC so gimped they can't contribute, or b) a PC so powerful they overshadow the whole group. You are smart designers and can figure out ways to differentiate without making them all mechanically identical! Get rid of trap options, feat taxes, and must-haves like Power Attack. Get rid of things that make 1 statistic do the work of multiple stats (e.g. oradin Cha shenanigans)... but let statistics do the work they should (e.g. rogue weapons should work using Dex without Weapon Finesse/Fencing Grace/Dervish Dance/etc.). Never make a class wait until mid-levels to "come online" - classes should function as envisioned from 1st level (e.g. druid shapeshifting).
3. Fix high-level play: get rid of the buff-stacking and rocket-tag games.
4. Give us a robust conversion document so we can easily convert past content to PF2E.
4b. Make that conversion document robust enough that the community can convert and share past PFS content converted to 2E, and run it for credit. Don't abandon the old content! Crowdsource conversion so your PFS designers aren't trying to tackle it alone.
5. Don't try to make adversaries play by PC rules. There are some things boss monsters need that should never, ever be in PC hands. In particular, absolute immunities (e.g. freedom of movement) and things that affect action economy (haste, dazes, etc.) should be really, really hard for PCs to get.
6. Fix magic items. No magic item should ever be "required" for a PC's "build" to function. Make magic items feel special again. Put control over magic item acquisition back in the GM's hands, not the PCs'. It sounds like you've got a great start already on this one.

I've been with PF since alpha, but in the last couple years I have largely moved on to other games. If your team can pull off these things, you stand a great chance of getting back my business and time. I'm rooting for you!


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Ivan Rûski wrote:
Well, just counting the "pure rules material" books I have in hardcover, I have 10 hardcover books that retailed from $40-$50. So you are telling me you couldn't take those to a used bookstore and get enough to buy the core book?

That is indeed what I'm telling you.

You'd probably get a better rate of return on eBay- except that everybody looking to unload their old books will be flooding the market at the same time- and anybody who actually wants them probably already has them.

The value of selling off physical copies isn't something you should bank on.


8 people marked this as a favorite.

I'm so sad about this. I've mostly just been sitting here in shock for a couple hours, feeling a sense of loss. I've spend literally thousands of dollars on Pathfinder. Much of which I haven't really gotten a chance to use. And now I never will. The same thing happened with 4th edition. I bought a bunch of stuff that was all suddenly worthless.

I'm not made of money, and spending new money on top of old to get back things I already paid for once leaves a sad taste in my mouth. I feel especially upset about more recent purchases. They are essentially wasted money that I didn't know were wasted at the time. It's hard enough finding a group willing to play current RPG lines... The idea that I'll just be able to keep playing Pathfinder in whatever edition I want isn't a reality for me. No one wants to play the obsolete thing.

So, I guess, good bye and good luck. Maybe fresh players with fresh money will enjoy this, but it won't be me.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Anguish wrote:

Well. I've little interest in urinating on anyone's parade and this isn't a negotiable thing, so I'll keep things simple as upbeat as I can.

Congratulations, Paizo. And best luck to you.

I'll likely try the 2e playtest rules, because it's only fair to give artists I like the benefit of the doubt, even when they decide to go in the opposite direction of my personal preferences (ie. "yay, we're getting rid of all those pesky hard things like rich action systems and complex bonuses and time-consuming stuff like iterative attacks that require math.")

But hey. Maybe it won't be too hard to convert the future adventure material to run with the 3.x level ruleset. Dare to dream.

Hmm. Anguish’s choice of metaphor was a bit vivid for me, but the sentiment of the post as a whole spoke to me.

I play actual Pathfinder games (as opposed to tinkering with characters and such) rarely enough that I’m very far from the point of wanting a new edition, so while I’ll take a look, I probably won’t keep up. I still haven’t gotten around to getting a copy of Starfinder to see what it’s all about, for example. Slowing down my RPG consumption would not be a terrible thing (my thesis thanks you in advance!), but if nothing else I’ll stick around for a bit to round out my first edition collection with adventure paths and such that I still have my eye on.

That said, may I be self-indulgent and float a few things here that I’d love to see going forward? I’ll just work on the presumption that I may. :)

I enjoy magic-heavy games, and what I’d probably most like to see is an archetype and/or multiclassing system that’s modular enough to get functional equivalents of most of the spellcasting classes from the first edition running out of the core second or very soon thereafter. After all these years, I still haven’t rolled up a witch, but a wizard with hexes would be lovely, and I have many magi and warpriests near and dear to my heart. Arbitrarily complex options that don’t take up too much design space that could be bolted on for those lunatics among us who enjoy them would also be greatly appreciated: I would be happy with something like a better-balanced version of the Sacred Geometry feat to model just how weird combat magic can be.

Again, though, that’s all so much self-indulgence. Come what may, I’ll give the playtest a look, and I wish Paizo all the best going forward, even if our paths end up diverging.

Dark Archive

you know in "x" years everyone will be complaining they dont want starfinder2 or pathfinder 3. In 35 years of gaming Ive done this a bunch of times. Im kind of glad because recently we have been playing Numenera and Call of Cthulhu and having a good time. Star Wars is a regular request at this point.we bought Genesys and it looks fun, all good things come to an end. Paizo will still get my Starfinder business so i dont feel im completely jumping ship. You dont like 2.0 play 1st try something new, as a completist i almost felt trapped if i quit now what would i miss. It turns out what I might have missed was the chance to play other stuff. Don t get me wrong I love the Paizo folks and I wish them the best, I hope 2e performs beyond their wildest expectations. but everything dies everything changes and now 1e is dying and my tastes are changing. i think i will be just fine.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

Super nervous about this. I wasn't particularly fond of Starfinder's rule system and the the way things are done, and this sounds like it is going to be similar.


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I don't want too simplified a game. Expendable mobs like Orcs fine but if the PCs are up against the Evil Wizard of Fire top mountain. That needs to be a robust enemy with at least as many options as a PC if not more.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Shinigami02 wrote:
Steelfiredragon wrote:

great, they finally do a pathfinder ruleset book of taldor and then they go and do a new setting.

but they still have not done a pathfinder ruleset book of kyonin

well. I'm not sure Ill be getting your new books.

...but the setting shouldn't be changing. The ruleset is changing, but other than canonizing some of the results of the APs the setting should stay the same. It's been confirmed they're not even doing a timeskip or anything.

yeah I meant a new ruleset.

still its mostly money issues.

Edit: just do me a favor Paizo, kill the sacred cow of a paladin must be LG. make it must be good aligned.seriously though, I love the paladin class, teh dive grace, aura of courage and all, but the law part neeeds to go. you do this and I might get it if my wallet allows( that is the book itself not the playtest)

Scarab Sages

4 people marked this as a favorite.
CelticDragon38 wrote:

You...realize Homo sapiens is a species, right? And that there are many sentient animal species?

I'd say that anything down to spiders qualifies as "sentient". People have a bad habit of conflating "sentient" with "sapient" - and even that may be a largely artificial barrier.

As I've stated elsewhere prior, there should definitely be a [Sapient] subtype for Animals - apes, corvids, parrots, cetaceans, cephalopods, and likely more besides should have base Intelligence scores of 3-4 at a minimum.


4 people marked this as a favorite.

Considering there are hundreds of things I would like to see for Pathfinder 1e this is by far the most disappointing news I have ever heard (for any non-real life related stuff).


3 people marked this as a favorite.

Like others I am torn on this.

I want to see how this works, but I don't feel ready for a new edition.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Wei Ji the Learner wrote:


So how do we pre-order as it doesn't appear to be available in the Store yet?

You can preorder print editions from paizo.com between March 20 and May 1.


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My main concern lies in characters and npcs having different build rules. I have had a tough time getting my head around it in Starfinder, and don't want to see it in Pathfinders. Often times an enemy can become a friend or vise versa. I want all the beings in my RPG world to be built using the same rules.


5 people marked this as a favorite.

Am I the only one who considers Star Wars: Saga Edition the ideal of how d20 systems should have evolved? A small number of flexible classes that lack fixed new abilities (like Pathfinder's Arcana/Revelations/ninja tricks but with a total lack of fixed abilities), bonuses are built into having a high level in PC classes instead of mandatory magic items, most non-vehicle items can be bought at character creation and more money is just more gadgets to improve versatility instead of a loot treadmill, there's no need for a healer (the only source of healing is sacrificial and training in medicine+medical gear), and grunts are a threat to even the highest level characters (virtually everything has an area attack option).

It's trivial for two of the same class to be completely different right from the first level. It's the polar opposite of 5E's "Everyone (except casters with spells known) is the same for the first level beyond ability scores, then they pick a specialization and they're the same as everyone else with that specialization".

There are still some changes I'd add though. Stuff like learning new trained skills at infrequent level breakpoints (like ability scores increases are gained), removing odd ability scores, and Weapon Finesse being a native option instead of a mandatory feat, but it's a solid start.

Arutema wrote:
Wonder how much Pathfinder 2e will draw from Starfinder.

Starfinder still needs more errata before I'd base anything on it. You still have stuff like 17 being strictly worse than 16 if you try raising that score or Mechanic abilities giving how to define their saving throw but the one that actually gives a save gives it's own method of generating a save.

Bongo BigBounce wrote:
My main concern lies in characters and npcs having different build rules. I have had a tough time getting my head around it in Starfinder, and don't want to see it in Pathfinders.

I agree with this. I've never really seen a good reason for rules asymmetry in an RPG beyond monstrous species (and even then, the monster class rules of Savage Species were a great concept and homebrewers+DSP made them great mechanically)

Dark Archive

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Mark Moreland wrote:

As for deep continuity, as mentioned in the FAQ, we won't be changing any of the core assumptions of the setting, or jumping forward decades or anything. Some rulers might change here and there as makes sense, and some borders may shift from the default First Edition map, but the history of the world isn't getting retconned or anything like that.

Is making Goblins a playable race not changing the core assumptions of the setting? Since being a playable race right out the core rulebook would indicate they have gone from crazed pyro's people tend to kill on sight to being if not welcomed at least tolerated.

Scarab Sages

Jacob Blackmon wrote:


I hope that archetypes ADD abilities to existing classes, like they do in 5th edition D&D; rather than swapping abilities out.

2nd Edition D&D kits operated on "Benefits" and "Drawbacks", which offered another, massive layer of flexibility.

Jacob Blackmon wrote:


I hope that the equipment is not level based, like it is in Starfinder. A sword should be a sword should be a sword.

Agreed. I'm not sure what that was about (I know, I know, something about level as a measure of clout and access to resources - but how's Starfinder-Bilbo supposed to find The One Ring?!?).

Sovereign Court

Sounds interesting and definitely worth looking into. I wonder if ability score boosts at creation will be wholly ancestry-based, or if it will go like starfinder and have background (and possibly class) give boosts to ability scores too, reducing the effect of racial stats 'forcing' you into certain class options to be optimised.

As someone who tried to ignore the big 6 magic items to get more interesting stuff, that aspect of magic items etc sounds good. Just hope that it doesn't swing to 5es level of magic items where they are super rare.


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I hope this plays a lot like 5th edition, including the magic items and how 5e did magic items, or at least make them hard to buy. 5e characters are also much easier to create and are more balanced, no one class is superior to the next.


14 people marked this as a favorite.

If I wanted to play 5E I would play 5E. I want more than that out of Pathfinder


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Will there be a PDF covering info on how to convert Pathfinder 2 to first ed if desired?


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This sounds fantastic, can't wait to give it a try. Pathfinder has been my "main" game for years now but I've grown to love other games too and I'm more appreciative of differing game design strategies. I look forward to trying out this new flavor of fun!!

Not sure what all the complaining is about.
-Pathfinder has more material than anyone could use in a lifetime. Just because the game isn't receiving official support after next year doesn't mean the game won't have a huge player base. Nothing is stopping you from playing your favorite game.
-Your Pathfinder books will hold their value, so that's a non-issue. Anyone who has looked for ANY edition of D&D books on ebay can see that they are anything but cheapened due to them being out of print.
-Accept it, the only thing that doesn't change is change itself. You can't expect Paizo to keep it up forever. 10 years worth of material is a huge wealth of available material.
-PF 2nd is not D&D 5e. It sounds nothing like 5e.


7 people marked this as a favorite.
Bongo BigBounce wrote:
My main concern lies in characters and npcs having different build rules. I have had a tough time getting my head around it in Starfinder, and don't want to see it in Pathfinders. Often times an enemy can become a friend or vise versa. I want all the beings in my RPG world to be built using the same rules.

I can't count how many time a NPC changed into a PC in my games because the earlier PC died and the NPC was the only other person around in that dungeon. Building NPCs differently is a completely counter intuitive decision


3 people marked this as a favorite.

I am very hopeful that Pathfinder 2nd Edition will bring martials and casters into balance and redress the problem of the martial/caster disparity.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Ellias Aubec wrote:
As someone who tried to ignore the big 6 magic items to get more interesting stuff, that aspect of magic items etc sounds good. Just hope that it doesn't swing to 5es level of magic items where they are super rare.

The problem is that 5E didn't really hold to this. All the published adventures follow roughly the same path of progression and give out magic items at roughly the same level points. It just removed any ability of players to pick anything.

Which, come to think of it, sums up how 5E feels to me in many ways. A character in 5E is mechanically their race, ability scores, class and specialization in that class (plus spells known if applicable). Those 4 things are further reduced by how most classes won't go far without a general type of ability score spread (a smart fighter that's neither dexterous nor strong won't go far) and several classes don't choose their specialization till latter levels (I'd accept this making character gen less front loaded if it was consistent and some classes weren't picking that at level one).


3 people marked this as a favorite.

To all the people freaking out. I'm sure there are still going to be people who want to play the original Pathfinder, and that original only. There are STILL 3.5 games going on in the LFG for Roll20. There is so much content that you can pretty much keep playing whatever you want.

Paizo Employee Franchise Manager

6 people marked this as a favorite.
Kevin Mack wrote:
Is making Goblins a playable race not changing the core assumptions of the setting? Since being a playable race right out the core rulebook would indicate they have gone from crazed pyro's people tend to kill on sight to being if not welcomed at least tolerated.

The plan is to address this in the course of play in an upcoming adventure so that it is part of the evolving narrative rather than simply tacked on all of a sudden with no context. The setting has always had dozens of races living alongside the predominately human population of Golarion. We're just adding a few more goblins into the mix. As to whether that change makes the entire setting somehow different, that's something everyone is going to have to decide for themselves.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

9 people marked this as a favorite.

I see a lot of people considering whether Pathfinder Second Edition is an evolution of Starfinder. It isn't. Starfinder and Pathfinder Second Edition are both evolutions of Pathfinder First Edition. And both were being worked on at the same time, so each also informed the other. I would say they're siblings.


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Is the lore for Golarion going to be kept relatively consistent for a seamless transition with PF2E? I admit I was disappointed with other games when they decided to axe half the pantheon, etc, and erase entire species from existence.

Edit: Also is the timeline going to be continuous? Or will there be any time skippage backward or forward involved?


Bodhizen wrote:
I am very hopeful that Pathfinder 2nd Edition will bring martials and casters into balance and redress the problem of the martial/caster disparity.

Well...from what I heard in the podcast a spell takes twice as long to cast than it takes to stab someone. So in 1 round the wizard casts 1 spell and the fighter stabs him twice.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Most of what I read this far is reassuring. This could be the best version of a D&D-esque game for me, at least I hope so.

Two things I wanted to add:

1. in the FAQ, about the changes in the iconics' gear, I hope it doesn't mean that classes will became more restricting, aka, fighters will be only sword and shield, or ranger only dual-wielding, or those things overwhelmingly baked into their abilities. I loved how those things were flexible and how the iconics went against thise clichés. Naturally, this could be done with the archetypes, but still.

2. Magic items. I'm okay with making magic items more unique and making them less mandatory, but I want to keep the ability of PCs making them with adequate crafting rules and even buying them. The 5e way of making them GM fiat isn't in line with how I picture high-magic settings like FR, or Golarion. If magic is, not exactly everyday, but common enough and half the classes using it, it doesn1t make sense to me to be like that. I want my wizards to be able to make scrolls.


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Vic Wertz wrote:
I see a lot of people considering whether Pathfinder Second Edition is an evolution of Starfinder. It isn't. Starfinder and Pathfinder Second Edition are both evolutions of Pathfinder First Edition... but the designers were nevertheless informed by lessons learned from Starfinder.

how so, if they are still trying to fix what isn't necessarily broken? 3.x had a long life because all in all it worked

Paizo Employee Franchise Manager

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Subparhiggins wrote:

Is the lore for Golarion going to be kept relatively consistent for a seamless transition with PF2E? I admit I was disappointed with other games when they decided to axe half the pantheon, etc, and erase entire species from existence.

Edit: Also is the timeline going to be continuous? Or will there be any time skippage backward or forward involved?

FAQ wrote:

Will world-shattering events change the basic assumptions of the setting?

People familiar with Andoran, Cheliax, Osirion, Qadira, Taldor, and all the rest will still recognize these nations in their Second Edition iterations. No global cataclysm will alter the fundamental assumptions of the setting, and we aren't planning on killing off your favorite deity. However, some plot points from past Adventure Paths will become part of the setting's core assumption, like new rulers in Korvosa and Taldor, and a shifting political landscape in northwestern Cheliax. The forthcoming Return of the Runelords Adventure Path and the as-yet-unannounced final First Edition Adventure Path will plant new seeds for the setting going forward; any significant changes to the setting will happen "on screen" so players can participate in them at the table.

Will the timeline of the Pathfinder campaign setting be advanced?

Since the setting's earliest days, we have been advancing the in-game year with each real-world year. This isn't changing, so at the 2019 launch of Second Edition, the in-world year will be 4719 Absalom Reckoning.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Mark Moreland wrote:
Kevin Mack wrote:
Is making Goblins a playable race not changing the core assumptions of the setting? Since being a playable race right out the core rulebook would indicate they have gone from crazed pyro's people tend to kill on sight to being if not welcomed at least tolerated.
The plan is to address this in the course of play in an upcoming adventure so that it is part of the evolving narrative rather than simply tacked on all of a sudden with no context. The setting has always had dozens of races living alongside the predominately human population of Golarion. We're just adding a few more goblins into the mix. As to whether that change makes the entire setting somehow different, that's something everyone is going to have to decide for themselves.

See Nott the Brave from the new campaign of critical role for an example of a goblin monster as an adventurer for details.

Grand Lodge

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Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

You know what I just heard? I heard that with one more hardcover and a handle full of campaign setting/companion books, and 1.5 years worth of APs, I'll have the entire run of PF1e.

Even if me and my players don't like what we see in the PF2e playtest, we'll be set for life.

-Skeld


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Greylurker wrote:


Well...from what I heard in the podcast a spell takes twice as long to cast than it takes to stab someone. So in 1 round the wizard casts 1 spell and the fighter stabs him twice.

I hope this doesn't mean spell casters are doing nothing half their turns.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Mark Moreland wrote:
Kevin Mack wrote:
Is making Goblins a playable race not changing the core assumptions of the setting? Since being a playable race right out the core rulebook would indicate they have gone from crazed pyro's people tend to kill on sight to being if not welcomed at least tolerated.
The plan is to address this in the course of play in an upcoming adventure so that it is part of the evolving narrative rather than simply tacked on all of a sudden with no context. The setting has always had dozens of races living alongside the predominately human population of Golarion. We're just adding a few more goblins into the mix. As to whether that change makes the entire setting somehow different, that's something everyone is going to have to decide for themselves.

Sorry but I dont see how it could work period. Dont have a problem with them making one of the various races core but with Goblins means pretty much a fundamental rewrite of the races background especially if there integrating the rules system and the setting closer together. So either a complete reworking on how goblins work or they become the new Kender.


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Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
TriOmegaZero wrote:
It's interesting being on the opposite side of an edition change. I was on the other side of the 3.5/4E break. Now it looks like I'm in the 2E camp.

When did you decide you were in the anti-new edition camp with 3.5/4? When WotC announced the 4e idea, I was optimistic. They had won me over with 3e, so I was open to see what they were working on. It wasn’t until serious info started coming out on 4e that I came to the conclusion they were off in the weeds somewhere far from where I wanted them to be.

Similarly, Paizo won me over with PF. They earned my open mind and it will stay open unless I learn something that will be a dealbreaker (like 4e or Traveller: New Era). So far, not a dealbreaker in sight.


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well at least we know now what the Doomsday clock alluded to


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This is exciting! I have been impressed by the Paizo design team's work over the years and I can't help but think that Pathfinder 1st edition was limited by the need to be backwards-compatible with 3.5, and that they discarded some ideas for this purpose. Even Pathfinder Unchained needed to be in the form of "patches" to Pathfinder and could only do so much with the basic chassis. This is an opportunity for the Paizo team to modify the foundations.


deuxhero wrote:
Greylurker wrote:


Well...from what I heard in the podcast a spell takes twice as long to cast than it takes to stab someone. So in 1 round the wizard casts 1 spell and the fighter stabs him twice.
I hope this doesn't mean spell casters are doing nothing half their turns.

not exactly. I've only heard 1 of the two podcasts so far but each round of combat you get 3 actions. All actions are equal. so take 3 moves or 3 attacks or pull a potion, drink it and throw it in the monsters face, etc...

For spells the guy had to use 1 action for the somatic component, and 1 action for the verbal component.

Now I do wonder how that is going to interact with metamagic like Still or Silent spell (assuming those are still in the game)

Scarab Sages

Hythlodeus wrote:
well at least we know now what the Doomsday clock alluded to

Told 'em they meant something BIG!

Sovereign Court

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Charlie Bell wrote:

But also, I hope PF2E does the following:

1. Jettison any complexity that gets in the way of play. The challenges in the game should be bugbears and green slimes, not navigating the rules!
2. Fix character creation. Make the PC rules robust enough that it's virtually impossible to create either a) a PC so gimped they can't contribute, or b) a PC so powerful they overshadow the whole group. You are smart designers and can figure out ways to differentiate without making them all mechanically identical! Get rid of trap options, feat taxes, and must-haves like Power Attack. Get rid of things that make 1 statistic do the work of multiple stats (e.g. oradin Cha shenanigans)... but let statistics do the work they should (e.g. rogue weapons should work using Dex without Weapon Finesse/Fencing Grace/Dervish Dance/etc.). Never make a class wait until mid-levels to "come online" - classes should function as envisioned from 1st level (e.g. druid shapeshifting).
[...]
5. Don't try to make adversaries play by PC rules. There are some things boss monsters need that should never, ever be in PC hands. In particular, absolute immunities (e.g. freedom of movement) and things that affect action economy (haste, dazes, etc.) should be really, really hard for PCs to get.

Most of this is the exact opposite of what I, and a number of posters I've seen earlier in this thread, want. It really is true you can't please everyone.


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I've just recently started getting into Pathfinder, about a month ago, coming from playing D&D 5e. I really love what I've seen so far, but... I'm not sure how I feel about a new PF edition being thrown into the ring.

Should I stick with PF 1e or make the switch over to the new edition...? There's probably enough content in PF 1e to last me till the day I die, but at the same time, I don't wanna be left behind in the dust....

I'll probably end up switching to 2e when its available. I'm probably in a very lucky situation since I'm now just getting into PF & not an old fan, so it won't really have much of an impact on me, I guess.


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One of the changes I did like with Starfinder was the ability to play large sized PCs again, something I'd missed ever since 3.5 D&D, as well as some races with incredibly bizarre anatomy.

Will PF2E allow for a wide amount of diversity in player races? Or more ease in playing monstrous races than was in PF? I miss my gnolls, my lizardfolk, minotaurs, and centaurs.


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Having seen the changes in Pathfinder Unchained (Barbarian, Rogue-that-works, slightly overpowered Monk-that-now-works) and seen the Starfinder rules, I've been expecting this announcement for about four years, and anticipating it ever since the Starfinder playtest.

I think it's overdue. :)

Viva Paizo. Thank you for doing this. You're saving me the trouble of trying to convert Starfinder into a cleaner Pathfinder.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Bill Dunn wrote:

When did you decide you were in the anti-new edition camp with 3.5/4? When WotC announced the 4e idea, I was optimistic. They had won me over with 3e, so I was open to see what they were working on. It wasn’t until serious info started coming out on 4e that I came to the conclusion they were off in the weeds somewhere far from where I wanted them to be.

Similarly, Paizo won me over with PF. They earned my open mind and it will stay open unless I learn something that will be a dealbreaker (like 4e or Traveller: New Era). So far, not a dealbreaker in sight.

I believe at the announcement of the revoking of Dungeon/Dragon licenses. I never really was interested in 4E, and the continuing revelations didn't change that. I did try 4E, but it ended up being more 3.5/4E hybrid since the rules weren't fully out. I'd give it another shot, if there were a good group for it.


Podcast is definately worth listening to, gives a good impression of the changes and shows some idea on conversion. GM in it is pretty much converting the old Crypt of the Everflame on the spot while they play. Gives the impression that conversion isn't going to be that hard

Shadow Lodge

3 people marked this as a favorite.
ZᴇɴN wrote:
Charlie Bell wrote:

But also, I hope PF2E does the following:

1. Jettison any complexity that gets in the way of play. The challenges in the game should be bugbears and green slimes, not navigating the rules!
2. Fix character creation. Make the PC rules robust enough that it's virtually impossible to create either a) a PC so gimped they can't contribute, or b) a PC so powerful they overshadow the whole group. You are smart designers and can figure out ways to differentiate without making them all mechanically identical! Get rid of trap options, feat taxes, and must-haves like Power Attack. Get rid of things that make 1 statistic do the work of multiple stats (e.g. oradin Cha shenanigans)... but let statistics do the work they should (e.g. rogue weapons should work using Dex without Weapon Finesse/Fencing Grace/Dervish Dance/etc.). Never make a class wait until mid-levels to "come online" - classes should function as envisioned from 1st level (e.g. druid shapeshifting).
[...]
5. Don't try to make adversaries play by PC rules. There are some things boss monsters need that should never, ever be in PC hands. In particular, absolute immunities (e.g. freedom of movement) and things that affect action economy (haste, dazes, etc.) should be really, really hard for PCs to get.

Most of this is the exact opposite of what I, and a number of posters I've seen earlier in this thread, want. It really is true you can't please everyone.

Yep, pretty much this. A LOT of this stuff - ESPECIALLY NUMBER FIVE!!! - is anathema to what I want out of a game.

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