Paradigm Shift or Not? Pathfinder and D&D Traditions


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

1 to 50 of 356 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | next > last >>

My personal feeling is that Paizo indeed does want to continue the traditions of previous editions of D&D. They are not the "next" edition of D&D, but they are looking at what was D&D up to the end of 3.5 and making their game something that can logically be said to flow from that.

However, I'm seeing people stating that Paizo is intentionally shifting away from being the "logical progression" to being their own Sword and Sorcery thing. I'm seeing this expressed by people on both sides of the statement, by people that think that this is a good and a bad thing.

I've seen it stated that Paizo might be moving away from, for example, having clerics to having "white mages," and perhaps just scrapping the differences in magic. I've also seen it stated that Paizo is just using this RPG as a stepping stone to have the customers and capital to do their own thing as an intentional business plan.

This bothers me, not only because I would not agree with this business plan (I really want my 3.5 flavored RPing, and I think I've more or less got it with PRPG, even with some of my problems with it), but because I've not seen one person at Paizo post anything that would make me think that any of this was the case.

I guess I like to take people at face value, and if they say that PRPG is going to be a d20 fantasy RPG that preserves a lot of the traditions of 3.5, I tend to think this is what they intend to do. If I see deviations from what I would have liked to have happened, I'm not assuming its because Paizo lied about their intentions, but that they had different priorities in how to preserve various aspects of the game than I have.

If, some day, those priorities become a problem, I'll move on. I have already stated that I might not be thrilled with a Paizo take on psionics or epic levels based on what has actually been said about them, but its a little early to assume anything.

I guess what I'm saying is, if you have a problem, state your problem, but don't start to extrapolate a business plan and an ulterior motive that isn't in evidence, especially when it seems to me that some of these assertions seem to be born of some passion over some aspect of the new rules that did or didn't change in the way a given customer might have liked.

Personally, I'm still seeing adventures and rules that are more or less consistent with what I liked in 3.5, and what has strayed I've already noted being concerned about, but it wasn't enough to drive me off.

I'm definitely for 3.5 remaining the baseline for this game, as well as the feel of previous editions, and I don't think I'm wrong in assuming that, even though individual members of Paizo's staff having preferences one way or another, in the end, Pathfinder is suppose to keep as many D&D elements as the OGL will allow.

Shadow Lodge

I am not sure if your asking a question, or looking for a response, or not?


I guess what I'm wondering is, do people really think that any of the changes that Paizo instituted had to do with intentionally trying to shift the feel of the game, or if the changes just happened to have that effect for some people?

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder definitely has more of a high-magic feel to many elements of the game. It's certainly harder to stress low-level characters than in 3rd Edition. But that was a stated goal - to improve low-level survivability while maintaining the flavour.

I don't think Paizo did anything that Wizards hadn't already done with splatbooks. A core PRPG game will still be less super-powered than a 3.5 game with all splatbooks in play.

Liberty's Edge

I think that whatever the "paradigm" is is too qualitative a commodity to establish this.
My "paradigm" idea might be "in 1e., paladins were wupass and Paizo's cool as hell for going back to D&D's roots."
some other guy might say, "man they boosted the paladin through the roof. I don't know where this comes from."
I also think the cleric's loss of heavy armor prof hearkens to 2e's kit-laden paradigm which might feel right at home for one of those guys who says there should be a way to trade the heav armor for a different feat, because my "temple raider of the thief god" doesn't like plate mail. So, again, one guy's idea of the paradigm might be a sacred cow sacrifice to another guy.

Shadow Lodge

I sort of think that they have. Not so much with the Cleric, but with the Rogue, Paladin, Fighter, and a few things, I really do think that Paizo has, at least partially intentionally, shifted the Paradigm of the game, though not completely, and not automatically in a horrible way. I personally do not like it, but that has to do with, in my experience, Rogues are already way, way to powerful and abusable, Fighters do not have the problems so many attribute to them, and Clerics are in no way overpowered, but really have to struggle to just keep up (and no one will ever play one, which Paizo really has not helped me here with Channel Energy), and in all cases, PF final made this worse for my groups style of play. Especially with Rogues.

Another thing is, well lets face it, Paladins are now better Clerics than Clerics, except in healing, (maybe). No matter what the intention, the goal, or whatever, they went overboard here.


There were sme big shifts in things considered holy from edition to edtion. And you can see many of them in the wizards of the coast things.

If I do remember correctly, animal companion was a ranger's thing in 2e, not a druid's. Am I wrong? (played too little with both classes)

The races couldn't be free for their classes.

Even some minor things, like gnomes being bards and not illusionists anymore, and this one came only with 3.5, not 3.0 at all! This was something different, and broke many paradigms of many people.

I believe that some things, like making the cleric less holy medieval priest were some good things. And I don't believe that PFRPG was intended as a stepstone to their new game.

But if it is, you can always keep playing 3.5 and PF. Gods, there are enough material for some 15 years of gaming, this if you never repeat anything !


Truthfully pathfinder feels more like 2nd edition to me than 3.5. I know it's an odd statement but that's where it lands for me. Personally I really like that about it -- I really liked 2nd ed. Indeed I'm really looking forward to the Beastiary. I am thinking we might see a reduction in hit dice in general while the deadliness of the beasts are kept in line with better design on abilities of the beasts instead of the 3.x method of "throw more HD on them and they'll be more awesome cause they have better HP (BAB, Saves, DCs, Skills, Feats, et al)" which really didn't do good things for game balance (34 hit dice does not a challenge rating 16 make unless we are talking about 34 levels in commoner...).


Abraham spalding wrote:
Truthfully pathfinder feels more like 2nd edition to me than 3.5. I know it's an odd statement but that's where it lands for me.

I'm thrilled I'm not the only one to kinda get that feel with the game...

Scarab Sages

neoookami wrote:
Abraham spalding wrote:
Truthfully pathfinder feels more like 2nd edition to me than 3.5. I know it's an odd statement but that's where it lands for me.
I'm thrilled I'm not the only one to kinda get that feel with the game...

It must be the paladins. ;)


KnightErrantJR wrote:
I guess what I'm wondering is, do people really think that any of the changes that Paizo instituted had to do with intentionally trying to shift the feel of the game, or if the changes just happened to have that effect for some people?

At first, I don't think they intended to make things different, just balanced. When the final print came along, though, I think they went a bit too much with the changes.

Race changes are mostly good.
Class changes are great: love 'em.
Skill changes are pretty awesome.
Feat changes I almost entirely detest.
Spell changes are for the better.


Actually it's the fact that so many classes have so many choices now. It's kind of like having the Kits back. The mechanics are given to you and, like in 2nd ed, they say now make the fluff that works for you and allows you to use these mechanics.

Many of the spells feel better now, casting defensively seems more intuitive and truthfully I've been throwing away skill points on stuff that I probably will never roll for in a game (profession{fortune teller} for example), and I'm fine with it. I don't feel like I got to scrap for every skill point I can just to have enough to cover the basics. Indeed I feel less need to cover all the basics, and more like I can rely on my team instead. I know the fighter is going to ram damage down somethings throat as long as I can keep it in range for the fighter. I also know he's going to eat up a lot of damage for me if he can get in the way (and he has good reason to want to). I can rely on the rogue, bard, and monk to pull something odd out of the bag that'll save a bad situation, and that the cleric will have something to keep us all on our feet even as he moves in to help the fighter lay down some smack. Familiars feel more possible and if I don't want one, I can choose several other things as well (either as a sorcerer or as a wizard with a item bond instead).

By the way, the animal companion grew out of the old Animal Friend spell from 1st and 2nd edition. That spell would grant you long time companions and to limit its overuse they turn it slowly (it was still in 3.0) in to the animal companion instead.

The only thing I'm not really happy with is the half orc. It just doesn't feel right with a +2 as choosen. I really did like the +2 str -2 Int +2 wis. That felt good and right for half orcs to me.

Scarab Sages

Abraham, I think you're correct about the kit-feel. In tinkering with prestige classes and house-rules I can attest that it is now very easy to substitute class abilities to customize a character without resorting to an entirely new class or a feat.

Dark Archive

With the increased differences in Domains, and Wizard specialists, and the power up to Paladins, some specific decisions sometimes feel like Pathfinder was a reactionary move to the 4E decision to move further away from the 1st / 2nd / 3rd edition roots of the game, by going further *towards* those roots (in 'feel' at least, if not always in functionality).

I have the same feeling about some elements of Pathfinder that I had back when 2nd edition was replaced by 3rd edition, a sentiment that was talked about by 3E designers at the time in the pages of Dragon magazine.

One part of me is wailing, 'They didn't change enough!' and another part of me is wailing, 'They changed too much!'

I don't think Paizo has a sinister plan to recreate D&D in their image, a la True20 or something. As long as they remain within flirting distance of 'backwards compatibility,' they have a built in market. If they chose to abandon the brand entirely, I think they'd have a much harder time finding a profitable niche. There is a market for D&D players who don't feel that 4E fills that role, but the market for people willing to play further out variations, like True20, is significantly smaller.

At least, IMO. I have no idea what sort of sales numbers True20 is pulling down, and I have no interest in eating my hat, so I'll avoid sounding too dogmatic about that. :)

Scarab Sages

Set wrote:


One part of me is wailing, 'They didn't change enough!' and another part of me is wailing, 'They changed too much!'

And the third, dispassionate part, is saying 'Juuust right!', right?

By that I mean if they had changed more or less one side might win. I felt the same with 3rd edition, and it grew on me enough to replace 2nd.

By contrast, with 4th edition I thought 'waaaay to much'.


This is just my opinion, but I think that the "negatives" are the only things that tend to bug me when it comes to shifting what a class can or can't do.

For example, if clerics gain the ability to use, say, a spear or a dagger, it doesn't really invalidate a cleric running around with a mace. Similarly, letting dwarves be wizards doesn't mean that an existing dwarf fighter has changed any, or if a gnome has a different favored class that it changes a gnome illusionist any.

For what its worth, I was never happy that the ranger changed pretty radically between 1st and 2nd, especially when there seemed to be one character that drove the change to the class. Rangers suddenly couldn't use arcane magic or wear heavy armor, and rangers using two handed weapons seemed strange since it didn't play to the class abilities anymore.

In fact, one thing I really like about PFRPG and the ranger is that there is kind of a throwback to the ranger being the guy to keep watch because he's harder to surprise, et al, in reference to the favored terrain bonuses.

I also don't mind if the mechanics are different but what they do in game is the same. The exact plus of a ranger's favored enemy isn't so much a big deal as the fact that they have a favored enemy, for example.

Sovereign Court

I intimately know the answers to these questions because I've been here through it all. So have you, Knight Errant Jr.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

Abraham spalding wrote:
The only thing I'm not really happy with is the half orc. It just doesn't feel right with a +2 as choosen. I really did like the +2 str -2 Int +2 wis. That felt good and right for half orcs to me.

The new half-orc really depends on what they do with the "Orc." If, for example, the Orc now has the +2 Str, -2 Int, +2 Wis then the half-orc works with what they have done.


Pax Veritas wrote:
I intimately know the answers to these questions because I've been here through it all. So have you, KnightErrantJR.

Well, I know what the Paizo crew have said, and I haven't seen anything that dissuades me from thinking they have been pretty up front on what they want to achieve. On the other hand, I was kind of curious to see if anyone had any substantive items that they wanted to throw into the discussion that causes them to doubt the above.


For example, if clerics gain the ability to use, say, a spear or a dagger, it doesn't really invalidate a cleric running around with a mace. Similarly, letting dwarves be wizards doesn't mean that an existing dwarf fighter has changed any, or if a gnome has a different favored class that it changes a gnome illusionist any.

After 10 years I'm still not entirely comfortable with clerics using edged weapons and dwarves tossing wizard spells. Just feels icky.

Scarab Sages

Lord Fyre wrote:
Abraham spalding wrote:
The only thing I'm not really happy with is the half orc. It just doesn't feel right with a +2 as choosen. I really did like the +2 str -2 Int +2 wis. That felt good and right for half orcs to me.
The new half-orc really depends on what they do with the "Orc." If, for example, the Orc now has the +2 Str, -2 Int, +2 Wis then the half-orc works with what they have done.

The problem with Half-Orcs in 3rd Edition was that it was better better (at least in situations you would want a half-orc for) to play using a full Orc or a Human (sort of like Half-Elf versus Elf or Human). Now I think the two can exist peacefully together, even with no changes to the Orc.


KnightErrantJR wrote:
I guess what I'm wondering is, do people really think that any of the changes that Paizo instituted had to do with intentionally trying to shift the feel of the game, or if the changes just happened to have that effect for some people?

I'm not sure about Paizo's intentions, but the first six or seven sessions we've played have certainly felt one heck of a lot like D&D. What I have played of 4e doesn't feel like D&D, though. It's an interesting game, but not D&D. (I'm not trying to troll about 4e, that's my honest opinion and part of what has driven me towards pathfinder.)

What I think Paizo (and the thousands of us who helped playtest it) has done is really clarify the roles the classes play and create a solid baseline of balance upon which each DM can build a world and a story of their own with little effort.

Not everyone agrees with the basic roles they've chosen for all the classes, especially with regards to the Cleric. The Cleric is an example of the Paizo staff stepping outside the Holy Box of Tradition and looking at the class objectively.

So I guess I'd say there has, to some degree, been a slight paradigm shift as far as what we'd consider the "baseline rules". However, what's also there is a segmented and clearly-defined set of rules. For instance, if you don't like the rules for buying magic items in cities, those rules aren't tangled up in other rules which would snap one by one if you altered them. Everything seems easily malleable for different styles of play.

If this game remains as streamlined at 16th level as it is for me at 6th level, then I might start arguing that 3.P is more D&D than 3.5.

Yes, I used "D&D" as an adjective. :)


I will say that, while I wasn't happy with the armor change to clerics (already documented elsewhere, due to "not taking anything away" and less about game balance or anything of that nature), when playing my cleric in PRPG rules, there wasn't much of a major change. While some of the specific rules changed, for the most part, it didn't feel too much different that my cleric had up to that point.

I agree, it will be interesting to see how this plays out as we go up in levels.


I feel the changes Paizo made were indeed done with the intention of making the game different form 3.5. What those complaining about the changes and calling it a conspiracy to destroy the traditions of D&D are missing is they had to do it!


  • Paizo wasn't on board with 4.0.
  • They wanted to stick with 3.5, but that required the rule set to be in print.
  • The company that owns the rights to the non OGL parts of it pretty much killed it for 4.0.
  • Paizo decided to print their own ruleset (since the bulk it is OGL)
  • To be economically viable, they would need to get people who already have the 3.5 rules to buy the new rules.
  • The new rules needed to be different enough from 3.5 to justify spending the money on them to people who already had the 3.5 rules.
  • Paizo tried to keep the changes in the realm of 'improved' without "more powerful with new brokenness and bigger numbers".

Pathfinder is different from 3.5 due to necessity not malice. It is still recognizable as D&D to those familiar with older editions. It's different, but still basically the same game.

There is one tradition of D&D that is being overlooked - CHANGE!


  • Elf used to be a class, not a race.
  • Classes had minimum stat requirements.
  • Races had level limits for certain classes.
  • Stats were 3d6 in order.
  • Weapon Speed.
  • THAC0.

None of these things were in 3.5, indicating that change happens between versions. Change is just as much a tradition of D&D as Vancian casting.

And for the record, I am generally happy with the results of Pathfinder. So far most of my "Why did they..." reactions have been "Why did they NOT change that?"


KnightErrantJR wrote:
I guess what I'm wondering is, do people really think that any of the changes that Paizo instituted had to do with intentionally trying to shift the feel of the game,

I would say yes.

Many of the changes feel like MMO style changes. Note, I'm not comparing Pathfinder to a MMO, but the style of changes are like that.

What I mean is, there is group A constantly complaining about X. So the idea is to fix X, by changing L. Then it is figured that M would be good too. And then, just for good measure, N and O are done as well. That should quiet down group A.

Oh, now group B is upset? Tough s&!#.

All of this, and change L would have been enough to fix the problem, and keep almost every one happy.

There are a couple of areas in Pathfinder that this happened to. And they are all areas that people screamed their heads off about in 3.5.

So it does seem like the feel of the game shifted.


If the only shift in paradigm is in regards to the people who make the game caring more about putting out a quality gaming product than shaking up the oldskool, then I'm all about paradigm shifts.

Scarab Sages

That's a lot of letters. I'm not sure what changes you feel are MMO-style? The Paladin Smite Evil is about all I can think of.


Jal Dorak wrote:
That's a lot of letters. I'm not sure what changes you feel are MMO-style? The Paladin Smite Evil is about all I can think of.

I'll answer only if you agree to not accuse me of bringing he same arguments up. :-P

  • The Paladin
  • The Cleric
  • The Spiked Chain
  • Polymorph (again)
  • The Half-Orc

All of these things were "overdone." 12 changes (arbitrary number) when one or maybe two would have sufficed.

Scarab Sages

Disenchanter wrote:
Jal Dorak wrote:
That's a lot of letters. I'm not sure what changes you feel are MMO-style? The Paladin Smite Evil is about all I can think of.

I'll answer only if you agree to not accuse me of bringing he same arguments up. :-P

  • The Paladin
  • The Cleric
  • The Spiked Chain
  • Polymorph (again)
  • The Half-Orc

All of these things were "overdone." 12 changes (arbitrary number) when one or maybe two would have sufficed.

Maybe it's late and I'm tired, but while I agree those things were changed a great deal, and they are among many changes, what exactly about them was MMO-style?

(And no, I don't care if we rehash old posts - this is our discussion after all.)


Jal Dorak wrote:
Maybe it's late and I'm tired, but while I agree those things were changed a great deal, and they are among many changes, what exactly about them was MMO-style?

The MMO style comes in to play when multiple changes were made per item, and that it was done so (overkill style) just to quiet a group of vocal people.

Maybe I'm too much of a cook. You can't "take back" spices, so you never add too much at one time to keep from hurting your dish.


I think when you look at it, the guys at Paizo have a much better grasp on what D&D is that WotC. I started playing waaaay back when dwarves and elves were a class, and the game came in a box. Then came along an advanced version, which changed some(as in you didn't need to read the glossary to understand the to hit section) mechanics, but kept the same spirit, with a few changes. Then a second version of the advanced came along, and it was mostly (mostly!!!) rules updates, some clarifications, and some streamlining. Some things did change (for better or worse...I'm not going into that)...but mechanically things stayed similar and familiar.

And then 3rd came out. Unlike the previous versions, 3rd was a complete and total overhaul. The mechanics changed, substantionally in a lot of cases (oh, say, combat...), but even more than that, the look and feel and spirit of what things were changed. I'm not saying it was bad...D&D is and was a fantasy game, and the fantasy genre in writing and books has changed in all this time. So...we had a complete system overhaul, but in alot of cases, it seems like the overhaul was done rather arbitrarily, less to promote role playing, and more for some disillusioned concept od equality and balance (sorry, I'm all for striving for that as a goal, but equality and balance ranks right up with perfection for me...good to strive for, but have no illusions about succeeding).

And now we end up with Pathfinder...which, to me, has the same spirit, the same feel, as the game I grew up on, with mechanics and rules that fit a little better to modern fantasy. Is it a big change for alot fo the people that got onboard with 3rd ed...probably, because they want to know why such and such class which has always had such and such feature lost it, or had it altered, when in alot of ways, it returned to its roots.

All in all...I have say...I hope Paizo keeps with the mentality.


Disenchanter wrote:
Jal Dorak wrote:
Maybe it's late and I'm tired, but while I agree those things were changed a great deal, and they are among many changes, what exactly about them was MMO-style?

The MMO style comes in to play when multiple changes were made per item, and that it was done so (overkill style) just to quiet a group of vocal people.

Maybe I'm too much of a cook. You can't "take back" spices, so you never add too much at one time to keep from hurting your dish.

No such thing as too much of a cook =)

And I think WotC MMO styled it more than anyone.

Yeah, Paizo made some changes, but many of the changes were, generally speaking, minor (clerical armor proficiency, spiked chains) that if you prefer it the old way, its terribly hard to rule it back to 3.5.

Some of the changes were less minor, and with anything that isn't a minor change, its impossible to please everyone. Spell changes, a couple complete class overhauls (paladin for example), some combat mechanics, all those are hard to handwave back to the way they were before, but I think (right now) its a bit early to be saying it was too much. After the Bestiary comes out, and you've read it, make your mind up then. Alot of what people seem to be basing all this on is the 3.5 version of the game...and we don't even know what the PFRPG monsters will look like as a whole.

Not saying you have to like it (we can have our opinions, they don't have to be the same), but at least give it a fair shake before saying they went to far.

RPG Superstar 2010 Top 32

Freesword wrote:


There is one tradition of D&D that is being overlooked - CHANGE!

  • Elf used to be a class, not a race.
  • Classes had minimum stat requirements.
  • Races had level limits for certain classes.
  • Stats were 3d6 in order.
  • Weapon Speed.
  • THAC0.

None of these things were in 3.5, indicating that change happens between versions. Change is just as much a tradition of D&D as Vancian casting.

I was just about to say this (though probably in more words).

If Paizo had confined itself exclusively to what has been done in previous editions, that in itself would have been a drastic and detrimental paradigm shift.

My impression so far of Pathfinder- that is, the elements of the game which are distinctly PATHFINDER (as pulled apart from the changes that are linear evolutions from 3.5), is that it has less of a vidoegame-ey feel and more of a pulp-action-movie feel.

The (completely) new feats, barbarian rage powers, sorcerous bloodlines, etc. are all elegant and inspiring additions to the game which do nothing to disrupt or invalidate existing archetypes.

This is a new edition written by people who loved the old one.


I still just want to play the #*%& out of it for a while, then see what I think.
Players will always find various exploits and ways to take advantage of various rules. It's pretty different from 3.5, while keeping the classic feel of the older game, for me.

Take it through levels 1-20 a few times, and see how things really work for everyone. I'm thinking a lot of the things that were seen as useless, overly changed, or potential problems may not be.

Or, I may eat my words! (:-0


It certainly looks like DND to me. Magic Missiles still auto-strike their targets (I think) and Vampires are still stronger than regular humans (I think).

As far as Clerics losing heavy armor prof. DND was going that way anyway. The Favored Soul only gots medium armor even though the class is even more based towards melee than the Cleric. Clerics in 4E are two armor steps away from full plate. I still can't figure out why this is even remotely important to anyone.

So someone who shapechanges doesn't automatically get the exact stats of the creature they turned into. Should they? Probably not. If you're a clutz or a total weakling in "real life", you're probably going to be in animal form too.

So death spells don't kill you anymore. Okay, this one still blows my mind. I got nothing.

Trust me. 4E made it two weeks with my group. They won't even give it a fair chance. Why? Because it's not DND. They didn't even blink when I showed them Pathfinder.

Liberty's Edge

Disenchanter wrote:
Jal Dorak wrote:
Maybe it's late and I'm tired, but while I agree those things were changed a great deal, and they are among many changes, what exactly about them was MMO-style?
The MMO style comes in to play when multiple changes were made per item, and that it was done so (overkill style) just to quiet a group of vocal people.

So, if I understand correctly:


  • You do NOT mean they made changes to PLAY like a MMO.
  • You mean they made changes like a MMO-programming team makes to keep certain groups of players happy; MMO's typically make a great number of small and willy-nilly changes with "unintended consequences".

Just making sure. It seems people on her thought you meant down the path of the first point.

Quote:
Maybe I'm too much of a cook. You can't "take back" spices, so you never add too much at one time to keep from hurting your dish.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
KnightErrantJR wrote:


For what its worth, I was never happy that the ranger changed pretty radically between 1st and 2nd, especially when there seemed to be one character that drove the change to the class. Rangers suddenly couldn't use arcane magic or wear heavy armor, and rangers using two handed weapons seemed strange since it didn't play to the class abilities anymore.

For my part, I always thought it a rather strange image to imagine a woodland's warrior in plate armor, who was also casting magic missles. the class always felt like a fighter that had been grated on extra tricks he did not deserve or which properly fit. The changes in 3.x created what the character should have been a nonclanking mobile figure who uses the woods for stealth and protection while sizing up his opposition for a strike.


I don't get any sense from Paizo like what the OP is suggesting - to me Paizo is far more "retro" 1e flavor than going out of the D&D tradition.


Majuba wrote:
I don't get any sense from Paizo like what the OP is suggesting - to me Paizo is far more "retro" 1e flavor than going out of the D&D tradition.

I simply don't agree. I seem it as something entirely different to me. It has some parts that remind me of second edition, but not 1st.


LazarX wrote:
For my part, I always thought it a rather strange image to imagine a woodland's warrior in plate armor, who was also casting magic missles. the class always felt like a fighter that had been grated on extra tricks he did not deserve or which properly fit. The changes in 3.x created what the character should have been a nonclanking mobile figure who uses the woods for stealth and protection while sizing up his opposition for a strike.

This is something that think that a lot of people end up forgetting. There's nothing wrong with traditions in DND but those traditions change and usually for the betterment of the game.

Rangers have become what they should be: nimble and stealthy woodsman warriors. None of us are arguing that they should bring back the d10, full plate wearing, two sword swinging, full arcane casting Rangers of yesteryear. I'll bet that in a few years, we'll be looking back on CoDzilla going, "Man, I can't believe they let us get away with that!".

Paizo Employee Creative Director

My main hope and desire for the Pathfinder RPG was that when we switched over from 3.5 that I'd be able to still create Adventure Paths with the same feel as we had under 3.5. I'm halfway through Council of Thieves and, as far as I can tell, building adventures is more or less the same. Were Council of Thieves built for 3.5, I would be doing the exact same things I'm doing with it under the Pathfinder RPG.

So from where I'm sitting, there's not been a paradigm shift at all.


James Jacobs wrote:

My main hope and desire for the Pathfinder RPG was that when we switched over from 3.5 that I'd be able to still create Adventure Paths with the same feel as we had under 3.5. I'm halfway through Council of Thieves and, as far as I can tell, building adventures is more or less the same. Were Council of Thieves built for 3.5, I would be doing the exact same things I'm doing with it under the Pathfinder RPG.

So from where I'm sitting, there's not been a paradigm shift at all.

Out of curiosity, when you guys were writing up the Pathfinder Core Book, did you all look solely at 3.0 and 3.5 for inspiration and ideas, or did you guys also look back to what came before, the good old fashioned red box and 1st and 2nd ADnD?

Scarab Sages

BobSlaughter wrote:
Disenchanter wrote:
Jal Dorak wrote:
Maybe it's late and I'm tired, but while I agree those things were changed a great deal, and they are among many changes, what exactly about them was MMO-style?
The MMO style comes in to play when multiple changes were made per item, and that it was done so (overkill style) just to quiet a group of vocal people.

So, if I understand correctly:


  • You do NOT mean they made changes to PLAY like a MMO.
  • You mean they made changes like a MMO-programming team makes to keep certain groups of players happy; MMO's typically make a great number of small and willy-nilly changes with "unintended consequences".

Just making sure. It seems people on her thought you meant down the path of the first point.

Quote:
Maybe I'm too much of a cook. You can't "take back" spices, so you never add too much at one time to keep from hurting your dish.

Thanks for the clarification. Both posts helped me see what you were saying, and in some cases I agree (for example, the paladin) but I think that the changes, while perhaps many at once, fit into the existing scheme of the game (same example, basing Mercy on Lay on Hands).

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

Having run through a couple sessions of the Pathfinder RPG now, the only major changes I've noticed from 3.5 is that: 1) low-level spellcasters are a lot less worried about running out of spells, 2) the favored class bonus can be used to make tougher wizards or moderately skillful fighter, and 3) NPC design seems slightly easier than in the past.

Granted, this is all low-level adventuring, but I haven't really noticed any major change in the feel of the game so far.


Frogboy wrote:

It certainly looks like DND to me. Magic Missiles still auto-strike their targets (I think) and Vampires are still stronger than regular humans (I think).

As far as Clerics losing heavy armor prof. DND was going that way anyway. The Favored Soul only gots medium armor even though the class is even more based towards melee than the Cleric. Clerics in 4E are two armor steps away from full plate. I still can't figure out why this is even remotely important to anyone.

So someone who shapechanges doesn't automatically get the exact stats of the creature they turned into. Should they? Probably not. If you're a clutz or a total weakling in "real life", you're probably going to be in animal form too.

So death spells don't kill you anymore. Okay, this one still blows my mind. I got nothing.

Trust me. 4E made it two weeks with my group. They won't even give it a fair chance. Why? Because it's not DND. They didn't even blink when I showed them Pathfinder.

I agree with all your points here (including the last one, although in this case, you'd have to substitute "me" for "my group" ;)!).

I'd also like to say that it has more of a 2nd edition feel to me, also, and I played 2nd edition happily for years. It's like 2e with all the best ideas of 3e added in, while balancing out the classes and making things run more smoothly in a lot of little ways. I haven't been running the final version long here, but I and my group are enjoying it and yes, it feels thoroughly like D&D to us.

Scarab Sages

I had one player, long time fan of 2nd Edition and disliked learning 3rd, comment that:

a) This was the first time he had ever played a druid, but he loved the changes and how easy everything was to find.

b) He hates doing skills. So much so it was a running joke for 10 years for him to "Do your skills!" He looked at me mid-creation and said "Holy crap, I'm done my skills!" and then "Cool! I get to pick skills for my dinosaur!"

c) He didn't want to play initially, but I bribed him. We played for 3 hours until well past midnight.


James Jacobs wrote:

My main hope and desire for the Pathfinder RPG was that when we switched over from 3.5 that I'd be able to still create Adventure Paths with the same feel as we had under 3.5. I'm halfway through Council of Thieves and, as far as I can tell, building adventures is more or less the same. Were Council of Thieves built for 3.5, I would be doing the exact same things I'm doing with it under the Pathfinder RPG.

So from where I'm sitting, there's not been a paradigm shift at all.

I can respect that.

But a similar statement could be said of L5R through it's edition changes.
Making adventures for it wouldn't change much, if at all. But there is a distinct paradigm shift between each of the editions.


Frogboy wrote:
LazarX wrote:
For my part, I always thought it a rather strange image to imagine a woodland's warrior in plate armor, who was also casting magic missles. the class always felt like a fighter that had been grated on extra tricks he did not deserve or which properly fit. The changes in 3.x created what the character should have been a nonclanking mobile figure who uses the woods for stealth and protection while sizing up his opposition for a strike.

This is something that think that a lot of people end up forgetting. There's nothing wrong with traditions in DND but those traditions change and usually for the betterment of the game.

Rangers have become what they should be: nimble and stealthy woodsman warriors. None of us are arguing that they should bring back the d10, full plate wearing, two sword swinging, full arcane casting Rangers of yesteryear. I'll bet that in a few years, we'll be looking back on CoDzilla going, "Man, I can't believe they let us get away with that!".

I actually do think rangers should go back more towards what they used to be, including full armor and arcane spellcasting. I probably have a very different (and probably unusual) view of what a ranger should be though. Of course I also think rangers should never have had divine spellcasting.

I think change is not always a good thing. I like a lot of how the game was in 1e, and think those things should never have changed. On the other hand I like 3e better in general. I don't think that traditions should be kept for traditions sake. Clerics not being limited to blunt weapons for instance is in fact IMO a progressive change.

In general I do think Paizo have a great respect for the traditions of D&D, despite changing a few things that I did not agree with like cleric's heavy armor. There are even some things I hope they do change when they get around to releasing a new edition.


(edited)
It seems to me that there has been an attempt at a paradigm shift, at least in terms of trying to make core classes function in line with what might be expected from some of the archtypes. EG The Paladin is now a guy who (in metagame terms) evil creatures have good reason to be scared of, the Fighter now masters and does things with weapons beyond what most other classes are incapable of outside of specific circumstances, etc...
How successful this attempt to shift the function of characters has been remains to be seen.

As to traditions, I'm not sure that 'traditions' is a helpful word to bring to this discussion, or not in the context of 'D&D'. With regard to being 'D&D' Pathfinder RPG is in a situation of being both 'D&D' and 'not-D&D' due to various intellectual property and legal issues, and due to these having to have 'clear water'* between it and the property of another company.
Furthermore, discussions on other threads seem to indicate to me that the sort of desired continuity implied (to me) by the word 'tradition' is by no means agreed on, not even in matters such as clerics and heavy armour. (PLEASE I am not inviting discussion of that particular topic again here. There are already enough other threads about it in my opinion - I am simply mentioning it to indicate that not everyone can agree over whether or not something is a 'tradition'.)
And even if something has been a 'tradition' to what extent does that/should it afford it protection from change? Where and how does overlap between a 'tradition' and a 'sacred cow' occur? Who (if anyone) should be the final arbiter in determining/defining where such overlap occurs (if any) and where to heed it and where to ignore it? Has there even been enough time (and different generations of gamers) for something which could truly be regarded as a 'tradition' to have become established?
I think there is too much latitude and opinion involved in to what extent PFRPG is 'D&D' and what is/isn't a tradition (and if that should matter) for me to have anything except uncertainty to post on that side of the topics of this thread.

* I have borrowed this phrase from the sport of rowing.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

Paizo is taking advantage of the paradigm shift in licensing that WotC made when they made 3.x open content. But PF is no paradigm shift from 3.5. Even the biggest changes made in the rules are FAR short of what would be required to trip the buzz phrase.

1 to 50 of 356 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | next > last >>
Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder First Edition / General Discussion / Paradigm Shift or Not? Pathfinder and D&D Traditions All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.