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Nexis
05-14-2009, 03:20 PM
Hi Y'all.

Now that the 3.5 vs 4e thread is getting along fine I was interested in a thread open to comparing 3.5 to the new Pathfinder game.
I have the Beta version and had a quick look and so far I like what I see.
What I would like to do is invite those who have also looked over the game and also some who have played it to come in and tell us what you feel is good and not so good and also the differences between the games. :D

Sirith
05-14-2009, 03:39 PM
I downloaded the beta version quite a while ago, just to see what they had back then.

To be honest, I was mostly interested in the art, which was very nice, compared to some 3.5e art. Especially the class pictures caught my eye, the monk even made me want to play a monk (which is a class I don't like) because the character looked so cool. Wayne Reynolds (Y).

Other than that, I'm interested in what they changed, but I'll never see it in play. Unless my DM suddenly decides to adopt it, which I don't see happening any time soon, it's very much out of my reach.

Gamerprinter
05-14-2009, 03:39 PM
While I'm not Pathfinder expert, I have been using the Beta in our 3.5 games for about 6 months.

Grapple was always such a bear to work with in 3.5, I make a roll, opponent makes an opposing roll and then comparison to a chart is required to determine result. In Pathfinder, grapple is a single D20 roll, no opposed roll, once you know the associated chart, it easy to see right away whether you succeed or fail.

In fact all combat maneuvers: trip, bull rush, etc fall under the CMB or combat maneuvers base.

The Paladin's Smite Evil special ability meant you could apply the attempt on a given attack, if you fail to hit, you've used up one Smite Evil available for the day, as it works in 3.5. In Pathfinder, you select a target in combat to apply Smite Evil to. Until that target is defeated the initiating of the Smite Evil continues even for multiple rounds.

There's some fluff difference - Sorcerers have available up to 10 different bloodlines as "sources" of their sorcery, since sorcerers are born into the class. In 3.5 lineage source of power is discussed and perceived to exist, while in Pathfinder different bloodlines access different feats or powers later in a sorcerer's career based on bloodline.

The barbarian has a Rage Mechanic similar to the Smite Evil mechanic that gives lots more power and sustainability in combat. Making barbarians among the best martial classes.

Almost every spell has been tweaked in some small way to enhance both its mechanics and playability.

Oh, first level characters gain access to an additional feat, which bumps them to survive better at low levels.

Pathfinder actually borrows some ideas from 4e as well, its much easier to create encounters than in 3.5, some adventure development is much less time consuming. Much of Pathfinder is designed to streamline 3.5 play.

There are many other differences, but these are some of the more obvious ones.

Note: Paizo has said, the Beta was created to see how far they could depart from 3.5 and still feel like the same game. In the final publication in August, some of these departures will disappear and the final product will be a bit closer to original 3.5 vs the Beta version.

GP

torstan
05-14-2009, 03:54 PM
Can you expand a little on how they have streamlined adventure construction? Any routes for fast NPC construction? Any alterations to the CR, EL system?

Gamerprinter
05-14-2009, 04:13 PM
When I'm not a work I'll get more details, but regards tables in Pathfinder that converts CL to XP, and through a simple add up the levels of each player allows for a budget of XP values x level of difficulty to "purchase" opposing monsters based on that budget.

It really works well with varying levels of PCs in a party vs. varying levels of opponents like 1 BBEG and 2 to 10 lesser minions. Much faster to create encounters.

There is a third party "Pathfinder compatible" product coming out called Trailblazer that further develops this idea into a quick math exercise making it even easier.

I'll post more details tonight.

GP

Novarri
05-14-2009, 07:21 PM
Mm, after I looked around the 3.5 v. 4e forum and heard about Pathfinder, I downloaded the beta. I think I'm converted.

What I really like about what they've done is that they've made the classes a bit more unique. The fighter, for example, now has abilities nobody else can get (instead of just a lot of feats, only three of which were exclusive), and the bard is both a jack-of-all-trades and a skill monkey good enough to replace the rogue (the bard is almost...a worthwhile class to take ;)). And the skill mechanic that allows full ranks in all skill (with a bonus to class skills), I love. I've only skimmed most of it, but I like what I've seen.

I'm interested in hearing the rest of your post, GP, especially with regards to Trailblazer. Encounters have always stumped me, but I love Pathfinder's reverse-method (look at total XP and add up monsters to reach it; as opposed to the standard guess CRs and then find XP) as complicated as it is.

Gamerprinter
05-14-2009, 07:27 PM
Pathfinder Table 12-3 has XP values for all CRs, so any CR valued monster is supported.

Tables 12-1 and 12-2 uses kind of "fuzzy math" technique to build simple encounters.

Below, however, is Wulf Ratbane's modifications that improve the above method - to be published as Trailblazer, before Gencon 09, as an eventual supplement to Pathfinder.

Step One: Determine the Encounter Budget

For each PC in the party, look up his level, and add the indicated amount of XP to the encounter budget.

Example: Party of four 1st level PCs each add +100 to the budget; total budget = 400 XP.

Code:

Level XP Budget (per PC)
1 100
2 150
3 200
4 300
5 400
6 600
7 800
8 1200
9 1600
10 2400
11 3200
12 4800
13 6400
14 9600
15 12800
16 19200
17 25600
18 38400
19 51200
20 76800

Step Two: Determine Desired Difficulty

Multiply the total XP budget by the following multipliers:

Easy: x2/3 (-1 EL)
Average: x1
Challenging: x1.5 (+1 EL)
Hard: x2 (+2 EL)
Epic: x3 (+3 EL)

Example: Initial budget 400, challenging encounter x1.5, final budget = 600.

Step Three: Purchase Creatures from the Budget

Using the Creature XP values provided by Pathfinder, "purchase" creatures out of your encounter budget.

Code:

CR XP
1/10 40
1/8 50
1/6 65
1/4 100
1/3 135
1/2 200
1 400
2 600
3 800
4 1200
5 1600
6 2400
7 3200
8 4800
9 6400
10 9600
11 12800
12 19200
13 25600
14 38400
15 51200
16 76800
17 102400
18 153600
19 204800
20 307200
21 409600
22 614400
23 819200
24 1228800
25 1638400

NOTE 1: If you have to purchase more than 10 of any creature, it's probably not going to add much to the challenge of the encounter.

NOTE 2: Buy the most expensive creatures first. When you are done, if you have points left over, you can either toss them aside, or you can "overspend" just enough to buy one creature of the closest available amount.

Pathfinder Examples
These examples are taken directly from the Alpha 2 document.

Quote:
Letís say you want your group of four 5th-level characters to fight a group of ogres (CR 3).
Four 5th level characters each add 400 XP to the budget, for a total of 1600 XP.

An average fight (x1 budget multiplier, 1600 budget) is 2 ogres (CR3=800 each).

A challenging fight (x1.5 budget multiplier, 2400 budget) is 3 ogres.

A hard fight (x2 budget multiplier, 3200 budget) is 4 ogres.

An epic fight (x3 budget multiplier, 4800 budget) is 6 ogres.

Quote:
Letís say you want your group of six 8th-level PCs to face off against a group of gargoyles (CR 4) and their stone giant boss (CR 8). This is to be a challenging fight.
Six 8th level PCs is a base budget of 6 x 1200XP, or 7200 XP.

It's to be a challenging fight, x1.5, final budget = 10800 XP.

Stone Giant (CR8) costs us 4800 XP, leaving 6000 XP to spend on gargoyles.

Gargoyles cost 1200 XP each; 6000/1200 = five gargoyles

GP

PS: this system doesn't claim to fix any problems regarding CR in the first place, just in using existing CR monsters, they can be more quickly created using the method above.

ravells
05-14-2009, 07:31 PM
On the very rare occasions I play rpgs these days its totally free form. The story is is everything and the that's all that really counts.

Gamerprinter
05-15-2009, 01:03 AM
Really, on its own 4 equal level PCs, fighting 5 ogres is pretty straight forward, something you could almost do in your head. Where the system shines, however, is when you have a party of varying level PCs, say, 2 each 6th and 2 each 4th level characters and you're going to fight 4800 XP of ogres, instead of 6 normal ogres, try a 3rd level ogre barbarian chief and 3 standard ogre minions. Try doing that in your head, and you're more genius than I. Using the tables above make such a complicated level division and encounter creation easy, peesy!

And, yeah, Novarri mentioned something I forgot to say. The Skills list, in 3.5 you have access to your class skills, but then pay double for non-class skills. Not so in Pathfinder you can purchase any skills at equal cost, those skills that fall under your "class skills" get a +3 bonus, that's the only difference. This makes acquiring skills you want much easier and less expensive to "buy".

There are fewer skills than 3.5. Pathfinder rolled in Spot and Listen as the single Perception Skill, Hide and Move Silently in Stealth Skill. I think there are a few other 2 skills moved into one as well.

Rope Use is gone (anyone can use a rope, why do you need a skill for that?). Climbing is easier, especially for rogues, a single roll for entire climb, I believe.

Thought I'd add this information for the discussion.

GP

PS: Pathfinder has undergone a year of play-testing, making it one of the most tested systems in existence ever, which gives it better developmental control than other editions or systems.

Korash
05-15-2009, 12:34 PM
PS: Pathfinder has undergone a year of play-testing, making it one of the most tested systems in existence ever, which gives it better developmental control than other editions or systems.

Just to add to this, the play-test was open to the public and feed back was actually asked for. Paizo is very open to suggestions and are quite willing to explain why they did things one way and not the other. I have noticed a definate change in Pathfinder from the Alpha to the Beta and some of that was due to player feedback. The designer has even posted a few threads stating where he wants to go with things and asking for c & c on those directions. He has even changed a few directions based on some of the comments.

@ GP - very nice summary btw 8)

Nexis
05-15-2009, 08:13 PM
looking over the beta book I realy like what they did. I'm still gona get the 3.5 books first and wait till both the main book and the bestiary somes out in September and get them then. Also the price on the sight is $49 US for the book. on Amazon canada its $36 CAN. I'm gona get it from them. :!:

Gamerprinter
05-15-2009, 10:25 PM
Good luck in your attempt to find 3.5 books. The problem here is that WotC stopped production of all 3.5 material in June 2008, and all distributors stopped carrying and distributing those books at that same time. Most game stores have sold out the material and are not dedicated to distributing new books.

While OGL is certainly still valid, and new splat books are still being produced under that license. You can certainly find third party produced material, but not the core books: PH, PH2, DMG, the Monster Manuals.

I know that Cons often have stands offering older publications from previous editions and otherwise "used" material, which is probably your best bet in the hunt for 3.5 core rule books.

I hope you find them, but just a warning that you might not.

GP

Nexis
05-15-2009, 11:56 PM
Good luck in your attempt to find 3.5 books. The problem here is that WotC stopped production of all 3.5 material in June 2008, and all distributors stopped carrying and distributing those books at that same time. Most game stores have sold out the material and are not dedicated to distributing new books.

While OGL is certainly still valid, and new splat books are still being produced under that license. You can certainly find third party produced material, but not the core books: PH, PH2, DMG, the Monster Manuals.

I know that Cons often have stands offering older publications from previous editions and otherwise "used" material, which is probably your best bet in the hunt for 3.5 core rule books.

I hope you find them, but just a warning that you might not.

GP

Thats right. This weekend CanGames is on and I hope to get some from there.

Gamerprinter
05-16-2009, 01:32 AM
Aside from being able to find the core 3.5 material, the Pathfinder RPG handbook being officially published in August 2009, will replace 3.5 PH and DMG, so if don't find the core versions, if you can wait, you won't be left out in the cold.

A month ago or so, Paizo offered third party publishers to apply for a Pathfinder Compatibility logo license allowing them to create new subsystems and splat books for the Pathfinder system, including many of the recognized third parties that supported 3.5 core, like Necromancer Games. So many if not most of existing splat books for 3.5 will eventually be replaced by Pathfinder compatible versions - so you will eventually be able to find whatever splats you want to enhance your game (that you may not be able to find at this time.)

Though I've only been a professional cartographer in the RPG industry and never a publisher, I myself am venturing into the world of publishing, in a collaborative work with Dementia 5 Publishing in creating my own setting and adventure arcs, that will be published OGL next month, with intentions of republication in August under Pathfinder compatibility (as D5 is one of the recipient third parties awarded use of that license.)

So I too, will be developing material for Pathfinder. Perhaps some day you could purchase my contribution to that game system! ;)

GP

Nexis
05-16-2009, 07:59 AM
So I too, will be developing material for Pathfinder. Perhaps some day you could purchase my contribution to that game system! ;)

GP

I'd be more than happy to!

msa
05-16-2009, 09:34 AM
Good luck in your attempt to find 3.5 books.

I thought I'd mention again that you can get virtually all of the 3.5 rules for free at the many d20 system reference documents (SRD) published on the web. Here is my favorite:

http://www.d20srd.org/

Its no replacement for the books, IMO, but at least the rules are still available even if the books are hard to find.

Gamerprinter
05-16-2009, 10:32 AM
Yeah, thanks MSA - duh, I feel stupid! I didn't think of that in my deep explanation on the subject at hand. The SRD (system resource document) is the core rules for 3.5 and is free everywhere!

GP

msa
05-16-2009, 10:48 AM
Yeah, thanks MSA - duh, I feel stupid! I didn't think of that in my deep explanation on the subject at hand. The SRD (system resource document) is the core rules for 3.5 and is free everywhere!

I meant to mention that it does omit a few things. There are no rules for character creation, no experience point tables, and a no rules for small number of monsters that WotC defines as 'product identity' (beholder, giths, mind flayer, etc.. stuff D&D sort of made up).

On the other hand, it does include some books beyond the core 3... namely epic level handbook, deities and demigods, psionics handbook, and some of unearthed arcana.

I know it so well because I switched over to the online SRD entirely when 3 moved to 3.5... I bought the 3 core books when they first came out at $20 a pop and I didn't want to rebuy them for $35 again.

Leonal
05-19-2009, 12:17 PM
Hi,
I registred a few days ago after finding a new interest in mapping and must say there is a lot of great work and info here.

Regarding Pathfinder, my group is currently playing Red Hand of Doom and we recently ported it to Pathfinder. Love it! More abilites for the core classes makes it more enjoyable, both for players and GMs. I also like that they have three different tables for when you gain a level, so you can choose on that fits the pace of your campaign. Others here have mentioned a lot already and it's definitely worth checking out I think.

I've bought the Pathfinder Campaign Setting, and it's absolutely great. Lots of fluff and maps and good stuff. :)

-Leonal

jreyst
06-23-2009, 02:23 PM
I know this isn't specifically map related but I wanted to let people know about a new Pathfinder SRD site I started at http://www.d20pfsrd.com. There's also a Google Group at http://groups.google.com/group/d20pfsrd

Join if you want to receive messages about updates to the site or if you would like to comment or make suggestions regarding the site etc.

I'm also looking for contributors so if you have free time, it's really easy. You don't have to be a webmaster or know any html or web design to help since its on a Google Site.

I'm also interested in making any maps anyone would like to share available for download.

Let me know at jreyst@gmail.com if you want to contribute either help on the site or maps for downloads.

Thanks!

Gamerprinter
08-04-2009, 03:32 PM
Got an Email from Paizo this morning. The initial print run is SOLD OUT, including pre-orders, pre-orders through distributors and a number set aside to be sold at GENCON, they are all gone. They have placed a new order with intended delivery in early November.

They'd initially planned for this first print run to hold an inventory until December and Paizo says, they had big hopes, but the success so far is waaay past their expectations.

Looks like for the startup at least, Pathfinder RPG is a great success, and possibly a serious contender in RPGs vs. 4e. One can only hope!

GP

msa
08-04-2009, 04:00 PM
That's great news! I made a pass at selling my 3.5 group on pathfinder, and I think I'll make another one soon. Its hard to beat 3.5 for all the online SRDs (since we play using a VTT) but it sure would be nice to play with a couple bug fixes.

Edit: I just noticed the online SRD posted on the last page! Oops!

AslanC
08-04-2009, 04:07 PM
I am glad to hear they are doing so well! I always felt Paizo got the short end when WoTC yanked the Dragon and Dungeon magazine licenses from them.

Me though, I play Labyrinth Lord with some house rules. Never got into the d20 revolution.

But then I am a curmudgeon ;)

Notsonoble
08-04-2009, 07:38 PM
Another interesting note Pathfinder RPG is now #1 at Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/gp/bestsellers/books/16211/) sorted by popularity (but I'm not sure how amazon decides popularity)

AslanC
08-04-2009, 07:39 PM
(but I'm not sure how amazon decides popularity)

Complimentary lap-dances ;)

Notsonoble
08-04-2009, 07:42 PM
Complimentary lap-dances ;)

O.o umm... considering the people I've seen represent gaming companies at cons.... Amazon's taste is definitely on the "different" side...

Gamerprinter
08-04-2009, 07:59 PM
Another interesting note Pathfinder RPG is now #1 at Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/gp/bestsellers/books/16211/) sorted by popularity (but I'm not sure how amazon decides popularity)

Thanks for the link, I was going to wait until Gencon to purchase my copy, but I just ordered it from Amazon through that link, so mine will be on the way. I guess I just helped maintain its number one position at Amazon!

GP

Steel General
08-05-2009, 06:15 AM
Complimentary lap-dances ;)

Shhh...don't tell Ascension ;)

Ascension
08-05-2009, 06:53 PM
I must seek out these dancers of laps and rid the world of this evil...by keeping them in my boudoir. :)

Rogueleader89
08-06-2009, 08:51 PM
pathfinder looks so good.... but I'll likely never get my players to switch over to it :( .. had a hard enough time getting them to switch back to v3.5 from 4e

AslanC
08-06-2009, 08:54 PM
I am playing Labyrinth Lord right now, a retro-clone of B/X D&D and it is super fun :)

That said I wasn't happy with 3.5 and 3.75 isn't thrilling me at all. 4e can just get out of the conversation IMHO.

But like I said, good for Paizo. They have become the new TSR as far as I can see, which is exactly what the gaming world needed after WotC.

Notsonoble
08-06-2009, 09:45 PM
pathfinder looks so good.... but I'll likely never get my players to switch over to it :( .. had a hard enough time getting them to switch back to v3.5 from 4e

That's simple... tell them they have the option of building a pathfinder character... like it was a splatbook for 3.5 don't show them anything else... then once they've all realized how friggin sweet the pathfinder classes are, read the grapple rules aloud... they'll never turn back.