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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Advanced Player's Guide Hardcover – July 19, 2016

4.7 out of 5 stars 118 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Series: Pathfinder Roleplaying Game
  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Paizo Publishng Inc.; 2nd Printing edition (July 19, 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1601252463
  • ISBN-13: 978-1601252463
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.9 x 10.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (118 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #26,416 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As an unrepentant nerd, I don't have an issue saying that I've got a few pen & paper games under my belt. I've played everything Wizards of the Coast came out with since 2000, have a fair bit of experience of AD&D, and some other, less prominent games as well. Chances are, if you're looking at this book, you've already played Paizo Publishing's Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, a game which many consider to be the spiritual successor to the Dungeons & Dragons saga. This book, in addition to presenting six new base classes to entice you with, also has taken the core classes (Barbarian through Wizard) and given each, on average about ten, ways to customize those base classes to whatever it is you've been dreaming of seeing your character doing. Do you like the ranger, but also like Animorphs? Now, you can take the ranger and turn him into an animal shape-shifter! Are you a fan of the paladin, but never find yourself using his small spell list? Trade spell-casting in for an aura of light that provides aid to you and your allies using the Warrior of the Holy Light archetype! Other options include the Drunken Master Monk, the court bard, the rake rogue, a slew of sub domains for clerics, new bloodlines for sorcerers, and sub-schools for wizards. There's something for every class.

Next, this book almost doubles the list of available feats. Remember that scene in Lord of the Rings where Legolas is firing arrows at the orc horde and suddenly takes an arrow and stabs an enemy that gets too close, before loading that same arrow and firing again? There's a feat for that. Do you like casting acid arrow at that demon over yonder, but hate his unnaturally lucky spell resistance rolls? Take another stab at evil when your spell bounces off and hits the next nearby enemy!
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Format: Hardcover
The Pathfinder RPG's latest offering is an excellent addition to the game: a must-have. This book is very similar to the splatbooks that Wizards of the Coast (WotC) released for D&D 3.5, but without being confined to a small group of classes (and, frankly, without the garbage). The primary expanded areas are the addition of six new base classes, additional feats, additional class options, additional racial options, spells, prestige classes and combat options.

The class and racial options are primarily substitution-based. They work on the principal of swapping a power for another, in most cases. This feels a lot better to me than defining a new race that is marginally different and trying to shoehorn them into an existing campaign world, as WotC has done many times. As for the class options, the substitutions are usually a package. The Ranger is expanded by adding several new combat styles (which I love, by the way), for example. The cleric options are the addition of subdomains, which are easy to integrate becaus the existing domains each have 2-3 associated subdomains which swap domain powers. I've always loved the idea of customizing characters, and I feel this book really opens up possibilities.

The new classes are excellent. I admit that I am not crazy about the Alchemist, but the others are top-notch. The remaining additions are the Cavalier (a fighter-type with bardic powers, focusing on challenging single foes and inspiring friends), the Inquisitor (a deity-sworn hunter), the Summoner (class focused on summoning a pet; think World of Warcraft Warlock), the Oracle (a divination-themed spontaneous divine caster) and the Witch (a hex-throwing caster whose familiar is her living spellbook).
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The APG adds a ton of new options for players, including new base classes, alternate class features for older base classes, new feats, spells, prestige classes, and so on. There's also new items, magical equipment, and optional rules for groups that want to change things up a little bit. The best part is that overall they're very well balanced; I could complain that some of the options are a little underpowered, actually, but nothing sticks out to me as being overpowered (certainly nothing comes as close as, say, Candles of Invocation, which are in the core rulebook!).

Pathfinder seems to be taking an opposite approach from 3.5 D&D to some class balance issues; in 3.5, most of the base classes were terribly weak beyond the low levels, and there was no reason to not go into prestige classes as soon as possible. Pathfinder has significantly improved upon the base classes and toned down the prestige classes, to the point that in some cases there is little reason to take levels in a particular prestige class unless you just really like the flavor of it.

My most significant complaint is that some of the new options seem redundant. The oracle, for example, in terms of mechanics is very much like a cleric but just not as good. The flavor of the class is nice, sure, but flavor and mechanics can be kept separate; there's nothing stopping somebody from putting "cleric" on their character sheet but dressing up as and calling themselves an oracle in-game. Summoner has a similar problem in that it's just too similar to the basic wizard class; they have a fun, unique mechanic, but it seems like it could have easy been done as a prestige class for wizards instead.
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