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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook Hardcover – August 19, 2009

4.7 out of 5 stars 627 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Series: Pathfinder Roleplaying Game
  • Hardcover: 576 pages
  • Publisher: Paizo (August 19, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1601251505
  • ISBN-13: 978-1601251503
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 1.3 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (627 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,234 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Robert A. Howard on August 21, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Weighing in at nearly five pounds and spanning over 576 pages, the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook combines all of the rules that were previously split between the D&D 3.5 Players Handbook and Dungeon Masters Guide. It is everything that you are going to need to play except for the Pathfinder Bestiary, which is not scheduled to be released until October 2009. Until then, you'll need to break out your old 3.5 edition monster manuals or use the monsters in the d20 SRD. You can download the SRD for free over at wizards.com, or for an easy to use online version, check out the Hypertext d20 SRD online at [...]

* The Core Classes of Pathfinder *
Paizo put a lot of effort into spicing up all of the original 3.5e classes with new and exciting abilities. Many of the classes now have multiple paths that a player can follow to help make distinguish their character from the teeming masses of other adventurers of the same class. This is very reminiscent of what Fourth Edition did, and it is one of the things I really liked. You'll especially see this featured with the druid, cleric, paladin, ranger, rogue, sorcerer, and wizard classes.

I was also impressed by how much the game rewards the player who sticks it out and levels his character through all twenty levels of his core class. In the past, there has often been very little incentive (or sense in some cases) to do so. With Pathfinder, not only does your character receive an extra hitpoint or skill-point every level just for leveling in his favored class, but the game does an excellent job of providing all kinds of cool abilities at the highest levels.
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Format: Hardcover
Following the release of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook Paizo comes up with the Bestiary. Since the Pathfinder is a refreshed, upgraded D&D 3.5, there was no question that the Monster Manual needs an update as well.

===PRESENTATION===

A solid sewn hardcover book with over 320 pages in full color. As usual, the artwork and layout is above and beyond. Paizo books have their unique art style, and it shows. There are several navigational aids, including indexes and CR tables. The book is a pleasure to look at and use.

===CONTENT===

The Pathfinder Bestiary offers circa 350 monsters for use in Pathfinder games. A quick glance at the index shows that the vast majority of monsters from 3.5 Monster Manual are here. Several are missing, be them either intellectual property of WotC (beholders, mind flayers, giths, displacer beasts, carrion crawlers, kuo-toa) or left out as particularly unpopular (tojanida, delver).

However, there are also monsters not found in the original MM - among others such fantasy classics as Cyclopi, Giant Slugs and Sea Serpents. A few classic D&D monsters, made open content via Tome of Horrors are here as well - Vegepygmies, Dark Creepers and Shadow Demons, to name a few.

Curiously, the fantasy classic Hippogrifs are missing, likely an oversight.

The monsters are presented in 1 page = 1 monster format, making the book far easier to use than the 3.5 MM. All the critters received a major refurbishing, with vital stats adjusted for the new rules.
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Format: Hardcover
If you are familiar with 3.x branch of Dungeon & Dragons then you'll already have a firm grasp of the Pathfinder RPG. Some are even calling it D&D 3.75E---which is not far from the truth. Much has already been written about D&D 3.x so I'll keep this short and simple.

First the book itself comprises both Players Hand Book and GM Guide which makes a very big book. It's logically organized with a concise Table of Contents and Index so information should not be hard to find. There is some nice consistent art work but not so much that it distracts from the content.

One of Pathfinder's design goals was to make it compatible with 3.5E rules---so we can keep our extensive 3.5 Edition libraries with minimal conversion effort, in this it succeeds pretty well. Classes, skills, feats, spells, prestige classes are quick and easy to upgrade. Most monsters can be converted by just calculating Combat Maneuver Bonus (CMB) and Combat Maneuver Defense (CMD). Don't take my word for it, the Paizo website has a free 3.5 Conversion Guide PDF that covers simple guidelines for making most any kind of conversion.

The Core Classes have cool new options and seem very well balanced. I'm specially enamored with some of the new options for the wizard ( which has always been my favored class ).

The rules for skills and feats have been nicely streamlined.

Combat has been simplified with a new single mechanic which allows for clarified special attacks (grapple, disarm, trip, etc).

A reworked experience system allows for slow, medium, and fast character advancement (My players and I really like the ability to control and fine tune the tempo of a campaign).

With Pathfinder, rules for the 3.
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