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December 14, 2011 / Wythe

Pathfinder

Don't sue me, Penny Arcade!  All respek; we just cracked up reading this...

Lulz.  (Seriously, don’t sue me, Penny Arcade; this is just a perfect cartoon, and I want all my PCs who’ve been killed by a Pathfinder-ed out “Old Testament” metal-vampire-dinosaur to experience it.)

So here’s the obligatory post about editions:  In fact, at first (before become obsessed with tinkering with RPG rules) I often wondered why other people write so much about what edition they play.  It don’t matter none.  Play what makes you happy.

Here’s why we play what we play:  We grew up with it.  Z (my actual bro[ther], plays the unhuman gladiator Rok Tok), P.D. (bff, plays the human hell scientist Zylla), P.M. (other bff, plays the green malmain Veli), and I grew up playing DnD 2nd Edition and caught just a whiff of 3rd Edition before late high school (read: dating) hit, and we stopped playing for a long, long time.

Now, crashing toward age 30, we play Pathfinder because, well, it’s fun.  To us.  But you should play what’s fun to you.  For me, the metal/steam aesthetic of Pathfinder was instantly appealing, and the rules are in some ways an upgrading of 2E/3E (which are very, very similar, compared to the original game and 4E, AKA Pen-and-Paper World of Warcraft).

Yes, in some ways Pathfinder successfully expands on 3E, adding nuance and meaning to psionics, feats, and those simple-seeming combat moves (ducking, rushing, grappling) that were once ultra-confusing to actually use in the middle of combat.

In other ways (skills, many rules-heavy aspects of class advancement, the native setting), it lets us down a little.  Big deal.  We made our own skills system.  We’re making our classes.  We play in our own world.

We’re just following the Golden Rule of Gaming—play what’s fun.  That could mean videogames, poker, Russian roulette, or, sigh, even 4th Edition.  For us, here, we’ll soldier on in the post-far-future, rolling lots of dice, doing a good bit of math, unperturbed—and having fun.

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