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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic game, very impressive book
An absolutley huge book! While it is easily recognized as a version of D&D 3.5, it does represent a big improvement in key areas. Classes no longer have "dead" levels, lower level characters are more survivable, combat manuevers such as grapple no longer need a phd in math to figure out. Quality of the book is impressive, with high production values throughout. It can...
Published on Jan. 21 2010 by Chris Papworth

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Book in non-mint condition
The book had some damaged page that I had to fix for them not to get worse. Aside from that i'm pretty happy with my purchase!
Published 14 months ago by Anthony Goulet


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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic game, very impressive book, Jan. 21 2010
By 
Chris Papworth (British Columbia, Canada) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook (Hardcover)
An absolutley huge book! While it is easily recognized as a version of D&D 3.5, it does represent a big improvement in key areas. Classes no longer have "dead" levels, lower level characters are more survivable, combat manuevers such as grapple no longer need a phd in math to figure out. Quality of the book is impressive, with high production values throughout. It can be a little intimidating for new players that have only played 4e, but man is it worth the effort! My group has switched over to Pathfinder, and even our newest players are so much more satisfied with what this book provides. This is what a tabletop RPG is suppose to be. Highly recommended, just don't throw out your back lugging this beast around!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The next logical evolution of D&D, Aug. 5 2010
This review is from: Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook (Hardcover)
While WotC decided to take a giant step backwards and turn their flagship RPG into little more than a slightly more in-depth version of their miniatures game, the people at Paizo picked up the flag where WotC had discarded it and carried it on with a brand new CRB. Pathfinder RPG is to D&D 3.5 what D&D 3.5 was to 3e. The skill system is streamlined, but not dumbed-down, the core races and classes have been tweaked based on years and years of play experience, and you can still use your D&D 3.5 splatbooks with little to no conversion necessary.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Quality and Detail, April 30 2010
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This review is from: Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook (Hardcover)
Having only played 1 or 2 sessions of D&D in my life, i was able to pick up this book and it all made sense. They don't presume you know anything of any role playing games. Everything is well laid out and indexed, lots of quick reference tables. Don't let the size intimidate you, its easy to find what you need.

The quality of the book itself is great, solid binding, good covers and great image quality. Very professionally done.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A mostly fixed 3.5 type game., Dec 11 2014
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This review is from: Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook (Hardcover)
Many regard Pathfinder as D&D 3.75. It was released after 3.5 was officially over, at about the same time as the debut of 4th edition. The Pathfinder ruleset has a lot of the 4th edition mechanics, but not all of them. The game is a lot closer to 3.0/3.5 than it is to 4th edition. There are the same basic classes (in the Core Rulebook) as are found in 3.0/3.5's Player's Handbook, classes like Fighters, Rogues, Wizards, Clerics, Druids, Bards, Barbarians, etc. There are twenty levels to the classes. There are prestige classes. There are feats and the skill system is mostly the same.

Perusing the book, I quickly noticed the quality was much higher than I was used to from the products of Wizard's of the Coast. The paper is a heavier grade and the artwork is phenomenal. The books have stood up to the wear and tear of a couple of years of play, as the pass it around the garage (man cave) set. (I have two copies of each book, one for the shared set and one for myself at home).

Mechanically, classes get a lot more for sticking it out to 20th, than they did in 3.5. There seems to be an ability, class feature, feat, or whatever granted at almost every level. There is also a capstone ability at 20th level for most classes. There is a favored class bonus, which grants you a bonus hit point or a bonus skill point at each level that you take a level in your favored class... (if you purchase the Advanced Player's Guide, there are alternate bonuses you can take instead.)

Feats are gained at every odd level, instead of at every third level. That gets each character 10 feats over 20 levels, as opposed to only 6 with the previous version of the game. That opens a lot of doors, as far as builds will go.

The classes seem quite a bit stronger than their 3.5 counterparts, particularly in terms of durability and staying power. If you're looking to multiclass between several classes, you end up with a character a lot stronger than the 3.5 version. However, if you stick with one class all the way, you're in general better off than cherry picking abilities here and there.

Archetypes are introduced in the Advanced Player's Handbook, which essentially let you modify your class by changing a core feature or replacing it with another. While that is not a part of the Core Rulebook, it is worth mentioning because is drastically increases the playability of the main book. You and I could each play a very different Druid merely by taking different Archetypes for that class.

There seems to be a lot more details of the rules than in 3.5. Basically, if you're looking for a rule on something a little more esoteric, there's a good chance you'll find a lot of topics covered in Pathfinder which were straight DM fiat in a previous edition of the game. The DM is still the final arbitrator of the game, subject of course to whether the players want to play in his/her game.

The skill system is a little condensed as well. For example Perception now covers Search, Spot and Listen as the one skill. This is true for several other skills too. Feats, such as Alertness grant a +2 bonus to your Perception and Sense Motive, and the feat scales by giving you a +4 bonus once you have 10 ranks in the skill. That improves the feat drastically as well.

Pretty much all of the options seem to be worthwhile choices.

There are much fewer broken abilities comparatively. Power Attack (and Deadly Aim, which does the same thing for Archery based characters) scales at a fixed rate. You lose +1 attack bonus, but gain +2 damage (or +3 with a two-handed weapon) per +1 that is given up. But the amount of attack that is sacrificed is at a fixed rate, not as much of your Base Attack as you'd like. This ensures your character still has a decent chance to hit, but also that you're not getting an absurd amount of bonus to damage from the one feat.

Melee have a lot more options, a large portion of that comes from having more feats, but each class gets additional features.... The Fighter gets Weapon Group training... which translates into a +1 Attack and Damage (and bonus to Combat Manuevers) with the entire group (Light Blades, Heavy Blades, Archery, Hammers, etc...) and over time you gain additional Weapon Training (which adds +1 to existing groups, while adding a new category). Fighters gain Bravery, which is a bonus to Will Saving throws. They gain Armor Training, which reduces the max Dex penalty associated with the armor along with the armor check penalty for their armor.

Casters are still weaker at lower levels and drastically stronger at higher levels. However, both Sorcerers (from the Bloodlines) and Wizards (from their Specialization) gain several uses per day of an ability that is comparable to a first level spell. Thematically, it is tied to your choice of Bloodline/Specialization. In practice it means that a Wizard does not have to resort to a Crossbow attack (at +0 BAB, and using a secondary stat... Dexterity... to hit) once they've used their one or two Magic Missile attacks per day. There are also unlimited uses of level 0 spells, which is similar to the idea of 'At Will' powers in fourth edition.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good to have but can live without it., Oct. 29 2014
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This review is from: Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook (Hardcover)
Essential to have, but I find it very haphazardly ordered. It seems to assume that the player has played D&D before but not everyone has (including me). It seems to skim over the basics of gameplay and character setup which a newbie like me may not be fully aware. It also uses terms in the beginning/basics that are not explained until way later or in another book.

I am happy I have it and it is available to me during campaign but I find myself googling most things I need or using the Paizo website. It just takes too long to find things in the book or it might not even be in there! But it is still nice to have. I'm kind of torn on the star rating but I will give it 4 since the quality of the book is good, it just needs a better organization applied. It is mostly just a supplement. A tablet/computer/phone with access to the Paizo or other websites would have all the same information with easier access to it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Need to buy!, Oct. 6 2010
This review is from: Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook (Hardcover)
I tried playing 4th Edition of D&D and was disappointed. I refuse to call it that game but Pathfinder did a great job of balancing some rules, making characters more unique, and i found it to be an overall awesome addition to the RPG world. Highly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars essential, Dec 23 2012
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This review is from: Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook (Hardcover)
a very nice book, much better than those 3.5 DnD books, it's huge but that's a good thing right ? XD
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent!, Feb. 16 2011
This review is from: Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook (Hardcover)
If you like or love 3.5 version of D&D, this only makes it better all round. I recommend it completely for any fan.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A much needed overhaul., April 9 2010
By 
I. G. Howe "Apolloin" (Calgary, Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook (Hardcover)
In summary, Pathfinder is the new revision of the old Dungeons & Dragons Third Edition system that essentially retcons the asinine Fourth Edition out of existence for those who can't stand where Wizards/Hasbro took the franchise in that version.

I usually view any 'reimagining' by ex-team members with a degree of dubiety, and so should you, but to understand why Pathfinder is such a good thing you really need to dig into the history of the D&D franchise. From it's humble beginnings in First Edition, D&D slowly evolved away from the 'you are in a ten foot by ten foot room, an orc guards a chest in the center of the room' school of roleplaying to become more complex and nuanced. In the eyes of many, however, second edition took a wrong turn at the corner of Matrix and Calculus, becoming baffling and needlessly arcane for the casual fan.

Third Edition removed several of the legacy systems, such as THACO, which had caused controversy and streamlined the system to work well with miniatures and mapboards and less higher math. Unfortunately some of the major pieces of Third Edition were unbalanced and broken, which caused a backlash similar to New Coke (albeit much smaller in scale). 3.5 made a gallant attempt to resolve these issues, but by this time the jury was largely out on the matter of Third Edition being broken and its market share suffered badly therefore - at the hands of more dynamic systems, such as the White Wolf series and also at the hands of the MMORPGs such as World of Warcraft which were becoming more popular.

At this point Wizards / Hasbro decided that the problem was TOO MUCH SYSTEM. Streamlining things even more, they also made the game virtually unplayable without miniatures. Borrowing concepts from computer based online games, they reduced the list of options available to the player in combat, but placed many of those powers on cooldowns so that once used they could be used later in a session. They also railroaded the DM's participation in the game by mandating the actions that monsters took - telling the GM which powers a monster would use in certain circumstances and even which player the monster would target.

Obviously there are many people who enjoy this sort of structure. It takes the weight off the DM, so as to speak. With preprepared adventures and detailed instructions on precisely how to run every encounter, the amount of prep a DM has to do for a session is reduced. There are, equally, many for whom this approach is anathema. Some people want to create characters who are individuals and who change considerably during their development - they want to avoid the kind of 'one true build' phenomenon that bedevils World of Warcraft. Many DM's prefer more lattitude in how they run their encounters and what their monsters actually do in a combat, rather than running them from an algorithm.

If you thought Third Edition was misguided but essentially well intentioned, then Pathfinder is perfect for you. Many reviews already extol the virtues of its design changes, the great need for detailed supporting material and a single campaign world, that is nonetheless full and varied. Pathfinder addresses the issues of low-level character survivability and evens out the power curve for wizards - the days of a single first level spell per day and then being reduced to poking things with a stick are over, but wizards no longer leave Fighters in the dust at high levels..

If you like 4th Ed but want to try something a bit more flexible you could also do worse than to go for Pathfinder!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dungeons and Dragons the way it meant to be!, Jan. 21 2010
This review is from: Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook (Hardcover)
Oooops! I shouldn't say D&D ... Let me explain this for those who dunno it yet. Pathfinder is in fact an update of the brilliant D&D 3.0/3.5 game. Most of the original people that worked on it back in 1997, left TSR/Hasbro when D&D 4th edition came up. They decided to improved this D20 system (so its compatible with the tons and tons of D20 stuff out there!) by simplifying it in certain area, clarifying some rules and adding new ones. Overall it's still D&D 3.5, but with all the tweaking from veterans designers (Monte Cook amongs other) into one streamlined product. Its a huge book! It joined together the Player's Handbook and the Dungeon Master Guide into one book. At around $33 CAD on Amazon its a deal!!!

Thank you Jason Bulmahn (Lead Designer)!
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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook by Jason Bulmahn (Hardcover - Sept. 1 2009)
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