07 March 2018
Playtest rulebook available for free this August ahead of full release next year
10 years after it shook up the roleplaying landscape, Pathfinder is getting a brand new edition.
Created in 2008 as an offshoot to Dungeons & Dragons’ third edition, Pathfinder has since grown into its own roleplaying behemoth, becoming the first RPG to outsell D&D in more than three decades and spawning a sci-fi sequel, last year’s Starfinder, that went on to become publisher Paizo’s fastest-selling game of all time.
Now, Pathfinder is getting a long-awaited second edition that makes several major changes to the roleplaying system. Among the biggest is a rethinking of the way characters perform actions, doing away with the separate move, standard, swift and immediate types of actions in favour of a streamlined combination of three actions and one reaction each round.
Another notable update is the combination of bonuses and stats – those used for saving throws, attack bonuses and the like – together as a single proficiency ranking based on each character’s attributes and level, meaning there’s no need to equip loads of magical items simply to boost your bonuses.
Paizo’s detailed FAQ about the second edition also promises a better balance between spellcasters and characters built around more direct combat, with spells decreasing in power over time to present the chance for other classes to use their abilities to greater effect.
The wider universe and story remains untouched, with the ability to play first-edition scenarios even after the studio stops creating first-edition supplements in July 2019.
Ahead of Pathfinder: Second Edition’s release next year, Paizo is releasing a playtest version of the game this August 2nd. The rules will be offered as a free PDF download, but can also be picked up in a limited edition 400-page book that takes characters from level one to 20, bundled with the seven-scenario playtest adventure Doomsday Dawn and a set of flip-mats.