Daily Archives: 24 January 2011
My history with d20 has been an odd one. I started out decrying d20, grudgingly played in high school, and first got into “real” 3.5 games in college. My first of many college games was an Eberron 3.5 game I still miss, but some bad experiences (ones I attempted to critique back when I was using Blogger) drove d20 to the back-burner for quite a while. Sure, I ran a Tomb of Horrors one-off for Halloween that never finished, and some other one-nighters which met mixed reviews, and played in a couple of 3.5 games that died miserably in their teething stages. But it was the death of 3.5 D&D and the explosive birth of Pathfinder that, for whatever reason, got me to really into with the d20 system. Truth be told, I still prefer Exalted, and my gut reaction always leans towards sci-fi over fantasy, but when I get the itch for a hardcore tactical fantasy game, Pathfinder is there to scratch it.
It’s an awkward feeling when I know d20, the most popular gaming system on the planet for most of my gaming life, worse than I did obscure or out-of-print systems like Alternity, TORG, and Cyberpunk 2020. It was even more awkward when I did some work at a small e-publisher, and was put in charge of fact-checking the d20 mechanics since I had the most knowledge of the system. (Even worse when I, with my scant experience actually playing d20, had to explain to the line developers that there was no “throwing attack” skill.) I guess it would be more accurate to say that I didn’t use d20, considering how I delved in to explore and understand its mechanics.
Anyways, having run Pathfinder almost exclusively for a year, it’s good to take all that operational knowledge and mechanical understanding and get some first-hand, hands-on experience with the system… battlefield experience, if you will. Read the rest of this entry