Pathfinder 2e: Reflections

Secrets of Magic arrived and reminded me that I really rather enjoyed playing Pathfinder Second Edition.

Aside from having a (weirdly) different trade dress to the rest of the Rulebook range for Pathfinder 2e, the new book looks cool and exciting. Which reminds me… I enjoyed playing this earlier in the year.

I started out fiddling around with the Pathfinder Beginner Box and persuaded some of the chaps to hop online to Discord / Roll20 and play over a couple of sessions. I think it went three sessions in the end, last played around the end of February. We had a blast!

The Beginner Box set is a bargain!

Rolling on the heels of last night’s thinking about the School Club, it occurs to me that Pathfinder 2e is just the sort of high-fantasy, power-pumping, hot-blooded, modern roleplaying game for teenaged newbies to enjoy. Plus it lets me get my inner Tactician out and “step on up” to some seriously challenging play.

But what do I like about Pathfinder 2e? First time I read the Core Rulebook, I hated it: I was flummoxed by the vast tome and overwhelmed by the variety of content… and surprised that 400+ pages still didn’t have a Bestiary (there’s another book or three for that). It was the Beginner Box that changed it all for me, opening the door enough to let me see the light shining from within.

Pathfinder 2e is everything I enjoyed about Dungeons & Dragons circa 2000-2005 but without being Third Edition, carrying all the baggage people have piled on that old game and avoiding all the accusations of being “too complicated” (well, mostly). I like a whole bunch of small things in Pathfinder, like “Raise Shield” as an action and the fact that every Cleric has slightly different spell options.

I enjoy Golarion as a high-fantasy setting. It somehow manages to include everything that D&D’s Forgotten Realms offers without feeling like a hodge-podge of eclectic mess (nah, I am not a fan of FR). There is a demon-blasted wasteland that tempts me, not to mention one of the most sensitive and engaging sets of adventure regions based on various Earth-inspired cultures. I love the deities and lore of Golarion and feel drawn in whenever I read the books.

As I sit here tonight, I can’t help but feel drawn in. That’s a good feeling, I always maintain, when you get a new book. Secrets of Magic made me want to go and grab out the other books, gather the group back together, and run another adventure. I can’t honestly say that happens with every game book I buy.

Game on!


  1. I’ve been thinking about this subject and your school club commitments a lot since you posted it. I have a, very optional, suggestion.
    1. Tell the kids that you are going to run Pathfinder for a set number of sessions to introduce the game and play a bit. (Maybe 6 since that seems to be a comfortable number for you before you get bored and want to move on to something else. After that amount of time/# of sessions has transpired, you will make the game materials available for them to use if they wish to continue adventuring in that world/game system.

    You did mention that these are young, but well on their way to being, adults. This is how I would do it with an intro game that I wasn’t sure I wanted to play indefinitely.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s an eminently sensible suggestion – thank you! I think 6 sessions – half a term – is a fair old commitment, but the idea of taking the mindset of trying stuff out is a good one. I’ll add it to my mental melting pot. Thank you.


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