Oh, I love getting surprises in the mail, particularly when they are as cool as the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Beginner Box. My friends at Paizo Publishing sent one over, and boy is it gorgeous.
For those who don't know Pathfinder, it's a Role Playing Game spawned out of the Open Game License (OGL) a few years back. Short history: a certain very popular RPG made their rules open license, many companies grew up providing supporting materials for those rules, Paizo in particular created a very, very complicated campaign setting - the world of Golarion and hundreds, or maybe thousands of adventure modules and supporting materials, and then a certain very popular RPG ditched support for their rules and made a (some would say much needed, long overdue) revamping of its rules. But this left a lot of companies without a core rule system. Paizo came out with the Pathfinder RPG, and voila! their bazillion ancillary products now had a fantastic spine. What's more, they subsequently captured a huge share of the RPG market (3.5 yay!) and have become an even more major player in the RPG industry.
I've got the Core Rulebook and Bestiary, and I bought a PDF of the Campaign Guide and several adventure modules. They are coming out with an Asian-themed campaign setting later this month, and I'll be picking that up as well. Confession: I haven't gamed in a long while, but I love reading rule books and campaign setting books, and I'm thinking that when my son gets just a little older, classic Pen & Paper style RPGs might be a nice imagination-fueling counterbalance to the comparably more passive experience of video-gaming. I'm also very interested in the way that RPGs have been an outlet for the swords & sorcery brand of fantasy in those decades in which the epic dominated literary fantasy, and the way in which RPG and literary fiction exchange energies now that epic fantasy is "grittying up."And I just love their setting. So the Beginner Box is a great way for this overworked, freetime-less editor to jump in quick and run his son through his first RPG.
- ThePathfinder Roleplaying Game Beginner Box includes:
- 64-page Hero’s Handbook, detailing character creation, spells, equipment, and general rules for playing the game
- 96-page Game Master’s Guide packed with adventures, monsters, magical treasures, and advice on how to narrate the game and control the challenges faced by the heroes
- A complete set of 7 high-impact polyhedral dice
- More than 80 full-color pawns depicting tons of heroes, monsters, and even a fearsome black dragon
- Four pregenerated character sheets to throw you right into the action
- Four blank character sheets to record the statistics and deeds of your custom-made hero
- A durable, reusable, double-sided Flip-Mat play surface that works with any kind of marker
Update: Getting free stuff always makes me buy stuff. I just ordered this: Pathfinder Campaign Setting World Guide: The Inner Sea (Revised Edition)