D&D 2E Let's Read the AD&D 2nd Edition PHB+DMG!

James Gasik

We don't talk about Pun-Pun
Given that the DMG has rules for creating entirely new classes, I think this comes down to the developers not wanting to ostracize people transitioning from 1e. Just like how they decided to use Thac0 instead of ascending AC (which we now know was something discussed), perhaps they thought letting "anyone" be a Paladin or Specialty Wizard would be received poorly. People were used to certain classes being special snowflakes, rare and beautiful butterflies that only the chosen few had an opportunity to play.*

*Certainly, I can tell you, no DM I ever played with allowed the UA character creation rules!

So the high requirements were kept, but there was ample advice to the DM saying "hey, just let them play what they want to."

I don't like this approach, mind you, but when I played 2e, I never questioned it. It's just the way the game was. When 3e came out and said "hey, nobody needs a plot coupon to play whatever race/class they want to", I was floored. What a concept!
 

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Micah Sweet

Level Up & OSR Enthusiast
Given that the DMG has rules for creating entirely new classes, I think this comes down to the developers not wanting to ostracize people transitioning from 1e. Just like how they decided to use Thac0 instead of ascending AC (which we now know was something discussed), perhaps they thought letting "anyone" be a Paladin or Specialty Wizard would be received poorly. People were used to certain classes being special snowflakes, rare and beautiful butterflies that only the chosen few had an opportunity to play.*

*Certainly, I can tell you, no DM I ever played with allowed the UA character creation rules!

So the high requirements were kept, but there was ample advice to the DM saying "hey, just let them play what they want to."

I don't like this approach, mind you, but when I played 2e, I never questioned it. It's just the way the game was. When 3e came out and said "hey, nobody needs a plot coupon to play whatever race/class they want to", I was floored. What a concept!
I never played 2e any differently than I played 1e, and the rules facilitated that. To me, all of that was a feature.
 

Voadam

Legend
People were used to certain classes being special snowflakes, rare and beautiful butterflies that only the chosen few had an opportunity to play.*

*Certainly, I can tell you, no DM I ever played with allowed the UA character creation rules!
Experiences differed :).

Everyone in my group immediately adopted UA's human rolls as an option as soon as it came out! I allowed choice of official methods and my long term 1e campaign still ended up with two grugach and two drow who chose DMG methods as they wanted the elven and subrace stuff.
 

James Gasik

We don't talk about Pun-Pun
Experiences differed :).

Everyone in my group immediately adopted UA's human rolls as an option as soon as it came out! I allowed choice of official methods and my long term 1e campaign still ended up with two grugach and two drow who chose DMG methods as they wanted the elven and subrace stuff.
Oh yes, I'm not saying there weren't some people who allowed people to more freely play what they wanted. I had a DM let me play a Dwarf Diviner once, because, in his mind, anyone should be able to become a Divination Wizard. Of course, Divination is a terrible specialization, so that character didn't last long, but at least I was allowed to!

But that was, for me, the exception, not the rule. : (
 


Voadam

Legend
(exceptional strength is only for fighters in 1st Ed., but this is expanded to the whole Warrior group in 2nd Ed., natch).
I remember paladins and rangers being able to get the fighter strength and con stat stuff because they were fighter subclasses.

2e's switch to warrior class group as a terminology term meant that you could unambiguously tell if something was straight fighter restricted or not, such as 2e's weapon specialization (until you got specific kit and specialty priest exceptions later) instead of parsing out whether fighter meant straight fighter only or fighter including fighter subclasses.
 

James Gasik

We don't talk about Pun-Pun
Weapon Specialization in 2e is a bad example. There's a kit in one of the Zakhara books that gives it out to THIEVES, which shows you how little the developers thought of it as a "Fighter" ability.

Heck, in Dark Sun, where you get jumped up versions of several classes, Specialization is more a Gladiator ability than a Fighter ability...but they do pay more xp for it, I guess.
 

Voadam

Legend
I remember paladins and rangers being able to get the fighter strength and con stat stuff because they were fighter subclasses.
Found a published 1e example from the pregens in Gygax's WG6 Isle of the Ape

1699468581325.png


Also the list of stats for predone paladins and rangers in the 1e Rogue's Gallery.

1699469058428.png
 
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Voadam

Legend
Weapon Specialization in 2e is a bad example. There's a kit in one of the Zakhara books that gives it out to THIEVES, which shows you how little the developers thought of it as a "Fighter" ability.

Heck, in Dark Sun, where you get jumped up versions of several classes, Specialization is more a Gladiator ability than a Fighter ability...but they do pay more xp for it, I guess.
Nah, specialization is a great example. :)

It tells you unambiguously right away whether the base rule allows a paladin to get weapon specialization like a single classed 2e fighter or if they need an exception rule like the errant kit from Complete Paladin's Handbook in order to get it. You don't have to figure out which use of fighter is meant.

Also in FOR9 Wizards and Rogues of the Realms it gives thieves from the city of Ordulin weapons specialization as well.

"The rogues who compose the Rot Grubs have been forced to learn a fair bit of the warriors craft to survive. Even from childhood they practice at arms. In game terms this knowledge is reflected in a unique way: The thieves of Ordulin are able to specialize in the use of weapons, just as fighters do."

I can't think of any 2e wizard spells that would grant a wizard weapon specialization though.
 
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James Gasik

We don't talk about Pun-Pun
Nah, specialization is a great example. :)

It tells you unambiguously right away whether the base rule allows a paladin to get weapon specialization like a single classed 2e fighter or if they need an exception rule like the errant kit from Complete Paladin's Handbook in order to get it. You don't have to figure out which use of fighter is meant.

Also in FOR9 Wizards and Rogues of the Realms it gives thieves from the city of Ordulin weapons specialization as well.

"The rogues who compose the Rot Grubs have been forced to learn a fair bit of the warriors craft to survive. Even from childhood they practice at arms. In game terms this knowledge is reflected in a unique way: The thieves of Ordulin are able to specialize in the use of weapons, just as fighters do."

I can't think of any 2e wizard spells that would grant a wizard weapon specialization though.
Tenser's Transformation, sorta.
 

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