• Welcome to this new upgrade of the site. We are now on a totally different software platform. Many things will be different, and bugs are expected. Certain areas (like downloads and reviews) will take longer to import. As always, please use the Meta Forum for site queries or bug reports. Note that we (the mods and admins) are also learning the new software.

PF2 Pathfinder 2 Core Layout

Recently picked up the Pathfinder 2e core book, and while I still reserve judgement on my impressions of the system as a whole, one thing that I can't abide is the labyrinthian nature of how the book is written. I'll give an example.

Say you want to know what Wild Shape does as you make your druid. You read the druidic order Wild, which says you gain the Wild Shape druid feat. You go to the druid feats and find Wild Shape which says you gain the wild shape order spell. So you flip 300 pages to the order spells (which are different from normal spells and in a different section) and find Wild shape. It states that you can polymorph into any form listed in the spell pest form. So you flip back a hundred pages to the pest form spell, listed under the normal spells, to find that it says you can turn into any tiny animal and they all have the same stats anyway.

For a player trying to get into roleplaying games for the first time, this is ridiculous. Instead of having any one of these things listed directly under the Wild Shape feat or under the Wild Shape spell, you have to flip hundreds of pages several more times to find the right thing. This is true for a lot of abilities in many of the classes, and I have no idea why these weren't simply listed with the abilities in question.
 

mewzard

Explorer
If I had to guess why the book did this so often, it was probably to save page space. The book is already 640 pages long. I imagine if they didn't do this, the book could have easily jumped more than a hundred pages of text that is basically copypasted from elsewhere in the book (like, say, every single Summon spell noting the same heighten rate).
 

Mycroft

Explorer
Yes, I find it byzantine, and maybe due to my eye condition, I find it very unpleasant on the eye; dislike the colour coding, the fonts are unattractive, detest the icons. I have a hard time telling the difference between the 2 and 3 action icon at a glance.
I mentioned all of this in the surveys.
 

CapnZapp

Adventurer
I will be purchasing the physical book to have as a rules reference during play, but I will do all my rules studying on my new 34" monitor with the PDF text enlarged
 

mach1.9pants

Adventurer
I really don't like the new layout style either, not a deal breaker, but I agree as mentioned in the review here, the character sheet looks like a tax form. And the overly bold colours everywhere are a literal eyesore. But I'm liking what I've read so far tho
 

niklinna

Explorer
I agree. To add insult to injury, none of the chapter or page references in the PDF are hyperlinks. So annoying.

What they could have done to ease the burden and save page duplication would be to have multiple references. For example, with wild shape, they could have listed all of those references you mentioned, instead of just the first one. It could have been inline or a little table, but either way it would have let you go directly to what you want to look up instead of having to hunt through a trail of five references!
 

niklinna

Explorer
I really don't like the new layout style either, not a deal breaker, but I agree as mentioned in the review here, the character sheet looks like a tax form. And the overly bold colours everywhere are a literal eyesore. But I'm liking what I've read so far tho
Oh that character sheet is a travesty. I look forward to fan-created versions.
 

DragonBelow

Explorer
I like the layout of the book, and even though I need reading glasses I have no trouble with the fonts, icons etc. The character sheet though makes me want to pull my eyes out :D. Who wastes color ink on a character sheet anyway? very minor gripe though.
 

Vael

Explorer
Again?! This is what annoyed me in Pathfinder 1! The Druid there was a mess of cross-referencing that literally annoyed me out of ever wanting to play a Druid. Druid is one of my favourite classes, and I get that wildshape is a complicated mechanic, but if you're going to make me flip through your dreadnought of a tome 3 or 4 times to figure out how you work, you can eff off.
 

niklinna

Explorer
This surprised me. Maybe the fans will add superb hyperlinking...
We can hope. Seriously, though, even if their authoring tools didn't provide a way to generate links automatically from cross-references (poor FrameMaker, languishing in Adobe's oubliette), it shouldn't be too hard to write a program to go through a PDF's text looking for "page #" and adding a link over that to the # in question. That wouldn't cover all the textual references, but in the end you should be able to hire a junior editor or three to add this stuff in.
 

Advertisement

Top