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Pathfinder 2E Conversion Guide

Paizo has released a conversion guide from Pathfinder 1st Edition to the brand new 2nd Edition.

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"We know many of you are eager to convert your current games over to the new rules, so we’ve created the Pathfinder Second Edition Conversion Guide to help guide your way. Here, you’ll find tips, tricks and a mountain of advice on how to convert your game as easily as possible. It includes conversion notes for characters, spells, magic items, and monsters!"
 
Russ Morrissey

Comments

CapnZapp

Adventurer
Before reading, let me note that any detailed or formulaic conversion procedure is a fool's errand, and that the best character conversion guideline is, and will always be:

1) write down a description of your character on a piece of paper using plain English only (no game terms)
2) now burn your old character sheet (or put it away so you can't look at it)
3) create a brand new character using the new options, using your piece of paper from step 1 as a loose guide

This guideline always works for all games in all situations. It is also far superior to detailed conversions (with numbers and formulas) that mostly just to serve the illusion there's a scientific way to go about the conversion. Which there never is, even between fairly close systems (which PF1 and PF2 is not).

Now I shall click the link and read what Paizo has written... :)
 

CapnZapp

Adventurer
Pathfinder Second Edition Conversion Guide said:
The differences between the first and second editions of Pathfinder are significant enough that you can’t convert from one to the other by changing a few numbers and updating a few terms, so a straightforward conversion formula is impossible. Instead, the goal of this guide is helping you understand how best to recreate the elements you need to continue your story.
Nuff said (y)

(But really, the best advice I would give myself would be "Don't switch mid-campaign. Finish your current story by keeping PF1. Then start a brand new story featuring brand new characters to explore PF2".

In other words "the best conversion is not to convert at all...")
 

RSIxidor

Explorer
Certainly not comprehensive but solid advice for converting. Have to agree with the sentiments above, though.
 

jsaving

Explorer
Stunningly useless, really. Amazing that it doesn't even mention the abolition of multiclassing, which you'd think might be important for the large majority of characters who splash something other than their base class?
 

Larrin

Entropic Good
I've never gotten any use from character conversion guides, but I wouldn't be surprised if Paizo knows fully that their conversion guide really isn't particularly insightful or necessary for many people. They also know that a non-trivial number of people are going to ask for one, or ask for help in their specific individual character. I've seen it with other new editions. So rather than making a brief statement of how you can convert your character by just making a character the way you normally make a character, a brief statement that could easily come off as condescending or snarky, they made a longer document that politely walks a person through a process that many will find trivial, but some people will feel better for having their hand held. From Paizo's perspective people are going to ask "how do I remake X", so it's in their interest to have a link they can throw out that walks people through the rather basic process even if a majority read it and can't see the use.
 

Dragonhelm

Knight of Solamnia
Keep in mind that players have differing levels of experience and some may need a little confidence booster ("hand-holding") so they realize they're doing okay.

I've seen a mixed bag in terms of conversion guides over the years. I found the AD&D 2e to D&D 3e guide to be a mixed resource. I liked the WEG d6 Star Wars to d20 Star Wars guide to be a good resource, though I would use it as a guideline only these days.
 

GreyLord

Adventurer
Before reading, let me note that any detailed or formulaic conversion procedure is a fool's errand, and that the best character conversion guideline is, and will always be:

1) write down a description of your character on a piece of paper using plain English only (no game terms)
2) now burn your old character sheet (or put it away so you can't look at it)
3) create a brand new character using the new options, using your piece of paper from step 1 as a loose guide

This guideline always works for all games in all situations. It is also far superior to detailed conversions (with numbers and formulas) that mostly just to serve the illusion there's a scientific way to go about the conversion. Which there never is, even between fairly close systems (which PF1 and PF2 is not).

Now I shall click the link and read what Paizo has written... :)
Depends on whether it actually is a new game or a new edition.

New editions typically are just the old edition but made newer with some added items. Normally very compatible with the older items.

New games are different and uncompatible. After 2000 many game systems trend towards releasing new games and calling them new editions rather than actually just updating and creating a new edition.

Older games many times WERE HIGHLY compatible. You could take a character from B/X and basically run it as it was in BECMI. You could take a character from BECMI and convert it almost on the fly to AD&D. You could take and AD&D 1e character and play it in an AD&D 2e game. You could even do it in the reverse order of what is stated above.

You could take many OD&D characters and run them straight as they were in an AD&D game.

You could take a Star Wars WEG 1e character and convert it very easily to a Star Wars WEG 2e character.

This entire inability to convert your character to a new edition is a post D20/3e thing rather than what used to be able to be done previously. There are some game systems that still are made to allow conversion, though these days they are fewer and farther between.
 

CapnZapp

Adventurer
Depends on whether it actually is a new game or a new edition.

New editions typically are just the old edition but made newer with some added items. Normally very compatible with the older items.

New games are different and uncompatible. After 2000 many game systems trend towards releasing new games and calling them new editions rather than actually just updating and creating a new edition.

Older games many times WERE HIGHLY compatible. You could take a character from B/X and basically run it as it was in BECMI. You could take a character from BECMI and convert it almost on the fly to AD&D. You could take and AD&D 1e character and play it in an AD&D 2e game. You could even do it in the reverse order of what is stated above.

You could take many OD&D characters and run them straight as they were in an AD&D game.

You could take a Star Wars WEG 1e character and convert it very easily to a Star Wars WEG 2e character.

This entire inability to convert your character to a new edition is a post D20/3e thing rather than what used to be able to be done previously. There are some game systems that still are made to allow conversion, though these days they are fewer and farther between.
No, the old practice of just reissuing the same edition just spruced up with a new cover image and maybe a few rearranged chapters was a bad thing, and nobody likes it.

So, yes, I'm sure detailed converting guides could be made to support, say, moving from Call of Cthulhu 4.2 to Call of Cthulhu 4.3.

But that is simply not relevant in today's world. Today, if you want an old game, you simply download the PDF.

And it definitely did not start with D&D Third Edition (meaning that the implication it deliberately broke compatibility to AD&D to start some nebulous industry trend is false - it just did what any sensible game designer does nowadays, change things around sufficiently to warrant a new purchase, if not honest-to-gawd actual improvement)

Moving from any edition of Warhammer FRP, for instance, (there are four), definitely merits scrapping the hope of a detailed conversion guide and instead basking in the wisdom that is the approach I set out!
 

GreyLord

Adventurer
No, the old practice of just reissuing the same edition just spruced up with a new cover image and maybe a few rearranged chapters was a bad thing, and nobody likes it.

So, yes, I'm sure detailed converting guides could be made to support, say, moving from Call of Cthulhu 4.2 to Call of Cthulhu 4.3.

But that is simply not relevant in today's world. Today, if you want an old game, you simply download the PDF.

And it definitely did not start with D&D Third Edition (meaning that the implication it deliberately broke compatibility to AD&D to start some nebulous industry trend is false - it just did what any sensible game designer does nowadays, change things around sufficiently to warrant a new purchase, if not honest-to-gawd actual improvement)

Moving from any edition of Warhammer FRP, for instance, (there are four), definitely merits scrapping the hope of a detailed conversion guide and instead basking in the wisdom that is the approach I set out!
The aforementioned Warhammer FRP you bring up actually did NOT have a 2nd edition until AFTER the release of 3e. 2e was highly convertible to 1e and in most aspects, was perhaps easier to convert than BECMI to AD&D.

Warhammer 3e by FFG was where it went off the rails into a totally different game than what had been before.

It is STILL relevant today, even if many companies choose to go a different direction than that.

Pathfinder itself was made popular due to ease of converting between D&D 3.5 and PF1e.
 
Accepting that Pathfinder 1E and Pathfinder 2E are two very different games, even if they have surface level similarities, is the first step. I'm with CapnZapp on this: the best approach to conversion is to finish out a PF1E campaign and start fresh with a PF2E campaign.

I'm quite enjoying PF 2E actually, really like it's design, but I see no reason to ditch PF1E....it's functionally a different game and experience, and the two are best treated as different beasts.
 

Ancalagon

Dusty Dragon
Before reading, let me note that any detailed or formulaic conversion procedure is a fool's errand, and that the best character conversion guideline is, and will always be:

1) write down a description of your character on a piece of paper using plain English only (no game terms)
2) now burn your old character sheet (or put it away so you can't look at it)
3) create a brand new character using the new options, using your piece of paper from step 1 as a loose guide

This guideline always works for all games in all situations. It is also far superior to detailed conversions (with numbers and formulas) that mostly just to serve the illusion there's a scientific way to go about the conversion. Which there never is, even between fairly close systems (which PF1 and PF2 is not).

Now I shall click the link and read what Paizo has written... :)
I completely agree. And the best part is "if we are going to do this, why stop at PF2? Why not 5e, or Troika! ?"

Once you accept that the essence of a character is not the mechanics, you can do so much more.

Lastly, they want a PF account to get the file, so I suppose I won't be reading it.
 

Melfast

Explorer
I completely agree. And the best part is "if we are going to do this, why stop at PF2? Why not 5e, or Troika! ?"

Once you accept that the essence of a character is not the mechanics, you can do so much more.

Lastly, they want a PF account to get the file, so I suppose I won't be reading it.
Hey Ancalagon,

Actually, I think you can download it without an account. It may have changed since you looked:

DOWNLOAD: Don't have a Paizo.com account yet? No problem! Just click here to access the Second Edition Conversion Guide.

When I did it, it did not make me sign in to my account, so hopefully this works for you too.

Melfast
 

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