Pathfinder Roleplaying Game for Savage Worlds Adventure Edition: Advanced Player’s Guide, A Review

When Pinnacle Entertainment and Paizo announced Pathfinder for Savage Worlds (PF/SW), it was that rare perfect crossover, akin to Marvel and DC Comics’ co-publication of the Amalgam Comics promotional stunt. Golarion by way of Savage Worlds Adventure Edition gives a fantastic setting to a great RPG engine. Not to say the Pathfinder editions aren’t great engines or that Savage Worlds does not offer top notch fantasy settings, but like the Amalgam Comics, the combination of the two proved too good to resist. The original PF/SW Kickstarter reached an audience of over 2,800 backers, an impressive number of fans showed up interested in the kickoff of the rules conversion and adaptation of Paizo’s first adventure path (AP).

PF for SW Advanced Player's Guide Cover.png

With their second Kickstarter, Pathfinder® for Savage Worlds – Curse of the Crimson Throne, Pinnacle offers their version of the much loved Curse of the Crimson Throne AP and a new sourcebook, Pathfinder Roleplaying Game for Savage Worlds Adventure Edition: Advanced Player’s Guide. Chris Landauer, Director of Marketing at Pinnacle Entertainment Group, was kind enough to send a pre-alpha preview of the upcoming Advanced Player’s Guide for a quick review. Without further ado, let’s talk about one of the most important books coming to Pathfinder for Savage Worlds.

The Advanced Player’s Guide expands on PF/SW’s setup, bringing new content for players and the GM. This is not a one-to-one system upgrade of the original Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Advanced Player's Guide (OGL) for PF1e. That is the most important expectation to set for anyone that knows the PF1e version, this is not strictly the same book just sporting SW rules. It’s close, it treads the same ground in several places, but it embraces new material as well. This project uses the original as a blueprint, but adds some new content during its constructions.

From jump, there is a real feel that the Advanced Player’s Guide embraces the if-it-ain’t-broke philosophy as its North Star. The great Wayne Reynolds’ cover is right where it should be. The artwork is curated from Paizo’s original PF1e Advanced Player’s Guide and appears to add a few extras from the Pathfinder vaults. The layout showcases that artwork, but utilizes a presentation that feels more Pathfinder for Savage Worlds, which helps to differentiate it from PF or SW.

PF for SW Advanced Player's Guide Alchemist.png

To me, the meat of any Pathfinder or Savage Worlds sourcebook is the new ancestries and classes, and this one introduces some of the key PF options to SW. Offering additional details about the core ancestries, the book converts some fan favorites like Aasimar, Catfolk, Dhampirs, and Tieflings. Great additions to PF/SW, but wins for SW in general. To me, the selling point of this Advanced Player’s Guide is the new classes including the Alchemist, Cavalier, Inquisitor, Oracle, Summoner, and Witch. All pulled from the PF1e version, but given an SW vibe.

But that’s the PF converted content, and it’s Savage Worlds, so you know there are Edges, Hindrances, and Skills. Edges have the, uh, edge in this book. Class Edges, Combat Edges, Leadership Edges, Power Edges, Prestige Edges, Social Edges, Weird Edges, and Legendary Edges, if you want more fantasy Edges, this book delivers. As a standard part of many SW books, I love the summary charts for all of the Edges, they make for easy, quick scans.

There are Powers, wonderful, fun, new Powers. Create Pit, Magic Jar, Smite, and so many favorites. In addition, there are updated versions of Entangle and Summon Ally. Like all of the crunch in an SW game, these options will ramp up actions and player options. The preview has gear, magic items, and some rocking artifacts including the Cloud Castle of the Storm King, which is inspiring and worthy of many adventures.

In terms of rules, this book includes errata updates superseding the Pathfinder for Savage Worlds core book. While there are not a great deal of updates, the errata for the original rulebook is clearly defined. For example, the entire text for armor restrictions and interference as well as villainous conviction is updated in total. No need to read about 90% of it in one book and a single sentence here, instead, you get the full direction in one place.

With this and the core rulebook, the game has enough crunch to play like Pathfinder and Savage Worlds combined, the best of both worlds.

PF for SW Advanced Player's Guide Ancestries.png

While this was only a quick review of the book’s pieces, let’s get to the loaded questions. Is this product compelling enough to switch from Pathfinder proper to PF/SW? Is this the book that will make your gaming table jump from your current fantasy SW campaign to PF/SW? While the answers will vary from table to table, I’ll give my perspective on this book and the RPG line as a whole.

First and foremost, this is a top flight book, one that shows the craft and attention of the crew from Pinnacle and Paizo. You can order Pathfinder Roleplaying Game for Savage Worlds Adventure Edition: Advanced Player’s Guide with the full faith and assurance that you’re getting a 5 star product. Provided that you’re a SW fantasy or PF/SW fan, this book is a lock. Get it, go forth, and game without regrets.

Let’s talk about this book as an option for non-PF/SW fans. If you’re already a PF fan, either edition, is this going to call out to you? It might. Just as PF1e was loved and respected, yet many of its fans moved to PF2e, PF/SW will attract that same crowd of early adopters and Pathfinder lore fans. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with Pathfinder. Nevertheless, new options can be inviting. What I like about PF/SW is simple: You’re getting an established, easy to game system in Savage Worlds backed up by the established gaming concepts, setting, and history of Pathfinder. The upside to this is a streamlined, well balanced engine, one with a dedicated following. Combine that with all of the trappings of Pathfinder’s lore and world, but none of its power creep, and you’re looking at a standout product line.

PF for SW Advanced Player's Guide New Edges.png

Still, where does Pathfinder Roleplaying Game for Savage Worlds Adventure Edition: Advanced Player’s Guide fit into this? It’s that extra bit of fun that opens up the non-core classes and ancestries. In games of SW and PF, more options equals more fun. This book provides just that. With the core rulebook, this sourcebook, and some monsters, your table is going to experience fun, memorable fantasy adventures.

Savage Worlds fans, should you turn up for this project? If you’re looking for fantasy, either as adventurers in Golarion or just as a sourcebook for your Savage Worlds fantasy campaign, each of these books are richly detailed, well considered tomes from the stars of Savage Worlds design. There’s a lot to pull from and convert for your SW fantasy campaigns. It’s an easy recommendation.

As stated, individual mileage will vary, and this is certainly not a call to abandon one system for the other. Pathfinder, Savage Worlds, and your system/setting of choice are all good, valid games. That said, this is no slouch either. A great deal of creative thought went into this line, and the Advanced Player’s Guide is a great example of that work and attention. Combined with the Curse of the Crimson Throne AP through this Kickstarter, your gaming table is in for a great campaign.

If you’re a Pathfinder fan, are you joining in on PF/SW? For Savage World fans, have you taken the plunge? Let us know your thoughts on Pathfinder for Savage Worlds in the comments.

Pathfinder® for Savage Worlds – Curse of the Crimson Throne from Pinnacle Entertainment Group and Paizo Inc.
  • End Date: Thu, July 14 2022 8:00 PM EDT.
  • “Recruit six all-new Classes from the Advanced Player's Guide to rescue Korvosa from the dangers threatening to tear it apart!”
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Egg Embry

Egg Embry




thullgrim

Adventurer
Has anyone tried PFSW in play yet? I've bought the stuff and skimmed through it - but I haven't had a group interested in playing it just yet.
Yes. I converted the first book of Iron Gods and ran via VTT and it went great. I’m running RotRL for an in person game. We just started last week and it went well.

If you like Savage Worlds and you Like High Fantasy you’ll love Savage Pathfinder.

For me I value niche protection in my games. Class edges work for that. It’s a more than credible replacement for PF 1.

What I like most about it is speed of resolution at the table. Plus SWPF includes the SWADE baked in tools like dramatic tasks, quick encounters, chases and so on so there are tools to assist with social encounters or to use in speed through some of the grind chaffe encounters you might find in an AP.
 

thullgrim

Adventurer
I’ll follow up with a few more notes. SWPF characters are stronger than core SWADE characters. The races are all built more powerful and the characters all start with one extra edge- the class edge.

SWPF is self contained. It does not require SWADE.

If you are a Savage Worlds player the SWPF Bestiary is worth getting even if you don’t get anything else.

I backed the first KS and I’m a backer on this one as well. CoCT is going be fun in Savage Worlds. If/when they get to Iron Gods or Mummy’s Mask I think your really going to see SWPF sing. Savage Worlds already handles multiple genres and pulp action well and those two APs would highlight that.

The Dramatic Tasks system can be used to replace many of the PF1 sub systems developed for specific APs. Library research in Mummy’s Mask for instance.
 

Zehnseiter

Explorer
Nice to see that there is a follow up to the first kickstarter.

Pathfinder and Savage Worlds is as combination interesting enough that it even gets translated in other languages.
For example Ulisses Spiele the German company that does the German translation for both game lines said why not and has currently a crowdfunding on gameontabletop for the German language version.

 

Dr. Bull

Explorer
Has anyone tried PFSW in play yet? I've bought the stuff and skimmed through it - but I haven't had a group interested in playing it just yet.
Retreater:

I've GM'd the first adventure so far (Burnt Offerings) of Rise of the Runelords with a group of veteran Pathfinder/D&D/Savage Worlds players. They all seemed to agree that the Savage Worlds edition helped make game play very smooth, keeping with the "Fast, Furious, Fun" motif that the game system is known for...

We didn't get bogged-down in consulting the rules and the momentum of the first battle (the goblin attack on Sandpoint) went incredibly fast. It left a lot more game time for character interaction, exploration, and plot development.

Essentially, Pathfinder for Savage Worlds is the same as Savage Worlds Adventure Edition with another set of "background edges" that represent the traditional character classes. They are slightly more powerful than traditional (novice) SWADE characters and the spell lists have been slightly modified to make it feel more like Pathfinder. In my opinion, the blending of the two systems was a complete success.

Overall, I would give it an "A".

- Dr. Bull
 

Vinicius_Zoio

Explorer
Gonna agree with Dr. Bull here. Pathfinder for Savage Worlds has been a "heaven's gift" for me and my table!

Savage Worlds has been my gaming system of choice for quite a while now, and we're all Dungeons & Dragons fans. One of the SW's strengths is that the system invites and enables customization, and I have certainly done so over my years of playing it - I have dozens of Setting Rules for a variety of settings and gameplay styles.

With Pathfinder for Savage Worlds, I simply no longer need to craft and brew my own rules adapting D&D settings to SW - that has now been done for me. I've been using PFSW to GM everything from Pathfinder to Greyhawk, Forgotten Realms, Dark Sun and the like. It has also brought me to Golarion as a setting - which has been an interesting world to explore.

All in all, an excellent addition to the Savage Worlds repertoire! ^^
 


FoolishFrost

Adventurer
just to be clear, it’s generally d&d lite. Take just about any setting from d&d, and this will work as rules for it to keep the d&d feel, without the clutter.

healing, potions, magic items, spells, and the like are all in place, and close enough to the classics to be usable. Morse than 4th edition was. Not knocking 4th, but it just wasn’t like any of the rule sets before.
 




UlissesSpiele

Villager
Ulisses Spieler reminded me that they're converting Pathfinder for Savage Worlds into German right now: Savage Pathfinder (Ulisses Spiele)
@Egg Embry and @Zehnseiter Thank you for the mention and Link. We're the company bringing both Pathfinder and Savage Worlds in German and really excited to bring "the best of both worlds" with SavagePathfinder now in the Crowdfunding on GameOnTabletop as well.

(Edited to add: For those of you for whom "crowdfunding" only equals "Kickstarter" check us out there: With "Fading Suns:Lost Worlds" we're bringing more swords & spaceships in a revamped sciencefantasy setting to Kickstarter right now)
 

@Egg Embry and @Zehnseiter Thank you for the mention and Link. We're the company bringing both Pathfinder and Savage Worlds in German and really excited to bring "the best of both worlds" with SavagePathfinder now in the Crowdfunding on GameOnTabletop as well.

(Edited to add: For those of you for whom "crowdfunding" only equals "Kickstarter" check us out there: With "Fading Suns:Lost Worlds" we're bringing more swords & spaceships in a revamped sciencefantasy setting to Kickstarter right now)
Covered your Fading Suns right here! It looks awesome! ;-)
 

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