Why I never ran into a problem with 3.5

One of the complaints about D&D 3.x that I have seen a lot is that the rules are bloated because of the numerous “splat books” that were released over the product’s life.  The vast array of often conflicting character options that came into play apparently made NPC creation, especially that of spell casters at higher levels,  take a very long time.  This problem comes almost entirely from optional material not the “core” of the system. Optional material is by its nature not required to play the game, which is at its core a quite elegant system.

As I have said earlier, I learned D&D from the d20SRD and throughout most of my gaming career did not have access to the vast array of supplemental material. I find that the options presented in the PHB, DMG, and MM are more than enough to create nearly any character that you can imagine. I also prefer lower level play and have been running a campaign using the E6 variant rules. With only six levels to work with and the core books only it is easy to create NPCs even spell casters in a few minutes because the scale and scope is limited.

Pathfinder looks promising because while it is possible to utilize most prior 3.x material, it is a new system that serves as a baseline from which games can again be run with simplicity using only the core books. Of course soon there will be new books released, but they are by no means required to play the game and if you find that rules bloat is problematic I urge you to try playing with a core set only and enjoying the game as it was on the day of its release.

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~ by katallos on October 2, 2009.

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