As I mentioned earlier, it has been a number of years since I ran/played 2nd edition AD&D. Back in university we were poor students and stuck to the core books strictly due to the economics. Now that I have disposable income, when we decided that the Rise of the Runelords campaign would use 2nd edition, I went out and purchased all of the Complete [Insert Class] Handbooks for all of the classes in the Players' Handbook (so no ninjas, barbarians, monks, etc). I did this for three reasons:
1. I wanted to go for the whole big, messy 2E experience.
2. I wanted to give the PCs as many options as possible and to see if they were able to unbalance things so far as to break the system. And,
3. I like buying D&D books.
Out of the Complete Handbooks, the only things I have excluded have been for flavour reasons. I am trying to make the square peg of 2E fit onto the round hole of Paizo's Golarion setting which uses the Pathfinder system. This has led me to exclude things such as Amazon kits just because there are no Amazons in Golarion. However, I have also taken a very open view as to what to include - an example is the Alaghi pitfighter from the Complete Humanoids Handbook. I do not believe that Alaghi are a race included in Golarion but I didn't figure it would break anything.
How has it held up so far?
As I mentioned in my into post, I am really enjoying it. It is a very different experience than B/X D&D due to both the adventure path structure and the rules.
While I will post some more thoughts on the rules as we go, so far I am really enjoying the wonderful mishmash of rules. With the caveat that we are still at low level, I find the 2E ruleset to be quite tight and efficient. All of the options we have used so far have fit very seamlessly into the core systems.
The most common options we have used so far have been nonweapon proficiencies, kits and the combat options from the Complete Fighters Handbook.
Nonweapon Proficiencies and kits are an excellent way of adding depth to a character that does not interfere or dominate the standard class & race system. Your character is still mostly defined by their race and class but a whole new layer of detail can be added with these two simple subsystems. Nonweapon proficiencies do not exclude characters from trying anything but instead define what they are good or accomplished at. Kits are a great way to develop a characters backstory and roleplaying elements again without stepping on the toes of race and class or being overtly limiting mechanically.
I find the combat options also fit in very nicely with the base combat mechanics. In all of the cases I have seen so far in our campaign, if your character wants to try something a non-standard action it is handled very elegantly using either the standard attack roll or the base attribute check with maybe some modifiers. Very easy.
Hex Stocking Density
4 years ago