What the Fuck is Trailblazer?

I heard about this while browsing the thread on RPGnet that is tearing apart all the Pathfinder previews, and frankly thought it was a joke. Trailblazer is apparently a "system optimizer" for Revised Edition that, like Pathfinder, tries to maintain backwards compatibility with Revised Edition while at the same time fixing a lot of the flaws in the mechanics. Also like Pathfinder, it seems to be stealing a lot of the 4th Edition mechanics.

It identifies many of the exact same problems that the designers said about Revised Edition, such as fighters sucking, diagonal movement, and making statblocks.

The 10-minute rest period is resolved by changing per day abilities to "per rest", which is essentially a convoluted method for 4th Edition's short rest excepts its 10 minutes long instead of five. Players immediately heal 50% of their hit points, refresh Rote spells, and ongoing effects end regardless of duration (kind of like half-assed 4E saving throws).
Everyone gets Reserve Points, which are good for healing more hit points or recharging Restricted spells and Rituals. So, mostly good for spellcasters, and I'll note that you can set aside Reserve Points into a party pool, somehow...

They succeed in making encounter building even more complicating by trying to apply an XP value to monsters based on CR, using a bunch of tables, and all-in-all trying their damnest to make it look like 4E's own XP budget method. Except they fail. I'm...not sure what the hell I'm looking at, or what means what...then I got to treasure parcels.

I find it very bizarre that so many people are trying so hard to "fix" 3rd Edition by basically taking the mechanics of 4th Edition and trying to shoehorn them in as much as they can, all the while trying to proclaim how great 3E is and that its totally compatible with 3rd Edition. Really, why not just play 4th Edition? Its mostly a half-assed houseruled version of 4E, anyway.


  1. "Why not just play eth Edition?"

    Because Bloody Path.

  2. i just had some of the players from my old group change to 4th ed and they love it! At first they skeptical about the whole issues but once i gave them some of the articles posted here they decided to give it a try...aaaand ended up buying all the core books!

  3. Our group tried 4E, but found it's too much like a video game or a CCG. 3E and TB allow PCs to be kicked around, without having high-fantasy teleporting fairies a necessary part of game-balance, and without a gaming style that's optional in 3E -- the kind where people are 100% and battle-ready soon after battle -- incorporates into the base rules so that it's no longer optional, but manditory.

  4. You can kick around the party in 4E quite well. I have no idea why you think that "teleporting faeries" (by which you mean eladrin, which arent much like faeries at all) to be mandatory to game balance: they are not.

    The game-style of D&D (across the editions) is action-adventure, and 4E does it best. That being said, you dont have to do that, and 4E also does other styles better than past editions, too.

    Characters are not "100% battle-ready" after completing an encounter. Sure, they can burn healing surges to restore hit points and regain encounter powers, but healing surges and daily powers dont refresh until an extended rest and they will eventually run out.

  5. No need to get defensive.

    Obviously, you like the feel of 4E. It's too high fantasy and fells more like a video game or CCG for our group.

    WRT D&D, we like TB, which isn't action-y enough for you, and its rules seem half-assed to you compared with 4E's.

    To each his own.


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