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Pool of Radiance II & The Third Edition

The game originally started out using the 2nd Edition rules for D&D. Once the 3rd Edition rules were announced, the developers contacted Wizards of the Coast and obtained a copy of the new rules. Changing the game around a bit to suit the new rules was a bit of a challenge but in the end nearly all of the new rules were incorporated into the PC game. The new rules make D&D more streamlined and exciting to play. Some of the significant updates to gaming with the new rules in Pool of Radiance are listed below:

Classes and Races:

A new race has been added: The Half-Orc. The new classes available are: Barbarian, Monk, and Sorcerer. Some classes gain special abilities as they advance. In addition there are no race or class level restrictions. All races advance to any level in any class up to a maximum of 16 levels in any single class. The maximum combined level of any multi-class character is 32.

Classes:

  • Fighter
  • Barbarian
  • Paladin
  • Ranger
  • Cleric
  • Sorcerer
  • Monk
  • Rogue

Races:

  • Half-Orc
  • Human
  • Halfling
  • Dwarf
  • Elf
  • Half-Elf

The specialty priests from the 3rd Edition will not be making an appearance here. It's felt that basic clerics are better suited to the general adventure. Sorcerers are handled exactly as they are in 3rd Edition. They get new spell slots as they go up in levels and can cast any spell they know as many times as they have slots in that spell magnitude. Every time a sorcerer gains a level where they would learn a new spell, an interface screen pops up giving the remaining spells of that magnitude that they can choose from.

Skills

Skills in the New rules replace proficiencies and some class abilities from the previous rules. Pool of Radiance automatically assigns skill points when your characters advance in level, depending on their class and and intelligence.

  • Concentration
  • Disable Device
  • Heal
  • Hide
  • Listen
  • Move Silently
  • Open Locks
  • Search
  • Spellcraft
  • Spot

Feats

Feats are a new feature for the latest D&D rules. Feats are special abilities that give your characters new talents or improve existing skills and character statistics they already have. Characters gain additional feats as they advance in levels.

  • Blind Fighting
  • Cleave
  • Combat Casting
  • Combat Reflexes
  • Great Fortitude
  • Improved Critical
  • Improved Initiative
  • Iron Will
  • Lightning Reflexes
  • Mobility
  • Point Blank Shot
  • Power Attack
  • Precise Shot
  • Run
  • Skill Focus
  • Spell Penetration
  • Toughness

Ability Scores

While the ability scores have not changed from the previous rules their bonuses have. In the previous rules, a character had to have a very extreme score, such as 16 or 5 to get either bonuses or penalties. Now ability scores give bonuses starting at 12 and penalties starting at 9.

Multi-Classing

The multi-classing system is significantly different than the previous system. Instead of starting experience between classes, characters choose what class they want to advance in when they gain a level. It’s a more flexible system that allows players to carefully control the skills of their characters.

Magic

There are several changes to the spells system in the new rules but the most significant is the introduction of the Sorcerer class. Sorcerers don’t need to memorize spells like Wizards do. They simply have a set number of spells of each level that they may cast before they must rest, and they may choose what spell to cast at any time, making them more flexible. In Pool of Radiance Sorcerers are available but Wizards are not. Additionally, Clerics aren’t required to pray for spells; they may choose what spells to cast at any time, like a Sorcerer. This departure from the new rules makes your Clerics very effective.

There will be over 100 spells including new ones such as Divine Power (cleric), Cat’s Grace (sorcerer), Searing Light (cleric), Repulsion (sorcerer), and Shield of Faith (cleric).

Combat Features:

Here's "a list of most notable mechanics from 3E D&D that have made it into the product."

  • Concealment modifiers
  • Cover bonuses
  • Defensive Fighting
  • Delay
  • Favored Enemies for rangers
  • Flanking
  • Full Attack option
  • Line of Sight
  • Rage for barbarians
  • Ranged Weapon modifiers for extreme distance
  • Refocus
  • Smite Evil for paladins
  • Sneak Attack for rogues
  • Turn Undead for clerics

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