I created this in order to answer a question risen in another topic, so to keep THAT thread on topic, let's discuss our p&p experiences here.
@Never mind lets just shoot wes asked which was better; 4th ed D&D, 5th ed D&D or Pathfinder.
I can't speak for 4th ed, as I haven't played it, but as far as I can collect, the popularity of Pathfinder came from the disappointment 4th ed was. Pathfinder is great! It's simpler and more accessible version of 3.5th ed, focusing on a higher power level characters. In time, the customization options has exploded, overwhelming new players (a 2nd ed Pathfinder has been announced, play test will begin in August) if they strayed just a little from the core rulebooks. But that means you could make basically anything you wanted (within limits, off course). But this could also lock your character in super-powerful, one-trick ponies. If you wanted to goof around and be a jack-of-all-trades, you would be at a significantly lower power level than you munchkining friends.
Pathfinder also drowns in different kinds of modifiers. You could have about 10 different, stackable typed modifiers to your attack roll, plus an undefined number of untyped modifiers. AC at 70 at level 15 was not unheard of and an attack bonus in the 40's is normal.
5th ed D&D, however gets rid of all this. Where Pathfinder is the Android to 3.5's iOS (or vice versa), 5th ed is your good old abacus. Gone are the excessive amount of magic items and with them the high amount of modifiers. You basically have one main modifier (based on your level) plus your ability modifiers. And where customization was a great part of Pathfinder, 5th ed is the opposite; but in no way are your options locked. The options are so few, that it is your imagination, that sets the limit. A fighter can fulfill basically any role and perform well with any weapon, just as a fighter should, instead of focusing on a single weapon, and so on.
A drawback to this is the low modifiers. You simply feel it's a 50-50 chance whether you make a check or not. In Pathfinder, you could be fairly certain that your investment in certain magic items and skill and feats would help you overcome obstacles, you were trained for. In 5th ed, everyone can pass or fail basically any check.
Pathfinder 2.0, however, seems to promise some sort of middle ground between those. I'm looking forward to see what Paizo has in mind.