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Ed Greenwood Presents Elminster's Forgotten Realms: A Dungeons & Dragons Supplement Hardcover – October 16, 2012
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Top Customer Reviews
The book is well organized, the table of contents can lead you to what aspect of Realms life you want to focus on. Once there, the pages are packed full of details that will send your imagination into overdrive. For example, the section on wines could have been a boring restaurant wine list, instead not only does it tell you about wine it paints the picture of of what the adventures might see when they pass through a city gate. Or the section on tea which makes you question every traveling tea merchant you see.
Something else to note that was not listed in any description, it is a book full of new artwork with excellent descriptive text below it AND images of original hand drawn art/typed manuscripts that Ed had made countless years back. A real treasure trove.
This is a must have for any Forgotten Realms DM or hardcore player. A pass if you are looking for prestige classes and stat blocks.
None of it has been like this.
We've had books detailing areas of the Realms. We've had histories of nations, lists of rulers, and broad overviews of towns within those nations. We've had maps of castles and dungeons. We've learned the secrets of innkeepers. We've learned about the plants and critters found in a region, and the magic used in that area.
That's not this book.
We've had books detailing power groups of the Realms. We know about avatars. We've read about trading companies, churches, power-hungry mages, knightly orders, xenophobic elves, noble houses, and adventuring bands.
That's not this book.
We've had books detailing the magic of the Realms. We've learned about magical tomes, powerful spells, wondrous items, and the magic used by a noteworthy group of female siblings. We know about mage sigils, flying ships, gemstones that can be turned into ioun stones, and of a magical hangover cure.
That's not this book.
What we've never really had is a book about *living* in the Realms. We've never had a book that listed Realms-specific common words. We've never had a book that discusses how temples earn money. We've never had a book that discusses elven cuisine. We've never had a book that discussed the flow of trade and those who facilitate this flow. We've never had a book that discussed hygiene in the Realms.
In other words, we've never had a book that shows us the Realms from the perspective of the common 0-level NPC.Read more ›
This will be extremely useful if you are designing new campaigns in the area. One group that may run into trouble is DM's who have already imagined their own details -- now all that has been "superseded" by "canonical" info. Also, you may find snarky players pulling the book out to show you why you are DMing wrong. In either case, as DM you are free to decide that your (hopefully consistent) rules and details ARE canonical.
Highly recommended as the ultimate resource for Forgotten Realms data. Just don't be disappointed when you find out that your favorite region isn't how you imagined it.
A few other (non-D&D) compendiums may be of interest. Parlett's THE Book of Word Games contains an excellent "Alphabestiary" section of verbal play found in real life. Then there's Borge's The Book of Imaginary Beings and Calvino's Invisible Cities -- compendiums of imaginary creatures and of imaginary cities, respectively. All are highly recommended.
If all you are interested in is new "daily powers" or "epic destinies" or "prestige classes" or even silly/wasteful npc write-ups, then you will be dreadfully disappointed.
However, if you are a fan of RealmsLore, and you enjoy reading Ed's ramblings, then this book is a buy.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A nice companions: it would be fantastic if Wizards of the Coast would commission an updated version for the 5th edition.Published 26 days ago by Young Bones, M.D.
I bought this as a gift for my husband who has played D & D for 20 + years now. He loved being able to add another book to his collection of rules for D & D.Published 1 month ago by Juli Jermann
Maybe I'm not the target audience, but I bought this book to try to round out my ESO game experience (as I feel like it's a bit light on actual D&D). This didn't help at all. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Melissa B
This is a really great book, great illustrations and loaded with adventure ideas and things to get you into the life of the Faerhun (sp?). Read morePublished 9 months ago by Steven G. Ricketts
No new 5e content. This is just a rehash of FR material, with some added preliminary notes from over a decade ago. Very disappointing. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Michael T. Nagel
Ton of info in here, not all of it 100% useful for your average pen and paper RPG session. But the stuff that is useful will really help bring the Realms to life. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Sean R.
Very in depth look at customs and attitudes in the forgotten realms. Not a book for stat junkies but interesting and thorough.Published 14 months ago by Justin Case