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Monster Manual (D&D Core Rulebook) Hardcover – September 30, 2014


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Product Details

  • Series: D&D Core Rulebook
  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Wizards of the Coast; 5th edition (September 30, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786965614
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786965618
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 0.8 x 11.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (138 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #315 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Full backgrounds and tips for most a monsters are listed.
MrCrobos
The Monster Manual is one of the Dungeons & Dragons fifth edition core rule books.
Wizard
Artwork is brilliant, and the book quality seems very nice.
James E. Kidd

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

36 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Wizard on September 30, 2014
Format: Hardcover
The Monster Manual is one of the Dungeons & Dragons fifth edition core rule books. It brings in one of the essential elements of D&D, monsters. You can't help but flip through the pages of this book. The inspiring art and pleasant layout is wonderful. Before the main monster entries start, there are 8 pages devoted to a brief introduction, a description of monster statistics including challenge rating, finishing off with some legendary creature rules. Then the juicy part of the book starts, just over 300 pages of alphabetically organised monsters. Each monster entry is usually accompanied by some awesome art depicting that monster. One aspect that really stands out are the new legendary rules. These rules help legendary monsters, such as dragons, stand out and be more of a challenge, especially in their lair. They are a wonderful addition and will surely create some memorable adventures.

A 25 page miscellaneous creatures appendix contains just under 100 entries. Ape, awakened tree, blink dog, eagle, frog, giant rat, mule, phase spider, swarm of bats, winter wolf and worg are a few examples. The entries follow the same format as used in the appendix at the end of the Player's Handbook, except that for non-mundane animals they also have a short paragraph describing them. This is followed by a 9 page nonplayer character appendix. After a short section on customizing NPCs it contains entries such as acolyte, archmage, commoner, noble and thug. Each entry has a short paragraph describing how that NPC's role fits into the world. A very nice and handy addition.

This book is full of gorgeous content. When not using it to play the game I can see myself lazing on the couch and flipping through its pages. It continues the high standard that this new edition of D&D brings. Highly recommended.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Michael J. Tresca VINE VOICE on October 4, 2014
Format: Hardcover
The Monster Manual has been reviewed in-depth by several sources already, but I received my comp copy from Wizards of the Coast a little late (I'm sure it was just an oversight...) so I'm only just now getting to my own review of the world's most famous tome of monsters -- with the exception of The Monster Book of Monsters from the Harry Potter universe. Good news: The Monster Manual will not try to eat you. It may try to eat your players however.

* Keeping it simple: The first rule of The Monster Manual is that it's not going to try super hard to encompass every single variant of every single monster. Is a monster proficient with its weapons (page 9)? Yeah, sure. Are we going to list its armor and equipment? No we're not, and who would want stinky monster equipment anyway? This fits nicely with 5E's approach of keeping things simple.

* High fantasy with a touch of humor: The artwork ranges from high fantasy-style watercolors to little sketches and doodles. There is no joy quite like seeing an otyugh galumph along at high speed (page 8), its tentacles streaming behind it like a dog's ears. Also, all the women are clothed, including repeat offenders like the marilith, dryad, and succubus (an entire film has been dedicated to the teenage boy fantasies ignited by the sight of a naked succubus in the original Monster Manual).

* Legendary monsters: Many of the monsters are reimagined, and others have been given a place as legendary monsters that change the terrain and have special powers in their lair. Aboleths, beholders, demiliches, mummies, unicorns, vampires, and dragons among others. Also, the tarrasque.

* We call it Dungeons & Dragons for a reason: Dragons take up a large chunk of the book, as well they should.
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32 of 37 people found the following review helpful By Maximillian Bernhardt on September 30, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The Good:
- A lot of monsters, and all the classics
- More, better organized info about each monster, and like literally EVERY MONSTER. 4E's MM has way too little, and 3.x's MM had uneven amounts of information.
- Drop-And-Go NPC's. Several pages of humanoid NPC's in the back of various CR's, all grouped up conveniently.
- 24 PAGES of miscellaneous animals and creatures. These are the types of things that just claw-claw-bite, and don't have a pathos or special abilities.
- Way better layout than previous editions. They more or less kept it to a monster a page. It feels much more like the sort of whimsical bestiary you'd see in a fancy wizarding movie or cartoon.
- Down-N-Dirty explanation of anything a DM would need to know about monsters, making the book function entirely on its own. They repeat only what's necessary in the intro section
- Not a bunch of non-info pages/advertisements in the back. Open the back cover and there's the Index.
- Awesome Cover. Nice and thick, very high quality feeling.
- The art is incredible. I know this seems like an afterthought, but the art really is fantastic and expressive. 4E's art often looked overly animated or cartoonish, and 3E's art often looked like something out of a field guide book. Neither of these are inherently bad, but the 5E MM strikes a balance that hits a sweet spot.

The Bad:
- Owlbears look dumb now. This is important. 3E Owlbear or GTFO
- Mechanically, inside a vacuum, just from looking, I feel like I want some of the more challenging monsters to just do more. There seems to be some mechanical redundancy.
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