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Monster Vault: Threats to the Nentir Vale: A 4th edition Dungeons & Dragons Supplement (4th Edition D&D) Game


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Monster Vault: Threats to the Nentir Vale: A 4th edition Dungeons & Dragons Supplement (4th Edition D&D) + Monster Vault: An Essential Dungeons & Dragons Kit (4th Edition D&D) + Dungeon Tiles Master Set - The Dungeon: An Essential Dungeons & Dragons Accessory (4th Edition D&D)
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Product Details

  • Series: 4th Edition D&D
  • Game: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Wizards of the Coast; Pck Brdgm edition (June 28, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786958383
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786958382
  • Product Dimensions: 11 x 8.9 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #227,814 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

WARNING:
CHOKING HAZARD -- Small parts. Not for children under 3 yrs.

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

BRIAN R. JAMES and MATT JAMES are freelance game designers and brothers who have written articles for D&D Insider™ and other popular RPG industry websites and organizations. Brian also wrote The Grand History of the Realms™ supplement for the Forgotten Realms® campaign setting and co-wrote the Underdark™ and Demonomicon™ game supplements.

STERLING HERSHEY has written numerous articles and co-written several game supplements for the Star Wars® Roleplaying Game Saga Edition™. This is his first deep dive into the Dungeons & Dragons Roleplaying Game.

STEVE TOWNSHEND is a freelance writer whose previous work includes the Demonomicon™ game supplement.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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On the one hand, in this book, you have some of the very best monster design in 4e.
William M. Wilson
This provides more lore and setting info on the Nentir Vale than pretty much every other source book combined.
Jack
This contains plenty of gorgeous tokens, and a very detailed, double sided battlemat.
Ian Ramsey

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

42 of 42 people found the following review helpful By William M. Wilson on June 28, 2011
Format: Game Verified Purchase
Rating this one is tough.

On the one hand, in this book, you have some of the very best monster design in 4e. WotC has only been getting better at monsters since Monster Manual 3 last year, and I haven't found much to complain about in this one yet... Except for one thing, which I'll get to.

Much like in the Shadowfell box set, we have a 128-page softcover book, a poster map, and six cardstock sheets of tokens. Unlike in the Shadowfell box, WotC doesn't even try to make the container box-like; it's a slipcover, shrink-wrapped, holding all the goodies. All told, this still makes the product rather pricey for the page-count... As I've said, this is quality material, so I'm not grouching too much, but it's a tough sell at full price. (Sadly, the tokens continue to have the monster names across the Bloodied sides, which make them easier to find, but make it much tougher to use them as generic placeholders, and make it nearly impossible to hide monsters' identities from your players. I'd rather guess!)

Also like in the Shadowfell box set, a large portion of the "monsters" herein are basically NPC groups, generally opponents. For me, this is awesome; it's very easy to take a group like, say, the Blackfang Gnolls or the Tigerclaw Barbarians, and quickly construct a level-appropriate encounter for my players. It helps make prep-time low, and play-time valuable. I'm also partial to NPC groups in general; a faction such as the Iron Circle or the Grey Company has a lot more interest as a long-term foe than a simple Troll does. This also makes it very easy for me to integrate these foes into my home Dark Sun game.

Although I've not had time to exhaustively read the flavor text, there's a ton of it, and it's overall well-written.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By W. Johnson on July 14, 2011
Format: Game Verified Purchase
I have mixed feelings about MV: Threats to the Nentir Vale. If this was the only monster manual I would give this book 5 stars. As it is the latest monster manual (despite being called a roleplaying supplement) I'm going to give it a bit above 4 stars. Let me explain.

I've been playing 4E since Keep on the Shadowfell was released. One thing the designers realized as time passed was that monsters were underpowered against PCs after the lower levels. Starting with Monster Manual 3 monster power was adjusted particularly at high heroic, paragon and epic levels.

The good is the designers now know how to make good 4E monsters. The monsters in the book are good and if you are using Nentir Vale there is also good story ties to various parts of the Vale. The bulk of the monsters are heroic level with some paragon level ones. There are no epic monsters which makes sense because Nentir Vale is not an epic setting.

If you have run or are planning to run H1 Keep on the Shadowfell or H2 Thunderspire Labyrinth you can see the expansions to familiar areas and module monsters. If you want to run adventures based out of Winterhaven, Fallcrest, Harkenwold or Hammerfast the story ties will help quite a bit. The nice thing is even if you are not going to run a game based out of Nentir Vale the stories hooks are generic enough most will still work for you with little or minor modification or you can just ignore them altogether and just use the monsters. OK, that's the good.

What's the bad and why did I take off a star on the review, then? Price really. There are 184 monsters in this 127 page book.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Seth J. Albano on September 4, 2011
Format: Game
THE GOOD: As a guy who must and will own all things 4th edition, I picked this up primarily because well, it's a 4th edition book and I really like those things. To my surprise, however, I found it be the best monster book in the whole system thus far, even supplanting my old favorite the Dark Sun Creature Catalog. The reasons for this are twofold; first of all, in addition to a random assortment of new and classic monsters, the book focuses on actual factions and power groups present in the Nentir Vale, and secondly the sheer amount of flavor text makes even the most seemingly mundane entries pop with interesting hooks. These two elements combine to create a book that's just as useful for adventure-planning as it is encounter-planning, and I really appreciate that.

While the book is short compared to pretty much any other 4e monster gallery, it makes up for this with the addition of a few useful tools. First up is the double-sided poster map, which has four different encounter locations all done out for you nice and smooth. I have a lot of dungeon tiles myself so this isn't the most useful thing in the world to me, but I ALWAYS welcome new maps, particularly generic ones that don't look like I stole them from a module (I do that, sue me). More importantly, however, are the creature tokens. I LOVE these! There are 10 different sheets, each with an average of 30 tokens to represent the different monsters presented in the book or as placeholders for other creatures. For a group like mine who previously used pennies, bottlecaps, and small rocks with rubberbands wrapped around them to represent different characters on the battlemap, these tokens are like adding hundreds of miniatures to our collection.
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