Automotive Deals Best Books of the Month Shop Women's Clothing Learn more nav_sap_plcc_ascpsc Pink Floyd Fire TV Stick Sun Care Handmade school supplies Shop-by-Room Amazon Cash Back Offer harmonquest_s1 harmonquest_s1 harmonquest_s1  Amazon Echo  Echo Dot  Amazon Tap  Echo Dot  Amazon Tap  Amazon Echo Introducing new colors All-New Kindle Oasis Enter for the chance to win front row seats to Barbra Streisand Segway miniPro
Customer Review

17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best campaign setting for 4e yet., August 24, 2010
This review is from: Dark Sun Campaign Setting: A 4th Edition D&D Supplement (Hardcover)
The previous campaign settings for 4e, Forgotten Realms and Eberron respectively, were pretty good books in my opinion. If I had one complaint about those, is that the books thought for you too much. They told you exactly who was important, where was important, why they are important, and in some cases, what would happen if they ceased to be. While some may like the amount of detail put into the world, I do not. I can appreciate what Wizards of the Coast was trying to do with those worlds. They tried, and certainly succeeded, in making both settings living, breathing worlds, full of history and culture. I found the amount of information nice to read, but stifling to make adventures for, and thus continued playing the default campaign setting, the unnamed "points of light" world that Wizards introduced in 2008 as the core setting.

Dark Sun is, without a doubt, a world rich in history. It became apparent as soon as I opened the book and started reading. However, there is a major difference between the Dark Sun Campaign Setting book and the campaign setting books of Eberron and Forgotten Realms: the information here is bare minimum. It is still enough to give you a detailed look at the world, but scarce enough to let you truly take any area of the world and do as you wish with it. I have already run two games in this setting, and I love the amount of freedom the world gives me. In Forgotten Realms, they tell you why Goblins are here and why Goblins would never be here. In Dark Sun, any creature of any level can be found in the vicious wastes. They don't tell you "Silt Runners won't be here because...", and that's what the previous campaign settings did wrong. In short, this book doesn't think for you, it thinks WITH you.

I can only hope that the future campaign setting books are designed like this. I know in full that the design of this book was an intentional throwback to the old book, and I say keep at it. Give me just barely enough information to know what is going on with the world. Keep it's true history hidden. Keep it's ruler's intentions secret. Let the players, not the world, decide what evils the enemies are up to. For the first time since the core ruleset came out, I have felt a world offer unlimited potential to both players and Dungeon Masters, and it is good.

I am, however, not without complaints. An earlier reviewer had mentioned there are far too many instances of complete page references, sentences that say "see page xx for details" and this is a legitimate excuse. Even during initial casual browsing, I found no less than three instances of it. Two, even one, is inexcusable from a powerhouse such as Wizards of the Coast. Other complaints I have are superficial, such as Wizard's continuing use of Wayne Reynolds, who is quite possibly the worst fantasy artist I've seen. Still, the good far outweigh the bad, and I feel that Dark Sun will be the best setting 4e has to offer for quite some time.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No

[Add comment]
Post a comment
To insert a product link use the format: [[ASIN:ASIN product-title]] (What's this?)
Amazon will display this name with all your submissions, including reviews and discussion posts. (Learn more)
This badge will be assigned to you and will appear along with your name.
There was an error. Please try again.
Please see the full guidelines here.

Official Comment

As a representative of this product you can post one Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
The following name and badge will be shown with this comment:
 (edit name)
After clicking the Post button you will be asked to create your public name, which will be shown with all your contributions.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.  Learn more
Otherwise, you can still post a regular comment on this review.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
System timed out

We were unable to verify whether you represent the product. Please try again later, or retry now. Otherwise you can post a regular comment.

Since you previously posted an Official Comment, this comment will appear in the comment section below. You also have the option to edit your Official Comment.   Learn more
The maximum number of Official Comments have been posted. This comment will appear in the comment section below.   Learn more
Prompts for sign-in


Track comments by e-mail
Tracked by 1 customer

Sort: Oldest first | Newest first
Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Sep 2, 2010 4:01:40 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 5, 2010 6:00:38 PM PDT
John Merrick says:
This was a strong review, but I think Wayne Reynolds is pretty great. I prefer him to any of their (WotC's) other artists.

Current artists.

*Just got the book, and I'm pretty sure Reynolds only did the cover. With the exception of maybe Wayne England's stuff more Reynolds would have been a improvement.
‹ Previous 1 Next ›