Top positive review
42 people found this helpful
The Dungeon Master's Guide is dead; long live the Dungeon Master's Kit!
on October 26, 2010
I got this book last week. Good stuff. People not playing 4th edition Dungeons and Dragons may be wondering what to buy and I would say if you're interested in creating your own world or just running your own game with published adventures, this is all you need.
Wizards of the Coast has been releasing Essentials products for a couple months now, but most of them are either for kids -- i.e. the Red Box Starter Kit -- or current 4e players and DMs -- i.e. the Rules Compendium. This is the box you need if you want to DM and don't already have the Dungeon Master's Guide. The DMG is actually a good book, but then they released the DMG 2 and maybe even the DMG 3. The Essentials line seems to be saying, "Forget all that stuff and all those supplements. This is all you need to play the game!" I couldn't agree more. The heart of the kit is the Dungeon Master's Book, which contains all the charts, rules, tips and examples you need to get a game up and running. Encounter design; combat; travel across the land; skill challenges. It's all in there.
WotC has made it incredibly easy to get into the game. You don't even need any of the player's books anymore. Just download the Character Builder from their website and buy this kit. Voila! You're roleplaying your own game for $26.
Of course, they know you're going to get hooked on the game and want to buy their other books -- or tiles or miniatures -- so they're not worried about cannabilizing the sales of their other products. Love it but want to create a PC with pen & paper? Buy the Player's Handbooks I, II & III or the softcover "Heroes of" series. Want to create dungeons filled with monsters of your choosing? Then buy the Monster Vault or all 3 Monster Manuals.
One more thing. I'm only giving it 4 stars because it's really not for people who already have their products. So if you already have the Dungeon Master Guides or even the Rules Compendium, some of the stuff is necessarily repeated here so save your money.