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Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords Base Set
Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords Base Set
Offered by MyQuickMart
Price: $46.39
59 used & new from $32.49

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 5 star game with 3 star quality control - but well worth the price of admission!, October 21, 2014
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There are a lot of good reviews on this one so I will keep it short and too the point.

This is a great game, for the right players.

It's not really a board game, nor a deck-builder, nor trading card game, nor an RPG

It is, however, a great game and really unique and satisfies an RPG, card-game, and cooperative itch for me.

Does it have some quality control issues, yes. Is it worth it? Absolutely!

The amount of game that comes in this box is truly remarkable - hours and hours of cooperative game play. The mechanics are really tight, pretty easy to learn, and card collecting is addictive if you play it right, as in, force yourself to randomly put cards in the scenario decks so that getting a good card is random, surprising, and fun, and very addictive; playing this right turns this box into a self-contained collectible card game. Stacking your deck is tempting, but like cheating at a video game, ultimately ruins the fun.

Similarly, getting the full story benefit requires doing some story telling work on your part to make sense of the cards you draw - which I find fun. The game doesn't play itself, or you, but the random element to the cards can be really fun if you engage them. My friends and I enjoy constructing a story based on the cards and our characters.

I really enjoy how much the players control the game, but the cards are essentially the DM. Adding a lot of replayability IMO

5 stars for fun, 4 for quality control.

If you want to interact with the pathfinder world and character with your friends and have imagination, this is a great game

Monster Manual (D&D Core Rulebook)
Monster Manual (D&D Core Rulebook)
by Wizards RPG Team
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $29.88
98 used & new from $25.82

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ahhhh real monsters!, September 30, 2014
I have a friend that I have enticed to play d&d (the 5th edition thereof) and the monster manual helped make it an easy sell.

Just like the 5e PHB the art is great (although I must concur that I prefer 3e owlbears) but every page is adorned with a magnificent illustration. Best monster manual art yet, hands down. Not only are there full color pictures there are sketch book-esque supplemental pictures in corners and along the margin that really make this feel like a real magical reference guide.

Just like the PHB and the rest of 5e this monster manual is rules light and flavor text heavy, which is great. This what got my friend excited to play d&d, she loves the richness of each entry and takes notes on details about where they live, etc. It's cute.

Also, as the cover does indicate, they focused on tried an true d&d monsters, the classics. There are over 30 pages on dragons! And just like the rest of the book, reading about each type of dragon helps fill in the subtext of the world where these monsters live. Just like the entry on hobgoblins gives some much needed explanation of where they fit into the goblinoid world.

Another friend of mine (who DMs our 3.5 game) went to buy the PHB and ended up getting the monster manual as well even though he has no plan to DM 5e (that task is my privilege) simply because of how enticing this book is to flip through.

Works easily for reference, alphabetical as always, but they came up with some help sub-categories, and pretty much kept it one monster to a page, which means almost every single monster gets a picture.

But then, for ease of reference, they have an animal section in the back in an appendix, without extensive pictures, because we know what a wolf looks like, right? And then another appendix provides information on NPCs.

Since these are all "greatest hits" monsters I don't see why an experienced DM couldn't house rule any specific monster abilities or mechanics they wanted from previous d&d additions. Just like everything else about 5e, this books provides a simple enticing reference that invites players to delve into their imagination and play the game the way they want.

I can't wait to roll out some of these monsters against my friends. I really like how the book is organized (wit heasy to read tables of ability scores, for instance) as I hate flipping through a book and skimming a paragraph for info and feeling unorganized during a game. i used to transfer important info before a game and now I don't need to.

As with the PHB, the construction is really solid.

I bought this game at my local game store because I wanted to support Cathy and Tabitha so I have had the MM for about 10 days already, and I flip through it almost when I have a minute or two.

As I said in my PHB review I recommend 5e for people looking to a different way to play d&d or for getting new players into the game, and I stand by that. This reference is obviously a necessary supplement for running a 5e game, and one which will help entice those new players or make old players excited for a new take on the game.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 4, 2014 12:01 AM PDT

Complete Adventurer: A Guide to Skillful Characters of All Classes (Dungeons & Dragons d20 3.5 Fantasy Roleplaying Supplement)
Complete Adventurer: A Guide to Skillful Characters of All Classes (Dungeons & Dragons d20 3.5 Fantasy Roleplaying Supplement)
by Jesse Decker
Edition: Hardcover
72 used & new from $16.92

5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best 3.5 supplement books, September 21, 2014
Great 3.5 supplement. I picked up a copy used and it turns out to be one of my more highly referenced 3.5 books. It's applicable to players of a variety of classes and has some pretty interesting classes to. Scout is an amazing class, for instance.

The feats in this book alone make it a great addition to a collection. Some books are so focused that they only cover a small portion of the game, this book has a focus, skills (the bread and butter of 3.5 imho) but covers a breadth of aspects from classes to feats to spells to equipment and then "organizations" which adds great story detail options for both players and DMs alike. But it's slim and concise. It's almost like a focused little mini-PHB that follows the same format and makes it easy to reference.

There are also a couple of classic DnD or 3.0 things in this book that didn't make it into 3.5 in any other form that I am aware of. For instance, the Ninja class can be found here which is cool because Oriental Adventures never got a 3.5 update. In that way it' kind of a greatest hits list, which is another place where the best 3.5 books shine.

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Core Rulebook
by Jason Bulmahn
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $30.47
102 used & new from $18.94

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Review of the BOOK ITSELF, September 19, 2014
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This is not a review of the Pathfinder SYSTEM, which is good, although I have a few issues with it, for instance, CMB and CMD although a great concept has some weirdness where a tiny creature is very easy to grapple, but a tiny creature should be hard to hit with a touch attack...

Anyway I just want to submit a quick review of the product here being the ACTUAL BOOK ITSELF.

First off, I love the illustrations in the book. They are fantastic. Love the distinct style that really helps make Pathfinder feel like it's in it's own world apart from DnD even though this is really like DnD 3.75. These illustrations honestly made me say, man I want to roll a dwarf ranger (so I did). The layout is quite good, and pretty easy to reference. I like that this is essentially a PHB and DMG rolled into one.

But it is literally a joke (around my gaming table anyway) at how easily these books fall apart. My friends tease me that I am not a "Real" gamer because my book still has a cover on it. I take really good care of my rpg books and even my binding is starting to separate. Normally I keep pages in my books for reference but I don't do that with my CRB because I think it can't take the added stress on the binding. That is kind of a bummer. I really hope my CRB never looks like my friends tattered copies, but I am not hopeful.

All in all, great system that has plenty of fanboys to defend it (honestly the worst thing about Pathfinder are some of the obnoxious Pathfinder fanboys) and the art and layout are good. The book construction is bad.

The Joy of Signing (Second Edition)
The Joy of Signing (Second Edition)
by Lottie L. Riekehof
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $19.81
438 used & new from $0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Honestly one of the better textbooks I have ever used (for any subject), September 19, 2014
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This is a great textbook for a subject that is pretty hard to write a textbook about.

Good layout, easy reference, very clear black and white pictures, and who can argue with the price?

Challenger RPG a Free Roleplaying Game
Challenger RPG a Free Roleplaying Game
Price: $0.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The potential for hours of fun for free, provided you have an imagniation, September 19, 2014
I originally downloaded this book for a plane ride to visit my family because I wanted to find an rpg that would be rules-lite enough for them to get into it.

But I ended up having a great time just reading this book on the plane because its written in such a way to amuse any familiar with the genre. A lot of the rules and description are written in a somewhat tongue-in-cheek manner that I found delightful. I also found myself saying "amen" to some of the rules which were a clear revision to some typically rpg staples. I also really appreciated that this system was designed for people to have fun with their imagination and not get bogged down in very specific rules.

Ultimately, my family declined to try out tabletop rpgs and therefore I never got to try out the system in a game. Although I still want to if I can find the right group of friends to try it out. This is the unfortunate thing about the rpg hobby, it offers so much potential, that so many decline to discover even though all it takes is a little imagination, just like this book.

Since I first read this book 5e of dnd came out and i think that might actually be an easier way to get somebody into the hobby (note that I hated 4e if that provides any context)

I am thinking about trying this system after I get my friends hooked with 5e (hopefully) because I know that the people I play pathfinder and 3.5 will obviously not bother with a free system. As a result this book has a very unclear audience.

But I think it's great, and really support what the author is doing. And reading through it gave me plenty of ideas for home brew rules for my house games.


Dungeons & Dragons 3.5 Player's Handbook
Dungeons & Dragons 3.5 Player's Handbook
by Wizards RPG Team
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $34.90
81 used & new from $25.00

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For those just discovering 3.5, this is a PHB, you need one, August 29, 2014
Someone in a different review said: "who is the market for this book? People just discovering 3.5 now?"

Yes, it is. AS someone who "discovered" 3.5 later, I am glad they produced this book. If you own a different copy of a 3.5 PHB then obviously don't buy this; the extra stuff is nice as a perk but not worth buying a new book.

However I really like my copy, and I think it's a better construction than the older 3.5 books around the table.

I think 3.5 is a good system, and I hope it lives on and continues to attract new players that need to buy new PHBs. As I said in my review of the DMG, you can get this info on the internet, but if your going to game, then you should buy the core books for your own reference and enjoyment. And for all that people complain about WoTC (I know I have) I really don't resent them making some money on peopel continuing to enjoy their product, it's hard to begrudge them for trying to sell a PHB!

As for 3.0, based on the 3.0 books floating around the table when I game, I think 3.5 seems like a clear improvement that fixes many problems. There are still some pretty broken things in 3.5. As with pathfinder for that matter. Personally 4e didn't do it for me, and I recommend 3.5 over it. I actually like the 5e system but its very different than 3.5.

I don't see 3.5 going away any time soon. If you need a 3.5 PHB, this is the one I recommend buying, it's pretty simple.

Premium Dungeons & Dragons 3.5 Dungeon Master's Guide with Errata
Premium Dungeons & Dragons 3.5 Dungeon Master's Guide with Errata
by Wizards RPG Team
Edition: Hardcover
32 used & new from $59.95

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Its a DMG. It's the one to get if your into 3.5., August 29, 2014
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It's exactly what it say it is. It's the most complete 3.5 DMG with Errata.

I think 3.5 is a good system personally and worth using over pathfinder at times because it's easier to house-rule, or maybe I am just more comfortable with it.

All of the information here can be found on the internet, you could probably even get the pdf online. But if your going to play the game, you should get the core books. Even if you don't DM the DMG has some good stuff to reference, specifically items and certain rules.

In terms of construction, this is the best 3.5 DMG out there, the cover is really nice, somehow a different material than my buddies DMG. There is even a play mat tucked into the back. I bought this to have my own list of wondrous items specifically, but reference it more than that.

Personally, I liked to have books to flip through rather than webpages, but that's personally preference. I know DMs that won't let you use it unless it's in a book that you have, which I think is a bit draconian, but even the amount of material on the web, I get it. It also breaks the feel a little to google search "best wizard items 3.5." Also a DMG is handy reference when your DM unexpectedly decides to grant your character a wish.

Like I said, I think if your going to game, you should get at least the core books, and if your going to play DnD then I think 3.5 is a good a versatile system, and if your going to play 3.5 and want a DMG this is the one you should buy.

Construction is good.

The Year of No Mistakes
The Year of No Mistakes
by Cristin O'Keefe Aptowicz
Edition: Paperback
Price: $13.95
36 used & new from $8.03

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I liked it. But I open "Everything is everything" more ..., August 28, 2014
I liked it. But I open "Everything is everything" more often.

Player's Handbook (Dungeons & Dragons)
Player's Handbook (Dungeons & Dragons)
by Wizards RPG Team
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $28.73
97 used & new from $23.91

12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Doesn't replace 3.5 but provides streamlined rules for different kind of play (or players), August 28, 2014
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I play 3.5 and love/hate it. Mostly I love it but sometimes the rules get me frustrated when all I want to do is role-play and I need like 3 skills, a feat, and I have to make like 3 checks just to jump over a table (before anybody posts, this is an exaggeration - but my DM would force me to make at least a jump and balance check).

BUT, all the rules, and books, and home-brew stuff (and pathfinder) are also great. There is a rule for everything, even some that make no sense, but hey, there's a rule for that. And yet 3.5 remains incredibly flexible, and breakable, but then the DM rolls out broken monsters and its great. Never really played 2nd or 1st edition but some people really like em'. 3.5 didn't replace them and 5th edition didn't replace 3.5.

3.5 is still out there and will continue to be played and remains a very easy system to adapt and modify.

But 3.5 isn't always easy system to play, and 5th is. And that's a good thing.

Because 5th edition DOES replace 4th IMHO. If you are going to make the game easier to play, don't focus on combat, which 4th edition did. But 5th edition focuses on role-play, the whole point of DND for me personally. Role-play and play freedom, let me explain.

5th edition IS streamlined (major overhaul, skills pretty much gone - A/C is super simple - no more 5 foot steps, modifiers are much reduced) and it has game mechanics that promote role-play and even tables for rolling traits, bonds, and even flaws (personality, not physical) such as, "if there is a plan you forget or ignore it." Do you have to follow this? No, but if you do you gain inspiration points that give you advantage on a roll. Basically you get to roll 2 dice. The math on rolling two dice is a lot simpler than, mod here, ranks this, plus misc. mod this equals... Now it boils down to, 2 is better than one. All of this serves to make the game a lot more approachable to new players, but not by trying to sell them on combat (like 4e did) which will never work because none of us play the game for combat (or at least no one I know).

If you want streamlined combat well... video games are making millions (maybe billions?) of dollars a year for a reason.

But why does tabletop gaming have it all over video games though? Freedom to do ANYTHING. 3.5 gave us one kind of freedom (I can't speak of 2nd edition or anything earlier) by giving us a huge amount of rules and options to draw from that if you were willing to commit yourself to learning, provided literally limitless options. COmbat was fun in this context because you came up with some bizare cross-class with certain feats and items that allowed you to do something unique and interesting and power (sometimes totally broken).

5th edition gives us a different kind of freedom with much simplified rules that are more intuitive. All checks match to an ability (even saves) proficiency makes it much more intuitive for the lay person too. You want to jump over that table? Roll 1d20, plus dex modifier (obviously). Are you proficient, add 2, done. One roll, make it? Cool. It's also easier on the DM. I would feel comfortable DMing 5th edition and I am trying to talk my friends into trying it out with me because I think they could handle the system and would enjoy knowing what the hell they were doing. I have been selling my friends on table-top rpgs for years on the basis that "you can do literally anything" but I have done a lot of the math for them. Now I think they could handle their own characters stats. Also,I think the role-play rules will be great for my friends who are reluctant to come out of their shells right away.

It's not always about breaking the game, and WOTC has clearly tried to unbreakable a lot of things and put rational floors and ceilings (and reduce min-maxing). Yes, it feels more limited in this fashion, but it sucks in 3.5 when one player has an A/C of 31 and everyone else in the party has an A/C around 20. 5th edition reduces this possibility by reducing possibilities, but that opens up the world to your imagination over thinking only in terms of game mechanics. This is good for people who don't want to spend hours thinking about character creation and just want to play and not be told, sorry, you can't climb that because you don't have ranks in climb.

I know that pathfinder addressed some of these issues but that is still more "hardcore" that 5th edition IMHO.

And that's a good thing! If you don't have friends that you would like to game with who aren't into all the rules or are intimidated by RPGs, or you have never thought to yourself, man I just want to jump in and play instead of looking-up specifics half the time, then ignore this reivew (and this edition).

If you are perfectly happy with 3.5 and/or pathfinder, awesome. It's not going anywhere. I know I will keep playing both.

But 5th edition is a happy addition to my shelf (where 4th was not) because it offers a different way to play the game, and a system that is very good in my opinion; the care, and play-testing really shows!

Are there problems? Yes, the dragon-born draconic bloodline sorcerer thing is weird... Also dragonborn seem a little broken to me compared to other races, although all the races have received some love. I really enjoy the specifics of forest versus rock gnomes, hill dwarves versus mountain dwarves, and the flavor text is great!

Do I need the book to give me little blurbs on dwarf racial characteristics, what they are like, how they treat other races? No. But it's fun, and immersive. Do I need the book to give me sub-race characteristics? No, I could (or the DM could) do that on my/her own right. Could I streamline 3.5 rules? Yes, but I would probably spend a lot of time getting the kinks out. I've tried actually. But hey, do I eve need any book at all? I could just make up all the rules! I could completely invent my own game! And I bet it wouldn't be half as good as this one.

And in terms of what you pay for, it's great to get a flavor text, and a pretty complete system (I could DM a game right out of the PHB, there are even monsters in the back!) and the art!

The art is truly the best I have seen! I love to flip through the older books for the art, I am dorky like that. And 3.5 has some good art, and some is, OK. Pathfidner had a great art style IMHO. But the art in this edition raises the bar! and it is well integrated onto each highly readable page. I would like to note that I appreciate the lack of chain-mail bikinis. Once again, I am trying to get MORE of my friends to play, not fewer. The art would attract many and offend few. Which is a good thing.

So, in terms of what you pay for, good system, good layout, immersive flavor text and play ideas, and amazing art across every page. And it's complete enough you could DM right out of the PHB. At 50 bucks it's a good deal, at 30 its a steal!

But best of all, 3.5 still exists! But this edition makes the tabletop gaming library more versatile and appealing. IF you think that's a good thing, and want to try a new take on a great game, I highly recommend this edition (for what it is - which isn't 3.75).

If your happy with what your playing. Then happy gaming!

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