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D&D Basic Set Rulebook (B/X ed.) (Basic)
by Andrew K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/15/2016 13:05:43

This is a good scan of the product. The text is clear, and I cannot see any evidence of anti-aliasing or blurring of the letters when zoomed in. These two PDFs work fine on my old, underpowered tablet, zoomed in on my phone, and on my Kindle (not all PDFs sold here load quickly and work properly on these three devices). The bookmarks are well done.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
D&D Basic Set Rulebook (B/X ed.) (Basic)
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D&D Companion Set (BECMI Ed.) (Basic)
by Andrew K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/15/2016 13:04:17

This is a good scan of the product. The text is clear, and I cannot see any evidence of anti-aliasing or blurring of the letters when zoomed in. These two PDFs work fine on my old, underpowered tablet, zoomed in on my phone, and on my Kindle (not all PDFs sold here load quickly and work properly on these three devices). The bookmarks are well done.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
D&D Companion Set (BECMI Ed.) (Basic)
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Monster Manual (4e)
by Denys C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/15/2016 08:15:18

High quality content and graphics.


This product's scan quality is also superior, as opposed to some of the older D&D modules and sourcebooks I have purchased from DriveThru RPG in the past; the latter may have excellent content, but they are obvious scans of adequate quality.


I hope to see the same scan quality in future purchases, as i have seen in the D&D (4th) Monster Manual.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Monster Manual (4e)
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Spelljammer: Adventures in Space (2e)
by Simon H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/15/2016 02:14:15

Unless you're a big fan of D&D 2nd edition as a rulebook this leaves a lot to be desired. Given a few mistakes in the actual book (what's a ships spelljammer rating again (SR) because you give two different examples which disagree entierly on rounding up or rounding down) and the actual clunky rules involved it probably only gets 2 stars as a rulebook.


However there's a reason that D&D is on an entire third revision since then and that's probably not why you're interested in this. And as a source of ideas and materials this book can really shine. Frankly most fantasy settings ignore space to a ridiculous degree given how powerful and prideful the wizards are usually getting. Seriously, in many fantasy settings it should be a surprise that some wizard hasn't taken getting to the moon as a challenge... and then succeeded. Spelljammer gives you tools and ideas on how to handle this, especially if your cosmology isn't especially scientific.


It's hard to say how much of the book could be useful to the average DM. Some stuff, like ideas about the Giff, Neogi, and Illithids can be pretty useful to just about anyone. Other stuff, like the phlogiston, isn't going to work for too many people. Basically you should treat this as a mix and match grab bag of ideas that you're still going to have to kludge a little to make work for more modern rulesets. On the flipside there's a lot of stuff here that can be easily converted in different ways. Want some basics for a fantasy extraterrestial invasion of your campaign world? The info on the Neogi and Illithids, especially their ships, is excellent. Want to run a campaign about a mad wizard striving to get to space? This is THE book you need for the climax to that. Want to try adding some sort of intergalactic travel to your setting? The book provides several different drives, some possibly useful rules and considerations about travel time and even if you don't like the phlogiston you could do a quick bodge and just call it hyperspace.


All in all it's not a brilliant product but it is potentially a very useful one.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Spelljammer: Adventures in Space (2e)
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D&D Basic Set - DM's Rulebook (BECMI ed.) (Basic)
by Paul B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/15/2016 00:44:34

I had bought this boxed set in the 80's, and am very happy that there is a way to re-purchase it without paying ridiculously high, but understandable, prices to own it again.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
D&D Basic Set - DM's Rulebook (BECMI ed.) (Basic)
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D&D Basic Set - Player's Manual (BECMI ed.) (Basic)
by Paul B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/15/2016 00:41:01

The scans are beautiful, and FINALLY having this book again...WOW! Nostalgia overload.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
D&D Basic Set - Player's Manual (BECMI ed.) (Basic)
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DDEX3-06 No Foolish Matter (5e)
by Stephen H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/13/2016 04:07:17

DDEX3-06 took my group 4 hours and was still not finished. The story was excellent, but was too complex. As the DM, I really enjoyed it, but the tools to share the story with the players weren't sufficient. In this setting (solving an interesting problem with combat), finishing with the combat meant the story of the problem was devalued. With such a good story, this was a shame.


If I ran this again, I'd railroad PCs into sequential encounters so the story shone. Certainly, I would need to find a better way to run the tavern setting, as this sort of scenario with different characters all having something to share is difficult to do well in a 2-hour RPG.


Though fun, the imposition of a minute of incapacitating madness in combat was cruel. Better directions for these grossly imbalanced elements is needed, or more thoughtful play-testing.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
DDEX3-06 No Foolish Matter (5e)
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Mines of Madness (Next)
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/12/2016 19:45:40

I'm not a person who usually takes the time to do a review on anything but this adventure is one serious kick butt one. It was designed for a competition. I wouldn't recommend it for players that aren't very careful because when they say it was designed to kill the players they aren't kidding. I actually learned a fair amount on how to create a good trap from this one.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Mines of Madness (Next)
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World Builder's Guidebook (2e)
by Claude L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/12/2016 14:26:22

Found it very useful... used it to randomly to finish populating my world.... came up with a unique combination that value added to my campaign.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
World Builder's Guidebook (2e)
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DDAL04-14 The Darklord (5e)
by Patrick N. F. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/12/2016 14:07:39

I really enjoyed the Dark Lord. The story was well thought out although Strahd could have been tougher an opponent to deal with.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
DDAL04-14 The Darklord (5e)
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An Icy Heart (3.0)
by Megan R. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 08/10/2016 12:13:59

Do you pay any attention to prophecy? One says there's a white dragon poised to attack, another says nothing but an icy grave awaits those who visit its lair...


Said lair is located in a high mountain range, the sort where the snow and ice never really goes away. Locals call it Krikk’s Range, to the rest of the world it's the Cloudtouch Mountains (or, of course, any suitable mountain range in your own campaign world). The map for the lair itself first appeared as part of the October 2001 offering in the Map-of-the-Week series on the Wizards of the Coast website (as of the day of writing, it's still there if you use the link in the PDF, but the bits you'll need are also included in the PDF in case they've gone by the time you look for it).


Now, Krikk the white dragon is a remarkable beast, she limits the area over which she holds sway and although she takes tribute in return for not eating the locals she doesn't ask for more than they can afford and has even been known to help protect them from barbarian raiders. Local lordlings have been unsuccessful in ousting her: heroes never return and mercenaries are bought off. Still, a nearby king alarmed by the prophecies he's heard, is now looking for adventurers... and that's just one of the hooks provided to get the party up there. There's also some information for parties inclined to gather it (or to access bardic knowledge, if a bard is around).


Although a map is supplied, only one chamber in the lair is described in any detail. Krikk is presented in great detail, not just a stat block but loads of information about what she'll do... and an impressive amount of material to assist you if the party is willing to enter into negotiation with her. There are also notes on her current projects and plans, her assistant and more, including a new magic item and a new spell.


It's a nice straightforward adventure for high-level characters, with the considerable support for those characters who want to try talking to Krikk a bonus. If it does come to a fight, though, there's ample material on how she will give battle too!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
An Icy Heart (3.0)
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War of Dragons (3.5)
by Megan R. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 08/10/2016 12:08:44

The backstory tells of a township living in harmony with a gold dragon, seeing to her needs in return from genuine protection (as in, actually defending them rather than running a protection racket!) until a marauding black dragon with evil intent came along... now the town is victimised by the black dragon and their gold defender is nowhere to be found! In this high-level adventure, it's up to the party to sort things out however they can.


Several hooks are provided to help you catch the party's attention and get them to the town, Silversands by name. This can be located anywhere suitable in your campaign world, you need somewhere vaguely coastal - anything from the seaside to a large river will do - that's near a mountain range and which has a nearby marsh as well.


The adventure itself is primarily site-based, the sites being Silversands itself and two detailed encounter areas. There's a reasonable amount of information provided about Silversands, but plenty of scope for you to develop it further. There's plenty of information to be had there if the party asks around a bit. If the party heads up into the mountains, random encounters - with monsters and people - are provided. Some of these will present quite a challenge in terms of combat, even for such a high-level party. Likewise, the nearby marshes have several random encounters for those who wish to visit them.


Both dragons - the gold and the black interloper - have established lairs which have been described although there's only a map supplied for one of them. There are also copious amounts of information about both dragons, to facilitate the characters meeting with them.


It's all fairly open-ended, the party can decide how to deal with the situation, which is not quite as straightforward as it appears. Some suggestions are provided for follow-on adventures, but it really depends how they handled this situation! It should make for an interesting challenge for a high-level party, possibly even a final fling before they settle down...



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
War of Dragons (3.5)
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Mines of Madness (Next)
by Ben F. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/06/2016 19:20:42

This is a fun way to spend one or two good live sessions. I worked up some extra ways to earn points beyond those listed in the optional scoring system and ran it as a miniature competition between three teams via forum posts, and they had a blast. The skeletal dwarven miners encounter is significantly harder than the rest of the mine, especially if the party also attracts the lizard skeletons from the pit, and especially if the party is in the pit. Despite that, only one of my teams had a TPK, and only three deaths between all the teams other than that (one from a character walking into the nether portal and two at the sacrificial altar).


The DM should be prepared to either flip back and forth between the text and the combat encounters a lot or else have the encounters separated so that he/she can easily reference both. Other than a few minor tweaks to fully convert this adventure to 5e (and those tweaks aren't fully necessary, just helpful), this adventure is ready to do its job of thrilling your players with some life-or-death traps, combat, and puzzles. Have fun!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Mines of Madness (Next)
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White Plume Mountain Revised (3.5)
by Robert N. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/05/2016 13:07:18

This is a really fun adventure for new players -- one of my favorite modules. This edition has been adapted for 3.5, but I went ahead and played it for 5e. (To make things easier, I just downloaded some premade characters between levels 6-8. The module has a lot of background information and is easy and delightful read.


The encounters have more of an emphasis on traps and puzzles instead of campaigns, but it's good for players and GMs who are still somewhat new. Good readable text and internal consistency. Probably good for 3-4 players, possibly more.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
White Plume Mountain Revised (3.5)
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DDAL04‐06 The Ghost (5e)
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/04/2016 06:49:07

DDAL04-06 The Ghost is the sixth adventure for Season 4, which is also titled "Part Four of Misty Fortunes and Absent Hearts". This review does contain spoilers, so please do not read below if you haven't played the adventure. The reviewer has played and run the adventure.
Yet another Season 4 disappointment, here is another example of an adventure that has tons of potential, and falls completely flat. The sad thing is I really enjoyed this adventure as a player, but after reading it I see that 90% of that was because I had a great DM. Here are the low-lights, along with very brief sprinkles of high-lights.
Encounters:
This adventure is broken up into three encounters, which in itself isn't bad, but when you dissect said encounters you discover this event is another hugely disappointing plot disaster. Part 1 of the adventure shows an estimated duration of 3-hours, Part 2 is listed at 15 minutes, and Part 3 (the final encounter) is listed at 45 minutes. Again, not necessarily bad, until you break down Part 1 and compare them to the other two.
Part 1 of this adventure is broken up into basically three section: and encounter with some elves, a fight with Ettercap they are hunting, and two senseless random-ish encounters. Again, not necessarily bad, but then you realize the entire section is meaningless to the overall adventure. It is basically a huge random encounter in a shiny new dress that in the large scope of things has nothing to do with the Season 4 storyline. There is a small reference in Adventure Hooks that sort of links it to 4-5, but overall it's a lame excuse to get the party interested in the adventure.
In fact, you start the encounter as basically HOSTILE (if you use the 5th edition social interactions of friendly, indifferent, or hostile - which the author does not), and really if you want you can blow off the entire encounter and still have the option to just move on to Part 2 with no consequences. There is also an entire (printed) page devoted to how "spooky" the Quivering Forest is, which frankly is useless fluff that really doesn't go anywhere.
Bottom line, is NO reason at all to do this encounter, which means that 3-hours of this adventure are either a waste of time or excluded all together. Now, the DM could spin things to say the party is lost and need the elves' help to move on to Part 2 (which is what my DM did), but the written adventure really is not laid out that way.
The fact that you meet these elves at the point of an arrow sets the encounter up to end on bad terms, and there are several paragraphs that detail how the elves attack the party. Maybe the wording on the encounter is bad, but I overall it is presented as an encounter that could be easily bypassed. If I'm going to spend 3-hours in an adventure, I want it to lead up to the final encounter, and not "feel" optional.
Finally, the end of Part 1 is basically another two random encounters that also have nothing to do with the overall adventure. With 4-6 the season is six adventures deep, and there seem to be more random encounters in adventures than ACTUAL Ravenloft adventures -- with the exception of 4-4. Oh look ... more needle blights and awakened trees ... not very original either.
Part 2 is the BEST part of this adventure, the characters meet up once again with Jeny Greenteeth. In fact, Jeny is the best thing about Season 4 so far, so hat's off to whomever thought to use a green hag as a role-playing device. This is the only reason the adventure isn't 1-star, as Jeny is presented well and makes for a very entertaining encounter. However, it isn't enough to make up for this adventure's shortcomings, and should be more than 15 minutes in length.
Part 3 is also not bad, it is the final encounter, and there is an actual "ghost" in the adventure (unlike there being now Seer in 4-5). The encounter itself is straight-forward, and had a nice Ravenloft feel.
Magic Item:
The Seer and The Ghost have another thing in common - an awful magic item reward. Just because it's Ravenloft doesn't mean the magic items have to be curse, or in this case, disgusting. The worst part is it comes out of a meaningless encounter at the end of Part 1. There was great opportunity to create a cool new "version" of this magic item to fit the theme of the Domain of Dread that could actually help the party later on in the season, but instead an item was presented that VERY few characters would want. When I played this event it was left on the table.
Experience:
The XP in The Ghost is slightly better balanced than 4-5, but not by much. This poor Season 4 trend is countered by the mid-season XP reward that easily jacks the characters a level, and the chance to return to the Realms if the party wishes.
However ...
Today, 8/3/2016, AL Staff took the short road and said anyone spending as little as 20 downtime can leave Barovia whenever they want. What a cop-out. What about those of us who struggled through the so-so adventures of season in the hopes of being successful against the Dark Lord and leave RL victorious? Sorry, not a fan of this move.
Overview:
If it weren't for Jeny and a not-terrible final encounter, this would have been another 1-star review. When 3/4 of the adventure feels like and is written as a random encounter, the adventure feels like a waste of time. Another adventure not worth $3.99, very disappointing.
Editorial for DM’s Guild Staff
There are a lot of 5-star reviews for some of these AL adventures, and nothing written. If you’re going to “click” a review of something, then require someone to put down as to why they think it is good or bad – and have a minimum word requirement. Else the review should be rejected.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
DDAL04‐06 The Ghost (5e)
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