Dungeons and Dragons Core Rulebook Gift Set, 4th Edition
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Product Description

All three 4th Edition core rulebooks in one handsome slipcase. The Dungeons & Dragons Roleplaying Game has defined the medieval fantasy genre and the tabletop RPG industry for more than 30 years. In the D&D game, players create characters that band together to explore dungeons, slay monsters, and find treasure. The 4th Edition D&D rules offer the best possible play experience by presenting exciting character options, an elegant and robust rules system, and handy storytelling tools for the Dungeon Master.This gift set features a handsome slipcase containing all three of the 4th Edition D&D Roleplaying Game core rulebooks: the Players Handbook rulebook (320 pages), the Monster Manual rulebook (288 pages), and the Dungeon Masters Guide rulebook (224 pages).

Customer Reviews:

  • just started using, but like it so far
    Got this set for my husband for his birthday because a friend offered to DM a campaign for us. I've played a few game systems and am actually in a campaign using the very first edition rules, so I was curious to see how this one panned out.

    It did take some getting used to for me since I've not played the intervening editions. I have a few "beefs" about the lack of definitions in the player's handbook (like trying to find out what creatures are that are mentioned) and the index is almost useless (one page only), but those are pretty minor. Overall I like it, and my husband likes it, too.

    Warning- although this is the basic set, it is not simple to follow if you have never played. I've heard the creators say D&D is most often taught to new players by those who already play, so this is not a pick up and run with it system. I guess you could muddle through alone, but it would take work.

    I have heard people say the dice rolling is excessive, but things like that have always been at the discretion of the DM. I like the skills and feats as well as the way you can develop a character down a certain path. I also like that magic users and fighter types are actually both useful at lower levels.

    All in all, I recommend this for anyone who likes to game and loves fantasy rpgs. Enjoy!...more info
  • Cheap, cheap!
    What an amazing deal, I recieved all 3 new core books for the price of 2!...more info
  • the five year revision & the one year review
    About a year ago some of my friends wanted to see how bad 4th edition was going to be. After all we were enjoying 3.5 so what's the point of releasing a new edition after only five years, what couldn't wait two years before they released it? For those of you like me that found the level of detail that was in the 3rd editions was all of a sudden truncated. Needless to say I was a bit miffed. If you are wondering why it took me a year to review three books, then you are obviously missing the point. This is a review of 4e as a whole, not just the core rules. the first adventure that we played was shadowfell, and were impressed with the quality of the adventure. Not only did it have the entire adventure, but you could still use the encounter maps in further adventures. It also help set the tone of the regular campaign world, not fully explored, but still fun. The only set back from the modules is that they are more roll than role. Then the accessories started to roll in, to help build up the fledgling edition. Strike three, right? Wrong, the additional material is what the books were missing. and now it time for the online component. Until recently the websites for all of WOTC games were more like a tail on a gorilla. they wanted to start changing that. and so to get set for the real thing, they started with an open beta to see if it was worth it. And they managed to get their act together, at least for the website. (*to off camera* this review should be almost done right? the program suite isn't yet. oh yeah right the character builder.) Moving on to the Character Builder for those of you were hoping that the the CB would not be another etools, have a cookie. when th open beta came out for the program I gave a try to my suprise, not only did have the content from the books, and online, but you could add your own stuff, provided that there were some examples were already available. and if that wasn't enough, the power cards that came with the printed version of the character sheet (fully editable, just in case you like to say use real dice to role stats as opposed to the random number generators in the product) could show all the bonus to the attack and damage rolls for that power. the reason that it is titled the one year review was because unlike the MMOs that this version feels like, It takes time to come up with books of content, and to make sure that it dovetails in with what's already out there. the other thing that kind of irked me at the beginning was that it was so balanced that the mere adding of an unplaytested Magic item radically shifts the balance out of whack. but not in a terribly safe for the DM. That is it the review is done!...more info
  • Long time, no see
    I haven't played D&D since AD&D 2nd edition, and it's interesting to see the direction the game has taken over all these years. The game mechanics seem very much more streamlined and tight, with real emphasis on the PC's as heroic figures. Some topics in the PHB are introduced before the governing rules are fully explained (notably powers), which can be a bit confusing. The MM is very interesting, although most monsters' backgrounds lack depth; there's unique artwork for every critter, but not a lot of information about it. The DMG does a good job of explaining the role of the DM as storyteller and referee, but seems a bit bland. The artwork in the books is excellent for the most part, though what happened to Larry Elmore? Miniatures play has apparently become a requirement, but I'm not familiar with WOTC's pre-paintined figures. Ultimately I bought this out of curiousity, but not a serious intent to pick up the game again. It makes for a good read, and sparked enough interest to want to play.

    "If you want to stop a stagecoach, shoot the horses."
    - Arneson...more info
  • A good choice for me
    These books are excellent! I'm so glad I bought them. they arrived in a timely manner, and in fine condition. I have no complaints at all....more info
  • I hope people are starting to realize how good 4e really is
    Gone are the days of spending 1/3 of a session in a rule book, and gone are the days of having to look up grapple every time someone wants to use it. People say this edition is too cookie cutter and to video game-like. Boy do i feel bad for them. I've been DM'ing a group for a few weeks now and i can already say i love this edition 10x more than 3.5. Now it seems like every situation isnt a special situation that needs a rules check. The players were all new and could jump in fairly easily (with a little help from the wizards character generator). And making dungeons and encounters is a snap! The encounter builder mechanic is VERY useful and very in depth, but at the same time easy to use. I really like the way spells work and how BALANCED the classes are. Sure, every class fits into a 'role' like a video game, but weren't tabletops sort of the thing that invented these so called 'roles'? My group has a wonderful time playing 4e because of less 'forgettable rules' and more time for roleplaying and cinematic action. ...more info
  • A Fantastic New Edition
    I enjoyed reading the books for the 3rd edition of Dungeons & Dragons, but I never felt the need to play a game with the 3rd edition of Dungeons & Dragons. Time past, and I heard mutterings of a 4th edition, and I thought to myself, "Why so soon?" Wasn't their 3rd edition good enough?

    As it turns out, their 3rd edition wasn't good enough, because where that edition had me reading the core books and supplements out of idle interest, the 4th edition sprang from the page and insisted to be purchased. The ability to pick feats based on race or class made those selections have a little more of an impact on the final product i.e. your character. Also their new power system, which rewards a player like me that enjoyed getting new spells for my wizard in games like Baldur's Gate except that every class gets cool new things on pretty much every level.

    Add to that the strong visual representation of the game in action (i.e. a bit more of a board representation for the battle and dungeon system) and the Tables to help make your own content fit more comfortably in a game of this system, and you have a wonderful game system that mixes the openness of a pen and paper system, the nigh-instant gratification of a role-playing video game and the visual representation of a board game that tie everything together so well. Anyone who is skeptical or "old school" should at least give it a try, and anyone reading this as a means of considering a purchase should ask themselves this: do you like role-playing video games? Board games? Were you the kid making sticks and pinecones into swords and grenades when you played outside? Did you use your nerf toys to "hunt" the other "team"? In short, did you love to use your imagination? Do you still like to use your imagination? If so, then buy this, find some friends, and don't let the possible stigma of geek deter you. This is fun, contained simply and efficiently in three unassuming books.
    ...more info
  • Second edition still rules
    4 edition is for those who like their path chosen for them. Their actions limited to what some one else dictates. There is no freedom here. All charicters are created equal. No skill need to play....more info
  • something old, something new, something borrowed...
    I've gamed for a long time. I played some basic box set, first, second and 3.x edition. The new players handbook is quite a departure from the last edition. It offers a whole lot more than before, but it feels like the old basic Dungeons and Dragons from ages ago. If you can suspend any animosity and prejudice against the new system (hard I know), then you may find as I do that this is going to be a very fun ride. Lots of things that used to be randomly rolled are now either chosen (like ability stats), or standardized (like hit points) to avoid disparity that can lead to unpleasantness. Moving on.. this game forces teamwork for victory and survival, so if, like me, you find not a whole lot of coordination between teammates in combat this will either lead to a whole lot more dying, or a sea change in play. That change will make it a whole lot more fun for everyone. One word of caution though: don't force the transformation. People learn from their mistakes and it's best when playing this system to make them naturally. Making a new character can be accomplished in less than 30 minutes, so a new character is hardly a pain....more info
  • Finally, a D&D ruleset which my little sisters not only tolerate, but enjoy!
    You know what is great about the 4E rules for D&D? They made it easy, and fun, for NEW PLAYERS to get into the game. They simplified and streamlined a lot of the nit-picky stuff (which, granted, some people love), and made it easier to just jump into the game.

    What this means is that I can start an impromptu game with my little sisters, and actually keep and HOLD their attention all the way through an entire gaming session of about 2 hours. That is AMAZING! They have always liked the game, and the fun of the dice rolls, etc. What they DIDN'T like, was dying (or being knocked unconscious), limited spell use, confusing power rules, and almost no low level party members being able to to HEAL!

    With 4E, EVERYONE can heal with the new "healing surge" abilities. I don't know about anyone else, but my parties generally ALWAYS suffered from healing problems in their lower levels. Either because nobody was playing a cleric, or there weren't enough healing potions to go around. Mages/wizards can now cast spells whenever they please (only being able to cast magic missile once per day/rest cycle is a real bummer to a little girl who wants to play a magic casting bad-arse as her character!), and all of the powers quickly and easily divided up into "at will," "once per encounter," and, "daily" powers. Given the almost unlimited choices available in 3E and 3.5E, they would get confused, overwhelmed, and stop wanting to play. Most little girls do not want to sit down and do homework to "play."

    I am a 3E and 3.5E rule set owning DM, and I am here to say that 4E is not for everyone! But, if you are like me, and are trying to get new people into D&D, give 4E a try. I am fairly certain you will enjoy running a game for those people using 4E rules. I am switching over entirely to 4E for all new games I will be running hereafter. I will be hanging on to my 3E and 3.5E books, but those will be used for campaigns for D&D veterans. ;-)

    Enjoy!...more info
  • Where have all the roleplayers gone? long time passing!
    i'm an old gygaxian player. Wet my sword on 1st edition. was battle hardened in second, and mastered the art of RP in 3rd and 3.5

    i've played my share of other systems an always had a love hate relationship with D&D the game that birthed my love of story and fantasy. i've rolled with steve jackson, had coffee with several of the illustrators from 1st to 3rd editon, and even worked for my share of gaming companies.

    and i say to Wizards of the coast, for shame!

    i will put is simply thus. with every edition they have releases, WotC has improved upon the balance and simplicity. they have made this game much more accessible, and much easier to play. i almost never hear groans from players complaining about balance and starting food fights.

    but i also don't see people applauding their fellow gamers. i don't see brilliant used of powers or exceptional character builds anymore.

    with every system we get more balance, and loose more creativity. we gain security and loose our freedom. and we have long since passed any happy medium. RPGs are simply that, role playing games. they are about story, and adventure. if i wanted to go play a video game, where everything is limited and i have only seven options, i'd go play D&D online... which is exactly that....more info
  • Two steps forward; one step back

    - Balanced and simplified.
    - Mostly logical and intuitive.
    - Plenty of variety and options.
    - Faster paced than previous versions, which increases the fun factor.


    - UNREALISTIC HIT POINTS SYSTEM. I've always disliked the unrealistic way that D&D handles hit points. It never made sense that a high level, but 70 year old human wizard, can survive a building falling on him (or that a low level thief trying to guillotine the old Wizard's throat with a heavy battle axe while the Wizard sleeps). Meanwhile, a muscular fighter in his 20s would die instantly in these two scenarios just because he's 1st level. I've heard all the "logic" behind D&D hit points, but it still insults everyone's intelligence and demands a bit too much fantasy in such scenarios. It's a pity WotC didn't correct this design flaw to something like the Alternity system. In that system your hit points are based on your Constitution, and it barely goes up as you gain experience. The only way to protect yourself in Alternity was to get heavy armor, which absorbs damage. Still, I can live with the HP flaw.

    - UNREALISTIC HEALING SURGES. In 4e, your character can instantly boost his hit points by 25% of his maximum value. If his max HP is 100, then, when he has only 3 HP left, he can magically jump to 28 HP. Oh, and he can do this several times a day. C'mon. Yes, the previous system was flawed: you had to have many potions of healing and/or a generous Cleric in the party. However, the concept of a healing surge just feels too much like a video game. The idea that characters can heal massive injuries in seconds and climb out of death's door without any magic or divide intervention is a bit too much fantasy for me.
    One solution would be to do away with surges and just give characters far more hit points. However, this opens another can of worms.
    Therefore, my house-rule is a kludgey solution, but it helps add a touch of "fantasy realism" to this new healing surge feature that I simply find hard to swallow.
    Alt-Rule: At the start of his adventuring life, each hero obtains a divine amulet that effectively gives the same healing surges, but the power comes from their deity via the amulet. As long as they don't piss off their deity, the amulet continues to work. Each character comes up with a story of how they got their amulet. Wizards and Clerics can make their implements their "amulets." If they lose their amulet, they can get a new one from their house of worship, although it would be more interesting to have them go on a challenging quest to find a replacement amulet. It's not a great solution, but I can stomach it more than the standard 4e rule, which has us believe that the heroes have this innate ability to heal themselves quickly. In D&D, it seems easier to believe that such a healing ability would come from an artifact, not from an innate ability.

    - DEATH HAS LOST ITS STING. It's not only relatively easy to Raise Dead, but it's super easy to recover from it (just achieve 3 milestones and you're as good as new). In short, in 4e the fear of death is nearly gone. In old D&D, you would permanently lose one point of Constitution with each resurrection and there was a percentage chance that you wouldn't even be able to be resurrected. When you combine surges with easy resurrections, characters can now truly laugh at the face of death.

    - COMBAT IS STILL TOO COMPLEX AND TIME-CONSUMING. They've come a long way at simplifying combat and they deserve credit for that. However, I still dislike that a single battle can take up an hour of gaming to complete. Although you lose detail and realism as you speed up a combat system, I wouldn't mind paying that price. I'm into roleplaying, not rollplaying. If I want nonstop die rolling, I'd just play a wargame with loads of miniatures. In a gaming session, combat still occupies roughly 75% of the gaming time. Although that might be an improvement from 85%, it's still way too high. I wish the combat system were even more simple and faster.
    Possible simplifications: get rid of opportunity attacks and forbid the "targeting" or "cursing" of an enemy (which results in the annoying task of keeping track of them). Consider having AC cover all defenses (thereby eliminating the 3 other defense stats). Have the damage be automatically determined based on how much you exceed the "to hit" goal. All these ideas are radical, but there must be a way to speed up combat without totally giving up realism.

    - SKILL SYSTEM NEEDS WORK: Characters should be able to laser focus on a skill and become insanely good at it if they are willing to pay the price (i.e., not be that good at lots of other skills). Unfortunately, 4E forces players to spread out their training. You get 5 points when you initially train in something, but from then on, you can't purposely train more on one skill to improve it disproportionately to your other skills. You improve moderately everywhere. This is boring and adds little to game balance. If I give 50 skill points to a character and say, "Spend it as you will" (with a few basic limitations), then it would be just like how players assign points to their ability scores during character creation. The balance would still basically be there (i.e., every 10th level character has x many skill points to dole out), but players would enjoy greater skill specialization.


    The main gripe that 4e critics have is that they dislike the lack of flexibility of 4e. It's easy to criticize, so let's all put our game designer hat on for second.

    Let's rate a game on 1-100 scale, in terms of the variety of characters you can make. Let's say 3e gave you the capacity to make characters that were anywhere from a 50 to 95. In comparison, 4e lets you make characters anywhere from 75 to 85.

    Result? One has more flexibility; the other has more balance.

    (Let's not quibble about the numbers I picked, just follow the logic.)

    Therefore, you can't have it both ways: you can't have more options AND more balance. The more bells and whistles you put in, the less balance you'll get. The more balance you strive for, the fewer options you must give the players. There's no way around this, from a game design perspective. As you pull down one lever, the other goes up.

    Moreover, those who complain about 4e's "lack of options" are overreacting. First, you have plenty of Races to choose from (dozens if you include supplements). Second, you have plenty of classes to choose from (even more if you include supplements). You can specialize. You want an illusionist? Just pick powers/spells that emphasize illusions. Not enough? Invent some. Finally, you can always add color by roleplaying the character anyway you want.

    However, all these options may not be enough for some. That's when you can toss out the rulebook and start making new rules! You want variety? You hate all the balance in 4e? Then make all players roll their ability scores instead of having them choose a standard array of scores. With die rolling, you'll get some who are quite powerful, while others are quite weak.

    You hate how everyone has a power that causes 6d6 of damage? Give one or two characters a magic weapon that causes 12d6. Or better yet, one that causes 1-100 HP of damage. Now that's fun and random. You pull the trigger and it might not even kill an orc. Other times it takes down a dragon. How's that for spicing things up? If 4e is too boring and balanced for you, it's easy to spice it up.

    In short, 4e is just a framework. Its default settings are balanced. And it's about time too! D&D has always suffered from being unbalanced. Wizards were always painfully weak at low levels and painfully strong at high levels. Fighters always got more boring as they went up in levels. It's great that all the classes and races are finally are in sync.

    Finally, the old rules were too complex. Sure, if you've played D&D for as long as I have, they're don't seem complicated. However, try explaining them to a novice. You can do it, but 4e is much easier. (It's still not super easy though.)

    For those that value the roleplaying and teamwork aspects of D&D, you'll love 4e because its rules are streamlined and simplified from previous versions. That translates into:

    * Less time looking up and debating the rules and more time roleplaying.

    * Less time rolling dice in complicated combat and more time roleplaying.

    * More balanced characters, which leads to more equal contribution and teamwork.

    There's still a MYRIAD of options to choose from. Frankly, I'm still overwhelmed. In 4e you can play a Bugbear, Doppelganger, Drow, Githyanki, Githzerai,Gnoll, Goblin, Hobgoblin, Kobold, Minotaur, and even an Orc! And people say there is not enough variety or options? Please!

    If you want even more options, then bend the rules as much as you want, just like people did in all the other previous editions of D&D.

    I've been playing D&D since its the late 1970s. 4E is part of the evolution toward logic and balance. Yes, 3e was more flexible, but it was also less balanced than 4e.

    Since 4e still has plenty of flexibility, I'd rather not trade in game balance to get even more options. I value balance and simplicity for the sake of more roleplaying and fairness. Power gamers and min-maxers will probably disagree with me. However, for the rest of us who like roleplaying and balance, D&D has taken a big step in the right direction.

    Now if it could just further streamline combat (by forgoing some realism and detail), improve the skills system, and make death scary again, then this RPG would get 5 stars.

    P.S. That 5 star RPG is extinct. It's called Alternity....more info
  • DnD
    Great deal compared to what other places were selling the Box Set for.
    Play the game all the time with friends, and makes for some hilarious memories. Not so easy to get used to right away, but have uber characters and monsters. ...more info
  • Good Simplified Mechanic/Too Simplified Wording of the Rules
    The update to D&D in the 4th ed rules is a pretty major break from the typical rule set that a lot of people playing D&D from 2nd/3rd(3.5). It really strives to create a balance between players, while still having distinct roles for each character. One big thing I love about 4th edition are the skills - a HUGE improvement over 3rd edition. The list is way shorter because its actually condensed into proper categories (i.e. Athletics, which is 1 category of skills in 4th, covers climbing, swimming, sprinting, etc. from 3rd). Character building in the game is much easier and straightforward, and you feel like you are actually making headway/progress every time you level by gaining something new each time (powers, feats, skills, etc.), not just a few HP's and skill bonuses.

    The one thing I don't like about 4th is that in some cases, the rule book isn't comprehensive enough. I realize that D&D is a game where things are supposed to be a bit open ended, but there are certain core mechanics of the game that need to be explained fully. Some areas left some big holes - encounter powers were very poorly explained. For example, if you look at the level chart, at lvl 1, you get one encounter power, but you get your class features as well - as a cleric, you get an additional "list" of encounter powers just because of your class, like Turn Undead and Healing Word - but the chart looks like its telling you that you only get to use 1 encounter power during an encounter, so even though you have 4 encounter powers at lvl 1 as a cleric, it almost seems like the book is telling you that you can only use 1 encounter power per encounter - I had to look this up on the D&D forums online, since the index in the Handbook keep taking me to the same place to look up the same rule I was confused about, to find out that this wasn't the case - you get the cleric class encounter powers, plus the additional encounter power from another list of your choice - it was really confusing for a while. DC checking, especially for traps and things like that, are also really glossed over in the Player's Handbook, and even in the DMG, its not horribly specific either. They really could have spent a lot more time developing wording around some of the rules are a pretty big part of D&D IMO.

    Overall, I think I like the direction that the are trying to take D&D - I think the simpler the mechanics, the whole experience is better for the people playing, and it may even get people who weren't into D&D because it was too in depth and graph/chart crazy from 2nd/3rd. The rulebooks themselves could have spent some more time in certain areas developing some good wording for critical areas of the game, but I think with the advent of D&D insider, or at the very least the online forums, some of these areas will be worked out over a little bit of time....more info
  • wonderful updates
    The 4e rules are a huge breath of fresh air. Combat and character gen are streamlined, and (in my mind) unnecessary details are omitted. This game gets back to its roots allowing players (and DMs) to focus on playing the game, rather than becoming rules lawyers.

    For DMs it is 50 times easier to draw up an encounter, and for players combat is fast and furious. Love the set, love the games....more info
  • A Balanced, Fast Paced RPG
    As a longtime "hobbyist" gamer, I've dabbled in a number of game systems over the years. While I have found many RPGs that I love to play, my group often comes back to the original: Dungeons and Dragons.

    My first taste of D&D came with AD&D 2nd edition, a fine enough game, though rather complicated, especially when all the many, many volumes worth of extra content are considered. 3.x represented a major shift towards increased playability, and many years of good fun were had playing by my friends and I, though my bouts as a DM could be a bit painful. The system was still needlessly complex, much of the ruleset being an artifact of the previous editions.

    That brings us to 4th Edition. This game is seriously well thought out, and instead of clinging to the mechanics of the previous edition, the rules appear to have been built from scratch around the core idea of 3.x: the 20-sided die. I find that the rules are comprehensive, balanced, and best of all, work together. The mechanics no longer feel like a random collection of thoughts and ideas, as previous editions seemed to me. Classes and races are balanced with each other, the emphasis of character roles in a party is an excellent addition, and combat really works. The learning curve is not nearly as steep this time around, and the sheer functionality of the basic ruleset really makes the game faster to run and play.

    Compared to most other RPGs I've played, including versions of itself, this new Dungeons and Dragons is slick, easy to play and DM, and leaves plenty of room for actual role-playing. Easily one of the better table top gaming experiences on the market currently....more info
  • Complete lack of imagination. A power gamer's system.
    This system is terrible. Wizards of the Coast has made a system modeled after an MMO gaming experience, built for MMO gamers. The Players Handbook should be called the "How to Fight in 4th Edition Handbook." I would be very generous to say that there is two pages total that mention role playing at all.

    You start out the game as a hero. You can do GREAT things right off them bat. There is no room for emotional and mental growth in this system. Only your guns get bigger, because you are "told" by the books how awesome you are even when you are just starting out.

    The computer aspect of the game is horrid. It will fail, and will waste your time and money. It also restricts you to a poorly animated piece on a even more poorly put together virtual "game board" that takes away any shred of imagination you put into the action your party is going through.

    My three gaming groups, as well as myself, absolutely detest this product. And that is exactly what it is, a product, a way to make more money....more info
  • Dislikable, Puerile, Mean Spirited
    To be honest, I truly hoped this game would be enjoyable and interesting. The direction Dungeons and Dragons *should* go is only obvious to everyone who has known D&D in its very first edition. Everyone who has played a grand strategy game and a role-playing game knows how D&D could have been brought forward. This game did not go forward. This angelfish died and went to dust. The designers of this edition have shown no respect to the tradition of D&D and I see no need to show them any respect at all, ever.

    The best we can do in a civilized situation is to avoid purchase of this game. Burn it, if you have a copy. Get rid of it, forget the rules. Shun the designers. Hope they perish miserably.

    To break D&D is not to improve it. Dungeons and Dragons 4th edition not only breaks a hundred D&D conventions, it does not innovate worthwhile conventions to replace these. D&D 4th edition amputates half its heart, mysteriously losing four alignments out of nine. Lawful Good and Chaotic Evil remain inexplicably, dangling from threads of flesh. The writers must have been on drugs or were neurally impaired ghostwriters. Purportedly experts and professionals, they show no understanding of the terms used for alignment, no understanding of its role in the game.

    Furthermore, the game has lost appealing rules. Gone is the saving throw which provides an element of chance to survival. Gone are paladins that are Lawful Good. Gone are spells that must be learned by a character and memorized like esoteric treasures of knowledge. Idiocy is the word of Wizards presently.

    What? Wizards sought to emulate a computer game style with this edition? Perhaps they ignore the fact that the computer games emulated are stupid and belie intellectual approach. Perhaps they ignore the fact that thousands upon thousands of people found compulsion to learn from playing D&D -- mythology, sociology, architecture, art design, poetry, literature, language, history, and the military sciences. Why? D&D was so fun and ones campaign world can be made more beautiful and interesting by players who have greater knowledge and education.

    The end result of this game is a small set of supporters who are obviously not old D&D fans. The grand body of D&D fans often choose to ignore this edition, the foolish Fourth, in favor of earlier editions.

    Love is old, Love is new. Avoid this edition. Play earlier editions or a different game. Please. Do it for yourself. Do it for Gygax....more info
  • New Game, not new Edition
    There is much that I like about this new game. It is a very different system than "real" Dungeons and Dragons, but it is nice to have something new and different. I would rather see it called a different name than a higher number. With past new editions from the original to 3.5, I have only kept my old books for memorabilia. In actual play, the new always replaced the old. However, 4.0, I am keeping side-by-side with 3.5 as a different game for different groups on different days.

    While I agree that 4.0 makes level progression simpler, playing an effective fighter, for example, in 4.0 is much more complex. In 3.5 and earlier the fighter continued the attack by just rolling a d20, then rolling the damage. In 4.0, a fighter who simply rolls and attack has the same chance of hitting and does the same damage as does a wizard! In 4.0, a fighter is only better at fighting than a wizard if the fighter CHOOSES to, for example, launch a dizzying barrage of thrusts at the enemy (a "Covering Arrack") or decides to strike at one foe and allow his or her momentum to carry forward into a second strike against a second foe ("Passing Attack), or to weave the weapon in a graceful figure-eight, and then to lash out with a sudden attack ("Dance of Steal Attack") or to focus all strength into a blow designed to break through the enemy's armor and deal a painful bleeding wound ("Crack the Shell Attack") or any one of many other options. In 3.5, players would often call out such descriptions, but mostly for effect. Occasionally the DM might find one idea particularly worthy and grant some bonus. However, it was "assumed" that higher level fighters were doing these things all the time and appropriately for the situation by AUTOMATICALLY granting the fighter a higher base attack, and more attacks per round.

    Personally, I think a 4.0 fighter is much more fun to play than the old tank. I love calling out "Into the Fray Attack" or deciding that "Chains of Sorrow" is the better course. However, there is no place in 4.0 for the player who does not want to make many decisions during combat or who wants to keep his character sheet to a single page. In 4.0 games, I watch fighters and wizards alike franticly scanning their character pages during combat for the next best action and strategizing when to use this or that once-per-day super thing. This makes it much harder to mix players with different levels of game experience, different ages and different levels of player intelligence.

    Contrariwise, playing a wizard has been greatly simplified with many less options. Players like me really miss this. Also, playing the highly planned, dual-class balance with the splash of something is just plain eliminated form 4.0. Some folks "humph" and "good riddens" and call this powergamming. I find the deep planning, balancing and the many mistakes to be great fun. 4.0 is a clear move toward video games such as World of Warcraft. Automated systems, however, need to have a built-in structure that enforces balance. In a human moderated game, if a simple fighter is getting left behind by the powergamer, then the moderator can just let the fighter find a +8 greatsword that does 3d6 points of fire damage and grants the wielder spell resistance of 32: simple fighter and powergamer are now toe-to-toe.

    I like 4.0. I am going to have a lot of fun with it. I just hope the "real" Dungeons and Dragons is not killed by it.
    ...more info
  • excellent book set
    The condition of this book set was perfect, delivery as expected, and content exactly what we needed to play....more info
  • Why change something virtually perfect?
    I have played all of the versions of D&D. When Wizards of the Coast came out with the third edition it revolutioned pen and paper gaming. The new d20 system is close to perfection. What WOTC didn't think of, a good GM could. So why a 4th edition?? I bought the 4th edition with some hesitation. I was right to be hesitant. Yes, it is a new system. But it is as confusing as 3rd edition wasn't. I think WOTC put out this newest edition to line their pockets, not for the fans of the genre.

    I have trouble dealing with personal favorites being excluded from the Players Handbook. No more bards, barbarians, or sorcerors. Yes there are new things to write up but the complicated manner in which to write up a new charater is quite the pain.

    I DON'T recommend this series....more info
  • 4th edition is inferior to all previous editions
    Let me start out by saying that if I could have given 4th edition D&D zero stars I would have. They took a vibrant system with depth and turned it into a cookie cutter game that only appeals to teenagers (no offense.)
    I have been an avid gamer for many years now, not just D&D but White Wolf, LARPs and other gaming systems and yet D&D is still our weekly game. It provides a wonderful system for creating amazing and fun adventures and one of the best things about it is that it is so customizable.
    So with 4th edition they took that freedom and adaptability and threw it out and instead created a table top version of a MMORPG. Strangely enough I like playing the cleric (I know it's hard to believe) and in 4th edition what does the cleric do? He hits people. Just like every other class. Oh, sometimes other things happen in addition to him hitting people, but really that seems to be his main purpose. Especially since everyone can just heal themselves.
    What happened to defense and support? All of a sudden everything is about doing damage. The support and defensive abilities have been nerfed and every single character class is now about dishing out as much damage as possible. If that was what I wanted to do I would simply play a fighter or offensive mage in every campaign. Or I would play WOW.
    I realize that some people really like 4th edition, but my collection of 3rd edition books aren't going to be collecting dust any time soon....more info
  • D&D meets Windows VISTA
    I wast real happy with 4th edition and im glas i still i have my 3.5 books. my biggest complaint is that they took away my character, i play a half-orc barbarian when im not DMing, but neither that race or that class are currently in 4th edition. and i probably wont play any more 4th Edition games until WOTC corrects the "bugs" in the new system...more info
  • Everything I needed to play and more.
    This boxed set was a fantastic price, and received all three core books. I was given a tracking number and everything, and received it in 2 business days of ordering.

    I was at first leery of this new edition, but I figured I would give it a shot. I couldn't be happier. Opinions differ, sure. That may not help too much, but I think for many it turns out to be hit or miss. Do your research on it. It is a big investment....more info
  • A Great New Experiance
    I really enjoy reading these books even though I'm not done with them yet. I started DnD about a month ago with the 4th Edition Role Playing Game Starter Set and tried it out with a friend. I really enjoyed it and after getting the gist of the rules I bought this product. It makes the whole game seem a lot more fun and after these books I don't have to buy anymore books (although I probably will). The big downside is with MMORPGs today not a lot of kids want to play it and even though it says ages 12+ on the starter set box a lot of kids my age simply can't comprehend the game. I also admit that I get slightly bored reading all that information at once. One more dissapointment is that it says I'm required to have the Dungeon Master's screen and minatures which are a bit expensive for me after buying this product. But all in all you've gotta give it to WotC for making one great game....more info
  • no longer D&D
    This is simply no longer D&D. It's fine if you like board games... it's just not D&D, nor should it have been released as such. It is simply stats without the imagination. The monster manual disgusted me... no information about the monsters beyond the stats and how they attack. No history, no ecology, little to no behavior. The guys at Wizards of the Coast need to follow this with D&D Retro or something. The 4th edition just feels hollow. ...more info
  • Waste of money
    I wasnt expecting to be purchasing the d&d minis game. thats what this edition is, its garbage if youre expecting "d&d". if you arent looking for a table top miniatures wargame, save your money....more info
  • Fun for kids (I guess), but 4e is not D&D.
    The real Dungeons and Dragons is now under the creation of Paizo with 3.75 coming out in August 2009. I have played D&D for 30 years and 4e is simply not D&D. During D&D's evolution, each system had enough similarities so you knew you were still playing D&D when the new system came out. From D&D Basic, AD&D, AD&D 2nd Edition, D&D 3rd edition, to D&D v.3.5 you always felt like you were still playing D&D, but with 4th edition that has changed for me. Thank goodness for Paizo and keeping D&D alive....more info
  • Best of D20 Modern, worst for D&D
    They took aspects of Modern D20, tanks, blasters, etc and dragged this S**t boot in to D&D. Terms that have no point to be in the game. They boxed in the feats so the characters a truly limited. So any ideas to make og PC are now boxed in. My first character was a dwarf ranger, when I tried the game for the first time with my friends dragon born ranger. Both characters were the exact same!! We didn't even talk before hand.
    So I have to save, go PATHFINDER! This just stinks of squeezing more money from the fans. It's nice to know that White Wolf isn't the only guys who know how to F**k a winning system.
    ...more info
  • Hesitant but GREAT!!!
    I was so hesitant at first to truly embrace 4th Edition. It seemed so different from 3rd and 3.5, I was overwhelmed. But once I gathered my composure, I love it! Its truly a great system and the character creation is surprisingly easy to grasp even for beginners. Something I personally recommend is copying off all characters powers (laminating, if you'd like) that way the turns don't take as long. I laminated all the different powers for the players and it made the turns/game run so much smoother. And the players didn't feel so overwhelmed with the new powers all scrambling for the book and becoming frustrated cuz Joe is taking forever looking up what each power does cuz he doesn't have everything memorized. Save the group grief and aggravation, print cards for the powers or have each player write down there individual powers on index cards. Good Luck! And enjoy the new and improved system, We sure are!!!!!...more info