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4.0 out of 5 stars Worth a look.,
This review is from: Dungeons & Dragons Player's Handbook: Core Rulebook I (Hardcover)Simply stated, if you're reading this, you've probably sunk enough money into role-playing games to purchase a used car. If this is the case, buy this book. If this is not the case, you probably can save a few bucks by buying older books from EBay, just to see if you enjoy RPGs. This having been said, I will direct the rest of this review toward gamers who already own/play D&D.
First, the basics:
Did they change a lot of stuff? Yes. A lot of basic mechanics have changed, from ability scores to classes. Some of this is good(No more confusing fractional strength scores) and some bad(unbalanced racial bonus/penalties:Half-Orc +2 Str, -2 Int, -2 Cha). One of the biggest changes is the dropping of most support for game worlds outside of Greyhawk, with a promise to get around to some Forgotten Realms sometime next year.
Is it really better? Thus far, I've only read the book, and not played a game based on it. As with any gaming system, there are things I like and dislike. Before I actually play a game based on these rules, I will probably sit down with the intended party and discuss all of the changes with them. If they hate something, I won't use it. I know I'm dodging the question a bit here, but the bottom line is, I won't really know until I've experienced the game played.
So how do I justify a rating of four? A lot is based upon my optimism going forward in the next year. As the new books are released, I am hoping that all will be well and good in the world of D&D.
-The book physically is quite attractive. The artwork is beautiful and the cover very nice.
-Some clunky mechanics have been removed from the game.
-Better system for handling skills(finally!).
-Lots of cool freebees are being released via the web. If this keeps up, you may be able to get a lot of material for next to nothing. So far this includes: maps, NPCs, adventures, monsters, and more.
-Characters are beefed up a little too much. This is probably done to make up for bad role-playing, a poor storyline, or a bad dm.(Think of a movie: The weaker the story=the more explosions needed to keep audience interested.)
-Although you can consider many rules optional, the inclusion of some and not others can drastically throw off game balance.
One thing that I see as both good and bad is WotC's plan to reach out to the gaming community more. A big project, called "Living Greyhawk" will have players gaming in a contantly evolving world with some interaction between other groups. DMs will be able to submit small adventures that can be played by the gaming community as well as participate in the overall campaign. This sounds good on the surface, but I can see a few problems occurring.
Obviously, the rules must be adhered to, exactly. Otherwise, one group that excludes barbarians from their game runs into another group that doesn't.
Also, what happens when a huge event takes place within a groups game that throws off the grand scheme of things. What do you mean there's a festival if Moonglow? We burned that town to the ground last week!
I know this review is supposed to be about the book and not about all of 3rd edition. Sorry, but the two are linked at the hip. This book, and the next few, are the cornerstones to the next several years of Dungeons and Dragons.
It's not too expensive, so pick it up. If you don't like it, don't buy any more 3rd edition books and keep playing as you always have. Even if you hate it, I think you'll probably find a few neat ideas to incorporate into your campaign.
5.0 out of 5 stars Players Handbook,
This review is from: Dungeons & Dragons Player's Handbook: Core Rulebook I (Hardcover)Though it came a few days later than expected, the book is in great condition exactly as I wanted it.
5.0 out of 5 stars 3.0 is STILL better than 3.5,
By A Customer
This review is from: Dungeons & Dragons Player's Handbook: Core Rulebook I (Hardcover)I wouldn't listen to anyone that claims the "new and improved" 3.5 is any bit "new and improved".
3.0 is truly the right blend of D&D tradition and sound game mechanics. 3.5 is a pile of garbage house-rules for actual D&D crafted by a new batch of "limited" designer minds.
This book is D&D 3rd edition, no other.
1.0 out of 5 stars 3.5 edition has arived,
By A Customer
This review is from: Dungeons & Dragons Player's Handbook: Core Rulebook I (Hardcover)Woc has done it again. They have released another editon, and it is supearior. Edition 3.5 is very like third (Hence the .5), but realy cleans up the classes and makes things more balanced. This book is good, but the new Players Handbook 3.5 Edition just blows it out of the water. They tweaked all that needed tweeking, and left the good stuff there. Toss your third Edition and go buy 3.5!
5.0 out of 5 stars The book that starts and runs the game,
This review is from: Dungeons & Dragons Player's Handbook: Core Rulebook I (Hardcover)This book for most people is the only book you will ever need for Dungeons & Dragons. While there are many more accesories expanding the game, This is the ancor, and the only book needed for a player. It includes all of the Races, Classes, Spells, Feats, and Items you need to make and run a Charactor.
The best art of this book is that not only does it list all the things you need to know, it explains in full detail how all things are related to each other. If read like a book, (front to back not just paging for specifics) It spells out what you need, need to do, and how to. You start with the abilities, go into races, classes, and then skills, and items. Finsihing with spells, and feats.
Over all, i would rae this 5, because of what it offers, and its necesity to the game it serves. i recomend you buy it, even if you dont buy it here.
3.0 out of 5 stars A lot of good stuff, some (significant) holes,
This review is from: Dungeons & Dragons Player's Handbook: Core Rulebook I (Hardcover)D&D 3E is a massive improvement over previous editions in a number of ways ... D&D has finally embraced skills, a big plus; a lot of the arbitrary and annoying restrictions of previous editions have been eliminated; the whole thing has been streamlined greatly at a fundamental level (there is still a lot of rules grit - attacks of opportunity anyone? - but this has always been the case, and by using a much cleaner and less arbitrary basic system, the game is now more intuitive).
The problem with D&D 3e is that it requires a *lot* of work on the part of the gamemaster. This is not a ready-to-play game by any stretch, unlike WotC's Star Wars d20, say. You have to go to some lengths to create a campaign setting, and realistically you're going to have to throw some of those arbitrary restriction back in. Why? Because D&D 3e has some significant imbalances, and you're likely to be playing with one player who is going to be looking for rules loopholes to create an unbalanced character. A big culprit here is the multi-classing combined with the fact that many classes are front-loaded with a lot of cool abilities at first level, so it's not unusual to find characters with 3 or 4 classes so they can cherry-pick low-level abilities from each. This is not only aestetically displeasing and unbalancing, but makes it impossible to keep a coherent character vision. The prestige classes are a cool and interesting feature, but are for the most part egregiously broken and, in the words of a fellow-player, "pure munchkinism".
Another complaint of mine about the system is that characters are simply too hard to make distinctive; the only real tool you have is this problematic multi-classing, and that is at best a blunt instrument. The Feats are a very cool concept, but not well-balanced with respect to each other so many will simply never show up (and characters who are not Fighters and Wizards acquire them far too slowly to be of much use in distinguishing characters). Characters of some classes (notably Paladins, Monks, Druids, and Barbarians) are going to be essentially indistuinguishable from each other - an 8th level Monk is pretty much an 8th level Monk, and the variance will be quite small. I find the list of which skills can be bought by which classes unduly restrictive and occasionally bordering on the nonsensical. The restrictiveness of the class sytem, and the stereotyped nature of the classes and lack of advancement choices, is to my mind the most significant failing of D&D 3e. Some classes are now almost acceptably flexible: the Fighter has a huge number of choices with all their bonus feats, even if the basic class concept of a heavily armed and armored fighting machine can't be fundamentally altered; Wizards of course have a massive spell list, and can specialise in various schools; Clerics now can pick from a dozen or so dieties, all of which serve to flavor the class; and Rogues have immense numbers of skill points and a wide variety of skills. But if you want somthing a little more specific or flavorful, you're stuck with cookie-cutter classes.
Anyway, from a pure systems standpoint, the d20 system is fundamentally a good one, but from a pure gaming perspective it has been done better by other games. I actually like Wizard's Star Wars game better, as it addresses many of the problems I've mentioned here; but that doesn't help you much if you hanker for heroic fantasy. D&D 3e is cool, better than previous editions (often significantly), and is popular because it is so open-ended. It has rules for everthing, and a bazillion skills, feats, spells, monsters, magic items, etc. - everybody is going to find a cool idea in here somewhere that they're ready to run with. All those options don't always work together, though, and the choices are sometimes odd, so be aware that the gamemaster is going to have to do some work for D&D 3e to be truly robust.
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent new edition!,
This review is from: Dungeons & Dragons Player's Handbook: Core Rulebook I (Hardcover)I was a diehard 1st and 2nd edition fan for many years and when 3rd edition came out, my first inclination was to totally ignore it. I finally overcame my prejudice and looked over the 3rd edition players handbook... I was happily surprised. This version of the game is much more detailed, a lot of thought went in to it's design. Some of the highlights include, an actual skills system that works (I never cared too much for the non-weapon proficiencies of 1st and 2nd edition), spell descriptions are very well thought out (the knock spell is an example of this) the artwork is very nice (late 2nd edition artwork was the worst), the combat system is simplified... and you can multiclass your character to your hearts desire. These are just some of great things about 3rd edition. I highly recommend you check it out!
4.0 out of 5 stars Simplified, Still Sensational,
This review is from: Dungeons & Dragons Player's Handbook: Core Rulebook I (Hardcover)I was skeptical about Third Edition (3E) rules, and I finally got around to using them. I'm a Dungeon Master, so I'm the guy who needs to be really up on the rules. All of my players wanted to play 3E, so I didn't want to be...unemployed.
I thought that 3e was just a beautified version of 2E. Better art, prettier covers, etc. I was wrong. The rules are surprisingly solid, and are much more beginner friendly. They have much more balanced classes, and more detailed races and sub-race options. The combat has been greatly improved, and is much more clean-cut. No more THACO, it has been simplified to "to hit" or "attack roll." Which, I'm sorry to say, is much easier on me and the players.
3E isn't flawless though. Some things are so simplified that they can just seem childish though. Spells are cast with pretty much a flick of the fingers, which is total stupidity. The Attack of Oppurtunity makes it a little more difficult. Still, spellcasting is a difficult task, therefore it should have a more difficult process. Overall 3E is a great change of pace, and is much cleaner cut than 2E. The DM is able to run the game a lot smoother. But if you are a harcore DnD player who neglects to go to 3E because it is too simple, I support you too.
1.0 out of 5 stars Don't waste your money on this,
By A Customer
This review is from: Dungeons & Dragons Player's Handbook: Core Rulebook I (Hardcover)3rd Edition is complete garbage. Don't waste your money on it.
2nd Edition FOREVER!!
5.0 out of 5 stars not gerat but its d&d,
This review is from: Dungeons & Dragons Player's Handbook: Core Rulebook I (Hardcover)D&D is a gerat game but the 2ND edition is better i think havent really played 3erd edition much but what the heck its d&d is gerat any wa u look at it
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Dungeons & Dragons Player's Handbook: Core Rulebook I by Jonathan Tweet (Hardcover - Aug 1 2000)
Used & New from: CDN$ 13.46