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Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e) $0.00
Average Rating:4.5 / 5
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Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e)
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Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Itai G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/22/2019 16:16:15

The cover art is really good; it's too short; I don't see why we need another race that is just good for fighters (goliath); but I'm pleased they expended the spell lists.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by William B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/20/2019 17:13:47

I bought this in print. $10 may seem steep, but I don't see how they can get a POD sent out to a purchaser and make any money for less. Worth if for those who want to have a complete print collection.

I like the options in this book, and they're a good fit for PotA.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Alessandro H. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/23/2018 14:22:56

I bought this thing for ten dollars. Then, it was hsipped to me, and I find some 20 page book. This should only be four or five dollars. DO NOT BUY THIS IN PRINT.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Lewis P. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/21/2017 04:16:54

I found this a nice addition. I could have probably done the work for the spells (about 40) and the races (four of them) but it's always nice not to have to and get something that's play tested and reasonably balanced.

I suspect a lot of this, if not all of it, is in the hardback rule book, but this is nice if you don't want the whole thing.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Tim M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/21/2017 14:57:01

Overall an excellent resource for 5e D&D, adding four new PC playable races with good background information and more than 40 new spells - all as official supplements to the adventure, Princes of the Apocalypse.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Lemuel E. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/10/2017 12:28:09
This was a quality product, much like the other 5e material that own and would highly recommend it. It was nice to be able to get the player specific stuff without buying and entire campaign book.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by A customer [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/25/2016 12:09:37

A neuronphaser.com review.

Content (4/5)

The Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (A.K.A. EEPC) is a short book with only two chapters: one covering 4 new races for players to choose from for their characters, and the second covering 43 new spells that get spread among the Bard, Druid, Ranger, Sorcerer, Warlock and Wizard spell lists.

Races The following races appear in the Elemental Evil Player’s Companion: Aarakocra, Deep Gnome (A.K.A. Svirneblin), Genasi, and Goliath.

Aarakocra The aarakocra are an interesting race, as they have the ability to fly right off the bat, something most PCs don’t get until they pick up a 3rd level spell like fly (which would be at 5th level for a wizard) or luck upon multiple magic items that grant flying to the entire party, such as a carpet of flying (a very rare item), a few spell scrolls of fly (an uncommon item for 3rd level spells), or several potions of flying (also very rare). Because of this ability, they’ve already been declared illegal for Adventurer’s League play. What’s worse is that the descriptive text makes it hard to frame aarakocra as typical adventurers: they hate dungeons, are not motivated by treasure (though they like “shiny things” regardless of value), and they don’t understand the concept of ownership (which may not help with deciding on what’s party loot and what’s not).

Aside from those issues, the aarokocra are a pretty cool race, and it’s nice to see something so outside-the-box included early in 5th Edition’s life. These guys are slow walkers (25 feet), but fast flyers (50 feet)…if they don’t wear medium or heavy armor. Their talons form a natural attack that deals 1d4 slashing damage, which when combined with the armor restriction suggest they might be awesome Monks, Rogues, or highly mobile Rangers.

There’s a sidebar covering the geographic origins of the aarakocra in the Forgotten Realms setting, which is a great tool for helping players come up with their backstory. A quick search on the Forgotten Realms Wiki and you’ve got a dozen hooks to build an aarakocra character, which is a nice touch, especially for such an abnormal player race. Additionally, there’s a quick blurb on what Backgrounds from the Player’s Handbook are particularly well-suited to these birdmen.

Deep Gnome (Svirfneblin) Although the deep gnomes also appear in the Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide, it’s clearly not a direct copy-paste job, though the end result is (mechanically) the same; reprinted here among the deep gnome traits are the standard gnome traits, as well. The Elemental Evil Player’s Companion version does feature more text, fleshing out some deep gnomish psychology and attitudes, but not much, and certainly not in a specifically Realmsian way. No sidebars address their favored backgrounds or any Faerun-specific origins for the svirfneblin.

The Svirfneblin Magic feat is the first feat printed outside of the PHB (not counting some Unearthed Arcana articles, maybe) and is race-specific, granting the ability to cast nondetection at will, plus each of blindness/deafness, blur, and disguise self once before regenerating the castings after a long rest.

Genasi Genasi are the only race that comes with a full listing of racial traits plus subraces, in this case mirroring the major elements: air, earth, fire, and water. Fire and water genasi get 1-2 more traits to play with than air and earth, but power levels don’t really seem affected by this, given what those traits are: fire genasi get fire resistance and darkvision, water genasi get the amphibious trait and a swim speed of 30 feet. Each race also gets an innate magical ability as well:

  • Air genasi can cast levitate once per long rest (a 2nd-level spell).
  • Earth genasi can pass without trace once per long rest (a 2nd-level spell).
  • Fire genasi gain produce flame (with no frequency listed), and then at 3rd level also gain burning hands as a 1st level caster, once per long rest.
  • Water genasi can shape water (no frequency listed), and then at 3rd level can cast create/destroy water as a 2nd level caster, once per long rest.

Genasi also get a sidebar explaining their place in the world of Dark Sun’s Athas, which essentially amounts to them being seen as beings whose birth and presence brings with it great omens and fortunes. Another sidebar on Backgrounds rounds out the genasi as it did the aarakocra, but there’s nothing suggesting Forgotten Realms-specific lore here.

Goliath The goliath first showed up (to my knowledge) back in the latter days of 3.5 Edition D&D (2004’s Races of Stone), in a time when it felt like every book had to have oodles of New Mechanical Stuff for Players™! I’m not against that sort of thing, but the sheer volume of all that new crunch caused me to miss what was so special about goliaths, and when they showed up early in 4th Edition’s life in Player’s Handbook 2, I was surprised to see such a “second-rate” race show up so quickly. Now we have them in 5th Edition, and quite honestly, I was wrong about them: goliaths are pretty cool.

Framed as hardy, strong mountain men with a connection to elemental earth, goliaths could end up being slightly reckless PCs, but that’s pretty much par for the course in my D&D campaigns, so I’d say these guys are a welcome addition to the roster. Their truly special stats include a once per rest — short or long — damage reduction roll, which is a nice way of beefing them up without necessarily breaking the game’s internal logic around temporary or maximum hit points or healing surge-style mechanics that you might see with the fighter (Second Wind, for instance).

Unfortunately, unlike the aarakocra and the genasi, there’s literally no setting lore on the goliaths: no indication of Backgrounds that work best for them, or where they might have settlements of any kind (even nomadic) within the boundaries of the Forgotten Realms. This unfortunately reinforces their “second-rate” race status, making them look like a random add-on in this product just because they have a (very loose) connection to the element of earth. That’s not exactly award-winning writing and editing right there. Still, they are a fun race, but it’d be even more interesting if they got tied to Uthgardt tribes or other wilderness folk that crop up in Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide.

Spells The 43 new spells covered in this book are (and their level):

Abi-Dalzim’s Horrid Wilting (8), Absorb Elements (1), Aganazzar’s Scorcher (2), Beast Bond (1), Bones of the Earth (6), Catapult (1), Create Bonfire (cantrip), Control Flames (cantrip), Control Winds (5), Dust Devil (2), Earthbind (2), Earth Tremor (1), Elemental Bane (4), Erupting Earth (3), Flame Arrows (3), Frost Bite (cantrip), Gust (cantrip), Ice Knife (1), Immolation (5), Investiture of Flame (6), Investiture of Ice (6), Investiture of Stone (6), Investiture of Wind (6), Malestrom (5), Magic Stone (cantrip), Maximilian’s Earthen Grasp (2), Melf’s Minute Meteors (3), Mold Earth (cantrip), Primordial Ward (6), Pyrotechnics (2), Shape Water (cantrip), Skywrite (2), Snilloc’s Snowball Swarm (2), Storm Sphere (4), Thunderclap (cantrip), Tidal Wave (3), Transmute Rock (5), Vitriolic Sphere (4), Wall of Sand (3), Wall of Water (3), Warding Wind (2), Watery Sphere (4), Whirlwind (7)

And now, for my random thoughts on them! I won’t cover every spell, just the ones that had weird balance issues, seemed especially awesome, or otherwise seemed to require some sort of commentary.

Abi-Dalzim’s Horrid Wilting: Creates an instantaneous 10d8 necrotic damage to a 30-foot cube. Roughly similar to incendiary cloud (which is a persistent area of 10d8 fire, which happens to be the most common damage resistance/immunity) but it is clearly weaker than sunburst (12d8 radiant plus blinded to a 60-foot area). As a sidenote, Abi-Dalzim doesn’t crop up anywhere I could find as a character, but there's a post by dongul at Canonfire! about his background and there are some 3.5 edition stats you can find with a quick web search.

Aganazzar’s Scorcher: Basically burning hands, but a die size better and it affects a line instead of a cone.

Beast Bond: Kinda combines speak with animals and animal friendship, but better. It does require animals to be friendly or charmed before you cast it, however.

Earth Tremor: 1d6 bludgeoning plus knock prone everyone within 10 feet (Dex save negates). This is a great battlefield control spell at level 1!

Elemental Bane: Negates resistance, but not immunity, which is an interesting conundrum for internal logic, but also begs for a thorough accounting of resistance vs. immunity for elemental damage types (acid, cold, fire, lightning, and thunder).

Flame Arrows: Compares well to lightning arrow (a 3rd level Ranger spell), and is a hair better than cordon of arrows.

Frostbite: When comparing with ray of frost, this spell shows us that “disadvantage on next attack” is much weightier than “speed is minus 10 feet.” Which is probably not surprising.

Immolation: Seems a bit weak for a level 5 spell as it deals less damage than fireball, only hits one target, and features a save ends on the continuous burning effect. Although, it does shed light out to 60 feet, so I guess that’s alright…?

Investiture spells (Flame, Ice, Stone Wind): These are all great, multipurpose spells providing damage immunities and resistances, special movement, and special attacks that makes it seem like your taking on a purely elemental form. Very cool.

Skywrite: This is the best version of the Warning Beacons of Gondor I’ve yet seen in spell form. A bit weak in the sense that it’s like a large-scale but one-off magic mouth or message spell, but still a great utility spell that could change how settlements communicate with one another, perhaps along the lines of magical semaphore. It’d be interesting to add this to some of the NPC spellcasters that represent village shamans and whatnot among regions like Ten Towns or in even tighter-knit communities.

Storm Sphere: This is an interesting take on a wizard/sorcerer version of call lightning, mixing constant bludgeoning, buffeting winds with a laser-like lightning bolt every round.

Thunderclap: Doesn’t seem like much, but thunderclap is actually a perfect alarm system for a party that is surprise attacked during a rest, as it damages anyone ganging up on the mage and blasts a call for help over 100 feet.

Watery Sphere: The manner in which a watery sphere moves with restrained creatures inside of it reminds me of the movie Bubble Boy (2001) with Jake Gyllenhaal.

Overall, that’s a pretty cool selection of spells, and the balance issues don’t swing way out of whack, so I’d say it’s a pretty successful bundle of new spells and/or updates to the 5th edition rules. There’s a goodly number that are combat oriented, which is to be expected, but the utility spells that show up are exciting and useful. While I’ve got some complaints with how spells are presented, I won’t repeat them here nor take off any points for that; if you don’t like 5th edition’s spells or the layout of spell stat blocks, this book isn’t going to change your mind, and it’s not really meant to.

What I will complain about is that the Spell Lists do their job…weirdly. The Player’s Handbook organizes the Spell Lists by class and then level within that. Makes sense, simple, and the only problem there is that there’s no page reference, though the spells are in alphabetical order, so I can shrug that off. The EEPC‘s Spell Lists do the same (again with no page reference), but randomly added the spell’s school as a parenthetical notation, like this: “Thunderclap (evocation).” Did we need this? Was there a big movement to add that in lieu of page references, or perhaps a more comprehensive table?

Dunno. Not a big deal, but it’s inexplicable to me.

Form (5/5)

I picked up the Softcover Color Book (Standard) version of the EEPC along with the PDF, and I’m quite pleased with it. It’s pretty pedestrian in terms of binding -- it won't lay flat without some stuff weight it down -- but the cover’s thick, the pages are thick, and the artwork and text didn’t bleed or darken in the process of printing it, so it gets my thumbs up.

The artwork and layout continues the tradition of Wizards of the Coast’s 5th Edition releases, which I’m very happy with. I’ll admit it’s maybe not for everyone — some people nitpick the images, some people don’t like that the text is left-aligned but not justified, leading to wavy right-hand margins — but none of that bothers me. It’s obvious that they put time and care into the packaging of these products, and for a free PDF and $8 book (I think it was like $12 total with shipping?), I feel like I’m getting both great content and a high-quality visual appeal for my buck. Can’t argue with that!

Critical Droll The critic in me really wants to complain about what this product could have been, or could have added. Frankly, I’d pay a good deal more money for an Elementalist arcane tradition for Wizards and a bit more in terms of Backgrounds or setting info to get players into the Elemental Evil storyline (see the Resources section, below). But the fact is that they pushed this thing out for free (in PDF form) with content that can be used across D&D’s campaign settings, it’s well-balanced, and doesn’t tie itself so strictly to the Elemental Evil story that it ends up being useless content for anyone avoiding published adventure modules. It’s strength is that it’s a much more universal release, and yet it’s focused solely on giving players solid options that aren’t broken or poorly designed, and all of it in a package that’s nice to look at.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Gaetan V. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/28/2016 00:51:47

It's the extra PC content that players have been looking for.

You get four races. Note that only one of these was actually included in the Elemental Evil book.

  • Aarakocra
  • Deep Gnome (Svirfneblin)
  • Genasi
  • Goliath

You also get a dozen pages of spells, 43 in total.

And it's all free! That stated, the $8 print version is also completely worth it.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Adam U. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/22/2016 13:57:40

DEF worth the printed version. Love Goliath and would love more softcover books.

Maybe creating a section in the DM's Guild for items that you can get printed and sent to customers will help make more sales. Just like in 4th ED when WoC made the Dragonborn & Tiefling Race book.

Four new races and also more spells. Great pick up for any game that would like more diverse races.

I love having the actual softcover, really turns heads at the table. Thank you



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Tom I. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/01/2016 12:47:55

I'm fairly new to the game, but this book has been an interesting read. It doesn't waste too much time before getting into the rules, and everything is set out as in the Player's Companion, making information easy to find. I could see the new races easily being implemented into a normal game (or even the basic version you can get off the Wizards website for free) - I'd like to roll a Deep Gnome Wizard next time I start an adventure. It's also useful to be able to buy, for a reasonable price, a physical copy, which is something I'm considering doing, to save faffing around with paper, but it's just as easy to use the PDF on a phone or tablet. Although I haven't played with the rules yet, it looks very promising, especially given that it is free!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by John L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/18/2015 16:06:55

I definitely feel Impressed by a lot of what 5e has offered, and this small, but content packed supplement is great example of the quality of 5e. A simple add-on of interesting races and spells, that can be used in any campaign, to me, is a simple by. And the duel purpose of assisting campaigns in this specific setting is wonderful. The races, atleast, are pretty unusual. And many Dms may feel immediately afraid of balancing issues if they were to add them in their campaign, but I honestly see these races as an example of what Wizards of the Coast was able to do in the core rulebooks with both the races and classes. Add awesome abilities and really cool sounding powers, that are wonderfully balanced with the rest of the game. I'd say this may be only one of the first of a great line of supplements for Dungeons amd Dragons 5th Edition.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by david w. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/05/2015 15:58:58

I think that this could be a very fun addition to the d&d game platform. I originally selected this book looking for 4e titles. I have not yet had the chance to play 5e, but I do plan to try it and incorporate it with 4e. what i have glanced at so far is very good material. I am just waiting for the day that wizards of the coast change the sloppy d20 combat system to a an opposed attack/defend roll,real-time attack system like rifts does. the game system is too chancy, either the monsters are too easy to hit or too tough. but overall, i put 31/2 stars on it because the game is interesting and fun,if a bit corny and unfair/ sloppy.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Adam G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/02/2015 12:59:01

Fair warning. This is a first glance review, I have not yet played with what's been introduced in this supplement. The additional races added for the most part look really interesting. I was looking forward to the Genasi and was a little dissapointed with how their rules look. The updated spell list is an exceptionally interesting read, a good range of spells of all levels for all the major magic users that look like they will enhance the RP feel of your character. Was suprised to not see an expansion to the monks list considering the elemental focus of the list (it may be there I have been known to be that blind before) As a fairly new DnD player I can't wait to experiment with what's been given to us to play with here



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by John G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/25/2015 13:41:41

Great scan and no issues with delivery. Printed out my copy and had no problems or issues at all. Very satisfied with my purchase, if a free purchase was this good, I can't wait to buy more PDFs.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Hae B. J. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/15/2015 22:55:21

No surprise, no disappointment. Just ordinary, expected quality of print binded by stapler. It took 2 weeks to get the print delieverd to Republic of Korea.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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