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Secrets of the Blind Palace
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/15/2019 17:48:48

Pros:

  • The mute bard and the mystery behind her doomed adventuring party serves as both a great plot hook and an interesting (and suitably terrifying) mystery to discover.
  • The mansion contains a perfect balance of exploration, combat, and role-playing opportunities.
  • Optional events and quests that can be completed to earn rewards, or in one case, avoid a nasty trap at the end.
  • Every combat encounter has notes for adjusting for stronger/weaker parties and levels.
  • Meaningful choice at the end with multiple layers and outcomes.

Cons:

  • Plain white paper layout.
  • No color on the maps.

Full review: https://roguewatson.com/2019/04/13/dms-guild-review-secrets-of-the-blind-palace/

Video review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wTq2mPtdrBE



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Secrets of the Blind Palace
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Books & Libraries
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/13/2019 12:44:53

Pros:

  • Extensive details on magical and mundane books to fill out D&D libraries and scholarly loot.
  • Large variety of book types, including mimics, spellbooks, skill guides, traps, and dimensional gateways.
  • Many of the books expertly combine interesting role-playing moments and areas with thematic benefits and detriments.

Cons:

  • The library section is comparatively weak, mostly listing famous libraries of the Forgotten Realms.

THE VERDICT: “BOOKS AND LIBRARIES” NOT ONLY PROVIDES A FANTASTIC RESOURCE TO FILL OUT A LIBRARY OR SHOP, BUT ALSO INTRODUCES SEVERAL FASCINATING NEW BOOK-BASED MAGICAL FEATURES AND IDEAS TO MAKE BOOKS EXCITING REWARDS AS WELL AS DANGEROUS THREATS.

Full Written Review: https://roguewatson.com/2019/04/03/dms-guild-review-books-libraries/

Video Review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OMF2ibnIKhU



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Books & Libraries
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Secrets of Valeguard Spire
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/13/2019 12:40:53

Pros:

  • The Campaign Archetype is a neat idea, and Valeguard powers are powerful and flavorful.
  • Full color maps of each level of Valeguard Spire.

Cons:

  • Not enough content to justify a separate release.

THE VERDICT: THE VALEGUARD CAMPAIGN ARCHETYPE IS A NEAT IDEA, BUT “SECRETS OF VALEGUARD SPIRE” FAILS TO INCLUDE MUCH OF ANYTHING OTHER THAN EXCITEMENT FOR THE NEXT CHRONICLES OF SORROW ADVENTURE.

Full written review: https://roguewatson.com/2019/03/30/dms-guild-review-secrets-of-valeguard-spire/

Video review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XUfsgrTGCFo



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Secrets of Valeguard Spire
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Adaptable NPCs
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/13/2019 12:38:40

Pros:

  • 70 (!) new humanoid NPC statblocks, from CR 1/8 to CR 15.
  • Fun ideas drawn from older D&D prestige classes and JRPGs.
  • 8 drop-in dungeon maps that utilize many of the new NPCs as party companions or foes.
  • Player handouts and tokens for all 70 NPCs, as well as DM and Player maps for each battle map

Cons:

  • Far more attention is given to NPC pictures than descriptions.
  • Character art plagued by tiresome boob armor and nearly naked women.
  • The dungeons are little more than hack and slash rampages.

THE VERDICT: THOUGH NOT A FAN OF THE ART EMPHASIS OR STYLE, “ADAPTABLE NPCS” FEATURES A HUGE AMOUNT OF FUN HUMANOID STATBLOCKS, AND THE DROP-IN DUNGEONS ARE A WELCOME BONUS.

Full Written Review: https://roguewatson.com/2019/03/27/dms-guild-review-adaptable-npcs/

Video Review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=osr0V34WJss



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Adaptable NPCs
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Creator Reply:
Hi Eric, Thank you so much for your in-depth review, and I agree on a lot of the points you've made! I appreciate your kind words and support of the supplement (and totally understand your views regarding the negatives). Initially when designing ANPCs, the thought was to include a named NPC sample example for each ANPC. However, this really began to expand the scope of the supplement. For the ANPC line of products (yes, spoiler alert - ANPCs II & ANPCs Eberron are underway), they will continue in this similar format. Those interested can follow me on twitter for a few teasers that will be coming in the near future (https://twitter.com/Grim_DM). That said, at around 7 minutes in the video you mention that including sample NPCs that approach the party with a quest hooks would be valuable. Is something that I plan to flesh out in detail for a new (non-ANPC) supplement - and it is already in production! Lastly, I understand your criticisms on the amount of art vs text. I personally love the art that I was able to secure for ANPCs and wanted to highlight it as much as possible. With art being so subjective, I recognize that it might not be to everyone's liking, but there are many supplements on the DMsGuild that include only a small amount of custom art, ending up as mostly text with stock art. I wanted to create something different - something to let art drive a DM's imagination as that's how I'm inspired when I DM. Luckily, we have a great marketplace on the DMsGuild that lets all of these different types of products thrive! Thanks again for your review! Cheers, Trevor
The Hag's Hexes
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/13/2019 12:35:36

Pros:

  • Over a dozen new monsters, two dozen new magic items, and several encounters and adventures.
  • An entire chapter devoted to the bargains and curses that hags employ.
  • The three one-shot adventures effectively showcase many of the new monsters and concepts featured in the supplement.
  • Candy Hag!

Cons:

  • Between the information already presented in both the official Monster Manual and Volo’s Guide to Monsters, we already had a lot of lore and information on hags.
  • None of the one-off encounter drops are particularly compelling.

THE VERDICT: IN CASE VOLO’S GUIDE TO MONSTERS WASN’T ENOUGH, “THE HAG’S HEXES” OFFERS EVEN MORE HAG VARIANTS AND LORE, AS WELL AS CURSED ITEMS, INSIDIOUS BARGAINS, AND DARK ADVENTURES.

Full written review: https://roguewatson.com/2019/03/13/dms-guild-review-the-hags-hexes/

Video Review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Mebo8ktDAQ



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Hag's Hexes
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The Molded: Humanoid Ooze Sourcebook
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/02/2019 17:03:43

Pros:

  • Detailed information on creating molded, including their creation, their society, and their traits.
  • New molded background (with multiple tables) and several interesting racial feats.
  • Included One-Shot Adventure that does a great job introducing the molded to any campaign.

Cons:

  • The molded have extreme ability score changes and borderline game-breaking abilities and resistances right at level 1.
  • No maps for the one-shot adventure.
  • Some confusion regarding NPC names and stat blocks in the adventure.

Full Review: https://roguewatson.com/2019/02/27/dms-guild-review-the-molded-humanoid-ooze-sourcebook/

Video Review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3PO9NVHOzqk



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Molded: Humanoid Ooze Sourcebook
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Halaster's Hoard
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/02/2019 17:02:21

Pros:

  • A ridiculous amount of magic items and monsters.
  • Inventive and interesting traps, ranging from deadly to hilarious.
  • Every item and monster is given background information and flavor text. Monsters in particular are given detailed notes about their general livelihood and place in Undermountain.
  • Halaster’s Vault is a nice mini-dungeon that fits perfectly in a side room within the deeper levels of Undermountain.

Cons:

  • Undermountain lacks a cohesive theme, which leads to this supplement mostly feeling like a generic list of dungeon-ready monsters and loot.
  • No attribution of which authors contributed which items, monsters, or designs.

Full Review: https://roguewatson.com/2019/02/23/dms-guild-review-halasters-hoard/

Video Review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H6MD1DuEzQw



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Halaster's Hoard
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Creator Reply:
Thanks for the kind words, Eric! If I might address one of your concerns: The book *is* a list of dungeon-ready monsters and loot, and that's absolutely deliberate. First, it's just like any other monster manual or magic-item book. Second, I think it's unfair to ding *our* book because Undermountain lacks a cohesive theme. Nevertheless, thanks again for your review! R P Davis, design lead
The Sunken Village of Little Corth
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/02/2019 17:00:29

Pros:

  • If all goes according to plan, the time-travel plot and mysteries create a neat story tying together events and choices from the past and present.
  • Very compelling plot hook and start to the adventure.

Cons:

  • Extremely linear, and requires the PCs to make certain choices for the story to play out correctly.
  • Plain font and huge walls of text make it a difficult read.
  • No usable battle maps.

Full Review: https://roguewatson.com/2019/02/13/dms-guild-review-the-sunken-village-of-little-corth/

Video Review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YY7twvEwE9E



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
The Sunken Village of Little Corth
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40 Magic Items - Treasures of the Underdark
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/02/2019 16:55:12

Pros:

  • All 40 magic items are richly themed to the Underdark and its denizens.
  • Nice variety of different kinds of magical items, from the usual swords, amulets, and potions to magical ropes, mushroom rations, and even a demonic tattoo.
  • A single page chapter full of tables to make your own Underdark-themed magical items.

Cons:

  • Many items feel like re-themed version of existing items in the DMG, rather than wholly original creations.

Full Review: https://roguewatson.com/2019/02/20/dms-guild-review-treasures-of-the-underdark/

Video Review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cX-aN9MpT4w



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
40 Magic Items - Treasures of the Underdark
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Myrddin's Guide to Faerie
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/02/2019 16:49:06

Pros:

  • Provides detailed information on fey NPCs and statblocks as well as new fey races, faerie-themed subclasses, and magic items of the feywild.
  • Faerie backgrounds and characters are drawn from past D&D editions as well as classic mythology stories, such as Irish myths, King Arthur, and William Shakespeare.
  • Legacy items that unlock new abilities as you level up are a fantastic concept that deserves its own DMs Guild supplement.

Cons:

  • The fey subclasses are the least interesting but take up the most amount of space; many subclasses already had solid fey-themed versions, like the Warlock and Paladin.

Full Review: https://roguewatson.com/2019/02/06/dms-guild-review-myrddins-guide-to-faerie/

Video Review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4C0jhuNCKYw



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Myrddin's Guide to Faerie
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City of Eyes - Second Edition
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/05/2019 15:27:44

Pros:

  • Over 100 pages of excellent world building and story telling in the gothic horror world of Elysium.
  • The city provides an open-world flavor set within a structured environment full of flavorful random encounters and detailed locations.
  • Detailed notes on everything a DM could want, from possible books in the library, to rumors about Elysium, and every single magical item up for bid at the auction house.
  • Custom trinket table, wild magic table, player race and backgrounds to be used specifically for the adventure.

Cons:

  • Borrows an awkward storytelling element of Curse of Strahd: leaving the location of important characters and magical items up to a random chance tarot reading.
  • The underwater mirror-town of Undercity serves as the climactic final act, but it’s disappointingly bare and limited in scope.
  • No separate player maps for dungeons.

THE VERDICT: FEATURING AN ABSOLUTELY STAGGERING AMOUNT OF CONTENT AND PHENOMENAL WORLD-BUILDING, “THE CITY OF EYES” WEAVES A MEMORABLE HIGH-LEVEL URBAN-HORROR ADVENTURE.

Full Review: https://roguewatson.com/2019/01/31/dms-guild-review-the-city-of-eyes/

Video Review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Oo927vqAiM



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
City of Eyes - Second Edition
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The Wizard of Zo
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/05/2019 15:24:30

Pros:

  • Fits perfectly within Tomb of Annihilation, while making obvious but fun references to The Wizard of Oz.
  • Transforming the wizard into an awakened Zorbo is both clever and hilarious.
  • Amazingly detailed cast of characters – with great portraits!
  • Separate DM and Player maps for the Tomb of Impersonation dungeon.

Cons:

  • Dungeon map could use a bit more detail, given the complex traps and branching systems.

THE VERDICT: “THE WIZARD OF ZO” HAS A NICE BLEND OF COMBAT, ROLE-PLAYING, AND EXPLORATION, AND DOES A GREAT JOB UTILIZING FUN REFERENCES WHILE STILL PROVIDING AN ORIGINAL, AND ENJOYABLE, D&D DUNGEON CRAWL.

Full Review: https://roguewatson.com/2019/01/23/dms-guild-review-the-wizard-of-zo/

Video Review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AWdUaIxxMAY



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Wizard of Zo
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Notice Board: 42 Quests for Waterdeep and Skullport
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/05/2019 15:22:53

Pros:

  • Over 40 interesting story seeds that range from simple fetch quests, to potentially spinning off into entirely new campaigns.
  • The Waterdeep quests are thematically tied to big city environments, while Skullport’s are appropriately concerned with pirates, thieves, and slavers.
  • Includes nine player handouts, each containing 4-5 quests in a fun notice board aesthetic, as well as blank templates and single notes to mix and match your own.

Cons:

  • No level ranges and few rewards are provided, instead relying on DMs to determine difficulty and reward scaling.

THE VERDICT: “NOTICE BOARD” INCLUDES A WELCOMING VARIETY OF MINI-ADVENTURES, STORY SEEDS, AND SIDE QUESTS FOR ANY URBAN-BASED CAMPAIGN.

Full Review: https://roguewatson.com/2019/01/12/dms-guild-review-notice-board-42-quests-for-waterdeep-and-skullport/

Video Review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ahvUy_FYEg



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Notice Board: 42 Quests for Waterdeep and Skullport
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The Return Of The Crown
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/12/2019 12:18:40

Pros:

  • Detailed background information on the history of Neverwinter, its monarch, and the associated factions.
  • Solid balance of role-playing, combat, and exploration set entirely within the city of Neverwinter.
  • Two vastly different climaxes and endings depending on which faction the PCs support.

Cons:

  • Numerous grammatical errors and poor sentence structure.
  • Requires Rogue skills to complete (Thieves Cant password, locked doors).
  • Black and white grid maps are functional, but no separate battle maps are provided.
  • Takes place entirely within a city, but no urban maps or artwork are provided.

THE VERDICT: "THE RETURN OF THE CROWN" IS HAMPERED BY POOR EDITING BUT DOES EFFECTIVELY SQUEEZE A POLITICALLY INTERESTING URBAN ADVENTURE BASED ON REAL FORGOTTEN REALMS LORE IN A LITTLE OVER A DOZEN PAGES.

Full Review: https://roguewatson.com/2019/01/09/dms-guild-review-the-return-of-the-crown/

Video Review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kuFPcdk0lU0



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
The Return Of The Crown
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Creator Reply:
Thank you for the review! Your feedback is really helpful for us! We are glad you liked the adventures concept. We certainly are going to fix the rest in our future adventures! :)
Undermountain: The Lost Chambers
Publisher: Dungeon Masters Guild
by Eric W. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/20/2018 18:04:45

Pros:

  • 11 mini-dungeon crawls (with full color grid maps!) that can be easily dropped into any larger dungeon or underground area.
  • Level scaling for every combat encounter.
  • The UWPS is a hilarious idea with lots of fun role-playing opportunities.
  • Off Two Minds, The Hunger of Abbathor, Abandoned Atelier, and the Cathedral of Bones are all stellar monster lairs.

Cons:

  • Lacks separate player maps.
  • Several themes and enemy types overlap, particularly the mind-controlling illithids and aboleths.
  • Few actual ties to Dungeon of the Mad Mage.
  • Requires Volo’s Guide to Monsters, Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes and Tomb of Annihilation to use every monster stat block, with no alternative suggestions.

THE VERDICT: WHILE IT MOSTLY LACKS MEANINGFUL TIES TO DUNGEON OF THE MAD MAGE, “UNDERMOUNTAIN: THE LOST CHAMBERS” DOES FEATURE SEVERAL SOLID MINI-MODULAR MONSTER LAIRS FOR ANY UNDERGROUND AREA.

Full review: https://roguewatson.com/2018/12/19/dms-guild-review-undermountain-the-lost-chambers/

Video review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5w2Wp0uECLs



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Undermountain: The Lost Chambers
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