In the spirit of full disclosure, I was given a copy of this supplement for a full and honest review.
I feel like this supplement is somewhat dishonest. The cover spells out, Treasure Finds: Save Hours of with this Collection of Organised Loot! Yes, it's going to save me a lot of time when it comes to sorting out treasure on fly or prepping dungeons and hauls, but, and I can't deny that this is a big but: This supplement is not going to save me time because this isn't an endless list of dry tables and treasures, but there are an array of extensive tables of goodies. There's something dangerous and more valuable than all the platinum, magic items and overpriced bodyguards in here combined in this supplement that is going to have me spending hours and hours coming back again and again...Ideas and inspiration!
I already have so many ideas spinning around my head right now that it's hard to think! This little beauty has all the tables and easy prepping good times, but there's some insidious creativity and thought that's gone into this, which even as I write this I'm plotting dungeons, placing booty under dragons, hiring minions for my guards and composing quests...but let's focus and go through this from the top.
This is 56 pages of goodness for $5.95 with writing by Andrew Cawood (@cawoodpublish), an awesome, evocative cover by Travis Hanson (@TravsTheBean) that makes me want a whole comic based around it and the characters in these pages (pretty please!) and, professional design and layout by Gordon McAlpin (GMcAlpin), making stock art work incredibly effectively and giving the whole thing a polished shine like freshly minted platinum.
How to Use This Handbook is an introduction explaining the single and horde categories that treasure is divided into in D&D5e, as well as noting the treasure chest and container tables, as well as the NPC Guardians, 5th and 10th level, divided by class, and the extra tables of even more items in the back.
The first tables themselves are divided into individual treasure and individual magic items with randomised D100 for 50 entries each for the span of challenge ratings (CR), 0-4, 5-10, 11-16 and 17+. There is a nice variance of a relative pittance to a healthy haul in each category and challenge rating, which can be rolled in the moment, while preparing or used as a guide and/ or chosen from.
This takes the baseline of suggested treasure tables in the Dungeon Master's Guide (DMG) that provides only five options, one for each denomination of coin, and a number of set dice with the average (ie. Individual Treasure CR 0-4 [D100] 01-30 5d6 (17)) , and gives you ten times the results all rolled for you in advance. The same is applied to the magic item tables, which are only supplied in horde tables in the DMG with D100 referring you to further tables to roll X amount of times on to get your results. Here there are magic item tables for the relative CR laid out in D100 format with 50 magic items with little besides various potions of healing appearing more than once on the same table.
The approach of laying things out in this manner, a single D100 role with 50 options, is where the hours of time will be saved in prepping and in the moment, allowing more time being creative and/ or in the moment.
There is a great deal of value and utility in the first tables, but the second set are where the creativity really starts to come in and the inspiration kicks in. The treasure hordes tables are organised into 8 treasure chests with their own individual style, lock, trap and a D20 table of 10 entries for each CR. It's incredible how adding these seemingly simple details brings the hordes to life. These chests have inspirational mass and exist on a creative plane, not to mention they contain some wonders I can only pray to Tymora one of my characters has the pleasure to come across.
Yes they are a ready made chest with random/ suggested contents, but they are seeds that can grow locations, dungeons and adventures. Why and where do these chests exist? Who created and stocked them? Why are the trapped and what mischievous mind came up with some of such defences for their booty? We start with a humble ancient dwarven cheat with a classic poison dart with a very low chance of being locked, and go on a journey through an ornate wooden elven chest with contact poison, and a heavily reinforced iron chest that locks the door and fills the room with water, to chests that trap you in the room with them or teleport their would be plundered away!
The chests themselves and their prospective contents can simply populate dungeons and reward your player's adventures, but I can't help but wonder at their stories and want to create them! But it is also totally possible to use their contents in any other container or location, and there ae more tables for that later!
Just getting to take a peak into those CR 17+ chests had me drooling and praying that one day I will have a character worthy of such wondrous riches and powerful magic items!
Following these are monster guardian tables using the D100 with 50 entries method for each CR ranging from a single flameskull, through a young red dragon or rashaka to a terrasque! And so many awesome suggestions along the way that can slot in anywhere, but send me off into rumination and reverie cogitating on who this group of thugs are? How a horde of mimics get together? What are the machinations of this cell of cultists? What's the name and history of the lich in its lair? To my inquisitive mind I see seeds everywhere and I'm pretty sure I can hear bugbears shouting at goblins who grumble at their wolves in turn. Secrets, deals and betrayals whisper to me from these pages...
So up until now I've been projecting my notions on more static items and creatures, but the next section are the NPCs Guardian Statblocks, two for every class, one 5th level and one 10th level, that's 24 NPCs with unique stats, bio with traits and background, and equipment! These range from hired muscle, through a devout defending a temple's treasury and an unflappable Hermit used to being alone with their broken heart, to a Lone survivor of a bandit raid trained by an evil sorcerer to be their castle guardian, and a faithful acolyte betrayed by the master, now zealously guarding their perfidious mentor's tower for themselves -- what happened there!? Each NPC is unique and their short but sweet bios truly imbue them with life and intrigue. Any one of them could be a villain or BBEG (Big Bad Evil Guy) in a quest, adventure or campaign or simply be a booty guard.
If I was already scheming and coming up with plans for chests and creatures, my mind was positively begging me start planning things around these colourful characters with shady pasts, dark intentions, gluttonous greed, impious zealotry or hordes of their own minions on retainer. I cannot wait to introduce these folx to my games!
It also wouldn't take much work for these to become Sidekicks for your adventurers, especially evil parties and characters, but there's enough grey in many of them for them to possibly be swayed to the lighter or at least less evil side of things.
Finally there a have a plethora of miscellaneous D100 tables covering locations, containers, traps, tricks, weapons, armour, adventuring gear and three tables of mundane items. These give almost infinite options for packing all manner of weird and wonderful collections of anything into anything anywhere, taking this beyond treasure to a resource for populating buildings, dungeon, lairs or any place your players might find something with all kinds of miscellanea.
So there we have it! Treasure Finds gives you more time to prep the more creative aspects of your game or saves you time in the moment, but so much more than that, it provides chests full of style and substance. So much more than a series of tables, but it has all the tables you could want too!
I have to be honest, before I read this I would not necessarily picked up a supplement like this, misjudging it as a much drier product than this has shown to be. I'm 100% a convert, but the next treasure supplement I read has a ridiculously high bar set for it. Luckily, I can't see me needing anything more than this for my needs.
[5 of 5 Stars!]