D&D 5E Do you ACTUALLY use 3rd Party Books?

In the last 2 years, has your group used 3rd Party content in your game?

  • Yes, we've used player content AND monsters

    Votes: 152 64.4%
  • Yes, but only monsters

    Votes: 42 17.8%
  • No, but I'd allow player content AND monsters

    Votes: 12 5.1%
  • No, but I'd allow monsters

    Votes: 10 4.2%
  • No, I don't allow 3PP

    Votes: 20 8.5%

  • Poll closed .

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I have to say the Campaign Sourcebook and Catacomb Guide was an excellent resource and worth reading now. That was one of my favorites when I was GMing in the 90s:

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In terms of 3rd party I have used a lot of third party material. And I've played whole campaigns of third party books. The d20 Call of Cthulhu was great. It didn't land well for me as much as the 2E books but I ran tons of d20 Ravenloft. I also used a lot of books like the Mongoose material and was constantly scouring d20 third party books for specific things I needed in campaigns. Plus if we are considering retro clones and OSR material, I have made heavy use of those as well.
 

My favorite resource is Strange Tales from the Chinese Studio by Pu Songling. Some of those stories are just a page long, some ten or more pages. But they all each have a strong kernel of inspiration (these are all anomaly accounts, but they are very much like reading a book of folklore).
I had literally never heard of that but it sounds fascinating, just looked it up - I'll see if I can track down a copy.
Also Excalibur was really influential in the gaming community in the 80s and 90s.
Yeah I was a kid in the '80s and teen in the '90s and Excalibur was one of the few fantasy movies that legitimately amazing and it had a tone that was just not like anything else out there. Speaking of which I still haven't watched The Green Knight and I really need to.
 


I had literally never heard of that but it sounds fascinating, just looked it up - I'll see if I can track down a copy.

I love Strange Tales from a Chinese Studio. The Penguin edition translated by Minford is very accessible and affordable, but it only contains about 100 of the stories from Pu Songling's book (it is also at times more on the poetic rather than accurate end of translation from what I understand, but I personally prefer that). If you want a more complete version, and one that is more accurate, you might try the Chinese Classics edition which comes in four volumes (this is much more expensive though). You can also see Pu Songling's stories in movies like A Chinese Ghost Story (1987 version), Painted Skin (many versions of this but I recommend the 2008 version or the early 90s version by King Hu). The sequel to painted skin, Painted Skin Resurrection is really great but not as connected to the source material. The film A Touch of Zen is also apparently Pu Songling inspired but I think it is less obvious.

Some of the accounts are full fledged stories (like the one that A Chinese Ghost Story is based on), and some are just strange things that happened to someone. They are all pretty solid though in terms of giving a GM ideas

If you haven't seen A Chinese Ghost Story I highly recommend watching that (it is a kind of romantic ghost story blended with action, comedy and horror). And Touch of Zen is an astounding movie but requires a little more work as a viewer.

Yeah I was a kid in the '80s and teen in the '90s and Excalibur was one of the few fantasy movies that legitimately amazing and it had a tone that was just not like anything else out there. Speaking of which I still haven't watched The Green Knight and I really need to.

I watched it again last week (the last time I had seen it was probably over ten years ago). I quite like movies and directors that blend image and music in an evocative way. Excalibur is just such a beautiful film, and has an operatic quality that always carries me from one sequence to the next (when I watched it last week I had meant to only watch the beginning to see that scene where Siegfried's Funeral Music swells during the battle, but I kept going on to the next scene, and the next, until it was like 2 or 3 am).
 

If you haven't seen A Chinese Ghost Story I highly recommend watching that (it is a kind of romantic ghost story blended with action, comedy and horror). And Touch of Zen is an astounding movie but requires a little more work as a viewer.
Amazingly I've seen both, from back in the early-mid 1990s when both Channel 4 and to a lesser extent BBC2 (TV channels over here) showed tons and tons and tons of HK movies in late-night slots.
 

guachi

Hero
I have to say the Campaign Sourcebook and Catacomb Guide was an excellent resource and worth reading now. That was one of my favorites when I was GMing in the 90s:

View attachment 272733

I did not pick these up until I bought them on ebay in 2015. All are excellent. "Resource" is the right word. Definitely the kind of thing you can grab, after reading it, to refresh your memory on an idea or item. I've handed the Arms and Equipment Guide to players and told them to get inspiration from it. Maybe an item they really want or just some ideas to flesh out their character.
 

collin

Explorer
I use a plethora of Eberron content off of DM's Guild, including Keith Baker's supplements, because there is nothing for that setting from WotC beyond Rising from the Last War for 5e. I've also used some adventures from Kobold Press. Beyond that, it's just been fan-based material from DM's Guild, although I was contemplating putting $ down for some of the MCDM and Lazy DM materials (like Flee Mortals) and now I may just bite the bullet and get some.
 

Predominantly monsters, treasurers, exploration challenges, journey rules, a few spells, companion guides for APs - stuff like that. I'm kinda wary of player options. Although WotC have had their own share of player option blunders IMO. :ROFLMAO:
 

Whizbang Dustyboots

100% that gnome
This feels like a very good day to back Kobold Press' Deep Magic 2 Kickstarter. Only Monte Cook loves new spells more than I do.

And from their FAQ:
For those who don’t know, Kobold Press is creating a new core fantasy rule system codenamed “Project Black Flag.” Deep Magic (both volumes) will be forward-compatible with the Project Black Flag rule system.
Yes, this project has been in the works for well over a year as an OGL 1.0a release, and it will be our last Kickstarter to use that license.
 




DMZ2112

Chaotic Looseleaf
Yeah, I think a lot of the people fantasizing about Black Flag being somehow wildly different from 5E are missing the point from the view of the participating publishers. They want compatibility for business reasons.
I'd say it's more than a business need, it represents security for all of us. After all, without Durgons & Datgns, how will we dis the duunges of the next 50 years?!

durgonsDatgns.png


If you want something out there, go MCDM!
Don't encourage him. Real dice have numbers. :)
 

Hussar

Legend
I'm utterly shocked by the amount of responses to 3rd party player's content. In all the years of the OGL, from 3e onwards, I've never seen a single player show the slightest interest in 3rd party content. I've tried getting players to use some of it, but, unless it has the WotC seal of approval, they are absolutely not interested. It's good to know that I'm an outlier here.
 

Whizbang Dustyboots

100% that gnome
I'm utterly shocked by the amount of responses to 3rd party player's content. In all the years of the OGL, from 3e onwards, I've never seen a single player show the slightest interest in 3rd party content. I've tried getting players to use some of it, but, unless it has the WotC seal of approval, they are absolutely not interested. It's good to know that I'm an outlier here.
Man, I can't get my players to stop showing up with third party content, like a cat with a dead bird. Fortunately, 5E third party content is a lot better than much of it was during the 3E glut. I rarely have to say no any more.
 

ZeshinX

Adventurer
I generally don't anymore. Used to during the 3.x/PF1e days...but eventually it all simply became far too unwieldy for my group. That certainly isn't the fault of the 3PPs of course. Many factors went into it, but it was just too much (and a lot of that early 3PP stuff was....eesh...it matured very well though and from what I have seen of the 5e stuff, matured elegantly indeed).

I'll use 3PP monster content for my 5e games though. Keeps the players guessing, since most are completely unfamiliar with those. :)
 

Hussar

Legend
Man, I can't get my players to stop showing up with third party content, like a cat with a dead bird. Fortunately, 5E third party content is a lot better than much of it was during the 3E glut. I rarely have to say no any more.
I wish I had this problem. The last time a player showed up with anything non-WotC would have been about four or five years ago when I ran a Dragonheist campaign - he wanted to play a sentient skeleton. Loved the idea and ran with it. Totally cool.

But, other than that? Any time I've put anything non-WotC in front of the players, they just turn up their noses. I wanted to use some fairly cool ship combat rules - a bit crunchier than Ghosts of Saltmarsh, but, not a lot. Couldn't even get them to read the pdf, never minding actually using it. :(

And it's been that way since the 3e days. Hell, even back then I couldn't even get them interested in Dragon mag stuff.
 


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