Review of Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium by WotC

… take what you learn here, and put it to sensible use.” ~ Mordenkainen, from the introduction of the Magnificent Emporium

For D&D gamers “of a certain age”, or at least well-versed in previous editions, Mordenkainen is THE ARCHMAGE, the pinnacle of the magical arts, and all-around bad-ass spell-slinger you don’t want to cross. Created by Gary Gygax himself as his player-character alter-ego, Mordenkainen came to be around the time the first Advanced Dungeons & Dragons books were being published, and became a major motivational force in the Greyhawk Campaign Setting as the leader of the Circle of Eight.

Yeah, he’s kind of a big deal…

So it’s intriguing to find his name tied to the new D&D 4E magic item book, a book of a quite different scope from the previous Adventurer’s Vault and Adventurer’s Vault 2. For in Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium, we find the Wizards of the Coast developers taking a new tact into magic item design, to their role and value in the game, and in some cases, a change in the potency of magic items which are one of the great “rewards” for all the “risk” of all dungeon-delving, monster-slaying heroes.

Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium

  • Designers: Jeremy Crawford, Stephen Schubert, Matt Sernett
  • Cover: William O’Connor
  • Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
  • Year: 2011
  • Media: Hardbound (160 pages)
  • Cost: $29.95 (available only from your local gaming stores)

Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium is a role-playing game supplement which introduces a wide range of new mundane, superior, and magical items of all kinds for use with Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition. In addition to items, Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium provides new artifacts, new rules for handling cursed items, as well as adventuring gear, hirelings and henchmen, and more.


Production Quality

Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium is an amazing book, both visually stunning and a pleasure to read. Readers will find that the “fluff” as well as the “crunch” of the new gear and rules are well-written, and presented in a logical format that uses the established item templates recognizable to any 4E gamer.

One of the best features about the book is an appendix of all magic items introduced in Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium, listed by level, and providing a page number reference for ease finding the specific entry. The items are broken down by type and rarity within each level as well, so for instance, finding a 7th Level Uncommon Wondrous Item can be located quite quickly in the supplement from this appendix.

The artwork in Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium is very well done, and shows items both as static objects and used in action scenes. However, I was a bit disappointed at the sparseness of the illustrations, and many items are simply left un-envisioned by the artists. I recall from the previous edition a certain Magic Item Compendium being lavishly illustrated, with nearly every item rendered in some fashion, even if it was as a single work showing multiple items lying jumbled on a table for comparison.


The Magnificent Emporium: What’s Old is New Again!

When reading through Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium, it did not take long to begin to encounter items from the “old days” of D&D – in fact, around page 8. New armor, shields, and weapon types, which had previously been a part of older D&D editions, but not 4E, were now making their debut – but updated with 4E style rules and embellishments.

Oldies but goodies such as ring mail, splint mail, studded leather, and full plate are suddenly back in D&D 4E, and with new properties to make them different than previous armor types. These properties include tough (resist the first critical hit of an encounter), durable (damage resistance of 2-3 on the first hit in an encounter), and barbed (causes damage when you escape a grab or when a creature escapes your grab). New feats are included to allow characters to qualify to use these “new” armor types.

There are “new” weapons coming into 4E play from the previous editions, such as the light mace, pike, and lance. In addition, some weapons have been slightly altered by the small property, allowing small creatures to use them as easily as medium-sized ones – the light war pick, serrated pick, and war pick are some examples of these changes. In addition, there are new feats for Expertise with flails, picks, and polearms, and a new type of feat category of Strike Specialization, which benefits characters with the power strike power.

Introduced for the Essentials fighters in the HotF books, this encounter power can now be paired with a feat in order to produce unique effects based upon the weapon type being used.
For instance, the Heavy Blade Strike feat allows a for an extra melee basic attack against an additional foe if the attack using power strike drops the initial target to 0 hit points – sort of an old school cleave ability.

But the real nostalgia for old school D&D gamers is going to hit when they start perusing the actual magic item lists themselves. In his Legends & Lore articles, Mike Mearls mentioned getting back to the core basics of what made D&D, well, D&D - and reading through the magic item lists was like grabbing the old AD&D Dungeon Masters Guide and leafing through the magic item sections all over again.

If you’ve been pining away for your character to have the old Flame Tongue, Frost Brand, Mace of Disruption, Maul of the Titans, or Mighty Dwarven Thrower like your favorite old edition character had – well get ready to do a jig of glee, because they are back in 4E. Your cleric feeling lonely without his Necklace of Prayer Beads, Candle of Invocation, or Phylactery of Faithfulness… no worries, they’re back! How about Rods of Absorption, Death, Beguiling, and Smiting? Check, it’s in there. And those kick-butt wondrous items of yore (yore = earlier editions) like the Helm of Brilliance, Helm of Teleportation, Ioun Stones, Amulet of Life Protection, Ring of X-Ray Vision, Belt of Dwarvenkind, and Daern’s Instant Fortress?! You don’t have to hold your breath any longer, because they have all been upgraded to D&D 4E. Without actually counting, my impression is that about half the items in Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium are older edition magic items given new stats for D&D 4E gaming.

Of course most of the oldies-but-goodies are Uncommon and Rare items, which are now considered “black box tech”, and cannot be made anymore by modern enchanters of magic items. They must be found or quested after – only Common Items can be re-created or bought at Ye Local Magick Shoppe.

However, the author’s did a fairly awesome job of recreating the power structure of the old items under D&D rules, and many have Properties and Encounter powers as opposed to just a Daily power. In addition, each item comes with a paragraph or two of introduction, detailing the history and origin of the item, to add a role-playing depth to magical gear. And I should mention that consumable items were also given some boosters from the old editions, including a “new” line of healing potions with the familiar monikers of Cure Light Wounds, Cure Serious Wounds, Cure Critical Wounds, and Heal.

There are also six new Artifacts in the game, and again are throwbacks to the “old school” D&D days. The Book of Infinite Spells, Codex of Infinite Planes, Hammer of Thunderbolts (go Thor!), and the Jacinth of Inestimable Beauty are resurfacing in 4E, and ready to blow the minds of Paragon and Epic Tier characters when they stumble upon them. But also there are now Cursed Items in the game again, but the mechanic is not as bad as it was in the old days.

Under the new rules, a cursed magic item is still a magic item, and the curse is sort of an overlay effect which is triggered. For instance, the Necklace of Strangulation can be dropped onto any neck slot item, which operates normally until the curse is triggered – in this case when the owner becomes bloodied and is affected by ongoing damage. At that point, the item starts doing additional ongoing damage to the character, as well as making them vulnerable to ongoing damage attacks, and causes a penalty to saves. Fun! But the authors created rules by which the curse can be permanently lifted, using Arcana skill checks, and returning the item to its normal functions.

Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium also includes more than just standard magic items and artifacts. The authors also include a section on Story Items, which are special items used in the midst of the story arc of a quest in order to accomplish the end goal. An example of a story item might be the magic beans in “Jack and the Beanstalk”, and the authors expand upon this theme offering over a score of these plot devices to use when making quests and adventures.

There is an entire chapter devoted to Adventuring Gear, which includes minor mundane items which grant skill bonuses, such as Camouflaged Clothing, Footpads, and Investigation Gear. Personally, I don’t think the game needs more skill bonuses, as we are already seeing “bonus creep” make skill challenges a joke, but perhaps it might help untrained members of the party be better at certain skill sets. There is also a list of buildings an adventurer can buy, ranging from your average cottage (400 gp) to a castle with a dungeon (1,000,000 gp). And there are new Alchemical items available, which include the famous Oils of Etherealness and Slipperiness from yester-year.

Finally, Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium rounds out with a series of appendices, including the aforementioned item list by level and rarity, but also includes a section on Hirelings and Henchmen for use by player-characters. Personally, the latter was a bit of a disappointment, given that previous editions made it a fairly big deal of the way that henchmen were gathered, requiring a Leadership feat, and offering tables for determining the type and variety and number of followers which could be had. Here the authors did not bother with looking to the old school, and the system for attracting and maintaining henchmen is fairly blasé, and takes up a whole three pages, and another 3 with examples of already made up NPCs which any good DM can make for themselves.


Overall Score: 3.75 out of 5.0


For the most part, I really enjoyed Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium, and found myself grinning at many of the entries which were the 4E interpretations of items from older editions of D&D. This book has a high nostalgia factor, and the re-inventions of “old school” armor, gear, and magic items into 4E statistics were pretty darned good, and I’ll be excited to use them in my campaigns. The new design paradigm of creating interesting stories behind the magic items is definitely good for role-playing - and I forgot to mention that Mordenkainen has many sidebar comments to augment the lore on the items, which could be used as a jumpstart for adventures to locate and retrieve the Uncommon and Rare magical goodies found in this book.

My biggest complaint was the fact that I had to drive all the way out to my “local” gaming store in order to buy the book at full retail price, plus tax, because Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium is not available from the big online mail-order bookstores. Given that my “local” gaming store is a 45 minute drive each way from my house made purchasing this book feel less like fun, and more like overpaying, once you add in the price of gas. I understand the desire to support the brick-and-mortar stores, but making the consumer inconvenienced for a game supplement is not going to make me treasure it more, so much as make me feel like the publisher is really pushing my limits of “brand loyalty”.

So until next review… I wish you Happy Gaming!

Grade Card (Ratings 1 to 5)

  • Presentation: 4.0
  • - Design: 4.5 (Excellent design; a great read)
  • - Illustrations: 3.5 (Nice, but needed to have more)
  • Content: 4.25
  • - Crunch: 4.5 (Good interpretations of old school magic items)
  • - Fluff: 4.0 (Decent fluff; makes magic items more interesting)
  • Value: 2.5 (Highest priced 160-page supplement WotC has published for 4e.)
 

Comments

McTreble

Villager
So after gushing about this book for several paragraphs, you gave it 3.75 because of the availability constraints? Really? How about you add that in a post-script, but not have it affect the score? I'm sorry you had to drive and get the book, and maybe WotC will learn from this fiasco, but in a month's time are any of us going to remember or give a crap about this roadblock? Remember, there was a time when this was NEVER going to be available. We're lucky to have it at all.
 

Asmor

Villager
For what it's worth, I just checked my go-to board game site and they had it available at a competitive price ($20.99). It doesn't appear to be available on Amazon, which is a bit annoying, but it's still available online...
 

spookiebernd

Villager
No need to drive to your FLGS if it's that far away. I ordered it online at my FLGS who has an online store - as convienient as with any other book retailer (and at a reasonable price). The book itself rocks!
 

Windjammer

Villager
This is the sort of revisionism I've come to tire of when it comes to Enworld (postings and reviews). A new product will come up and be proclaimed a great departure from previous designs, and to finally cater to the type of designs fans have been clamouring for.

Case in point: Gardmore Abbey is hailed as the first 4E adventure that puts adventure up front and encounters later. Actually, HS 1 came first. No need to build up fake hype for the new shiny.

Same here:
So it’s intriguing to find his name tied to the new D&D 4E magic item book, a book of a quite different scope from the previous Adventurer’s Vault and Adventurer’s Vault 2. For in Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium, we find the Wizards of the Coast developers taking a new tact into magic item design, to their role and value in the game,


What bollocks. AV 2 was vastly different to AV 1 in exactly the quoted regard, and to lump them together to make MME stand out more smacks of bad advertising.

You continue in that vein and undermine your own credibility with pontifications like these:
How about Rods of Absorption, Death, Beguiling, and Smiting? Check, it’s in there. And those kick-butt wondrous items of yore (yore = earlier editions) like the Helm of Brilliance, Helm of Teleportation, Ioun Stones, Amulet of Life Protection, Ring of X-Ray Vision, Belt of Dwarvenkind, and Daern’s Instant Fortress?! You don’t have to hold your breath any longer, because they have all been upgraded to D&D 4E


I can't be bothered to check them all, but some of these things I didn't have to "hold my breath for" because they were already in 4E. E.g. Ioun Stones in AV 2.

In fact, you completely fail to mention that a lot of material in MME is repeated from AV 1 and AV 2. I understand that MME is the bees knees for players who only own the pithy equipment sections in one of the "Heroes of" booklets, but to gush over the book and say 'oooh, now that's much better than AV 1 and 2' can't be taken seriously.
 
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Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
So after gushing about this book for several paragraphs, you gave it 3.75 because of the availability constraints? Really? How about you add that in a post-script, but not have it affect the score?
3.75 is a very good score, nearly 80% - 2.5 would be average.
 
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Neuroglyph

Villager
So after gushing about this book for several paragraphs, you gave it 3.75 because of the availability constraints? Really?
No not really. The availability constraints are just part of the reason that I gave them an AVERAGE score on the product. You'll also note that this is a $29.95 book and only 160-pages, which puts it as one of the worst content-to-price books WotC has given us under 4E. Sure AV2 was the same price, but it didn't have availability constraints, which made gamers like me spend 12 bucks in gas and pay full retail for a book I could have gotten at 20% off and free shipping from Amazon.


This is the sort of revisionism I've come to tire of when it comes to Enworld (postings and reviews). A new product will come up and be proclaimed a great departure from previous designs, and to finally cater to the type of designs fans have been clamouring for.

What bollocks. AV 2 was vastly different to AV 1 in exactly the quoted regard, and to lump them together to make MME stand out more smacks of bad advertising.
Whoa there, I think it is important to mention here that I don't ADVERTISE, I REVIEW.

And I never made any claim that D&D fans had been "clamouring" for a new design type. But I did note that MME had substantial origin "fluff" information regarding magic items, plus many entries containing 4E interpretations of "old school" magic items from previous editions, and new rules for armor, weapons, cursed items, etc.

Any "clamouring" mentioned in my review was with regards to experienced D&D gamers finally getting access to magic items they remember fondly from previous editions on their old characters. I've seen interest in "old school" magic items from players in my own games, heard it at gaming conventions, and read it in comments on various blogsites - I think adding so many of them back into 4E is a good thing, right?

And yes, MME has substantially more "fluff" text and sidebars regarding magic items than AV2 had. Pointing this out should not be interpreted as maligning AV2, but rather as encouraging WotC to continue their trend of presenting more background material and adventure hooks when they write their supplements, which offers more options for DMs to create unique adventures for their groups by expanding on the "fluff".

I can't be bothered to check them all, but some of these things I didn't have to "hold my breath for" because they were already in 4E. E.g. Ioun Stones in AV 2.

In fact, you completely fail to mention that a lot of material in MME is repeated from AV 1 and AV 2.
Yes, Ioun Stones were in AV2, but MME introduced 6 new ones. I think using words like "a lot" to discuss the amount of previously released magic items from AV1 and AV2 in MME is exaggeration, and can't be taken seriously.

For example:

Arm Slots - 11 new, no reprints
Feet Slots - 7 new, no reprints
Hand Slots - 5 new, 1 reprint
Head Slots - 14 new, 4 reprints
Neck Slots - 11 new, 5 reprints

I hardly think that 10 items out of nearly 60 named here counts as "a lot" - but then it's a subjective term, and open to interpretation. You're certainly entitled to your opinion and interpretation.

However I still stand by my review and the ratings I gave this supplement, and thank you for your feedback, which I hope offers other readers more insight into the review process.
 

Neuroglyph

Villager
3.75 is a very good score, nearly 80% - 2.5 would be average; and the availability constraints are clearly not part of the scoring system Neuroglyph uses.
Actually Russ, I apologize for the contradiction, but as I mention in my own comment, I did use availability constraints in this case because it does change the price point of the supplement. Previously, this was not the case, but MME is a unique case, because no other 4E product has been marketed as "LGS only". And as in my case, limited availability will effect the final cost for gamers who live a substantial distance from a brick-and-mortar gaming store.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
Actually Russ, I apologize for the contradiction, but as I mention in my own comment, I did use availability constraints in this case because it does change the price point of the supplement.
Yeah, you must've posted this while I was editing. I always think the important thing about a review is the actual review, of course, not the score.
 

Chaderick

Explorer
Great Review

Thanks for such a credible, well-conceived review. I have to admit that, having skimmed through it myself, you put words to all of my thoughts. The only thing that I thought personally that wasn't in your review was a little more edition fatigue.

Adding in mundane items like broadswords and scalemail after such a long time without them just struck me as too little, too late. In my estimation, the game world has been constructed without these items, and the life of 4E is well-lived, some would say that it's getting on in age. These would have been welcome items when the rules were first published, but adding them now holds considerably less excitement for me.

Of course, I was one of the people who didn't like that frost giants were kept out of the first Monster Manual so there would be something recognizable and exciting in Monster Manual 2, so I'm biased in that regard...

Regardless, I think your estimate of the new supplement is right on. Thanks!
 

the Jester

Legend
Nice review.

The availability constraints should absolutely effect the review of the book imho; the only reason I haven't bought this is because I have a 3 hour drive to the nearest place that can get it, and I have learned not to buy gaming material sight unseen. That means it isn't a $30 book, but a $30 book + approx $25 in gas plus six hours of my time. Jesus Christ! That better be an amazing piece of work, and I don't think it's that good.

I understand the desire to support FLGSes and I approve of it in principle; this particular approach, however, just ends up with guys like me not buying what would otherwise be an almost certain sale.
 

Windjammer

Villager
And I never made any claim that D&D fans had been "clamouring" for a new design type. But I did note that MME had substantial origin "fluff" information regarding magic items, plus many entries containing 4E interpretations of "old school" magic items from previous editions, and new rules for armor, weapons, cursed items, etc.

Any "clamouring" mentioned in my review was with regards to experienced D&D gamers finally getting access to magic items they remember fondly from previous editions on their old characters.
The line in your review I thought mispresentative of AV 2 was this one:

The new design paradigm of creating interesting stories behind the magic items
I got AV 2 on my lap now, and the fluff entries for items - when they are there (pp. 56-81 especially) - are often more substantial than those in MME. Now it could be the case that MME features a higher number of such entires overall (I haven't checked), but the line I just quoted strikes me as misrepresentative as ever. There is no "new design paradigm".

Yes, Ioun Stones were in AV2, but MME introduced 6 new ones. I think using words like "a lot" to discuss the amount of previously released magic items from AV1 and AV2 in MME is exaggeration, and can't be taken seriously.

For example:

Arm Slots - 11 new, no reprints
Feet Slots - 7 new, no reprints
Hand Slots - 5 new, 1 reprint
Head Slots - 14 new, 4 reprints
Neck Slots - 11 new, 5 reprints

I hardly think that 10 items out of nearly 60 named here counts as "a lot" - but then it's a subjective term, and open to interpretation. You're certainly entitled to your opinion and interpretation.
I thank you for giving us these data. I think it fair to mention that you picked a random 20 pages of the book, so while we have a partial impression we are non the clearer on the overall reprint ratio of the book's content. However, as you nicely put it, the data help individual readers to decide for themselves whether 1 in 6 items being a reprint merits the MVRP or not. Thankfully, threads which document further instances of reprints exist on Enworld.
I'd also add that beyond items, we also get henchmen (DMG 2) and alchemy (from AV 1), neither of which are straight reprints but do trade on extant material which they occasionaly copy, and will on the whole do a lot more for people who don't own DMG 2 and AV 1 than for those who do. (A comparative evaluation of the respective treatments would also have be a welcome addition to the review. :) )

Another interesting question is how useful this book is for players of non-Essentials classes. Suppose I play a druid and want to pick a totem. I could either head over to AV 2 and pick among 29 totems. Or I head over to MME and pick among... 3. I would also note that the new totems fit the revamped role allocation of the Essentials druid and don't really fit the PHB 2 druid well. I'd be interested to hear other break downs for other classes. I picked druid because that's the one I currently play (PH 2/Primal Power build).

PS And what he hell is it with potted plants? One thread and 3 people who've basically registered (post count: 1 (x2), 4) to tell us that it's a) a greaaaaat book and b) totally worth your time and money driving to the FLGS. Seriously, what gives?
 
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BriarMonkey

Villager
I guess it's a good thing I don't do reviews.

Had a book, using this one as an example, been something that I wanted, yet the only way to acquire said book was to drive to my local game store (if there is one), I would give the book an well earned Fail.

As has been said, it is one thing to support the game stores, but it is completely another to limit a product in such a way that interested parties can not obtain said book. (And yes, there are many who do not have a store in a reasonable driving distance, and many more stores that do not have an on-line ordering presence.)

Just another "gimmick" that makes one wonder what they are thinking at WotC.
 

hemera

Explorer
I just wanted to say that I found the review to be pretty much spot on with what my group had to say. (DM bought Threats of Nentir Vale to share with the group, so I bought this) Above average book, but not really worth the full price I paid for it. If I would have gotten it from Amazon, sure it would have been fine, but gas, time and msrp = meh.

And neuroglyph, I've really appreciated the reviews you've done. The Nentir Vale one convinced our group to buy the book.
 

Neuroglyph

Villager
I got AV 2 on my lap now, and the fluff entries for items - when they are there (pp. 56-81 especially) - are often more substantial than those in MME. Now it could be the case that MME features a higher number of such entires overall (I haven't checked), but the line I just quoted strikes me as misrepresentative as ever. There is no "new design paradigm".
Windjammer, I think the misrepresentation is suggesting that AV2 was anything like MME. It wasn't, and there is definitely a new attitude at WotC concerning creating useful background information and hooks. I'm not sure how you possibly missed that EVERY magic item in MME, including magical ammo, potions, alchemy items, and other consumables has a "fluff" paragraph or two introducing it - and in some cases, a sidebar comment from Mordenkainen. I'm not sure how, if you bought MME, you could have missed that comparing it to the AV2 in your lap, which only has a few sidebars scattered throughout the book, and many items have no origin information at all.

I think it fair to mention that you picked a random 20 pages of the book, so while we have a partial impression we are non the clearer on the overall reprint ratio of the book's content. However, as you nicely put it, the data help individual readers to decide for themselves whether 1 in 6 items being a reprint merits the MVRP or not. Thankfully, threads which document further instances of reprints exist on Enworld.
I can't help but notice you inferring that I selected a specific sampling of the MME's pages which was not representative of the whole. Since you seem very concerned about clarifying the overall reprint ratio, I took the time to complete a full accounting of MME's items:

Mundane Armor - 7 new, 0 reprints
Magic Armor – 17 new, 0 reprints
Mundane & Superior Weapons – 6 new, 16 reprints*

Magic Weapons – 26 new, 0 reprints
Magical Ammunition – 7 new, 0 reprints
Superior Implements – 37 reprints**

Magic Implements – 39 new, 0 reprints
Magic Arm slots – 11 new, 0 reprints
Magic Feet slots – 7 new, 0 reprints
Magic Hand slots - 5 new, 1 reprints
Magic Head Slots – 14 new, 4 reprints
Magic Neck Slots – 11 new, 5 reprints
Magic Rings – 6 new, 0 reprints
Magic Waist slots - 3 new, 4 reprints
Wondrous Items – 18 new, 15 reprints
Consumable Items – 22 new, 7 reprints
Other Consumable – 14 new, 0 reprints
Artifacts – 7 new, 0 reprints
Cursed Items – 15 new, 0 reprints
Adventuring Gear - 36 new, 6 reprints
Buildings – 14 new, 0 reprints
Trade Goods – 16 new, 1 reprint
Alchemy Items – 16 new, 4 reprints


*Some reprints were needed to change some weapon categories or add new properties (like Small)

** Some reprints added DDI only content (Dragon Magazine) items to an official supplement.

This gives a total of 317 new items and 100 reprints. Of the reprints, 60 are mundane weapons, adventuring gear, and superior weapons or implements, which took up around 5 pages in Mordenkainen's Magnificent Emporium. If you remove those 60 items from the tally, unless you really want to quibble over mundane items which covered a minuscule fraction of MME's pages, you have a ratio of 11% reprints out of a total of 357 items. So actually 1 in 6 was indeed an unfair sampling, when the total is more like 1 in 10.

I hope that this new data helps you and other D&D gamers to make the decision about buying your own copy of the MME or not, and to decide whether the information in MME is worth the added cost of a trip to the FLGS.
 
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Windjammer

Villager
This gives a total of 317 new items and 100 reprints.
Yes, and once we discount that 24% of the items are reprints and that other stuff like "the Henchmen and Hirelings article from DDI is reprinted in its entirety" (amazon.com) then 100% of the stuff in MME is new.

I hope that this new data helps you and other D&D gamers to make the decision about buying your own copy of the MME or not, and to decide whether the information in MME is worth the added cost of a trip to the FLGS.
Absolutely. Thank you again for the effort of providing these data. We may draw vastly different conclusions from the data, but it's of great service that you provided these. Many thanks, and XP gladly given.
 

Neuroglyph

Villager
Had a book, using this one as an example, been something that I wanted, yet the only way to acquire said book was to drive to my local game store (if there is one), I would give the book an well earned Fail.

As has been said, it is one thing to support the game stores, but it is completely another to limit a product in such a way that interested parties can not obtain said book. (And yes, there are many who do not have a store in a reasonable driving distance, and many more stores that do not have an on-line ordering presence.)

Just another "gimmick" that makes one wonder what they are thinking at WotC.
I would have to agree, and that WotC "gimmick" is one of those great mysteries of this book that will almost certainly never be adequately explained to the D&D fans. There are plenty of places in the US alone that don't have a cnearby FLGS, and where mail order is the only reasonable way to purchase our D&D materials. I'm sure there are plenty of folks who had to travel much farther than I did to get to their "local" store, and will be mightily overcharged for this book if we add the MSRP and the price of gas for the trip.

If WotC REALLY wanted to take a stab at leveling the playing field, they would offer incentive packages to the brick-and-mortar stores so that they can offer D&D products at the 20% discount the online stores do. Or maybe even throw in a bonus item, only available at real stores that the bookvenders.com don't get to offer the customers.

Of course that solution would bite into the profit margin on the books, so it's clearly better to just let the fans foot the bill for WotC's "generosity" to the FLGS's, right?
 

Samurai

Explorer
I ordered this at my FLGS, but it's still not in yet. I didn't know it had reprinted material in it when I ordered it, that might have made a difference. However, some of it is from DDI (which I don't subscribe to), and some it seems was changed. Why were the other items reprinted though? If it wasn't changed in some way, and had already been printed in a book rather than just online, why bother to reprint it? Just to fill space? That's really disappointing.
 

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