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Frostburn (3.5)
$34.95 $16.99
Average Rating:3.4 / 5
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Frostburn (3.5)
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Frostburn (3.5)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Daniel S.
Date Added: 10/26/2004 14:52:46

I can't comment on the PDF, since I don't own it and haven't seen it, but I can comment on the book itself (which I HAVE read). On that subject, I have only to say that it's barely worth the paper it's printed on (so I guess the PDF IS an improvement...). If you want to run an all-cold-environs game, I can see where it could be useful, but overall, the book feels slapped-together and shoddy.

Look at the races and prestige classes; MAYBE half of them feel genuine. The others feel like they were created because the book lacked enough material to fill it out. There's a clear attempt to make it seem like, if you have ONE room in your dungeon that's magically cold (or even brisk!) you NEED this book; that's blatantly untrue.

Don't get me wrong. I LOVE D20 and D&D, but if this is telling of WotC's environmental line, then I would've liked to see one, singular, environmental BOOK comprising only the good stuff from this new line. Splitting them up is a blatant attempt to get more money. All told, there's about 30% useful material and 70% fluff.

My players can tell when I try to pull Deus Ex Machina on them; that's why I stopped. I can sense the old God-Machine cranking up at WotC now. And no amount of keyword searching and now small file-size can fix that. I've found no reason to buy this book, and WotC failed at their attempt to create one.

[1 of 5 Stars!]
Frostburn (3.5)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Sterling K. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/29/2004 13:29:58

Here's why I like this product. I am going to talk about the material first and then go into the PDF.

It has all the expected. It has chapters on races, classes, feats, prestige classes, equipment, spells, monsters, and adventures in or about cold. It covers rules for cold terrain, cold magical effects, and combat in cold. The art is in the same style as other Wizards of the Coast products. It was nice, but didn't wow me.

If this is the first in Wizards of the Coasts environmental series, then I think it is off to a good start. I plan on picking up Sandstorm because Frostburn was done so well.

As for the PDF here at Drivethrurpg, it is worth picking up. The PDF is bookmarked though only to the chapters. However the contents are interactive, so what is missing in the bookmarks is made up for in the contents (i.e. you can click on something in the contents and it will take you straight to it.) It is an electronic document and is text searchable. The pictures could have had a higher resolution, but it is hardly noticeable. One major plus which is probably related to the graphics is the small size of the PDF. It weighs in at 6mb, small enough to fit on a PDA.

IMHO Wizards of the Coast is off to a good start with Frostburn. I look forward to the rest of the environmental series and their future e-books.

[5 of 5 Stars!]
Frostburn (3.5)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Lachie H.
Date Added: 09/25/2004 23:49:45

WotC entering the eBook scene is an excellent idea, but it's initial entry is disappointing.

When I read the announcement about Frostburn in eBook format I was excited - I like having my supplements in eBook form on the computer, saving valuable desk and shelf space and being able to easily transport various supplements easily.

There are many advantages to eBooks - I don't need to preach to the converted.

However, it's just not worth me buying the eBook version - so I haven't and I won't.

Frostburn is a good print product from what I've skimmed through in my local games shop, if perhaps overpriced for a product with a restricted scope. As an eBook at $35 US though, the price equates to at least what I'd pay in Australia when shipping is taking into account. I was hoping for $20-25 US at most, given it's digital format.

I suspect I'd agree with many of Christopher Nillsen's comments about quality, so I will not repeat them again given I have not purchased the product. Unfortunately, even though I like the concept of WotC eBooks, it's not enough for me to blindly support such a badly pitched initial offering.

Summary: Critical Miss, Try again...

[2 of 5 Stars!]
Frostburn (3.5)
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast
by Christopher N. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/25/2004 08:59:57

Let us get the obvious cons of this product out the way first:

It is way overpriced. We are all fully aware how much less it costs to copy a digital file a million times than it is to produce a fully bound physical book.

It costs too much. Selling this puppy right next to other examples of digital translations of their competitor's products is almost a surefire way to guarantee almost no sales.

Is is only a minor supplemental text, not a core rulebook or even something that might be considered essential reading for D20 Dungeons and Dragons players.

It is expensive. Did I mention this already?

Okay, now that that is out of the way, let us examine the pros:

The file is only 6 megabytes! For all you pirates out there enjoying your scans of 60-150 megabytes, this should be the best news you have heard all year! I have looked through this product from digital cover to cover, and while the scans of the illustrations may not be at super high resolution, they are certainly clear and load quickly.

The file is digital text, not a scan. This means that you can do full keyword searches. Try that with your pirated scans.

It is an official Wizards product! For those of you who are supporting all the other game producers out there and hate the Wizards, this means nothing. But there are those of out there that have been waiting and waiting for Wizards to do something like this.

The file is tiny! Did I mention that one, too?

So, it is expensive. It is not a core rulebook. It costs a lot of money. But this is an experiment by Wizards to see if the demand is there for their products. I bought this thinking I was supporting the start of something wonderful. I was imagining carrying my iBook to a game and having every Wizards text at my fingertips, all taking up less than a gigabyte of hard drive space, fully searchable, and COMPLETELY LEGITIMATE.

For those of you out there who have the money, it is worth it to contribute to this effort. I fully believe that if Wizards receives the support for this kind of product they will release higher resolution copy at a lower price point. So maybe this first effort is a bit of a marketing snafu. You cannot make omelettes without breaking a few eggs.

[4 of 5 Stars!]
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