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Player's Option: Heroes of Shadow: A 4th Edition D&D Supplement - Wizards RPG Team

Player's Option: Heroes of Shadow: A 4th Edition D&D Supplement

Author: Wizards RPG Team
Book title: Player's Option: Heroes of Shadow: A 4th Edition D&D Supplement
ISBN: 078695745X
ISBN13: 978-0786957453
Publisher: Wizards of the Coast; 4 edition (April 19, 2011)
Language: English
Category: Gaming
Rating: 4.6/5
Votes: 123
Pages: 160 pages
More formats: azw mobi rtf lit

For heroes who bask in darkness.The Shadowfell is a cold, grim place through which the spirits of the dead must pass on their way to . . . wherever. Dark, evil things live there, suffused with the power of shadow. Some mortals in the natural world learn how to tap into this source. Assassins. Necromancers. Hexblades. By all accounts, a ruthless lot. However, not all beings that draw strength from the Shadowfell are vile, blackhearted fiends. A few even dare to call themselves heroes, using the power of darkness to fight darkness. Are they evil? No. Deeply disturbed and hounded by their own dark demons? You bet. Player’s Option: Heroes of Shadow™ focuses on characters that fight evil in ways that make others cringe. In addition to exploring the nature of the shadow power source, this book presents races, classes, feats, powers, and other options aimed at players hungry to play the archetypal antihero with a dark edge.
Reviews: (7)
As a shadow-focused book in the Essentials line, HoS is a quality supplement. I DMed the Dark Legacy of Evard official D&D Encounters events for a full season, so I got to see all of the classes in action. The classes generally have interesting flavor, and are offensively focused. They are well-designed enough to fit into existing parties.

There are also new options for existing classes and builds, including original 4th edition classes (Wizard, Cleric, and Warlock options), so that is a nice bonus. You can see that WotC's investment to delay the book and change it to hardcover paid off in additional content and a more well-rounded supplement.

However, I have to question many of the thematic choices made by the writers. This book often talks about the disadvantages of trading/binding your soul or giving up some of your humanity in exchange for power. But other than those cursory references, there are no substantial downsides or limitations to, for example, the Blackguard ("Anti-Paladin") or Gloom Pact Hexblade classes. It's a quirk I've noticed with 4th Edition - in the name of balance, classes have become a little too homogenized and similar in their abilities for my taste.

Still, anyone who has actually played using this supplement rather than arguing about it on the internet will tell you that it gets the job done well enough. The whole 4th edition "Everyone is friends now, deal with it" thematic issue is more of a matter of one's personal taste.
This is a very cool addition for DnD 4e. It adds new races and classes (among other things) - all of which are very cool and well written. This book certainly enhances my DnD 4e experience and I have no doubt it would for anyone else as well.
If you want to take a walk on the darker side of things without the plunging headfirst into evil this is your kiddie pool to dip a toe in. You can take it a lot farther...but I'm looking at putting a sharper edge on my character before he comes to his senses.
I am very pleased that I purchased this product. The other reviews seemed "iffy", but the quality is top rate. I'd recommend this product to fantasy gamers who are interested in dark or "shadowy" persons or fantastic races within the context of their game, whether or not they use D&D.
4th Edition has so many player options. Love it.
I've been waiting for this book for a long time now, and now that I have it I'm slightly disappointed. My number one highlight? The Assassin class looks fantastic, rich with it's own unique character (I feared it would be too similar to the Rogue class, but I am pleasantly surprised). It gets the use of it's own arsenal of weapons, and having a variety of weapons and poisons is core to the class. My number one disappointment? I was hoping for more necromancy. I like (and was expecting) necromancy to be added to the Mage class. I was just hoping for more. The choices for necromancy powers is severely limited. Instead of having a smattering of a few new powers covering two new schools of magic (nethermancy and necromancy) I feel it would have been a more "finished" book to have included just one new, highly developed school (necromancy). Overall I think the book is worth getting, the shadowy bits included will add depth to any campaign or character, whether they are dark or not. It would also be great fun with this book to have a totally dark, gloomy campaign with a party full of vampires, necromancers, blackguards, etc.
Having waited till the book was in print for some time before purchasing it, I am glad my copy was not bound incorrectly. Also, it is in great condition.

Now, the content is on par with most other options books. And I do not regret purchasing it. I really like the idea of the soul shards and the Vampire as a quasi race-class. Harkening back to the 3Ed Savage Species rules... (Which basically destroyed the game balance for any 3Ed game but I digress...) We need to see more of this IMO.

The single Gem I can point to is the: Epic Destiny - Keepers of the Everflow. I can already see that being a game shifting story line for even well established Epic Level campaigns.
:) very good. I like it I would get it if I was you so ya get cuz you will like it.
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