Makes monsters much easier to add unique characteristics

Monster Manual: Core Rulebook III  v. 3.5 (Dungeons & Dragons d20 System) - Skip Williams

Well, I am currently 30000 ft over the South China Sea, sitting in economy class on a Cathay Pacific Flight. For those who want to simply read the review, well, you can always skip this paragraph. Anyway, I generally fly economy simply because it is cheaper, and that there are much better things that I can do with my money than blow it on more leg room and for stewards to be extra-nice. To be honest, if they are only being extra-nice to me because I am paying them lots of money, then I am not really interested in that person, but rather those who are extra-nice to you for no reason at all. Those who insist on paying money to have people be nice to them obviously have some sort of issue. Mind you what is interesting is that staring out the window I have noticed that cloud formations have taken the shape of the islands that they are hovering over.

However, this is the first of the many Monster Manuals that were released for the 3rd Edition Dungeons and Dragons game (actually it is a rewrite of the original 3rd edition, but this is the one I own), and to be honest with you there is not much to say about it beyond what I have already said about the 3rd Edition. While Wizards have returned to the style that was used in the 1st edition (namely that the whole one monster/page idea was scrapped). However, the way the system has been designed, it is easier to modify the monsters, and even give them unique characteristics, which was not as easily done in the previous editions. In fact it is a lot easier to give monsters character classes and buff them up than it was in the earlier editions. Other than that, this book contains many of the standard monsters, and is very useful to have around when either designing adventures or running a game.

The other thing that I should say about this is the section on designing monsters at the end of the book. Another thing that I really liked about 3rd Edition is nothing was set in stone. The monsters that were placed in the book were more templates (though they also have monsters which are actually templates, meaning that you take another monster and the use the template to increase its power). Not only does 3rd Edition give you options in the monster description of increasing (or decreasing) their relative power, but they also have the section at the end which not only assists you in creating your own monsters, but also tailoring the monsters in the book to make them more unique. Also, the ability to be able to add character classes to a number of the humanoid (or even more intelligent) monsters makes this system so much more flexible, which is why I liked it so much. It is a shame that I don't have a roleplaying group anymore, but then again time is also much more of a premium commodity now.