Do you need to get H1 or anything as a player?

13 posts / 0 new
Last post
I see lots of people announcing how they're pre-ordering H1 and stuff. However everywhere claims that players only need the Player's Handbook 4th Edition to play 4th Edition games.

My question is: If I want to play in a particular D&D game (let's go with 2 examples: Keep on Shadowfell and Forgottem Realms), how can I do so without knowing anything about the world my character grew up in?

Do the H1s and stuff have information geared for dungeon masters only, with all of the information players need to know on the setting in the PHB?

How about with Forgotten Realms? How can I play a character in this world (which I believe does differ from the standard D&D world, if there is a standard one, otherwise all the different campaigns would be set in the same world) without knowing anything about it?

I come from a background in MUDs where its highly recommended (if not required) that you read up on your starting town, class and race. So the idea of playing a character without doing these things seems foreign to me, and yet everything I've seen claims its so. So thanks in advance for clearing it up

Also one last question. How is it that H1 comes out before the PHB, DMG and all that stuff? Is it a D&D 3.5 game?
H1 is essentially a preview adventure, that gives you a basic rundown of 4e. It sets down the rules and pre-made characters you need to run that specific adventure.

So you don't need the PHB to run H1, however, you can ONLY run H1 with H1. When you get the PHB (for players) and DMG and MM (for DMs) then yeah your ready to go, for your own adventure.

FR is still reliant on PHB, DMG, and MM. Since they are still the basis of FR, and you can technically run FR with just those, if you house-rule/just care about fluff.

There will be a FR Campaign and Player Guide coming out for 4e soon after launch.

As for your character-building. Well you still need to make up a background, but that is determined by what you want your character background to be and what your DM's world is like. So you still need to read up on class and race, etc.

Just take note though for H1, given that it is a preview has the characters made up already.
Thanks I'll get H1 and then if I like it get the PHB and check out the Classifieds for a game I can join
Just remember if you are only a player you might not want to read the H1 mod. It is a preview and comes with pre-gen characters. I would check around in your area and see who else is planning on getting it and coordinate it so that the person that will be running it gets the adventure. Just my thoughts.

I am going to be hosting previews throughout the summer at the local public library because our FLGS does not really have the room to host things.
Just remember if you are only a player you might not want to read the H1 mod. It is a preview and comes with pre-gen characters. I would check around in your area and see who else is planning on getting it and coordinate it so that the person that will be running it gets the adventure. Just my thoughts.

I am going to be hosting previews throughout the summer at the local public library because our FLGS does not really have the room to host things.

Wouldn't I need H1 as a player? Although by the sounds of it, given its only coming out 3 weeks before the PHB, I might want to just wait for that instead.
It be best, for your DM to print out the rule-section and your own character-info but keep the rest to him/herself.
Adventure modules are traditionally DM-Only when it comes to reading. It's up to your DM to give you information regarding characters, starting towns, etc.

If you plan on being a player in H1, don't read it. Nothing ruins an adventure more than already knowing 90% of what happens.

As for the rest of the books, the ones usually considered "DM Books" are
  • Dungeon Master Guide
  • Campaign Settings/Guides
  • Adventures

Everything else is okay for a player, as long as you keep your DM updated (and they approve). If you want racial information for a setting, you can purchase the Player's Guide for the setting, which should also include feats, classes, basic setting information, etc.
Oh great, thanks Dalzig I'll either skip H1 (as I'm not too sure how it would work the information being told over the internet) or check it out
As for the rest of the books, the ones usually considered "DM Books" are
  • Dungeon Master Guide
  • Campaign Settings/Guides
  • Adventures

Don't forget Monster Manuals, nothing spoils a game more than knowing the ins and outs of enemies, I much preferred playing D&D when it was all new to me and I knew nothing about the creatures, made things more exciting.

As a player you don't really need any books, as your DM will almost certainly have all of the 3 core books, you can just use his PHB, you won't be constantly needing it throughout the session. I do like having my own copies though, but I only bought them after a couple of sessions when I knew I liked the game.

As for backgrounds, it really doesn't matter too much where your from, the most important thing IMO, is who your character is. While where you come from has an impact on this, it's not nearly as important as knowing how you character acts. I find a just a rough description of where the character is from is suitable in most games.

If you don't know the setting you're playing in, you can ask your DM some advice on where to come from, usually he'll suggest you come from near where the campaign begins, but it's not necessary so long as the character has an explanation why he's moved so far from home.

Also remember that a map of a campaign setting is very blank, it only shows the major cities, towns and landmarks, there are thousands of villages not displayed. Some might be only a few houses big, a tavern and a few amenities for the surrounding farms, some might almost be the size of a town.

When you find a game, you'll first have to find out the setting, FR isn't the only setting, although it's probably the most popular. Greyhawk is the default setting for 3rd edition, but I don't think 4E is actually having a default setting. Eberron is also a very popular setting, and then there are the DMs who make up their own world.

So really, the best thing is to just think of a character concept, then when you meet your DM, fill in the blanks of where your character is from with his/her help.
Don't forget Monster Manuals, nothing spoils a game more than knowing the ins and outs of enemies

Heh, I knew that one ;)

As a player you don't really need any books, as your DM will almost certainly have all of the 3 core books, you can just use his PHB, you won't be constantly needing it throughout the session.

Unfortunately living in an area where no-one (that I know of) plays D&D means I can't do this. Fortunately though I can play at all thanks to the internet. Thanks for the advice though I'll definitely use it when I get to play

As for the rest of the books, the ones usually considered "DM Books" are
  • Dungeon Master Guide
  • Campaign Settings/Guides

I don't mean to be obtuse but you're not including books like Forgotten Realms Player's Guide in this list are you?
I just wanted to mention that H1 is supposed to come with the H1 book, a mini version of the PHB, DMG, and MM. Enough info in each to play H1 from 1st to 3rd level I would assume, but I can't really confirm this. Most people are rushing to buy it so they can get a sneak peek at the rules and such and play before the main books start coming out. I would say that it would be a good investment if you really have to have the info in advance, but if you can wait the month to get the PHB, then wait. I for one am getting the H1 to test out 4e with some friends before the core books come out.
No, the players guide to Faerun/Eberron is for players :P
No, the players guide to Faerun/Eberron is for players :P

Just double checking ;) Thanks again.