View Full Version : [3.5] Useful Books?

2009-11-13, 12:26 PM
So I'm interested in hearing what you guys think are the top, must-have books in 3.5. Which books are so chalk filled with useful feat, races, spells and classes that you couldn't go on without it.

So, what are your, say, top 5 or so? And what is it about them that you like?

Pharaoh's Fist
2009-11-13, 12:29 PM
ToB, XPH, SpC, Complete Warrior, Complete Arcane, Complete Mage, Complete Adventurer, PHB2.
The prestige classes, feats, spells and new base classes give a lot of options for players.

Things like Warblades, Shock Trooper, Abjurant Champion, Celerity Defenestrating Sphere, etc.

Dusk Eclipse
2009-11-13, 12:32 PM
Top 5

Complete Arcane/Heroes of Horror (Home of my favorite base classes Warlock and Dread Necromancer respectably)
Races of Stone (Whisper gnome, while cheesey its one of my favorite races)
Magic Item Compendium (Who doesn't love the Magic-mart catalogue
Spell Compendium (As if Full casters needed more toys)
Races of eberron (Love the Setting and races, shifters will always have a special place in my heart)

2009-11-13, 12:33 PM
Races of Stone is one of my favorite books.

For casters, there's some good stuff in Complete Arcane and Complete Divine, too.

2009-11-13, 12:39 PM
The MIC and Spell Comp are both musts. Both condense information from many sources in one easy book.

PHB2, if for nothing more than the Duskblade.

I honestly want to say the Races of X books as one unit, and the Completes as another, but that is cheating, but if I had to cut it down to one book from each, I'd say Races of the Dragon (Sorcs need the power boost) and Comp. Warrior (way too many fun PrCs in there for non casters)

2009-11-13, 01:02 PM
Lots of love for the spell compendium. I've never got the chance to look through Races of Dragon or Heros of Horror. Or the ToB (Tomb of Blood?).

Also, sub question: Which books do you think have absolutly nothing useful on building classes? Not to say they arent interesting, but not for anything particularly useful to a PC (I'd say something like deities and demigods here).

2009-11-13, 01:26 PM

Easily my favorite book for 3.5. Hands-down, no contest. I'd rather have it than any other 3.5 splat. It makes melee playable again, and so much fun.

After that, the MIC. Great items, and great new item types.

Dungeonscape is a great environment book, chock full of cool mundane items and new dungeon ideas. It also has one of the best classes ever - Factotum.

Complete Arcane has a lot of cool mage stuff - I just like it for the Warlock, though. Man, I love Warlock.

Dragon Magic, solely for the Dragonfire Adept. Love that class.

Oh, and Tome of Magic - the Binder is the only thing worth keeping from that book, but oh is it a doozy.


2009-11-13, 01:37 PM
Tome of Battle. Basically 10 ounces of awesome in an 8 ounce can. Balances melee, lets them have fun and interesting in-combat and out-of-combat abilities.

After that, snag SpC and MiC(almost any character can use both of those) and PHBII(lots of great, little bad).

Then you can get to the more specific stuff. The location-based stuff, especially Cityscape and Dungeonscape, are awesome. Frostburn and Sandstorm are cool, but much less universally useful.

2009-11-13, 01:50 PM
For all its flaws, and even though it's not technically 3.5, I really like Savage Species.

I like Races of the Dragon a lot too, but that's mainly because I'm a big fan of Kobolds.

2009-11-13, 01:52 PM
Tome of Battle - this revolutionizes gameplay
Spell Compendium - an incredibly versatile tool for any caster
Magic Item Compendium - an incredibly versatile tool for any character
Player's Handbook 2 - improves noncasters at higher levels, something for everyone

All other books are much less universally useful. I can't think of any others that are a must-have for every player.

Temet Nosce
2009-11-13, 02:13 PM
Spell Compendium Absolute must have if you use magic at all.
Magic Item Compendium Same.
Tome of Battle One of the best books of options out there. Not integral to the game like the other two, but one of the best written books in 3.5
Expanded Psionics Handbook Same.
Complete Series Useful, with options
PHB2 Same
Races of Useful, but not quite so much.
Dungeonscape Has the factotum

2009-11-13, 04:23 PM
Tome of Magic. The Binder is by far the coolest class ever created, and the book is totally worth it just for that.

ex cathedra
2009-11-13, 04:33 PM
1 : Magic Item Compendium
2 : Spell Compendium
3 : Expanded Psionics Handbook
4 : Tome of Battle: Book of Nine Swords
5 : Player's Handbook II

Because, you know, they're awesome. MiC is useful for virtually every character you could ever make with one notable exception, SpC is useful for most casters. XPH is superior to core casting classes and ToB is superior to core melee, while PHB2 just has lots of useful stuff.

2009-11-13, 04:35 PM
Tome of Battle. You are going to get a lot of that.

2009-11-13, 05:02 PM
For those suggesting XPH... why? (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/psionic/psionicPowersOverview.htm)

2009-11-13, 05:25 PM
1. Tome of Battle. Concentrated awesome for your melee characters.
2. Magic Item Compendium. Neat toys that add more variety and utility without being broken.
3. Spell Compendium. Good variety for casters. Even the ranger and paladin get something good out of it.
4. Player's Handbook 2. Four new base classes with more focused abilities (well ok, apart from Dragon Shaman), a collection of rather interesting and useful feats, new spells, and teamwork benefits.
5. Races of Eberron. As the Races books go, I think this one is very well-written. The book is designed to introduce Eberron's races into non-Eberron settings, but it works either way.

(I like psionics too, but yeah--Expanded Psionics Handbook's material is all available on the SRD.)

The Dark Fiddler
2009-11-13, 07:44 PM
For those suggesting XPH... why? (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/psionic/psionicPowersOverview.htm)

SRD doesn't get you the flavor.

Not really necessary, but... eh.

2009-11-13, 07:59 PM
1. Tome of Battle.
2. Magic Item Compendium.
3. Spell Compendium.
4. Player's Handbook 2
5. Dragon Compendium

I'd get these after the core 3, in order.

Tetsubo 57
2009-11-14, 08:27 AM
Player's Handbook II
Expanded Psionics' Handbook
Complete Arcane
Magic of Incarnum
The Races books

2009-11-14, 11:53 AM
Mine are:
Spell Compendium (Options :smallsmile:)
Magic Item Compendium (More options :smallbiggrin:)
Tome of Magic (The shadowcaster, i believe i am the only one in this forum to like this class :smalltongue:)
Complete Mage (Very good and balanced book on its own, and has some flavorful additions such as the Eldrich disciple and the Retributive spell)
Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting (If not for the fugly images it would be first on the list :smallannoyed: AWESOME fluff and first home of the archmage, the shadow adept and the red wizard of thay prestige classes)

2009-11-14, 11:56 AM
Tome of Battle
Players Handbook II