My single greatest problem as a DM or player of Dungeons and Dragons has always been reference materials. For 5e alone, I have dozens of pounds of books, printouts, handouts, and reference sheets. Moving these references to the kitchen for game night alone is a challenge. Forget taking everything I need for local Adventurer’s League games. For each edition I’ve played (3, 3.5, 4, 5), I’ve made spellbooks, reference cards, and my own DM screens in the quest for simpler and faster reference. Finally, someone else has created an easily shared resource: The Deck of Many: DnD 5e reference cards.
The Deck of Many begins in 4 parts: conditions, monsters, weapons, and NPCs. Each deck features two-sided cards based on the SRD, providing a slick (and legal*) option for DMs who don’t want to spend hours generating easy reference materials for themselves.
Each card type has its own composition. Monsters and NPCs have fun art on the front, with name, challenge rating, and racial/alignment information. On the back is a fully fleshed out stat block which is easy to read. Conditions are two-sided, each side featuring a different condition. Deafened, for example, has Paralyzed on the other side. Likewise, weapons have two sides, showing different items. The Greataxe is paired with the Scimitar.
My favorite cards have to be the conditions. Whenever a player has a condition, I can just hand them the card, and leave them in charge of knowing what happens to them. That said, that only works if you have honest players. Best of all, they can keep it on top of their character sheet, so they can’t forget about the condition.
Also included are a number of parody cards which are just too much fun. The Behind Flayer is particularly snicker worthy. The flavor text just kills, in my opinion.
The art was mostly completed by Jordan Richer, and is great fun. But some surprises are in store as well. Jason Engle and Peter Mohrbacher of M:tG fame are both contributing art, with designs by Steve Argyle, Tom Babbey, and Aaron Miller being unlocked as stretch goals.
Here you can see the contribution from Jason Engle, the mighty and terrifying Tarrasque. This 2-card set has 4 sides of info, preventing you from having to keep the Monster Manual open to page 286 for the duration of a legendary encounter.
The Kickstarter funded in a couple of hours, which is no surprise to me, considering the quality of the product. An additional deck for playing the Deck of Many Things has already been unlocked, though the full art has yet to be released.
Backing begins at $10, which rewards the backer with the full PDF of every unlocked card, allowing one to print the cards they want or need most. This PDF is available at all other backing levels. This is a great option for players who don’t want the bulk of cards they might not use, but want to be able to print out exactly the ones they will use.
Starting at $16 backers can choose a single deck from all unlocked decks. I suggest the Conditions deck, or one of the unlocked decks. Shipping at all levels is free to US and Canada.
At this level, players will have their pick of any two decks. I suggest the Conditions and Weapons decks, or opting in for one of the unlocked stretch goal decks.
This level comes with all unlocked decks (5 at the time of this post) and every stretch goal.
The friend bundle doubles up the cards you get at the $49 level.
The epic backing level comes with a hand-crafted deck box, a pair of Mimic pins, and two of each deck.
The Kickstarter campaign launched September 5th and runs until October 5th. With your help, it can unlock all possible stretch goals with ease.
For most DMs, this is a no-brainer. The initial value of the backing was pretty good, but with each unlocked stretch goal, the value climbs. 67 additional cards are being included already, with another 25 listed as they campaign climbs toward $55k.
The Deck of Many: DnD 5e reference cards is a fun collection of reference cards which save time and space for DMs and players alike. The standard backing of $49 provides references for monsters, NPCs, weapons, and conditions, as well as all unlocked stretch goals. This makes it the best value for the individual backer.
I received a small selection of cards for review purposes.
This campaign is being published for 5th Edition through the Open Gaming License, Version 1.0a, under the terms and conditions set forth in the System Reference Document 5.1 as provided by Wizards of the Coast.