The 10 Best Books For Fifth Edition

The fifth edition of Dungeons & Dragons is the most streamlined iteration the game has ever seen. With mechanics that have been compressed and balanced with no loss of depth, the fifth edition allows new players to quickly enjoy D&D without getting lost through complexity, while still offering considerable depth for veteran tabletop RPGs.

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As the fifth edition has been going strong since 2013, many books have been published to explain and expand the rules of the game, while other books contain fully elaborated adventure modules. So today we’re going to examine the fifth edition books of D&D and find out which ones are most worth a gamer’s time!

10 Guild Master’s Guide to Ravnica

Guildmasters Guide to Ravnica is a must-have for anyone who enjoys both Dungeons and Dragons and Magic: the Gathering. The book is a cross between D&D and Magic and describes much of the environment around the guild-run plane of Ravnica. Not only does the book contain a wealth of tasteful information about each of the guilds of Ravnica, but also many new playable races that can be found on Ravnica, such as the Loxodons and Simic Hybrids. Similarly, the guild master’s guide to Ravnica is home to numerous powerful subclasses, such as the spore circle for druids. The book even includes information that players can use to create entire campaigns in the world of Ravnica, as well as magical items and characters that may be encountered!

9 Curse of Strahd

When it comes to the fifth edition adventure modules, it’s tough to rival the mature fantasy horror from Curse of Strahd. Based on the legendary Ravenloft, part of D&D since 1983, Curse of Strahd provides the setting and adventure for modern design and audiences. Curse of Strahd, a gothic horror campaign with one of the most famous villains in D&D in the form of Strahd Von Zarovich, is the perfect adventure module for DM looking for a finely tuned horror adventure for their players.

8th Explorer’s Guide To Wildemount

Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount is for fans of Critical Role, Guildmasters Guide to Ravnica is for fans of Magic: The Gathering. Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount is a campaign setting that takes place on the Wildemount continent. It has all the information you need to run a campaign in the world of Critical Role!

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This book contains numerous notable subclasses such as the incredible subclass of Echo Knight fighters and the wizarding schools of chronurgy and graviturgy. Like Guildmasters Guide to Ravnica, the book also introduces new races and magical items, and even introduces brand new spells!

7th Mordenkainen’s Book of Enemies

mordenkainen d & d

While the Monster Handbook is often described as a mandatory purchase for DMs, Mordenkainen’s Book of Enemies is a book that greatly expands the monsters that can be included in a campaign. Modenkainen’s Tome of Enemies is essentially a second monster manual, while the monster manual is filled with monsters with a variety of challenge values. It is home to many of the toughest and most dangerous enemies adventurers can encounter, such as Astral Dreadnoughts and Elder Tempests!

6 Volos Guide to Monsters

Volo's guide to monster coverage

Although the Monster’s Guide and Mordenkainen’s Book of Enemies are devoted to every book devoted to monsters that players can battle, Volo’s Guide to Monsters includes monsters with a closer look.

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Volo’s Guide is a book that contains in-depth information about numerous types of monsters and how they can be incorporated into a world and how they behave. This can help DMs paint an even more vivid picture of the creatures in a campaign and how they interact with the world around them. This book even includes information on how to build playable characters around races previously covered as monsters in the Monster Guide, such as bugbears, goblins, and goblins!

5 Xanathar’s Guide to Everything

Xanathar's Guide to Everything

Released in 2017, Xanathar’s Guide to Everything is a substantial addition to the core rules of the fifth edition of D&D. The book adds a wide range of subclasses, including two to three for each class, and gives players plenty of additional options when creating new ones Characters. Additionally, Xanathar’s Guide to Everything includes tons of new talents for players to use, as well as a litany of powerful spells like the Devastating Crown of Stars!

For DMs, the Xanathar Guide contains numerous ways to spice up dungeons and traps, which makes it a solid addition for gamers and DMs alike.

4th Dungeon Master’s Guide

The Dungeon Master’s Guide is the third and final of the core books published for the fifth edition. It’s an excellent addition to any D&D gamer’s library interested in becoming a DM. While most D&D rulebooks focus on aspects of character creation or adventure, as the name suggests, the DM guide is devoted to assisting dungeon masters. The book contains numerous useful tables that can help with the random generation of NPCs and encounters, and can help a new DM get used to everything that goes into running a campaign.

3 Tasha’s cauldron of everything

Cover Tasha's cauldron with everything

The most recently published book on this list, Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything, is possibly one of the most important books in the fifth edition to have been published since the 2013 edition began.

Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything includes new subclasses for each previously established class, while the previously marginalized Artificer class gets a new official home. In addition to adding new subclasses, each class received some adjustments, such as: B. Balance changes and access to new spells. This book even includes some notable rule changes, such as new means of creating a character’s background and an official means of changing your own subclass!

2 Monster manual

It is hard to imagine running a D&D campaign without a copy of the Monster Handbook, which is full of statistics sheets for D&D’s most famous monsters. The Monster’s Guide has everything a gamer needs to know about the lowest goblins and goblins to the most devastating ancient dragons. Not only does this book contain all of the statistics about these monsters, but it also contains the lore of most of its monsters, which contain tasteful information such as personalities, backgrounds, habits, and the environments and hiding spots in which these creatures reside.

1 Player manual

Cover of the fifth edition

If a player wants to start playing D&D without needing more than one book, they need look no further than the player’s manual. This book contains the core rules of the game, as well as information about the game’s core races, each class (except for Artificers), and the backgrounds for new characters. While every other book on this list is excellent on its own, the Player’s Handbook is the foundation on which everything else is built and can explain everything a new gamer needs to know about the fifth edition of D&D.

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About the author

Paul DiSalvo
(103 articles published)

Staff writer Paul DiSalvo is a writer, comic book creator, animation enthusiast, and game design enthusiast currently based in Boston, Massachusetts. He studied creative writing at the New Hampshire Institute of Art and Otis College of Art and Design and is currently writing for CBR, ScreenRant, GameRant and TheGamer. In addition to writing, he directs and produces the podcast “How Ya Dyin ‘?” He enjoys collecting comics, records and winning in Samurai Shodown.

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