Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition Spelldeck is a fantastic addition both for the dungeon master and the players themselves. I did not get deep into playing dungeons and dragons till around 4th edition. My first exposure to it was in 3rd edition in high school, so until 5th edition, my main driver was 4th. One of the redeeming factors that I thought 4th edition had was the spell sheets. I remember needing to print off 2 or even 3 separate sheets in order to have all the possible spells that my wizard would use. The perk of this though was that I did not need to peruse through the Player's Handbook and would have access to the most recent spell releases due to the sheets being printed online.
Fast forward to 5th edition and the ability to view spells has never been easier to do. There are 3rd party apps, D&D Beyond, and other services online that accomplish what spell sheets did easily. But for someone like me, even to the gripping of my Dungeon Masters, I preferred to run my character from the print out sheets and not the systems that had this information online, usually behind a paywall.
One thing that I am so happy that Wizards of the Coast decided to do was to create these spell book cards for different classes. Imagine taking these the spell sheets from 4th edition and cutting them up into standard sized playing cards. then selecting what your character is allowed to have from the lot and then laying them on the table. Turning them over as spell slots get used up throughout the day before a long rest.
I feel like this idea is brilliant from an already existing system in 4th. But this allows for me to keep my phone or my laptop closed and off and allows me to be more invested in the story being told by the DM. My group is less annoyed cause I know exactly what I am going to do just by looking at my options of spells I am able to use.
If there is 1 box of spell cards for 5th edition that I recommend, it’s the arcane spell deck. This is because the spells available in it have more than just player uses. As a Dungeon Master, selecting cards out of it for the boss fight really helps keep my combat scenario together and minimizes the time that I need to look up any specifics to spells the monster requires.
Arcane Spelldeck Cost
The price for this product has the highest buy in of any of the spell books at $23, because there are simply so many arcane abilities. This set includes 257 cards with spells and cantrips for Wizards, Warlocks and Sorcerers. They can also be used by a DM. The cards don’t feel like magic the gathering cards but actually like cards that a dry erase marker can be used on which is a really handy feature built right into them. They are two sided with one containing all the normal spell information, descriptions, needed components distance, casting time, power boost based on the level the spells are being cast at and what type the spell is.
The box itself barely fits this deck inside making putting the cards back in rather difficult at times, but it’s a sturdy box with a flat finish so fingerprints won’t ugly up the art on the front. It weighs a little over a pound with all the cards inside and fits two columns of cards.
Quality of the Arcane Spell Deck
Opening it for the first time the cards stuck together and had to be pulled apart in clumps which was odd but most likely a side effect of making them usable with dry erase markers and once pulled apart there were no issues. This is definitely something that you will run into if you get them as I have opened three different types of decks and they all behaved the same.
In the end the Arcane Spelldeck is a must have product in D&D 5th edition if you are planning on playing any user of arcane abilities or being the dungeon master. I give this product a 8 out of 10 for being very useful to players like myself. It’s also useful for people that just want to pay once up front instead of monthly subscriptions. There are reasons not to get these if you are using other applications online, but if that is not the style you like to play in I would pick one up before your next session as any wizard or the DM.