The Midgard Heroes Handbook is a Mess (Part 3: Formatting Problems and Missing References)

To round out this examination I thought I’d move on to talking about all the formatting and missing references I found with this book.

Part One of this examination can be found here, while Part Two can be found here.

Formatting Problems

  • Not having an index really makes using the physical copy of this product difficult when things are referenced but no page number is given for them. For instance, the chaos magic surge table.
  • Including the new magic schools next to the spell names (in the spell lists) makes for some really crowded and hard to read spell lists.
  • There are no chapter numbers at the top or bottom of most pages even though they do say what the chapter name is. So if something references “chapter 4” it’s just that extra bit of work to figure out what chapter is what.
  • The weapon options aren’t listed out in the same way as in the players handbook (simple melee, simple ranged, martial melee, martial ranged). Instead they are broken down by categories like swords, polearms, thrown, etc. This can make trying to find a specific weapon in them just that bit more work. Particularly when you don’t know that thrown weapons are a category.
  • There are a few bizarre formatting decisions in this book like putting the Gods of Midgard chart midway through the Beer Domain description. This isn’t as much of an issue if you own the physical copy, because they see the two pages back to back, but on the digital copy this means you have to scroll through a whole page just to get to the rest of the subclass. 
    • Another example of this is with the Blade of my Brother spell. They inserted a graphic that meant that the last two lines of the spell gets shoved to the next page. Clearly they should have just had a slightly smaller graphic to accommodate this text.
  • This is a very minor one, but there is very inconsistent formatting when it comes to the new spell tradition lists. It’s difficult to describe this in text. But just go through the Divine (and especially the Arcane Characters) sections and notice how each of the new schools gets a different format (and different information) describing what spells each of the caster classes get from the new spell school. Kobold Press essentially took six different approaches to how to list spells.

Missing References

  • College of Entropy bard refers to a chaos magic surge but then doesn’t state where this is beyond eventually stating that it is somewhere in chapter 4 (turns out its pages 86 to 87 but anyone without access to the PDF and Ctrl+F is pretty much left to figure this out on their own for no good reason).
  • The cat domain’s 17th level ability doesn’t state what page or what official book you can find “Player Characters as Lycanthropes” on even though it references it. It’s in the monster manual on page 207.
  • With the void domain they don’t state where you can find the short-term madness table. It’s actually on page 259 of the Dungeon Masters Guide.
  • With the entropy wizard there is no damage type table provided in the book anywhere (which is relevant for the entropy wizard as well as a handful of their new spells). So you will have to work with your DM to make a table of your own.
  • Many of the chaos spells also refer to the chaos surge table but don’t state where it can be found (pages 86 to 87). This is a spell school that bards, sorcerers, and wizards have access to, but sorcerers aren’t going to have any reference that can point them towards this. It’s more of an issue if you just own the hardcover.
  • The Instant Siege Weapon spell it states “see the 5th edition rules for details” without referring to where this is. I assume (although its not clear within the spells writing) that this was in reference to the stats for siege weapons. These can be found on page 255 of the dungeon masters guide.
  • The soulforging spell isn’t mentioned under either the clockwork spell list for wizards, or in the back of the book under all wizard spells. It just gets a reference in the cleric and race sections and that is it. Considering that this is supposed to be a core part of the clockwork school this seems like a notable oversight.
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