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‘D&D Essentials Kit” Fantasy Grounds module review and Contest

The “D&D Essentials Kit” is a way for new players to learn how to play D&D. No previous knowledge of the Forgotten Realms setting or anything to do with the D&D5e rules is required. All that you need are 2 players. One as the DM and one as the player. In addition, there are NPCs that are known as “sidekicks” which may join the player’s party. While you only need 2 people to play, you can play with a DM and up to 5 players. In regards to “sidekicks,” there are 3 types.

  1. An Expert, which is a jack of all trades

  2. A Spellcaster, that will cast spells to harm your foes or heal you and your friends

  3. A Warrior, who is a martial companion who specializes in striking your foes or defending you and your allies

These “sidekicks” are available when there is a single player, and they are designed as NPCs that the DM can allow the player to choose from. The player will be controlling the “sidekick’s” actions as well as their own when in combat (similar to a companion a ranger might have or a familiar a wizard might have).

Purchase the “D&D Essentials Kit” mod from the Fantasy Grounds store at:

What is in the .mod? You will find two actual modules in the “D&D Essentials Kit. The first is the rulebook, which the DM should give each player access to read. In this mod are all the basic instructions on how to create your character and how to actually play. Think of it as a mini Player’s Handbook. There is also information as to using the information in Fantasy Grounds, for example, the order in which to create your character. The second book is”Dragon of Icespire Keep.” This is all the DM material on how to run the adventure, including the Story, NPCs, Items, Images, Parcels, Quests, Tables and more. Because this kit was created to be used in a physical environment, there are images of certain cards representing quests and of course maps, which are given in DM versions and Player versions. While the first starter set, “Lost Mine of Phandelver” focused more on the DM, the “D&D Essentials Kit” focuses more on the player. But, don’t think that the DM is left drifting in the breeze. There are detailed instructions to the DM on just how to run this adventure, so a brand new DM will be able to run it just as an experienced one (with some reading, of course). One other difference between the “D&D Essentials Kit” and “Lost Mine of Phandelver” is the fact that the LMoP set had pre-generated characters and no instruction on how to create your own characters, the DDEK has instructions and no characters, so you can create your own characters as you like.

The classes available to play include:

  1. Bard

  2. Cleric

  3. Fighter

  4. Rogue

  5. Wizard

The races available to play include:

  1. Dwarf

  2. Elf

  3. Halfling

  4. Human

So, there are some limitations, but seeing as this is an introductory set, I think it’s got everything you need to make a basic character. This adventure was made for levels 1 through 6, which also gives a good range of skills for each class.

Our contest has been completed and we have a winner. Congratulations to GeorgeOrr for winning the copy of the Fantasy Grounds mod version of the “D&D Essentials Kit!”

We at Fantasy Grounds College are fans of the Fantasy Grounds program, and advocate its use in playing D&D and other RPGs online. We are not affiliated or officially endorsed by SmiteWorks USA LLC or Fantasy Grounds.


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