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Arcane Power: A 4th Edition D&d Supplement (Dungeons & Dragons) Hardcover – 21 Apr 2009

3 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Wizards of the Coast; 4th Edition edition (21 April 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786949570
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786949571
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 1.3 x 28.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 535,456 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By L. MacLean on 5 July 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A great tool for anyone who plays an arcane class, Arcane Power (4th edition) gives new spells and feats for arcane powers,as well as paragon paths and epic destinies.

A feature of this book I find particularly interesting is that it allows any arcane character to obtain a familiar, with the Arcane Familiar feat. This is a spirit that takes the form of a tiny animal or monster, granting in-game benefits, as well as a few limited role-playing opportunities (most familiars can only communicate verbally with their master)

Arcane Power also discusses arcane classes more in depth: explaining what it might actually mean when your warlock curses someone or your bard sings a song of valour.

I would recommend this book as value for money, and I think any D&D player would enjoy it.

Note: This review is under my mother's name, as the book was ordered under her account.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is one of the better 'Power' splatbooks as it gives a nice variety of options and builds which aren't covered in their respective handbooks. It also has the rules for familiars which were sorely missing from the PHB/PHB2. Although I have yet to use it myself I find it is more useful in general than Martial Power
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3 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Peter Stiles on 18 July 2009
Format: Hardcover
I'm unsure of the use of this.
Its supposedly nice to see a huge bunch of new powers, but they can seem much of a muchness - similar to the PHB powers except in name.

I feel that good-old-second-edition's spells had much more variety of use and impact than 4th editions - the old "Tome of Magic" from 2E was much more fun for mages than this is.

Familiars seem a nice touch, but my players took a read and decided that the Wizard didn't need one. I'm sure many players will want their owl on their shoulder, just not mine.

To me and my players, not an essential purchase.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 30 reviews
85 of 87 people found the following review helpful
A useful expansion if you like 4e 22 April 2009
By Scott Schimmel - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Arcane Power is a sourcebook for 4th edition Dungeons & Dragons that offers more powers, feats, paragon paths, and other options for the arcane classes: bards, sorcerers, swordmages, warlocks, and wizards. It is not a stand-alone book; it builds on what's presented in the Player's Handbook and Player's Handbook 2.

Arcane Power is 180 pages, and the production values seem pretty good. The font, layout, and general format is very close to that of the core rulebooks, keeping things consistent.

The content is laid out in an orderly and logical fashion: there's one chapter dedicated to each of the five classes, plus a sixth chapter that deals with feats, epic destinies, rituals, and familiars suited to all arcane characters.

Each of the class chapters contains one to two new build options. The new sorcerer builds, for example, are the Storm Mage and the Cosmic Mage, which draw on the power of tempests and of the cosmic cycles of the sun, moon, and stars, respectively. Each chapter contains a pretty broad assortment of new powers, usually between 4 and 6 of each level.

Each also contains a handful new paragon paths suited to its class. The quality of these varies, unfortunately. Many of them are somewhat bland and workmanlike (although they're rarely actively bad). A few, like the warlock's Entrancing Mystic, rise above the rest, providing flavorful and inspiring options.

The sixth chapter contains nine epic destinies, which likewise vary in quality. It also contains numerous feats across all character levels, 19 new rituals, and a handful of magical tomes to add to your game. Finally, it contains the fourth-edition rules for familiars, which any arcane character can acquire and later enhance by spending feats. The rules make familiars useful and beneficial without making them overpowered/'required' or overly complicated, which is a pretty hard line to toe.

For the most part, the content lives up to its promises. The design seems pretty solid, and the book does add some much-needed options. There is a little bit of "power creep" present, although the main beneficiaries are the warlock and wizard classes, which are widely seen as relatively weaker, so this might balance out.

The biggest weakness is the lack of any index, combined with a minimal table of contents. There's also the fact that the Swordmage class was presented originally in a Forgotten Realms book, and is not reprinted here; only the new powers are present. It's also not in either of the Player's Handbooks, so that chapter will be mostly useless to those who, like me, do not intend to buy the FR book. (Personally, I find the material for the other classes is sufficient to make up for that, though.)

Overall, I'm pretty happy with this book. The content needs a little vetting, but that's no different from similar books for earlier editions of the game, and it meets my expectations. The quality here remains pretty high. If you don't like the fourth edition, nothing in this book is going to change your mind. If you do, you'll find some interesting toys to play with. In many ways, it's more of the same -- it doesn't change the game, it just expands upon it.
31 of 31 people found the following review helpful
Revivng some old ideas 23 April 2009
By Meanwhile - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I don't have much to add that Scott Schimmel hasn't already covered, but I thought I'd mention a couple of neat things that show up in Arcane Power.

For instance, you can finally make an Illusionist. It is now a full build within the Wizard class, complete with its own implement mastery. You can either dabble in a few illusion spells or, if you want, take nothing but illusion powers from level 1 to 29.

Another pre-4E class with a new 4E rendition is the Binder from the 3E Tome of Magic. Although not mentioned explicitly, this is obviously where they drew inspiration for the new Vestige Pact for Warlocks. The Warlock version's mechanics are not identical to the Binder's, but surprisingly similar, given the vastly different nature of 4E combat. The feel of the thing is very much the same.

Furthermore, we see the return of numerous spells we knew and loved in previous editions, such as Glitterdust and Grease. Obviously they are not exactly the same as they were before, but I think it's kind of cool that they are back.

Certainly, not all of the new material is a rehash of the days of yore, but old-school gamers who didn't run screaming from the new edition will probably enjoy the experience of browsing the new material and seeing some new takes on familiar concepts.
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Playing an Arcane Character? Then buy the freaking book. 8 May 2009
By Matthew Wisner - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Attention all bards, sorcerers, swordmages, warlocks, and wizards:
Your potential awesomeness has just doubled.

Just when you thought casting fireballs and dominating wills couldn't be anymore fun, they come with this to show you that yes, you have just scratched the top of the iceberg.

Bards are no longer only healers and enablers, they can also twist fate to their will by tearing down enemies and powering allies at the same time.

Sorcerers are no longer limited to Draconic and Chaotic magic. Now the power of storms and of the cosmos itself is in their grasp.

The swordmage can now not only kill, but capture their enemies alive with magical ease.

And what's this? Warlocks with healing and aiding powers? Can it be? Indeed, all things are possible.

As for the wizard, how does it feel to be able to summon powerful monsters out of thin air, or better yet to create the illusion that they have always been there? All I can say, is that it's about freaking time.

With loads of new paragon paths and epic destiny options, it might be time to rethink you character.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Excellent Expansion 2 Jun. 2009
By Mike Karkabe-Olson - Published on
Format: Hardcover
The book expands on the existing spell repertoire of existing arcane casters. It also adds several interesting new builds and an extensive list of new feats (obviously geared toward arcane users). Illusionist and summoning spells have also been added. The simplicity in how they are incorporated is perfect -- adding interesting options but without overpowering the game or slowing it down. Gone are the days of one character taking an hour or more to conduct a round of combat while everyone else twiddles their thumbs, waiting for a host of summoned creatures to complete actions... yet, the summoned creatures remain quite viable and useful and interesting (without being overpowering). I also applaud the way in which familiars have been added. They add an interesting element to the game (both in and out of battle) without the game becoming slowed down or unbalanced. Way to go WOC!
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
They fixed the Wizard 17 May 2009
By M. Black - Published on
Format: Hardcover
A must have for every gaming group! If you like playing the wizard but were disappointed in the fact that the one controller in the first players handbook couldn't control, well now they can. This book is full of new powers that make you have to choose between multiple good powers per lvl and don't leave many easy choices which makes for far better play and diversity in groups. There are also some new must have feats for the arcane classes and some new paths for said classes.

All in all a book well worth the money and a great addition to any group.
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