Tim and I recently got a hold of Monster Manual III, Tieflings, and Deserts of Athas Dungeon Tiles. Here’s a short review for each.
Monster Manual III:
New stat block formats: Awesome. I can’t tell you how many times I forgot a cool ability because it was buried somewhere.
Lloth, and two Primordials: Awesome. I love reading level 30+ Solos.
New Paragon and Epic threats: Awesome
New Varieties of Gnolls, Giants, Devils, and other monster types? Awesome.
Some of the new monster entries are weird. There’s not much in the Heroic tier, if that’s you’re thing (but still more for Heroic than MM I had for Epic.) The Catastrophe Dragons are all elites, which is interesting- I want them to be more badass than normal dragons, but they have pretty cool effects. Eclavdra, Lolth’s exarch looks like kind of a pushover, but combos well if she’s in a fight with her patron.
Player’s Handbook Races: Tieflings
I am underwhelmed. And I play a Tiefling.
Lots of backgrounds and fluff ideas, some paragon paths and feats. It’s a spread of stuff though, so at the Heroic tier, you’ll only find a few feats you qualify for, and you may only want some of those. There’s 5 paragon paths. Other than the Turathi Hell-Kite and the Infernal Eye, I’m very underwhelmed- I prefer the Turathi Highborn to them in pretty much every situation. There’s a new Epic Destiny for imperialist tieflings. It’s kind of cool, but not as cool as Legendary Sovereign.
The book is cheap, at $10, but that’s basically 33 cents a page. The Player’s Handbook is $35 for 316 pages- about 11 cents a page.
Beserts of Athas
This has a bunch of cool desert tiles, and some desert/grassland transition tiles, and some desert/coast tiles. It also has two sheets of 3D tiles, which are an utter pain in the ass to assemble and store, and kind of cool in use.