Last May, I wrote about Hamund’s Harvesting Handbook and it became quite a hit for this site and the Handbook itself has since become a Mithral Best Seller. Now creator Jeffrey Yang of Drifters Game Workshop has returned with a follow up and this time Hamund is after the monsters in Volo’s Guide to Monsters. It’s time to put aside dragonburgers (at least for this book) and explore some more exotic harvesting opportunities in your 5E campaigns.
Hamund’s Harvesting Handbook: Volume 2
Writer: Drifters Game Workshop (Jeffrey Yang…@DriftersGameWorkshop)
Publisher: DMs Guild
Product Length: 116 pages
As I already mentioned, this Handbook focuses on monsters from Volo’s so in that regard, everything is fresh and new. Yang doesn’t spend anytime on harvesting meat and other edibles in this one. Instead he has left that for the DM to adjudicate on his or her own. That’s for the best. Cutting flesh from a flesh golem shouldn’t be too hard. I’d be more concerned with whoever would willingly eat such flesh than I would harvesting it. But I digress. The book!
This book follows the same format as the original. And why shouldn’t it? It’s written from a mostly first-person perspective of Hamund (the harvester?) himself. The “Crafting” chapter is largely the same as the first version as well but this one is tweaked just a bit and completely updated with new craftable items. While the original gave us a new background and new feats, Volume 2 gives us new spells that are really useful for a harvester. The updated Helpers are nice and engaging characters too.
Also included in Volume 2 that was not in the first handbook is a robust job board that fits thematically with harvesting. Now it doesn’t have to be for the wily PC who likes to hoard things. Side quests for additional gold are easily pursued with these job notices whose CR ranks from less than 1 all the way up to 23, if you feel up to harvesting some Kraken hearts.
My Reaction and Final Thoughts
For some, there is a strong morality in not letting anything go to waste. Ignoring the fact that what we don’t use from the carcasses goes to feed scavengers (gelatinous cubes gotta eat too!), insects, fungi, and bacteria, I contend we do have a responsibility to be good stewards. It’s irresponsible to not harvest these parts and put them to good use if we can. If someone were to slay me in battle I would hope they’d consider my femur for a good sword handle. If they wore my face like a mask…might be weird, but okay.
As I was reading Volume 2 I had an epiphany. I realized that one of the reasons I enjoy it so much is it reminds me of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. I tend to be a completionist by habit which means the countless hours I’ve spent on harvesting bokoblin guts and chuchu jellies and keese wings haven’t exactly helped me in the main quest. Nonetheless, I have a blast gathering these things and crafting useful (and sometimes not so useful) items. I realize I may never finish the game (especially since I have already bought Link’s Awakening) but the point is to have fun, right? You’re sure to have a blast with Hamund’s Harvesting Handbook: Volume 2.
- follows the same flow as the original (good opportunity to make a compendium later)
- the inclusion of the job board is brilliant
- new spells for harvesters
- the pertinent, reusable information from the first handbook is repeated here so you don’t have to own the first one to use this one
- if you don’t use Volo’s Guide to Monsters, you won’t get much from this handbook
- the Table of Contents is hyperlinked, but there are no bookmarks in the PDF
A review copy was provided by the creator.