I just thumbed through the rest of it for the first time
a little over an hour ago - while I was telling another player at the FLGS all what is in it.
There are many things that I liked and wanted to see in XGtE but didn't make the cut for one reason or another, and there are some tables that I don't have much use for, but - these things happen, and I still love this book. (Unlike one guy on FB 5e group who ranted about "...if I'd known my favorite thing didn't make it into the book, I wouldn't have bought it!"
"This is Your Life"
section has birth tables, which are very similar to AD&D's Unearthed Arcana & Oriental Adventures' Birth tables, so, I like these.
The Background/Class "Personal Decisions"
tables, "I became a _________ because...." are one-shot background fluffers, but tables like these are always inspirational, and can lead experienced players down paths never thought of, if tweaked just right.
The same with the "Life Events"
tables that break down into expanded tables, like "Boons", "Crime", "Punishment", "Supernatural Events", "Tragedies", "War", etc... these tables are full of ideas, and waiting to be tweaked!
made it into the book, but "Skill Feats" didn't, but we all know that feats come 'round fewer and far(er) between than certain other editions that had feats - so there are still PLENTY of new feats to choose from. And IMO, it just makes deciding which ones to take every 4 levels (or so, depending on actual class taken) even harder.
"Dungeon Master's Tools"
covers a lot of material that has been handled in previous editions, but, reiterated here makes these common sense rulings based on previous rules into common "RULES" for 5e.
and tool kits covers ground that I didn't really have the background from other specific editions to cover without much hand-waving "make it so" rulings, so these are nice to see. I like that each tool set or kit has applications to skills. Or, should I say that skills have applications to each set of kits and tool sets?
is another sore subject for me in 5e, specifically assigning CRs to newly minted monsters. I don't know if this section delves that much into assigning CR's accurately without much guessing and blind dart-board choosing that the DMG excelled at.
Monster Personalities and Relationships Tables
are going to be the closest thing to "Monster Morale" tables that I will probably ever see for 5e.
I like these. I can use & tweak these to fit.
tables arranged by terrain & levels 1-4, 5-10, 11-16, 17-20! Yippee! (Or... Breeyark!
is good, but I wish they'd also included "20 New Traps" by James Introcaso (I downloaded this from DM's Guild), and it has some dandy new traps in it! I can't tell without reading it thoroughly, but it looks like XGtE has expanded the UA version of "Traps Revisited".
looks much like the UA article of the same name, so I expect only a few cosmetic changes here.
Downtime, btw, is one of the things I was grateful to see in UA format, as it really helped to fill out the campaign play while my party spent months in a port city. Without having a concrete path to follow, or any 'random' strings of encounters, having the Downtime rules expanded on helped us all achieve many things in R&R, without fumbling through half-hearted roleplay events or (even worse) half-assed encounters/scenarios ad-libbed by yours truly!
"Awarding Magic Items"
is something I did not see in UA, (could mean I simply missed those articles...) but looks like a doable alternative to the DMG treasure/magic tables, which I hate. I created a set of AD&D1e treasure & magic tables, modelled after those very tables from the 1e DMG to replace the 5e DMG tables.
"Common Magic Items"
list of common magic items not appearing in the DMG! Treat!
"Magic Item Tables"
are not random generation tables, but charts that show items by minor/major, rarity, type, and if they require attunement! USEFUL
as all get-out!
Appendix A: Shared Campaigns
. I don't have an opinion on this yet, will have to do a closer read, and also for Appendix B: Character Names