Favorite AD&D Rulebook
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Poll: Favorite AD&D Rulebook

Deities & Demigods 8%       8%  [ 11 ]
Dungeon Masters Guide 40%       40%  [ 56 ]
Fiend Folio 4%       4%  [ 5 ]
Manual of the Planes 4%       4%  [ 6 ]
Monster Manual 13%       13%  [ 18 ]
Monster Manual II 0%       0%  [ 0 ]
Players Handbook 22%       22%  [ 30 ]
Unearthed Arcana 9%       9%  [ 13 ]
Total votes : 139

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Post Posted: Fri Jul 06, 2007 5:20 pm 
 

nyjastul69 wrote:I wouldn't usually sign in though, only when there was a poll, I like polls.  


Me too.  In fact, I need to check the compulsion to generate a poll at the door or I'll be voted off this island (excuse the horribly mixing of metaphors).


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Post Posted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 2:12 am 
 

Keith the Thief wrote:What's your favorite AD&D rulebook?


Most definitely Deities & Demi-Gods.

Why?


Well, just think of it: a book that actually applies stats to the very myths of the world! It's truly TSR's most brilliant physical piece of work, almost on par with TSR's non-physical concept of the Nine Alignments (and the Planes of Alignment system, which is, in truth, a sub-concept of the alignment system, not a mere "campaign milieu like dungeons, wilderness or the city). Just imagine-- now you could find out whether or not Odysseus was smarter than Leminkainen, you could tell whether or not Arthur (who killed 500 experienced warriors in a single night, after all) was a better fighter than Theseus or whether or not Math was a greater mage than Merlin was.

Also, it surpasses the other books because you don't need AD&D to understand it. If you know at least the very basics of fantasy gaming, easily learned by either consulting the internet or just asking any of the hundreds of thousands of people who know these concepts because said concepts are ingrained into our culture by now, you were all set.

If you know at least a capsule description of the classes (for instance, a "magic-user" is a man or woman who learns magic spells from a book, a "cleric" is a servant of the gods who is awarded healing powers for his service to them), and are aware of levels ("a 30th-level magic-user is WAY more powerful than an 12th-level magic-user"), you can use it for any system.

Is your favorite also the one you think is the best?
If not, which is the best?


Yes, I think it's the best, for the reasons given above. However, I consider the PLAYERS HANDBOOK a good second-best.

Which is the worst?


UNEARTHED ARCANA. I was never very keen on books that included both open for all PLAYERS sections and closed to players DM sections within the same cover. And that's just the start. Add the Chevalier (the supposed ARCHETYPUS of my favorite, the Paladin class?!), the barbarian, the totally out of control overpowered Drow race and the thief-acrobat, and the problems STILL not ending there, I'm just sorry for the trees who died to print that book.

Due to restrictions on the number of poll options, I was forced to exclude campaign-related books, like Forgotten Realms or Greyhawk Adventures.


If you're asking which of those setting books I liked best, it's definitely DRAGONLANCE ADVENTURES.
FORGOTTEN REALMS ADVENTURES was merely an update of Faerun after the Time of Troubles, and GREYHAWK introduced that horrible "avatar" concept to AD&D, because some people were just too stupid to understand that if an AD&D character gets powerful enough, he really *can* fight and maybe beat the very gods themselves-- after all, Achilles once wounded Aphrodite, a greater goddess once, didn't he? Hence, they introduced the "no god can be fought, you only fought his avatar" rule.[/u]

  

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Post Posted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 4:18 am 
 

Ankles wrote:Achilles once wounded Aphrodite, a greater goddess once, didn't he? Hence, they introduced the "no god can be fought, you only fought his avatar" rule.[/u]


I think it was Diomedes.


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Post Posted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 6:59 am 
 

FormCritic wrote:
I think it was Diomedes.


...And I totally misremembered that.  Thanks for correcting me.  :D

For somebody who just stated that DDG/LL is his favorite AD&D rulebook, I definitely need to reread the old myths.

  

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Post Posted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 7:40 am 
 

I answered DMG. Page for page it packs more gaming wisdom and entertaining tidbits (like the prostitute encounter table mentioned way back in the thread) than any other RPG book I can think of. I really like(d) Deities and Demigods, too, but it just wasn't all that useful. I would have to rank it my second favorite, if only because it introduced me to the wider world of fantasy fiction via the Melnibonean, Nehwon, and Cthulhu mythoi (I had only read ERB, Verne, and Tolkien prior to playing D&D).


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Post Posted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 7:44 am 
 

PHB. It was my first AD&D purchase. I retroactively went back and bought the MM. DMG came out later, so I am more inclined to look back at the PHB as the opening of the very large door.


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Post Posted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 7:54 am 
 

Ankles wrote:

...And I totally misremembered that.  Thanks for correcting me.  :D

For somebody who just stated that DDG/LL is his favorite AD&D rulebook, I definitely need to reread the old myths.




You could do worse than read this.



http://www.amazon.com/Meridian-Handbook ... 0452009278



I've an early hardback copy and as a early/mid teen, it was fantastic to read through the details of the myths.


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Post Posted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 8:05 am 
 

I went for the PHB as well, as I just loved the character choice as I started as a player way before DMing.

Although I do think the basic art in this and the DMG are timeless and would love to have the 'Dave, get the barbarian in the corner another drink, quick' and the backslapping artwork from page 101.


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Post Posted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 10:06 am 
 

Fiend Folio

It had a lot of weird creatures in there. But it also had the Death Knight and the Slaad, which at the time were totally awesome  :D


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Post Posted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 10:59 am 
 

FF     8O  8O  8O  8O  8O

Ok, now I see four votes for the FF. You are all banned from the site. :wink:

Have a nice day.  :lol:


And I could've bought these damn modules off the 1$ rack!!!

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Post Posted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 11:23 am 
 

Invincible Overlord wrote:Fiend Folio

It had a lot of weird creatures in there. But it also had the Death Knight and the Slaad, which at the time were totally awesome  :D


Don't forget the Githyanki and Githzerai, too. Those four creatures alone (all by Charles Stross, I believe, currently a hack scifi writer but back then a great teenage monster creator ;)), along with EGG's contributions, make the book a keeper, IMO.


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Post Posted: Sat Aug 14, 2010 10:09 pm 
 

Interesting to see this old topic get resurrected.

My opinion hasn't changed since 2007.
The Monster Manual is still my favorite by far.

Regarding Deities & Demigods, I definitely see the appeal,
and it's great to see Cthulhu and his boys stat-ified D&D-style,
but it wasn't really very useful to me as a DM.
We did not play high-level campaigns.

It's a good book to own as a collector's item, though,
even if it's not as rare as is often claimed on eBay.

It's OD&D predecessor was cool, too.

akp


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Post Posted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 3:25 am 
 

bbarsh wrote:FF     8O  8O  8O  8O  8O

Ok, now I see four votes for the FF. You are all banned from the site. :wink:

Have a nice day.  :lol:


Ahh, but the FF artwork was so different and new at the time. Githyanki and Son of Kyuss anyone?


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Post Posted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 8:22 am 
 

Great thread..this is a tough one for me. The DMG, PHB, MM and D&DG are all outstanding in their own right. I know the D&DG gets criticized a lot in game play, but I think it's very creative and the artwork in general is something that everyone put their best foot forward.

I can tell you the ones I don't feel are completely worthy ... definitely FF, UA, MM2 don't stack up to those four. And don't forget the DSG and the WSG.

I remember at the time FF came out, I thought it was a huge letdown (and I was in 4th/5th grade at the time :) ). There are some cool creatures in there (Githyankis for one), but there's way too many useless and unimaginative ones. I think there's a lot of uninspired work in there. I didn't realize at the time so many were compiled from previously published articles (since I live in the US obviously), but looking back I think a good deal of the creatures needed to be edited or re-thought-through from a creative standpoint. As much as I like some of the art, there's some real poor choices in there, too. The full page illustration of the Aleax guy swinging the sword in what looks like his chia-pet-style pubic hair is just downright inappropriate. They want to put in bare-breasted women as caryatid columns or whatever -- fine, more power to 'em! -- but that was a line that shouldn't have been crossed :lol:

MM2 I feel is far far worse. I don't even know where to begin...waste of time and money. I never liked the cover art on it either. This is the first time I felt completely ripped off from anything D&D.

I remember having a hard time in deciding whether to pick up the UA, DSG and the WSG. I flipped through them many times at Walden Books and kept thinking I should be buying them, especially UA, because "they're for D&D" but I just couldn't get over how useless I found them. UA had the biggest potential, but there's just something wrong about it. They should've just compiled them all together, I guess.

Lastly, MotP I do think is the most creative and interesting of this group of books. This one does stand out and doesn't deserve to be lumped in with these others. And I do really like the artwork within the book. I just never used the book much at all.

edit: I voted for D&DG just because I felt it wasn't getting enough attention in the polling :D

  

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Post Posted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 9:21 am 
 

misterspock wrote:The full page illustration of the Aleax guy swinging the sword in what looks like his chia-pet-style pubic hair is just downright inappropriate.


Pretty sure that isnt pubic hair.  :lol:   Looks more like the fur loincloth thingy that He-Man wears in the cartoon.

http://www.topnews.in/files/He-Man_0.jpg

Or the one that you sometimes see Conan sporting in the comics.

http://www.coverbrowser.com/image/savag ... an/2-1.jpg

The Fiend Folio fucking rocks.  The four people that chose it as their favorite need to come out of the closet already.  :wink:


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Post Posted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 8:14 pm 
 

misterspock wrote:I remember at the time FF came out, I thought it was a huge letdown (and I was in 4th/5th grade at the time :) ). There are some cool creatures in there (Githyankis for one), but there's way too many useless and unimaginative ones. I think there's a lot of uninspired work in there. I didn't realize at the time so many were compiled from previously published articles (since I live in the US obviously), but looking back I think a good deal of the creatures needed to be edited or re-thought-through from a creative standpoint. As much as I like some of the art, there's some real poor choices in there, too. :lol:


"Huge letdown" was the universal American reaction to the Fiend Folio.

The Fiend Folio was so intensely British that it struck many American purchasers as rather strange and possibly (for me) somewhat nauseating.  The artwork was typical of White Dwarf magazine at the time, which is where most of that book originated.  We were expecting Monster Manual II...but that was still years in the future.

My biggest beef with the Fiend Folio was that there were so many low hit dice monsters with essentially the same nuisance monster game niche.  How many dark creepers, jermlaine, meazles, meenlocks, gibberlings, bookas, mites, bullywugs, killmoulis, berbalangs, snyads, norkers and xvarts can a DM actually deploy in a campaign?  

Then there were the gadget monsters like the adherer, blindheim, quillan, terithran, triapheg, gambado, frost man, eye killer, screaming devilkin,  algoid, Pillsbury Doughboy, al-mi'raj, lava children, disenchanter, doombat, flind, crypt thing, assassin bug, carbuncle and a host of other tricksy and really stupid one-shot monsters designed so the DM can say "gotcha."   (Oooo, you tricked me!   :roll:)

Why do we need a protien polymorph?  Ever heard of the mimic or the doppleganger?

"Oh - and the devil dog - he somehow bites your throat out in spite of the fact that this violates the basic concepts of the rules."  :roll:

All of these were wasted space in the Fiend Folio.  (Of course, that did not stop me from deploying the osquip from time to time.  :twisted: )  

But a re-read of the Fiend Folio with adult eyes reveals a book full  of monsters that were highly imaginative and...some...highly useful.  In amongst the strangeness were the fog giant, mountain giant, the gith, the slaadi, firedrake, death knight, the daemons, scrarecrow, skeleton warrior, the oriental dragons, troll variants and others that were worth using.  I still go back to the Fiend Folio to find ideas for useful twists and monsters that break the routine.

Instead of one lizard king, how about 30 of them, all pissed off and lurking in the nearby swamp?

One other question about the Fiend Folio might be - why did they hide the best artwork in the appendices?  That's where you will find, for instance, Erol Otus and Jeff Dee lurking.

Oh, and the cover - the githyanki on the Fiend Folio cover looked wierd at the time, but it has become an iconic AD&D image.


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Post Posted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 9:40 pm 
 

FormCritic wrote:All of these were wasted space in the Fiend Folio.

Wasted space?  I'll give you wasted space:

Badger, Barracuda, Buffalo, Bull, Camel (wild), Cattle (wild), Dolphin, Flightless Bird, Herd Animal, Irish Deer, Jackal, Jaguar, Leopard, Lion, Mule, Stag, Tiger, Whale, and any other common animal that isnt giant sized or with some specific power that makes it uncommon.  Instead of giving each of these their own entry in the Monster Manual, there should have been a chart in one of the appendices either in the MM or the DMG.

FormCritic wrote:How many dark creepers, jermlaine, meazles, meenlocks, gibberlings, bookas, mites, bullywugs, killmoulis, berbalangs, snyads, norkers and xvarts can a DM actually deploy in a campaign?

I dunno but a few of these "nuisance monsters" can be pretty nasty in specific cases, especially with a good DM.  I recall just a few months ago my own D&D group met up with a large group of Meenlocks while exploring a large cavern.  Their tenacity, paralyzation attack, and dimension door capability was unbelievably annoying to our party.  We were lucky to pin the group of monsters at a choke point and kill them using a timely blast from a Wand of Steam.

FormCritic wrote:But a re-read of the Fiend Folio with adult eyes reveals a book full of monsters that were highly imaginative and...some...highly useful.

A few I find most "useful" are the Tentamort, Son of Kyuss, Adherer, Disenchanter, Grell, Penanggalan, and of course the Revenant.  Revenants are a pain in the ass.....just ask Killjoy.  :wink:   Try unleashing a Magnesium Spirit (groan) on a party and see how well they handle it.  I also like using critters like the Aarakocra and Kenku as helpful NPC's.  Maybe I just like birds.  :roll:

FormCritic wrote:One other question about the Fiend Folio might be - why did they hide the best artwork in the appendices?

See page 60.  Best piece in the entire book IMO.  I agree though....the artwork was quite a bit "different" than that other books and in my opinion is the main reason the book didnt go over as well.  I only say that because when I was 13 I thought it was kinda dorky looking.  So did my DM.  Ogremoch?  Seriously?  The Evil Prince of Elemental Earth and he looks like a claymation accident.  How about some pointy rocks, minerals, and gems mixed into the most powerful looking earth elemental ever seen?  :?

FormCritic wrote:Why do we need a protien polymorph?

We don't.  It is redundant.

FormCritic wrote:Oh, and the cover - the githyanki on the Fiend Folio cover looked wierd at the time, but it has become an iconic AD&D image.

You'd think they would work out more though.  Those nasty fat bags at their elbows are downright ugly.  I guess spending a lot of time weightless on the Astral Plane keeps them from being in tip top shape.  :P


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Post Posted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 10:09 pm 
 

Kingofpain89 wrote:I agree though....the artwork was quite a bit "different" than that other books and in my opinion is the main reason the book didnt go over as well.


Image

:lol:  :lol:  :lol:

It looks like he has a belt, yes, but that's the oddest looking "loin cloth" you've ever seen. 8O  :lol:  8O

  

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Post Posted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 10:39 pm 
 

misterspock wrote:It looks like he has a belt, yes, but that's the oddest looking "loin cloth" you've ever seen. 8O  :lol:  8O

As Belkar says ( http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0736.html ), " . . . everyone here could use a little less loin and a lot more cloth."

  


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Post Posted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 10:50 pm 
 

I really enjoyed the Fiend Folio. Noone liked the Aboleth? Makes for a nice addtion to the outer reaches of the underworld. I voted for the DMG because it was my first hardback and I spent so much time DM'ing and writing dungeons I had the thing memorized. The MM and PH were next and then FF. I used a ton a creatures from FF for my campaigns. They are all 10's to me.

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