Between 1977 & 1979, three rulebooks were combiled by Gary Gygax and his TSR team. These updated the D&D rules into better organised and more cohererent volumes. Over the next 10 years further volumes were released to revise and extend the published rules.


Relased under the phrase "Advanced Dungeon & Dragons", the rules were a complete re-write of the orginal and basic sets. They incorperated a number of changes to the systems and meant it became a stand alone game, rather than an extension of what had been previously published.

The three core rulebooks are the Monster Manual (1977), the Player's Handbook (1978), and the Dungeon Master's Guide (1979); later supplements included Deities & Demigods, Fiend Folio (another book of monsters produced semi-autonomously in the UK), Monster Manual II, Oriental Adventures and Unearthed Arcana (which took most of its additional playing information from Dragon magazine). This was followed by a fairly constant addition of more specific setting works and optional rule supplements.


In addition AD&D released a large number of adventures and games aids. These were alphabetically coded with the idea that these could be combined to make grand campaigns for players to enjoy. The "A" series proved one of the most popular with the players fighting slavers and uncovering more, grander plots.


The initail world of D&D was based on Gary Gygax's own campaign world of Greyhawk. Here the gand City of Greyhawk sat beside the super-dungoen "Castle Greyhawk". The many published scenarios were based in this world and gave it a sense of depth and purpose that no game had managed previously. However the scenarios were able to be picked up and placed in DM's own worlds and many of them had familiar ports and towns from favourite books.


Differences from Dungeons & Dragons


  • The game rules were reorganized across three hardcover rulebooks (the Player's Handbook, Dungeon Master's Guide, and Monster Manual) rather than one boxed set of three booklets (Men & Magic, Monsters & Treasure, and The Underworld and Wilderness Adventures), and a series of supplements.
  • Supplemental rules cut included hit locations.
  • The Chainmail-based combat system was completely abandoned.
  • Many details in class abilities were altered and clarified.
  • Character classes (bard, illusionist and ranger) that had only appeared in magazine publication were added to the game.
  • Alignment is further broken down into two polarities, "ethics" (lawful, neutral, or chaotic) and "morals" (good, neutral, or evil), so there are now nine alignments: lawful good, neutral good, chaotic good, lawful neutral, true neutral, chaotic neutral, lawful evil, neutral evil, and chaotic evil.
  • Character classes from original D&D supplemental material (assassin, druid, monk, paladin, and thief) are added in the core rules.[3]
  • Fighting-men are renamed "Fighters".
  • The relationship between race and class is changed. In the original Dungeons & Dragons, elf, dwarf, and hobbit were considered classes, where in Advanced Dungeons & Dragons the players select races and classes independently.


Dungeons of Dread


Dungeons of Dread is a hardcover collection of four classic, stand-alone Advanced Dungeons & Dragons adventure modules -- S1: Tomb of Horrors, S2: White Plume Mountain, S3: Expedition to the Barrier Peaks, and S4: The Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth -- complete with original black-and-white interior art.


Read the review here



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