101 Days of Advanced Dungeons and Dragons (First Edition)

JimLotFP

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[size=+2]Day 1[/size]

History and Ranting, Skip if Easily Bored
My mother was an artsy craftsy person in her youth. A few years after my brother was born she went back to work, and suddenly our family had income. Somehow, she discovered the minis commonly used with RPGs... so she encouraged me to get a few Endless Quest books and some minis so she could paint them.

On or just before my 8th birthday, December 7 1982, I upgraded from Endless Quest to Keep on the Borderlands and Village of Hommlet. All bought at my elementary school book sale!

Didn't have a clue at first. Used the Caves of Chaos map as a board like Monopoly or something, and me and my friends rolled dice, moved x squares, and somehow came up with ways to fight stuff that made use of those wild stat blocks and the beginning advice. Didn't know what to make of Hommlet since you obviously didn't go around the village squares killing those people.

I don't know exactly when the red box came out (I certainly didn't know it was anything all that new in 1983), but I got it, and then everything made so much more sense. I was the genius of the neighborhood so Basic didn't cut it for me... Advanced D&D had big books with hard covers! Woooo!

The next ten years were gaming heaven. Most weekends. Sometimes after school Friday I'd go to a friend's house and would game until it was time to go home to bed Sunday night. Even into high school, spring break would just be nine days straight of D&D. When 2E came out in 1989, we adopted it and kept on moving without missing a beat.

Yeah, I branched out into other games. GURPS, Champions, Marvel FASERIP, Bureau 13, Justifiers, Star Frontiers... a bunch of stuff. Some was fun. Many were "better games". But D&D was better gaming because the people I gamed with were more into the spirit of things. I really wish more had been comic book fans for those games darnit...

Anyway, my going off to college in late 1992 coincided with D&D falling out of favor and Vampire being the next big thing... but I didn't care for Anne Rice or the whole goth thing and I wanted D&D damn it... but it seemed like it all dried up. So gaming was very sporadic after that for me.

In 2003 I was desperate. Going to the gaming store to see what was "in" really depressed me. So I started working on my own game. hah. Not so successful. In May 2004 the decision was made that I was going to Finland. That was a comedy of delays and bureaucracy but I moved back in with the family in the meantime.

Summer of 2005 I decided I was going to game! I bought pdfs of the 3 AD&D core books. I also bought a shitload of Hackmaster in a nostalgic binge. Never did get any game going.

As 2006 came in (in Finland finally!), I realized I hadn't actually gamed for two years at this point! WTF? Stupid to continue to design my own thing if I'm not involved in the pastime! But what to do? I had bought all this Hackmaster stuff and kept up with all sorts of weird things lately since I was itching to game. I thought "What am I doing? I need the real thing!"(And going to Dragonsfoot and seeing the old TSR guys, including Gygax, and doing Q&A in the forums made me ache for good times past...) So I'm unloading a bunch of stuff (see Sales and Auction forum!), and I also went Ebay hunting for AD&D 1E stuff. (for the record, the stuff I am keeping: The 4 Sorceror books, Dogs in the Vineyard, Bureau 13, and Over the Edge)
End Irrelevance

2 Players Handbooks, a Dungeon Master's Guide (and screen), Unearthed Arcana, Monster Manual, Monster Manual II, and Fiend Folio are on the way. So are the Wilderness Survival Guide and Dungeoneers Survival Guide that I still had for some reason in Florida that my mother is sending along. I also splurged on that Gygaxian Fantasy box set (wife'll kill me for that one if I don't sell the old stuff, haha). If you're going to go, go all the way. It's how I accumulate most of my junk. haha!

I've made up a flyer for the game. We go to town Thursday, we'll hit the copy shop, and then put these up on all the noticeboards that seem to be inside every grocery store in town here. :D

I've also got a campaign site in progress, which I guess needs to be finished by the end of the week.

I haven't DM'd AD&D in several years, not 1E since 1989. I don't know if any players I get will have any experience or not. It will be a glorious mess. :D

For the setting, I'm using this continent I first started making in 89 or 90 after the 2nd edition came out. A lot of towns and such need renaming, but the history and all that jazz is tight. The smallest scale maps took up my mother's entire garage when laid out together!

This will be by the book. I've made some notes where this won't be the case, but I want this to be a total Gygaxian AD&D experience. I am most giddy about using the Weapon vs AC Types table for the first time ever. It suddenly dawned on me that it's the only way to make most of the weapons have any point to them at all.

I've also been reading the spells section. That was always a weakness of mine: Planning enemy magic-users to use at full capability.

Specifically for the campaign, we'll be in Stone Hold, a mountain kingdom. If I'm rusty and the players might not know shit from shinola, best to make it so travel routes are fairly obvious at first.

PCs will be young natives who find reason to adventure. Everyone starts at first level.

There will be a campaign plot that the characters will uncover. I've already picked out the villain, and super-hero games have taught me to tailor the plot to the villain for maximum effect. So after deciding the villain, I started to put together all of the big pieces so I know how it all fits, why it fits, and why the PCs would get involved, when it's time. Some dungeon crawls, some exploring, some political/personal plots. A little of everything. D&D has never been about "kick down the door, kill the monster, and take its stuff" for me, and it will not start being that way now. Logic will rule in running this campaign. Not "realism", but "logic."

But that's for later.

When I get a player or three, the first gaming session will be general chitchatting about gaming and character creation, and then some "actual play" time. The first adventure will be simple, a lead-in, and a de-ruster for me, a primer for the players (with my luck they'll have all been playing AD&D since 1977 without stopping).

I am hyper in doing this. Not just "hoping" to game, not just putting weak feelers out to game, but actually doing the work to have a working game going- Planning a campaign, working on actual adventures, and will spend a day flyering the town looking for real live players.

On this, Day One of my 101 Days of AD&D, I completed the Players Map of the campaign area.

Every day possible for the next 100, I will update my activities and my campaign, concentrating solely on AD&D 1E. Even if I don't snag a single player, I will be active planning and working on the campaign world and working in some way on finding players. And those posts will be a lot shorter than this one.

I'd like feedback on... well, everything. Especially the campaign website and whatever by-the-book rules I need to beware of and might need to take a closer look at.
 

Hakwood

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I love AD&D 1e. Played it passionately back in the day ("the day" being 1982; I was 11 years old) even though we ignored 85% of the rules. But that, too, was an old school tradition. ;)

I'm really going to enjoy this thread. I'll offer whatever advice or encouragement I can.

Oh, and if you actually use any of the optional rules in the Dungeoneer's Survival Guide or Wildnerness Survival Guide, I will personally pay you $1,000,000. :D ;) Those books always fell into the "fun to read, but impossible to use" category for me.

I'm looking forward to your 101 days. Good luck!


Hakwood

P.S. As a fellow 101-day gamer who only lasted 70 days, one word of caution: don't do too much too fast. Burnout lies that way.
 

JimLotFP

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Hakwood said:
Oh, and if you actually use any of the optional rules in the Dungeoneer's Survival Guide or Wildnerness Survival Guide, I will personally pay you $1,000,000. :D ;) Those books always fell into the "fun to read, but impossible to use" category for me.
Hmm. Maybe I should do it differently:

By the Book unless otherwise noted: PHB, DMG

All else are considered not to be used unless otherwise noted. DSG is brilliant inspiration for creating long, involved caverns though. :D
 

BMonroe

Registered User
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Your post makes me nostalgic for some good old 1E goodness. I tried 3.x over the last few years, but just couldn't get into it. I'm looking at picking up Castles & Crusades, though, which might be just what I've been looking for...
 

JimLotFP

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zomben said:
Your post makes me nostalgic for some good old 1E goodness.
The more I think about it, the more I don't want to do this as a nostalgia trip.

Yes, past experiences with AD&D made me choose it as my game to move forward with.

But I when play begins, I want to enjoy it for what's happening in-game NOW, not because it reminds me of the fun I had 20 years ago.

I believe AD&D is a game fully capable of delivering that.
 

Particle_Man

White Knight
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By the book is cool, but are you using the MM, or going by monster descriptions in the DMG?

Also are you using stuff in the appendices of the phb? (psionics, bard)
 

BMonroe

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JimLotFP said:
The more I think about it, the more I don't want to do this as a nostalgia trip.

Yes, past experiences with AD&D made me choose it as my game to move forward with.

But I when play begins, I want to enjoy it for what's happening in-game NOW, not because it reminds me of the fun I had 20 years ago.

I believe AD&D is a game fully capable of delivering that.
I think you're absolutely right. Hell, I would imagine just about everyone on this board had a shitload of fun with 1e AD&D at one point or another. It would be really ineresting to go back and play it just for the fun of it.

I think with what I've learned about gaming over the years, I could run a gread AD&D game, with barely changing the rules at all. Only problem is that I can't imagine most of my players would be interested. Ah well...
 
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