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RM4 House of Strahd (2e)
by Jay T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/22/2014 11:43:23
I was hoping to run this adventure, but was a little disappointed to see the poster map was missing. I have to shelve it until the is updated into the product. It is disappointing.

Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
RM4 House of Strahd (2e)
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D&D Basic Set Rulebook (B/X ed.) (Basic)
by Greg M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/21/2014 09:50:52
I bought this just for the sake of nostalgia. So many memories of pouring over this book with my brother and friends from school. I remember every drawing and almost can't stand to look at the new books--they don't have the same appeal to me. Anyway, poring over these rules is a fun way to spend a rainy day, whether you are 12 or 45 years old.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
D&D Basic Set Rulebook (B/X ed.) (Basic)
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Dragons of Faerûn (3.5)
by Jamey J. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/18/2014 17:59:43
The Faerun 3.5 is a great pdf and awesome add to D&D collection.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Dragons of Faerûn (3.5)
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D&D Basic Set Rulebook (B/X ed.) (Basic)
by James L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/15/2014 16:58:51
I came to the OSR with the creation of retroclones, namely Labyrinth Lord and Basic Fantasy RPG. When this PDF was made available again I purchased it immediately. The writing and organization are clear and clean; Moldvay has created an amazing edition of D&D that is timeless. I'm so glad this and the Cook/Marsh Expert books are available again, and it is well worth the purchase. While I still appreciate the retroclones, I'm sticking to the real thing for my gaming. My only wish is an option for a nice hardcover!

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
D&D Basic Set Rulebook (B/X ed.) (Basic)
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RM4 House of Strahd (2e)
by Stephen T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/15/2014 16:32:07
The adventure updates the original I6 to 2nd Ed. The scan of the book has a few wonky pages, and unfortunately the poster maps are missing. It would be difficult to run this adventure without the map of Castle Ravenloft!

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
RM4 House of Strahd (2e)
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From the Ashes (2e)
by Jeremy G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/15/2014 03:47:42
I've always liked FTA simply because there is adventure here and bucket loads of it. Both books are crammed with adventure hooks, high intrigue, mystery and wonder. The post war Greyhawk setting is a dangerous place but is somewhere that adventurous souls can really make a difference.

The new (2014) scans clock in at a mighty 144mb but the quality is greatly improved over the previous versions. The text is much clearer and easy to read and the maps are no longer cut up and spread over several pages of the PDF.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
From the Ashes (2e)
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GAZ5 The Elves of Alfheim (Basic)
by Darin S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/11/2014 15:23:31
One of the BEST in the Mystara GAZ series. Provides nice alternate rules for advancing elf characters (needed in the BECMI rules).

The scan for this release is top notch (including the large map).

Run, don't walk to the "add to cart" button on this one.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
GAZ5 The Elves of Alfheim (Basic)
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D&D Basic Set - DM's Rulebook (BECMI ed.) (Basic)
by Will H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/04/2014 13:36:22
Excellent OCR'd edition of the book with everything clean and well presented(including the illustrations).

1 Minor error:

note, in the 1st Group Adventure, the grey box flavor text on page 8 - #20 Entrance is actually a duplicate of room #30. And should read :

"The 20' wide doors open inward, and you see the remains of a bare 30' x 40' room. Empty doorways are in the middle of the east and west walls; the doors are missing. A normal door is in the middle of the north wall. The room contains some trash and rubble, but not enough to conceal a creature."

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
D&D Basic Set - DM's Rulebook (BECMI ed.) (Basic)
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ALQ1 Golden Voyages (2e)
by Peter C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/01/2014 11:36:04
I admit to being a "Voyages of Sinbad" nut. That helps make this one of my all-time favorite RPG supplaments.

The voyage begins with a quest for the "ultimate treasure". The authors then discuss different styles of role-playing, and what makes an "ultimate treasure" for each of the different type of players. I've used the player-type guidelines to help shape my games for decades.

The islands themselves are well thought out, but most important, the authors never forget that this is for a role-playing game, and so every island and location is rich in adventures appropriate to player characters. I used many of these islands and locations when running a fantasy earth campaign (using Runequest rules). They fit beautifully.

The physical information on arabian-style ships is thorough, and the rules for trading and the merchant life are nicely detailed, and well balanced (another rarity).

Okay - I'm a fan.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
ALQ1 Golden Voyages (2e)
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Al-Qadim: Arabian Adventures (2e)
by Jeb B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/25/2014 23:56:04
An excellent tome, with all the material and rules you need to run an Al-Qadim campaign (or any other Arabian Nights-themed campaign). Great at getting the cultural details across, too. This would have been worth $9.99, so it's a steal at $4.99, especially with the high-quality scan.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Al-Qadim: Arabian Adventures (2e)
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Faces of Evil: The Fiends (2e)
by Jeb B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/25/2014 23:52:23
An excellent Planescape sourcebook, a must-read for anyone with a campaign involving fiends. It's especially notable for its details on the lesser-known fiends, like the yugoloths and gehreleths. Had the scan quality been just a little bit better, I would have rated it higher, but it's still a good book.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Faces of Evil: The Fiends (2e)
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Guide to Hell (2e)
by Jeb B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/25/2014 23:43:17
One of the cooler products from the late 2E era, and very useful for planar campaigns (or any campaign involving devils). Unfortunately, the scan is adequate at best, which is why I can only give it four stars...

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Guide to Hell (2e)
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Manual of the Planes (1e)
by Brett D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/25/2014 10:58:42
The Planes were a common high-level adventure region for Dungeons and Dragons for several reasons. Tough opponents could exist, and the environments themselves could be fantastic and dangerous. This book covers the 'Great Wheel' or a detailed model of how various other places connect with the 'Prime Material Plane' or 'normal' world.

From a technical standpoint, this is a good-quality scan that is legible, clear, and has a good selection of features. Text is searchable, there's bookmarks for every section, etc.

As to content, this is a relatively ancient book, and it does show. This is not a 'reader' for all but the brave, as it's very dry and the text is somewhat repetitive, with each plane discussed receiving a standard format writeup containing how to survive there, random encounters, special places, etc. It's very dry, and definitely organized as a 'reference' int he sense that if a DM is planning a trip for his characters to The Abyss, there's a few pages covering all you need to know to make survival an interesting challenge.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Manual of the Planes (1e)
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Eberron Campaign Setting (3e)
by Nicolas C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/19/2014 01:33:54
The best campaign setting of dungeons and dragons (for me) available as a pdf! This setting has unique great aspects, as diplomatic rivalry, economic powerhouses challenging the might of nations, those seeking freedom from totalitarian lands ruled by beings from the land of dreams, transnational jurisdiction of houses with dragonmarked powers, universities vying for power and knowledge, intrigue in operra houses, transportation means as trains and airships, the legacy of a cruel and protracted war, uncertainty about the gods, monotheism, politheist and philosophical approaches to religion, influence of the planes on the land... You name it! I hope it is supported in dndnext and not just the Forgotten Realms, given the special, fun, intrigujng and unique elements of this setting, created by a very friendly guy, Keith Baker, with really fun ideas.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Eberron Campaign Setting (3e)
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Forbidden Lore (2e)
by Alexander L. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 03/17/2014 08:48:52
Originally published at: http://diehardgamefan.com/2014/03/17/tabletop-review-ravenlo-
ft-forbidden-lore-advanced-dungeons-dragons-second-edition/<-
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I’m really glad to see Forbidden Lore up on DNDclassics.com, as I wasn’t sure how they were going to pull this off. You see, the original Forbidden Lore boxed set from 1992 had items that wouldn’t necessarily work in a PDF format. You had an entire deck of Tarroka Cards (Ravenloft tarot cards) and a set of special dice for Romani inspired games. Obviously, these wouldn’t be included in their original form for a PDF version of the set. For those that want the original physical version, you can still pick it up on Ebay or Amazon for around forty bucks. However, for only ten dollars, DNDclassics is offering this electronic version, complete with print and play versions of the Tarroka cards, a shrunk down map, and the core five booklets that make up Forbidden Lore. Now, print and play is always buyer beware to me, because a lot of people think these products are a lot easier to pull off than they really are. If you’re new to the concept, know that you’re going to need a lot of ink, a printer that can handle card stock paper, to be very handy with scissors and have a lot of patience. Even then, your end product probably won’t be as good as the original set that came with Forbidden Lore back in 1992. If this sounds at all daunting to you, you might be better off getting one of the physical copies, as the cost for the print and play products in addition to this PDF purchase might set you back more than the price tag you will find from third party sellers.

So what is in Forbidden Lore? Well, it is primarily five 32-page booklets that further flesh out the Dark Domain. Let’s take a look at each book in alphabetical order.

Cryptic Allegiances: the Secret Societies of Ravenloft. This book covers six secret societies from across the Dark Domain, along with a two page introduction on what secret societies are. The Dark Delvers are a Lovecraft inspired group searching for something called the Hated Mother, which they believe is the source of creation. The Kargat are the secret police of the lich Azalin, which is made up of werewolves, vampires and other creatures of the night. In turn, they have a secret society of regular mortals called the Kargatane, who are essentially dupes seeking immortality without the price tag of undeath. The Ildi’thaan seek the Thirteen Texts of Thaan, which they believe will wrest control of Bluetspur from the hideous alien grasp of the Mind Flayers. The texts are also supposed to be able to unlock powerful psionic powers in anyone who reads them. The Ata-Bestaal are mortals who want to become animals, for they believe is it a simpler and purer way of life, free from the horrors Man inflicts upon itself. Unfortunately, these are not some happy druid fans, but people who think becoming a mongrelman from G’Henna or being inflicted with lycanthropy is a good thing. Suckers. Next up we have Adam’s Children, which is completely comprised of flesh golems seeking to become a race unto themselves, like dwarves or elves. Finally, we have the Keepers of the Black Feather, which number 150 strong. Their goal – to destroy Strahd Von Zarovich himself. This group is the only good aligned secret society in the collection, and it consists of mortals and wereravens.

Dark Recesses: Peering into the Depths of Madness. This is kind of a catch-all book. You have some errata and clarification for The Complete Psionics Handbook, which is an odd thing to find here. From there, you have a look at psionics in Ravenloft, along with some power changes that occur when a psionicist enters the Dark Domain. This is about half the book. Next up is a look at Madness Checks, which is a longer lasting (permanent) addition to the Fear and Horror checks. This is basically a D&D version of Call of Cthulhu‘s sanity rolls. You also get a look at sanitariums in Ravenloft and other ways madness can be cured. Finally, this book contains an appendix for Dark Sun characters and races from Athas. This is worth reading if you plan on bringing a Thri-Kreen or Half-Giant into Ravenloft. It also points out a Defiler is essentially doomed to constant Powers Checks and Templars lose their abilities entirely unless pledged to a domain lord. Eek. You’re also given a new domain pulled from Athas to help Dark Sun characters adapt to Ravenloft.

Nova Arcanum: The Necromancies of Strahd Von Zarovich. This book is a collection of new spells, magical items and the like for Ravenloft. Although it’s supposedly a tome by Strahd, there are Priesty/Clerical bits in here as well. The book also gives Ravenloft adaptations for spells from The Tome of Magic, along with its own twists on mage variants like Wild Mages, Elementalists, and so on.

Oaths of Evil: An Account of the Roads to Darkness. This book is an in-depth and detailed look at curses in Ravenloft along with a wide array of cursed objects. All of this was covered in the multiple versions of the core Ravenloft product, but this book is for the DMs that really want to focus on this concept.

The Waking Dream: Harbingers, Portents and Omens of the Vistani. This book simply talks about how to use the Tarokka deck, what each card means and so on. It also includes rules for the Dlkesha dice that are not included with the PDF version of this collection. You can print off the “stickers” though, although it takes a lot of work to make these work in a PDF format. At least you now have an unlimited supply, unlike with the boxed set, where there was no way to get extras. This book is really interesting, but only a fraction of players ever really used the Tarokka deck, as you really had to tailor an adventure around it rather than just let it come into play by happenstance.

So there you go – a quick overview of the five books in Forbidden Lore. To be honest, unless you are a Ravenloft completionist like myself, this isn’t a “must have” set by any means. Nova Arcanum is the only one DMs across the board will make use out of. Everything else is pretty niche and will only appeal to a slice of Ravenloft gamers, and even less will actually make use of them. The whole package is a pretty good deal for ten bucks though, and it’s one I can recommend to longtime fans of the campaign setting, if not to everyone. It’s great to see this once again available to all gamers, but I do wish there was a Print on Demand version for the Tarokka Deck for gamers that aren’t very good with the print and play option.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Forbidden Lore (2e)
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