Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Eve Free swag Stocking Stuffer #4 - Adventures Dark & Deep

Time for another OSR pick.  Adventures Dark & Deep (AD&D - follow?) is a "what if?" imagining of AD&D 2e.  It's pretty solid but still evolving.  Best of all?  It's free.

From the blurb:

"What if?"
Some of the most intriguing works of fiction have stemmed from those two simple words. What if Hitler had won World War 2? What if the Roman Empire had never fallen? What if John F. Kennedy had never been assassinated?
This work represents just such a "what if" scenario, if perhaps one with less weighty historical consequences. What if Gary Gygax had not left TSR in 1985, and had been allowed to continue developing the world's most famous fantasy role-playing game?

We will, unfortunately, never know the answer to that question, because he did leave TSR in that year, and others took over the job of designing the second (and subsequent) versions of the game. After that unfortunate episode, he was understandably reluctant to give any advice on how he would have carried the game forward.

However, he did leave behind hints as to the direction he would have taken the game. New character classes. Streamlined combat. New spells and magic items. Consolidated and re-worked monsters. We don't have many specifics, but we do have a fair number of "big picture" ideas. All of these have been taken as inspiration for ADVENTURES DARK AND DEEP™.
Bear in mind that the author has no special insight into Gygax's mind on this subject other than what he himself wrote publicly, and certainly the game should not be taken as having any sort of official stamp, either from his estate or the corporations that have taken the game in new directions. All that has been done is to collect the hints he did leave, use them as inspiration, and take off in a wholly different direction than that which happened "officially."

ADVENTURES DARK AND DEEP™ is not a "retro-clone." It does not set out to re-create a particular set of rules from decades past, as do some other games (not that there's anything amiss in doing so!). Rather, it is a new creation, unique unto itself, and does not attempt to recreate any set of rules that has gone before. The game and its materials are compatible with other games that are based on the original and Advanced versions of the world's most popular role-playing game.

The Players Manual includes everything a player needs; character creation rules, race and class descriptions, equipment, combat rules, and extensive rules on magic, with details on over 675 spells and cantrips.
NOTE: This is a free pdf version, and the rules are not in a final state. The game is currently in an open playtest, and your comments and input are more than welcome athttp://www.adventuresdarkanddeep.com.

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