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34

Maintaining the AD&D Feel If you want to maintain the AD&D feel of this module you have to keep the following in mind: it's a death-trap. I have played it, I have DMed it and I have spoken to many people who fondly remember the way their characters died in it; I have never spoken to anyone who finished it although I and a few others have escaped ...


23

Strahd's name is of generic Eastern European inspiration. He rules Barovia, his brother is Sergei, the woman in their love triangle is Tatyana — all extremely Eastern European names by the standards of Midwest America in the late 80s. So, there are some points of commonality among Eastern European languages — or, more to the point, points of commonality in ...


22

Hit dice for monsters in both editions of AD&D are almost always d8s, so it's normal for monster stats to say things like “6 HD”, “3 HD + 4”, or “½ HD” with no further explanation given. From the Monster Manual introduction where how to read statistics is explained: HIT DICE indicates the parameters of the number of hit points a creature can ...


22

Advanced Dungeons & Dragons is from 1979*. It's not related to Dungeons & Dragons from 2014 (a.k.a D&D 5th edition), except that it's an ancestor of it. Put another way: AD&D is the 1st edition relative to which D&D (2014) is counted as the 5th edition. The reason it was called “Advanced” back in 1979 is because it was compared to the ...


17

Both! The Dungeon Master's Guide (1979) for Advanced Dungeons and Dragons says that All magic swords receive their stated bonus both for purposes of hitting (as a bonus to the "to hit" die) and for damage (as +1, +2, +3, etc. addition to hit points of damage scored). (165) Thus, consider a fighter armed with a longsword +1, +2 vs. magic-using and ...


16

Subduing in 1st Edition In AD&D (1st Edition), the rules for subduing a dragon were found in the Monster Manual I, under the DRAGON entry: Subduing a Dragon: An attack on a dragon to subdue, and thus capture it may be opted for if such intent is announced in advance of the combat. Silver, gold, chromatic and platinum dragons cannot be subdued. ...


11

For the most part, it’s the former: AD&D groups often had six, eight, or more people playing. When those adventures were written, tabletop gaming, and AD&D in particular, were extremely popular. You could find RPG clubs just about anywhere, and when the clubs met it was not uncommon to have ten gamers to a table. And remember, when they say 6 to 8 ...


11

For both scenarios, it helped me to think about what would happen if the druid cast the Wall in the open, and then walked towards a stone wall. The first image/scenario has no precedent for occurring. The Wall can be a sheet or a ring, not an amorphous blob, at least without some other influence. If the tunnel walls somehow repelled magic without negating ...


10

I'm assuming that "Count Strahd von Zarovich" is supposed to be a German noble name or of German origin, because of the dark and gothic setting and the fact that "von" was a German nobility title in earlier times and still exists in many older German names. Strahd is pronounced with a German long "a" (which would probably be like an English short "a"). Note ...


10

The Monster Manual II (1982) phoenix can, in fact, die normally from, for instance, attacks by +3 or better magic weapons or, instead, can suicide in "a double-strength (40th level) combination of fire storm (2" high × 5" wide × 8" deep) and incendiary cloud.... This destroys the phoenix but leaves a gem-like egg behind from which a new phoenix will arise ...


9

The wall of fire should be a ring around the party. It shouldn't go into "secret" rooms that you are unaware of, only places that you know about. I would GM it the second way. You really do not want to get into distorting spell effect areas with natural terrain as that will be a constant problem and exploit.


8

Chris Perkins adapted Tomb of Horrors for D&D Next in Dungeon magazine, issue 213. D&D Next was sort of the "beta version" of fifth edition, but it should be very usable.


8

Historically, chainshot (the technical term) was very much less effective against people than grapeshot (canister of musket balls) or even than roundshot (single ball) precisely because the latter tore up large impaling splinters, and indirect casulaties were heavier than direct. Chainshot was normally fired at masts and sails, in the hope of bringing down ...


8

Yes, you can run Isle of Dread as an AD&D module as-is, but there will be occasional hiccups. With only a few modifications (to the module), however, it can run as smooth as if it were originally written for AD&D. I played through Isle of Dread in a 2e AD&D game as a player. I have asked the DM of that game for his opinion, as well as read ...


8

The rolton comes from the various incarnations of the MMORPG Gemstone video game, dating back at least to 1988. A rolton is apparently a sheep-like opponent that can be skinned for its somewhat valuable pelt. The Gemstone wiki describes a rolton as covered with a dirty, matted, disgusting-looking grey pelt that might once have been white and is still ...


7

AD&D was never that analytical - almost everything in it are rules of thumb and judgement calls.; there are virtually no formulas like you think there should be. What the book is saying is if a thing is difficult to carry because it is heavy then use its weight. If it is difficult to carry because it is big assign it a value based on what you think an ...


7

AD&D was and is, exactly, Advanced Dungeons and Dragons: a successful attempt by the game's author to improve and expand upon the original Dungeons and Dragons (1973-1975 vintage) during the game's first decade. AD&D's core books were published in 1977-1979. A parallel revised (and less complex) version, Basic Dungeons and Dragons, was followed ...


7

There's no need to house rule this — you just need to start enforcing its restrictions. Allow me to draw your attention to its area of effect: 4 square″ + 1″ square/level (Aside, this is taken from PHB page 95, since the Illusionist version of the spell has different range and area of effect.) These are table inches, which we could convert to ...


7

You calculated it correctly per 1e AD&D with Unearthed Arcana Supplement Using the armor tables from AD&D (First Edition) that includes Full Plate Armor, the table on page 26 of Unearthed Arcana (TSR, 1985) shows the following: Full Plate Armor and Shield = Armor Class 0. The +1 to your shield improves your Armor Class to -1. The Dexterity of ...


7

There's a document on Goblin Punch (You can find it here) that explains the hit die for monsters on the site is a d8: Monsters have 1 HD for every level they possess. This is a d8 hit die, so a level 3 monster has 3d8 HP.


6

AD&D 2nd edition, which is largely compatible with AD&D 1st edition, has an optional way to customise races in Player's Option: Skills & Powers. The system breaks down the traditional list of abilities a race grants and assigns them values in Character Points. A character gets a certain number of CP to purchase racial abilities, choosing from ...


6

Defeating doesn't have to mean killing (even though it often ends up that way). If you can defeat a monster in a non-lethal way, then you still get XP for it.


6

Yes, it's possible, and it's alluded to in the Monster Manual. If you dig deep enough, a theoretical high of 11th for a Dwarven cleric, based on a City Encounter, might be the cap, but the standard cap of 8th level from Table II in the PHB is more supportable. Rules-as-Written Outside of Unearthed Arcana, there's not another table or list like the one ...


5

German pronunciation (must be German because of the von which is added, in this case to a Slavic patronymic, to denote nobility): /ʃtʀɑːt fɔn tsaʀovɪtʃ/ (see the IPA and its help for English on Wikipedia). Zarovich is either an alternative spelling or a romanization from a different language of the Russian term Tsarevich (Царе́вич, "son of the tsar").


5

This answer is based off actual experience (I asked this exact question in middle school). I am basing this off of my German teacher's pronunciation whenever I showed her the module in 7th grade (1993) (yes, I was in 7th grade when I bought that box set - and in 8th grade when I bought I, Strahd. She said this: Strodd fon Tsar Oh Vichks (She was a dual ...


5

To convert a module you'll need the AD&D Module and 5e books. Especially the bestiary. A big part of converting a module from a prior edition to a future edition has to do with the monsters that populate the dungeon, so you'll need your AD&D bestiary, and any monster tables for 5th edition so you can create the encounter tables necessary to run the ...


5

DM Rulings and 1e AD&D Rules Combine for a reasonable outcome This answer requires a caveat: there is no strict rule about critical hits in the 1e books, to include Unearthed Arcana, but a lot of 1e DM's use critical hits of varying sorts. The rules in the DMG, p. 61, explicitly put critical hits outside of the rules. 1: Can a Frost Brand weapon ...


5

Yes there is, you hire them. Maybe you hire a group of NPCs to go on a side quest for you, or to research this or that spell, or go find these items that we need for our main adventure. You can even hire someone to build you a castle if you have the money, and you can fill it with servants. Nothing has really changed other than it's not automatic. If you ...


5

Preamble Key to your conundrum ("I haven't been able to find as coherent a pattern"), is there isn't a coherent pattern. At least not a systematic one. I'll endeavor not to repeat too much of what @Majestic12 has said with his answer. Short Answer Like Weapon Speed Factor (pp.68-69, 95 in the 2nd edition Players Handbook), or Weapon Type vs Armor Type ...


4

Hit dice in AD&D are d8 unless otherwise specified. A creature with 4 hit dice would have 4d8 hit points. That means that you roll a d8 four times and add the results together to generate its hit points. HIT DICE indicates the parameters of the number of hit points a creature can withstand before being killed. Unless stated otherwise hit dice are ...



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