The Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting (3e) was a supplement published in 2001. Then, in 2003, D&D 3.5e was released... I have been waiting for a 3.5 version of the Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting or an update.

Was the FRCS abandoned? I know that there was not much in the way of actual rules in the 3e version to update. Is it still "good" for 3.5 play?

Was there any official notice from WOTC why that and other supplements weren't re-released as 3.5?

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Technically, the 3e book was Forgotten Realm Campaign Setting. There is a Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide, but it was for D&D 4e, not 3e. 4e didn’t have a “4.5e” though, so there was no update to make (there was the Essentials line, but that was just new content in a new style that slotted into regular 4e so you could continue to use FRCG). \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Commented Dec 18, 2021 at 23:00

1 Answer 1


They didn’t re-release any supplements. The core books—Player’s Handbook, Dungeon Master’s Guide, and Monster Manual—are the only books that got re-released in 3.5e. For the rest, the official rules have guidelines for updating 3e content to 3.5e, and then specific updates were printed in web articles, Dragon magazine articles, or later published 3.5e books. The only supplement that kind of got “re-released” was the 3e Psionics Handbook, which got “updated” (read: entirely replaced) by the 3.5e Expanded Psionics Handbook. And anyway, psionics’ inclusion in the d20 System SRD made them kinda-sorta core.

The primary 3.5e Forgotten Realms book is Player’s Guide to Faerûn. It includes 3.5e updates for some Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting content. Other 3.5e Forgotten Realms books include UnderdarkSerpent Kingdoms, Shining South, Lost Empires of Faerûn, Champions of Ruin, Champions of Valor, Power of Faerûn, Dragons of Faerûn, and Grand History of the Realms. The Champions books are particularly high-quality, in my opinion.² Also, an honorable mention to Tome of Magic, since many of the vestiges bound by that book’s binder class reference Forgotten Realms lore (e.g. one is Karsus).

  1. Not to be confused with the setting-agnostic 3.5e supplement Drow of the Underdark. Of course, Drow of the Underdark is still compatible with the Forgotten Realms, it’s just not specific to them.

  2. The quality of the Champions books is notable because, in my opinion, the quality of most Forgotten Realms books is awful. Serpent Kingdoms is probably the most problematic book in the entire edition, and that’s saying something when you put it up against, say, Savage Species, which wasn’t even meant to be a D&D book at all and got shoved into D&D when its own product line was scrapped.

  • \$\begingroup\$ "Savage Species, which wasn’t even meant to be a D&D book at all and got shoved into D&D when its own product line was scrapped." Really? I just figured that the rules wonkiness in it came from being at the tail end of 3.0 and being a sort of 3.0/3.5 hybrid book. \$\endgroup\$
    – nick012000
    Commented Dec 20, 2021 at 4:08
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    \$\begingroup\$ @nick012000 Both are true, but Savage Species is considerably wonkier than, say, Book of Vile Darkness or Fiend Folio. My understanding is that Savage Species was going to be the launch of a new d20 System game, but then they decided not to buy didn’t want to waste the work that went into it. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Commented Dec 20, 2021 at 12:54

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