Friday, October 25, 2019

Next AD&D - A-series

I've been going back and forth between the A-series and G-series for our next AD&D fun.

I've basically settled on the A-series.

When I do run the G-series, it will be with the pregrens. But they're quite high level, and I feel like they're a bit overpowered for G1. They also require the knowledge of a lot of spells and tactical uses of magical items that come with experience in AD&D, not just gaming experience.

I think it's easier to get that experience using the A-series. The pregens are lower level, and have a smaller book of spells and special magical items to deal with. The scenarios are a bit smaller, too, requiring some puzzles to be solved and fixed encounters to be dealt with, without the large free-flowing tactical challenge of the high-level fights of the G-series.

My players need to be a little more AD&D experience, I feel, before the G-series will be a challenge instead of a source of frustration.

So I'll be prepping A2, probably, and running that for our next AD&D game. We'll almost certainly do Felltower first . . . but I'm looking forward to seeing how my players handle the A-series.


  1. I look forward to reading it.

    Yes, every DM I've known who ran the G-series says the recommended power level for G1 is way overpowered while getting to G2 is a huge leap up in difficulty. There are two tiers of characters in the pregens, one that is higher level 12-14 levels, and one that is lower level 8-10 levels. The lower level characters could find this adventure less of a pushover but characters in both groups have large numbers of magic items to be familiar with.

    Probably the biggest challenge to taking your friends into the G-series is that they are very tuned to the combat system in GURPS. They know what their options are and how to exploit them. AD&D combat is very different and requires entirely different knowledge to exploit its system. The G-series is a tour-de-force of combat. It requires planning, scouting, and strategy that your GURPS players are capable of, but then no matter what you do its going to end up in a huge chaotic melee with reinforcements coming from all over that will challenge their combat rules and spell mastery and the DM's ability to track and plan many groups in different areas at the same time.

    Actually, I'd be interested to see how your GURPS group does taking on G1 and comparing it to the journals of long-time AD&D groups I've read. (Honestly, I own and read the G-series adventures but I've never run or played them myself.) I'm curious just how different their approach would be, given the different focus they've gotten from playing GURPS more recently.

    1. Thanks for the detailed comment.

      Yes, I think you've nailed the issue - the relative lack of AD&D experience for many of my players - and the lack of recent, steady experience for the others - will make it difficult. Overpowered AD&D characters might help as it gives them more wiggle room. But I prefer they get some more practice with the lower-level A-series before we go on to the high-level G-series.

      White Plume Mountain showed me that some players aren't really used to the trickiness of spell selection and usage in AD&D. Handing out 12th level characters won't make that easier.

    2. Also on my reviews page I reviewed the G-series and talk a bit about my experience running them.


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