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Oriental Adventures (Miniature AD&D Collector's Edition) Paperback


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Twenty First Century Games (2000)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B002QX54OQ
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,449,458 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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It has everything you need to run an Oriental Adventure, or make characters in an oriental setting.
Jeffrey Bartlett
This book is a great addition to any collection of AD&D books and a great source of adventuring in the far east!!!!!
James Mathews
The Wu Jen have never been done as well since this edition, and they have many great spells in the book.
C. Bedford Crenshaw

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Jeffrey Bartlett on December 25, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This book is fantastic, and adds so much depth to the campaign. It has everything you need to run an Oriental Adventure, or make characters in an oriental setting. TSR has yet to duplicate in any other book the remarkebly well balanced rules of this book. For example, the Ninja in Oriental Adventures is more inetersting, better devolped, and more enjoyable to paly with only a few pages of coverage than anything in the 2nd edition complete book of Ninjas. IF you can find it, buy it, you will not regret it. The only drawbacks are that A) the book is out of print, and B) AD&D is moving to 3rd edition, and Oriental Adventures exists solely as a 1st edition book, so the rule converstaion may or may not proove difficult.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Dmitri M. A. Hubbard on June 29, 2008
Format: Hardcover
First I will preface my remarks by saying I have not played AD&D since around 1991. Although I am aware of the developments since then, I have never chosen to move to the new systems and feed the publisher's coffers.

One of Gygax's last major contributions to TSR, Oriental Adventures details the oriental adaptation of the 1st Edition AD&D rules (post Unearthed Arcana). This is a fantastic game and a fantastic system, although those of us coming to the genre anew might find it intimidating. Essentially this details some of the classic warrior archetypes in Asia (Bushi - soldiers, Kensai - weapon specialists, Samurai - honour-bound warriors) wizard archetype (Wu Jen) etc... Ninja is not an independent class, but a secondary class that some archetypes can have (similar to multi-classing).

There are four races, one which is like an Oriental version of Dwarves, one which are effectively shapechangers, and the three branches of part-human "Spirit folk", and lastly, humans.

Gygax lays out a couple more layers to the normal AD&D experience - honour system and class / caste system, and adds in martial arts for a full Oriental experience. The spell lists from the Player's Handbook are adapted to the Orient, and many stay roughly equivalent.

This book was criticised at the time for mixing different oriental cultures / archetypes into one book. In response to that - this is fantasy. There is enough interesting variants in here to give an Eastern flavor to any campaign. If you are interested in this area you can also pick up fairly cheaply some of the Rokugan books (published by L5R and easily adaptable to this rule set - although written for 3rd ed d20 system, or vice-versa).

However, this is a very good value book now available cheaply second hand.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By J. S. Osthoff on July 11, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have more than a fond spot in my gaming heart for Oriental Adventures. A few years before it was released, I worked on my own Ninja & Samurai classes/weapons and found that my amateur efforts were remarkable close to what OA brought to the gaming table - it was my honorable fate to fall in love with this book.

There are many other reviews out there that tell you what is in this AD&D 1e book. I thoroughly recommend it to those who have never tried the rules in OA before (especially you grognards that missed the fun the first time around or those new to the OSR resurgence of older game rulesets). Many factors make Oriental Adventures worth picking up, but let me tell you some of what it lacks, so you can investigate that material for yourself:

OA has very little information on faux-Chinese classes or culture. Indeed, it has very little on Japanese, Tibetan and completely lacks information on other Asian cultures. I recommend that you acquire a few history books about the time periods and places you will be emulating in the OA Kara-Tur setting (or your own setting). You should also investigate the social philosophies of the real world equivalents of OA (Taoism, Buddhism and Confucianism for China ... Zen and Shinto as well as the code of Bushido for Japan ... The social structure and philosophy of Tibetan Buddhism, etc). Arts such as calligraphy, poetry, ink painting, mandalas, statuary, etc can potentially play a huge part in a D&D campaign that is not hack-and-slash only, so a good GM may want to take the time to familiarize themselves with some of the basics of these.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By C. Bedford Crenshaw on November 30, 2004
Format: Hardcover
The only fault in this book is that it is written in archaic 1st Edition D&D rules, which is not that easily adapted to 3.5. But this book is worth a translation, because it is far superior to its modern counterpart.

The rules for new races & classes (including ninja and kensai) are much better presented. The martial arts system is a munchkin's dream (It's pathetically easy for anyone to start doing 3d10 punches), but unlike it's 3e successor, its rich in flavor and easy to advance in a far more logical manner. The Wu Jen have never been done as well since this edition, and they have many great spells in the book. As an added bonus, they used a new setting for OA, instead of retrofitting everything to Rokugan, which severely crippled the 3e book.

A must have for any RPG collection.
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