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"Which is the best edition of AD&D?" Topic

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Personal logo optional field Supporting Member of TMP02 Jun 2012 10:45 p.m. PST

This may have already been suggested before but…
1st e AD&D
2nd e AD&D
3rd e D&D
3.5 e D&D
4th e D&D
the old timey TSR boxed D&D set

Personal logo Patrick R Supporting Member of TMP03 Jun 2012 1:01 a.m. PST

Personally I think 3.5 and old red Box D&D. Never been a fan of 4th edition.

I played 3.5 and Pathfinder for some years and at this point I think I'd rather go back to a set like Red box D&D.

LeadLair7603 Jun 2012 2:24 a.m. PST

I always liked 1.5th edition (ie 1st edition with some stuff from 2nd edition).

Brandlin03 Jun 2012 2:33 a.m. PST


TheMasterworkGuild03 Jun 2012 2:39 a.m. PST

3.5 – Although I think the time may be coming to move on. I'd love to see what 5th edition is like. If we dont like it we'll probably try pathfinder for a change.

Personal logo etotheipi Sponsoring Member of TMP03 Jun 2012 3:00 a.m. PST

1st edition

Joe5mc03 Jun 2012 3:34 a.m. PST

1st – if you are a casual player

3.5 – if you play frequently

Irish Marine Supporting Member of TMP03 Jun 2012 4:24 a.m. PST

The First because that's all I played.

Tuudawgs03 Jun 2012 4:43 a.m. PST


DisasterWargamer Supporting Member of TMP03 Jun 2012 5:10 a.m. PST

The original – found there was a lot more focus on the concepts versus the rule book

John the OFM03 Jun 2012 5:37 a.m. PST

Never played any with "A" in the title.
Never thought it was needed.

White Box D&D, before they started numbering them, and when GMs had to make everything up, instead of having everything handed to them on a silver platter. Kids today, I tell you.


Original here too!

Athelwulf03 Jun 2012 5:56 a.m. PST


Garand03 Jun 2012 6:29 a.m. PST

3.5. And I've played since BECMI D&D and everything in between.

BTW, I have the playtest materials for 5e. There's enough in there to alienate 3.5 players and 4e players…


skippy000103 Jun 2012 7:02 a.m. PST

I prefer Castles and Crusades with a sprinkling of Arduin Grimoire.

But for this, I'd go with 3.5, broken as it is.

Pizzagrenadier03 Jun 2012 7:06 a.m. PST

Anything that allows me to be free of using THAC0.

But basing my preference solely on the system I used that delivered the most fun, playable, and longest period of memorable sessions where the GMs (myself and a friend) were able to be as spontaneous as we wanted and allow for the system to do its job it would have to be 3.0 and 3.5 hands down.

John D Salt03 Jun 2012 7:06 a.m. PST

Constitutional provisions prevent me from agreeing with the OFM, so I shall merely remark that he is right.

All the best,


The Monstrous Jake03 Jun 2012 7:27 a.m. PST

First edition AD&D is the only one I played extensively, so that'd be my pick.

My group did try second edition briefly when it came out, but I and most of the others didn't see any need to upgrade, so we didn't.

If I had it all to do over again I'd probably go with the original white box D&D.

Only Warlock03 Jun 2012 8:51 a.m. PST

First or Pathfinder.

Space Monkey03 Jun 2012 9:29 a.m. PST

If I were going to play D&D again I'd go for one of the retro-clones… Labyrinth Lord, Swords & Wizardry, Lamentations Of The Flame Princess.
Outside of those D&D is dead to me, now it's just a brand name that Hasbro owns.

Chris Rance03 Jun 2012 10:18 a.m. PST

First for me, but the group prefers Pathfinder.

JimSelzer03 Jun 2012 12:50 p.m. PST

3.5 and pathfinder

Brandlin03 Jun 2012 2:07 p.m. PST

Attention, Luddite entering the conversation …

What, or who, the hell is pathfinder???

Waco Joe03 Jun 2012 3:15 p.m. PST

White Box supplemented by stuff in the early Dragons.

good times.

Garand03 Jun 2012 4:59 p.m. PST

What, or who, the hell is pathfinder???

When D&D 3e was released, it was released with the Open Gaming License, meaning that anyone could reprint the rules as long as they reprinted the OGL and refrained from using any of the copyright material. This also means they could modify sections or mechanics to adhere to whatever vision they might have. This agreement extended to 3.5.

When WotC released 4e it caused a real schism in the fanbase, moreso IMHO than the release of 2nd or 3rd did. Some publishers simply reprinted the D&D rules verbatim (IIRC Mongoose did this at one point), but when Paizo (previous publisher of Dungeon and Dragon magazines, before WotC yanked the license and turned them into digital publications) decided to do this, they reasoned it would be better to do a new version that cleaned up some of the problems of D&D 3.5, rather than just republish 3.5 verbatim. So Pathfinder was born, and is more like "D&D 3.75." I should say this is the game we are currently playing, and I think they did a very good job with it, so much that I see no reason to ever go back to D&D 3.5e…


DalyDR03 Jun 2012 5:26 p.m. PST



Flat Beer and Cold Pizza03 Jun 2012 6:12 p.m. PST


beer pizza

21eRegt03 Jun 2012 6:22 p.m. PST

2nd. Still play it. Examined 3, 3.5 and 4th, saw nothing in them I wanted.

CeruLucifus03 Jun 2012 7:04 p.m. PST

4e for me.

I've played every edition. The early releases (1.0, white box, etc) had tons of fun energy behind them that extended into the play sessions, and I have great nostalgia for that era, but the actual mechanics were a hodgepodge of different approaches.

AD&D was a cleanup but was not a topdown redesign which is what the system needed.

Same with AD&D2. It did try to revamp some approaches -- clerics for example -- but was ineffective. Oriental Adventures for AD&D2 is the best combination of fun and playable that I remember from that era.

3.0 was a topdown redesign as far as mechanics, but made the system all about minmaxing, which tended to discourage casual play. The last several editions suffered from the problem of endless supplement books, and 3.x continued these. 3.5 was a cleanup but didn't change anything -- anybody could walk into a game and build and play a character, but they'd never be as effective as the guy with all the supplements and a tax accountant's mindset as far as what to stack with what.

4e kept the best part of the mechanics -- the operating part -- but simplified the character design with helpful broad strokes. The powers approach to abilities is a departure from earlier editions but is very playable, and gives all character classes a common paradigm, making it easier to try an alternate class and still be effective. 4e is also the first edition that has the tactical approach built into it, for both players and gamemasters. There are better smarter tools for gamemasters in this edition than any other.

I've gotten together in the last couple years with my friends from the OD&D / AD&D / AD&D2 era and we've played games of AD&D / AD&D2, and the old mechanics do what they always did, but I still think 4e is better.

Little Big Wars03 Jun 2012 8:45 p.m. PST

3.5, definitely.

4th is a tactical boardgame, not a roleplaying game.

Corporal Agarn03 Jun 2012 9:10 p.m. PST

1st Ed for me although I do have the original greyhawk and chain mail books etc in a box somewhere, idoes that count as the genesis version??? Please no phil collins references!

Dynaman878904 Jun 2012 3:24 a.m. PST

2nd, after that I moved onto better games.

timlillig04 Jun 2012 6:40 a.m. PST

Basic D&D or the Rules Cyclopedia.

pphalen04 Jun 2012 12:01 p.m. PST

2nd, but without THACO

Personal logo etotheipi Sponsoring Member of TMP04 Jun 2012 5:27 p.m. PST

White Box D&D, before they started numbering them, and when GMs had to make everything up, instead of having everything handed to them on a silver platter

Actually, the white box edition came with pre-made adventures. The AD&D stuff didn't. :)

richarDISNEY05 Jun 2012 6:54 a.m. PST


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