Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Mail Call: Chris Perkins' "Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Edition"

Been a busy time at work, so just a fast one today.

Some time ago I grabbed something called "Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Edition" from the web.  It has been sitting in my "to be sorted" folder for ages.  I was in the process of digging up some other material for a project when I happened upon them.   The layout was nice and clean and the covers were nearly print-ready.  So I spent some time a few nights ago tweaking it and slapped the whole thing on Lulu.

Here is what I got.

Chris Perkins' Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Ed.

Chris Perkins' Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Ed. PHB

Chris Perkins' Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Ed. PHB

Chris Perkins' Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Ed. PHB

Chris Perkins' Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Ed. PHB

Chris Perkins' Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Ed. MM

Chris Perkins' Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Ed. MM

Chris Perkins' Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Ed. DMG

Chris Perkins' Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Ed. DMG

Chris Perkins' Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Ed. Covers

Frankly, I am pretty happy with it. 

I went a re-looked up what this game was/is and it turns out it was done by Chris Perkins.  The game is a very nice blend of AD&D 1st and 2nd Editions with mechanics from D&D 3rd Edition and inspiration from Castles & Crusades.  The overall effect is not unlike D&D 5th Edition, but more of a 1st Edition feel.

The art is all copied from published classic D&D sources, so there is no way this thing is legal to sell. I am sure if cleaned up it could be released under the OGL, but it is so close to Castles & Crusades and D&D 5th edition there is no need to do so save as an entertaining experiment.

Perkins used to have a website for it, http://www.adnd3egame.com/cnc.htm but it is long since gone. There are details about it at RPG Geek and Boardgame GeekI have no idea where it is hosted anymore.  I found a new site for it here: https://scruffygrognard.wordpress.com/2010/02/02/add-3rd-edition/Note: Perkins is now working on a BX3e.

It is a completely playable game and has a lot of nice features.  It reads like a D&D "Greatest hits" album.  It is just missing some "kits" or "subclasses" to make it more like 5e.  

The question of course is why play this when I have all the other versions of *D&D?  Well, the simple answer is that it looks like fun.  IT might be neat to play this "what if" version.  It is also interesting to see which design choices Perkins went with. Like why 20th century D&D style saving throws and not say 3rd/4th Edition ones or 5th Edition/Castles & Crusades ones?  How does the skill system work (feels like a mix of AD&D 1st ed and D&D 3rd ed)?  There are Bard and Monk classes, how do they compare to their 1st and 3rd ed counterparts?  Plus there is a section on Psionics. So there is a lot to explore here.

Besides the books are damn attractive.  The layout like I said is clean and simple, but it appeals to me.

Now that I found his site again I am curious to see if there will be more updates on it. His BX3e project also looks very interesting.


Gwarh said...

Not to be "that guy" but I'll be that guy. The Chris Perkins who created the AD&D3E PDF's is not the same Chris Perkins who works for Wizards of the Coast. They just happen to share the same name is all.

I only know this as he says as much on his blog.

Justin said...

I always like reading these types of thins, where someone put all the love they could into a something there's no way to make money off of.

Timothy S. Brannan said...

Be that guy!! Thanks for the heads up. Fixed in my post.

@Irrational Athiest,
For me, this is a wonderful look into someone else's design. For something that is free on the internet a lot of work went into it!

Unknown said...

Can someone else (me, for example) also purchase the books you had done by Lulu, from Lulu?

Joe said...

Great looking books. How do I get some?

Joe said...

Great looking books. How do I get some?

Zero said...

I really want to run Goodman Games OAR modules with this. I've been wanting to run the OAR Temple of Elemental Evil and this may be the perfect system to use.

Timothy S. Brannan said...

@Unknown and Joe,
You can't. I printed these on my own from the PDFs and I have since deleted the Lulu project. If you want prints you will need to print them on your own. Selling these is a copyright violation.

Yes, using this with the OAR adventures might be a lot of fun.

JB said...

Wow...those Lulu hardcovers turned out pretty sweet. I soooo want to do this (editing my own version of AD&D), but I just don't have the chops (or software) to do my own covers (especially the spine-work).

Any pointers are, of course, appreciated.
; )

Timothy S. Brannan said...

Those covers came pre-made, all I had to do was rescale them and upload them.
Wish that was more help!

doccarnby said...

Oh, I remember seeing this ages ago, thought it looked neat and then forgot about it (and ended up picking up C&C when I decided that as much as I love 3e, I wanted something more classic). I'll check it out now that I'm reminded.

The books look great too. Where's the DMG cover from? I know the other two but I don't recognise that one.

Timothy S. Brannan said...


It is from the 1st Ed DM's screen.

Unknown said...

Timothy S. Brannan, any chance you could upload links to the covers and documents you made? I'd love to print these on Lulu, but I'm not exactly sure how to go about submitting them to the site in such a way it complies with Lulu's formatting specs. Thanks!

Timothy S. Brannan said...

No. The files are on the author's website, you can get them from there. If I added them here that would be a serious copyright violation. Yes, the author is committing his own violations, but two wrongs are not a right here. Sorry. You get them from his site.

The_Myth said...

Will you be offering any discussion, criticism, or adaptation with regards to the Hedge Witch/Wizard presented in the ADD3eDMG?

Timothy S. Brannan said...


I wanted to talk about all the books more this past week, but my day job has me buried in work.

Dan Delgado said...

Hey there, I’m a noob to all things publishing and graphics. But since I know you cannot upload something for others to have printed as it could easily be an “under the table” way to sell it - could you like maybe Blog or blog (I don’t know social media well either - but I AM a software engineer so not scared of the tech ;) just poor artistic skills) the steps on creating it ready for LuLu printing cos those looked great.

Plus who knows, maybe someday I edit an existing system for my own house rules to have a cool personal Rulebook.

Jarazix said...

I just printed these on LULU myself. I think its a nice middle ground between wanting the old school feel, but some of the modern niceties.