Aaron's Rules Cyclopedia Errata and Companion Document*

* Aaron Oliver, not Aaron Allston who compiled and developed the Rules Cyclopedia itself.

April 7, 2017 -- Version 34

Distribute this document freely as long as it remains unaltered and no money is exchanged.
Also feel free to print it out, even though you'll be using gobs of ink and reams of paper....

I am not in any way affiliated with TSR or WotC, nor is this document in any way official.

   The intent of this document is to basically "complete" the Rules Cyclopedia.... There are 
various contradictions, omissions, and errors in the Cyclopedia which need to be fixed. There 
are also instances where the rules don't quite cover some situations that may need to be 
addressed, or there are loose ends or holes in the rules that need patched. Also, I have found 
that in many places the Cyclopedia re-words certain descriptions and mechanics that are taken 
from the Mentzer-edited sets, and when enough care wasn't taken in doing so, the rules were 
changed from how they are supposed to function. This document will hopefully cover most of 
those things, so that other rulebooks won't need to be referenced when using the Cyclopedia.

   When possible I gather rules from whatever sources are available, and try to adjust them, 
when needed, so that they all work together. In some cases, creating a few extra rules can't 
be avoided in order to fix certain problems or holes in the current rules. Where D&D lacks 
sufficient rules, I have borrowed a few rules from AD&D. And of course, I have also thrown in 
some suggestions which I think are good. I do try to refrain from including extensive 
unnecessary suggestions, but as this document has grown, I have included more of these 
suggestions where I feel they are useful.

   I suppose that in a grander sense, after all the time I've spent compiling this Document, 
it has become something I can leave behind as a small legacy. Something that will perhaps live 
on beyond my own limited years. A small mark I've left in the world. A scribble on the wall 
that says, "I was here" to show that I once existed....    
   And when you read my little mark on the wall, you should also take a moment to remember the 
life and legacy of Gary Gygax, 1938-2008. Without him, this game would not exist. 

The sources I have referenced most are:

The 1983-1986 Mentzer-edited Basic, Expert, Companion, Masters, and Immortals sets
The 1991 Classic D&D Game Rulebook
The 1979 1st Edition AD&D Dungeon Master's Guide by Gary Gygax
The 1979 Holmes-edited Dungeons & Dragons rulebook
The 2002 Unofficial D&D Rules Cyclopedia Errata
The 6/27/03 Wizards of the Coast 3rd Edition D&D FAQ
The 3/25/05 Wizards of the Coast D&D FAQ version 3.5
The 1985 Book of Marvelous Magic by Frank Mentzer 

I have tried to cite my sources with page numbers when possible.

   I would also like to mention the Classic D&D Forum at Dragonsfoot.org as an excellent 
resource. If you'd like to discuss any of the rules herein, Dragonsfoot would be the best 
place to go. You can even find Frank Mentzer there and ask him questions directly. He's been 
invaluably helpful in clarifying many things I've put in this document.

The most recent version of this document should be available at this address:


That should redirect you to the current location:


   If that location changes, the redirection should take you to the new address, assuming the 
free redirection service continues to function, and I modify it properly. Failing that, you'll 
just have to check Dragonsfoot forums.

   In most cases I have (improperly) capitalized things, such as spell names or character 
classes, in order to set them apart as game terms. Also note that if I mention a page number 
alone, I am always referring to that page in the Rules Cyclopedia itself rather than an entry 
in this Document.


   If this header doesn't look correct, please turn off Word Wrap or make the window wider

Page 6-7, Character Creation:

   As stated on page 145, and worth making a note of here, a player can switch his highest 
score with the Prime Requisite of the class he wants to play (before any other adjustments are 

Suggested Rules

   I know everyone probably has their own house rules for creating characters, but I will 
offer a quick suggestion here. Allow each player to roll up 3 sets of stats and pick which set 
he wants to use, discarding the rest. 

   I think many people just start characters out with maximum Hit Points, but that takes away 
a bit of the fun of rolling them up. And to make that balanced, you would also have to start 
monsters with maximum hit points for their first Hit Die....
   Instead, a good alternate method, borrowed from AD&D Unearthed Arcana, is to roll for your 
Hit Points and apply any appropriate Constitution modifiers as usual, and then if your 
starting Hit Points are below the following minimum values for your Hit Die, raise your Hit 
Points to the minimum. This only applies to the very first roll of a new character's Hit 
Points, not further rolls after gaining more levels (though Frank Mentzer says he always 
allows a player to re-roll a result of "1" for a Hit Point roll, at any level).
 Hit  Min. 
 Die  HP
 d4   3
 d6   4
 d8   5

Page 9, Adjustments for Ability Scores:

High Wisdom and Saving Throws

    The bonus or penalty for Wisdom is always applied to Saving Throws vs. Rod, Staff, or 
Spell, but it can also apply to other Saving Throws too, such as vs. Magic Wands, vs. Death 
Ray or Poison, or vs. Paralysis or Turn to Stone if the attack is caused by a spell effect or 
a magic item which produces a spell effect.

Bonuses and Penalties

   The possibility exists for scores to be lower than 3 or greater than 18. For example, some 
monsters have Intelligence scores that can be higher than 18, or a character could have his 
Constitution reduced below 3 from magical aging attacks. If you want to determine the 
appropriate adjustments for such scores, you can use the table found in the Players' Guide to 
Immortals, page 30:
 Bonuses and Penalties
  for Ability Scores
  Score   Adjustment  
    0         -5
    1         -4
   2-3        -3      
   4-5        -2      
   6-8        -1      
   9-12     No adj.   
  13-15       +1      
  16-17       +2      
   18         +3      
  19-20       +4
  21-23       +5
  24-27       +6

The table continues all the way up to 100, but that's far beyond the scope of this document, 
since there is no way for mortal Player Characters to ever have a score higher than 18, even 
when using the supreme power of an Artifact. Players Guide to Immortals, page 18, notes, 
"Mortal ability scores cannot exceed 18, and any increase in excess of this is discarded."

Page 10, Languages, Charisma Adjustment Table:


   Despite what is indicated in this section, Alignment Languages have no written form; this 
is specifically stated on page 11. To make sense of Alignment Languages, do not consider them 
to be like mundane languages; they are more a result of the magical connection a character has 
to the Immortals of his Alignment, which in turn links him to all other intelligent creatures 
of that Alignment so that communication is possible.

   For characters with a high Intelligence, look on page 258 to find a sample list of extra 
languages to choose from.

Charisma Adjustment Table

   The Charisma Adjustment Table is inconsistent with previous editions. The Charisma Reaction 
Adjustments were traditionally different than the standard adjustments for ability scores; 
reaction rolls are made with 2d6, so the adjustments to them are not supposed to be so large.

   The tables showing the previous adjustments can be found in the Basic Player's Manual p.36 
or 51, or the Master DM's Book p.3, or the Players' Guide to Immortals p.30 (which includes 
some additional numbers outside the normal ranges, just to be thorough):

       Charisma Adjustment Table
 Charisma  Reaction  Maximum No. Retainer
  Score   Adjustment  Retainers   Morale
    1         -3         1          3
   2-3        -2         1          4
   4-5        -1         2          5
   6-8        -1         3          6
   9-12     No adj.      4          7
  13-15       +1         5          8
  16-17       +1         6          9
   18         +2         7         10
  19-20       +2         8         11
  21-23       +3         9         12

   With that noted, it's probably fine to just use the standard adjustments to avoid 
complication, and Charisma doesn't need to be more of a "dump stat" than it already is; if 
someone has a 16 Charisma, let them have the +2 bonus....

Page 14, 18, Clerics/Avengers Turning/Controlling Undead:

   There are a lot of holes that need to be patched in the description of Turning Undead here, 
and it needs to be altered to be in line with the Control ability of Avengers (p.18, Avengers, 
paragraph 4), which also needs to be balanced. The following is just taking the actual rules 
from various places and combining them all so everything works together, with a few slight 
changes to Clerics.

Holy Symbols

   First off, the third paragraph states that a Cleric does not need a Holy Symbol to Turn 
Undead, but this was not found in any of the Mentzer sets, and Frank has stated that a Cleric 
absolutely does need a Holy Symbol in order to Turn Undead.
   Should a Cleric find himself without a Holy Symbol, he could fabricate a rough one for 
himself, but Frank suggests this will cause a penalty of -4 to any rolls involved in Turning. 
   There is also the 5 gp "inexpensive Holy Symbol" found on the Adventuring Gear Table in the 
entry for page 69, which Frank suggests should inflict a -2 penalty to Turning rolls. A 
character with the appropriate General Skills could create these (e.g., Crafting, Art, 
Metalworking, etc.).
   The high-quality 25 gp Holy Symbol would be something created by a Cleric's church. As with 
Holy Water, the specific creation process is never described, so is left up to the DM (perhaps 
it could be treated similar to creating Magic Items as described in Chapter 16). 

Suggested Rules

   Chaotic Clerics and Avengers cannot Destroy undead, but they may Control (or "Dominate") 
them, ONLY on a D result or better. For Chaotic Clerics and Avengers, if Control is not chosen 
(or in the rare case a Lawful Cleric chooses not to Destroy), treat D, D+, or D# results as T, 
T+, and T# (increasing the number of undead that are Turned).
   Neutral Clerics may only Turn undead, treating the D+ and D# results as above.
   I would disregard part of the last paragraph under "Turning Undead" about failing to Turn 
one specific monster, since Turning isn't a targeted effect; it affects groups of undead in 
the area. The Basic Dungeon Masters Rulebook, p.21, says, "If an attempt at Turning Undead is 
successful and more Undead remain, the Cleric may Turn them again. Once a failure to Turn 
occurs, further attempts by that Cleric will have no effect." The 1991 D&D Game Rulebook, p.7, 
adds, "Once a cleric fails an attempt to turn undead, all his other attempts during the same 
battle also fail." This would apply even if new undead of differing types arrive and join the 
   Speaking of which, the 1E AD&D DMG, p.65, has some guidelines for turning groups containing 
different types of undead. All weaker undead in the group must be Turned before the stronger 
ones can be Turned. This order should be determined first by the difficulty of the actual Turn 
attempt (working your way up the Turning Undead Table), and then by the HD of the creatures. 
The difficulty of the Turn attempt can vary greatly if the lesser undead are being controlled 
by some greater undead (see pages 217-218 about Lieges and Pawns). For example, in a mixed 
group of undead, a Cleric would have to Turn any free-willed Wraiths before he could Turn 
Skeletons which were being controlled by a Vampire, because the first Turn attempt against a 
Pawn is made as if it's against the Liege. Then, because they have fewer HD, the Cleric would 
have to turn the Skeletons before attempting to Turn the Vampire.
Range and Area of Effect:
   These aspects of Turning are never mentioned, but the D&D FAQ v3.5 gives some details that 
can easily be imported. Page 30 of that FAQ indicates that Turning can potentially affect any 
undead within a 60' radius of the Cleric, as long as the undead isn't completely shielded from 
the Cleric by something solid (behind full cover), but otherwise, p.5 of the v3.5 FAQ states 
that the visibility of the undead or the Cleric is irrelevant for successful Turning.

Duration of Turn or Control:

   On any successful result which required a roll (7, 9, or 11) the undead will be Turned 
(i.e., they will not touch the Cleric, and will flee as far away from him as possible) for 
only 1-10 rounds, after which time the undead will return to the area if they make a Reaction 
Roll of 8 or higher on 2d6 or at the DMs discretion (Basic DMs Rulebook, p.31).
   For any automatically successful Turn (T or better -- a much more powerful effect) the 
undead will be Turned (or Controlled, for Chaotic Clerics or Avengers with a D result) for one 
game turn (10 minutes) per CLERICAL level (not the Avenger's actual level, as stated in his 
description). The same Reaction Roll applies afterward to see if the undead return to the 
   Also note that when the duration of Control ends, the undead flee as if Turned, for a 
duration as would be normal for the Cleric's level. An undead that is under any kind of Turn 
effect cannot be Controlled until the duration of the Turn effect ends.

   Some undead get Saving Throws against Turning. Other than the ones specifically mentioned 
in the monster descriptions, also note that on page 218 it says that undead spellcasters may 
make a Saving Throw vs. Spells to avoid any T or D result entirely. Many types of undead have 
the potential to be spellcasters....
   When an undead gets a Save against Destruction, it should be applied against Control as 
well. For undead that get a Saving Throw against T results, it should also apply against non-
automatic Turning (i.e., successful rolls of 7, 9, or 11).

Page 15, Optional Turning Variation:

   I created an alternate dice mechanic for Turning Undead, which simplifies things by using 
the Hit Dice of the undead instead of its creature type, and has other benefits such as 
keeping Skeletons and Zombies as viable opponents for a bit longer (normally a 2nd level 
Cleric can automatically Turn skeletons; that's a bit too easy, too soon in the scope of the 
full game system). This method also unifies all the mechanics discussed above 
(Destroy/Dominate), and it pretty easy to implement. Other rules for Turning still apply.
 The Cleric attempting to Turn rolls 2d6
 Add 2 for each Level of the Cleric
 Subtract 2 for each HD/Level of the undead

 Result  Effect              | Result  Effect
     7 = Fail                |    20 = D, 2 Rounds        
     8 = T, 2 Rounds         |    21 = D, 4 Rounds        
     9 = T, 4 Rounds         |    22 = D, 6 Rounds        
    10 = T, 6 Rounds         |    23 = D, 8 Rounds        
    11 = T, 8 Rounds         |    24 = D, 10 Rounds       
    12 = T, 10 Rounds        |    25 = D, 12 Rounds       
    13 = T, 12 Rounds        |    26 = D, 1 Turn          
    14 = T, 1 Turn           |    27 = D, 2 Turns         
    15 = T, 2 Turns          |    28 = D, 3 Turns         
    16 = T, 3 Turns          |    29 = D, 4 Turns         
    17 = T, 4 Turns          |    30 = D, 5 Turns         
    18 = T, 5 Turns          |    31 = D, 6 Turns (1 Hour)
    19 = T, 6 Turns (1 Hour) |   32+ = D+, *          
                             |   56+ = D#, *            
  T : 2d6 HD of undead within 60' are forced to flee for the given duration.
  D : 2d6 HD of undead are Destroyed, or Dominated for the additional duration then 
      Turned for 1 Hour. If the Cleric chooses not to Destroy or Dominate, the 
      additional duration is simply added to the base 1 Hour Turn duration.
  D+ : 3D6 HD of undead are affected.
  D# : 4d6 HD of undead are affected.
  * D+/D# Additional durations are number of Turns equal to the result rolled -25.
  Additional notes: Undead are grouped together by HD, not type. 
  In groups of undead with mixed HD, the lower HD ones must be Turned first.
  A Cleric who fails a Turning attempt may not make another attempt for 1 Turn (10 minutes).
  Only Lawful Clerics can Destroy.
  Only Chaotic Clerics can Dominate.
  Neutral Clerics can only Turn.

Page 16, Clerics - Choosing to Travel:

   There are additional details in the Players Companion, p.11-12, for traveling Clerics:
   In civilized areas:
   - The Cleric should gain experience points for helping those of the same Alignment.
   - Special adventures are frequent, as the problems encountered in other lands often 
     require a great leader (the Cleric) for a successful solution.
   - The Cleric often visits local rulers, and may gain special knowledge (rumors, maps, etc.)
     from them. However, conflicts with powerful land-owning Clerics may arise, and they might
     banish, exile, or imprison the traveling Cleric if their disagreements can't be resolved.
   - The Cleric gains fame, for better or worse. Tales of the Cleric's deeds will remain after
     the Cleric leaves, and those tales may attract other powerful characters -- and monsters
     to the Cleric.
   Additionally, in wilderness areas:
   - The Cleric may discover a long-lost ruin or shrine (a new dungeon) to either destroy or
   - The Cleric may discover a new race or civilization.
   - The tales of the wilderness Cleric's deeds are usually more distorted, so that little
     truth remains. Myths and legends about the Cleric may arise, for possible
     misunderstandings at a future time.

Page 19, Magic-User Spell Progression:

   After analyzing and comparing the spell progression tables from the Expert Rulebook (p.10) 
and the Rules Cyclopedia, I've come to the conclusion that the original progression is better. 
While the Cyclopedia table's progression is not bad, it makes alterations in order to adjust 
some minor patterns in the progression, but in doing so, it disrupts some major patterns.... 
   It turns out Frank Mentzer is self-admittedly a bit of a math freak, and the original 
progression was quite well-planned; in my opinion it shouldn't have been messed with in the 
Rules Cyclopedia.
   So I recommend using the original progression. Just be sure to make ALL of the changes 
below if you want to fix the Cyclopedia table:

At  6th level, 1st level spells = 3
At  9th level, 3rd level spells = 2
At 10th level, 1st level spells = 4
               4th level spells = 2
At 11th level, 2nd level spells = 4
               3rd level spells = 4
               6th level spells = 0
At 13th level, 1st level spells = 5
At 14th level, 1st level spells = 5

   Incidentally, I find it easier to write corrections in the table by placing a hard CD cover 
behind the page, and using a fine-tip mechanical pencil.

Page 20, Magic-Users - Higher Experience Levels:

   Some additional notes from the Players Companion, p.19:

   For land owning Magic-Users:
   Most Magic-Users with dungeons visit them once each month (or more), gathering any magical 
treasures that remain. If too much treasure is taken from the monsters, they will probably 
move out. Occasionally, if done quietly and secretly, the Magic-User may capture some of the 
monsters for use in magical research and potion making. This must be done carefully, lest the 
remaining monsters be scared away.
   For traveling Magic-Users:
   A magi has a chance (checked by the DM) to find treasure maps, and to hear rare rumors
     of powerful magic items.

Page 21-22, Thief:

Remove Traps

   Failure to Remove a Trap does NOT automatically trigger the trap. The Mentzer Basic set did 
not state that it did; see RC page 151 for the correct information. If you decide that there's 
a chance the trap will be triggered by a failed Remove Traps attempt, you could use a mechanic 
similar to how Pick Pockets works: a simple failure does not trigger the trap, but if the roll 
was greater than twice what the Thief needed for success (or 00 in any case), the trap could 
be triggered.

Climb Walls

   Some additional details about this ability are found in the Master DM's Book, page 53, 
where it describes the Thief Abilities granted by Artifacts, noting, "Each of these is 
identical to the standard thief ability."
   For Climb Walls it states, "The rate of climbing is 2 to 20 feet per round, varying because 
of the sheerness of the surface, available niches and cracks, etc."

Hear Noise

   The Master DM's Book, page 53, adds some details about this ability, "If the attempt 
succeeds, the user can pick out individual voices or sounds up to 120 feet away, or half that 
if there is an intervening barrier (door, curtain, etc.)"

Optional Thief Skill Adjustments

   To allow some variance for individual Thieves, and to give low level Thieves a better 
chance of actually succeeding with their skills, you can allow a Thief to perform his skills 
at +1 level of ability for each point of Dexterity bonus he has (e.g., a Thief with a 16 
Dexterity has a +2 adjustment, so he performs all his Thief Skills as if he were 2 levels 
higher than his current level). This bonus should only apply to Thieves, and not any other 
class which gains the use of Thief Skills.
   The same adjustment would also apply in a negative manner should a Thief ever find himself 
with a Dexterity below 9....

   Alternatively, I have totally re-written the Thief Skill system with more-unified 
mechanics, a smoother progression, and guidelines for difficulty of various tasks. It also 
makes things easier for lower-level Theives, with additional guidelines to allow for non-
thieves to attempt some of the same things. Further, I greatly expanded with more advanced 
abilities for high-level Thieves. My revamp was much too long to include here, but it should 
be available for download at the same location you got this Document.

Page 25, Elf - Hit Dice, Detection:

Hit Dice

   The boxed text indicates that an Elf gains +1 HP at level 10. This was taken from what I 
believe to be a misprint in the Master Player's book, page 12, where the footnote text said, 
"add 1 hp at 10th level." However, all other sources in the Expert and Companion set say that 
the Elf gains +2 hp at 10th level. And note that the Class Details section of this page says 
that the Elf should gain +2 HP at level 10, as does the Maximum Hit Points table on page 129. 
So +2 should be the correct value.


   It was omitted here that Elves detect Secret Doors on a roll of 1-2 on a d6 (see p.147).

Page 26, Elf Spell Progression:

   The Elf's spell table in the Rules Cyclopedia seems to have just been copied from the 
Magic-User section, but that is different from the Elf's spell progression found in the Expert 
Rulebook and Master Players' Book. I believe the previous progression is better, and it helps 
differentiate Elves by not giving them as many higher-level spells as Magic-Users who devote 
ALL their time to studying magic.

Expert Rulebook, p.18 (or Master Player's Book, p.12):


 Elf Spell Progression

 Level   Spells/Level
        1  2  3  4  5
  1     1  -  -  -  -
  2     2  -  -  -  -
  3     2  1  -  -  -
  4     2  2  -  -  -
  5     2  2  1  -  -
  6     3  2  2  -  -
  7     3  3  2  1  -
  8     4  3  2  2  -
  9     4  4  3  2  -
 10     5  4  3  2  1

Page 27, Halfling Language:

   The list of common languages on page 258 shows that there is a Halfling language, but the 
description for Halflings never indicates they can speak any additional languages. Apparently 
in game accessory GAZ8, The Five Shires, it is explained that the Halfling language is, in 
fact, a "dead language" and is not commonly spoken by Halflings. Normally Halflings will just 
adopt the local "Common Tongue" from wherever they live, for use as their standard language. 

Page 28, Druid:

   The Druid class is quite underpowered as written. Druids take on heavy limitations when 
converting from Cleric, yet they don't really gain enough benefits to balance it out.

   Here are some simple suggestions that can be used to give the Druid the power boost he 
needs. These options will make the Druid MUCH more feared and effective in his role as a 
guardian of nature. Further, these modifications can make the Druid a viable class through 
lower levels; you can optionally allow Druid characters to start at level 1 rather than 
converting to Druid from a Cleric at level 9.

1. Allow some simple cutting/piercing weapons, such as flint Daggers, stone Hand Axes, wooden 
Spears, thorn Blowguns, and possibly even bows and flint-head arrows (the Druid would need 
such tools when living in the forest, so allow stone in its natural form to be used, but still 
no refined metals. While on the subject, I think Druids would prefer using gems or gold as 
currency, as opposed to any highly-refined metal coins...).

2. Allow Scale Mail armor if it is entirely constructed from natural materials (shells, tree 
bark, or dragon's scales, for example). The construction of such armor would likely be a long 
and expensive process (collecting dragon's scales being no easy matter).

3. Allow Druids to have much more unrestricted use of poisons (they are a bit outside of the 
law as it is). They will logically have great knowledge of the plants used in creating such 
poisons and can take General Skills to reflect this (e.g., Alchemy), allowing them to create 
many different types of poison with effects ranging from paralysis, sleep, and death (not to 
mention the creation of antidotes for poisons and other natural cures for many types of 

4. Give Druids the Speak With Animals ability (p.31). Mystics gain this ability at level 6; 
Druids, who are supposed to be guardians of nature, deserve to have it too. If you allow Druid 
characters to start at 1st level, then this ability should be gained upon reaching 6th level 
(perhaps requiring 1-2 months of meditation at that time).

5. Apply the rule in the last paragraph of "Higher Experience Levels" for Elves (p.26) for the 
Druid in his home forest. This should only be applied to 9th level Druids who have set up 
their home in an area of the forest which they will protect (and again requiring 1-2 months of 
meditation). As a side note, I think this would mean a Druid would have to travel at least 5 
miles away from his home when he's hunting animals for food... otherwise he'd be killing the 
animal friends who would be expecting protection from him. Actually, those animals might even 
help him hunt.... 

6. Allow access to some Magic-User spells (gained by the usual meditation). Also, it seems an 
anomaly that a Druid does not gain the 7th level Weather Control spell until he is level 17, 
but for Magic-Users it is a 6th level spell which may be cast by level 12. Nature is supposed 
to be the realm of the Druid, so I suggest dropping the level of Weather Control for Druid 
characters to 6th level. This will require several other weather-related spells to be dropped 
in level accordingly. Additionally, although the Rules Cyclopedia says, "A druid cannot cast 
any spell that affects good or evil," I would just disregard that; although the spell names 
may say "Protection from Evil" or "Dispel Evil," they really aren't about good and evil. The 
Protection spells will protect you from anyone who is hostile toward you, and Dispel Evil 
affects enchanted, undead, and extra-planar creatures (all unnatural things, which a Druid 
rightly should be able to Dispel), so there is no real need to deny a Druid these spells. 
Though I would note that a Druid should NEVER be allowed to cast Animate Dead, for any reason 
(you could allow the spell to cast in reverse though -- see the entry for p.36 about Animate 
Dead). With all that said, here are my suggested changes to the Druid spell list, including 
the recommended Magic-User spells to allow (adding 4 new spells at each level; feel free to 
tinker around with the list if you feel other spells would be more appropriate):

   1st level - Analyze (but not on any item with metal parts)
               Read Languages (including clearly interpreting any animal markings)
               Ventriloquism (for making creepy forest noises to frighten away intruders)
               Sleep (outdoors only, accompanied by foggy mist or poppies appearing...)

   2nd level - Entangle
               Locate Object (great for finding rare plants)
               Phantasmal Force (more creepy forest effects)

   3rd level - Infravision
               Clairvoyance (through animals only)
               Water Breathing
               [add Control Temperature 10' Radius]

   4th level - Confusion (accompanied by fog so people get lost in the woods)
               Growth of Plants
               Hallucinatory Terrain (outdoors only)
               Polymorph Self (into natural creatures only)
               [add Control Winds] 
               [remove Control Temperature 10' Radius]
   5th level - Cloudkill (death fog -- outdoors only, and is not absorbed by vegetation) 
               Contact Outer Plane 
               Hold Monster
               Woodform (which will create actual living trees and plants)
               [add Summon Weather]
               [remove Control Winds]

   6th level - Invisible Stalker
               Lower Water
               Projected Image (still more creepiness)
               [add Weather Control]
               [remove Summon Weather]

   7th level - Charm Plant 
               Create Normal Monsters (natural creatures only)
               Lore (nonmetal objects only) 
               Shapechange (from 9th level; natural forms only)
               Sword (in the form of a spirit animal, but with the same combat effects)
               [remove Weather Control]

Higher Experience Levels

   The original intent for these ascension battles has been lost by the Cyclopedia's re-
wording. It's more clearly described (though not in great detail) in the Players Companion, 
page 14, "When the character gains enough XP to reach 30th level, one of the Nine must be 
found and fought by unarmed combat. If the character loses, 30th level is NOT gained (but a 
new challenge may be issued every 3 months)."

   Adding in a few more details, these battles are fought honorably; Druids view this as the 
natural way of things (survival of the fittest). So, spells may NOT be used; only unarmed 
combat. Magic items are not allowed, though Druids can wear normal armor if they wish (and 
each Druid might even have a set of ceremonial skins/armor that he wears during these 
   A high-level Druid's XP total only indicates his POTENTIAL level; in order to gain the 
actual level, he has to prove himself worthy by winning one of these challenges. If he loses 
the combat, he does NOT actually lose any XP. If he wins the combat THEN he gains the level, 
and his opponent loses a level (and all the benefits of that level), but the opponent does not 
lose any XP.
   The character could continue gaining XP even if his level progression is halted. He could 
still gain new General Skills and Weapon Mastery at the appropriate XP totals. Also see the 
entry for page 129 about Maximum Rate of Experience Gain, which applies when your XP total 
doesn't match your level.

Page 29, Mystic - Prime Requisite, Minimum Scores, Hit Dice:

Prime Requisite

   Instead of basing the Mystic's XP bonus solely on Strength (just like a Fighter), I 
recommend basing it on both the Mystic's Prime Requisites: Strength and Dexterity (just like a 
Halfling). So if either of these ability scores is 13 or greater, the character gains a 5% 
bonus to XP earned. If both these scores are 13 or greater, the XP bonus is 10%.

Minimum Scores

   The Masters set never mentioned any minimum scores needed in order to play a Mystic. But 
then again, it didn't even state the Prime Requisite for Mystics, and was only presenting a 
basic framework for Mystic characters, whereas the Cyclopedia fleshes them out more and 
integrates them as a fully-developed class. That said, I firmly believe setting required 
minimum scores of 13 in both Wisdom and Dexterity is inappropriate for Classic D&D. As with 
Demi-Humans, I recommend the character only be required to have scores of 9 or better in the 
appropriate abilities in order to play a Mystic.

Hit Dice

   In the Master's Set, Mystics actually got 16d6 Hit Dice, since they were listed as 
"monsters" with guidelines given to allow them as Player Characters. The Rules Cyclopedia, 
developing them more, followed the precedent of all other human classes by limiting them to 9 
HD, then adding a set amount of HP for each level after that. But only giving them +2 HP per 
level past 9 short-changes them from where they should be. I recommend instead giving them +3 
HP per level after 9, up to level 16. This will more closely follow the original progression.

Page 30, Mystic - Multiple Attacks:

   Another change from the Masters set, Mystics are NOT supposed to get their listed number of 
attacks when attacking with anything other than their bare hands. You can see this by looking 
at the description of the 7th level Mystic in the Monster section on page 195, where the 
number of attacks is listed as, "1 weapon or 2 hands."
   Mystics ARE supposed to gain the Fighter's Multiple Attacks option, which does apply to 
attacks with weapons (but not their unarmed attacks) as described on page 104. This will first 
be available at 12th level when 2 attacks per round are available. Since Mystics can't advance 
past 16th level, they would never gain more attacks.... However, you could allow them to 
continue to gain more attacks as they gain more XP past their maximum level (as Demi-Humans 
do). A Mystic would gain more attacks at the same XP totals a Fighter normally would (i.e., 3 
attacks at 2,040,000 XP, and 4 attacks at 3,480,000 XP).

Page 31a, Mystic - Finishing Details:

   Though the Rules Cyclopedia mostly does a good job bringing everything together into a 
fleshed out Mystic character class, the basic guidelines for doing so in the Master's Set 
concluded with, "Whenever developing a new character class, remember to keep the abilities of 
these new characters in balance with those of the other classes." The Mystic, as a "monster" 
in the Master's set, made potent allies or opponents for high-level characters, but when 
developing them into a character class, some changes do need to be made to keep them balanced 
against the other classes. The following section contains a couple of suggestions in that 
regard, along with several other finishing details.

Hand Attacks

   The Mystic's unarmed attacks are the main concern when balancing them against the other 
classes; at the higher levels they really get out of control. For example, the average damage 
a 20-36th level Magic-User can do with a Fireball is 70, and although it affects multiple 
targets, they each get a Saving throw for half damage. A 16th level Mystic can inflict an 
average of 78 points of damage every round with his bare hands! This can be brought into 
balance by placing limits on how the Mystic can make use of his multiple unarmed attacks. Here 
are my suggestions:

   A Mystic may make up to his total number of unarmed attacks each round UNTIL he scores a 
hit. For example, a 9th level Mystic may make up to 3 unarmed attacks each round. If he hits 
with his first attack, he may make no further attacks. If he misses with the first swing, THEN 
he may make his second attack, and so on. Note that a hit is not actually scored if the attack 
is Deflected by the opponent (see Weapon Mastery and Deflect in the entry for pages 80-81).
   However, as with the Fighter's Multiple Attack option, if the Mystic can hit his opponent 
with an attack roll of 2 (after all modifiers), then he may make up to his maximum number of 
attacks on that target even after scoring a hit.
   In circumstances where the Mystic must give up a number of attacks during a round, the 
attacks are first taken from his maximum number of attacks. For example, using some of the 
fighting styles detailed in the next entry, a Mystic has to give up an attack each time he 
successfully Deflects. So if a 7th level Mystic (maximum of 2 attacks per round) Deflected one 
of his opponent's attacks, the Mystic would still be left with 1 attack available when his 
next attack step came up. 

   Also, when using his Martial Arts, a Mystic may make no other type of attacks during the 
round (he can't make an additional off-hand Strike attack, for example). The Mystic's unarmed 
attacks will not combine with the Fighter Combat Options either (e.g., Smash, Parry, Disarm); 
those are only available when fighting with weapons or normal unarmed Strikes.

   With these changes, the 16th level Mystic will now do an average of 19.5 damage each round 
(much more balanced against other high-level characters), but will still have vastly improved 
chances of hitting, since he gets up to 4 swings.

   I'd also suggest that a Mystic, when using his unarmed attacks, could choose to inflict 
damage as if he were any level lower. For example, a 16th level Mystic could choose to inflict 
only 1d4 damage with his unarmed attack (like a 1st level Mystic does), rather than 3d12 
damage, in case he doesn't want to kill his opponent.


   At the top of page 31, the Rules Cyclopedia offers the suggestion of simply having the 
Mystic make a Dexterity Check to use his Acrobatics ability. I recommend following that 
suggestion. Otherwise, someone who has taken the Acrobatics General Skill could perform some 
of the same things as the Mystic, but with a better chance of success. The Mystic must take on 
a hefty -20% XP penalty for his Acrobatics ability, and the formula given here for Acrobatics 
will practically always produce a chance that is lower than the Mystic's chance of just making 
a simple Dexterity check. The Mystic would be better off taking the cheaper General Skill 
   The DM can always modify the chances if he deems the difficulty of the action calls for it, 
but for most Acrobatic feats, the Dexterity Check should be fine and is much less complicated.

   I also offer some additional optional abilities available to Acrobatic Mystics, to make 
sure this ability is superior to the inexpensive Acrobatics General Skill. Some of these are 
based on abilities from the original D&D Blackmoor Monk and the Gremlin class from PC2 Top 

   Jumping - No matter how fast a non-Acrobatic Mystic can move, he can jump no farther than 
the maximum distances achievable by other unencumbered characters with a 120' movement rate 
(see the entry for page 88 about Jumping & Leaping). An Acrobatic Mystic, however, has special 
training allowing him, on a successful Acrobatics Check, to make impressive jumps based on his 
FULL movement rate (encumbrance permitting). He can do flips, run along walls, pole-vault off 
a staff, or any other similar action needed to achieve such distances.

   Tumbling - As with the Acrobatics General Skill, the Mystic can fall up to 10 feet without 
sustaining injury. On a successful check, he can ignore the first 10' of a fall by tumbling to 
minimize damage to himself. As he gains levels, he can fall even greater distances without 
sustaining injury. At 5th level, he can ignore the first 20' of a fall. This increases to 30' 
at 9th level, and 40' at 13th level. The Mystic will be able to control his descent by 
catching, swinging from, or otherwise slowing his fall by using any nearby wall, ledge, 
branch, or other object.

   Dodging - The Acrobatic Mystic has the same ability to Dodge as with the Dodge General 
Skill. He can gain a -2 bonus to his AC against up to 3 attacks per round by making a 
successful Acrobatics Check. As the Mystic gains levels, his Dodge becomes effective against 
more attacks each round. At 6th level the bonus is effective against up to 4 attacks per 
round. This increases to 5 attacks per round at 12th level. All other aspects of the Dodge 
General Skill apply; see the entry for page 83-85 for details.

Thief Abilities

   As I have seen suggested elsewhere, I recommend giving the Mystic the Hear Noise ability 
rather than Find Traps and Remove Traps. This seems more appropriate for Mystics, and keeps 
them from diminishing the usefulness of the Thief class.

Movement Rate

   There's no mention of how fast an ENCUMBERED Mystic can move.... Extrapolating from how 
encumbrance affects other characters' movement rates, you can use this table, multiplying the 
Mystic's unencumbered MV by these factors:

   Enc (cn)    MV Multiplier
    0 - 400       1
  401 - 800      .75
  801 - 1200     .5
 1201 - 1600     .25
 1601 - 2400     .125
 2401 +           0

   When using this ability, the Mystic is not just invisible; he's completely undetectable. 
Frank Mentzer has said that the Mystic should be considered utterly silent, and the Master 
DM's Book, page 33, notes that the Mystic cannot even be magically detected. 

Higher Experience Levels

   The battles to gain higher levels are supposed to work in the same way as for Druids (see 
the topic about Higher Experience Levels in the entry for page 28 about Druids).
   In these challenges Mystics may not use any of the Mystic Abilities (namely, Blankout and 
Gentle Touch). They may use all their unarmed fighting abilities though.

Page 31b, Mystic - Fighting Styles:

   The Mystic's unarmed attacks can hold their own against basic weapons, but when Weapon 
Mastery is used, the Mystic will find that his unarmed attacks are quite inferior through the 
lower to mid levels, when he could just as easily be using a sword along with Weapon Mastery 
to gain many benefits.

   The Cyclopedia didn't include the information, but the Master's set listed four styles of 
martial arts fighting for Mystics. The styles were only basically outlined, and left for the 
DM to develop. 

   Based on that information in the Master's Set, I've fleshed out the four fighting styles so 
that the Mystic's unarmed attacks become a more desirable choice even when Weapon Mastery is 
in play (though you can also use this option even if you're not otherwise using Weapon 

   A Mystic must declare which style he is using during the Intentions Step. All his attacks 
that round must use the same style. If no other choice is declared, Offensive is the default 

   Most of the styles are based on a certain weapon (including a cheesy-sounding name for each 
style), and will use Weapon Mastery special effects of that weapon. These special effects will 
automatically function at a level of Mastery based on the Mystic's Experience Level:


 Mystic  Mastery 
 Level   Effect
   1     Basic
   3     Skilled
   7     Expert
  11     Master
  15     Grand Master

   The Mystic may also cause Despair when using his Martial Arts, as described for Weapon 
Mastery on page 77.

The Styles:


    Offensive - Way of the Focused Fist 

    Damage    Special Effects
     Full     Can damage weapon-immune creatures

   This aggressive style of fighting causes damage by striking blows with the hand, foot, 
head, elbow, and other parts of the body. Use of offensive style can break boards and bricks. 
The Mystic launches direct attacks upon his opponent, doing increasing damage as he gains 
skill. By focusing his chi into his strikes, the Mystic can even damage creatures that are 
immune to normal weapons.

   - Use the standard hand attack table for this style. Also use the table on page 30 for 
hitting weapon-immune creatures (and do not apply that table to the other styles below, but 
remember that many special effects below do not need to inflict damage on such creatures in 
order to affect them).


    Wrestling - Way of the Binding Bola 

    lvl.  Damage   Special Effects
      1    1d2     Strangle(20), Entangle
      3    1d3     Strangle(20), Entangle, Save -1
      7   1d3+1    Strangle(19-20), Entangle, Save -2
     11   1d3+2    Strangle(18-20), Entangle, Save -3 
     15   1d3+3    Strangle(17-20), Entangle, Save -4

   This aggressive style of fighting is used to incapacitate a foe through lock holds (such as 
half nelsons), counter leverage, and nerve pinches. The Mystic strikes at specific pressure 
points, sometimes attempting to grasp and hold on to his opponent. Some masters of this style 
may be able to paralyse a foe so that the victim need not be held further.

   - The Mystic gains all the special abilities of the Bola (ignore the Secondary target 
information for the Bola), and inflicts the same damage as a Bola. The attack is always made 
against the standard AC of the target. The victim gets his usual Saving Throw with bonus to 
avoid special effects, as indicated in the Bola & Whip table. Special results will only last 
for one round unless the Mystic actively maintains the hold. This 'one round' effect is the 
result of a nerve pinch or pressure point attack from the Mystic, so cannot occur if the 
Mystic inflicts no damage. In that case (or when fighting creatures that may have no pressure 
points or nerves, such as a skeleton), the Mystic must maintain the hold to have any special 
   For as long as the Mystic wishes to maintain a hold, he must continue using this style and 
must give up one of his attacks each round. A held victim may break the hold with the usual 
Saving Throw at the end of his Hand-To-Hand phase each round, however, as long as the Mystic 
is holding him, the victim suffers additional penalties (for full details, see entry for page 
113 about being Entangled). 
   A victim being held with an Entangle result is treated as Fully Entangled (-4 to Saving 
Throws, opponents get +4 to hit him). 
   A victim being held with a Slow result is treated as Partially Entangled (-2 to Hit Rolls 
and Saving Throws, opponents get +2 to hit him). 
   A victim being held with a Delay result will not be able to concentrate, but has no 
additional penalties aside from the loss of initiative each round.
   These extra penalties will end as soon as the Mystic releases the victim or the victim 
breaks free. 
   If a Strangle result is achieved, the Mystic must give up all further attacks to maintain 
the hold until the victim is dead (unless the Mystic wishes to release the hold sooner, in 
which case the standard Paralysis occurs). 
   While maintaining any hold, if the Mystic is attacked by anyone he is not holding, treat 
the Mystic as if he is Prone against the new attacker (see page 150). If the Mystic has no 
more attacks available while he's maintaining a hold, he also loses his Dexterity adjustment 
to AC against the new attacker. However, if the Mystic does have enough attacks available, he 
can attack the new opponent while holding the old one, and might even score a hold on the new 
opponent as well.


    Defensive - Way of the Sweeping Staff

    lvl.  Damage  Special Effects
      1    Half   -2 AC
      3   (Round  -2 AC, Deflect (1)
      7     Up)   -2 AC, Deflect (2)
     11           -2 AC, Deflect (3)
     15           -2 AC, Deflect (4)

   With this reactive style, the Mystic moves in continuous, flowing motions, dodging or 
blocking attacks and turning them aside. The Mystic becomes a difficult target, and at higher 
levels can Deflect many incoming attacks by making circular sweeps with his hands. 

   - When using this style, the Mystic gains a -2 AC bonus and the Deflect abilities of a 
Staff. This style, like a Staff, is Two-Handed; the Mystic will always lose initiative to 
opponents who are using One-Handed attacks (this style usually involves waiting and reacting 
to an attack, by dodging or turning the attack aside). The Mystic may still make his usual 
unarmed attacks, but will inflict only half normal hand damage (round up). If the Mystic 
successfully Deflects any number of attacks, then during his next attack step he must give up 
one of his attacks for each attack he deflected.


    Throwing - Way of the Hooking Halberd

    lvl.  Damage  Special Effects
      1     1     Hook, Disarm
      3           Hook(Save -1), Disarm(Save +1)
      5     2
      7           Hook(Save -2), Disarm(Save +2), Deflect(1)
      9     3
     11           Hook(Save -3), Disarm(Save +3), Deflect(1)
     13     4
     15           Hook(Save -4), Disarm(Save +4), Deflect(2)

   This reactive style turns the momentum of the attacker against him by tripping, pushing, or 
throwing the opponent. As the Mystic strikes, he grasps at the opponent (or the opponent's 
weapon) and attempts to push, pull, or throw the opponent (or weapon) to the ground. 
Successful use of this style can allow a Mystic to Disarm, or leave the opponent Prone and 
unable to properly defend himself on the following round. The Mystic can also occasionally 
Deflect an attack by pushing it aside.

   - The Mystic gains the special abilities of the Halberd. This style, like a Halberd, is 
Two-Handed; the Mystic will always lose initiative to opponents who are using One-Handed 
attacks (this style usually involves waiting and reacting to an attack, by using the 
attacker's momentum against him). When using the Hook attack, the Mystic will only inflict 
damage equal to his total number of hand attacks. If the Mystic successfully Deflects any 
number of attacks, then during his next attack step he must give up one of his attacks for 
each attack he deflected.

Martial Arts Matches

   When Mystics fight each other, the mechanics of Dominance come into play depending on which 
style each Mystic (secretly) selects during the Intentions step.

   Offensive > Wrestling 
   Wrestling > Defensive 
   Defensive > Throwing 
   Throwing  > Offensive

   Offensive = Defensive
   Wrestling = Throwing

   If a Mystic has chosen the style dominant to his opponent's style, he gains +2 to hit. If 
he hits, his opponent must make a Saving Throw vs Spells; if the Save fails, the attack 
inflicts double damage and the victim receives a -2 penalty to any Saving Throws against that 
attack (including Deflect attempts).

   If a Mystic has chosen a style that is weak against his opponent's style, he receives a -2 
to hit. If he hits, his opponent gets to make a Saving Throw vs Spells; if the Save succeeds, 
the attack only inflicts half damage (round down) and the opponent gains a +2 to any Saving 
Throws against that attack (including Deflect attempts).

Page 32, Spellcasting:

Casting Spells

   A spellcaster only needs one free hand to cast a spell. This was stated in D&D Adventure 
Module X12, Skarda's Mirror (by Aaron Allston), on p.29, and also on p.47 of the D&D FAQ. 
Thus, a caster can hold a dagger or staff or other weapon, and still cast his spells. It's not 
unreasonable, though, to say that very powerful (high-level) spells will require that both the 
caster's hands be free to gesture. 

   It's important to note that in order to target something with a ranged spell, the caster 
MUST be able to SEE the target, or at least some part of the target. Spells with an area of 
effect, on the other hand, can easily affect targets the caster can't see.

   When casting a spell, to state it explicitly, the spellcaster must be able to gesture and 
speak freely, and he must stand completely still and may not perform any other action that 
round aside from casting the spell. Taking any damage that round, failing any Saving Throw, or 
even being shoved before the spell is completed will disrupt the spell. Compare this against 
activating a magical item (see entry for p.228).
   Ok, this really needs a clear definition, since the term is used all over the place, often 
with very different requirements. 
   Concentration will count as your action (often referred to as your "attack") for the round, 
but doesn't necessarily stop you from moving. The exception to it counting as your "action," 
is for the Fly spell, in which case the concentration is used in place of your movement 
instead, and does NOT prevent you from taking an action (see p.114 about aerial combat). This 
can be applied to any other effect that requires concentration for movement, such as 
levitation or items that move you magically (e.g., Broom of Flying) -- instead of the 
concentration counting as your action, it replaces your normal movement.
   Otherwise, the concentration counts as your action, and unless the description for a 
certain effect specifies that your movement is restricted (indicating that it's a more intense 
concentration), you can still move normally. Note that this does NOT include running, because 
after running you can't perform an action that round, including concentration. Also note that 
most effects requiring concentration will not be negated by a temporary loss of concentration, 
unless the description indicates otherwise (i.e., any interruption in concentration will 
disrupt a spell being cast, or cause the loss of control of an Elemental, but taking a hit 
while you are concentrating on activating a magical item usually won't prevent the activation 
of the item from happening).

Touch Range Spells

   To clear up any possible confusion, and allow a bit more lenience for casting these spells, 
I suggest the following rules, adapted from the description of Touch Dispel (see entry for 
Page 48):

   Upon casting any Touch Range spell, if the caster doesn't touch his target right away, the 
spell remains on the caster's fingertips (most likely on only ONE of his hands, not both, 
unless he decides otherwise) until a valid target object is touched (touching a door won't 
release a Cure Light Wounds spell, since a door is not a valid target of that spell). Touching 
any valid creature or object releases the effect; it cannot be suppressed (so don't scratch 
your nose after casting Cause Serious Wounds). The effect can be Dispelled if not immediately 
released. The spell effect vanishes from the fingertips in one Turn if not used within that 
time. The spell also vanishes if the caster casts another Touch Range spell (the new spell 
effect replaces the old one, even if the caster tries to place the new effect on a different 
hand). Other spells may be cast normally. Detecting Magic will most certainly reveal a caster 
who has a Touch Range spell prepared (glowing hand!).

   Making an attempt to touch an opponent during the same round the spell is cast can be 
considered part of the standard process of casting the spell. On subsequent rounds, if he has 
not released the charge, the spellcaster can use an unarmed strike (see Unarmed Combat, p.110) 
to deliver the Touch Ranged spell to a target at the same time as inflicting damage for the 
unarmed attack (D&D FAQ p.48). The touch attack is always made against the target's normal AC.

Page 33, Reversible Spells:

   Whether or not you have to be of 4th level to Reverse spells has changed from edition to 

   I would suggest that for the Rules Cyclopedia, because a level limitation isn't mentioned 
anywhere, you can just assume there is no level limitation. Then it will work the same as in 
very early editions of D&D, and allow low-level Chaotic Clerics to use the "evil" versions of 
their spells right away.
   Adding to the notes on the next page (p.34) about spell reversal being restricted by a 
Cleric's Alignment, remember to apply this additional statement from the Expert Rulebook, p.3, 
"Neutral Clerics may choose to cast the normal or the reversed forms, but the Cleric must 
continue using the forms first chosen, and is not free to change from one to the other."

   I would treat each spell individually in regard to this. In other words, if a Neutral 
Cleric first casts Cure Light Wounds in standard form, then that is the form he must continue 
using. If later, that same Cleric first casts Remove Fear in reversed form, then he must 
always use the reversed form of that particular spell. If Neutral Clerics had to choose either 
standard or reversed form, and apply that to all of their spells, that would upset the balance 
of Neutrality by shifting them too far toward either Law or Chaos....
   Note, however, that a few reversed Cleric spells are not "evil" versions of a "good" spell. 
For example, "Free Person" is the reverse of "Hold Person." The reversal of such spells 
probably shouldn't be restricted by alignment. These spells include Hold Person, Quest, 
Barrier, and Dispel Magic (see the entry for page 48 about Dispel Magic/Touch Dispel), and for 
Druids, the Dissolve spell (see entry for page 42).

Page 34, Cure Light Wounds, Light:

Cure Light Wounds

   Similarly to how this spell can cure paralysis or the effects of being stunned, you may 
also want to allow it to remove the effects of Exhaustion (see page 88). If used in this way, 
it won't also cure damage or remove paralysis, but will reduce the amount of time the 
character needs to rest by 2-7 turns. If this reduces the required rest time to 0 or less, all 
effects of Exhaustion end immediately.
   Note that these additional effects are not limited to the Cure Light Wounds spell -- Cure 
Serious Wounds or Cure Critical Wounds could also be used to remove paralysis, for example.

Light (and Continual Light)

   There are different modes of operation for the Light spells that may need further 

   First off, apparently there are NO SHADOWS in an area affected by this spell.... The last 
paragraph in the description of a Halfling's Hiding ability on p.27 implies this. It is more 
strongly stated in the 1991 D&D Game Rulebook, p.11, "Also, if someone casts a magical Light 
spell in an area where the Halfling is 'frozen' in the shadows, the shadows disappear and the 
Halfling's presence is automatically discovered." 
   However, since there are two ways to cast the spell (either on an object or as an area 
effect), and since a popular practice is casting a Light spell on a small object, and then 
covering that object when the light needs to be hidden (which wouldn't work if there were no 
shadows...), you can allow the two modes to operate differently. 
   When the spell is cast as a stationary area effect, there will simply be no shadows in that 
area, and the light will seem to exist without any light-casting source. Hiding in the shadows 
will obviously be impossible in such an area.
   Whenever the spell is cast on a small object or at a creature's eyes, it will cause a 
bright glow to surround the object (if the object is not too large), or cause a glowing ball 
of pure light (about a foot in diameter) to be attached to the object at the target point. 
This light source WILL cast shadows as it illuminates the surrounding area. The object can be 
covered to hide the light, and this variation will not automatically ruin hiding attempts. 
However, I only recommend allowing this functionality for the Light spell, and not for 
Continual Light. If Continual Light is cast on an object or at a creature's eyes, it will 
still create the brightly-glowing light source as above, but it will also create the area 
effect (centered on the source point) which will penetrate solid objects and cast no shadows 
in the area, making it impossible to hide the light without magical means. I recommend this 
because the Continual Light spell has an unlimited duration and better range than Light. It 
would make it far too easy for anyone and everyone to carry around bright, everlasting light 
sources that remain easy to conceal, and which are freely created with a low-level spell.
   As for the reverse of the spell, Darkness, notice that it mentions infravision can 
penetrate the area when cast as an area effect, but if cast at a creature's eyes, it will 
blind the creature (creatures with infravision are not excluded from this blinding). Also, 
it's not specifically stated in the spell description, but the functionality of casting 
Darkness on an object (so that the spell effect moves as the object moves) can be inferred 
from reading the effect of the Onyx Dragon's breath on page 171.
   So again, I would suggest allowing the different modes of the spell to work a bit 
differently. I offer the following suggestions.... 
   When cast as a stationary area effect, it will function as stated. 
   When cast on an object or at a creature's eyes, it will create a tiny point that absorbs 
all light (even magical light) in the area around it. You might think of this as a mini, 
magical Black Hole effect; all light in the area will be gathered into that one point, and no 
light will escape outward from that point, so no light will be visible to anyone within the 
darkened area. If that point is attached to a creature's eyes, the creature might see that one 
bright point of light in a field of darkness. For creatures with infravision, that point of 
light would prevent the infravision from functioning, explaining why they are blinded in this 
   Whenever either of these spells is cast at a creature's eyes and the creature makes its 
Saving Throw, the spell "misses" and becomes an area effect version of the spell, centered 
where the creature was standing.
   Read the individual spell descriptions of Continual Light and Continual Darkness to note 
some other differences in functionality, e.g., Continual Darkness blocks all infavision (it 
may diffuse heat in the area), and only the Cleric's version of Continual Light is as bright 
as full daylight.

   Another issue that comes up is how the Light and Darkness spells interact with each other. 
Here are my suggestions:

   If a Light spell is cast as an area effect so that its volume contains the center point of 
any existing Darkness spell, both spells will be negated. The same applies to a Darkness spell 
cast as an area effect so that its volume contains the center point of any already existing 
Light spell. This works on a one-to-one basis; each Light spell will only negate one Darkness 
spell, and vice-versa.
   A Light spell cannot negate a Continual Darkness spell in this manner, nor can a Darkness 
spell negate a Continual Light. No spell is negated in these cases (or in such cases where a 
mobile Light spell passes through a Darkness area), and both spell effects will remain active 
for their usual durations, but one effect will temporarily overpower the other.
   A Darkness spell will overpower a Light spell, sucking up all magical light within the 
Darkness volume. A Continual Light spell will overpower a standard Darkness though, perhaps 
being dimmed within the Darkness radius to the level of a standard Light spell. But a 
Continual Darkness spell will overpower even a Continual Light.

Page 35, Protection from Evil, Hold Person, Snake Charm:

Protection From Evil

   The Cyclopedia has inconsistencies between the Cleric and Magic-User versions of this spell 
in regard to how the protection is broken against Enchanted creatures (check the last 
paragraph here and in the Magic-User spell on page 45). Actually, this aspect of the spell has 
changed in every edition of the game and has never been consistent from edition to edition.... 
The Cleric version of the spell in the RC describes the functionality I'd recommend using, but 
the wording is pretty messed up.... 
   For both the Cleric and Magic-User versions of this spell, I recommend using what is 
written in the 1991 D&D Game Rulebook, page 32, "If the caster attacks an enchanted creature 
during the spell's duration, the effect changes slightly. Enchanted creatures are then able to 
touch the caster, but the attack roll and saving throw adjustments still apply for the spell's 
   I would chose this as the best revision, and it is also more consistent with the 10' radius 
version of the spell.

Hold Person

   The Basic DM's Rulebook, page 17, is more specific in noting that the spell will not affect 
any creature with 5 or more Hit Dice. However, I believe this is only meant to apply toward 
humanoid monsters, not humans or demi-humans. So a PC can be affected by this spell regardless 
of his level.
   Frank Mentzer suggests that the reverse version of the spell, Free Person, will remove any 
form of magical paralysis (usually produced by spells, magic items, or spell-like abilities), 
but not paralysis that is based on poison (usually the result of attacks by certain creatures, 
such as a Carrion Crawler). Free Person has the same targeting limitations as Hold Person; it 
affects up to 4 humanoids with less than 5 HD, as noted above.

Snake Charm

   This spell is so specific that it is almost never used. I suggest expanding it to "Animal 
Charm" so that it is capable of affecting all types of animals, normal or giant-sized, in the 
same manner that it affects snakes.

Page 36a, Remove Curse, Striking:
(see entry for page 50 for Remove Curse)


   The Players's Guide to Immortals, p.20, states, "This effect is limited in application to 
non-living objects, and cannot be used to give damage bonuses to to the attack of any type of 
creature (including those of the non-living variety, such as golems)." This also indicates 
that the target of the Striking spell doesn't strictly have to be a "weapon."

Page 36b, Animate Dead:

   The rules for creating skeletons and zombies work fine when you are dealing with normal-
sized humanoid corpses, but when you start trying to animate the bodies of very large or non-
humanoid monsters, the results are not the same.

   Some basic guidelines can be derived by taking examples from the Master DM's book, p.44, 
"Zombie Minotaur," and the 1986 Creature Catalog, p.84, "Undead Dragon," and also by looking 
at normal Skeletons and zombies.

           Zombies                                  Skeletons
           ------------------------------------     ------------------------------------

AC:        Usually 1 point better than the          Usually 2 points better than the
           original monster. If the creature        original monster. Same rules as
           had special defenses (speed) or          for zombies apply here.
           natural armor (thick scales) that
           is now rotting away, the zombie's
           AC may actually be 1-6 points worse.

HD:        1/2 the HD of the original monster,      1/2 HD of original monster, rounded
           rounded up. Minimum of 2 HD, unless      down. May be as low as 1/3 to 1/4 HD
           monster is very small (rat zombie?).     of original. Usual minimum of 1 HD.

Move:      Typically the same as the original.      About 2/3 of the original creature's
           Flight will usually be lost, however.    movement, with a minimum of 60'(20').

Attacks:   Zombies will have at least one claw      Skeletons normally attack only with
           attack. Some natural attacks may         weapons, but some natural attacks
           carry over, along with weapon use.       may carry over.

Damage:    Usually 1-8 per claw. Other natural      Reduce damage to 1/2 or less
           attacks may have their damage reduced    for any natural attacks they are
           to 1/2 or less (rotting muscles).        able to use (no muscles!).

Save As:   Fighter of 1/2 the zombie's HD.          Fighter of 1/2 the skeleton's HD.

Turn As:   (suggested) For every 2 HD above the standard HD (which is 2 for zombie,
           1 for skeleton), bump them up 1 level on the Turning Undead chart:

           Zombie of:    Turns As:                  Skeleton of:   Turns As:
           -----------------------                  ------------------------
             2-3 HD      Zombie                        1-2 HD      Skeleton
             4-5 HD      Ghoul                         3-4 HD      Zombie
             6-7 HD      Wight                         5-6 HD      Ghoul
             8-9 HD      Wraith                        7-8 HD      Wight
             10+ HD      Specter                        9+ HD      Wraith
           -----------------------                  ------------------------

These undead also gain the following characteristics:

Morale: 12
Intelligence: 1
Alignment: Chaotic
Immunity to attacks that only affect the living (such as poison) and spells that affect the 
mind (sleep, charm, hold, discord, insanity, feeblemind, etc.)

   Since it's not stated anywhere, you may want to impose a limitation on this spell so that 
it only affects once-living creatures that were composed of flesh and blood and bones (this 
will exclude insects and lowlife and plant monsters, etc.).
   Finally, since this spell is generally considered chaotic, you can allow it to be cast in 
reverse form, as "De-Animate Dead." This will instantly de-animate skeletons and zombies (no 
Saving Throw) in the area of effect (a 60' radius). The number of HD affected is 3x the 
Cleric's level.

Page 37, Dispel Magic, Protection from Evil 10' Radius, Create Food, Insect Plague:
(for Dispel Magic, see entry for Page 48b)
(for Protection from Evil 10' Radius, see entry for page 49)

Create Food
   This spell can first be cast at level 10 (not 8), so the description should say, "For every 
level of the Cleric above 10th, the spell creates food for 12 additional men and mounts." 
   On page 125 we find that a mount consumes the same food as 2 men. The functionality of this 
spell would be more clearly stated by saying that the spell produces enough food for 36 men, 
and for each level of the Cleric above 10th, food for an additional 36 men is created. Mounts 
will simply eat as much as 2 men.
   See the table on page 125 for a complete rundown of how much food is produced according to 
the level of the Cleric.

Insect Plague
   This spell is very vaguely described in regard to what the exact effects are. Along with 
the description in the Rules Cyclopedia, you can use these effects which are mostly from the 
AD&D version of the spell:

    When this spell is cast by the Cleric, a horde of creeping, hopping, and flying insects 
gather and swarm in a thick cloud. In an environment free of normal insects, the spell fails. 
The insects obscure vision, limiting it to 10 feet. Spellcasting within the cloud is 
impossible. Although the insects inflict no actual damage to creatures, their bites can cause 
much irritation and discomfort. Invisibility is no protection. All creatures with 3 or fewer 
Hit Dice will automatically move at their fastest possible speed in a random direction until 
they are more than 120 yards away from the insects. This urge to flee is an extraordinary fear 
    Heavy smoke drives off insects within its bounds. Fire also drives insects away. For 
example, a Wall of Fire in a ring shape keeps a subsequently cast Insect Plague outside its 
confines, but a Fireball spell simply clears insects from its blast area for one round. A 
single torch is ineffective against this vast horde of insects. Lightning, cold, or ice are 
likewise ineffective, while a strong wind that covers the entire plague area disperses the 
insects and ends the spell.

Page 38, Raise Dead, Truesight, Barrier, Cureall:
Raise Dead

   The Unofficial Errata points out that Raise Dead should read, "A 10th level Cleric can 
raise a body that has been dead for up to four days. For each level of the Cleric above 10th, 
add four days to this time. Thus, a 12th level Cleric can raise bodies that have been dead for 
up to twelve days."

   "This effect also reveals the exact Hit Dice of those seen," - Players' Guide to Immortals, 
page 21.
   Although the duration of "1 turn + 1 round per level of caster" may seem a bit odd, Frank 
Mentzer has verified that it is not a misprint.


   Since this spell is meant to be a "barrier" rather than a direct attack spell, it is 
recommended that (as with other barrier-type spells such as Wall of Fire) this spell cannot be 
cast in a space occupied by another object or creature. 


   In keeping with this spell's stated effect of curing anything, it can be used to restore a 
petrified character to flesh.
   Additionally, the Players' Guide to Immortals, p.19, states that this spell can cure a 
maximum of 6 Hit Points per level of the caster. So if cast by a 12th level Cleric, it could 
cure 72 points of damage at most, while a 36th level caster could use it to cure up to 216 
points of damage. 
   These notes also apply to the Heal spell.

   I'd also recommend using 1d6-1 (0-5) HP as the amount that is left uncured, just so the 
possibility exists that the spell can actually "cure all" damage. 
   Frank Mentzer suggests that this spell will cure 100% of all damage for any recipient with 
up to 3 levels or Hit Dice. 

Page 39, Speak with Monsters, Earthquake, Raise Dead Fully, Holy Word, Restore:

Speak With Monsters

   "If the creator of this effect attacks the recipient while conversing, the effect ends 
immediately." - Players' Guide to Immortals, page 20.


   The Players' Guide to Immortals, p.19, specifies, "The exact amount of crushing damage 
inflicted upon a creature engulfed by a crack is 101-200 points of damage (1d100 + 100) per 

Holy Word

   The effect of this spell on level 13+ creatures seems more harsh than its effect on level 
9-12 creatures. I recommend swapping those effects, but also including the Deafness effect for 
all lower level creatures too, as shown here:


                   Holy Word Effects
 Level or HD   Effect
  Up to 5      Killed 
    6-8        Stunned 2d10 Turns + Deafened 1d6 Turns
    9-12       Stunned 1d10 Rounds + Deafened 1d6 Turns
    13+        Deafened 1d6 Turns

Raise Dead Fully
   Frank Mentzer has specified that this spell does affect a creature based on Hit Dice, not 
Levels. A 36th level character or Lich, for example, would have only 9 HD, so would make the 
Saving Throw at -4 if attacked with Obliterate or Raise Dead Fully.


   Restore is a bit more useful than indicated here, and can optionally be made even more so. 
   This spell can be used to restore one lost sense (see Revener, p.202), but as with 
restoring lost levels of experience, the Cleric should temporarily take on the loss himself 
for 2-20 days! So this spell will probably not be the first choice to use in cases where some 
other spell can restore the loss (e.g., Cure Blindness, Remove Curse, Cureall).
   You may optionally allow this spell to be used to restore 10 years of magical aging (see 
entry for page 143 about Magical Aging), but again, the Cleric will temporarily suffer the 
effects of whatever he restores.

   Conversely, the reverse version of this spell should be able to inflict anything that the 
standard version can restore. So a Chaotic Cleric might use this spell to age a victim 10 
years, or to drain one of the victim's senses (refer again to Revener to find the details of 
   As with the usual reversed version, casting any of these afflictions will not adversely 
affect the Cleric, and the victim touched gets no Saving Throw.

   See the entry for page 154 about Energy Drain for further notes regarding this spell.

Page 40, Wish:

   See the entry for page 61 for additional notes about Wish.

Page 41, Faerie Fire:

   The Player's Companion, p.14, originally said, "The object or creature need only be 
detected in some way (such as by Detect Magic) to be the target of this spell."
   The Rules Cyclopedia changed that to say "Detect Invisible," which actually weakens the 
spell. Going by the earlier wording, this spell allows targeting of creatures which cannot 
actually be seen (as long as they are somehow detected) which is normally not possible (see 
the entry for page 45 about Detect Magic). I would stick with the earlier functionality to 
make this spell more useful. Additionally, due to that exceptional nature, Faerie Fire might 
even allow further spells to target an otherwise-invisible creature (the glowing outline is 
much more specific than with Detect Magic).

Page 42, Dissolve:

   For some reason, the Rules Cyclopedia has removed the ability for Druids to reverse this 
spell. The Master Players' Book, p.5, clearly shows that this spell is reversable (as the 5th 
level Magic-User spell is) for Druids, stating, "The reverse of this spell, Harden, changes 
the same volume of mud to rock, but permanently. A victim in the mud may make a Saving Throw 
vs. Spells to avoid being trapped."

Page 43, Anti-Animal Shell, Creeping Doom:

Anti-Animal Shell

   The Cyclopedia shouldn't have specified "animal intelligence or less" as strictly "0-2" 
here, because animals can have varying Intelligence scores, some higher than 2. The same 
applies to the Hold Animal spell on page 42.

Creeping Doom

   Although it rightly should be quite powerful, Creeping Doom is really past the point of 
being unbalanced: it has a long duration, a potentially huge area of effect, is mobile, and 
does massive damage every round to everything in the area with no Saving Throw allowed. I 
suggest changing the functionality in a way that will balance it out nicely, yet still allow 
it to be powerful.
   Namely, allow the spell, as usual, to do 1 point of damage for every 10 insects in the 
swarm (round to the nearest 10 insects), but this should be the TOTAL damage inflicted each 
round, and can be divided in any way the caster chooses among any creatures within the area of 
effect. This way the caster can even direct the insects to avoid attacking an ally (or 
himself!) who is within the area of effect.
   During any round in which the caster is not directing the insects to attack in a certain 
way, the swarm will divide its damage as equally as possible among all creatures within the 
area -- though Small creatures should take a smaller percent of the damage and Large creatures 
should take a larger percent (more insects would naturally be crawling over the larger 
   Example: a halfling, a human, an ogre, and a dragon walk into a bar filled with a Creeping 
Doom spell. The DM decides the halfling should take 1/2 a "share" of Doom damage, the human 
takes 1 share (standard), the ogre takes 1.5 shares, and the dragon takes 2 shares (for a 
total of 5 shares). Having been hit with some fire attacks, the Creeping Doom has 900 insects 
remaining, so it can do a total of 90 damage this round. Divide the total damage by the number 
of shares, then multiply that result by the appropriate number of shares each creature 
receives to determine how much damage is inflicted. So 90/5 = 18, meaning the halfling takes 9 
damage, the human takes 18, the ogre takes 27, and the dragon takes 36. Of course, if the 
caster decides to command the insects to attack in a specific way, he could have all 900 
insects attack any one of the targets, or divide the damage in any other way he chooses.
   In regard to causing damage to the Creeping Doom, I suggest a straight "1 insect killed for 
each 1 point of fire damage dealt to the swarm." This means a Fireball spell will no longer 
kill a flat 100 insects. However, the Creeping Doom is not allowed to make Saving Throws so it 
will always suffer full damage from such fire attacks.

Page 44, Scrolls and Spellbooks:

Here is a clarification of how the rules work:

   Scrolls are "magically charged" transcriptions of spells. They can be cast right off the 
scroll, releasing their charge and causing the spell to fade from the scroll. This only 
involves reading the scroll aloud, not actually casting the spell (i.e., no hand gestures are 
needed), so it's more like activating a magic item than casting a spell, so is not 
interruptible in the same way as normal spellcasting (by loss of concentration, taking any 
damage, or missing any saving throw, for example).
   When a Magic-User copies a spell from a scroll into his spellbook, he is converting it into 
a memorizible code. The process of copying a spell from a scroll requires the magic to be 
released from the scroll so that the Magic-User can reverse-engineer the formula; this also 
causes the charge to be released and the spell to fade from the scroll. The new transcription 
in the spellbook will be "passive" and can no longer be cast just by reading it -- it must 
then be memorized to be cast. Likewise, further copying of the spell will not cause it to fade 
from the spellbook, and the new copy will also be "passive."
   Each Magic-User will have his own code for writing spells in his spellbook. Only the Magic-
User who copied the spell into his spellbook is able to read it without the use of a Read 
Magic spell. With the help of Read Magic, another Magic-User can copy a spell from someone 
else's spellbook into his own, converting it into his own code so that he can then memorize 
it. I recommend that this process takes time and money, which makes it no simple matter to 
freely trade or steal spells from the spellbooks of other Magic-Users (see the entry for page 
255 about Spell Research).

   Also see the entry for page 235 about Scrolls.

Page 45, Detect Magic, Light, Magic Missile, Protection from Evil:
(for Light, see entry for Page 34) 
(for Protection from Evil, see entry for page 35)

Detect Magic

   The word "visible" was added to Detect Magic's description, but it is not found in the 1983 
Basic set or in the 1991 D&D Game Rulebook, nor in any Clerical description of Detect Magic. I 
believe this was just sloppy editing in the Rules Cyclopedia, and by "visible," they actually 
mean, "within the caster's line of sight," (see the example they give about a magical item in 
a treasure chest).

   So yes, the caster will see a glow given off by items and creatures which are magically 
invisible. However, while this might reveal the presence of an invisible creature (which would 
at least allow you to attack it, with the usual penalties), the glow would not be specific 
enough to allow exact targeting of that creature for the purpose of most targeted spells (you 
normally have to see your actual target for such spells, not just a vague glow around the 

Magic Missile

   The duration of "1 round" is a misprint, carried over from the spell description in the 
Basic Player's Manual. The actual duration is supposed to be "1 turn," as can be seen on p.35 
of the Basic Player's Manual, and also more specifically on p.38 of that book, under the topic 
"Types of Spells," where it says, "a Magic Missile spell creates a glowing arrow that follows 
the magic-user around, either until it is shot or until a turn passes (10 minutes)." Frank 
Mentzer stated that this is the correct functionality.
   The "1 Turn" duration is also found the earlier Moldvay revision of D&D.
   But with that duration, I think Magic Missile will need some other stated limitation in 
order to keep it balanced. One option is to make the spell more like it was in some early 
versions of D&D, and consider it as summoning up some magical arrows for the caster to use 
(the Holmes-edited rules actually required a Hit Roll for each missile!), with a more standard 
rate of fire of 1 Missile per round (helping to keep it from getting overpowered at higher 
levels). Also, in order to make the spell more useful at lower levels (it IS a 1st level 
spell), I suggest starting it out with more than a single Missile. 
   Here is my suggested alteration for the spell:
   Magic Missile

   Range: 150'
   Duration: 10 minutes
   Effect: Creates 1 missile, +1 additional missile per level of the caster

   A Magic Missile is a glowing arrow, created and shot by magic. It has no solid form and 
cannot be touched, but will inflict 2-7 (1d6+1) damage to any creature or object it strikes.
   After the spell is cast, the arrow appears next to the spellcaster and hovers there (moving 
with him) until the spell duration ends or the spellcaster causes it to shoot. The missile may 
be shot immediately upon casting the spell, or during the Missile Fire portion of any 
following round. 
   A Magic Missile never misses, automatically hitting any one visible target the spellcaster 
specifies (either by brief concentration, or by simply pointing at a target and willing the 
arrow to strike). The target gets no Saving Throw.
   At the beginning of the round after a Magic Missile is shot, it will be replaced by a new 
arrow, which will also hover next to the spellcaster until shot. This will happen a number of 
times equal to the level of the spellcaster (so a 1st level magic-user will get 1 replacement 
arrow after he fires the original one). 
   No more than one missile will appear each round. Additional castings of the spell will 
simply add to the number of replacement missiles in reserve.

Page 46, Sleep, Detect Invisible, Invisibility:


   Some additional details describing the effect of a Sleep spell are found in the Basic DM's 
Rulebook, p.21:

   Undead are not affected, nor are magical or fantastic creatures (such as gargoyle, medusa, 
   A victim cannot be 'partially asleep.' For example, the spell is used against 5 Tiger 
Beetles (3+1 HD). You roll 14 (on 2d8). Four of the monsters fall asleep while the fifth 
attacks the party. The 'extra 2 Hit Dice' rolled are not used.
   If cast at a mixed group of creatures, the spell will affect the smallest ones first. 
Example: The spell is cast at a group of 3 bugbears (3+1 HD) and 2 ogres (4+1 HD). You roll 12 
on 2d8. All three bugbears fall asleep, but the ogres are not affected.

   I think the part about "magical or fantastic creatures" not being effected was just a broad 
statement meant for the Basic level of play, since monster categories such as Constructs (of 
which the Gargoyle is one) aren't named until later sets. Frank Mentzer has clarified that all 
Planar Creatures -- those who originally come from Planes other then the Prime -- should also 
be immune. The Medusa actually falls into this category.

Detect Invisible
   The description here comes from the Basic Players Manual, page 41, so does not include the 
additional information about this spell that came from references in later sets. The Truesight 
spell (p.38) notes, "the Cleric can clearly see all hidden, invisible, and ethereal objects 
and creatures as with the Magic-User Detect Invisible spell."  RC page 263 notes that, "An 
ethereal traveler cannot see into the Prime Plane unless he uses a Detect Invisible spell (or 
similar magical effect)." Also see the Potions of Blending and Sight for some additional hints 
at the utility of Detect Invisible.
   So Detect Invisible actually allows the caster to see into (or out of) the Ethereal Plane, 
thus allowing him to detect not only Ethereal creatures, but also creatures and objects that 
are not visible because they are hidden in darkness, for example. Frank Mentzer has verified 
that this is the intended functionality, and the AD&D version of Detect Invisible also 
functions similarly. 
   I visualize this as if the caster is seeing the area around him overlaid with the image of 
the Ethereal Plane, which appears as a ghostly white shadow image of the Prime plane. An 
invisible object or creature would stand out because the caster could see the ghostly shadow 
image of something that otherwise wasn't visible because of magic or darkness. 


   Frank Mentzer has stated that any object picked up by an invisible creature will also 
become invisible. 
   He also suggests that in addition to attacking or casting a spell, using any other magic 
(including magic items) will cancel invisibility. 

Page 47, Mirror Image, Phantasmal Force, Web:

Mirror Image

   The images are treated as actual "targets," and so can thwart spells that would normally 
never miss, such as Magic Missile. Even Touch Range spells will dissipate from the caster's 
hand if one of the images is touched (D&D FAQ v3.5, p.34-35). 

Phantasmal Force

   The spell's stated effect is not very clear in some ways. My interpretation is that the 
illusion has to fit within a 20' cube, but that cube can move around within the range of the 
spell. So illusionary monsters could be directed by the Magic-User to walk around within the 
240' range, but if the caster were creating the illusion of more than one monster, those 
monsters couldn't be more than 20' apart, because the spell can't affect a larger area than 
   Also, I recommend that the caster should be able to walk at half normal movement while 
concentrating on the spell, just as with the Wand of Illusion on page 236.

   The exact effect of being caught in a Web spell is not really noted. Also, no Saving Throw 
is mentioned here, but that would make the spell too powerful. Apply the following rule, from 
the 1991 D&D Game Rulebook, p.34, "Targets can make only one Saving Throw vs. Spells to escape 
a web. Once stuck, they must fight their way out." 
   The Player's Guide to Immortals, p.21, gives a more-detailed chart for how long it takes a 
creature to break free of the Web:

 Strength  Time Required

   0      Spell duration
  1-3       5-30 turns
  4-8       3-18 turns
  9-12      2-8 turns
 13-15      1-4 turns
 16-17      5-30 rounds
  18         4 rounds
 19-20       3 rounds
 21-23       2 rounds
 24-27       1 round

   For some specific effects that can be applied to characters who fall victim to this spell, 
see the entry for page 113 about the effects of being fully entangled.
   A Web effect is normally going to block all Missile Fire through the area. 
   Note that if a creature is caught in the middle of this spell's area of effect, it would be 
pretty difficult for creatures outside the area to attack the trapped creature without 
becoming entangled themselves, unless they have very long thrusting weapons. 

Page 48a, Fireball, Fly, Haste, Hold Person:
(for Hold Person, see entry for page 35)


   The first sentence of Fireball in the Basic DM'S Rulebook, p.18, contains a few extra words 
that aren't found in other sources, but are actually rather important, "This spell creates a 
missile of fire which explodes into a ball of fire of 20' radius when it reaches the desired 
range or strikes a target." The extra few words (about the desired range) indicate that a 
Fireball doesn't actually have to strike a target to explode; it can also explode in an 
unoccupied location at a range the Magic-User chooses, within 240'. Most players probably know 
this, but there is the actual rule that states it.


   The Basic Dungeon Masters rulebook, page 18, contains one additional note that says the 
exact duration of the spell is not known to anyone but the DM (who makes the roll secretly).
   As with the Levitate spell, you might want to state that a character can only carry a 
normal amount of weight while flying, or no more than 2,400 cn.


   See p.147 in the Rules Cyclopedia for more effects of being Hasted/Slowed, and also see the 
entry for page 147 in this document.

Page 48b, Dispel Magic:

   Dispel Magic needs a revamp in order to bring all the different/contradictory rules 
together. For example, under "Spells of Variable Power Levels," p.252, the last two sentences 
say, "Also, when beginning to create magical items, become familiar with the Dispel Magic 
spell description (in Chapter 3). It describes what happens to permanent items when struck 
with Dispel Magic spells." However, on page 48 it just says, "Dispel Magic will not affect a 
magical item (such as a scroll, a magical sword, etc.)." But then on p.255, it states under 
"Dispel Magic Attacks" that a magical item (a magical flying ship, no less) CAN be deactivated 
for 1-10 rounds if a Dispel Magic spell successfully affects it.

   So, bringing all these rules together, and mostly using the Dispel Magic/Touch Dispel 
description from the Master DM's Book, p.6, along with a little inspiration from Anti-Magic 
effects on p.143, here's my suggestion for the spell:

Dispel Magic

   This spell is an extremely powerful tool when used by high-level casters. Note the 
following guidelines for its use.
   When a Dispel is cast, its impact on each spell effect within the area must be considered. 
Any spell effect created by another character of a level equal to or less than the caster of 
the Dispel is automatically and instantly destroyed. A spell effect created by a higher level 
caster might not be destroyed but the chance of the dispel failing is only 5% per difference 
in the casters' levels. 
   Special note: Dispel Magic cannot dispel Curses, Quests, or Geas effects.

   Although Dispel Magic can't destroy magical items in its area of effect, it CAN affect a 
magical item's ability to produce spells or spell-like effects (a weapon's pluses are not 
affected). A magic item may resist the dispel effect equal to its inherent magic level as 
defined below. If the Dispel Magic is successful, the item cannot be activated for 1-10 
rounds, although it remains magical. Also apply the rules below for a magical item inside a 
non-magical container; within a Dispel's area of effect, a magical item in a backpack is less 
likely to be affected than an item out in the open. You would normally only need to check an 
item if a character intends to use it within 10 rounds (so you don't end up rolling for every 
magical item a character is carrying). For any item to be affected, it must be completely 
within Dispel's 20' x 20' x 20' volume. 

   Note that Dispel Magic spells produced from a Ring of Spell Storage are treated as if the 
caster were 5th level (if a Magic-User spell) or 8th level (if a Clerical spell).
   A staff of dispelling produces its effect as if a 15th-level caster. It has the additional 
power of destroying temporary magical items, and even temporarily deactivating permanent 
magical items, if it touches the object.
   The DM may decide to optionally add this effect to the spell use. The caster could then 
cast Dispel Magic in concentrated form, so that it remains on the caster's fingertips until an 
object is touched. This altered form is called a Touch Dispel, and is treated as if a reversed 
spell, even though the effect is not the reverse. A Magic-User must memorize the spell in this 
special form for it to be usable in this way; a Cleric may alter the casting of any Dispel 
Magic already memorized. 
   Touching any creature or object releases the effect. The Touch Dispel cannot be suppressed. 
The effect can itself be dispelled if not immediately released. The spell effect vanishes from 
the fingertips in one turn if not used within that time. The touch dispel also vanishes if the 
caster attempts to cast another spell (both spells are negated).
   Touch Dispel can affect only one magical item. If two or more items are touched at the same 
instant, the one affected is determined randomly.
   Touch Dispel is subject to the same chance of failure as the normal form of the spell (5% 
per level difference against items made by higher-level casters).

Effects on Items

   A Touch Dispel may destroy any temporary magical item or temporarily deactivate any 
permanent magical item. A magic item may resist the dispel effect equal to its inherent magic 
level as defined below.
   A magical item within a non-magical container can be affected if the container is touched, 
but the container doubles the level of the magical item. Multiple non-magical containers each 
double the magical item's level. Touch Dispel can never be transmitted more than 5 feet 
through such multiple containers. For example, a potion is normally found in a vial. If the 
potion liquid is touched, its listed value of 6th level is used, but if the vial is touched, 
the potion within is treated as 12th-level magic. If the vial is within a backpack and that 
backpack is touched, the magic is treated as 24th level.
   If a non-magical container holds two or more magical items, only one item can be affected 
by a Touch Dispel applied to the container. The item affected is determined randomly.
   If a magical container is subjected to a Touch Dispel, it is the recipient of the effect, 
and any items it contains are not affected.

Specific Item Notes

   Potion: Treat as 6th-level magic. If the Touch Dispel succeeds, the magic is destroyed, 
leaving a flavored, colored, non-magical liquid.

   Scroll: A scroll is given an effective level equal to the spellcaster level at which the 
highest-level spell contained may first he cast (but a minimum of 6th level; see entry for 
page 235 about Scrolls). Success destroys all the spells on the scroll, but not the parchment 
itself; failure means that no change occurs. Individual spells cannot be removed in this way; 
all the spells either remain or vanish.

   Wand or Staff: These charged items are treated as 12th-level magic. If the Touch Dispel 
succeeds, the item is deactivated (becomes non-magical) for 1-10 rounds, AND a number of 
charges equal to the caster's level are drained from the item. If the number of charges 
reaches zero, the magic is gone, leaving a non-magical item.

   Permanent Item: This category includes rods, rings, armor, shields, and weapons. If the 
item creator's level is known, that level is used. Otherwise permanent items are treated as 
18th level magic, unless the item description specifies otherwise. In addition, one level is 
gained per plus and per each additional power. If the Touch Dispel succeeds, the item is 
deactivated (becomes non-magical) for 1-10 rounds. The item's powers resume after this 

   Miscellaneous Magic: If the item creator's level is known, that level is used. Otherwise 
treat it as a permanent item (18th level) unless the DM decides it is an ancient or powerful 
item (for example, Undersea Boat, Elemental Summoning devices, Efreeti Bottle, Slate of 
Identification, Wheel of Fourtune, etc.) in which case treat it as 36th-level magic. If the 
item has a number of charges, apply the procedure given for wands and staves, above. If not 
charged, it is a permanent item. If the item is destroyed in the course of its one and only 
use (such as an egg of wonder), it is considered to have one charge.

   Undead: The description for the Animate Dead spell indicates that animated Skeletons and 
Zombies can be destroyed by Dispel Magic. If the level of the animator is known, that level is 
used as the creature's inherent magic level for the purpose of resisting the Dispel. 
Otherwise, Skeletons and Zombies should be treated as a minimum of 8th level magic if animated 
by a Cleric, or 9th level if animated by a Magic-User (these are the minimum levels needed to 
cast Animate Dead). Only animated Skeletons and Zombies are susceptible to Dispel; more 
powerful types of undead are unaffected.

   Created Creatures: Any creatures created by spells such as Create Normal Monsters, Create 
Magical Monsters, Create Any Monster, or Create Normal Animals can be dispelled like any other 
spell effect. They can also be blocked by Protection From Evil or Anti-Magic Shell spell 
effects (see the last paragraph of the Create Any Monster spell, page 59).
   Constructs: You might allow Dispel Magic to affect magically animated Constructs as well, 
since these are akin to "permanent magic items." As is usual, a standard Dispel would only 
prevent a Construct from activating spell-like abilities for 1-10 rounds, while a Touch Dispel 
could temporarily deactivate the Construct, causing it to remain motionless for 1-10 rounds. 
If the Construct creator's level is known, that level is used as the creature's inherent magic 
level. Constructs should be treated as a minimum of 18th level, or the HD of the Construct, 
whichever is greater.
   The Undead Beholder is the only listed construct that should be immune to Dispel Magic; see 
the entry for page 253.

Page 49, Protection from Evil 10' Radius, Confusion, Dimension Door:

Protection from Evil 10' Radius

   There are some uncertainties in the wording of this spell, but Frank Mentzer has given 
clarifications as to how it should function. 
   First, for determining what creatures are affected, it works just like the Invisibility 
10' Radius spell (top of the same page); ALL creatures within 10' of the caster at the time of 
casting are protected. If a creature moves more than 10' away from the caster, he will lose 
his protection, and cannot regain it by returning to the area. Note that the "10' radius" only 
describes the area for determining who is protected by the spell; it's is not an actual 
barrier that prevents any enemies from entering the area.
   Next, you should just disregard the statement that says the spell protects against attacks 
from monsters of a different alignment than the caster. That functionality was from earlier 
versions of D&D, and (based on Frank Mentzer's comments) was probably accidentally slipped 
into the Expert Rulebook by an editor, then carried over into the Cyclopedia. The definition 
of "evil" for this spell is much broader, similarly to the Detect Evil spell (i.e., from the 
caster's perspective, any creature that wants to harm him is evil).
   So, the -1 penalty to hit will apply to ALL attacks (as correctly stated later in the 
spell) made by non-protected creatures against those who are protected. The +1 bonus likewise 
applies to all Saving Throws resulting from effects produced by non-protected creatures, or 
other environmental hazards.
   Note that the spell will NOT protect any of the protected creatures from each other. If an 
enemy is inside the area of effect when the spell is cast, it becomes one of the protected 
creatures, meaning it can freely attack any of the other protected creatures without penalty!
   All other aspects of the spell remain the same (e.g., a non-protected Enchanted creature is 
prevented from touching the protected creatures, unless it is first attacked by one of them).


   The description of the Confusion spell is a bit confusing!

   A few mechanics can be borrowed from the Sleep spell. The DM should roll 3d6 to find the 
total number of creatures that will be affected. The spell will then affect that many 
creatures at a time, maximum, if they are within the stationary area of effect, starting with 
the lowest HD creatures. If creatures move into or out of the affected area, they become 
included/excluded from the spell's effect.

Dimension Door

   The description of this spell may be a bit unclear, making it sound like a limited version 
of the Teleport spell, but the duration of "1 round" rather than "instantaneous" indicates 
that it functions differently. This can be explained by saying that it actually creates a 
small portal (a "Dimension Door," as the name states) that will remain open for one round, or 
until one creature steps through it.
   When used on an unwilling recipient, the caster causes the portal to appear right on top of 
the target. If the target creature makes its Saving Throw, that indicates the creature jumped 
away before the portal fully formed. However, the portal will remain open for one full round, 
leaving the possibility that it could still be used.
   The caster could likewise cause the portal to appear right on top of himself, leaving no 
chance for anyone to stop him from entering it once the spell is successfully cast.
   The "1 round" duration also leaves the possibility that this spell can be made permanent 
(via the Permanence spell).

Page 50, Polymorph Spells, Remove Curse:

Polymorph Self, Other

   The rules never specifically say whether or not these spells affect the equipment carried 
by the recipient. Taken from AD&D, "When the polymorph occurs, the caster's equipment, if any, 
melds into the new form (in particularly challenging campaigns, the DM may allow protective 
devices, such as a ring of protection, to continue operating effectively)." This can also be 
applied to any shape-changing spell or potion (growth, diminution, elemental form, etc.), 
unless the effect description specifically says otherwise (as with the Potion of Gaseous 
   For some guidelines on what magical equipment might continue to function, see the entry for 
page 150b about Changing Form.

   Also, the Polymorph Self spell doesn't state this, but you should borrow from the 
description of Shapechange, p.60, "The caster may change shape at will during the spell's 
duration; each change requires a full round of concentration." This can also be inferred 
because the potion of Polymorph Self likewise states that the user can change shape once per 

Remove Curse

   The Player's Guide to Immortals, p.20, states that this spell is ineffective if the creator 
or caster of the Curse has (or had) more Hit Dice (or levels) than the caster of Remove Curse.

Page 51, Wall of Fire, Animate Dead, Dissolve:

Wall of Fire

   The extremely limited duration of this spell makes it a rather undesirable choice. It is 
suggested that the duration be extended to "Concentration + 1 Turn." i.e., The spell will last 
for as long as the caster maintains concentration on it, and once his concentration is broken 
or stopped (for whatever reason), the spell will continue to function for 1 Turn after that.

Animate Dead

   (See the entry for page 36.)

   Note that the description for Animate Dead here was just copied from the Cleric section, so 
substitute "Magic-User" each time the description says "Cleric." Also keep in mind that a 
Magic-User wouldn't view animating the dead in quite the same way as a Cleric would; the 
Magic-User's Animate Dead spell in the Expert rulebook didn't contain the last sentence that 
applies to Lawful Clerics being careful about the use of this spell. That doesn't mean a 
Lawful Magic-User wouldn't have other reasons, such as respect for the dead or the living 
relatives, for being careful about the use of this spell, but he probably wouldn't view it as 
"evil" in the same way a Cleric might.


   From the Unofficial Errata, "The spell's range, as first noted in its description, is 120'. 
The second value mentioned later in its description, 240', is incorrect."
   It's actually the Druid version of the spell that has a 240' range.

Page 52, Hold Monster, Telekinesis, Passwall, Wall of Stone, Woodform:

Hold Monster

   Frank Mentzer has stated that this spell, like the Hold Person spell, is supposed to affect 
up to 4 creatures when cast at a group (i.e., the caster selects the number of creatures 
affected, up to 4), not a random roll of "1d4" creatures.


   It is suggested that the duration of this spell be extended to "1 Round per level of the 
Caster," since "6 rounds" is too limited in comparison to the Ring of Telekinesis, which, 
although it isn't as effective, has an unlimited duration.


   A character who gets trapped in a reappearing Passwall effect doesn't actually die 
instantly. Since the spell doesn't affect living matter, the stone reappears around him, 
trapping him in place. He will then suffocate normally, unless somehow freed (by another 
Passwall or a Dissolve spell, etc.). 
   To determine how long it takes the unfortunate character to suffocate, use the rules for 
drowning on page 89-90.

   Also, the Player's Guide to Immortals, page 20, says, "Though this can never in itself 
inflict damage, this may cause a collapse of surrounding matter and the collapse may have 
damaging effects. The chance of collapse is equal to the percentage of the supporting base 
material removed by the effect."

Wall of Stone

   The notes about Stoneform in the entry for page 54 apply here as well; this spell produces 
the same volume of stone.


   Based on the "Wall, Wooden" listed on page 137, a structure created by a Woodform spell 
should have 30 Hit Points for each spell used. See the notes about Stoneform in the entry for 
page 54 for details (the Cyclopedia makes the same miscalculation here). Also see page 115-116 
for notes on damaging wood structures.

Page 53, Disintegrate, Lower Water:


   If a creature is Disintegrated, its equipment is unaffected (D&D FAQ, p.56).

Lower Water

   "The maximum depth of the 'hole' in the water is 500 feet." - Players' Guide to Immortals, 
page 19.

Page 54, Stone to Flesh, Stoneform, Wall of Iron:

Stone to Flesh

   Everyone understands the use of this spell to restore a petrified character, but what would 
happen if you turn normal stone to flesh? I suggest that it simply creates an Ochre Jelly 
(p.198), which is described as a giant amoeba, which is a single-celled organism, and a cell 
counts as flesh. Of course, the Jelly will likely attack the closest living creature... but 
that's still a way to get past stone walls....
   If the volume of stone is much less than a full 10' x 10' x 10', just use the stats for the 
smaller Jellies (in the case of a human-sized statue that was mistaken for a petrified 
character and became the recipient of this spell, for example). 

   See the entry for page 154 for further notes on petrification.


   The last paragraph should be mostly disregarded....  A wall does have an AC of -4 against 
missile attacks, and an AC of 6 against melee attacks, but to determine the Hit Points, you 
can't JUST look at the thickness of the wall... you have to consider the total volume. The 
Cyclopedia makes the mistake of saying that a stone wall will have 100 Hit Points for each 1' 
of thickness, but it is getting that information from page 137 by noting that a 5' thick stone 
wall has 500 HP.... HOWEVER, it is a 20' high wall that is 100' long that has a total of 500 
HP! A mere 10' section of that wall (20' x 5' x 10', which equals 1000 cubic feet -- the same 
volume of stone this spell will create) would have 50 Hit Points. So a Stoneform spell should 
create a volume of stone that has 50 Hit Points. When sections are joined together with 
multiple Stoneform spells each section will have 50 Hit Points. If you used 10 Stoneform 
spells to create the same 100' length of wall as listed on page 137, it would indeed have a 
total of 500 Hit Points.
   See page 115-116 for notes on damaging stone structures.

Wall of Iron

   The Players Companion book, p.21, states that the thickness of the wall should be 2" not 
2' (two inches, not two feet). Also check the Ironform spell (p.55) which uses the same 
   The information about structural damage is actually on pages 115-116, not page 118, 
however, there is really no information about damaging an iron structure. The description of 
Wall of Iron from the Players Companion, page 21, says, "The wall can only be damaged by 
battering. Giants inflict 1 point of battering damage per blow, and certain other creatures 
might damage it in other ways." This seems to indicate that all battering attacks will only 
inflict 1 point of damage per blow (including attacks from siege weapons, such as rams or 
catapults). Most other attacks and spells aren't even going to dent a wall of solid iron. 
   The table on page 137 shows that a typical wall has an AC of -4 against missile attacks, 
and an AC of 6 against melee attacks.

Page 55, Ironform, Lore, Mass Invisibility, Power Word Stun, Statue:


   The Fortifications Table does not actually give details about iron structures. I would just 
ignore the figures given here, and treat each separate Ironform spell the same as a Wall of 
Iron (see above), giving each section of a structure (i.e., each section that was created by a 
separate Ironform spell) Hit Points equal to the caster's level. The structure takes damage 
only from battering attacks, which do 1 point of damage per blow.
   The table on page 137 shows that a typical wall has an AC of -4 against missile attacks, 
and an AC of 6 against melee attacks.


   In the second paragraph, the number of days needed to complete the spell is not supposed to 
be rolled randomly on 1d100, but rather chosen by the DM. The Players Companion book, page 22, 
notes, "the spell may take 1-100 days to complete, depending on the number of details already 
   I would also suggest adopting restrictions such as from the AD&D spell Legend Lore, "During 
the casting, the wizard cannot engage in activities other than the routine: eating, sleeping, 
etc." Frank Mentzer also indicates that use of this spell (for things other than an object 
being held) often involves research at the library or other information sources.

Mass Invisibility

   The Cyclopedia omits a small note from the The Players Companion, page 22, which states 
that a horse is treated as 2 men when determining the number of creatures affected.

Power Word Stun

   In the Players Companion, page 22, there was an error in the listed "Duration" of the 
spell, saying "Turns" rather than "Rounds." The paragraph describing the spell's effect, 
however, stated the duration in "Rounds" twice. The Cyclopedia kept the error and also copied 
it into the description of the spell. Frank Mentzer has stated that the duration is, in fact, 
supposed to be in Rounds, not Turns.


   "The AC -4 given for the statue form supercedes the character's Armor Class, for better or 
worse." - Player's Guide to Immortals, page 20.
   The Cyclopedia is a little vague in the last sentence. The Players Companion, page 23, 
actually says, "The caster receives +2 to initiative when changing form." Basically, if the 
caster declares that he is changing form during the Intentions step (see entry for page 102a 
about Order of Combat), he gets a +2 to his initiative roll. Changing form does count as the 
players action for the round though, so he won't be able to suddenly change back from statue 
form and then attack in the same round.
   Additionally, I suggest that certain effects from spells and equipment could continue to 
function even in petrified form; see the entry for page 150b about Changing Form.

Page 58, Polymorph any Object:

   Completely disregard the last paragraph. It was not found in the Players Companion book, 
and as Frank Mentzer said, it wimps the spell out.

Page 59, Gate, Heal:


   The name of a resident of the Plane is not needed when opening a Gate to the Ethereal, 
Astral, or Elemental Planes; it's only needed when opening a Gate to an Outer Plane  (Players 
Companion, page 26).


   See the entry for page 38 for additional notes about Cureall, which apply to Heal as well.

Page 60, Shapechange:

   As noted here, when the caster is in the form of a bipedal humaniod, he can cast spells 
from his memory. However, there was a phrase added, "he can't cast from scrolls or his spell 
book," which didn't appear in the original spell description from the Players Companion. I 
believe this to be the result of sloppy editing, and should be ignored for a couple reasons.
   First, you don't "cast" spells from scrolls or spellbooks at all. A scroll is a magic item 
that is used by reading it, which releases a magical charge. And a spellbook is studied in 
order to memorize spells; you can't cast spells directly from it.
   Also (to paraphrase Frank Mentzer), if the Magic-User is able to cast spells when in the 
form of a bipedal humanoid, then he is considered a bipedal humanoid Magic-User. This 
indicates that he can still use magic items restricted to the Magic-User class, including 

Page 61, Wish:

   Some of the information here was obviously copied from the Cleric version of the spell. The 
correct information for Magic-Users can be found in the Master Players Book, page 10. A Magic-
User must have an 18 Intelligence (not Wisdom) to cast Wish. And unlike Clerics, a Magic-User 
may cast Wish starting at level 33 (not 36).
   The Rules Cyclopedia also left out some guidelines that were found in the Master Players' 
Book, "A Wish can be used, if the DM desires, to gain the use of a magic item for a short 
time. Generally, any magic item gained is borrowed from somewhere else, not created. Artifacts 
are beyond the power of Wishes. The caster may usually produce any item up to +5 enchantment. 
The item will remain for only 1-6 turns."
   Also, the paragraph that begins, "If one character casts a Wish to change another's 
character class," is supposed to be part of the preceding paragraph, and is supposed to be 
about changing another's RACE. There is no mention that it is possible to change Class alone 
with a Wish; it's only discussed as a side effect of changing the character's race. It is also 
noted, "Once a character's race is changed, two Wishes are needed to reverse the effect, and 
further changes each require double the previous number of Wishes used (4, 8, 16, etc.)."
   In regard to things that are normally unchangeable "even with a Wish," the Master Players' 
Book adds, "However, multiple Wishes may succeed (DM's choice) where one Wish would not." 
   The Book of Marvelous Magic, page 2, also notes that a Wish can be used to identify a magic 
item, revealing all command words for the item at once. The true nature of a cursed item, 
however, will not be revealed (see notes about cursed items in the entry for page 228).

   As an option, similarly to how Wishing for treasure costs the caster Experience Points, you 
might want to charge the caster like 5,000 xp (or more) for casting other powerful, permanent 
Wish spells (though it's probably not necessary for Wishes with temporary effects), especially 
in the case of allowing a spellcaster to use multiple Wishes to permanently raise his ability 
scores.... So, for example, if the caster wanted to raise a score from 14 to 15, he could be 
charged 5,000 xp for each Wish spell he casts in the process, for a total cost of 75,000 xp.

Page 62-63, Equipment:


   The money conversion chart is not as clear as it could be. It's more clear if you write 
down these values next to the abbreviations:

platinum pieces = pp =  5 gp
gold pieces     = gp =  1 gp
electrum pieces = ep = 1/2 gp
silver pieces   = sp = 1/10 gp
copper pieces   = cp = 1/100 gp

   The Rules Cyclopedia kind of glosses over the explanation for encumbrance. The Expert 
Rulebook, page 21, says, "Note that the encumbrance of an item is not always the same as the 
weight. It includes how awkward the item is to carry. A 10' wooden pole, for example 
(encumbrance 100 cn), weighs about 40 cn but cannot be as easily carried as 40 coins."

Missile Fire Devices

   As stated in item "a" of the Weapon Table Notes on page 63, the encumbrance of a standard 
load of ammunition is included in the listed encumbrance of each Missile Device. This was the 
convention used, for simplicity, back in the Expert Rulebook, but it only makes things more 
confusing now, especially with the even-more-confusing Ammunition Table on page 63. Separating 
the weapon and ammunition encumbrance values and revising the Ammunition Table will make 
things easier to keep track of. 
   Additionally, the cost of a load of Arrows or Quarrels includes a Quiver, the cost of a 
Sling includes 30 stones, and the cost of a Blowgun includes 5 darts.... I'll separate those 
costs as well, though I think a Sling should remain 2 GP, even without stones. 
   Also, the listed encumbrance of sling stones can't be correct.... A Sling plus 30 stones 
weights 20 cn. According to the values given in the Ammunition Table, a load of 30 stones 
weighs 6 cn, meaning the sling must weigh 14 cn.... I'll adjust these weights with more 
reasonable numbers.

   For easy reference, here are the values that should be corrected in the Weapon Table:


 Weapon            Cost  Enc.
 Bow, Short               10
 Bow, Long                20
 Crossbow, Light          40
 Crossbow, Heavy          70
 Sling               2     3
 Blowgun, up to 2'   2     5
 Blowgun, 2'+        5    14

And here's a revised Ammunition Table:


                      Ammunition Table

                  Cost    Enc.    Standard  Load    Load
 Type             Each    Each      Load    Cost    Enc.
 Blowgun Dart     2 sp   1/5 cn       5     1 gp     1 cn 
 Arrow            2 sp   1/2 cn      20     5 gp*   10 cn   
  Silver Arrow    5 gp   1/2 cn       -     -        - 
 Quarrel          3 sp   1/3 cn      30    10 gp*   10 cn      
  Silver Quarrel  5 gp   1/3 cn       -     -        -
 Sling Stone      2 cp   1/2 cn      30     1 gp**  17 cn** 
  Silver Pellet   1 gp   1/2 cn       -     -        -

* Load Cost includes the price of a Quiver. A loaded Quiver only weighs 10 cn.
** Load Cost includes the price of a cheap Beltpouch, which also adds 2 cn to the Load Enc.

Page 62-66, etc. Fixing Weapon Size Restrictions:

   There are numerous contradictions and ambiguities in the restriction of weapons based on 
size for Demi-Humans, so some house rules are needed here.

   I'll just state the recommended changes and new rules first, then give a description of why 
I've made these changes, and some examples of how they work.


Remember that:

Humans and Elves can use any size weapon, up to Large.
Dwarves can use any size weapon up to Medium.
Halflings can only use size Small weapons.


   On the Weapon Tables, p.62, and the Weapon Mastery tables, p.78-79, change the Spear and 
Bastard Sword to size Medium weapons, and change the Short Bow and Javelin to size Small 

   Just to add credibility to these changes, the 1991 Dungeons & Dragons Game Rulebook, p.13, 
lists Spear as size Medium, and Short Bow as Small. And I'll cite AD&D as having the Bastard 
Sword as size Medium, which makes sense, because it is lighter and more balanced than a two-
handed sword. I have no reference for the Javelin, but things will work out better if the 
Javelin is considered size Small, since it quite light, and usable by small races. Weapon 
"sizes" didn't even appear until the Master's set, in the Weapon Mastery table, and aside from 
limiting what race can use a weapon, the size of a weapon affects little else.... So these are 
just minor changes.

New Rules:

   One-Handed weapons that are one size larger than normally allowed for a race, may be used 
with two hands, and are treated as a Two-Handed weapon for that race (always lose initiative 
against One-Handed weapons).

   Two-Handed weapons which are one size larger than normally allowed, may be used as a Two-
Handed weapon with -3 to hit, and will lose initiative even against other Two-Handed weapons 
that are being wielded normally.


   With those changes, everything will work out. You can apply these rules to other small 
races as well, or even to humans that find Giant-Sized weapons.

   Now, here are all the problems that these changes will fix....

   A lot of the weapon restrictions for Dwarves and Halflings are ambiguous or contradictory.


   RC p.26 says A Halfling can use any small melee weapon and may use Short Bows and Light 
Crossbows. It also says Halflings can Set Spear vs. Charge.

   RC p.62 lists Spear as a Large weapon (Halflings can't use large weapons) and also lists 
the Bastard Sword as Large, but the note on p.62 for a Bastard Sword in 1H mode says that 
Halflings and other small creatures CAN use it. The short bow has the 2H note, which says 
Halflings can't use it.

   RC p.64, the description of a Light Crossbow says that Halflings cannot use it.

   RC p.66, the descriptions of a Bastard Sword says that Halflings cannot use it.

   Likewise, a Dwarf is only supposed to be able to use Medium-sized weapons or smaller, but 
on p.65 in the description of Polearms (which are Large, Two-Handed weapons), it says Dwarves 
can use them... it also says Dwarves get a -3 penalty to hit with them.
   Also remember a Spear is listed as a size Large weapon... which should prevent a Dwarf from 
using it, even though Dwarves can also Set Spear vs. Charge.

   So... I tried to tie up these loose ends while changing as little as possible to the rules, 
and this system makes everything fit into place nicely.

Some specific weapon notes:

   The Lance is a Large, One-Handed weapon, but can only be used from horseback, so these 
rules don't apply to it (see the page 64 entry for Lance).

   For Small creatures, a Light Crossbow can be used Two-Handed, but reloads as a Heavy 
Crossbow (no -3 to hit for them though, because it normally can be fired One-Handed, even 
though it takes two hands to reload).

   The Bastard Sword has two different modes of use. It's treated as two separate weapons on 
the Weapon Mastery table, so just determine which mode (1H or 2H) is being attempted, and 
apply the appropriate rule. A Bastard sword used by a Small creature in 1H mode requires Two 
Hands to use, but doesn't suffer the initiative loss penalty (this is a special property of 
the Bastard Sword, even in 2H mode). But if the Small creature shifts its grip and tries to 
use it in 2H mode (using more of the blade's weight in the swing) he gets the -3 to hit and 
loss of initiative penalties (This was partially inspired by some Sage Advice columns from 
Dragon Magazine about Small creatures using a Bastard Sword in AD&D).

For the former contradictions:

   A Dwarf can use a Spear normally, no problem.
   A Dwarf can also use Polearms the same as before, with the -3 penalty to hit (the -3 
penalty in my new rules was taken directly from the Dwarf's use of the Polearm).
   A Halfling can use a Spear Two-Handed, and thus can Set it vs. a Charge. I'd rule that he 
couldn't throw it though, but he could use it One-Handed when mounted; basically, the Spear is 
now used like a Lance for Halflings (see entry for page 67).
   A Halfling can use a Bastard Sword in 1H mode, using both his hands, and as usual for a 
Bastard Sword, he doesn't automatically lose initiative.
   And a Halfling can use a Light Crossbow, but unless he has 18 Strength, he can only fire it 
once every 2 rounds (reloads Two-Handed, as if it were a Heavy Crossbow for him).
   BUT, this does open up a few additional possibilities for Halflings and Dwarves (and 
Goblins, and Kobolds...):

   A Halfling can use a normal sword as a human would use a Two-Handed sword.
   A Dwarf could use a Two-Handed sword with a -3 penalty to hit, just as he uses a Polearm.
   A Halfling could use a Battle Axe(!), Two-Handed with a -3 penalty to hit (Battle Axe being 
a size Medium, Two-Handed weapon).
   And a Dwarf could try to fire a Longbow, with a -3 penalty.

   I don't have any problems with this... as it would still be very rare, I think, and it's 
not going to unbalance the game or anything.

   Now the question may come up about Weapon Mastery. Demi-Humans get Basic mastery with all 
weapons that aren't restricted from their class.
   So if a Halfling had no choice but to pick up a Battle Axe, or the Dwarf had to try to take 
a shot with a Longbow, what Mastery would apply?

   Well, I don't have any problems with allowing them to still have their Basic Mastery with 
any weapon they can actually try to use....
   When you think about it, even a Halfling lives twice as long as a human, so if a human 
Fighter were starting out at 1st Level at age 18, then a Halfling might be starting out at 1st 
Level at age 36.
   It only takes one week to gain Basic Mastery of a weapon. It's pretty easy to imagine that 
during his 36 years, a Halfing may have taken 1 week to play around with a Battle Axe, even 
though he never expects to use it again. Surely there might be Halfling lumberjacks? heh

   Remember that these rules in no way apply to the class-based weapon restrictions for human 
classes, like Magic-Users and Thieves.

Page 63, Blackjack:

   The third paragraph gives an example indicating that a character using a Blackjack can 
attempt to hit his opponent's head in combat by taking a -4 penalty To Hit. This was not 
stated in the Player's Companion, p.5, where it says the Blackjack must target the head or 
neck, but the attack is made against the normal Armor Class of the victim, so I recommend not 
using the -4 penalty. Further, the Companion set did not indicate that a metal helm or low AC 
would make a creature immune to the special effects of the Blackjack. A successful Hit Roll is 
supposed to indicate that the target's armor has been bypassed or overcome, and if that 
happens then the special effects should apply, so I recommend not using this change either.
   Next, since the Blackjack is almost a throw-away weapon when Weapon Mastery is used (Weapon 
Mastery choices are much better spent on other weapons, and a character can just attempt to 
make an unarmed Strike to knockout an opponent instead of spending training on a Blackjack), I 
recommend making a change. Instead of using the values given in the Weapon Mastery table for 
the increasing penalties to the victim's Saving Throw (ranging from -1 to -4 at Grand Master 
level), apply a penalty equal to the actual damage inflicted by the Blackjack, including any 
magical bonuses of the weapon, but not including the wielder's Strength bonuses to damage.
   For example, at Basic level the Blackjack will inflict 1-2 damage. This will cause the 
victim struck in the head to make his Saving Throw with a -1 to -2 penalty, depending on the 
damage rolled for the Blackjack. This value can even be doubled by a Thief's Backstab....
   Remember the victim will still get the standard bonus to his Saving Throw based on his 
level, as is usual for the Blackjack. 

Page 64, Bola, Holy Water, Lance:


   The Bola uses Non-Standard Targeting; see the entry for page 105 about Non-Standard 
Targeting. However, no damage can be inflicted if the Hit Roll is not high enough to hit the 
standard AC of the target.
   From the Master Player's Book, page 17, "If the target of a bola attack gains an Armor 
Class bonus for cover, the bonus also applies to the victim's saving throw against the bola's 
effects, making it easier to avoid them."
   "Bolas are awkward to carry and may become tangled. for each additional bola carried, the 
encumbrance of the bolas triples: first bola = 5 cn, second bola = 15 cn, third bola = 45 cn, 
   Note how the Cyclopedia changed the wording of the last paragraph. An example of the 
correct interpretation (as verified by Frank Mentzer): if a character is carrying 2 bolas, the 
first one counts as 5 cn and the second one counts as 15 cn, for a total of 20 cn.

Holy Water

   The Master Player's Book, p.19, indicates that Holy Water can also damage "evil enchanted 
creatures." It's the DM's option to decide what creatures might be included. Evil planar 
creatures such as the Malfera or Efreeti are obvious candidates for this, but other common 
evil enchanted creatures, such as a Gargoyle, probably wouldn't be included.

   The description of the Lance here gets a little vague in some places. Just remember that:

   A lance may normally ONLY be used from the back of a mount. It only requires one hand to 
wield when mounted.

   The one exception is that it may be Set vs. a Charge while on foot. When used in this way, 
it should really be treated as a Two-Handed weapon.

   In the case of a flying mount, the lance may either be attached to the saddle or not 
attached. If it is attached, you can't gain defense bonuses from it. If it's not attached, you 
can't let go of it without losing it.... 

Page 65, Net, Burning Oil, Rock/Tossed Object:


   The Net uses Non-Standard Targeting; see the entry for page 105 about Non-Standard 

Oil, Burning

   A flask of oil, when broken or poured out on the floor (intentionally, or as the result of 
a missed throw at a monster, etc.) will form a puddle 3' in diameter (or if poured out 
carefully, a total of 9 square feet in any shape). If lit by fire, it will burn for 10 rounds. 
Anything standing in or attempting to cross the burning oil will take 1d8 damage per round of 
exposure. Also apply the Ignite rule from page 80. Yes, if you are wearing flammable clothing, 
you might burn for longer than the standard 2 rounds for being covered in oil, at reduced 
damage. Once the oil burns out though, if your clothes caught fire, the flames can be 
extinguish after one full round by beating at them or rolling on the ground.

   These rules were pieced together from various sources.
   Note that a flask of oil does not need to penetrate armor in order to be effective; see the 
entry for page 105 about Non-Standard Targeting.

Rock, Thrown

   Thrown Rocks (along with flasks of oil and holy water) fall under the category of "Tossed 
Object" in the Weapon Mastery table. I recommend broadening that category to include all 
miscellaneous objects that are used as weapons of opportunity. This could include anything 
that that a PC uses to attack with that isn't a proper weapon, ranging from rocks, sticks, 
mugs, table knives, frying pans, tools, torches (see the entry for page 66 about Torches), 
   The damage for any of these objects should really be no higher than 1d2 (so reduce the 
damage listed for a Thrown Rock on the Weapons Table, p.62).
   Since these aren't proper weapons, they aren't specifically restricted based on character 
class. For example, a desperate Magic-User could pick up a rock, walking stick, torch, or 
utility knife and fight with it. Of course, a Cleric still isn't allowed to use any edged 
   When using a miscellaneous object as a weapon, everyone is treated as having Basic Mastery 
(refer to the Tossed Object entry in the Weapon Mastery table, p.79), but note that it is not 
possible to train to higher Mastery levels with any of these objects.
   Although the entry in the Weapon Mastery table says, "Tossed Object," these items can also 
be used to make melee attacks (which will probably happen more often than tossing them). 
Rocks, flasks of oil/holy water, or pretty much any such miscellaneous object can be held in 
the hand and used as a melee weapon, but not every one of these objects will make an effective 
missile weapon. For example, a utility knife used as a weapon would would fall within the 
"Tossed Objects" listing in the Weapon Mastery table, but it would not be properly weighted 
for effective throwing, so could only be used in melee.
   If some object is large enough to do up to 3 points of damage (or is much larger than size 
Small), I would no longer allow it to fall within this category, and instead treat it as an 
actual weapon that is smaller than full-sized. For example, a broken chair leg that is heavy 
enough to do 1-3 damage should be treated as a small Club, and any knife that is capable of 
doing 1-3 damage would be a small Dagger.... Weapon Mastery would then apply, along with 
class-based weapon restrictions. 
   An exception to this would be a miscellaneous object that is large enough to be wielded 
Two-Handed. In this case just apply the rules for Nonstandard Weapon Use from the last 
paragraph on page 66 of the Rules Cyclopedia. A shovel, for example, might be wielded with 
both hands, doing 2-3 damage (1d2 + 1), but would incur the usual penalties for two-handed 
weapon use.

Page 65-66, Shield Weapons:

   Shield Weapons shouldn't be treated as shields; they are actually weapons that can give 
Weapon Mastery defense bonuses to your Armor Class. This will help tie up some of the lose 
ends regarding Shield Weapons.

   For example, normally a Thief can't use a shield, yet the description of Shield Weapons 
indicates that Thieves can use them. Mystics are not mentioned here, but I think this was an 
oversight because Mystics weren't an official character class in the Master's Set, when Shield 
Weapons were introduced. However, Mystics also normally aren't allowed to use a shield, 
because they rely completely on their discipline for protection. But because Mystics learn to 
use ALL weapons, Shield Weapons should be allowed, just as they are for Thieves, with the 
following addendums:

   Thieves are restricted from using the Tusked Shield, because it is a Two-Handed melee 

   When wielded by a Mystic or Thief, a Shield Weapon must be used as the primary weapon, not 
as an off-hand weapon. These characters may not use another weapon while using a Shield Weapon 
(in the case of two-weapon combat).

   When a Shield Weapon is being used as a character's only weapon and no off-hand attack is 
being made, the character may still make one extra attack per round if the Shield Weapon has 
at least 2 blades which haven't broken off -- a second blade is needed to gain an extra attack 
after the normal attack(s) with the Shield Weapon. This also applies to Tusked Shields. A 
Horned Shield used alone, though, won't get an extra attack per round, because it only has one 

   A Halfling, as per the rules for Weapon Size Restrictions (see entry for page 62-66),  must 
use both hands to properly wield a Sword Shield because it is size Medium. He would then get 
two attacks per round (like human using a Tusked Shield) as long as there are at least two 
blades on the shield, as stated above.

   Shield Weapons are also noted as being awkward. This makes them more difficult to defend 
with than a standard shield. And take note that on the Weapon Mastery table (p.77-78) it is 
indicated that a standard shield may not be used when using these weapons (they are not marked 
with the "star in a circle" symbol). It is possible to use two Shield Weapons at the same time 
though, but you would not be able to gain the AC bonus from both Shield Weapons during a 
round, and you would still gain only one extra attack each round (one attack from each 
   As with any other weapon, I would apply the suggested rule from the entry for page 110 that 
says when using any two weapons at the same time, one of them must be size Small. This will 
mean that when using the Sword Shield (size Medium), your other weapon will have to be size 
   One thing to keep in mind is that since Shield Weapons are treated as weapons rather than 
shields, a Shield Weapon's defensive bonuses are considered Weapon Mastery defense bonuses 
rather than armor. So in the case of a magical Shield Weapon, the magical bonus should not be 
applied to the users Armor Class, but only to Hit Rolls and damage rolls with the Shield 
Weapon. The magical bonus is also added to rolls when checking for breakage, as noted in the 
third paragraph on page 66, though the last sentence of that paragraph should read, "In 
addition to magical modifiers, modify the roll by -1 per 10 points of maximum damage possible 
from the foe's attack."

   If all the blades have broken off any Shield Weapon, any further breakage will result in 
the weapon becoming completely unusable, even for defending.

   In the Master's Set, the number of blades on each Shield Weapon was specifically listed in 
the Weapon Mastery Table. For the most part, the number of blades on each shield Weapon is 
made clear in the descriptions in the Cyclopedia, but there may be some question about the 
Tusked Shield. It has a total of 1-5 blades (the center spike is treated just like another 

   See the entry for page 110 about Two Weapons Combat and further notes about Weapon Mastery 
defense bonuses from Shield Weapons.

Page 66, Staff, Torch, Whip:


   Despite the statement that a Staff may be used by all classes, Thieves are prohibited from 
using any two-handed melee weapons, so may not use a Staff (the statement was carried over 
from page 19 of the Master Players' Book, which Frank Mentzer says was in error).


   I recommend ignoring the second paragraph, which states that Weapon Mastery with a Club is 
also Mastery with a Torch. The Torch is less than half the weight of a Club, the Club is size 
Medium while the Torch is size Small, and using an unlit torch as a bludgeon only inflicts 1-2 
damage... so a Torch really isn't big enough to be considered a true Club, it wouldn't be used 
in quite the same manner, and it probably wouldn't stand up to combat as well (especially for 
deflecting blows).
   Instead, I think the Torch should be placed into the category of a miscellaneous object 
used as a weapon, rather than being a true weapon. See the entry for page 65 about Thrown 
Rocks and miscellaneous Tossed Objects as weapons, and consider a Torch to fall within that 
   Note that when lit, a torch can be used inflict 1-4 points of non-modifiable fire damage. 
For example, Strength adjustments should not modify fire damage (but can still apply to the 
Hit Roll -- this type of attack involves holding the lit torch against your opponent rather 
than rapidly striking him), nor should fire damage be adjusted, doubled, or halved by effects 
such as Backstab, Smash, etc. If the character prefers to use the torch as a bludgeon (doing 
1-2 normal damage) rather the trying to burn the opponent, then such adjustments can apply. If 
thrown, a flaming torch likewise does standard Tossed Object damage (1-2) rather than fire 
damage, but it can ignite flammable materials as well.


   The Whip uses Non-Standard Targeting, but only when attacking to entangle; see the entry 
for page 105 about Non-Standard Targeting. 
   As with the Bola and Net, a victim who is Entangled, Slowed, or Delayed gets to make a new 
Saving Throw each round at the end of his Hand-to-Hand phase (see pages 80-81 for further 
details on these effects).

Page 67, Spear:

   As an optional rule, a spear may also be used for the Lance Attack maneuver when the 
wielder is mounted (see entry for Page 104 about the Lance Attack). This would allow a 
Halfling to use the spear to perform a Lance Attack, since he is too small to use a lance. If 
you use this, then allow Halflings to use the spear with one hand while mounted, like a lance 
is used (see the entry for Page 64, The Lance), even though a Halfling will normally need two 
hands to use a spear (see entry for page 62-66 about Weapon Size Restrictions).

Page 68, Armor, Barding:

   Note: any set of magical armor will weigh only half as much as normal (see entry for page 
242). This includes barding, but not shields.

   I'd recommend that wearing Suit Armor should negate all Dexterity adjustments, such as 
bonuses to Armor Class or Missile Fire. This would include negating Dexterity penalties to 
your Armor Class or Missile Fire too, since your ability dodge is not even going to come into 
play when you are standing there in a sheath of metal, and you already get a -5 penalty to 
Missile Fire when wearing Suit Armor (except when using a crossbow).

   This next suggestion starts to go further into house-rule territory, but it's a quick one, 
so I'll throw it in.
   Continuing with the above idea, as an option, you might decide to limit Dexterity 
adjustments for other heavy armor types too.... This will slightly offset the issue where 
Platemail armor is unquestionably the best for everyone who can wear it, and even a suit of 
magical Chainmail +1 is a throw-away item, because a normal suit of Platemail will be better 
in every case....
   You can either limit just the Dexterity adjustments, or you can limit the Dexterity score 
itself (i.e., a person with a Dexterity of 16 or more will have his Dexterity reduced to 15 
whenever he's wearing a suit of Platemail).
   Also included in this table are figures for how long it takes to put on a suit of armor. 
This can become important in situations where a character is in a hurry to get into (or out 
of) his armor, such as when being attacked in the middle of the night or needing to shed armor 
quickly when sinking in a lake.... The numbers I used follow the method given in the AD&D 
Wilderness Survival Guide, p.65, adjusted to conform to the armor system in Classic D&D 
(except Suit Armor, which is already covered on this page in the Cyclopedia).

 Armor Type  Max Dex Adj.  Effective Dex  Time needed  
                 +/-          Min/Max       to don*
 Suit Armor       0            9  12        2 Turns
 Plate Mail       1            6  15        7 Rounds
 Banded Mail      2            4  17        4 Rounds
 Chain Mail       3            3  18        3 Rounds
 Scale Mail    no limit       no limit      2 Rounds
 Leather       no limit       no limit      1 Round

 * armor can be removed in half this time

   The Dexterity limitations work on the assumption that a heavy suit of armor will somewhat 
slow and restrict the movements of the wearer. That would include slowing and restricting any 
clumsy movements (we'll assume that if a clumsy person moves more slowly, he won't fumble 
around as much). So if a person with a very high Dexterity were wearing Platemail, he could 
only receive a +1 bonus for anything using Dexterity adjustments, and conversely, if a person 
with a very low Dexterity were wearing Platemail, he would, at worst, have a -1 penalty 
applied. If you limit the Dexterity score itself, it will also apply toward Dexterity checks 
and the use of Dexterity-based skills, etc.
   As you can see, for characters with very high Dexterity it becomes advantageous to use 
Banded or even Chainmail, which will also reduce their overall encumbrance. And characters 
with very low Dexterity will gain an advantage from wearing Platemail, which will slow their 
movements down enough to stabilize them a bit. 
   And while it might be reasonable to say that a person with a 5 Dexterity could wear Suit 
Armor and become more stable (gaining an effective Dexterity of 9) in typical situations or 
when making certain Dexterity checks (to avoid being Disarmed, thrown from a horse, or losing 
his balance on shaky ground, for example), remember that wearing such heavy armor would cause 
some Dexterity checks to be HEAVILY penalized (such as when trying to walk across a tight-


   In the Sage Advice column from Dragon Magazine #123, someone asked what is the point of 
leather barding when a horse's natural AC is already 7. The sage suggested decreasing the AC 
value of each set of barding by 1 point. Frank Mentzer approves of this suggestion as well.

   Based on that, here is a revised table for barding, though I chose to leave Joust armor at 
its unaltered value, since AC 0 is already quite good.


       Barding Table

     Barding   Cost   Enc.
 AC   Type     (gp)   (cn)

 6   Leather    40    250
 5   Scale      75    400
 4   Chain     150    600
 3   Banded    400  1,500 
 2   Plate     500  3,000
 1   Field     600  4,000
 0   Joust     700  5,000

   Finally, contrary to what was stated in previous versions of this document, I now believe 
the numbers given in the barding example for how much a Griffon can carry are correct. I 
believe the error actually occurs in the monster description itself; see the entry for page 

Page 69, Adventuring Gear Table:

   Scrap that whole table, and use this one instead, taken from Dragon Magazine, March 1993, 
issue #191, and slightly edited by me.


                                 D&D Game Adventuring Gear Table

Item                  Description/Notes                                              Cost/Enc.
Arrowhead             For use when manufacturing arrows in the wild                  1 sp/1
Backpack              Capacity of 400 cn (40 lbs.)                                   5 gp/20
Backpack, explorer's  Capacity of 800 cn (80 lbs.)                                  10 gp/80
Backpack, waterproof  Capacity of 300 cn (30 lbs.)                                  30 gp/60
Bandages              Prevents further blood loss;                                   1 sp/1
                       enough for 1 character's wounds from 1 combat
Bedroll               Heavy blanket and small pillow                                 1 gp/50
Belt                                                                                 2 sp/5*
Boots, riding         Or swash-topped                                                5 gp/15*
Boots, plain                                                                         1 gp/10*
Bow strings, 10                                                                      1 gp/1
Candle                Burns 1 hour; sheds light in 10' radius                        1 sp/1
Chisel                For chipping away stone                                        2 gp/10
Climbing hook         Hand-held; Supports up to 250 lbs.                             5 gp/40
Cloak, long                                                                          1 gp/15*
Cloak, short                                                                         5 sp/10*
Clothes, extravagant  Tunic & pants; blouse & skirt; dress; robe; or equivalent    50+ gp/30*
Clothes, fine         See above                                                     20 gp/20*
Clothes, normal       See above                                                      5 gp/20*
Clothes, plain        See above; characters start with 2 or 3 sets of plain clothes  5 sp/20*
Disguise kit          Includes wigs, hair dye, makeup                               20 gp/50
Drill, hand           For drilling through wood or metal                            10 gp/30
Garlic                Useful against vampires                                        5 sp/1
Grappling hook        Holds up to 500 lbs.                                          25 gp/80
Gloves, heavy         Prevents rope burns, assures better grip on slippery           5 sp/10*
                       items, protects against needle traps; impossible to
                       pick pockets or remove traps while wearing these
Gloves, soft          Protects against contact poisons and other things              1 gp/5*
                       that harm exposed skin; useless against needle traps
Hammer, utility       Or Wooden Mallet. Does 1d2 damage if used as weapon            2 gp/10
Hat                                                                                  2 sp/3*
Holy symbol           At DM's discretion, may be needed to Turn undead              25 gp/1
Holy symbol,          Inflicts penalty of -2 to Turning rolls                        5 gp/1
Holy water            Breakable glass vial                                          25 gp/1
Ink, vial of          Enough to write 50 pages of simple text                        1 gp/20
Iron spike            One spike needed for each 5' of a sheer surface being          1 sp/5
                       climbed by a mountaineer. Can buy a bundle of 12 for 1 gp
Journal, blank        With fifty 6" x 9" pages                                      20 gp/30
Knapsack              Capacity of 250 cn (25 lbs.)                                   3 gp/10
Knife, utility        Does 1d2 damage if used as a weapon                            1 gp/5
Lantern               Burns 1 oil flask for 4 hours; 30' radius of illumination     10 gp/30
Lantern, bullseye     Burns 4 hrs. (24 turns) illuminates cone 100' long, 20' base  20 gp/30
Lasso, leather                                                                       5 gp/30
Leather, bulk         One square foot for miscellaneous use                          1 sp/5
Lockpicks             Optional portion of thieves' tool kit;                        15 gp/5
                       does not permit trap removal
Magnifying glass      For studying fine details and fire-starting                    3 gp/5
Map, explorers'       Speculative map of unexplored territory                       50 gp/10
Map, detailed         Highly detailed map of explored territory                     30 gp/10
Map, general          General trail map of explored territory                       10 gp/10
Mirror, hand          Made of steel                                                  5 gp/5
Musical instrument,   Lute, mandolin, etc.                                          20 gp/100
Musical instrument,   Flute, recorder, etc.                                          5 gp/30
Oil, ceramic flask    Breakable; can be thrown as a weapon with a wick inserted      2 gp/10
Oil, metal flask      Unbreakable; can't be used as a weapon. 1 gp to refill         2 gp/20
Papyrus               One 12" x 12" leaf                                             1 sp/1
Parchment             One 10" x 10" leaf                                             1 gp/5
Parka                 For warmth in cold climates                                    5 gp/40*
Pole, Wooden          10' long, 2" thick                                             1 gp/100
Pot, cooking          Two-quart capacity                                             1 gp/50
Pouch, belt           Capacity 50 cn (5 lbs.)                                        5 sp/2
Quill pen             For writing                                                    5 sp/1
Quiver                Holds 20 arrows or 30 quarrels;      (When full, weighs 10cn)  1 gp/5
Quiver, back          Holds 50 arrows; prevents wearing of pack or knapsack;("25cn)  5 gp/20
Quiver, belt          Holds 10 crossbow quarrels;           (When full, weighs 4cn)  1 gp/3
Rations, iron         Week's supply; stays fresh 2 months                           15 gp/70
Rations, standard     Week's supply; stays fresh 7 days                              5 gp/200
Rope, 50' length      Supports 750 lbs.; for each 10 lbs. above this,                1 gp/50
                       give 5% cumulative chance of breakage
Sack, small           Capacity 200 cn (20 lbs.)                                      1 gp/1
Sack, large           Capacity 600 cn (60 lbs.)                                      2 gp/5
Salt, 1 lb.           For preserving meat or monster parts for future use; one lb.  10 gp/10
                       of salt is needed for each 5 lbs. of organs being preserved
Scroll case           Waterproof; Holds 1 map, 1 scroll, or 10 leaves of parchment   5 gp/20
Sewing kit            For repair of cloth/leather                                    1 gp/10
Shoes                                                                                5 sp/8*
Spellbook, blank      24" x 24" x 6"; holds 24 spells                              100 gp/200
Spellbook cover       Waterproof                                                    10 gp/30
Stake, wooden         18" long                                                       1 sp/1
Tent, small           3' x 6' base, 3' peak; watertight                             20 gp/100
Tent, medium          6' x 6' base, 5' peak; watertight                             30 gp/250
Tent, large           10' x 10', tapers to 8' x 8' at a 7' height, 10' peaked top   50 gp/1000
Thieves' tools        Needed for picking locks & removing traps                     25 gp/10
Tinder box            Flint, steel, kindling                                         3 gp/5
Torch                 Burns 1 hour (6 turns); sheds light in 30' radius;             2 sp/20
                       can be bought in bundles of 6 torches for 1 gp
Twine,                Supports up to 30 lbs.; for each 10 lbs. above this,           2 sp/10
 100' ball of          give 10% chance of breakage
Vial, empty glass     Holds 1 pint (enc. 20 cn when filled)                          1 gp/10
Water/wineskin        1-quart capacity (enc. 30 cn when filled)                      1 gp/5
Wax                   For making impressions                                         3 sp/l0
Wine                  1 quart, wineskin not included                                 1 gp/30
Whistle               For signaling or bird calls                                    1 sp/5
Wolfsbane             To ward off lycanthropes                                      10 gp/1

* If this item is being worn, as opposed to being packed away as a spare, its encumbrance is 
  considered to be 0.

   On this page in the Rules Cyclopedia, the description of the Hammer (small utility hammer) 
says that it does 1d3 damage if used as a weapon, and can be wielded by anyone who can use a 
War Hammer.... I suggest just ignoring all of that. See the entry for page 65 about Thrown 
Rocks and miscellaneous Tossed Objects as weapons, and consider utility hammers (along with 
wooden mallets) to fall within that category.

   Note that on page 62, the Cyclopedia states that new characters can be assumed to already 
own two or three sets of plain clothes, a pair of shoes, a belt, and a belt-pouch.

Page 70, War Horse:

   The Rules Cyclopedia indicates that both the rider and War Horse can attack during the same 
round, but the Mentzer Expert Rulebook, p.3,  says that the rider MAY NOT make an attack when 
guiding the horse to attack. The earlier Cook-edited edition of the Expert set, though, also 
says that both the rider and the horse may attack.
   So I would stick with the Rules Cyclopedia on this, but remember that attacking from 
horseback requires a Riding Skill check (see entry for page 83-85). You could also require a 
separate Riding Skill check to correctly guide the horse to attack during a round!

Page 71-72, Water Vessels:

   This section is a bit messy. I never actually used any of this though. I think the main 
things you need to know are:

   Consult the individual vessel descriptions to get the correct capacities (most of the 
capacities in the table are wrong).

   On p.72 the cost to convert a sailing ship to a Troop Transport is supposed to be 1/3 of 
the cost of the ship, not 1/2 (although if you use 1/2, then the cost of the Troop Transport 
in the table is correct.... but the Expert Rulebook says the cost is 1/3, and the footnote in 
this table says 1/3 too).

Page 75a, Weapon Mastery:

Weapon Mastery by Experience Level Table

   I suggest scribbling down "Mystics/" next to Fighters in this chart (Mystics, after all, 
are constantly training to fight with and without weapons, so give them the same starting 
weapon slots as Fighters).

   Also, "All Others" isn't really all others... Demi-Humans are different. You can scribble 
down "DH" in the right side of the chart and draw an arrow pointing to the paragraph directly 
to the right of it, where it says Demi-Humans train at levels 4 and 8 (and 12 for Dwarves).


   Ya know what? That chart sucks. I'm just gonna make a new one that will hopefully be easier 
to read :D


           Weapon Choices Gained by Experience Level
      |                   Other
Level |  Fighter  Mystic  Human   Halfling    Elf     Dwarf
  1   |     4       4       2    [Basic skill in all weapons]
  3   |     1       1       1
  4   |                               1        1        1
  6   |     1       1       1
  8   |                               1*       1        1
  9   |     1       1       1
 10   |                                        *
 11   |     1       1       1
 12   |                                                 1*
 15   |     1       1       1
 16   |             *           
 19   |     1               
 23   |     1               1
 27   |     1               
 30   |     1               1
 33   |     1               
 36   |     1*              1*

* Gain 1 choice every 300,000 XP after this level.

   Notice that I've increased the amount of XP needed to gain new Weapon Choices after maximum 
level to 300,000. I strongly recommend making this change. Gaining new Weapon Choices every 
200,000 XP is far too easy, and will result in Weapon Mastery for Demi-Humans getting really 
out of control, since they reach their maximum levels so much sooner than humans. Using 
300,000 XP will work out almost perfectly, giving Demi-Humans approximately the same number of 
Weapon Choices as Fighters of comparable XP totals.

Misc Errata

   Under "What to do with Weapon Choices," completely disregard the second paragraph about 
having to spend extra Weapon Choices to learn both modes of using a Bastard Sword; this was 
not found in the Masters set. Training with a Bastard Sword should result in equal Mastery 
when using it in either mode. The Bastard Sword is balanced against the other swords because 
it has the versatility of different modes, at a cost of doing less maximum damage and having 
poorer special abilities than standard swords. If you take away that versatility by requiring 
extra training to use both modes (treating it as two separate weapons), then the Bastard Sword 
becomes rather pointless (no pun intended!).
   This should also apply to the Blowgun and Net as well; these weapons can come in both 1H 
and 2H varieties, but any weapon training should cover the use of both forms.
   There are a couple places here where the Cyclopedia re-words things and loses the original 
intent (which can be found on page 15 of the Master Players' Book).
   The first sentence under "Training" seems to indicate that Basic skill in a weapon can be 
automatically gained. This is only true for starting characters selecting their starting 
weapons. After that, gaining Basic skill of new weapons is not automatic, but has a chance of 
success as found in the Table on page 76.
   On page 76, the section "Unskilled Weapon Use" gets the original intent muddled. You do not 
have "unskilled characters;" you have characters who are unskilled in specific weapons.

Page 75b, Optional Weapon Mastery Variation:

   This is a variation of Weapon Mastery training which makes things a bit simpler and helps 
keep things more balanced.  
   This method aims to prevent characters from reaching the hugely-unbalancing higher Mastery 
ranks so easily, while promoting more diversity in weapon selection rather than exclusively 
focusing on only one weapon (unless the player really wants that). Also, to make it more 
granular, training points will be gained every level rather than having them suddenly appear 
every 3 or 4 levels.
   Every time a character gains a level (and every +300,000 XP after maximum level), he gets 
the following number of Weapon Training Points:
   Fighters and Mystics: 4
   Magic-Users: 2
   Other Classes: 3
   These numbers also represent the number of weapons a character at 1st level will already 
have Basic skill with (regular Training Points aren't given at 1st level), except Demi-Humans 
start with Basic Mastery in all weapons they can use. So, as with the standard rules, Fighters 
and Mystics start with Basic Mastery of 4 weapons of their choice, Magic-Users start with 
Basic Mastery of 2 weapons, and now Clerics and Thieves start out with Basic Mastery of 3 
   When a character has accumulated enough Training Points, he can spend them to progress up 
the Mastery levels as follows:
   Level of        Points     Cumulative
 Mastery Sought   Required   Points Spent
 Basic                5           5  
 Skilled             10          15 
 Expert              20          35 
 Master              30          65 
 Grand Master        40         105 

   Cumulative Points are only shown as a reference. To go from Basic to Skilled would require 
spending 10 points, then later to go from Skilled to Expert would require 20 Points. 
   All other times and costs and details of training still apply. Failing in a training 
attempt will not "use up" a player's Training Points; he will lose the money and game time 
indicated, but he can attempt the training again, as stated in the rules for training. Once 
the training is successful and the new rank is gained, then the Points are "spent." Otherwise 
a character can save his points for future use; it can be advantageous to keep some points in 
reserve in case you find a new magical weapon and want to train to use it properly, but it 
might also be advantageous to train with your current weapons so as to gain immediate 

Page 76, Weapon Mastery:

Applying Benefits

   A suggestion regarding damage: a Weapon Master should be allowed to deal damage as if his 
Mastery were of any lower rank he chooses. For example, someone with Expert Mastery of a 
weapon could choose to do damage as if he only had Basic Mastery. He could even choose to do 
damage as if he were Unskilled with the weapon (doing half damage), in case he really wants to 
avoid killing his opponent.

Opponent Type and Damage Bonuses

   In the second paragraph it states that a creature using a preloaded light crossbow (one-
handed) would be considered target type H. I don't think this is correct. The Master Player's 
Book, p.16, states, "Opponents using weapons held in the hand and swung or thrown (including 
sling and bola, but excluding all other missile fire devices) ... are designated 'H' (Hand-
held)." A preloaded light crossbow can be fired as a one-handed weapon, but the user should 
still be considered target type M (Missile/Monster) when using it.

   The third paragraph gives the example of a Wererat that could fit into either target 
category, and states that such a creature is treated as whichever target type is most 
favorable for the creature. Note that this does NOT apply to a human who could alternate 
between attacking with a weapon in one hand, and a bare-fisted strike with his other hand. A 
human is always considered target type H when using any hand weapon, and will only be target 
type M if using a bow or crossbow, or if he is completely unarmed.
   Also note that as soon as a creature drops its weapon, the target type can immediately 
change, and the creature will also immediately lose any benefits from the weapon. For example, 
someone who is skilled with a Hand Axe gets an AC bonus from Weapon Mastery every round. If he 
throws the axe at an opponent, he immediately loses the AC bonus against any further attacks, 
and will probably change to target type M against those attacks, unless he's holding a weapon 
in his other hand....

   Finally, I would treat any target that is incapable of defending itself (paralyzed, asleep, 
tied up, or being attacked by surprise from behind, for example) as whichever target type is 
most favorable to the ATTACKER; it shouldn't really matter if such a target is holding a 
weapon or not, since the target won't be able to defend against the attack anyway, and the 
attacker can take the time to use whichever mode of attack is most deadly.

Attack Roll Bonuses

   These are a bit too high. Getting Hit Roll bonuses for your Weapon Mastery is nice, but I 
would recommend halving these values to keep things reasonable. Also, the values in the 
Cyclopedia were slightly changed from those in the Master Players' Book, page 17. I used the 
Master Set values, though it only makes a very minor difference when halving them (+2 instead 
of +1 at Expert level vs. Secondary Target).

The revised chart would look like this:


       Attack Roll Bonuses

 Level of    Bonus vs  Bonus vs
 Mastery     Primary   Secondary
 Unskilled     -1*       -1*
 Basic          0         0
 Skilled       +1        +1
 Expert        +2        +2
 Master        +3        +2
 Grand Master  +4        +3

* applies to missile weapons only

Page 77, Despair Effect:

   Under "When to Roll for Despair," I would make a note after the second item, and clarify 
that the weapon user has to deflect AT LEAST TWO attacks in one round to qualify for this... 
because it's not really all that impressive to parry a single blow....

Page 78-79, Weapon Mastery Table:

   Change Bastard Sword and Spear to size Medium weapons, and change the Short Bow and Javelin 
to size Small (see entry for Page 62-66).
   The Tossed Object Listing can include all miscellaneous objects that are used as weapons of 
opportunity (See the entry for page 65 about Thrown Rocks). Alter the damage for the Stone in 
accordance with this, making it 1d2.

   In the middle column of the top page of the Weapon Mastery table, the Shield Weapons and 
Staff all have Primary and Secondary damage values listed, yet all these weapons have no 
Secondary Target Type -- they are all P=A weapons. I believe the Secondary Target information 
was included in error, and should just be ignored. Use the Primary Target damage values in all 
cases for these weapons.

   Something is wrong with the damage progression of the Cestus. When going from Expert to 
Master the damage does not increase, and for the Secondary Target type the maximum damage 
actually decreases! To smooth out the progression, these values are better:

 Cestus Damage Progression

Lvl.    Damage
 BS      1d3
 SK      1d4+1
 EX      2d4
 MS    P:2d4+2  S:1d6+2
 GM    P:2d4+4  S:1d6+4

   I really recommend increasing the damage of the Poleaxe just a bit, because it is, overall, 
quite underpowered. Compare it to the Pike: the Pike weighs less, costs less, has better 
additional abilities, and still does more maximum damage than the Poleaxe.... This can be 
balanced out by giving the Poleaxe an additional +1 to damage at Skilled, Expert, and Master 
ranks (it already pulls ahead at Grand Master). This will make it, on average, the most 
damaging standard polearm, but it balances out by being the one with the weakest special 

For convenience:

 Poleaxe Damage Progression

Lvl.    Damage
 BS      1d10
 SK      1d10+4
 EX      1d10+7
 MS    P:1d10+11  S:1d10+9
 GM    P:1d8+16   S:1d8+12

Knife Shield

   Though the Knife Shield is breakable and costs 65gp, it doesn't have enough negatives to 
offset its advantages. It is size Small and weighs less than a normal shield, but it works 
just as well, providing an AC bonus against all incoming attacks. And it grants a free extra 
attack (with no penalty) which does a good amount of damage. 
   To help balance that out a bit, I really recommend that the Knife Shield's defense bonus 
should only apply against a limited number of attacks each round (as with all other weapons 
except the Tusked Shield):


 Knife Shield

Lvl.   Defense
 BS   A:-1AC/1
 SK   A:-1AC/1
 EX   A:-2AC/2
 MS   A:-2AC/2
 GM   A:-2AC/2

War Hammer
   I believe the War Hammer should actually have a Primary Target type of M instead of H. All 
other bashing-type weapons (hammers/axes/clubs) use P=M, and also the War Hammer gains a 
defense bonus against M.

Sword, Normal
   In keeping with the other suggestions in this document to tone down Weapon Mastery so that 
it's not so unbalancing, I recommend decreasing the damage values for the Normal Sword. I've 
compared the average damage values to other weapons, and they do end up being just a bit too 
high -- though not as much as you might first think. The 1d12 at Skilled level is actually 
fine, since it averages out as the same amount of increase that most other weapons get by 
gaining a flat +2. Past that point, though, the average damage values do make a larger jump 
than what is seen in comparable weapons. 
   Don't worry about decreasing the damage values a bit; there will still be no other one-
handed weapons that can do more damage than the Normal Sword... and it has great defensive 
abilities as well.
   I recommend using these values for damage, which I arrived at by analyzing the damage 
ranges and average damage values in the progressions for the Bastard Sword and Battle Axe, to 
keep the Normal Sword "where it should be" in comparison:

 Sword Damage Progression

Lvl.    Damage
 BS      1d8
 SK      1d12
 EX      1d12+2
 MS    P:1d12+6   S:1d10+5
 GM    P:1d12+8   S:1d10+6

Page 80-81, Special Effect Descriptions:

   Note that many effects from Weapon Mastery are meant to apply toward creatures of about the 
same size as the attacker or smaller. Creatures larger than an Ogre may not be affected by 
some of these special effects, even if not specifically noted. 


   In the Special Effect Table for Blowgun, you can make a note that the loss of a % of Hit 
Points is the loss of that % of FULL Hit Points. They left out the paragraph that describes 
this effect. Player's Companion, p.3, states, "Percentage of Hit Points: The victim loses this 
percentage of original (fully healed) hit points. This may cause death if the victim is 
already damaged."


   The Deflect ability is over-powered. It's too easy to do, and completely free to use. You 
can balance it out with these suggested rules, which give players the option to decide whether 
or not they want to try to Deflect any attack, knowing they might have to go on the defensive 
until they can get an opening to attack again.

   First, a character must decide if he will attempt to Deflect as soon as an opponent's hit 
is rolled, before damage is determined. The incoming attack doesn't necessarily have to be 
targeting the character himself; a character could also be allowed to Deflect attacks that are 
made against others if they are within 5' of him. A character may only attempt one Deflect for 
each incoming attack. Failing in the Deflect attempt still "uses up" the Deflect. 

   If a character SUCCESSFULLY Deflects any number of attacks in a round, then during his next 
attack step he must skip his attack, and may only perform defensive maneuvers instead, such as 
Parry, Deflect, or Fighting Withdrawal. 
   If a character Deflects attacks from an opponent which he is capable of making Multiple 
Attacks against, then during his next attack step he must skip one of his Multiple Attacks for 
each attack he successfully Deflected. 
   "Multiple Attacks" here can include the second attack gained when fighting with two 
weapons. In this case, the character (if he successfully Deflects one attack) will have to 
skip his primary attack when his next attack step comes up (even if it isn't until the next 
round). Remember to apply the appropriate penalties to his second attack (see page 110 about 
Two Weapons Combat).

   A weapon used to Deflect might also break. When an attack is successfully Deflected, damage 
for the attack is still rolled -- against the Deflecting weapon. If the total damage is over 
10 points for a single attack, check for breakage as described in the entry for page 145b 
(this will be a Saving Throw vs. Normal or Crushing Blow, depending on the size of the 
   In the case of a Mystic Deflecting such high-damage blows with his bare hands, you can opt 
to have him make a second Saving Throw vs. Death Ray, applying a -1 to the Save for each full 
10 points of damage the attack would have inflicted. On a failed roll, the Mystic must skip 
one additional attack during his next attack step (if he has any attacks remaining).


   As with the other entangling effects (Entangle or Slow), I recommend that a Delay effect 
caused by an entangling weapon (Bola, Net, or Whip) has a continuous effect until the victim 
makes a successful Saving Throw at the end of his Hand-To-Hand phase. Delay effects caused by 
other weapons only last for 1 round.

   The last sentence describing this effect says that for each level of Mastery the attacker 
has above Basic, the victim gets a +1 penalty to his Dexterity check. However, the Weapon 
Mastery table already lists the increasing penalties with each level of Mastery in regard to 
the Sword and Short Sword (and they don't follow this progression). The Halberd is the only 
other weapon with Disarm, and it does not show increasing values or any extra penalties to the 
victim's Dexterity check. So this progression of a +1 penalty for each level above Basic 
should only apply to the Halberd.
   As noted on page 105, a Disarmed creature may either switch to a different carried weapon 
(suffering the loss of initiative for the next round), or may retrieve the dropped weapon 
(requiring a Retreat maneuver).


   This should also cause the penalties for being Fully Entangled (see entry for page 113).


   See the entry for page 65 about Burning Oil. You can usually beat out the flames of an 
Ignited item after one full round.


   As with Stun, the victim gets a new Saving Throw each round at the end of the Hand-to-Hand 
phase. This effect should also cause the penalties for being Partially Entangled (see entry 
for page 113).


   To clear up any possible confusion, the wording from the Players Companion says, "If freed, 
the victim remains effectively paralyzed for 2-12 rounds." i.e., the paralysis only occurs if 
the victim already failed his Save vs. Death Ray but was then freed from the Bola by someone 


   The Saving Throw made by a Stunned character each round is made at the end of the Hand-to-
Hand Combat phase (Players Companion, p.3).  
   Note that this Stun effect is slightly weaker than the Stun effects described on page 150, 
which are typically caused by powerful monster attacks or magic (which cause 4 point penalties 
to Armor Class and Saving Throws). The other standard effects of being Stunned still apply 
here though: the victim can't concentrate, cast spells, use magical items, or use general 
skills. Any Weapon Mastery above Basic is reduced to Basic.

Page 81, Other Polearms:

   Many of the optional polearm variations are unbalanced. Some of them simply function 
exactly like one of the standard polearms, but with extra abilities added. That just makes the 
standard polearms obsolete.... I've made slight changes here and there to make sure no polearm 
is totally better than any other, but kept each distinct by giving them different mixes of 
   This table shouldn't be difficult to read, since it mostly follows the descriptions of 
these weapons in the Rules Cyclopedia. Also, this assumes you've increased the damage for the 
Poleaxe by +1 at Skilled, Expert, and Master levels, as recommended in the entry for pages 78-

   Note that the polearms are numbered 1-10, which is handy if you need to roll one randomly 
(when generating a magical item, for example).

                                  Other Polearms

    Weapon         Damage Defense Special
 1. Bardiche       Hal    Hal     Disarm(Hal), Deflect(Pik), Set
 2. Bill           Pax    Pax     Deflect(Hal), Hook(Hal)
 3. Gisarme        Pik    Hal     Deflect(Pik), Hook(Hal)
 4. Glaive         Pik    Pax     Deflect(Hal), Double Damage(Dag), Set
 5. Lochaber Axe   Hal    Hal     Hook/Disarm(Hal), Stun(Spe) 
 6. Partizan       Pik    Pik     Disarm(Hal), Set
 7. Ranseur        Hal    Hal     Deflect/Disarm(Hal), Set
 8. Spetum         Hal    Pik     Deflect(Pik), Disarm(Hal), Set
 9. Spontoon       Spe    Pik     Deflect(Hal), Double Damage(Dag), Stun(Spe), Set
10. Voulge         Pik+2  Pax     Deflect(Hal), Double Damage(Dag)

    Hal=Halberd  Pax=Poleax  Pik=Pike  Spe=Spear  Dag=Dagger

The weight and cost of these miscellaneous polearms are the same as for the Halberd.

Page 83-85, Skills:
(Also see the Supplemental Skill list, available where you downloaded this Document)

For Art, Craft, Labor, Science, and Profession, you can use the City Encounters table on page 
98 as a nice list of specific choices for these skills.

There is additional information about Specialists on page 133 which can also apply to 
characters with the appropriate General Skills.

Blind Shooting

   First, I believe this should really be a Wisdom skill rather than a Dexterity skill; it's 
not about being nimble and quick, it's about being calm and perceptive.
   Next, I'm just going to recommend that successful use of this skill provides a +3 bonus To 
Hit in situations where the character is blind or cannot see the target (this will only 
partially offset the usual large penalties suffered for those situations). 
   This skill could also be used for making melee attacks, not just "shooting." In either case 
I'd suggest that the use of the skill should at least require the character to give up 
Initiative while he listens for his opponent's position. 


   I recommend that the running speed associated with using this skill should be limited to a 
maximum of twice the character's normal Encounter Speed. A marathon runner has to pace 
himself, and can't just run at top speed for hours!


   Since part of this skill emulates a Thief Ability (picking locks) I really recommend that 
this requires 2 Skill Slots to learn (to keep from devaluing the Thief class). A successful 
Skill Check could allow the character to then make a standard Open Locks roll as if he were a 
Thief of the same level (of course, this will require a set of lock picks). 


   DM's might want to impose a limitation and rule that to use this skill, a player must carry 
around a "doctor's kit" with the appropriate supplies. Check the Adventuring Gear Table in the 
entry for page 69, and have the player purchase a knapsack and fill it with such things as 
surgical tools (utility knife, hammer, & hand drill), plenty of bandages, medicines/herbs 
(substitute salt, garlic, wolvesbane, & holy water), a tinderbox & candles, a waterskin with 
clean water, wine for antiseptic, a belt for tourniquets, clean gloves, a magnifying glass, an 
iron spike for cauterizing, a sewing kit, some twine, etc. The kit should be rather 
encumbering; it is meant to help balance the fact that this skill is really quite potent. 
Characters with this skill are basically doctors. When bandaging simple wounds, the entire kit 
might not be required, but make sure there is always some cost associated with using this 

Quick Draw

   This skill allows a player to nock and fire an arrow with a +2 to initiative (and to be 
clear, the term "nock and fire an arrow" would seem to exclude this skill from applying to 
crossbows). This doesn't actually indicate that it will negate the usual automatic loss of 
initiative when using a bow (because it's a two-handed weapon) against opponents using one-
handed weapons. The bonus would apply when rolling for initiative against opponents who were 
also using bows or other two-handed weapons. Also see the Optional Order of Combat in the 
entry for page 102b, which lets all missile attacks happen before any melee attacks are made.


   Take note that the description here points out what happens to riders who DON'T have this 
skill.... The important implication being that everyone must make a Riding skill check in 
order to attack with a weapon while mounted.... Characters with this skill who are riding an 
animal they aren't specifically skilled with must make the roll with a +4 penalty. Characters 
who don't have the Riding skill must make a Dexterity check with a +8 penalty, or they can't 
attack while mounted! So I'm guessing everyone is going to want to take the Riding skill 

   It would be simpler to just treat this skill as granting the Thief ability to Move 
Silently, at a cost of 2 skill slots. Handle this the same as the Escape skill (see above).


   Instead of merely gaining the lame +1 to Wrestling Rating (which requires a skill check), I 
recommend that each Wrestling Skill a character takes will actually increase his Wrestling 
Mastery by one level (see page 113, and the entry for pages 112-114 in this document). This 
way, a character will gain not only a +1 to Wrestling Rating for each Wrestling skill he takes 
(this is already shown on the Wrestling Mastery table on page 113 -- just ignore the skill 
description here about getting a +1 on a successful check), but he will also gain the other 
benefits shown in the Wrestling Mastery table (increased damage and penalties to a pinned 
victim's Wrestling Roll).
   Keep in mind that any character can use the Basic level of Wrestling without taking this 
skill. If a Character takes this skill one time, he will be at Skilled level on the Wrestling 
Mastery table. If he takes this skill twice, he is then an Expert, and so on.

(This following skill is adapted from PC3 The Sea People)

Dodge (Dexterity Skill)

   This skill can be used only by unencumbered characters (carrying 400 cn or less). It allows 
a character to dodge out of the way of an attack, effectively improving AC by -2 on a 
successful Check. A roll of 20 means that the character has dodged the wrong way and will 
automatically take double damage from an attack. 
   I recommend that this skill is only effective against up to 3 attacks per round, though 
only one skill check is needed during the Intentions step (when the character must announce 
that he is Dodging). If the check is successful, the character gains a -2 AC bonus against the 
first 3 attacks upon him that round. If the character rolls a 20, he will take double damage 
from the first attack that hits him that round. 
   To use this skill, the character must be able to move around freely, and can't be entangled 
or underwater, for example. Furthermore, since the character must react to his opponents' 
attacks, he must give up initiative during any round he uses this skill. The character also 
cannot apply the Dodge bonus against any attack that he doesn't see coming.
   Improving this skill by spending an additional skill slot could give the character a mere 1 
point increase to his skill level, but could also allow him to Dodge against 1 additional 
attack each round.

(I also created the following optional skills you may find useful)

Axe Proficiency  (Strength skill)

   The character is proficient in the use of axes and knows the proper techniques to make 
efficient, powerful axe cuts. Many Dwarves have this skill, as do warriors from other cultures 
which favor the use of axes over swords.
   The character can use an axe to cut down trees or chop wood quickly and efficiently. In 
combat the character gets an automatic +1 to hit and damage when using any axe to make Hand-
To-Hand attacks (this includes the Hand Axe, Battle Axe, and Pole Axe). On a successful Skill 
Check, the character can apply this bonus when throwing an axe as well. This does not grant 
the ability to throw an axe if the weapon cannot normally be thrown, nor does the skill 
provide any Weapon Mastery levels or allow a character to use a weapon in combat that is 
normally restricted. 

Cure Spell Conversion (Wisdom skill)

   This is a special discipline practiced by some Clerics.
   On a successful skill check, a Cleric may cast any memorized Cure spell without it 
vanishing from his memory -- instead, he must select another memorized spell of equal or 
greater level, and that spell will vanish from his memory as if it were cast. 
   On a failed skill check, the actual Cure spell that was cast will vanish from the Cleric's 
memory instead of selected spell.
   The Cure spells this skill applies to are: Cure Light Wounds, Cure Serious Wounds, and Cure 
Critical Wounds, though use of this skill doesn't restrict them from being cast in reversed 

Enlightenment (Wisdom skill)

   By using this skill, a Cleric mediates for 1 Turn and petitions the power he serves to 
grant him knowledge a spell which he needs but does not have memorized. The requested spell 
must be of a level the Cleric is capable of casting, and the use of this skill cannot give the 
Cleric more spells of any particular level than he can normally have memorized.
   The Cleric must sacrifice two spells of equal level as the spell he is seeking, or one 
spell of greater level. On a successful skill check, the Cleric's request is granted and the 
chosen sacrifice spells vanish from the Cleric's memory, while the requested spell is 
imprinted in his memory. 
   On a failed check, the Cleric's request is denied; no spells are gained or lost, but the 
Cleric cannot use this skill again until after he has engaged in his usual morning meditations 
to gain new spells.
   If the Cleric takes at least 1 additional Turn to prepare beforehand, and successfully uses 
the Ceremony skill, he gains a -2 bonus to his roll when checking this skill (as long as he 
uses this skill within 1 Turn after performing the Ceremony).

Page 86a, Gaining Skills:

Improving Skills

   Gaining a paltry +1 for each additional skill slot you spend in order to improve a skill 
would be a ripoff, when you could instead spend the slot on a whole new skill. It is suggested 
that each additional slot you spend on a skill should give a +3 modifier to that skill instead 
of +1. 

Learning More Skills

   The calculations used in the table for Demi-Humans gaining more skills after their maximum 
level, are really not right.... They are based on the idea that once a Demi-Human passes his 
maximum level, he will start equating Attack Ranks to Levels, so it assumes a new skill should 
be gained every 4 Attack Ranks. The problem with that idea is that Attack Ranks are much 
harder to gain than standard levels -- generally about twice as hard. That's why the table 
lists such huge amounts, averaging 1 million XP, for Demi-Humans to gain new skills. They 
should really be gaining a new skill every 2 Attack Ranks instead of every 4.
   Additionally, the table doesn't show how human classes will gain skills after maximum 
level, but it's actually pretty easy to figure out the progression by checking the XP levels 
of when they gain skills up to that point.

Here is the corrected and inclusive table:

        New Skills After Maximum Level
 After max    Gains another   Then another skill
 level, a:      skill at:     for every gain of:
 Cleric       3,000,000 XP      +400,000 XP
 Fighter      3,600,000 XP      +480,000 XP
 Magic-User   4,500,000 XP      +600,000 XP
 Thief        3,520,000 XP      +480,000 XP
 Mystic       1,200,000 XP      +480,000 XP
 Dwarf        AR: D,F,H,J,L     +400,000 XP
 Elf          AR: D,F,H,J,L     +500,000 XP
 Halfling     AR: B,D,F,H,J     +600,000 XP

Page 86b, Optional General Skill Variation:

   As with my Weapon Mastery training variation (entry for p.75b), a more granular system 
works well in regard to gaining General Skills, instead of the standard method of just gaining 
a whole new skill every 4 levels. So basically forget the suggestions I just made above, and 
use this system instead!
   In this system, a character will gain 4 Skill Training Points (plus or minus Intelligence 
adjustment) every time he gains a level (and every +300,000 XP after maximum level).
   A character starting at 1st level simply gains that number of fully-developed Skills, with 
each skill being at a level equal to the appropriate ability score.
   The points gained each level are spent by applying them to any General Skill desired 
(subject to DM approval), with each 1 Skill Training Point increasing a General Skill by 1 
point (so new Skills will always start at 1 and build up gradually over time), up to the level 
of the ability score that Skill is based on. Raising the General Skill higher than your 
ability score requires 2 Training Points for each point of increase of the Skill.
   For example, if you have an Intelligence of 12, you can spend 12 skill points over time to 
get an Intelligence-based skill up to 12. But after that, it will take 2 Skill Training Points 
to raise the skill to 13, then 2 more to get it to 14, etc.
   Any General Skill which is described as requiring "two slots" will require double the usual 
number of Skill Training Points for each 1 point increase in the skill.
   A skill is considered to be "learned" (rather than just "being studied") when it gets to 
10. Before that point, any use of the skill (even simple uses) should require a Skill Check. 
Most skills can be learned up to 12 easily just by reading books, practicing, and casually 
learning from other people willing to share their knowledge. Improving a skill beyond that may 
require a special trainer. 
   A character may spend only 1 Skill Training Point per week, as long as he reasonably has 
access to a trainer, or a library where he can read about the subject, or even another 
character with the skill who can give pointers along the way.... Unlike the intense, focused 
training for Weapon Mastery, General Skills can thus be learned relatively easily, gradually 
over time. Such training can even happen during weeks when characters are going on adventures, 
during any available spare time (read your training manual while you're riding a horse to the 
dungeon). If a character wants to take time off from everything else and do nothing but train 
or attend classes, maybe he could spend 2 of his Skill Training Points per week on General 

Page 88, Exhaustion, Overland Movement, Jumping & Leaping:


   Just a clarification: where it says, "the character must subtract 2 from all attack damage 
rolls," to be more clear it should say, "must subtract 2 from all Hit Rolls and Damage Rolls" 
(Basic Players Manual, p.56).
   Also, I would apply a penalty of -1 level of Weapon Mastery to exhausted characters (Basic 
Mastery stays at Basic), and a -2 Penalty to Wrestling Rating as well.

   If you'd like to vary the number of rounds a character can exert himself before becoming 
exhausted (rather than blanketing everyone with the same "30 round" limit), I'd recommend that 
a character can run, or otherwise exert himself (this could even apply to combat), for a 
number of rounds equal to his Hit Dice plus twice his Constitution score (Con x 2 + HD) before 
becoming exhausted. Remember that most characters, regardless of level, can only have a 
maximum of 9 HD.

   A character's "exertion counter" is normally reset by resting for the remainder of the Turn 
after a battle; the Basic Players Manual, page 56, says, "A battle normally lasts only a 
minute or two, but is counted as a full turn because your characters rest afterward, clean up 
their equipment, and do other assumed normal actions."
   If characters don't (or can't) take the time to rest in this manner, just keep adding up 
the rounds until they become Exhausted. If they are merely moving at their Encounter Speed, 
that doesn't count as exertion, but it also doesn't count as rest. Once they become Exhausted, 
they will have to rest for 30 minutes to get rid of the Exhaustion penalties.

Traveling Rates by Terrain Table

   Many of the numbers on this table are wrong and do not agree with the stated method of 
determining overland movement rates. You should probably just disregard the whole table, along 
with the statement on page 89 that says the DM should choose the one terrain type that 
dominates the party's travel and base the entire day's movement on that one terrain type. The 
method given on page 41 of the Expert Rulebook shows that movement should be calculated for 
each terrain type separately. I'll outline the entire procedure below.

   Divide the normal speed (feet per turn) of the slowest party member by 5. This is the 
number of miles the party will travel per day in clear terrain. It might be helpful to think 
of this as the party's "movement points."
   A party can move through several types of terrain as long as it has enough movement to do 
so. All movement should be rounded to the nearest mile.
   As the party moves through different terrain types, subtract an amount of miles from their 
daily movement ("movement points") based on how far they travel in each terrain, modified as 
shown on the Terrain Effects on Movement Table, and stated more simply like this:

   Travel on Trail/Road costs only 2 movement points for each 3 miles traveled.
   Travel on Clear/City/Grassland costs 1 movement point for each 1 mile traveled.
   Travel on Forest/Hill/Desert/Broken costs 3 movement points for each 2 miles traveled.
   Travel on Mountain/Swamp/Jungle/Ice costs 2 movement points for each 1 mile traveled.

Jumping & Leaping

   This is not actually covered anywhere in Classic D&D, but I have found a need to determine 
how far or high a character can jump, and have arrived at some good numbers that work out 

   I recommend that:

   A character can make a running long jump of a distance equal to 1/10th his Running Speed in 
feet per round. 
   If he does not have a run of at least 10', he may only make a standing long jump of half 
that distance. 

   A character can make a vertical jump of a height equal to 1/10th his Encounter Speed in 
feet per round. 
   If he doesn't have a run of at least 10', he may only make a standing jump of half that 
   The character's entire body is considered to be above this height when the jump is made.

   So, for example, an unencumbered character with a Running Speed of 120 feet per round could 
make a running long jump of 12' or a standing long jump of 6' in distance. His encounter speed 
would be 40 feet per round, so he could make a running high jump of 4' or a standing high jump 
of 2' in height. These distances are the maximum most characters will be able to achieve. 
Also, (borrowed from the d20 SRD), a character can extend his arms upward a distance of half 
his height during the jump. Thus, a character can reach upward a distance equal to the height 
of the jump plus 1.5 times his own height. So in the example above, if a 6' tall character 
made the running high jump of 4', he could reach something that was 13 feet above him (6' + 
3' + 4').

   Note that these distances are always measures in feet; do not increase them to yards for 
outdoor movement! 

Page 89, Forced March, Swimming:

Overland Movement Rates

   The Forced March rule was omitted.

   "Forced March: If necessary, you may increase the number of miles traveled in a day by 
using a Forced March. If you use this option, the characters move 50% further than the normal 
day's movement (24 miles per day increases to 36, 36 increases to 54, and so forth). However, 
the whole day after the forced march must be spent resting." - Expert Rulebook, page 21.

By Swimming (and Drowning)

   It's noted that a character carrying more than 400 cn encumbrance will sink. Some specific 
details about how fast he will sink can be found in Creature Crucible PC3, The Sea People, 
page 4, where it states that any creature wearing armor will sink a number of feet equal to 
its encumbrance penalty each round (using indoor running speed, since underwater movement is 
measured in feet). So for example, a human that can normally run 120' per round can only run 
90' per round when wearing Platemail (as long as he's not carrying even more weight in 
equipment), so he sinks at a rate of 30' per round (120 - 90 = 30).
   It's also noted that any creature who is treading water suffers a -2 penalty to all Hit 
Rolls. This would apply to creatures swimming at the surface of the water while trying to 
fight; if they are fighting below the water, use the rules for Underwater Combat on page 115.

Page 92, Surprise:

   The information about evasion described under "One Group Is Surprised" is taken from the 
Expert Rulebook, page 41, but is supposed to apply only to WILDERNESS encounters, not dungeon 

   The Expert Rulebook notes, "Encounters in the wilderness are handled much the same as those 
in a dungeon. The main differences are in encounter distance and evasion. ..."
   "Surprise: This is handled the same as in the D&D Basic set, except that if either group is 
surprised, the encounter distance is 10-40 yards. If three or more creatures surprise a party, 
they may have moved into a circle around the party."
   "Evasion: Any group may always avoid an encounter if it surprises another group."

   In the wilderness, a surprise encounter can mean that you haven't even seen the enemy, 
because of the greater distances involved. In a dungeon, a surprise encounter can mean walking 
around the corner and getting caught completely off-guard by an enemy standing right there. So 
the information about automatically evading (with the surprised party not even being aware of 
the other group) should only be applied in the wilderness.

Page 93, Encounters & Reactions:

Encounter Distance Table

   Make a note by the dagger symbol footnote, that those distances are also used for Surprise.

Monster Reactions Table

   The table in the Cyclopedia is not really well-explained, and is improperly weighted to 
make the monsters attack. It is also inconsistent with previous editions. 
   Using the correct values from the table on page 22 of the Basic Dungeon Masters Rulebook, I 
created the following table to show how monster reactions are supposed to be resolved:
|      |                      |                            |            |
| 2d6  |     First roll       |        Second Roll         | Third Roll |
|      |                      |                            |            |
|      | Attack on a 2;       | Attack; or if adjustment   |            |
| 2-5  | otherwise roll again | was positive roll again    |  Attack    |
|      | with -3 adjustment   | at base chance             |            |
|      | Uncertain;           | Uncertain;                 |            |
| 6-8  | roll again           | roll again                 |  Leave     |
|      | at base chance       | at base chance             |            |
|      | Friendly on a 12;    | Friendly; or if adjustment |            |
| 9-12 | otherwise roll again | was negative roll again    |  Friendly  |
|      | with +3 adjustment   | at base chance             |            |

   For "roll again" results, wait 1 or more rounds, and consider character actions, the 
speaker's Charisma, and the overall situation before rolling again.
   All the other notes for adjustments still apply.

Page 99, Evasion:

   Some corrections need to be made here.
   First, note that a creature can't go to running speed (and so evasion is impossible) if, at 
the beginning of its Movement phase, it is within melee range of an enemy who is capable of 
attacking, in which case movement restrictions for combat apply (see page 103 about movement 
during combat). But remember if the enemy is chasing the character and has just moved at 
running speed, it won't be able to attack that round, so the character is still free to move 
away at running speed. 
   When one group decides to evade (excepting surprise situations in the wilderness -- see the 
entry for page 92), they will usually get a 1 round head start (at running speed) before the 
other group can react and begin pursuit (see Basic DM's Rulebook, p.16), unless, for some 
reason, the other group was already planning to go directly to running speed that round.
   In the Evasion Checklist, SKIP step 4. You do not check the Evasion Table except as noted 
in the last paragraph on page 99 (i.e., you only make an evasion check whenever the evaders 
are out of sight of the pursuers; otherwise you just jump straight to step 5 in the checklist 
and track each party's movement at running speed each round).
   Remember to apply the rules for Exhaustion (page 88) after 30 rounds of running.
   In the Evasion Table, the modifier for "Pursuers have scouts in place" is listed as "-
15%." That contradicts what is said in the text to the left of the table, where the modifier 
is said to be "-10%." However, I think BOTH these are incorrect and this isn't supposed to be 
a modifier at all.... The Expert Rulebook, p.42, doesn't list this modifier, and only states, 
just as the Cyclopedia does, "If the pursuing group has sent out small groups of scouts, 
evasion is more difficult." This is only describing the fact that small groups of pursuers 
have a better chance of tracking a group of evaders (as already reflected in the Evasion 
Table), and as stated in this section, a large group of creatures can break up into smaller 
groups, with each group checking separately on the Evasion Table.

   When determining if monsters decide to pursue or continue pursuit, the Rules Cyclopedia 
changes the "reaction roll" that was used in the Basic DM's Rulebook (which was just a roll of 
9 or more on 2d6), to now be a standard Morale Check for the monsters. I would just advise 
going ahead and playing it the way the Rules Cyclopedia has it.
   The Basic DM's Rulebook, p.17, also listed additional modifiers to use for this roll. But 
note that the Cyclopedia, p.103, says that adjustments to a Morale Check should never exceed a 
bonus of +2 or a penalty of -2. The adjustments listed in the Basic DM's Rulebook were much 
larger, possibly because there was no additional adjustment for the monsters' own 
bravery/cowardice when making the reaction roll of 9, as there will now be when making a 
standard Morale Check. You can still apply the adjustments if you want, but I have decreased 
each adjustment by one point, to fit in with the Cyclopedia method. Remember that these 
adjustments apply to the Morale Score itself, not to the dice roll:

When deciding to pursue:

-1 if any monsters have been slain.
 0 if any monster has been hit but not slain.
+1 if no monsters have been hit.
+2 if the monsters are hunting the players.

   You can also integrate the following information from Basic DM's Rulebook, p.17, into the 
paragraph entitled "The pursuers decide to give up the chase" (I've substituted Morale Checks 
for reaction rolls):

   Length of Pursuit: If nothing is dropped to cause them to stop, monsters will pursue for 
any length of time, as determined by further Morale Checks. After each 5 rounds of pursuit, 
make a Morale Check and apply the same adjustments to Morale for wounds as originally made (-
1, 0, +1). In addition, add +1 if the number of monsters is greater than the number of 
characters. If the adjusted Morale Check is successful, the monsters will continue to pursue 
(or search for) the characters. However, monsters will usually give up pursuit after 1-2 hours 
if the party has not been found, and will rarely continue searching longer than a day (8 
hours) unless some valuable item was stolen by the characters.

Page 102a, Combat:

Order of Combat

   The first important thing to note, is that there should be an additional step at the 
beginning of the Combat Sequence Checklist. You can pencil it in at the very top: "State 
Intentions First!" (see Basic DM's Rulebook, p.3) This has been left out of the Rules 
Cyclopedia, but it's a crucial step. Before initiative is rolled, all players must state what 
their characters intend to do during the round. The DM should give an indication of what the 
monsters appear to be doing as well. This solves so many potential questions that may come up, 
such as interrupting spellcasting, Setting a Spear vs. Charge, getting in an attack on someone 
who is making a Fighting Withdrawal/Retreat, or allowing a Fighter who loses initiative to 
Parry, etc.
   Note that the players don't have to be completely specific about their intentions, since 
choosing their targets doesn't happen till later in the round. They should just state if they 
are casting a Magic Missile spell, or drawing their sword and moving toward the monsters, or 
getting their bow and preparing to fire, or running and hiding in the shadows like a sniveling 
coward, etc.

   One additional thing I would add here, is to apply any existing Area Effects at the 
beginning of the round, just after the Intentions step. Area Effects would include such spells 
as Barrier, Creeping Doom, Confusion, Cloudkill, or effects such as burning oil or an Insect 
Swarm, or automatic damage from being Swallowed by certain monsters. If a creature starts his 
round within an Area Effect, apply the effect to him before he can otherwise act (notably, 
this will make spellcasting impossible in most cases for someone taking automatic damage each 
round). Any creature not already in the Area Effect at the beginning of the round, but that 
later enters the area (or the area moves around him), will be affected at that time (probably 
during a Movement phase).

Movement during Combat

   On page 102, the first paragraph says you can't RUN 20 feet and then attack.... That would 
indicate using RUNNING speed, which is 3 times your normal encounter speed (you'd have to be 
encumbered with 1,201 cn or more before 20 feet qualifies as Running Speed though... which is 
not unlikely for heavily-armored fighters. The Rules Cyclopedia should have used "120 feet" in 
this example so it would have been more clear). It's important to differentiate Running speed 
from Encounter speed, because you CAN actually move your Encounter Speed and still make an 
attack, as stated correctly in the rules under "Movement" on page 103.

   The second paragraph says a character can move up to 5 feet WHILE he is fighting, and this 
does not count as an action. It's saying that once you are ALREADY in hand-to-hand combat, you 
can move 5 feet (ONLY) without having to use a special maneuver. Moving more than 5 feet while 
you are in hand-to-hand combat will require a Fighting Withdrawal or a Retreat (see entry for 
Page 104). 
   Consider this 5' step to be a free action that can be taken once per round as part of 
making a melee attack. It must be taken at the beginning of your Hand-To-Hand phase, and only 
if you are actually making a melee attack. 

   To set down a definition, for the purpose of determining if your movement is restricted as 
above, you are considered to be "in hand-to-hand combat" when you begin the your Movement 
phase positioned within 5 feet of one or more hostile opponents who are capable of attacking 
(opponents are considered "capable of attacking" even if they have already attacked this 
round, but not if they have just moved at Running Speed, for example, which prevents them from 
making any attacks during the round). 
   Also, if during your Movement phase you step within 5' of such an opponent, you must end 
your movement immediately, as you are now considered to be in hand-to-hand combat with that 
opponent. This does not apply if you are moving by use of a Retreat or Fighting Withdrawal. 
However, when using a Retreat, if you pass through and leave an area within 5' of any such 
opponents, you are then considered to be Retreating from those opponents as well.

Individual Initiative

   The Optional Dexterity Adjustment for Individual Initiative is different than the standard 
adjustments for ability scores (because getting a +3 bonus to a d6 roll is way too much, and 
even a +2 should be very rare).

From the Basic Player's Manual, p.61 (or Master DM's Book, p.3):


 Dexterity Adjustment
    to Initiative

    3         -2
   4-5        -1
   6-8        -1
   9-12     No adj.
  13-15       +1
  16-17       +1
   18         +2

   Note that if you use this optional rule, it is going to unbalance Initiative for the vast 
majority of monsters the players will face, unless you are going to go to the trouble of 
determining the Dexterity score for every single monster you meet. I would recommend you only 
use these modifiers in relation to other PC's to determine who moves first during their turn 
or when fighting each other. The adjustments could also be used when fighting an NPC whose 
Dexterity score is known.
   Halflings, though, should get their +1 to Individual Initiative in every circumstance, 
because it is a racial ability.

Page 102b, Optional Order of Combat:

   This is a revision to the Combat Sequence Checklist. This option is found on page 11 of the 
Player's Guide to Immortals, but it states that it can be used by mortals as well. I really 
recommend using this method; I consider it superior to the standard, basic combat sequence 
(though the basic method does work well enough if you aren't interested in having better 
strategic options, and want to quickly run a battle with many participants). 
   As the Immortals set describes, "This combat sequence separates swifter actions from slower 
melee combat, providing the possibility of disrupting spells by causing damage to the 
caster." Specifically, all Movement and Missile Fire will happen before any Spells are cast or 
Melee attacks are made.
   To describe how this sequence works, we need to single out the "Swift" actions. To do that, 
we first have to divide the Magic step into two parts. So now, the main actions a character 
can take each round, revised from the current checklist, are:
   2. Movement
   3. Missile Combat
   4. Magic
      (I).  Use Magic Items

      (II). Cast Spells or use Spell-Like abilities
   5. Hand-to-Hand Combat
   Steps 2, 3, and 4(I) are Swift actions.  
   Steps 4(II) and 5 are slower actions.

   The remainder of the Combat Sequence Checklist remains the same, including the Intentions 
and Morale steps; I'm just not counting them as actions for the purpose of this explanation.

   Using this method, the side that won Initiative performs all its Swift actions, in order. 
Then the side that lost Initiative performs its Swift Actions, in order.
   Next, the side that won Initiative performs its remaining actions, in order. Then the side 
that lost Initiative performs its remaining actions, in order.
   Frank Mentzer has mentioned that one further detail should be included: the option to 
"Delay" actions, so that you can see what others are doing before you act. 
   I've made this idea into the following rule:
   The winner of Initiative may, at any point before completing some (or all) of his Swift 
actions, state that he wants to Delay them. His remaining Swift actions are then completed, in 
the appropriate order, along with his usual remaining actions later in the round.

   A Delay can be useful in many situations. An archer might want to wait for an enemy to move 
into range. A Fighter will want to stay within melee range of his opponent, in which case he 
needs to move to the position his opponent ends at, not the position the opponent starts at. 
In fact, a Fighter in Hand-to-Hand combat who wins Initiative will almost always want to Delay 
his Movement until after his opponent has moved, in case his opponent makes a Fighting 
Withdrawal. However, in cases where the opponent starts out at a distance, it can be better 
for the Fighter to move first and close to melee range to restrict his opponent's movement.

Movement Options

   Since each creature's Movement is now going to happen before any Melee attacks are made, 
characters can be allowed to move around more freely without being unfair to one side or the 
other. I've created some options to allow this.

   Unlike with the Basic Order of Combat, a character doesn't have to end his movement 
immediately upon coming within 5' of an opponent, and can also move normally during his 
Movement phase even if he started the round in Hand-to-Hand combat. However, unless the 
character is properly performing a Fighting Withdrawal or Retreat, he might trigger a Parting 
Blow or Misstep.

   First, to set down a definition, a "Melee Zone" is any area within 5 feet of an opponent 
who is capable of attacking you this round.

Parting Blow

   If you exit an opponent's Melee Zone and you are not properly using a Fighting Withdrawal 
or Retreat, they have the option to make a Parting Blow against you. If they choose to do so, 
their Hand-to-Hand phase (including their usual 5' step) starts immediately -- early and out 
of turn -- at any point they choose up until you finish your current movement. Later in the 
round when their Hand-to-Hand step comes up normally, if they have any unused multiple 
attacks, they can continue their Hand-to-Hand phase at that time.


   Starting from the beginning of your Movement phase, if you move more than 5' after being 
within an opponent's Melee Zone (even if you are moving further into their Melee Zone), you 
have made a Misstep. You suffer the same penalties as if you are Retreating from that opponent 
(i.e., they may attack you with a +2 To Hit, you lose any defensive bonuses from a shield or 
Weapon Mastery, and you cannot attack them in return). This Misstep penalty does not apply if 
you are properly making a Fighting Withdrawal or Retreat, nor does it apply to creatures that 
are using a special form of movement such as riding, flying, or jumping.

Special Combat Movement

   If a creature is riding a mount (or cart, or magical device) or flying (or swimming 
underwater, as this is similar to flying in 3 dimensions), the creature may make a Pass at its 
opponent instead of following the standard attack routine of Movement then Melee. The attacker 
moves any distance toward its opponent, then strikes and continues moving away. As soon as the 
opponent is within range, the attacker may make its normal melee attack(s) rather than waiting 
for its Hand-to-Hand phase to come up (by which time it will be out of range). A creature with 
multiple attacks may or may not be able to make all of its attacks against a single opponent 
while making a Pass (DM's judgement, depending on the creature and just what attacks are being 
used), but can often attack multiple opponents along its path.
   Of course, each opponent will usually be able to make a Parting Blow as the creature moves 

   This is based on how the Lance Attack (p.104) and Aerial Combat (p.114) function. Much of 
the Aerial Combat information on page 114 regarding weapon length, missile fire, and 
spellcasting is also applicable when riding non-flying mounts.

Page 103, Adjustments to the Morale Check:

   See entry for page 99 if you would like to use optional modifiers to the rolls regarding 

Page 104, Maneuvers:

   The chart at the top of the page is wacked. 
   - Fighting Withdrawal and Retreat happen during the Movement phase. 
   - Lance Attack (and other Charge or Swoop attacks) should happen during the    
     attacker's movement phase.
   - Set Spear vs. Charge gets its attack during the opponent's movement phase. 
   - Parry is in effect for the entire round.
   Note that all these maneuvers are actually announced during the Intentions step (see entry 
for page 102a about Order of Combat).

   Also, for the maneuvers in the chart with asterisks, it's useful to note, from the Players 
Companion Book, p.18 (with slight alterations):

   Fighter Combat Options are useable by:

   1. Name Level Paladins, Knights, or Avengers.
   2. Name Level, Land Owning Fighters who swear fealty to a ruler.
   3. Name Level Demi-Humans who become Knights within or outside of their clan.
   4. Demi-Humans with enough experience points to have the required Attack Ranks.
   5. Name Level Mystics.

   Other human classes may not use these maneuvers (including Fighters who do not achieve any 
special status) because they require special study of the art of hand-to-hand combat.

Fighting Withdrawal

   The rate of movement for a Fighting Withdrawal is, "up to 1/2 of your normal Encounter 
Speed," NOT "5 feet" (Basic Player's Manual, p. 60). Also I would note that you don't have to 
be completely withdrawing from all combat.... You could, for example, make a Fighting 
Withdrawal from your current opponent, and step within range of a different opponent which you 
could then attack, HOWEVER, you may as well have performed a Retreat, because you will be 
turning your back on your original opponent, which might give him the same opportunity to 
attack you from behind (+2 to hit, and no shield modifier to AC). On the other hand, if you 
did the same Fighting Withdrawal toward a different opponent (backing away from your original 
opponent toward a new one) and then didn't turn your back on the original one, then the new 
opponent could attack you from behind.... This maneuver is mainly ideal for backing toward 
your allies or an escape route.
   Rather than following the guidelines here that state a Withdrawing character gets to attack 
at the end of the enemy's movement phase (assuming the enemy follows the character), I 
recommend instead following the Order of Combat from the Immortals set (see entry for page 
102b), in which case the Withdrawing character will have the opportunity to attack on his 
usual Hand-to-Hand phase.

   By study of the Basic Player's Manual, p. 60, I think the bonuses gained when attacking a 
Retreating character should only be used by the opponent(s) that are actually being Retreated 
from (i.e., the opponent(s) that were in hand-to-hand combat with the Retreating character -- 
but possibly including other opponents who are standing near them as well). Just because the 
character is Retreating from one opponent, that doesn't mean he's Retreating from EVERY 
opponent on the battlefield.... In fact, he could possibly be moving TOWARD a different 
opponent in the battle, and therefore still be able to make an attack during his turn if he 
comes within range of the new opponent (since he's moving no faster than his normal encounter 
speed). The Retreating character will NOT be able to attack any of the opponents he was 
Retreating from, however, even if they follow him (he's totally left himself open and turned 
his back to them, and they can easily stay at his flank).
   Also note that the Retreating character, in addition to losing the benefit of his shield, 
won't be able to use any Weapon Mastery defenses against any opponent he is Retreating from.

  Remember to strictly enforce the qualifications for using these defensive maneuvers (both 
Fighting Withdrawal and Retreat): A character must begin the round in Hand-to-Hand combat, and 
(as noted in the Basic Players Manual, p.60) a character may NOT use these maneuvers if not 
declared during the Intentions step. This means you can't use a Fighting Withdrawal if you 
start the round 10' away from your opponent, even if you know he is going to move to melee 
range (if you have just successfully Withdrawn from him last round, for example). Otherwise, 
if using the Optional Order of Combat from the Immortals set (in which all Movement happens 
before Hand-to-Hand attacks, and the character with Initiative can Delay his Movement until 
after the opponent moves), it would become impossible in this situation to ever attack an 
opponent (Hand-to-Hand) who continually declares a Fighting Withdrawal. But if you enforce the 
qualifications above, then it all comes down to the Initiative roll; if the character wins 
Initiative he'll easily escape at his full movement rate. If he loses Initiative his opponent 
will move next to him, and Movement restrictions will kick in, leaving only the 5' of combat 
movement available.

Lance Attack

   The first sentence of the second paragraph is wrong, according to the Master Player's Book, 
p.16, which states, "Hit Roll Bonuses: The only weapon unaffected by ability score 
modifications is the lance, the use of which is completely dependent on a mount."
   Rather than strictly apply this to the lance, consider it an effect of using the Lance 
Attack maneuver, since a lance may also be Set vs. a Charge, or thrust like a spear if the 
mount hasn't charged 20 yards. In those cases Strength bonuses should apply, but when 
performing the Lance Attack, hitting and damaging really are more dependent on the mount.
   You may optionally also allow a Spear to be used for performing a Lance Attack, in which 
case this maneuver will also be available to Halflings (see entry for page 67 about the 

Set Spear vs. Charge

   The description here is vague, muddled, and even redefines what qualifies as a Charge 
Attack. Gathering from various places in the Rules Cyclopedia and the Expert Rulebook, here is 
the actual definition of a Charge Attack:

   CHARGE: If a monster with this special attack can run toward its opponent for 20 yards (20 
feet indoors) in one round, it inflicts double damage if it hits. A monster cannot charge in 
certain types of terrain: broken, heavy, forest, jungle, mountain, swamp, etc.

   A Set Spear vs. Charge can ONLY be used against that special attack (or against the Lance 
Attack), not against any monster that happens to be running toward you. The required distance 
of 20 yards/feet must be moved all in one round. Monsters only have the Charge Attack if it's 
listed in their description.

   Remember that a Set Spear vs. Charge will replace your normal attack, so you can't attack 
again when your hand-to-hand phase comes up (the set Spear gets its attack during the 
opponent's Movement phase).

   The other possible problem (having to declare your Set vs. Charge before your opponent 
moves) is cleared up if you correctly use the Intentions step which was omitted from the Rules 
Cyclopedia (see entry for page 102a about Order of Combat). The DM should indicate during the 
Intentions Step that the monster is about to charge.

Multiple Attacks

   The phrase, "In melee combat," is used in the second paragraph, but then the third 
paragraph indicates that Multiple Attacks can apply to thrown weapons as well. The other 
allowed attacks are the Lance Attack and the Disarm maneuver.
   As I suggested for Mystics when using their Multiple Hand Attacks (see entry for page 31b), 
I would allow Fighters with Multiple Attacks to make up to their full number of attacks each 
round until they score a hit, even if the opponent can't be hit on a roll of 2. In cases where 
the opponent can be hit with a roll of 2, then all of the Multiple Attacks attacks can be 
used, as usual.


   It's probably a good idea to place a limit so that when a Smash is performed, the 
character's Weapon Mastery should be counted as no higher than Basic level, since this is a 
brute force attack.
   I also really recommend that whenever a character is employing the Smash maneuver, it must 
be his only attack for the round; he must give up all multiple attacks including any 
additional off-hand attacks.
   And take note that the Strength score is added on as bonus damage on top of the base damage 
for the weapon; such bonus damage is never multiplied by effects that cause double damage (on 
page 105, steps 7 and 8 in the Attack Roll Checklist clearly state this).


   ... Oh my gosh, this maneuver doesn't have any errors!! ;)

New Maneuver - Shove

   I wanted a nice way to allow creatures to shove each other back or out of the way, so I 
came up with this system. It's based around the Open Doors mechanic. You could also easily 
adapt this system for use when opening doors as well, to give larger creatures a better 
chance, and smaller creatures less chance, of forcing a door open. A typical stuck door has a 
Resist rating of 5 with this system.

   A Shove replaces a creature's normal attack, and is counted as a Two-Handed attack 
(incurring the standard loss of Initiative penalty), but the hands don't necessarily have to 
be empty since this can take the form of a kick or ram. The attacker will not be able to 
otherwise use any objects he's holding though, so will lose any defensive bonuses from a 
Shield or Weapon Mastery. 

   The Shove attack can be made either during the attackers Hand-to-Hand Phase, or at the end 
of his Movement Phase. The attacker must make a Hit Roll against the defender, not counting 
the base Armor Class of any armor worn by the defender (all other modifiers such as shield, 
magic, and Dexterity still apply). 

   If contact is made, no damage is inflicted. Instead, the attacker then rolls a die based on 
his size, and must achieve a result based on the defender's size. Modifications apply. Base 
numbers are shown below:

           Shoving Table

 Size                Attack   Resist 
 Tiny    (under 2')    d2       1
 Small   (2' to 4')    d4       2
 Medium  (4' to 7')    d6       3
 Large   (7' to 12')   d8       4
 Giant   (12' to 25')  d10      5
 Immense (over 25')    d12      6

The Strength adjustment of the attacker is applied to his roll.
Give a +1 if the attacker runs at least 10 feet before hitting.

The resistance value of the defender is calculated as follows.
- Start with the Resist number from the table based on the size of the defender.
- Add 1/2 the defender's Hit Dice (round up, but creatures below 1/2 HD count as 0 HD).
- Apply any adjustments for the defender's Strength.
- Give +1 if the defender is on more than 2 legs or is prone/crawling.

   If the attacker rolls this number or higher, he may move to the position the defender was 
standing, and may shove the defender 5 feet away. The attacker may choose the direction he 
shoves the defender, and can even pull the defender backwards at an angle (not straight into 
himself), though if the attacker had a running start, the direction of the shove must be 
mostly forward. Any spellcasting or concentration by the defender will be disrupted at this 
point (a failed shove attempt can mean the spellcaster twisted aside and his spell was not 
disrupted, despite the shover's attack roll succeeding -- no damage was inflicted and the 
spellcaster wasn't actually pushed anywhere). If the shove occurs during the defender's 
Movement Phase, then that Movement Phase is immediately ended (this can happen when using the 
Optional Order of Combat described on page 102b).
   If the attacker rolls double the required number, then he can push the defender 10 feet, 
and the defender must also make a Saving Throw vs Paralysis at -2 or fall down (prone).
   Rolling 4 times that number results in a 15' shove and -4 to the defender's Saving Throw.

New Maneuver - Guard (for Basic Order of Combat only)

   While the Optional Order of Combat allows for more strategic options, I recognize that the 
standard Order of Combat can be faster to use, especially for large battles. But there are 
trade-offs when using the basic method, as some situations won't seem to work out right.... So 
here is an optional maneuver to help fix some of those situations (again, this should only be 
allowed when using the standard Order of Combat).

   A character who wins initiative has the option to perform a Guard, if he declared his 
intent to make a melee attack during the Intentions step. Rather than attacking during his 
hand-to-hand phase (in case no opponent is within range then), he Guards his current position 
and waits for his opponents to move. Then, if an opponent moves within range, he can attack it 
at the end of the opponent's movement phase. Only melee attacks may be used for the Guard, and 
this maneuver may not be used if the character is otherwise restricted from making an attack.
   This is basically the same as how the attack works after a Fighting Withdrawal if the 
opponent follows the Withdrawing character. 

   Anyone familiar with the old Gold Box AD&D Computer Games (Secret of the Silver Blades, 
etc.) will recognize this maneuver....

   One additional note I would add, when using the standard Order of Combat, the winner of 
Initiative (only) should be allowed to voluntarily give up initiative for strategic reasons, 
if desired. In terms of game mechanics (especially when multiple combatants are involved), 
just convert the initiative roll of anyone who wants to "Delay" into a negative number, and 
run the initiative order as usual, from highest to lowest.

Page 105, The Attack Roll:

   The rule here that says, "A natural roll of 20 always hits," is not accurate, if you go by 
the Mentzer-edited rules. That rule as stated in the Rules Cyclopedia (a 20 ALWAYS hitting) 
was present in some editions of the game, and is probably a very popular "house rule," but it 
does not appear in that form in the 1983-1986 D&D rules which the Rules Cyclopedia was derived 
from (or in 1E AD&D for that matter).

   The Expert Rulebook, page 29, describes it like this:

   "Unless the target is invulnerable to normal weapons, or a number greater than 20 is needed 
and there are no bonuses, a roll of 20 will always hit, and a roll of 1 will always miss.
   "A natural 20 without bonuses will not hit creatures that require a Hit Roll of greater 
than 20."

   To state it clearly, even if you have penalties to your attack roll, a natural roll of 20 
will always hit any Armor Class that doesn't require a roll higher than 20 on your Hit Roll 
chart. In order to hit Armor Classes that require a Hit Roll greater than 20, you will need 
bonuses to your attack roll.

   Also remember that the number 20 repeats 5 times on the Hit Roll charts, so a natural 20 
can still hit 5 Armor Classes better than a 19 without bonuses. In fact, for almost every 
situation, handling this rule either way will have the same results.... It will only make a 
difference in very rare circumstances.

Note on Double Damage/Half Damage

   There are many effects in the game that result in "Double Damage." While this mechanic was 
never explicitly explained in the previous editions, the wording of some magic items implied 
that ONLY the damage for the WEAPON is doubled, and not any other damage bonuses (using terms 
like "double normal damage" or "twice the amount rolled"). The Cyclopedia is more specific in 
indicating that only the normal damage for the weapon is doubled, and then any additional 
damage modifiers (e.g., magic or Strength bonuses) are added to the total. On page 105, steps 
7 and 8 on the Attack Roll Checklist clearly state this. For more examples, read the 
description of Backstab on page 23, and Lance Attack and Set Spear vs. Charge on page 104.

   The procedure is the same for Half Damage. The "1/2" is considered a multiplier that is 
applied to the damage roll before any damage bonuses are added on. Also, it states in the 3rd 
paragraph under "Special Defenses" on page 27, "When modifying sustained damage, always round 
fractions down. If the result is 1/2 point of damage or less, the character takes 1 point of 
damage." This is the case in every Half Damage example given in the Cyclopedia, so should be 
applied in all cases where it doesn't specifically instruct you to round up.
   Another option for "Double Damage" is to just double the number of dice rolled for the 
attack, then add all usual modifiers after that. This is how Frank Mentzer does it.

Non-Standard Targeting

   There are situation where, rather than trying to hit and damage an opponent, you just need 
to make solid contact. This applies, for example, if you're trying to entangle your opponent 
(with a Net, Whip, or Bola), douse him with oil/holy water, or touch him with a Torch after 
dousing him in oil. In these situation you don't need to get past the target's armor for the 
attack to be effective.
   For those type of attacks, ignore the standard Armor Class of any armor the target is 
wearing (this will usually result in a base AC of 9, but not always; consider a Mystic or a 
monster wearing Barding...). Apply all the other usual adjustments to the AC of the target.
   The usual adjustments include: any magical bonuses of the armor being worn, shield bonuses, 
other magical bonuses from protective magical items or spells, Dexterity adjustments, and 
Weapon Mastery defense bonuses (which can include the use of Deflect). If a Missile Attack is 
being made, then include all the usual modifiers for that too (e.g., Cover). 

   Note that even when using non-standard targeting, if the Hit Roll is high enough to hit the 
standard AC of the target as well, then normal damage can also be inflicted in addition to 
other effects. Example: if you shoot a flaming arrow at a target that is doused in oil, you 
only need to hit the non-standard AC to ignite the target. If you also roll high enough to hit 
the standard AC of the target, then you also inflict standard arrow damage.

   A different method is also needed in cases where you want to target an item possessed by 
your opponent. Some common examples might include attacks by such things as a Rod of 
Cancellation, Staff of Dispelling, Touch Dispel, Rust Monster attacks upon equipment, or 
simply trying to break an item being carried by an opponent (in which case, consult the entry 
for page 145 to find rules for item breakage). The Disarm maneuver, however, targets the 
opponent himself rather than his weapon....
   The only guidance I found in the Cyclopedia in regard to this is for the Rod of 
Cancellation, p.237, which says, "The target is treated as having an Armor Class of 9. The DM 
may adjust the Armor Class of an item if it is being used in combat (such as when trying to 
hit a sword)."

   So consider any item being targeted to have a base AC of 9, then apply all the usual 
adjustments (listed above) except as noted below:


               Hitting an Opponent's Items

   Target    Base AC   Do not adjust for:                 
   Armor        9                                         
   Shield       9      Normal shield bonus (a)
  (Wielded)            Magic armor bonuses                
   Weapon       9      That weapon's Mastery defenses (b) 
  (Wielded)            Magic armor bonuses                
  Other item    9 (c)  Magic armor bonuses                

(a) But DO adjust for the shield's magical bonus, if any.

(b) This includes the Deflect ability. In fact, if the opponent made a successful Deflect with 
the weapon you are targeting, that would still indicate a successful hit on that weapon. So 
it's probably a bad idea for anyone to try to Deflect attacks from a Rust Monster that is 
targeting his metal weapon. However, if the opponent uses a different weapon (an off-hand 
weapon) to Deflect, that doesn't necessarily indicate the off-hand weapon was "hit," since it 
wasn't being targeted by the attack....

(c) As a rule of thumb, this assumes an item of at least 9 inches in length or width. For each 
inch smaller, the item will be 1 AC lower. So an item that is 3 inches in length would have a 
base AC of 3. A tiny object of less than 1 inch in length (an earring, for example) might have 
a base AC of 0. Additional penalties will apply if you're using Missile fire to hit such an 
object (see the entry for page 108 about Missile Fire Size Adjustments).

Page 106-107, Alternate Hit Roll System:

   This is a plug-in system for removing all the charts and tables from Hit Rolls.

   The Hit Roll vs. Armor Class Charts are bulky and cumbersome and time-consuming to 
reference when in the middle of a battle. I also never liked the mental math that was involved 
when using the THAC0 vs. Armor Class method. So I've come up with the following system to 
calculate Hit Rolls. It replaces all the Hit Roll vs. Armor Class tables (for every character 
and monsters in the game) with one simple chart and a few easy formulas. It also looks at 
Armor Class in reverse, so that the higher your Armor Rating, the harder you are to hit; it 
seems more intuitive that way. This system takes more words to explain because you don't have 
all the charts to look at, but once you ditch the charts and start using this system, things 
flow very quickly and easily in combat.

   I know other people have come up with similar systems; however, I believe mine to be the 
only one that completely covers all possibilities and correctly correlates to the Hit Roll 
charts at all levels of play. In fact, even the THAC0 method breaks down at the high and low 
ends of the Hit Roll charts....

   The advantages to this system are that you don't have to reference any charts or make many 
calculations during combat (other than adding all your bonuses to your Hit Roll), and also, 
since it's a plug-in system, you don't have to change any of the current rules; you still 
determine your Armor Class as usual. All you need to do is just keep track of two new numbers. 
I'll call them Armor Rating (so as not to actually replace Armor Class) and Hit Roll Modifier 
(which replaces the need to use a Hit Roll vs. Armor Class chart).

   AR (Armor Rating) is basically AC, only expressed as the actual number you need to roll in 
order to hit.
   To get your AR, just subtract your AC from 20, and make a note of it on your character 
sheet next to your AC. The same applies to Monsters: to find their AR, use 20 - AC.

   To get your HRM (Hit Roll Modifier), you can just subtract your THAC0 from 20 (but at high 
levels, be sure you're using your correct THAC0 and not just reading straight from the Hit 
Roll chart). Make a note of your HRM on your character sheet too.
   For Monsters up to 10 HD, it's simple to determine their HRM: just use their HD. If they 
have a '+' after their HD, then their HRM = HD + 1.

   Or, to accurately find anything's HRM, use the following table:

            All-Inclusive Hit Roll Chart
 Magic-  Cleric/  Fighter/Mystic/
  User    Thief      Demi-Human    Monster       HRM
                                 Normal human    +0
  1-5      1-4      1-3            up to 1       +1
---------------------------------- 1+ to 2 ----- +2
  6-10     5-8      4-6            2+ to 3       +3
---------------------------------- 3+ to 4 ----- +4
 11-15     9-12     7-9    A       4+ to 5       +5
-------------------------- B ----- 5+ to 6 ----- +6
 16-20    13-16    10-12   C       6+ to 7       +7
-------------------------- D ----- 7+ to 8 ----- +8
 21-25    17-20    13-15   E       8+ to 9       +9
-------------------------- F ----- 9+ to 11 --- +10
 26-30    21-24    16-18   G      11+ to 13     +11
-------------------------- H ---- 13+ to 15 --- +12
 31-35    25-28    19-21   I      15+ to 17     +13
-------------------------- J ---- 17+ to 19 --- +14
  36      29-32    22-24   K      19+ to 21     +15
-------------------------- L ---- 21+ to 23 --- +16
          33-35    25-27   M      23+ to 25     +17
--------------------------------- 25+ to 27 --- +18
           36      28-30          27+ to 29     +19
--------------------------------- 29+ to 31 --- +20
                   31-33          31+ to 33     +21
--------------------------------- 33+ to 35 --- +22
                   34-36          35+ and up    +23

   Once you have your AR and HRM, it's easy to determine if you hit in combat. You make your 
Hit Roll and apply all the usual adjustments, then add your HRM to the total. The final total 
tells you what AR you hit (and of course, you hit any lower AR too).

   An Ogre attacks a Fighter in Platemail: 
   Ogre is 4+1 HD, so its HRM = +5 
   Platemail is AC 3, so AR = 17 (a quick 20 - AC) 
   So the Ogre hits if it rolls a 12 or higher (12 +5 = 17)
   Fast and simple, and no charts required.

   It's important to calculate all other adjustments to your Hit Roll before you add your HRM, 
because that total is adjusted as follows:

   If your Hit Roll + adjustments = 1 or less, you get a -4 penalty to the total.
   If your Hit Roll + adjustments = 20 or more, you get a +4 bonus to the total.

   In extreme circumstances, your Hit Roll + adjustments might even total 30 or higher. In 
that case, you get an additional +4 bonus (for a total of +8). The bonus for getting a 20 does 
NOT count toward getting a 30 though; you have to reach the 30 with just your Hit Roll + 
standard adjustments.
   Like the hit Roll tables, this pattern can (even though it's really unnecessary) be 
extrapolated indefinitely, adding another +4 bonus for every 10 points.

   A 5th level Fighter (+3 HRM) with a +1 Strength bonus and a +2 sword.
   He makes a hit roll of 18; after adding his Hit Roll bonuses, he comes up with 21.
   Since he reached 20 (or higher) before adding his HRM, he gets +4 bonus points.
   So after adding his HRM to that, his total is 28, meaning he hit AR 28 (equal to AC -8).
   You can check the Hit Roll charts and see that's correct.

   Next, to correctly account for the "natural 20" rule according to the Expert Set (see entry 
for page 105 above), use the following rule:

   On a natural roll of 20, despite the presence of any negative modifiers, you will always 
hit at least an AR equal to your HRM + 24
   Also remember that a natural roll of 1 will always miss, no matter what.

   Finally, we need a way to account for the "Extra Damage" option explained on page 108 (if 
you choose not to use the extra damage rule, just count any attack with a final adjusted total 
of 1 or less as a miss). 
   To calculate extra damage, you'll need to keep another number in mind. I'll call this your 
Overpower Level, or OL. It represents being so skilled that you can completely overpower any 
AR of that level or lower. Your OL is equal to your HRM - 4.

   If any target has an AR equal to or less than your OL, you miss only on a natural roll of 
1, and you do bonus damage equal to your OL - AR of target (with a maximum of +10 bonus 

   A 30th level Fighter, from the chart, has a +19 HRM, so his OL is 15 (HRM - 4). 
   He attacks a Kobold that has a 13 AR (AC 7). 
   That AR is equal to or below his OL, so he will always hit unless he rolls a natural 1. 
   Additionally, he'll do 2 points of bonus damage: 15 (his OL) - 13 (Kobold's AR) = 2.

   In extremely rare circumstances, even more bonus damage can be attained. When really 
vulnerable targets are hit by really powerful attackers, a second Overpower Level, or OL2, can 
come into play. Your OL2 is equal to your OL - 14. If a target has an AR lower than your OL2, 
you can do additional bonus damage equal to your OL2 - AR of target. Again there is a maximum 
of +10 additional bonus damage, but this is added to the +10 points of bonus damage you got 
from your first OL (for a maximum of +20 bonus damage at this level).
   And again (but absolutely unnecessary), this pattern can be extrapolated indefinitely, with 
each progressive OL being 14 points below the last, and each granting an additional maximum of 
+10 bonus damage.

   Some of this may seem a bit complicated because I'm allowing for every situation that is 
covered (and implied) by the original Hit Roll tables, however, the basic things you need to 
know in order to use this system are actually pretty simple. I'll summarize them below, but 
first I want to include this paragraph from the Master DM's Book, p.11, because it's important 
to apply adjustments in the proper places, especially with this system.

   Modifying Hit Rolls or Armor Class

   All adjustments to attack ability should be applied to the Hit Roll of the attacker, but 
any defensive effects should cause adjustments to the Armor Class of the target. Strength, 
Dexterity, magic, range to the target, and other factors may affect the Hit Roll. Armor, 
cover, magic, etc. affect the Armor Class of the target. Whenever an adjustment could be 
applied either way, apply it to the Armor Class of the target.

Here's the basic summary of everything:

You don't have to change any game mechanics; you just look at the numbers in an easier way. 
You determine your standard AC number as usual, and still keep track if it on your character 
sheet. Just also make a note of your Armor Rating and your Hit Roll Modifier.

AR = 20 - AC
HRM = 20 - THAC0 (or use the chart)

In combat:
Hit Roll + standard adjustments + HRM = AR you hit

Before adding HRM:
If Hit Roll + adjustments = 1 or less, you get a -4 penalty
If Hit Roll + adjustments = 20 or more, you get a +4 bonus
A natural 20 will always hit at least an AR equal to your HRM + 24

For optional extra damage, note your Overpower Level:
OL = HRM - 4
You will hit any AR equal to or lower than your OL unless you roll a natural 1
You do bonus damage equal to your OL - AR of target (maximum of +10 damage)

Page 108, Attack Roll Modifiers:

Attack Roll Modifiers

   In the Attack Roll Modifiers Table, "Larger than man-sized monster attacks halfling" should 
be -2, not -1 (this error was probably copied from the same error in the Basic DM's Rulebook, 
p.16), though technically this is an adjustment to the Halfling's Armor Class, not to the 
attacker's hit roll.

   There is also room in the chart just above that to pencil in: "Blind -6"

   For the footnote in the table regarding attacking from behind, not only do you ignore the 
opponent's shield, you also ignore any Weapon Mastery defense bonuses he might have.

Missile Fire - Cover Adjustments

   There are two problems here.... The first is that the numbers given for Hard Cover in the 
table become too high. The second is that if you account only for cover and not for the size 
of the target, things get weird.
   Here's an example to illustrate this: A 10' tall Ogre is standing beside a 3' tall 
Halfling. The Ogre is standing behind a 5' tall boulder, giving him 50% Hard Cover, while the 
Halfling is standing on top of the boulder. Using the table here, anyone trying to hit the 5' 
of exposed Ogre with Missile Fire would be at -4 to hit, but anyone shooting at the 3' of 
Halfling would have no penalty to hit.... The part of the Ogre that is exposed is a much 
larger target, but for some reason is much harder to hit....
   This can be fixed by first reducing the modifiers for Hard Cover. The table here was 
inherited from the Master Players' Book, p.17, which is in disagreement with the original 
rules for Cover in the Basic Players Manual, p.60, where it's stated that cover adjustments 
range from -1 to -4 -- which represents Full Cover. Keeping close to those numbers, I find the 
best-written rules for handling cover are from the 1991 D&D Game Rulebook, page 26:
   An attacker suffers a -1 penalty to hit for each quarter of the target's body that is 
protected by cover. If the attacker's missile weapon cannot penetrate the cover, subtract an 
additional -1. If the target's cover adjustment totals -5 points, the target is completely 
hidden behind something the attacker's missile weapon cannot penetrate. No attack is possible. 
If a character who is completely hidden chooses to use a missile attack, he must expose at 
least a quarter of his body to attack.
Expressed as a table, it now looks like this:

       Missile Target Cover Table
 Target has:  Soft Cover:  Hard Cover:
 1/4 cover       -1           -2
 1/2 cover       -2           -3
 3/4 cover       -3           -4
 Full cover      -4        Can't hit

Missile Fire - Size Adjustments

   The second part of the fix is to add an adjustment to Missile Fire based on the size of the 
target. I found some base numbers to work with in the 1979 Holmes-edited rulebook, page 19, 
where it lists adjustments based on target size which were used when throwing flasks of oil... 
but the same principle can be applied to all forms of Missile Fire.

      Missile Target Size Table 
 Target Size           Example    Adj.
 under 1'              Bat        -3
 1' to 2'   (Tiny)     Pixie      -2
 2' to 4'   (Small)    Halfling   -1
 4' to 7'   (Medium)   Human       0
 7' to 12'  (Large)    Ogre       +1
 12' to 25' (Giant)    Giant      +2
 over 25'   (Immense)  Dragon     +3

Generally, a cover adjustment will outweigh a size adjustment. So an Ogre with 1/2 cover (-2 
total adjustment) would still be slightly harder to hit than a Halfling with no cover (-1 
adjustment) -- the Ogre has the option to quickly duck behind the cover as he's being shot at, 
while the Halfling is stuck out in the open.

Targets Within 5'

   Note that it specifically refers to missile DEVICES here, which seems to indicate that 
hand-hurled weapons CAN actually be thrown effectively at targets within 5'. The notes about 
Missile Fire in the Mentzer sets also seem to support this interpretation.

Partial Targets (Optional)
   In my opinion, this is not a good optional rule to use. Even though a round is 10 seconds 
long, it only takes a few seconds to actually launch a missile attack; the target doesn't need 
to be visible for the entire 10 seconds in order to be effectively targeted. Just stick to 
using a Cover modifier of -1 to -4 in situations like this, at the DM's judgement.
   A good optional rule can be derived from here though; you could allow any Cover modifiers 
to apply toward appropriate Saving Throws. For example, If you are 3/4 shielded behind solid 
cover when a Dragon uses a breath weapon on you, you could gain a +4 bonus to your Saving 
Throw. Note that most magical effects will be at full strength if even part of the target is 
visible... so the DM must decide if Cover will offer any protection in each case.

Page 110, Two Weapons Combat:

   Two Weapon Combat was only rudimentarily mentioned in the Master Players' Book (page 19). 
The Rules Cyclopedia has expanded the rules, stating them in terms of "first attack" and 
"second attack," and saying that the attacker can decide each round which weapon he uses first 
and which he uses second. However, this results in things becoming complicated when describing 
how Two Weapon Combat interacts with Multiple Attacks and Weapon Mastery, because effective 
Weapon Mastery ranks can change during each round of combat depending on which weapon is used 

   I believe things can be much simplified by instead basing Two Weapon Combat on the use of a 
character's Primary Hand and Off Hand (a player may, if he wishes, specify that his character 
is right or left handed).
   This way you only need to state that any off-hand attack will suffer a -4 penalty to hit 
and -1 level of Weapon Mastery (excepting those weapons which suffer no off-hand penalty). A 
character can make one off-hand attack in addition to his primary attack(s). A character 
holding a weapon in each hand can swap which weapon is held in which hand by giving up 
initiative for the round.
   Now it becomes much easier to keep track of Mastery levels and to describe how Two Weapon 
Combat interacts with Multiple Attacks (instead of taking up half a page, as it does in the 
Cyclopedia): A character with multiple attacks can make up to his allowed number of attacks 
with his primary weapon, and may also make one off-hand attack, as usual.

   Now some specific notes on using Two Weapon combat.

   I strongly recommend that when attacking with two weapons at a time, at least one of them 
has to be size Small (either the primary weapon or the off-hand weapon; it doesn't matter 

   Also, I recommend that a character who attacks with two weapons at a time should be treated 
as if he's using a Two-Handed attack (i.e., he will lose initiative against opponents who use 
one-handed attacks). I think this follows the reasoning behind other 2H attacks: you are able 
to inflict more damage, but this is balanced because you have a slower attack routine. 
Alternately, you could say only his second attack happens last in the round.
   This even applies when making extra attacks with weapons (or unarmed Strikes) that suffer 
no off-hand penalties (e.g., Shield Weapons or Cestus). However, it does not apply if you 
aren't actually making both Primary and Off-Hand attacks in a round, such as when using a 
Shield Weapon only for defensive bonuses, or when attacking with an off-hand weapon instead of 
the primary one (the player must state during the Intentions step if he's planning on making 
such attacks or not).

   Furthermore, I recommend that the -1 level of Weapon Mastery penalty SHOULD be applied even 
if the character only has Basic Mastery of his off-hand weapon (the guideline here that says 
"Basic stays at Basic" wasn't given in the Master's set). This will mean that a character with 
Basic Mastery of his off-hand weapon will only inflict half damage with it (as if using it at 
Unskilled level). This won't apply to the weapons that don't suffer off-hand penalties, but it 
will otherwise help keep Two Weapon fighting from becoming overpowered.

   Defense bonuses and special abilities of the weapons being used should not have cumulative 
effects. The player must chose which weapon's defense bonuses or special abilities to use 
during a round. Though he could, for example, use the AC bonus from his off-hand weapon along 
with the Disarm ability of his primary weapon; he just can't combine abilities that are 
present in both weapons. 
   In other words, using the example given of a character attacking with Expert Mastery for 
his primary attack with a normal sword (H:-2AC/2, Deflect 2, disarm save +1), and Skilled 
Mastery for his off-hand attack with a short sword (H:-1AC/1, Deflect 1, disarm save +1), he 
would not get H:-3AC/1, nor 3 Deflects, nor Disarm with a +2 to save, or any other combination 
thereof. If he uses a defense bonuses or special ability from one of his weapons, he can't use 
the same defense bonus or special ability from his other weapon that round.
   Generally, a player would chose to use the defense bonus of the weapon with the higher 
effective Mastery, but that may not always be the case when the off-hand weapon has bonuses 
against a certain target type and the primary weapon does not.
   This should also be applied to Shield Weapons (see entry for pages 65-66 about Shield 
Weapons); the wielder of a Shield Weapon may either use the defensive bonus of the Shield 
Weapon or that of his primary weapon, but not both during the same round. Shield Weapons 
should be treated as weapons, not as shields, because they basically provide a free second 
attack and have no off-hand Weapon Mastery penalties, so limiting them in this way seems 

Page 111-112, Striking:

   The first small section about Unarmed Combat (starting on p.110) is the simple method from 
the Expert Rulebook, which says unarmed attacks do a base of 1 point of damage. This can be 
used if you don't want to bother with the more complex rules for Striking and Wrestling that 
follow. If you use the complex rules, just keep in mind that the base damage for Striking is 0 
rather than 1.
   You could also allow the players to choose which type of strike they are making each time 
they attack unarmed; they could choose to make a basic damaging attack (with the base of 1 
damage and no other effects), or they can go for the more skillful Striking attack (base of 0 
damage, but with special effects and Mastery potential).


   I would allow Stun results (but not Knockout) even if the attacker if only half the size of 
the victim (but no smaller than that). This way a Halfling can Stun a human; a hard kick to 
the shin or punch to the gut (or other sensitive area within reach of a Halfling!) could 
certainly Stun a human for a time.

Stun Effects

   Since the Stun result for Striking is more like a Weapon Mastery effect, I recommend using 
the lesser (2 point) Stun penalties as listed on page 81. Otherwise, the Stun from being hit 
with a bare fist would be more powerful than the Stun from being hit with a Blackjack or Two-
Handed Sword....

Optional Rules for Striking

1. Punching: You may want to further specify that knockouts can only be achieved from strikes 
to the opponent's head (and see the restrictions mentioned in the entry for page 63). Also, 
the opponent will only suffer the longer-duration stun if he fails the usual Saving Throw vs. 
Death Ray at +4. As with knockouts, characters with less than 4 HD cannot achieve the longer-
duration stuns.
   In regard to Two Weapon Combat (see page 110), I would also make sure to specify that any 
non-punching attacks (head-butt, kick, elbow, etc.) must be treated as the character's Primary 
attack. "Off-hand" kick attacks, for example, should not be allowed, and a character can't use 
his primary weapon's Mastery options when he's making such an attack (he'll be using the 
Mastery options for Striking as his primary attack instead). Of course, off-hand punches are 
allowed if the character has an empty off hand, but this suffers all the usual penalties for 
Two-Weapon fighting.

2. Tough Opponents: This should only apply to MONSTERS with more Hit Dice than the attacker, 
because there's no reason a 4th level Fighter couldn't knock out a 5th level Magic-User.

5. Objects in Hand: There is no down side to using this tactic, so everyone would be using it 
freely, all the time.... So I recommend a -2 penalty to Hit when Striking with an object in 
hand. The 'object' could include a typical weapon, such as when a character punches someone 
while holding sword in the same hand. 

7. Fighter Combat Options, Smash: This also incurs the usual loss of initiative penalty. I 
also recommend that it must be the character's only attack for the round; he must give up all 
multiple attacks including any additional off-hand attacks. 

Boxing Mastery Table

   The Boxing Unarmed Combat Mastery Table values for damage need some alteration. First off, 
the base damage for Striking at Basic Mastery is supposed to be 0, as stated in the Striking 
Procedure Checklist on page 111 (just as in the Companion set). The following modified 
progression works better for Striking (based mostly on the way damage for the blackjack 
progresses). You can treat this damage as "bonus damage" and allow the attacker to use all or 
none of it, as described in optional rule #3 about "pulling the punch."


Striking Damage Progression

Lvl.  Bonus Damage
 BS       0
 SK      +2
 EX      +3
 MS     P:+5  S:+4
 GM     P:+6  S:+5

   Also, I really think the Primary Target Type for Striking should be M (which includes 
unarmed humans) rather than H (weapon-users). Boxing should be more effective against an 
unarmed opponent rather than one swinging a sword....

Page 112-114, Wrestling:

Initiative, Armed vs. Unarmed

   This rule is rather vague and doesn't work well, and should probably just be ignored. Just 
remember that Wrestling is a "2H" attack, and will always lose initiative against opponents 
who use 1H attacks.

Preparing for Wrestling
   In the Wrestling Rating Checklist, step 1 should actually say "Divide the character's Hit 
Dice by two, rounding up," (as indicated in the last paragraph under this section). This is a 
revision in the Cyclopedia, since the Companion set said to use the character's Level, but I 
agree with this revision; using HD keeps things more balanced.

   And note that for step 3, the unmodified AC is always counted as 9 for Mystics.
   Also, the next-to-last paragraph in this section is not quite right where it says, 
"Remember, magic bonuses and Dexterity adjustments do not apply to Wrestling Rating." 
   Dexterity adjustments DO apply to your Wrestling Rating; they just don't apply when finding 
your unmodified Armor Class.

   I also suggest that any special penalties to a creature's Armor Class should be applied in 
reverse to the creature's Wrestling Rating. For example, a Stunned creature suffers a +4 
penalty to his AC. This should cause a -4 Penalty to his Wrestling Rating. Note that being 
Prone or Entangled won't affect Wrestling Rating because they don't affect AC; they instead 
give opponents a bonus to their attack rolls.

Wrestling Procedure

   Important: it states here that if a character is doing something other than Wrestling, he 
does not get to add his Wrestling Rating (WR) to his Wrestling roll when defending against a 
Wrestler. This was not stated in the Companion set and I think it should be ignored. And keep 
in mind that unintelligent creatures will always use their natural attacks rather than try to 
Wrestle... so they would never add their WR to their Wrestling roll, meaning they will always 
be easily defeated by Wrestling, no matter how big they are (it would be as if they didn't 
even have a WR). A creature's WR is an indication of how difficult it is to Wrestle whether or 
not it is actually attempting to Wrestle in return, so its WR should always be added to its 
Wrestling roll.
   That said, I think the idea behind this rule (someone who is not focusing on Wrestling will 
be easier to overcome) is a very good one. What I recommend is to use the same modifier as 
listed on page 113 under "Wrestlers Being Attacked." It shows that if a character is trying to 
do something else (in this case, hold on to a different person) when a wrestler attacks him, 
he gets a -4 penalty to his WR when defending against that wrestler. This -4 modifier to WR 
could apply to any creature that is doing something other than Wrestling when it's defending 
against a wrestler.

Wrestling Effects

   There is a change here saying that a pinned character may continue to Wrestle with a -3 
penalty to his Wrestling Rating. The Players Companion, page 7, simply stated, "A Pinned 
character can do nothing." Here I recommend sticking with the Companion set information. The 
Pinned creature is at the mercy of the pinner, and only has a chance to escape (by rolling a 
natural 20) if the pinner attempts to inflict damage. Of course, the pinner also cannot do 
anything else while holding the victim.... Though another person could, for example, tie up 
the pinned creature while the pinner holds it.
   However, if the pinned creature has multiple attacks, and all of its attacks have not been 
disabled (see Optional Rule 3, below), then it could still choose to Wrestle with the -3 
penalty rather than making its remaining normal attacks. This penalty can increase depending 
on the Wrestling Mastery of the pinner.

Wrestling Mastery Table

   The Wrestling Unarmed Combat Mastery Table has messed-up values for damage. It looks like 
it was mostly just copied from the Striking Table, which is really odd. The second paragraph 
of the middle column on page 113 states (as in the Companion set) that a pinning character can 
inflict 1-6 points of damage, at the "Basic level" of Mastery. However, I'm going to recommend 
that the damage at Basic level should start at 1-4 points (already the same as stabbing 
someone with a dagger), plus Strength adjustments.
   I've created a new damage progression for Wrestling to fit with this, but first I want to 
say that I don't think Wrestling should be included with true Weapon Mastery. Wrestling is 
completely different from all other attacks used in Weapon Mastery (even unarmed Striking is 
basically the same as a standard melee attack).
   What I'm suggesting is that Wrestling should be a General Skill only. The standard (Basic) 
level of Wrestling can be used by anyone, but to train to higher ranks you have to take the 
Wrestling General Skill (see entry for pages 83-85 for details on this).

   Now, to fix the Mastery table for Wrestling, first change the "Primary Target type" to "A" 
(All), since it doesn't at all make sense to have wrestlers deal different amounts of damage 
based on whether or not the pinned victim is holding a weapon....
   The following table creates a smooth progression, increasing the average pinning damage by 
1 point for each step along the way (most weapons typically increase their average damage by 2 
points for each step, but again, Wrestling shouldn't really follow the same pattern as a 
weapon -- especially when treating it as a General Skill).


Wrestling Damage Progression

Lvl.    Damage
 BS      1d4
 SK      1d6
 EX      1d8
 MS      1d10
 GM      1d12

Multiple Wrestlers

   There is a problem here with the rules for Group Wrestling: basing the bonus to the group 
Wrestling Rating completely upon comparative Hit Dice of the members of the group can produce 
strange results. 
   I'm going to just recommend ditching all the calculations for Group Wrestling (they just 
complicate things and don't work well), and simply have each individual in the group make a 
separate Wrestling Roll against their single opponent. Each successful roll against the same 
opponent will move that opponent down the usual progression of Grab, Takedown, and Pin, so 3 
wrestlers working together could potentially Pin an opponent in a single round.
   In cases where the defending creature decides to wrestle back (rather than just defend 
against the group of wrestlers) and actually scores a grab upon one member of the group, 
remember that this will give him a -4 penalty when defending against the other wrestlers, as 
noted above. 

Wrestlers Being Attacked

   Next, the second paragraph under "Wrestlers Being Attacked" wasn't covered in the Companion 
Set, and I recommend changing it a bit. I suggest that any character who is actively Wrestling 
(whether he's the grabber or the grabbed) should be treated as if he is Prone (see page 150) 
against attacks from people he is not Wrestling. And as stated here, his Dexterity adjustment 
is not applied to his AC as long as he chooses to focus on Wrestling.
   In the case of a creature who is only trying to defend against a wrestler and not Wrestle 
in return, he will instead incur the standard penalties for being grabbed, taken down, or 
pinned (see the entry for page 113, below).

   Additionally, you can allow a Wrestler who has grabbed, taken down, or pinned an opponent 
to attempt other actions and attacks without fully releasing the opponent he's holding (e.g., 
if he's grabbed someone from behind then wants to slit their throat... or if he wants to try 
to keep hold of his victim while fighting off another opponent). The following should apply:

- He's still basically treated as a Wrestler (for Initiative purposes, etc.).
- If he's Pinned a victim, that victim automatically reverts to being merely Taken Down.
- The only actions available to him are the same actions which are currently available to the
  victim he's grabbed or taken down (as described in Wrestling Effects).
- He gets the standard bonus to hit his held victim (see Effects of Being Restrained, below).
  Or he may attack other opponents, but is treated as if he's Prone against them, as usual.
- Since he's not focusing on Wrestling, he gets the usual -4 penalty to WR. If he wins 
  Wrestling Rolls against his victim, it only means he maintains the current hold. The victim 
  gets its usual defensive Wrestling Roll at the end of its Hand-To-Hand phase to try to 
  escape, no matter what other action it may be taking that round (though it will also suffer 
  the -4 penalty to WR if it's doing something other than Wrestling).

Optional Rules for Wrestling

3. Opponents with Multiple Attacks: I would allow each pinner to negate TWO attacks instead of 
just one; a pinner would usually disable both of his opponent's arms, for example. If a pinned 
opponent still has some multiple attacks available, rather than using those attacks it could 
instead try to Wrestle with a -3 penalty to WR (as stated above under "Wrestling Effects").

Page 113, Effects of Being Restrained:

   Many effects in the game might cause some kind of entanglement/entrapment, but there are 
never any standard rules to apply to characters in such conditions. 

   While a better place for this information might be the Special Character Conditions section 
on p.150, I'm putting it here since the effects of Wrestling are described here, and they are 
a good base to start with. 
   To come up with these numbers I looked at similar conditions, such as being Prone, Stunned, 
or Paralyzed -- conditions which indicate a loss of mobility. Also, several monsters in the 
Creature Catalog have attack forms which bind or hold a character, and they all pretty much 
give the same standard -4 penalty to the victim's attack roll, so that's a good number to work 
   So, the following effects can be applied when such situations come up and no other specific 
penalties are stated. These extra modifiers should also be applied to creatures who are being 
Wrestled, in addition to the effects already listed.
   If someone is partially entangled, or grabbed by a wrestler, in addition to the other 
effects stated for being grabbed, he receives a -2 penalty to all Attack Rolls and Saving 
Throws, and opponents gain a +2 bonus to hit him. Weapon Mastery suffers a penalty of -1 level 
(but reducing it no lower than Basic). If movement is even possible, it will be at 1/3 the 
normal rate.
   If someone is fully entangled (by a Web spell for example), taken down by a wrestler, or 
held in some form of binding attack by a monster (such as a continuous tentacle or hug 
attack), in addition to the other effects stated for being taken down, he receives a -4 
penalty to all Attack Rolls and Saving Throws, and opponents gain a +4 bonus to hit him. 
Weapon Mastery suffers a penalty of -2 levels (but reducing it no lower than Basic). Any 
movement will likely be impossible, which will also negate the character's Dexterity 
adjustment to AC (for better or worse).
   If someone is completely bound/tied up, or pinned by a wrestler, he will basically suffer 
penalties as if he were if Paralyzed. Page 150 describes the effects of Paralysis. Note that 
monsters with multiple attacks might still be able to use some of those attacks when pinned 
(see optional rule 3 on p.114), in which case, apply the above penalties for being 'taken 
down' to those attacks.
   Some of the effects for Wrestling may not apply to all forms of entanglement. For example, 
if a character is not actively being entangled/grappled by some creature, and he can manage to 
get one hand free, he would be able to cast spells and activate magical items; but when there 
is some creature actively grappling with or binding a character, that prevents the needed 

Page 115a, Naval Combat:

   The last paragraph under Naval Combat says that "attacks inflict 1 point of hull damage for 
every 5 points of normal damage." This should be changed to "1 point of hull damage for every 
2 points of normal damage." The 1 point per 5 was just the simple rule from the Expert 
Rulebook, which was used before more detailed rules were given in the Master's set. It should 
now be changed to be in line with the more-developed rules which are found under Siege Combat 
on pages 115-116 of the Rules Cyclopedia. Ships are not as strong as stone (which takes 1/5 
damage), and should be treated as wooden structures, taking 1/2 damage. You can also apply all 
the specific rules for special attacks that are listed in the Siege Combat section.

   Also, the roll for ramming damage by a small galley against a ship should be 1d4+4 x 10.

Page 115b, Structural Damage:

   The Cyclopedia left out some important information about creature attacks.

Master Player's Book, p.26:

Creature Attacks
   Any creature may attack a wooden target, but wooden structures take only half damage from 
any physical attack. If the creature can eat wood, full damage is inflicted.
   Only creatures equal to or larger than an Ogre may inflict damage on stone constructions 
through physical attack. Stone constructions take only 1 point of damage for every 5 points 
inflicted, rounding up. If the creature can burrow through stone, full damage is caused. Any 
creature who cannot burrow through stone and is not using a weapon, takes 1-6 points of damage 
each time it attacks.
   Missile attacks are effective only against wooden and stone structures when fired by a 
siege weapon or thrown by an ogre-sized or larger creature.

   The very last paragraph on page 115 about Structural Damage should probably be ignored; it 
could cause confusion because it seems to indicate that damage ranges for some attacks are 
listed by how much structural damage they inflict, but as the first paragraph under the bold 
topic "Structural Damage" states, all listed damage ranges (including for siege weapons) are 
for attacks against creatures; to do damage against structures, the damage is reduced 
according to the same formulas above (and on page 116 in the Special Attacks Checklist).

... Ok! We've made it out of the Combat Section!

Page 125, Clerics and the Create Food Spell Table:

   Despite what was written in a Sage advice column from Dragon Magazine (issue #187, page 41) 
which I had cited in previous versions of this document, the Create Food Table on this page in 
the Cyclopedia is completely correct.
   Confusion arises because of the wording of the Create Food spell (see the entry for page 37 
for clarification).

Page 129, Maximum Rate of Experience Gain, Paths to Immortality:

Maximum Rate of Experience Gain

   Frank Mentzer has offered some great comments on this situation:

   "It produces the Bofanork Paradox [sometimes referred to as Bofanorc Syndrome]: You have to 
go do some adventuring to be allowed to train to the next level, so the simplest method is to 
go boff an orc. 
   "Ah, but what makes Bofanork a Paradox? This: when you need a one-orc encounter to level 
up, the DM always decides to stick to big, complex, epic stuff. You can't find a low-level 
one-shot encounter of any sort. It's almost as if the DM knew you only needed 1 XP... 
   "In this special situation I'd recommend that the DM permit the PC to acquire normal XP for 
such an expedition, and then return and train for the next level... etc. etc. until the level 
and XP match up once again."

   So in special situations where a PC acquires enough XP to gain 2 levels or more, you can 
optionally allow to him to keep all of that XP (rather than stopping him 1 XP short of the 
next level) as long as you strictly enforce the rule that a character can only gain 1 level 
per adventure.

Paths to Immortality

   Although the second paragraph states that you can attempt to gain immortality after 
reaching level 26 or greater, this section was copied from the Player's Companion, p.2, and is 
incorrect by the later revisions in the Master's set (the Companion set only ran characters up 
to level 25). You can find the revised rules in the Rules Cyclopedia, p.222, where it states 
that characters much reach level 30 to be a candidate for immortality.

Page 130, Creating High-Level Characters:

Step 2: Generate Ability Scores

   The Second Method given here (60+5d6 points to assign as desired) does not generate the 
suggested range of 60-90 points, and will give an average total which is slightly higher than 
the expected average for that range. Since this is already a very liberal method of generating 
powerful characters, I recommend using 54+6d6 instead, which will produce the proper range and 
average. I'd also suggest that this method should only be used for very high-level characters, 
such as level 15 or higher.
   The First Method is more conservative, and probably better for generating characters of 
lower levels, such as levels 3-8.
   Here is a more moderate method for generating characters around levels 9-14: Roll up a 
character by the normal method (generating stats by rolls of 3d6 in order), then make one more 
roll of 3d6 to get a number of additional points the player can add to whichever stat(s) he 

Step 6: Find Total Hit Points

   The boxed text says that an Elf gains +1 HP at level 10, but he should actually gain +2 HP 
(see the entry for page 25).

Step 8: Find Magical Equipment

   I've developed the system here a bit more so that rare, powerful items are going to have a 
higher price....

   In step A, you get the item's base price, which is basically the low number on the Weapon 
Item Prices Table on the next page. Then adjust the base price according to the item's rarity 
(as indicated by how difficult it normally is to roll the item as treasure):

   Check each step that would be needed to randomly roll up that item.

For each step where a 2% chance is needed to roll the item, double the base price.
For each step where a 1% chance is needed to roll the item, triple the base price.

   Here's an example. Say you wanted a Ring of Protection +2 for the High-Level character you 
were creating. Looking at the table for rings on p.229, you see that it only takes a roll of 
46-48 on the d100 to get that item, so it's not considered rare. The base price from the table 
on p.131 for a ring is 10,000. So the total cost after adding the base price for each plus, 
would be:

10,000 + (10,000 x 2) = 30,000

   But if you want a Ring of Protection +3, that requires a roll of 49-50 on the Rings 
Table.... That's only a 2% chance, so the item is rare, and you have to double the base price. 
The cost would be:

20,000 + (20,000 x 3) = 80,000

   There is only a 1% chance of rolling a Ring of Protection +4, so the base price is tripled, 
making the cost:

30,000 + (30,000 x 4) = 150,000

   The multiplications to the base price are cumulative for each step along the way too... If 
you wanted to get a two-handed sword +5 with Slicing: you have a 1% chance of rolling the +5, 
and a 2% chance to roll Slicing on the talent table, so the base price alone would be (5,000 x 
3 x 2) = 30,000.

Also, in step C, for permanent items that produce spell effects, if the effect is usable:

Once per round, add base price x 5 to the cost.
Once per turn, add base price x 4 to the cost.
Three times per day, add base price x 3 to the cost.
Once per day, add base price x 2 to the cost.
Less than once a day, add base price x 1 to the cost.

Page 131, Spell Books:

    Note that the last paragraph under this topic indicates that when using scrolls, Elves 
have a 10% chance of failure if the spell is of a level the character is not capable of 
memorizing. The Master DM's Book, p.5, contains a further statement in regard to this, saying, 
"The same rule should apply to Magic-Users."

Page 132, Retainers:

Hiring Retainers

   For step 4, the Basic Dungeon Masters Rulebook has additional information:

   "When the rate of pay is offered and the job described, you should roll 2d6 to see if the 
retainer accepts the job. You may adjust the roll by +1 for good pay, or by -1 for a poor 
offer. Charisma adjustments should also apply."
   "If the characters are too poor to afford the proper pay of a retainer, you may allow the 
retainer to accept a half-share of treasure found. With such an offer, add 3 to the die roll."

   In step 5, the so-called "hiring bonus" seems to be an invention of the Rules Cyclopedia. 
The Basic Players Manual, page 62, makes it clear that the characters have to buy and provide 
the equipment the retainers will need, but has no indication that this equipment becomes the 
property of the retainer. I would consider it part of the negotiations for the retainer's 
wages as to whether or not he gets to keep the equipment.

Retainers and Experience

   In previous editions, NPC Retainers only got 1/2 a share, not a full share, of the XP 
awarded for an adventure (Basic Dungeons Masters Rulebook p.12, and Basic Players Manual 
p.62). But the 1991 D&D Game Rulebook p.19, like the Rules Cyclopedia, indicates that 
Retainers get a full share. I would probably recommend following the previous editions, and 
give Retainers 1/2 a share, since the game focuses on the PC's and their actions and 
decisions; Retainers are only there as supporting cast.
   If the PC's, though, are being aided by a major NPC character who is playing a large part 
in the adventure, the NPC might receive a full share of the XP. However, on page 140, at the 
top of the third column, it says, "Note that the experience points earned by NPC's are always 
half the amount given to PC's, whether from adventures, rulership, or other activities." So if 
the NPC takes a full share, he might still only gain half that amount for himself.
   Also see the entry for page 262 for a short overview of dividing XP.

Page 140, Dominion Income:

   The example given in the middle of the page is wrong, because it basically has each family 
working as BOTH miners AND animal herders at the same time. Each family can only work one 
resource at a time, and each resource in an area must be worked by at least 20% of the 
families there.

   Also, there is one additional note found in the Master DM's Book, page 6, "Adventuring 
Rulers: A PC does not gain full XP from rulership during any month in which the PC goes out on 
an adventure. The XP earned is a percentage equal to the amount of time spent on rulership and 

Page 143, Magical Aging, Anti-Magic Effects:
(see the entry for page 155 for notes regarding Anti-Magic)

   The rules for magical aging attacks, such as from a Haunt or Staff of Withering, are not 
very good and are a bit vague (e.g., just stating that Elves may ignore the first 200 years of 
aging, but after that, they are apparently affected as if they were humans...). I've put 
together some more-detailed rules, based on the Haunt's aging attack.

   A magical aging attack will age the victim in 10 year increments (typically 10 years, but 
the powerful Haunt's attack can cause aging of up to 40 years in one hit!). Points of 
Constitution will also be lost based on the lifespan of the race (it works out to be 1 point 
of Constitution for each 10% of the typical total lifespan aged).
   Halflings live twice as long as humans, Dwarves live four times as long, and Elves live 
eight times as long. So 1 point of Constitution will be lost:

Every 10 years of aging for Humans.
Every 20 years of aging for Halflings.
Every 40 years of aging for Dwarves.
Every 80 years of aging for Elves.

   As you can see, magical aging is quite lethal to humans, but much less so to Elves.

   If a victim's Constitution drops to 0, the victim dies permanently, and cannot be raised 
(and will probably crumble into a pile of dust!).
   A potion of Longevity or a Wish can be used to remove 10 years of magical aging for each 
application, and will restore the lost points of Constitution at the appropriate times. For 
example, say an Elf was aged 90 years from fighting a Haunt. He takes a Potion of Longevity to 
remove 10 years of aging, meaning he now has 80 years of magical aging... meaning he's still 
suffering the loss of a point of Constitution. If he takes another Potion of Longevity, 
leaving him with only 70 years of magical aging, he then restores the lost point of 
Constitution. He'll still be carrying around the 70 years of magical aging though (If you're 
keeping track of a character's age, be sure to note magical aging separately, since it causes 
the loss of Constitution, but can be restored).
   For some more options to remove magical aging, see the entry for Page 39 about the Restore 
spell, and the entry for page 237 about the Staff of Withering.

Page 144, Arguments and Complaints:

The first sentence should read, "Shut up! I'M the Dungeon Master!"

Page 144-145, Charm Person:

   Charm Person won't affect any creature with 6 or more Hit Dice (Basic DM's Rulebook, p.14). 
However, I believe this is only meant to apply toward humanoid monsters, not humans or demi-
humans. So a PC can be affected by this spell regardless of his level.

Page 145a, Climbing & Falling:


   Based on the sketchy suggestions for climbing given here, I put together a quick system 
that adjusts the chance of success based mainly on Encumbrance rather than merely the type of 
armor worn.
   While Encumbrance is the main consideration, the Chance of Success in my table is listed 
according to the character's Normal Movement Speed, which is, of course, limited by 
Encumbrance, but can also be affected by other factors that would also affect the ability to 
   Remember that this applies only to common situations of climbing (such as climbing a tree, 
steep hill, or a rope), and is not the equal of the Thief's Skill at climbing sheer surfaces.


  Climbing Table

 Normal  Chance of 
 Speed    Success  
  120'      17     
   90'      14     
   60'      11     
   30'       8     
   15'       5     

A character's Strength AND Dexterity adjustments are applied to the Chance of Success. The DM 
can also apply other modifiers for the situation, such as penalties if the surface is wet, or 
bonuses from the use of knotted climbing ropes, etc.
The modified number or less must be rolled on a d20. Failure could indicate a fall, or simply 
that no progress is made from the start.

Climbing speed is equal to Normal Speed divided by 5, and can be read as feet per round if 
indoors, or yards per round outdoors in ideal circumstances.

A Thief, if it gives him a better chance of success, can always choose to use his Climb Walls 
ability instead of climbing normally, but his climbing speed outdoors will likely be much 
slower when doing so (20' per round at most -- see entry for pages 21-22).


   Here are some more thorough rules for falling damage. I've included a table which covers 

   For falls under 10', the progression is determined by noting that page 22 says, in regard 
to Thieves, "Falling during a 10' climb will inflict 1 point of damage." Remember that a Thief 
always slips at the half-way point of a climb, so this actually indicates a fall from 5'.
   For falls from great heights, I used Creature Crucible PC2, Top Ballista, where they note 
that the standard rule of thumb (1d6 per 10' of fall) works well at short distances and for 
pit falls, etc., but that something different is needed to handle falls from extreme heights. 
The PC2 table has mistakes in its calculations for distance fallen based on acceleration, 
Working with some corrected values, the full table looks like this:

 Distance                Damage  
  Fallen    Time Taken   Taken   Optional
     5'     < 1 second     1        -
     6'     < 1 second    1-2       -
     7'     < 1 second    1-3       -
     8'     < 1 second    1-4       -
     9'     < 1 second    1-5       -
    10'     < 1 second    1d6       -
    15'      1 second   1d6+1d3     - 
    20'     < 2 seconds   2d6       -
    30'     < 2 seconds   3d6       -
    40'     < 2 seconds   4d6       -
    50'     < 2 seconds   5d6       -
    60'      2 seconds    6d6       -
    70'     < 3 seconds   7d6       -
    80'     < 3 seconds   8d6       -
    90'     < 3 seconds   9d6       -
   100'     < 3 seconds  10d6       -
   110'     < 3 seconds  11d6       -
   120'     < 3 seconds  12d6       -
   130'     < 3 seconds  13d6       -
   140'      3 seconds   13d6       -
 150'-240'   4 seconds   14d6       -
 250'-360'   5 seconds   15d6       -
 370'-500'   6 seconds   16d6 Save vs. Death
 510'-650'   7 seconds   17d6    Save -1
 660'-800'   8 seconds   18d6    Save -2
 810'-970'   9 seconds   19d6    Save -3
 980'-1140' 10 seconds   20d6    Save -4

   After the first 10 seconds, rate of fall will be a constant 174' per second (1740 feet per 
round), but maximum fall damage stays at 20d6.

   Optional rule from PC2: Average fall damage above 980' is 70 points; some fighter-types 
with decent Constitution could survive this with a good degree of probability. For such 
extreme falls, the DM is entitled to have a PC make a Saving Throw vs. Death Ray at -4 to 
avoid being killed outright (I've created a gradual progression for the Saving Throw, building 
up to the Save at -4).

   A fall from 100' or more might give a character enough time to activate a magic item to 
save himself, if he has the item ready and its activation is by simple means, such as a 
command word.

   A fall of 360' (5 seconds) or more might give the character enough time to perform a more 
complex action before hitting the ground.

   Remember that a character's items will also have a high risk of being damaged or destroyed 
by falls from extreme heights!

Page 145b, Damage to Magical Items:

   The system the Cyclopedia presents here is a bit sketchy, so I recommend borrowing what is 
printed in the First Edition AD&D Dungeon Master's Guide, p.80, which is a much nicer and 
more-developed system which can be used for magical and non-magical items. I've simplified a 
few parts, filled in some notes, and added a modifier based on the Shield Weapon breakage 

   An item may or may not be completely destroyed if breakage is indicated. Refer to the last 
paragraph in this section in the Cyclopedia.

              Saving Throw Matrix for Magical and Non-Magical Items
                                  Cru  Nor   D        Fir  Mag  Nor   F   Lig   E
                              A    B    B    i    F    B    F    F    r    B    l
                              c    l    l    s    a    a    i    i    o    o    e
                              i    o    o    i    l    l    r    r    s    l    c
                              d    w    w    n    l    l    e    e    t    t    t
 Item Description             1    2    3    4    5    6    7    8    9   10   11
 Bone or Ivory               11   16   10   20    6   17    9    3    2    8    1
 Ceramic                      4   18   12   19   11    5    3    2    4    2    1
 Cloth                       12    6    3   20    2   20   16   13    1   18    1
 Crystal or Vial              6   19   14   20   13   10    6    3    7   15    5
 Glass                        5   20   15   20   14   11    7    4    6   17    1
 Leather or Book             10    4    2   20    1   13    6    4    3   13    1
 Liquid (a)                  15    0    0   20    0   15   14   13   12   18   15
 Metal, hard (b)              7    6    2   17    2    6    2    1    1*  11    1
 Metal, soft or Jewelry (c)  13   14    9   19    4   18   13    5    1   16    1
 Mirror (d)                  12   20   15   20   13   14    9    5    6   18    1
 Parchment or Paper          16   11    6   20    0   25   21   18    2   20    1
 Stone, small or Gem          3   17    7   18    4    7    3    2    1   14    2
 Wood or Rope, thin (e)       9   13    6   20    2   15   11    9    1   10    1
 Wood or Rope, thick (f)      8   10    3   19    1   11    7    5    1   12    1

(a) Potions, magical oils, poisons, or acids while the container remains intact.
(b) Can include most metal melee weapons and metal armor.
(c) Includes pearls of any sort.
(d) Silvered glass. Treat silver mirrors as "Metal, soft," steel mirrors as "Metal, hard."
(e) Can include wooden weapons such as bows which aren't meant for melee.
(f) Can include hardened wooden melee weapons or wooden shields.
Those items which do not exactly conform to item descriptions above can be interpolated. 

* If exposed to extreme cold then struck against a very hard surface with force, saving throw 
is at -10!

All items gain +5 on saving throws against attack forms in their own mode, i.e., a blow vs. 
shield or armor, a Fireball vs. a Ring of Fire Resistance or Wand of Fireballs.

Magical items gain +2 on all saves, and a further +1 for each plus of enchantment.

For each full 10 points of damage actually inflicted by the attack, you can apply a -1 
modifier to the Saving Throw.

Other adjustments can also apply. The Strength adjustment of a creature trying to break an 
item would be a penalty to the saving throw, while bonuses from a Ring of Protection or a 
Protection from Evil spell could also extend to the items a character is carrying, providing a 
bonus to the save.

Attack Forms

 1. Acid
 2. Blow, Crushing
 3. Blow, Normal
 4. Disintegration
 5. Fall
 6. Fireball (or breath)
 7. Fire, Magical
 8. Fire, Normal (oil)
 9. Frost, Magical
10. Lightning Bolt
11. Electrical Discharge/Current

1. Acid: This assumes a considerable volume of strong acid (black dragon or giant slug 
spittle) or immersion for a period which would affect the item.

2. Blow, Crushing: This assumes that the item is struck by a weighty falling abject or a blow 
from an ogre's or giant's weapon, for example. Another example would be a (ceramic) flask of 
oil or a (crystal or glass) vial of holy water hurled against a hard surface. A piece of cloth 
can be ripped or torn by a crushing blow.

3. Blow, Normal: This assumes an attack by a normal-strength opponent or only fairly heavy 
object which strikes the object. This also applies to a (ceramic) flask of oil or a (crystal 
or glass) vial of holy water hurled against a tough, but slightly yielding, surface.

4. Disintegration: This is the magical effect.

5. Fall: This assumes the item falls at least 5' and comes into contact with a hard (stone-
like) surface. A softer surface (wood-like) gives a +1 on the saving throw, and a fleshy-soft 
surface gives +5. Aside from any penalty for actual damage inflicted by the fall, there is an 
additional penalty of -1 for each d6 of potential fall damage (the rule of thumb is 1d6 for 
each 10' fallen, so -1 to save for each full 10' fallen -- but see the entry for page 145 
about falling from extreme heights).

6. Fireball: This is the magical Fireball, Meteor Swarm, (red) dragon breath, etc.

7. Fire, Magical: This is the magical Wall of Fire, flaming sword, Fire Elemental, etc.

8. Fire, Normal: This assumes a hot fire such as produced by a blazing wood fire, flaming oil, 
and the like. The item in question would have to be exposed to the fire for an amount of time 
sufficient to have an effect, i.e., paper or parchment for but 1 melee round, cloth for 2, 
bone or ivory for 3, etc.

9. Frost, Magical: This is the magical frost or cold such as a white dragon breathes or spells 
such as cone of cold or ice storm.

10. Lightning Bolt: This is magical attack from lightning called from the sky, blue dragon 
breath, etc.

11. Electrical Discharge/Current: The "shock" of an electric eel, magical items, traps, etc.

Page 147, Haste Spell:

   A few optional rules that make good sense:
   If a character is one speed level faster than his opponent, he gains a +1 to initiative, 
OR, if he's using a Two-Handed weapon and his opponent is not, he does not suffer the 
automatic loss of initiative. 
   If a character is two speed levels faster than his opponent, he gains a +2 to initiative, 
OR, if he's using a Two-Handed weapon and his opponent is not, he gets a +1 to initiative and 
does not suffer the automatic loss of initiative. 

   Note that a character doesn't necessarily have to be Hasted himself to gain Haste's 
benefits -- the benefits could also apply if the character is moving at normal speed against 
an opponent who is Slowed. If he is Hasted against an opponent who is Slowed, he would 
basically gain the benefits of being double Hasted.
   Expanding on the warning in the last paragraph about Haste becoming unbalancing, you can 
limit it by only allowing one Haste effect at a time (i.e., no double Hasting). I really 
recommend this to avoid abuse.
   I also recommend carefully tracking the number of rounds the character exerts himself to 
determine when he will become Exhausted (see page 88, and the entry for page 88 in this 
Document). Remember that the character will likely be exerting himself twice as fast; if he 
makes two attack routines in one round, that counts as 2 rounds of exertion for him.

Page 148, Lost Spell Books:

   The stern warning about losing a spellbook must send shivers through every Magic-User in 
the Realm... but has any player you've known ever actually lost their spellbook? Heh. Here's 
an additional paragraph from the Expert Rulebook, p.26: "A rough guideline is 1,000 gp and 1 
week of study for each spell level replaced (3rd level spell = 3,000 gp and 3 weeks). This 
should require all the character's time, leaving none for adventuring."

Page 150a, Special Character Conditions:

Exhaustion is covered page 88.

See the entry for page 113 for effects of being Restrained/Entangled/Wrestled.

   While most penalties listed in this section have cumulative effects (e.g., being Blind, 
Prone, and Stunned would inflict a combined penalty of -12 to Saving Throws), the penalties 
for being Paralyzed, Prone, or Entangled will not combine with each other, as they are all 
indicative of various levels of being unable to move. Only use the harshest applicable 
penalties if more than one of these conditions apply. This will still be cumulative with other 
penalties from this section though, such as from being Stunned or Blind.


   I suggest Weapon Mastery above Basic is reduced to Basic.

Invisible Opponents

   I suggest Weapon Mastery above Basic is reduced to Basic when fighting an invisible 
opponent, but remember that for most invisibility effects, as soon as the invisible opponent 
makes an attack he loses his invisibility, meaning the normal Weapon Mastery defense bonuses 
could immediately apply (though it's likely the attack would come from behind, so that's 
   Also, there's an error in the first sentence; it should be a -4 penalty to hit an invisible 
opponent, not -6. This is assuming you have some way of determining where the invisible 
opponent even is, so that you can make an attack on it (e.g., because it is making a lot of 
noise, or you are receiving instructions from someone who can detect invisible things, or 
because the invisible creature just attacked you... which would give a pretty good indication 
that it is right beside you).


   I recommend a -6 penalty to Saving Throws (because it's worse than being Prone).
   When being attacked by missiles, a Paralyzed character could still get magical bonuses to 
his Armor Class (but no Dexterity bonuses).
   If it works out better for the attacker, rather than using a base AC of 9, just use the 
victim's standard AC and give the attacker a +4 to hit for having a stationary target (based 
on a rule from the 1979 Holmes-edited rulebook, page 19), because a Paralyzed creature whose 
AC was already 9 should be even easier to hit.


   I recommend a -1 level of Weapon Mastery penalty (reducing it no lower than Basic).
   I would also suggest that the penalties for being Prone are mainly meant to apply toward 
Melee attacks; a Prone creature would likely be HARDER to hit with Missile Fire, depending on 
the range involved. The Prone creature could potentially receive a Cover modifier against the 
attack rather than giving the opponent a bonus to hit. A character might even be Prone behind 
some cover, and still be able to fire his own missile device at no penalty.

Sleep and Unconsciousness

   I'd apply a -12 penalty to any Saving Throws (basically, it's the same as being Prone, 
Blind, AND Stunned), but this is not cumulative with any of the other penalties in this 
   The same rules for ranged attacks apply as for Paralysis.
   Note that the rules here are meant to apply toward characters and other Medium or Small 
creatures. But a dragon, for example, cannot be killed instantly when it's asleep; the only 
bonus gained against a sleeping dragon is +2 to hit (which I assume is the same bonus gained 
by attacking from behind). This should apply to other giant-sized monsters as well -- probably 
to any creatures larger than an Ogre.


   Note that Stuns resulting from Weapon Mastery effects only cause 2 point penalties to Armor 
Class and Saving Throws (see page 81), rather than the 4 point penalties given here, which are 
used for all other types of Stuns (from magical effects or monster attacks, for example).

Starvation Table

   The last line in the Starvation Table at the bottom of the page (the 75%-99% line) should 
have a Movement Rate of 1/4, not 3/4. I would also apply a cumulative -1 level of Weapon 
Mastery penalty for each step down the chart past the first (i.e., 0%-24% = -0; 25%-49% = -1;  
50%-74% = -2; 75%-99% = -3), but reducing Mastery no lower than Basic.

Page 150b, Options - Changing Form, Natural Healing, Zero Hit Points:

Changing Form and Magical Effects 

   When a creature changes form as a result of various magical effects (e.g., Polymorph, 
Petrification, Statue spell, Elemental or Gaseous form, etc.), spell effects with durations 
will continue to function as long as the new form is a valid target for the spell. For 
example, if a character who is under the effects of a Charm Person spell is Polymorphed into a 
non-humanoid creature, the Charm spell would end, since it only effects humanoids. If he were 
under the effects of a Haste or Fly spell, those effect would not end when he changed form.

   Magical equipment that becomes part of the new form might also continue to function, as 
long as the effect is produced automatically or was previously activated, and the equipment 
was functioning when the creature changed form. Magical bonuses from armor or a Ring of 
Protection which becomes part of the new form would continue to apply, since they function 
automatically, but bonuses from a magical Shield would not apply, since a Shield does not 
function automatically and must be properly wielded.
   Once the creature changes form, a magic item that becomes part of the new form cannot be 
activated. However, if the item was previously activated it might continue to function for its 
normal duration. For example, if a character is using Boots of Levitation when his form 
changes, the levitation effect will continue to function for the usual duration (i.e., for as 
long as the character concentrates on levitating), but once the duration ends, the item cannot 
be activated again until returned to its normal form.
   Usually, any magical transformation will end upon the death of the transformed creature, 
whereupon the creature (and its equipment) will return to its natural form.

Natural Healing

   Most of the following rules for healing and dying are adapted from the 1E AD&D DMG, p.82, 
but I simplified the healing rules and blended in some ideas about dying based on the "Keeping 
Characters Alive" and "Nonlethal Combat" optional rules from the Rules Cyclopedia (p.266-277). 

   Complete bed rest (doing nothing but lying in bed) will heal 1-4 Hit Points per day (this 
is from the 1991 D&D Game Rulebook, p.28). This is generally used when the character is 
severely wounded, and being cared for at a hospital or similar place.
   The more typical form of resting can include any non-strenuous, day-to-day activities, such 
as going to town, buying things, hanging out in the tavern, studying at the library, etc. Any 
combat, spell using, or similar activity does not constitute rest, so no hit points can be 
regained. For each day of normal rest, a character will regain 1 hit point. 
   Whichever form of rest is being used, the rate of recovery is adjusted according to the 
character's Constitution score:

     Constitution Adjustment to 
    Hit Points Recovered from Rest

   3    -1 HP the first day of every 3
  4-5   -1 HP the first day of every 4
  6-8   -1 HP the first day of every 7
  9-12      No Adjustment
 13-15  +1 HP every 6th day of rest
 16-17  +1 HP every 3rd day of rest
   18   +1 HP every 2nd day of rest

   So a character with a penalty for poor Constitution will recover no Hit Point for the first 
day of normal rest, and characters with a Consitution bonus will recover additional Hit Points 
after continuous days of rest.
   Regardless of the number of Hit Points, 4 weeks of continuous rest will restore any 
character to full health.

Zero Hit Points

   When any creature is brought to exactly 0 hit points, it is unconscious but not dying. It 
will stay at 0 hit points for 2d6 turns (unless healing is administered sooner), then wake up 
with 1 hit point. A blunt attack will not reduce someone below 0 hit points unless the damage 
from the blow reduces them to -4 or lower (this only applies to conscious opponents; once they 
are already at 0, any further damage is going to send them into negative Hit Points). Note 
that any non-blunt weapon can hit as blunt (with the pommel or the flat of the blade) by 
taking a -3 penalty to hit, in case the wielder would rather knock the opponent out rather 
than strike lethally.

   When any creature is brought below 0 hit points, it is unconscious and dying. In each of 
the next succeeding rounds, 1 additional (negative) point will be lost until -10 is reached 
and the creature dies (optionally, for creatures/players whose Constitution score is known, 
you can use negative Constitution score as the point of death, e.g., -15 for a character with 
a 15 Constitution). Such loss and death are caused from bleeding, shock, convulsions, non-
respiration, and similar causes. It ceases immediately on any round a friendly creature 
administers aid to the unconscious one. Aid consists of binding wounds, starting respiration, 
administering a draught (spirits, healing potion, etc.), or otherwise doing whatever is 
necessary to restore life. 
   At this point, the character is stabilized, but still at risk of dying. Taking any more 
damage will again cause him to start losing a Hit Point each round, though he can be 
stabilized again by administering aid as above. If the character is not healed to 0 or more 
Hit Points, he will have to make a Saving Throw vs. Death Ray after every game Turn (10 
minutes), with any failure meaning he starts to slip again, losing 1 more Hit Point every 
round until dead. Only actual healing will help after this point, not just binding the wounds 
or starting respiration, and the character cannot be stabilized again unless he is healed up 
to 0 or more Hit Points. A Healing Skill check at a -5 penalty can restore a dying character 
to 0 hit points (unconscious, but not dying).
   Any character brought to less than 0 hit points and then revived will remain in a coma for 
at least 1-6 turns. Thereafter, he or she must rest for a full week, minimum. He or she will 
be incapable of any activity other than that necessary to move slowly (half speed) to a place 
of rest, and eat and sleep when there. The character cannot attack, defend, cast spells, use 
magic devices, carry burdens, run, study, research, or do anything else. This is true even if 
cure spells and/or healing potions are given to him or her, although if a Cureall spell is 
bestowed the prohibition no longer applies.

   If any creature reaches a state of -6 or greater negative points before being revived, this 
could indicate scarring or the loss of some member, if you so choose. Far example, a character 
struck by a fireball and then treated when at -9 might have horrible scar tissue on exposed 
areas of flesh -- hands, arms, neck, face.

   Note that these rules only apply to dying as a result of sustaining damage, not from 
effects that cause instant death. In those cases (and effects that previously caused Hit 
Points to drop instantly to 0), Hit Points should instead be dropped to -10 (or -Constitution 
score), unless the DM is being really nice, in which case those Death effects can reduce the 
character to -1, and then let him die slowly over the course of 10 rounds (or his Constitution 
score in rounds). In that case, dying from effects such as poison can not be stopped by 
standard healing (though you might allow healing magic to still restore Hit Points, and thus 
keep the character alive a bit longer, but he'll still be losing 1 HP each round until dead or 
until the poison is neutralized), but conveniently, the Neutralize Poison spell says it can 
revive someone who died by poison if cast on them within 10 rounds of the poisoning (or 
optionally, for this system, their Constitution score in rounds), so that works out 
perfectly.... Just remember that neutralizing poison will also restore the character's Hit 
Points to the amount he had before being poisoned, and he won't suffer the same debilitating 
effects as someone who was reduced below 0 Hit Points as a result of sustaining damage.
   Oh yeah, remember to apply these rules to monsters as well (handily, a non-humanoid 
monster's Constitution score is twice it's Hit Dice, as noted in the Striking Checklist on 
page 111). But hey, killing off the unconscious wounded is half the fun, right? Speaking of 
killing the unconscious... the current rule says that anyone can kill a sleeping/unconscious 
character with one melee attack from an edged weapon. To fit with these new rules, change it 
so that a melee attack from an edged weapon against an unconscious character will instantly 
reduce him to 0 Hit Points (if he's not already there or lower), and then do maximum damage 
for the weapon (that should be plenty deadly). Further edged melee attacks also do maximum 
   Note that this this shouldn't apply to giant-sized creatures larger than an Ogre -- see the 
note about killing Sleeping characters in the entry for page 150a.

Page 151, Omitted Information - Infravision, Poison, Traps:

   Here is some good information that was not included in the Cyclopedia.


   Basic DM's Rulebook, page 22:

   Many non-human monsters have infravision, in addition to normal sight. Infravision is the 
ability to see 60' in the dark by seeing heat (and the lack of it). Normal and magical light 
makes infravision useless. Fire and other heat sources interfere with infravision, much as a 
bright flash can interfere with normal vision for a short time.
   To infravision, warm things seem red, and cold things seem blue. For example, a party of 
characters hiding in darkness could be seen as group of reddish shapes. Some bodies would seem 
a faint pink (armor), while others -- an unarmored magic-user, for example -- would be a 
brighter red. A cold pool of water would seem a deep blue color. Even an item or creature the 
same temperature as the surrounding air (such as a table or skeleton) can be dimly seen with 
   Note that a character (such as a thief or halfling) in complete darkness cannot hide from a 
monster with infravision. Some light source must be nearby to interfere with the monster's 
infravision, while casting shadows in which the character could hide.

   There are some additional monsters listed in the Cyclopedia that should be assumed to have 
infravision even though it's not stated in their description. Such creatures generally live 
primarily underground or are noctournal, or were listed in AD&D as having infravision.

   I recommend the following creatures should be assumed to have infravision: Beholder, 
Dragon, Hobgoblin, Orc, Revener, Shadow, Thoul, Troglodyte, Troll.
   Dopplegangers could gain infravision by assuming the form of any creature that naturally 
has the ability!

   All lowlife, animals, and animal-like creatures will generally have superior senses that 
allow them to navigate fine in darkness or near-darkness, even without infravision. For such 
creatures that normally rely mainly on sight, their other sharp senses could give them a +3 To 
hit when they are in complete darkness or can't see the opponent (basically, treat them as if 
they have the Blind Shooting skill -- see entry for page 83-85; this will only partially 
offset the usual large penalties suffered for those situations).

   Constructs and Undead of all sorts should probably be assumed to be able to "see" in 
darkness (even magical darkness) as well as living creatures can see in light. Though it isn't 
actually infravision, a nearby light source will interfere with this ability as well, and 
these creatures can still be "blinded" by magical means.


   DM's Companion Book, p.22:
   Poison is a dangerous tool. If characters are permitted to use poison, monsters should be 
able to do the same. And there are far more monsters than characters...
   A potion is the most common form of poison. Its effects when used on blowgun darts are 
recommended as the maximum for use on any weapon.
   You may wish to make poisons of lesser power available, lacking the strength to kill, but 
able to paralyze, intoxicate, sleep, and/or inflict slight damage.
   Many natural plants are mildly poisonous, and saps or boiled leaves could yield poisons 
usable on weapons. However, poison preparation is not common knowledge, and the chance of 
error is high (including the accidental poisoning of the maker).
   The use of poison is evil, and may cause alignment problems. Local and regional laws may 
punish poisoners.


   The following is from the Basic Players Manual, p.57, (and it's a shame the Cyclopedia left 
this out, as it's both informative and colorful):

   Dungeons often contain traps. Old ruins usually have more traps than caves. The most common 
trap is a hidden trap door, which falls open as a character walks on it, dumping the character 
into a pit. There could be something in the pit -- spikes, deep water, or a monster. Beware!
   Many other traps are possible. A chest or treasure may be covered in poison; deadly if 
touched, but easily removed by rinsing in water. Some poisons are sticky, and can only be 
removed with wine. A blade trap can be found nearly anywhere, and usually inflicts enough 
damage to kill a 1st or 2nd level character.
   Doors may be trapped on the handles, locks, or surface. Small darts may be found inside a 
lock, and may be poisoned for many different effects (paralysis, damage, death, etc.).
   If you wish to search for a trap, tell the DM where you are searching, and the DM will roll 
to see if you find anything. You might have NO chance to find a small trap, such as the type 
on a door or treasure. Thieves have a percentage chance at detecting any type of trap. Dwarves 
have better chances at finding large traps (such as pits) than other characters.
   It takes 10 minutes (1 turn) to search for a trap in a small area, such as a 20' square 
room or a 20' long section of corridor. If less time is spent, no trap will be found.

   The important thing to note is that any character can search for traps. The types of traps 
that could be detectable by non-Thieves might include pit traps, trip wires, swinging blades, 
and other large traps. The chance of success is 1 in 6 -- the same as for detecting secret 
doors. When the trap involves large dungeon features, Dwarves have a 2 in 6 chance to detect 
   If it is one of these larger types of traps that other characters have a chance to detect, 
a 1st or 2nd level Thief should get the same chance as a standard character (1 in 6) rather 
than his Detect Traps percentage, because at 1st or 2nd level his chances are less than 1 in 
6. If it's a small trap that other characters can't detect, then he should use his usual 
percentage. Once he reaches 3rd level though, his detection ability with all kinds of traps 
will be better than 1 in 6.

Page 152, Monster Size:

   The addition of a Size category for monsters was something new in the Rules Cyclopedia. 
This makes it easy to determine which monsters to apply a Halfling's -2 AC bonus against, for 
example. However, I think some of the monsters were listed with an incorrect Size (these will 
be noted throughout the next sections). The Descriptions of the Size categories are also quite 
vague, so I adapted the Size classifications from 2E AD&D (with some slightly altered names):


      Size Categories
 Tiny     smaller than 2' 
 Small     2' to 4'
 Medium    4' to 7'
 Large     7' to 12'
 Giant    12' to 25'
 Immense  larger than 25'

   Most creatures are measured in height or length; some are measured in diameter. Also 
consider the overall bulk of the creature. For example, Dwarves are right around 4' in height, 
but are rather bulky, so are considered size Medium (roughly man-sized). 

   Note that classifying a creature as a size smaller than Small or larger than Large isn't 
going to make any difference by the standard rules, but I use those categories for Missile 
Fire Size Adjustments (entry for page 108) and the Shove Maneuver (entry for page 104). 

Page 153, Monster Type - Enchanted:

   Remember not to confuse Enchanted creatures with Weapon-Immune creatures; not all Enchanted 
creatures have Weapon Immunity, and not all Weapon-Immune creatures are Enchanted. Creatures 
with varying types of Immunities are marked with a '*' by their name. If a creature is 
Enchanted, it will say so within the Monster Type.
   The confusion can arise because some creatures are classified as Enchanted BECAUSE they 
have powerful Weapon Immunity.

The 1991 D&D Game Rullebook, p.64, states it fairly clearly:

   Enchanted: Any creature that is magically summoned, animated, or controlled (as with a 
charm spell) or one that can only be hit by a magical weapon. Creatures that can be hit by 
silver weapons are not enchanted.

   I would also add that creatures which can be harmed by normal fire do not possess Immunity 
strong enough to classify as Enchanted.

Page 154, Monster Special Attacks & Defenses:

Breath Weapons

   See the information about Breath Weapons in the entry for pages 168-171 about dragons. That 
information could apply to several other creatures that have Breath Weapons which function in 
the same manner.


   A few extra words need to be added to this description to make it clear:

   If a monster with this special attack can run toward its opponent for 20 yards (20 feet 
indoors) in one round, it inflicts double damage if it hits. 


   This effect does not actually work the same as the spell of the same name. From the Basic 
DM's Rulebook, p.23, "Charm: Some monsters can enchant a character so that the character is 
confused, believing that the monster is a friend. If the character is the victim of a Charm 
attack (from a Harpy, for example) and fails a Saving Throw vs. Spells, the character is 
immediately Charmed. A Charmed character is confused and unable to make decisions. The Charmed 
character will not attack or harm the Charming monster in any way, and will obey simple 
commands from the creature if they both understand a language (whether the alignment tongue or 
some other language). If the Charmed character does not understand the monster's speech, the 
character will still try to protect the monster from harm. Charmed characters are too confused 
to use any spells or magic items which require concentration. If the Charming monster is 
killed, the Charm effect disappears." A Dispel Magic spell can be used to break the Charm 
without killing the monster. Failing that, use the Duration of Charm table on page 145.

Energy Drain

   The rules are rather vague about restoring lost levels due to Energy Drain. I recommend 
that a Restore spell will only work if applied before the character regains the XP he lost, 
and the spell will restore the exact amount of XP that was taken from him (even if that 
exceeds his previous total), rather than simply restoring "one full Level" (see the Restore 
spell, p.39). This will give the character a reasonable amount of time to seek out a Restore 
spell while he continues to gain XP normally -- he won't have to worry that the XP he's 
gaining will be wasted just to "fill in the hole," since he has time to get a Restore spell 
and regain all the XP that was removed. Once a character reaches the XP total he was at before 
getting Drained, he no longer has the option of getting a Restore for that Energy Drain.
   Players will have to keep track of each Energy Drain upon their character, including the 
exact number of XP lost, the XP total before the drain, and any resulting Weapon Mastery 
ranks, General Skills, or Hit Points that were "revoked" by losing a level. Count a double 
Energy Drain (such as from a Vampire) as two separate Energy Drains, applying one right after 
the other. When using the Restore spell, you must restore the most recent Energy Drains first. 
Each application of Restore will restore the amount of XP lost from one Energy Drain only, and 
the Cleric casting the Restore spell will suffer the temporary loss of that amount of XP, 
rather than "one full Level." This will make it rather easy for a Cleric to restore lost 
levels to low-level characters, but when restoring high-level characters, it's really going to 
drain him.
   When a character has lost Weapon Mastery ranks, General Skills, or Hit Points from being 
Drained, he will instantly get those things back as soon as he gains enough XP (either 
naturally or by the Restore spell) to support having the things he lost (e.g., he won't have 
to go through training again to regain his skills -- he only has to regain the XP that was 
required in order to get the skill in the first place).
   For better calculations as to exactly how much XP is lost (rather than always dropping a 
character to the midpoint of the previous level), for characters up to 9th level, just cut 
their XP total exactly in half. This will place them at the same relative position in their 
new level as they were in their previous level. 
   For characters above 9th level, subtract an amount of XP equal to the amount it took them 
to go from the beginning of their previous level to the beginning of their current level. This 
can apply to characters who have reached their maximum level too, providing them with a 
certain amount of "buffer" to Energy Drain attacks if they have gained a lot of XP past their 
maximum level.

   An additional note from the last paragraph: Mystics or people attacking with unarmed combat 
will still have to be careful hitting some creatures that don't have to make a conscious 
effort to make a touch attack, such as slimes or cockatrices. Just coming into contact with 
them can be hazardous.


   There isn't actually a general description of the Gaze ability anywhere; there are just 
different examples scattered around in various creature descriptions, some of which are a bit 
vague. To help avoid confusion and perhaps answer any questions that might arise, I've come up 
with this comprehensive and unified description of Gaze abilities based on all the individual 
   A creature with a "Gaze" ability might be more accurately described as having a "Magical 
Visage" that can affect opponents who look upon it. If the actual eyes or visage of a creature 
with a Gaze ability are not visible to an opponent, the Gaze cannot affect that opponent. 
Seeing the reflected visage of the creature will not be harmful. Unless noted otherwise, the 
maximum effective range for a Gaze ability is 120 feet.

   There are two main variations of the Gaze ability:

   Automatic: This type of Gaze ability functions automatically and continuously, whether the 
creature wants it to or not (this can be dangerous to the creature's allies). Anyone looking 
upon the creature's visage risks being affected by the Gaze, and any number of opponents can 
be affected simultaneously each round.
   Activated: Some creatures must make a conscious effort to activate their "Magical Visage." 
Activated Gaze abilities can be directed toward only one opponent at a time. The creature's 
visage can otherwise be looked upon with no adverse effects, and is only dangerous when the 
creature is actively focusing its Gaze ability upon the viewer.

   There is one additional property that applies to some Gaze abilities: First Sight. This 
type of Gaze will only function ONCE against each opponent during an encounter, regardless of 
whether or not the opponent's Saving Throw is successful. Any Gaze ability that is 
specifically stated as causing any form of "fear" will function in this manner.

   Usually, a creature with a Gaze ability will be immune to similar Gaze abilities of other 
creatures, and also to its own reflected Gaze, unless stated otherwise. Normally, only 
creatures of low intelligence will have a chance of accidentally seeing their own reflection 
in a mirror; intelligent creatures who are susceptible to their own reflected Gaze will be 
smart enough to avoid looking in a mirror accidentally, but might be tricked into doing so. If 
such a creature is confronted with a large-enough mirror being directed at it, the creature 
will have to take the same steps that a character normally does to avoid being affected by a 

   A character in combat against a creature with a Gaze ability has to put a much effort into 
averting his eyes in order to avoid seeing the "Magical Visage" and suffering the effects. 
Imagine that a light is shining forth from the creature's eyes, and if that light enters your 
eyes, even from the side, you will suffer the effect. So a character, to be safe from the 
Gaze, basically can't look at the creature at all, and must even be careful not to catch it in 
his peripheral vision.
   This will cause a -4 penalty to the character's Hit Rolls against that creature, and the 
creature will gain +2 bonus to hit the character. Also, the character's Weapon Mastery is 
treated as no greater than Basic level against that creature. 
   If the character uses a hand mirror to view the creature while he fights, he only suffers a 
-2 penalty to his Hit Rolls, but the area must be lit, and the character must have a free hand 
to hold the mirror. Any Weapon Mastery is penalized by -1 level, but reducing it no lower than 
Basic. The creature still gains a +2 bonus to hit the character.
   Of course, the character can choose to fight normally, but will usually have to make a 
Saving Throw against the Gaze every round.

   Gaze abilities produce magical effects, but the Gaze itself cannot be blocked by anti-magic 
barriers (e.g., Anti-Magic Shell, Scroll of Protection from Magic), unless the barrier is 
specifically designed to block Gaze attacks (e.g., the blue layer of a Prismatic Wall). 
However, if the target is standing within a field of anti-magic (e.g., a Beholder's front eye 
ray), the magical effect cannot occur, therefore any creature within an area of 100% anti-
magic cannot be affected by a Gaze. A Gaze could, however, "pass through" an anti-magic area 
and effect a victim on the other side, just as it could affect a character standing on the 
other side of a glass window.


   As a rule of thumb, a petrified character is about 2.5 times heavier than normal (from the 
D&D FAQ, p.61). Remember to multiply the weight of all equipment carried as well.

   At some point, a petrified character might come under attack. Rather than considering the 
victim to be a normal piece of stone, remember that he's still a character as stated in the 
D&D FAQ, p.54: "A petrified creature is mindless and without senses, but is still a creature. 
For all intents and purposes, a petrified creature is an immobile construct, and magical 
effects applied to it function as they would if used on any other construct." 
   Remember that even though the character is petrified, he's not dead (though a Construct is 
not considered to be "alive," it's still a creature), and is still allowed to make Saving 
Throws. I'd recommend a -4 penalty to his Saving Throws, though, since he's immobile 
   When a petrified character comes under attack, he can be treated as if he is using the 
Statue spell (p.55-56). This means he will have a base AC of -4 and will be immune to normal 
weapons and all fire and cold-based attacks (see the Statue spell for other details, and also 
the "Immunity to Normal Weapons" section below). In order for an attacker to destroy or 
dismember the "statue," he'll have to reduce the petrified character to 0 or fewer Hit Points. 
   Magic items that are petrified along with the character will become part of the petrified 
form, so they can't be separately destroyed unless the character himself is killed, as above. 
Some magical effects from those items may continue to function as part of the new form; see 
the entry for page 150b about Changing Form.
   Petrification, though a magical effect, is not supposed to be easily Dispellable. For the 
purpose of resisting Dispel Magic, treat petrification as a 36th level effect, regardless of 
the level of the caster or the HD of the creature that produced the effect. A Cleric's Cureall 
spell, however, should be able to restore a petrified character to flesh (this was suggested 
by Frank Mentzer, who also gave an informal nod of approval in regard to setting the level of 
effect at 36).
   As with a Flesh to Stone spell, I would specify that Petrification only affects living 
creatures (so undead or Constructs are not affected).


   The following table for the Swoop attack was omitted from the Cyclopedia; it can be found 
in the Expert Rulebook, page 45:


  HD of         Victim 
 Monster         Size
  3 HD    may lift a halfling
  6 HD    may lift a man
 12 HD    may lift a horse
 24 HD    may lift an elephant

   Be sure to check each monster's description though; some flying monsters can lift larger 
victims than indicated here.

Gaseous Form
   Based on the various descriptions of Gaseous Form found throughout the Rules Cyclopedia, 
and some ideas imported from the d20 System Reference Document, and helpful information from 
Frank Mentzer, here are some unified mechanics to use in any situation where a creature 
assumes Gaseous form.

   A living being who assumes Gaseous form remains a living being even while in that state. 
Similarly, an Undead being is still Undead while in Gaseous form, so may still be Turned.
   The Gaseous creature will keep control over his body and will remain approximately the same 
Size as his normal form, appearing as a cloud of smoke or mist. He cannot use items or cast 
spells, but can fly at 180' (60'), and can move through small holes in walls, chests, and so 
forth. He cannot move through liquids, as he will rapidly float to the surface.

   The Gaseous creature will gain a base AC of -2, with his Dexterity adjustment still 
applying. Protective spells and other enchantments also still apply (e.g., Protection from 
Evil, Bless, Fly -- allowing faster movement), as do some magical protections or effects from 
equipment which becomes part of the cloud (see the entry for page 150b about Changing Form).

   A Gaseous creature needs no food, water, or air, and is immune to poison for as long as he 
remains Gaseous. He cannot be harmed by nonmagical weapons. Furthermore, each blow from a 
magical weapon inflicts only the magic damage ("plusses"), ignoring normal weapon damage and 
Strength bonuses (e.g., a sword +4 would inflict 4 points of damage per hit).
   Spells will affect the Gaseous creature normally, as long as a Gaseous creature is a valid 
target for the spell (e.g., Hold Person only effects humanoids, so it could not target a 
creature in Gaseous form).

   By concentrating for one full round without interruption and without moving, a Gaseous 
creature can expand its body to a much larger size and become virtually invisible. In this 
state the creature may only move at a rate of 60' (20'), but it is immune to all weapons and 
damage-causing effects such as fire, lightning, or cold. The creature cannot be targeted by 
spells, but is still vulnerable to area effects that do not cause damage. Only creatures able 
to detect invisible will be able to discern the Gaseous creature's presence in this state. In 
order to return to a solid form, the creature will first have to spend one round to condense 
down to normal Gaseous form.

   A Dispel Magic effect can force a Gaseous creature back to its normal form, though 
creatures with the innate ability to become Gaseous can usually resume Gaseous form after 1 

Immunity to Normal Weapons

   Here the Rules Cyclopedia lacks a rule to account for monsters hitting each other despite 
weapon immunities. Can a dragon hit a werewolf despite the lack of a silver weapon? Of course 
it can.... So monsters need a system similar to the Mystic's, which will account for the 
attacking monster having innate magical properties or just enough sheer size to harm the 

   The following is similar to the system from the 1E AD&D DMG, p.75, but altered to follow 
standards from PC4 Night Howlers, which contains information regarding weapon immunity which 
is more pertinent to D&D rules.
   This applies only to monsters and not characters of any sort.


          Creatures Immune to Normal Weapons
 Attackers with   or that are hit    can hit opponents     
  Hit Dice of    only by weapons of    that require 
     -NA-              -NA-           normal weapons
  4+1 or more         silver          silver weapons    
   8 or more       +1 or better         +1 weapons
  12 or more       +2 or better         +2 weapons
  16 or more       +3 or better         +3 weapons
  20 or more       +4 or better         +4 weapons

Such attackers can hit and inflict full damage against opponents as indicated, and can also 
hit and inflict half damage against opponents of one category higher.

If the attacker is not using natural attacks (e.g., claw, bite, fist), and is instead using a 
non-magical weapon (melee or missile) the attack is treated as one category lower on the 

Example: A Manscorpion (8 HD) attacking with its tail stinger inflicts full damage against 
opponents that require a +1 weapon to hit, and half damage against opponents that require a +2 
weapon to hit. When attacking with a weapon, the Manscorpion can only inflict full damage 
against opponents that require a silver weapon to hit, and half damage against opponents that 
require a +1 weapon to hit. 

   You can also allow normal fire to do half damage against creatures that are vulnerable to 
silver weapons, unless the creature is non-corporeal. This functionality was found in earlier 
editions of D&D, but was specifically stated as applying toward undead. It could, however, be 
applied to lycanthropes and other creatures as well.

   The following option is also adapted from Night Howlers.

   Weapon-Immune creatures might, at the DM's discretion, also be affected by massive normal 
damage. For example, any attack that causes more than 15 points of damage at once, injures a 
lycanthrope. The lycanthrope's immunity to normal weapons absorbs the first 15 points of any 
single normal attack, but any damage beyond that gets through. 
   Multiple attacks in one round will also do damage. The lycanthrope sustains injuries if the 
total amount of normal damage done in a single round exceeds 30 points -- even if no single 
attack does more than 15 points. Total the damage from all normal attacks in a single round, 
then subtract 30 to find the amount of damage the lycanthrope suffers. A lycanthrope hit by 40 
arrows in one round won't escape unscathed! 

   I've scaled this system up to include other Weapon-Immune creatures, and this form of 
Damage Resistance can also apply toward damage from falling.


     Normal Damage Resistance

  Creatures     Resists   Resists 
 only hit by    per hit  per round
    Silver        15        30
 +1 or better     20        40
 +2 or better     25        50
 +3 or better     30        60
 +4 or better     35        70
 +5 or better     40        80

Page 155, Spell Immunity:

   Creatures that have magical immunity to spells of certain levels can, at will, disable 
their spell immunity so that they can receive beneficial spells, such as Cure Wounds, Haste, 
Invisibility, etc. Of course, as long as a creature has its immunity disabled, it is 
vulnerable to any detrimental spells too. As soon as the creature stops willing the immunity 
to be disabled, any magic affecting it (of levels it is immune to) will immediately be 
negated, including any beneficial magical effects with durations.
   This functionality is how Spell Immunity was intended to operate, according to Frank 
Mentzer. This also applies to radiated Anti-Magic effects, as noted in the Players' Guide to 
Immortals, page 9.

Page 157, Adaptor, Ant, Ape:


   Adaptors are noted as being "skilled at swordplay." Rather than just applying the listed +4 
to hit and damage, you can give them a Weapon Mastery rank of Skilled with a sword. This will 
decrease their bonus to hit and damage, but they will gain other abilities, like deflect, 
disarm, and AC bonuses. Adaptors with an intelligence of 16 or higher could be given a rank of 
Expert with the sword (this is based on the Mastery Limits for Weapon-Using Monsters Table on 
page 81).

Ant, Giant

   The Giant Ant has a '*' by its HD indicating a special ability, and it has an XP value that 
reflects this, but it has no special ability.... Remove the '*' and change the XP value to 75.
   You could also make two classes of Ant, using the corrected values above for a Worker Ant, 
and the values as written for a Warrior Ant. The Warrior ant will have a poison sting in 
addition to its bite (as it does in AD&D). If a Warrior Ant scores a successful attack with 
its bite, it will try to sting. Damage for the sting could be an additional 2d6, halved with a 
successful Saving Throw vs. Poison.

Ape, Snow

   The Snow Ape has a powerful continuous damage hug attack, and should have a '*' by its HD 
to reflect this. The XP value should be adjusted to 75.

Page 159, Bat, Bear:


   The stated 25' wingspan for the 2HD Giant Bat was not found in the Basic Set, and in my 
opinion it simply cannot be correct. I recommend a wingspan of 8-10 feet -- the same as the 
Small Pterosaur.  


   A Black Bear should really be size Medium; most won't be bulky enough to classify as Large.

Page 160, Beetle:

   At only 3' long, an Oil Beetle should be size Small.

Page 161, Undead Beholder:

   The ranges aren't stated for several of the Undead Beholder's eyestalk attacks. The Dispel 
Magic and Telekineses rays should have a 120' range (the same as the spells), and Frank 
Mentzer said the Energy Drain rays should have a 60' range.

Page 164, Chimera, Crocodile:


   The Chimera has two asterisks ('*') by its HD, indicating that it has two special attacks, 
and has an XP value indicating such, but only one special attack (the breath weapon) is 
mentioned in the description. The missing special attack could likely be the Charge Attack, 
which the Chimera could use in conjunction with its goat head butt (the 2d4 damage attack).

   The XP value for the Giant Crocodile should be 1,650 (check the table on page 128). The 
Master DM's Book revised the progression for XP awards based on monster HD to account for 
higher-level monsters. Many of the monsters from earlier sets needed their XP value 
recalculated to fit in with the new system. The Rules Cyclopedia fixed most of those monsters, 
but this one must have slipped through.

Page 165, Devilfish:

   Since they can be harmed by silver weapons, Devilfish shouldn't be classified as Enchanted.

Page 167, Dolphin:

    Frank Mentzer has stated that the average score for a Dolphin's Intelligence should be 11, 
not 15. Some of the most exceptional Dolphins could have a maximum of 15 Intelligence though 
(see Monster Intelligence on page 214).

Page 168-171, Dragon:

   The tables on page 168 are kind of reversed in regard to "attacks." On the ground, dragons 
are supposed to get up to 6 attacks each round. A dragon's attack options vary a lot, 
depending on if it's in air-to-air, air-to-ground, or ground-to-ground combat, and then 
depending on the position of the opponents and the Size of the dragon.... Page 170 explains 
the details of this in the section "Physical Attacks." However, as noted above, dragons on the 
ground are supposed to get up to 6 attacks each round, not merely 3 as stated in the 4th 
paragraph there. The limit of 3 attacks per round was not found in the Companion set, and if 
you look at the Dragon Rulers on page 172, you can see that they get up to 9 attacks each 
round, which is specifically spelled out in their description. There is a small error though, 
where it says, "Each Dragon Ruler can attack up to nine times per round (with two bites, two 
claws, two wings, two kicks, and two tail)." It should say, "one tail." Only the Great One 
gets to make 2 tail attacks each round, giving him a total of 10 possible attacks. 
   While I'm pointing out errors, the Dragon Rulers should be classified as Enchanted 

   Now, just because the standard dragons can potentially make up to 6 attacks per round, that 
doesn't mean they will always be able to do so; see the section "Dragon Tactics" to determine 
what attacks are available to each Dragon based on its Size and the position of the opponents. 
And it might be reasonable to say that a dragon can't make more than three attacks in a round 
against any single man-sized opponent....


   It's noted that talking Dragons can cast Magic-User spells. AC10, Bestiary of Dragons and 
Giants, adds, "The spell casting ability of dragons requires no books or scrolls to work. It 
is similar to a cleric meditating for his spells, but the dragon gains spells from sleeping."
   The Cyclopedia also notes that a Dragon's spells are usually selected randomly. Frank 
Mentzer suggests that the randomly-selected spells are basically treated as the Dragon's 
"spell book," and the Dragon may choose which of those spells will be memorized when he 
Breath Weapons

   It is a bit of an odd mechanic to have a Breath Weapon do damage equal to the dragon's 
current Hit Points, causing the Breath damage to decrease as the dragon is wounded. My main 
gripe with this mechanic is that it's a dead giveaway, telling exactly how many Hit Points the 
dragon has left, which is something the players shouldn't know. While there are some 
reasonable explanations as to why it could function this way, Frank Mentzer has said that he's 
not quite sure why this functionality was put into classic Dungeons & Dragons, since the 
founding personalities of D&D always played it so that Breath Weapons did damage equal to the 
dragon's FULL Hit Points, even if the dragon was wounded.
   So it's certainly acceptable to play it that way if you prefer. Yes, this will make dragons 
tougher, but I think that's as it should be -- they are supposed to be among the most fearsome 
opponents, because, as Frank pointed out, Dragons are fully Half the Name of the Game.
   Another option would be to randomly roll 1d8 per HD of the dragon to determine the Breath 
Weapon damage each time it is used.
Subduing Dragons

   The rules for subdual are widely considered to be rather poor in regard to the odd 
mechanics used.... It is suggested that the first paragraph just be ignored. You can still 
allow subdual (if the characters give the dragon the opportunity to surrender) based on Morale 
checks (adjusting the roll based on how badly the dragon is doing) and the fact that a dragon 
will do everything possible to save its own life. Just consider things like the Alignment of 
the dragon, and how honorably it thinks the characters acted in defeating it. The other 
information about Subdual still applies.

Final Details

   Just in case anyone wonders how large a dragon might be, you can probably say, based on the 
range of the wing attack on the previous page (3' per HD), the dragon's total wingspan would 
be 6' per Hit Die when the wings are fully outstretched. We'll assume that a dragon's wings 
are large in proportion to its body, and that the tail isn't exceedingly long, so that a 
dragon's total length from nose to tail tip will also be 6' per Hit Die. This would give a 
Small White Dragon (6HD) a total wingspan and length of 36 feet. A Huge Gold Dragon (22 HD) 
would be 132 feet long.... Keep that in mind the next time you design a dragon's lair. 
   Roughly 1/3 of that total length is going to be the dragon's head and neck, another 1/3 
will be the body itself, and the last 1/3 will be the length of the tail.

Page 173, Dragon Turtle:

   The Dragon Turtle should not have a '*' by its name; it can be hit with normal weapons.
   The damage for the bite attack is supposed to be determined by a roll of 10d6, not 1d6x10 
(verified by Frank Mentzer).
   I also recommend changing the damage for the claw attacks, since 1d8 damage seems too 
little for such a massive creature. The Dragon Turtle could be compared to the Diamond Dragon 
(both have 30 HD) on the opposite page in the Cyclopedia, with a claw attack that does 2d8+4 
damage. This is a good value to use for the Dragon Turtle's claw attacks as well.

Page 174, Dwarf:

   Dwarves are considered size Medium, or roughly man-sized.

Page 177, Elf, Gargantua:


   Elves are size Medium. Also, the XP Value for an Elf should be 13.


   Being only 2 times the height of a normal creature just does not properly convey the 
"incredible size" a Gargantua is supposed to be. As they have 8 times the Hit Dice and inflict 
4 times the damage, I recommend that a Gargantua should be 6 times the height of a normal 

Page 178, Gargoyle:

   Gargoyles should be size Medium. AD&D lists them as being up to 6' tall.

Page 179, Giant:

   Cloud Giants should Save As a Fighter of level 13 to match their HD of 13. Previous D&D 
sets had Cloud Giants at 12+3 HD. The HD was upgraded to 13 in the Mentzer Expert Rulebook; 
the Saving Throw information likewise should have been altered, but was overlooked.

Page 180, Golem:

   In addition to its weapon immunity, the Mud Golem has a continuous damage hug attack, and 
should have an additional '*' by its HD to reflect this. Adjust the XP value to 1,750.

Page 181, Gorgon, Griffon:


   The Gorgon has two special attacks (Breath Weapon and Charge Attack) but only one '*' by 
its HD, so its XP value is incorrect for having two special attacks. Other creatures with the 
Charge Attack, such as the Elephant and Triceratops, originally did not have their XP adjusted 
for it in the Expert Rulebook, but were revised in the Rules Cyclopedia to now have the 
correct values. Following those examples, you should add the extra '*' next to the Gorgon's 
HD, and change its XP value to 1,750.
   There are several other creatures which could be given the Charge Attack as well; just 
remember to adjust their HD and XP accordingly.


   The Griffon is supposed to be able to carry off a horse-sized creature at half normal 
flying rate (the Expert Rulebook further notes, "Griffons are very powerful"), but the load 
values listed here would not allow that (horses weigh more than 700 pounds). I believe the 
correct values for for the Griffon's carrying capacity are actually the ones listed on page 68 
in the barding example: up to 7,000 cn at full speed, 14,000 cn at half speed (other powerful 
flying creatures such as Dragons and Rocs use this same formula of 1,000 x HD to get their 
normal load cn).
Page 182, Hag, Halfling, Haunt:


   Since the Sea Hag can be hit by silver weapons, it shouldn't be classified as Enchanted.


   A Halfling is size Small.


   Haunts should save as Fighters of equal level (it was omitted from their description).

   The rules for the Haunt aging attack are just not very good here.... See the entry for page 
143 for some better rules to handle magical aging.

Page 184, Hellhound:

   The Unofficial Errata brings up the question about the range for a Hellhound's breath 
attack. From the 1979 Holmes-edited rulebook, p.29, "Range of the fire breath is only 5 feet, 
and is treated as a blow on the combat table..."

Page 187, Insect Swarm, Kryst:

Insect Swarm

   The Insect Swarm should not be classified as an Enchanted creature; even though it is 
immune to weapons, it can be hurt by normal fire (just like Green Slime, Ochre Jelly, etc.).

   The description here gets vague, so I borrowed and adapted some effects from the AD&D 
version of the Insect Plague spell (see entry for page 37-38):

   Heavy smoke drives off insects within its bounds. Fire may be used to damage the Insect 
Swarm or ward it away. For example, a Wall of Fire in a ring shape keeps an Insect Swarm 
outside its confines, and a Fireball spell could potentially kill the entire swarm, if enough 
damage is dealt and the swarm's full area is within the blast radius. A torch may be used to 
damage the insects, but not during the same round it's used to "swat." Lightning or non-
flaming weapons are ineffective in damaging the swarm. Cold-based attacks or strong winds that 
cover the entire swarm will cause the insects to disperse or become inactive, but 1-4 rounds 
after the effect ends, the swarm will reform.


   The Kryst should be classified as Enchanted; it is only vulnerable to magical attacks.

Page 188, Leech, Lich:

Leech, Giant

   At 3'-4' long, most Giant Leeches should be size Small.
   The Leech also has a continuous damage attack, and should have a '*' by its HD to reflect 
this. The XP value should be adjusted to 500.


   This is not mentioned in the description, but a Lich, being an undead spellcaster, may make 
a Saving Throw vs. Spells to avoid any successful Turn attempts (see page 218, next-to-last 
   The Lich's fear effect easily fits within the rules for Gaze abilities (see the entry for 
page 154 about Gaze).

Page 190-191, Lycanthrope:

   Lycanthropes should not be classified as Enchanted creatures. Read the various Protection 
from Evil spells, which clearly state, "A creature that can be hit only by a silver weapon -- 
a Werewolf, for example -- is not an Enchanted creature."

   The Wereboar was originally from the Basic Set (before the Charge Attack was introduced), 
so it should be given this special attack (the normal Boars on page 162 have it). 
   Add a '*' next to its HD, and adjust the XP value to be 275 to account for this.

Page 192, Medusa, Mek:


   The Medusa is the only creature that has an Automatic Gaze ability which can affect only 
one opponent per round... which seems a bit odd to me. You can keep it that way if you wish, 
or you can decide that a Medusa's Gaze can affect any number of opponents each round, like all 
other Automatic Gaze abilities can (see the entry for page 154 about Gaze).


   The Mek shouldn't really be classified a a Construct or Enchanted creature... although they 
can be if the DM wants them to be magical creations (keep in mind this would make them 
susceptible to certain spells); Frank Mentzer said the Mek are deliberately left open-ended to 
suit your campaign.
   It seems to me the Mek are meant to be rather mysterious and alien things (note the 
Intelligence is listed as "Not ratable"), and they might be more like technological creations 
or something completely different. The Monster Type should perhaps be listed as "Unknown."

   The damage for the Mek's attacks is supposed to be determined by rolls of 6d10, not 1d6x10 
(verified by Frank Mentzer).

Page 195, Mujina, Mummy, Minotaur, Mystic:


   The Mujina isn't stated as such, but it actually has a fear-causing, Automatic Gaze ability 
(it's automatic when he's not hiding his true face). See the entry for page 154 about Gaze.


   The Mummy also has a fear-causing, Automatic Gaze ability.

   Additionally, because it is vulnerable to normal fire, I don't think it should be 
classified as an Enchanted creature.


   The Minotaur was first listed in the Basic Set, before the Charge attack was introduced, 
but the Minotaur could be allowed to use the Charge in conjunction with its gore attack.
   If you make this change, add a '*' next to its HD, and adjust the XP value to be 500.


   From the Unofficial Errata: "Mystic: The leader should save as Mystic 7 and all his thief 
abilities are wrong, refer to the thief at level 7. (There was confusion here whether the 
leader was level 6 or 7). Also remember the level 4's have hands that act as silver weapons."

Page 196, Nekrozon, Nightshade:


   The Nekrozon is stated as having a Gaze ability, but this is not correct. It has a unique 
ability that was just casually referred to as a gaze. The beast actually shoots a Death Ray 
out of its eyes(!) which has has an identical effect as a Finger of Death spell (reversed 
Raise Dead).
   Deliberately looking directly into a Nekrozon's eyes will cause instant death, but this is 
another unique ability, and the standard rules for Gaze abilities do not apply here either.


   Take note that a Nightshade, to be able to use its spell-like powers of Invisibility and 
Haste upon itself, has to deactivate its Spell Immunity for as long as it wishes to gain the 
benefits of those effects (see the entry for page 155 about Spell Immunity).

Page 197, Normal Human:

   The Moldvay Basic Set says Normal Humans have only 1-4 Hit Points. The Mentzer Basic DM's 
Rulebook says they have 1 full Hit Die (1-8 HP). Then the Rules Cyclopedia changes it to 1-1 
HD (1-7 HP). Though each set contains virtually the same sentence explaining that the DM 
should choose the Hit Points rather than rolling them randomly (with each book giving the 
blacksmith the differing maximum value from above).
   I would go with the Mentzer set, and allow them to have the full 1 Hit Die. They suffer 
enough already with terrible Hit Rolls and Saving Throws!

Page 201, Pterosaur, Purple Worm, Giant Rat:


   With an 8-10 foot wingspan, the Small Pterosaur should be size Medium. Its carrying 
capacity is unlisted, but I'd recommend 500 cn at full speed, 1,000 cn at half speed (same as 
the Giant Bat).

   The Medium Pterosaur should have a wingspan of up to 30' (based on comparison to a Dragon 
of equal Hit Dice) and should be size Large. Since they are supposed to be able to carry off 
man-sized creatures, their carrying capacity should be upgraded to 5,000 cn at full speed, 
10,000 cn at half speed (other powerful flying creatures such as Dragons and Rocs use this 
same formula of 1,000 x HD to get their normal load cn).

   The Large Pterosaur's wingspan could reach up to 60', and since it's supposed to be able to 
carry off a warhorse, its carrying capacity should be upgraded in the same manner to 10,000 cn 
at full speed, 20,000 cn at half speed.

Purple Worm

   The Purple Worm has both a swallow attack and a deadly poisonous sting, so should have an 
additional '*' by its HD. Adjust the XP value to 3,750.

Rat, Giant

   The Treasure Type for the Giant Rat is supposed to be C (as shown in both the Basic DM's 
Rulebook, p.36, and the 1991 D&D Game Rulebook, p.50).

Page 202, Rust Monster:

   Rust Monsters should be size Medium. AD&D lists them as being up to 5' long.

   The Rust Monster uses Non-Standard Targeting (see the entry for page 105), and will 
probably go after the largest metallic items first (usually this would be armor or shield, 
then weapons).

Page 203, Shark:

   At 8' and 12' long, the Bull and Mako Sharks should be size Large.

Page 205, Spectral Hound, Sphinx:

Spectral Hound

   Since it can be struck by silver weapons, the Spectral Hound shouldn't be classified as an 
Enchanted creature.


   Pencil in the missing asterisks by the Sphinx's name -- it is immune to normal weapons. It 
should also be classified as an Enchanted creature because of this.

Page 206, Planar Spider:

   Note that only the 5 HD Planar Spiders should make Saving Throws as a 5th level Fighter; 
those with more HD should make Saving Throws as Fighters of equal level. However, Planar 
Spiders who are Magic-Users or Clerics might instead Save as members of those classes.  

   An extra sentence explaining the Planar Spider's combat behavior from the Master DM's Book, 
p.41, was left out of the Cyclopedia. It states, "If a character gains initiative for a round, 
he may wait until the spider appears and attack before it shifts." With all the information 
considered, I believe the shifting ability should work as follows:
   If the Spider is doing nothing but shifting, it will automatically gain initiative and 
usually be able to shift during its movement phase before anyone can attack it.
   If the Spider is attacking and it wins initiative, non-hasted opponents will only have a 
25% chance to be able to attack it before it can shift away at the end of the round.
   An opponent who wins initiative will always get to attack the spider before it shifts away, 
but he may have to delay his action until the spider appears, meaning the spider will get to 
attack first.

Page 207, Spirit:


   As an eye, hand, or skull, a Druj cannot be more than size Small.

   The Skull Druj's fear effect doesn't list a duration.... It looks as if it's only supposed 
to last one round though, and can be treated as an Activated Gaze ability (see the entry for 
page 154 about Gaze).

   An Odic's Size could be anything from Small to Large, depending on the size of the plant it 

Page 209, Rock or Cave Toad:

   For Attacks, instead of "special" it should be "Gaze" (it's an Automatic Gaze ability). And 
for Damage, instead of "charm" it should be "Paralysis."

Page 210, Troglodyte, T-Rex:


   A Troglodyte should be size Medium. AD&D lists them as being up to 6' tall.

Tyrannosaurus Rex

   The T-Rex has a swallow attack, so should have a '*' by it's HD. Adjust the XP value to 
4,175 to account for this.

Page 211, Unicorn, Vampire:


   The Unicorn could easily be given the Charge Attack. If you wish to allow it, add another 
'*' next to its HD, and adjust its XP value to be 175.


   To clear up any questions about functionality, the Vampire has an Activated Gaze ability 
(see the entry for page 154 about Gaze).

Page 212, Weasel, Whale, Wight, Wraith, Wolf:

Weasel, Giant

   The Giant Weasel has a continuous damage attack, so should have a '*' by its HD. Adjust the 
XP value to 200 to account for this.


   The average Intelligence scores for Whales were omitted from the Intelligence listing in 
the Master DM's Book (page 17), so it is uncertain where the values given in the Rules 
Cyclopedia came from. Frank Mentzer says they should actually be as follows:

Killer Whale = Int 9
Great Whale = Int 12
Narwhal = Int 10

   Also, the Great Whale was previously known as a Sperm Whale in the Dungeon Masters 
Companion, page 38.

Wight & Wraith

   Since these creatures can be struck by silver weapons, they shouldn't be classified as 
Enchanted creatures.


   A normal Wolf should be size Small, as they aren't as large as a human (AD&D lists them as 
being between 3'-4' long), while a Dire Wolf should be size Large (AD&D says they are 7'-12' 

Page 213, Yellow Mold:

   Yellow Mold should have a '*' by its name since it has some weapon immunity.

PAge 214, Monster Intelligence Table:

   The table from the Master DM's Book, page 16, contains a bit more information for monsters 
with very high Intelligence scores:


      Monster Intelligence Table

 Average  Maximum     Die Roll (1d6)
   Int.   Variance   1  2  3  4  5  6 
  18-19      2       0  0  1  1  2  2
   20+       1       0  0  1  1  1  1

Page 217-218, Undead Lieges and Pawns:

   In the table at the bottom of the page, the "4" entry for the "Hit Dice of Liege" should be 
"3-4" to account for Wights (3 HD). But note that under normal circumstances, a Wight will 
only be able to attempt to control Skeletons, since every other type of undead will have more 
than half the Wight's HD. 
   Ghouls (2 HD) are also not accounted for as potential Lieges in the table, but as with 
Skeletons and Zombies, I would just consider standard Ghouls incapable of controlling other 

   The first paragraph under "Procedure" indicates that a would-be Liege may gain control of 
an undead that is already being controlled by any means, by making a control check at -4. In 
cases where the control would normally be automatic, consider the base chance to be 2 (even 
though a ROLL of 2 will always fail), then with the -4 penalty it will basically amount to a 
required roll of 6 (although other modifiers may apply).
   Any potential Pawn that is currently under a Turn effect could be included in that, so a 
would-be Liege could make a control check at -4 to gain control of a Turned undead, and force 
it back into battle (being Turned is different than failing a Morale check, as described 
   Borrowing a mechanic from Turning, if a would-be Liege attempts to gain control of an 
undead and fails, any further control attempts by that would-be Liege to control that undead 
during that encounter will automatically fail (but control attempts against different undead 
in the same group can still succeed, since this ability targets one creature at a time).

   Following the example of the Vampire, undead spellcasters should be bumped up one level on 
the chart (if its creature type doesn't normally cast spells, that is), making it harder to 
control them. As with Turning, you might even allow spellcasting undead to make a Saving Throw 
vs. Spells to avoid any successful control attempts. 
   It seems that if control is gained over a spellcasting undead, it will lose its 
spellcasting ability until it regains free will. That would include losing all the benefits it 
gains from its spellcasting status (Saving Throws vs. Turning, +2 to control attempts, etc.).  

   Just a note: the fourth paragraph under "Benefits to a Liege" contains an incorrect 
calculation in its example. A Specter (6 HD) can control up to 12 HIT DICE of undead, not 12 
Wights (3 HD each). The Specter could control 4 Wights which could each control 6 Skeletons.

   Under "Duration of Control," to account for Lieges that can have Pawns of the same type 
(meaning an energy drainer whose victims rise up as his Pawns), assume that any Pawns which 
the Liege created will NOT be freed as usual on the night of the full moon, because once 
freed, it will be impossible for the Liege to renew control of them (because the Pawns will 
have more than half the Liege's HD), and those Pawns often increase in power when they gain 
free will. When they do gain free will, for whatever reason, treat it the same as if the Liege 
had been slain, as described in the section that follows about Energy Drainers.
   Skeletons and zombies have no will of their own, so when they are freed from control, they 
will probably just go back to the default of obeying the orders of whoever animated them.

Page 226-227, Gems and Jewelry:

   The tables here for determining the worth of gems and jewelry (originally from the 
Companion set) give values that are way, way too much for low level characters, even if you 
apply the suggested -10 to the roll for characters under 9th level.
   I strongly recommend using the methods from the Basic Dungeon Master's Rulebook, p.41, if 
the average party level is less than 5: 

   Gem Value Table

 % Roll       Value  
 01-20          10 gp
 21-45          50 gp
 46-75         100 gp
 76-95         500 gp
 96-00        1000 gp

   For jewelry, just roll 3d6 and multiply by 100, for a total value of 300-1800 gp.

   Once the characters reach 5th level, it will probably be fine to use the tables in the 
Cyclopedia, applying the -10 to the roll until they are 9th level.

Page 228, Magical Items:

Magical Items

   The book of Marvelous Magic, page 2, has some good guidelines for getting magic items 
identified. I will paraphrase here to the extent that it applies to magic items found in the 
   A Slate of Identification can be used to learn the command words for other magical items. 
The Slate should become a part of every campaign by belonging to a powerful NPC Magic-User, 
who sells its services to others. For a stiff fee (usually not less than 1,000 gp per word), 
the NPC identifies the command word(s) of most items.
   The NPC should keep the Slate's existence secret and offer only the service. This avoids 
attempts at theft. 
   A Wish used to identify an item always reveals all its command words. The true name and 
nature of a cursed item, however, might remain secret.
   You may, of course, invent other items for reveling the names and command words of magical 
items, but try never to simply give them away; always require thought, ingenuity, or cash for 
their discovery.

Using Magical Items

   Note what is said in the third paragraph under this topic: In order to activate a magical 
item, the user may not move, cast a spell, or take any other action during that round. And 
although it says concentration is required, it does not indicate that disturbing the character 
will prevent the magic item from being activated, as it would with spellcasting (items are not 
as difficult to activate). Many effects, though, specifically say that concentration is 
prevented, which would obviously prevent a character from activating a magic item that 
required any concentration, and would even prevent the use of some items that don't 
specifically require concentration. For example, even if an effect prevents concentration, a 
Potion could still pretty easily be drank, but reading a scroll would be very difficult, and 
even remembering and correctly speaking a command word might be prevented....
   Most magic items don't seem to fall within the above general method of activation. For 
example, Scrolls are read, Potions are drank, many miscellaneous items are activated by 
command words or various other methods, and magic sword talents are specifically noted as not 
requiring any concentration (probably meaning activation is by command word). Activating those 
items will usually count as your action for the round (although some sword talents are usable 
even after making an attack), but won't restrict your normal movement. 
   Each item's description needs to be checked to determine if the item is activated 
automatically, by command word, by concentration, or by simply using it as an item of 
equipment.... If it isn't specified, then assume the general method is used, meaning no 
movement or other action may be performed during that round, or if you prefer, assign a 
command word.
   The Book of Marvelous Magic adds the following information regarding command words.

   "Since command words are spoken, a Cleric's Silence 15' Radius spell (or similar magical 
effect) always prevents the use of such magical items.
   "A character with an Intelligence score of 6 or less may have trouble remembering a command 
word, or might not pronounce it properly. The chance of such errors is left to the DM's 
discretion, but should be based on a single dice roll and easy to apply during a game. For 
example, a 6-sided die could be rolled for each attempted use of a command word; if the result 
is equal to or higher than the character's Intelligence score, the attempt fails. Such a 
failure should count as one round's action. The command words for certain powerful items, or 
several command words for a single item, may require a similar check using 1d8, 1d10, 1d12, or 
even 1d20! Whatever procedure is used, apply it equally and fairly to all characters."


Cursed Items

   The Book of Marvelous Magic, page 2, states that curses basically lie dormant and 
undetectable in magic items, and cannot be removed until they actually take effect. I think 
the information is quite good and applies even to items not found in the Book of Marvelous 
Magic, so I'll quote it all here.

   "Nearly any magical item found can be either normal or cursed -- and there is absolutely no 
way to tell the difference. Any cursed item will appear to be a normal one, whatever the means 
of identification (libram, slate, etc.). The curse will become apparent when the item is used 
or, in some cases, touched. You should never mention that an item is cursed, until, perhaps, 
after the curse takes effect. Any curse can be removed, though some are harder to affect than 
others. However, most curses cannot be prevented, and must be lifted after they take effect; a 
Remove Curse spell applied to an unused cursed item will have absolutely no effect. A Wish is 
the only means powerful enough to absolutely 'cleanse' an item without coping with the 
   "The curses mentioned in this book may be one of four types; each can be removed by a 
Remove Curse or Dispel Evil spell, but differ in that the spell caster must be of a given 
level or greater. A minor curse can be removed by any level of caster. A second type of curse 
can be removed by any caster of 15th level or greater; a third requires a caster of 26th level 
or higher. The most powerful (and most rare) curses require a caster of 36th level for their 
removal. Any Wish used to remove a curse is treated as if produced by a 36th level caster and 
thus will remove any curse."

   It would be handy to make a note of the chances of getting a cursed item here, rather than 
having to go digging through the item descriptions to find them. The thing is, the Rules 
Cyclopedia has reduced the chances of an item being cursed.... I would go by the previous 
chances, which can be found in the Basic DM's Manual, p.42-43, and also in the 1991 D&D Game 
Rulebook, p.58:

Chance for an item to be cursed
 Sword - 3/20
 Armor or Shield - 1/8
 Misc. Weapon - 2/20

   I would assume that missile devices and missiles could be included as "Misc. Weapons," so 
don't forget to check them too. If you're feeling really evil, you might also want to apply 
that to any other Miscellaneous Magical Items found, and even rings, potions, wands, etc., 
since any magic item might contain some kind of curse....

   Also be wary; the Cyclopedia has added in specific numbers that weren't found in any of the 
previous sets as to what level is needed to remove a curse from entire classes of items. Page 
245 says that a 26th level caster is needed to permanently remove a curse from a sword, and  
page 242 states that only a 36th level Cleric can permanently remove a curse from magical 
armor! Not only were these number never stated in any other set, but they are far too powerful 
to apply to every cursed sword or suit of armor found. Please ignore those blanket statements, 
and instead just go by the guidelines outlined above from the Book of Marvelous Magic, and 
those found on page 229 of the Cyclopedia.

Magic Item Subtables

   It's probably worth noting that Elves can normally use any item that is listed as usable by 
a Magic-User.

Page 229, Spell Scrolls, Magical Item Encumbrance:

Spell Scrolls

   The table in Basic DM's Rulebook, p.42, allowed spell scrolls to contain 1, 2, or 3 spells 
each. The Expert Rulebook, p.36, allowed scrolls to contain 1, 2, 3, 5, or 7 spells on each 
scroll. The table in the DM's Companion, p.44, omitted any information regarding how to 
determine the number of spells on a scroll. It seems the Rules Cyclopedia has reverted to the 
Basic standards of only allowing 1, 2, or 3 spells per scroll, and it contradicts itself in 
the method of determination; the table here shows a roll of 1d100 to determine if the scroll 
contains 1, 2, or 3 spells, but the footnote says to roll 1d3 for the number of spells....
   I recommend ignoring both those options, and adapting something more in line with the last 
"good" method presented (from the Expert Rulebook) for determining the number of spells on a 
scroll. You can easily use the table here for determining the LEVEL of Cleric or Druid spells 
to also determine the NUMBER of spells on any scroll (Magic-User scrolls included). This will 
result in 1-7 spells on each scroll, with a rapidly decreasing chance to roll the higher 
numbers. It ends up working quite well.

Magic Item Encumbrance

   The weights for many different items can be penciled in beside their names here. Some items 
have a set weight already, and some can be determined by looking at similar, non-magical 
items. When that fails, I referenced the item in AD&D.

Potion = 10 cn
Scroll = 1 cn
Wand = 10 cn
Staff = 40 cn
Rod = 20 cn
Ring = 1 cn*

Boots = 10 cn*
Broom = 40 cn
Crystal Ball = 130 cn (includes Ball:100 cn, Base: 20 cn, and Wrap: 10 cn)
Egg = 3 cn
Cloak = 15 cn*
Gauntlets = 20 cn**
Girdle = 10 cn*
Helm = 30 cn**
Horn = 30 cn
Nail = 1 cn

* If this item is being worn, as opposed to being packed away, its encumbrance is considered 
to be 0.

** Encumbrance is considered 0 if this item is being worn along with a set of armor, in which 
case, its weight is already included in the total encumbrance of the armor.

   Also, you can pencil in, "1/10 = 5' Rad" next to the Ring of Protection +1, because 10% of 
these rings are the 5' Radius version. This was omitted from the item description in the Rules 
Cyclopedia, but can be found on p.53 of the Expert Rulebook.

Page 230-231, Magical Weapon Tables:

   In Table 6, "Armor and Shields," if the roll for the size of the armor indicates "Giant," I 
suggest instead generating a set of magical barding for a horse (because characters would have 
a very hard time finding a use for a giant-sized set of armor...). If a shield is included 
with the set of barding, it should be a normal-sized shield for the rider. A result of a lone 
giant-sized shield should just be re-rolled, unless you want to give out a giant, two-handed 
   When rolling for the armor bonus, the Cyclopedia has "Banded, Scale, or Leather" all in the 
first column, but this is incorrect as a result of improper formatting of the original table 
from the Companion set. Frank Mentzer says "Scale, Banded, or Chain" should instead go 
together in the second column. He also says that magical Suit Armor "is suitable for greater 
enchantment due to its generally higher quality & craftsmanship. Thus, use the Shield column" 
when determining the bonus for Suit armor (not the Plate column as shown in the Cyclopedia).
   Any set of magical armor will weigh only half as much as normal (see entry for page 242). 
This includes barding, but not shields.

   In Table 7, "Missile Weapons and Missiles," for the ** footnote, at the end you can pencil 
in, "& 1/2 # found." This was omitted from the Rules Cyclopedia. It's from the DM's Companion, 
p.56, which basically says that if a Talent is present, divide the number of missiles found by 
2 (rounding up). All the missiles will have the same talent.

   For the Chance of Additional Modifiers on Tables 8 and 9, the procedures from the DM's 
Companion, p.57, were omitted. It works like this: IF an additional modifier is present, you 
check again to see if another is present. Miscellaneous Weapons can have up to 2 additional 
modifiers/talents, so they stop there. Swords can have up to 3 additional modifiers/talents, 
so if 2 are present, you check for one more. 
   You might also want to rule that once a weapon has a modifier against an opponent type, any 
other modifiers for the weapon will automatically be talents. Otherwise, if you rolled a sword 
that had 3 additional modifiers, it's likely you'd get something like a Sword +1, +2 vs. 
reptiles, +3 vs. undead, +2 vs. giants....

   When rolling up Miscellaneous Weapons, you can either use the incomplete table on the left, 
or the incomplete table on the right (but there's no such thing as a Returning War Hammer...), 
OR, you can use my table, which actually includes EVERY miscellaneous weapon available, 
including a standard Rock (p.65, "Rock, Thrown," or Tossed Object on the Weapon Mastery Table; 
A Rock could also be held in the hand as a melee weapon...). Hey, why not? Primitive cultures 
might create magical rocks.... And then you might roll up some cool bonuses for it, like a 
Flaming Rock +3, +5 vs. Bugs. A Torch is available too.... A magical Torch could be used as a 
weapon (see entry for page 66 about the Torch), plus it would be very durable and might burn 
as long as a lantern (4 hours) for each flask of oil poured over it.

               Table 9, Miscellaneous Weapons
 1d100  Weapon          Class | 1d100  Weapon          Class
  1-6   Axe, Battle       C   | 63-64  Pike              D 
  7-12  Axe, Hand         B   | 65-66  Polearm, Other    D 
 13-14  Blackjack         C   | 67-68  Poleaxe           D 
 15-17  Bola              B   | 69-70  Rock              B 
 18-19  Cestus            C   | 71-72  Shield, Horn      C 
 20-22  Club              C   | 73-74  Shield, Knife     C 
 23-31  Dagger            B   | 75-76  Shield, Sword     C 
 32-33  Halberd           D   | 77-78  Shield, Tusk      D 
 34-39  Hammer, Throwing  B   | 79-84  Spear             B 
 40-45  Hammer, War       C   | 85-90  Staff             D 
 46-49  Javelin           B   | 91-93  Torch             C 
 50-53  Lance             D   | 94-97  Trident           B 
 54-59  Mace              C   | 98-00  Whip              C 
 60-62  Net               B   |

 All Class B weapons have 1/4 chance to be Returning weapons.

   Finally, in the Additional Weapon Modifiers Table, "Enchanted monsters" should really be 
"Weapon-immune monsters" (see entry for page 247).

Page 234, Potion of Super Healing:

   If you don't want to have to look up the Cure Critical Wounds spell to find this, you can 
just pencil in "3d6+3" as the amount this potion heals.

Page 234-235, Spell Scrolls:

   You can draw an asterisks on p.235 by "Spells," then make a footnote at the bottom of the 
page: "* Level of effect = lowest level needed to cast (minimum 6th level)"

   The level of effect of Spell Scrolls is never specifically discussed in D&D, but it can be 
inferred from looking at the rules in several places. The rule on p.228 says, "If the range 
and duration of the effect produced by a magical item is not given, treat it as if it were 
cast by a 6th level caster." Also, in the rules for Dispel Magic from the Master's set (see 
entry for page 48), a scroll is given an effective level equal to the lowest level needed to 
cast the most powerful spell it contains. AD&D uses an almost identical rule for scrolls.
   The results of this are important. A Fireball Scroll would cause 6d6 damage. A Magic 
Missile Scroll would fire 3 missiles. A Delayed Blast Fireball Scroll would be cast at 15th 
level, for 15d6 damage. A Dispel Magic from a Magic-User scroll would be cast at 6th level, 
but if it were a Clerical Dispel Magic scroll, it would be cast at 8th level.

   Note that scrolls are treated as Magical Items rather than actual spellcasting. Page 234 
indicates that a scroll only needs to be read to release its effect, and doesn't indicate that 
any concentration is required... so a scroll could still be used after taking damage in a 
round, for example.

   Similarly to other magical items, a Magic-User spell scroll has to be properly 
"identified" before it can be used. A Magic-User does this by use of a Read Magic spell. Once 
the Magic-User has "identified" a particular scroll, he can later use any spell from it 
without using Read Magic again, or he may copy the contents of the scroll into his spellbook.
   Clerics and Druids can read their scrolls without any magical aid. Other character may find 
the names of the spells on a Clerical/Druidic scroll by use of a Read Magic Spell (as stated 
in the DM's Companion Book, p.51). 
   Thieves could be treated similarly to Magic-Users in needing to "identify" a scroll before 
it could be used. Once a Thief reaches 10th level, his Read Languages ability could be allowed 
to apply toward identifying Magic-User spell scrolls, and he must first successfully determine 
the contents of the scroll before he can use it (he has an 80% chance; see p.23 about the Read 
Languages ability). 

   Just like with Thieves using scrolls, Elves and Magic-Users have a 10% chance of failure 
when using a scroll, if the spell is of a level the character is not capable of memorizing 
(see the entry for page 131).
   Finally, in the section, "Casting the Scroll Spell," the last sentence says that each 
scroll may only be used once, but it should say each SPELL on the scroll may only be used 

Page 235, Protection Scrolls:

   The scrolls that protect against a variable number of creatures in different categories do 
not protect against all the categories at the same time. In other words, the Protection from 
Lycanthropes scroll will not protect against 1d10 Wererats AND 1d8 Werewolves; it protects 
against 1d10 Wererats OR 1d8 Werewolves each round. This works fine as long as you only meet 
groups of similar Lycanthropes. Should a mixed group of Lycanthropes be encountered, it 
becomes more difficult to determine which are blocked and in what number.... Some ways to 
handle this are detailed below.
   Creatures should be blocked in the order they attempt to attack. Once all the protection is 
used up in a round (by blocking attacks from the maximum number of creatures or HD rolled), 
any further attacks will bypass the barrier. A creature cannot be "partially blocked." If a 
creature would be partially blocked, it is considered fully blocked (e.g., if only 1 HD of 
protection remains for the barrier this round, it will still block at least 1 creature before 
the barrier fails).

Protection from Lycanthropes

    Because the Lycanthropes don't have a wide spread of Hit Dice, and they are grouped 
together closely on the table by HD, this works out really well if you just ditch the table 
and have it block 3d10 Hit Dice of Lycanthropes each round. The number of creatures blocked 
will end up being very close to what is given in the table, and mixed groups will be easy to 

Protection from Undead

   The Undead have a much wider spread of Hit Dice, so attempting to set a number of HD to 
block just won't work out right. However, since each listed category basically cuts the number 
of affected creature by half, the following system works well.

Roll 2d12 to determine the total number of creatures blocked each round.
Blocking more powerful Undead will count as blocking more than one creature: 

Each blocked                   counts as 
Skeleton, Zombie, or Ghoul     1 creature
Wight, Wraith, or Mummy        2 creatures
Spectre or Vampire             4 creatures
Phantom, Haunt, or Spirit     12 creatures

A non-standard Undead will be blocked as if it were the same creature it "Turns as."

   You may notice that the number of blocked Phantoms, Haunts, or Spirits was not listed in 
the Cyclopedia. The number that will be blocked (1-2) is actually a suggested update from 
Frank Mentzer (because the original Protection from Undead scroll was listed in the Basic set, 
before the really powerful Undead were introduced). He also states that this scroll will not 
block any Undead more powerful than a Spirit; such creatures are completely unaffected by the 
scroll. However, he offers us another option: the Scroll of Greater Protection from Undead. 
   The following item is based upon his suggestions:

   When any Protection from Undead Scroll is found, roll 1d6. On a 1, the item is a Greater 
Protection from Undead Scroll. This item will not block as many total Undead, but it is 
capable of blocking a few of even the most powerful types of Undead, as follows:


 Greater Protection from Undead Scroll

     Creature Type           # blocked
 Skelitons, Zombies, Ghouls     1d8
 Wights, Wraiths, Mummies       1d6
 Spectres, Vampires             1d4
 Phantoms, Haunts, Spirits      1d2
 Nightshade, Lich, Special       1

   Unlike the standard Protection from Undead Scroll, this one WILL block all the listed 
categories at once. In other words, it will block 1d8 creatures from the first category AND 
1d6 creatures from the second category (and so on) each round.

Page 236, Wands, Staves:

Wand of Metal Detection

   As with the other wands that detect mundane things by pointing at them (i.e., secret door 
detection & trap detection) a charge should only be spent if the detection is successful.

Wand of Negation

   Well, this one is certainly vague and leaves some serious questions as to timing and 
duration.... I would suggest handling it in one of two ways:
   1. If the user is holding it in hand, it will automatically negate the effect of any wand 
or staff that would affect him (using one charge each time, and only one charge may be spent 
each round). Additionally, the user may expend a charge to negate, with a 120' range, any non-
instantanious effect generated by a wand or staff. The negation is permanent, but the wand or 
staff that was negated can, of course, be used to re-create the effect.
   2. Or, if you just want to handle it in an easier fashion, it simply casts Dispel Magic as 
a 6th level caster (using one charge each time), and may also be used for a Touch Dispel (see 
entry for page 48 about Dispel Magic).

Wand of Polymorphing

   The range should be 60', as with the spell.

Staff of Dispelling

   The effect of this staff can just be treated as a 15th level Touch Dispel (see entry for 
page 48 about Dispel Magic). Notably, this will change the duration of the effect from "1d4" 
to "1d10" rounds.

Page 237, Staves:

Staff of Striking

   The damage of 2d6 breaks down to 1d6 of normal staff damage (which can change based on 
Weapon Mastery), and 1d6 of magical striking damage if a charge is expended. 

Staff of Withering

   (See the entry for page 143 to handle magical aging attacks.) 
   Since there aren't many ways to remove magical aging, you might optionally allow this staff 
to also be usable in reverse, removing 10 years of magical aging per application, costing 1 
charge each time. This will not remove natural aging.

Page 238, Rings:

Ring of Protection

   I really recommend that multiple Protection rings should not be allowed to have cumulative 
effects. Use the following rule from the 1E AD&D DMG, p.130, "More than 1 Ring of Protection 
on the same person, or in the same area, do not combine protection; only one -- the strongest, 
if applicable -- will function..."  

Ring of Seeing

   Since the duration of "3 Turns" far exceeds the duration of very powerful Truesight spell 
on which the ring is based, it is suggested that the duration of the ring's effect be reduced 
to only "1 Turn." 

Ring of Telekinesis

   The speed at which objects can be moved is 20' per round (taken from the Telekinesis spell 
on p.52).
   Note that the ring is more limited than the spell, since the range is only 50' and it can 
only affect inanimate objects.

Page 239, Magical Bags, Boots, & Gauntlets:

Bag of Holding

   Apparently a bag of holding will weigh as much as its contents x .06, however, AD&D 
actually uses a simpler method that doesn't require any calculations: the Bag of Holding will 
always weigh 600cn no matter what it contains. Use whichever method you prefer.

   You may want to apply this, and the other functionality of the Bag of Holding, to a Bag of 
Devouring too, so that players will have a hard time telling them apart.

Magical Boots & Gauntlets

   The Book of Marvelous Magic -- which contains tables for rolling up all the standard 
Miscellaneous Magic Items listed in the Cyclopedia along with many new ones -- states on page 
19 that all magical boots enlarge or shrink to fit any humanoid foot, from that of a pixie to 
that of a giant. And page 35 of that book states that magical Gauntlets will change size in a 
like manner to fit the wearer.

Boots of Speed

   These boots could also allow a character to make impressive running jumps (but not standing 
jumps). See the entry for page 88 about Jumping & Leaping.

Page 242, Magical Armor and Shields:

   I would disregard the sentence that says a Halfling shield offers no protection to a 
normal-sized character; it could still be used as if it where a Target or Buckler (p.67). 
   I also suggest that any giant-sized armor should be replaced with barding. A lone giant-
sized shield should just be re-rolled.

   The DM's Companion, p.55, had a table which listed encumbrance values of magical armor 
based on each different size category for each type of armor. This seemed a bit overly-
complicated to me. Asked about alternate ways of handling this, Frank Mentzer said, "If you're 
going to change it, then Magical Armor of any sort should have a weight of one-half of the 
non-magical variety." This should include barding, but not shields.
   I find this method to be much more streamlined and easy to implement.


   The description of how this special power interacts with Gaze abilities gets a bit 
uncertain. Basically, the armor or shield is very reflective and mirror-like, so the wearer is 
actually treated as if he's wielding a mirror (see the entry for page 154 about Gaze 
abilities). When in combat against a creature with a Gaze ability, the wearer can just watch 
the creature's reflection in the armor or shield instead of looking directly at the creature, 
and is able to do this so easily that he may attack without penalties.

Page 243, Missile Talents:


   The given example is wrong. Curing missiles will heal 2d6 damage, plus 2 additional points 
for each magical bonus of the missile. Therefore a Curing Arrow +2 would heal 2d6+4. So if a 5 
was rolled on the dice, the Curing Arrow +2 would heal 9 points, not 7.

Page 245, Designing Special Swords:

   Here is some omitted information from the Expert Rulebook, p.60:

Special Swords

   Special Swords are created by powerful beings for definite purposes. These swords are then 
carefully placed where they will be found and eventually put to their special use. The 
following special purposes are suggested; the DM may create others. No Special Sword is ever 
created for more than one Special Purpose.

   1.  Slay a character type (such as Clerics)
   2.  Slay a monster type (such as gargoyles)
   3.  Slay a specific being 
   4.  Slay a race type (such as demi-humans)
   5.  Defeat a specific Alignment

   Every Special Sword has a score of 12 for both Intelligence (see chart for languages and 
abilities) and Ego. Each Special Sword gains the following abilities, determined by the 
sword's alignment, when used for its special purpose:

   - A Lawful sword will paralyze a Chaotic opponent struck unless 
     the victim makes a Saving Throw vs. Spells.
   - A Neutral sword adds +1 to all of the user's Saving Throws.
   - A Chaotic sword will cause a Lawful opponent struck to 
     make a Saving Throw vs. Turn to Stone or be Turned to Stone.

Page 246, Primary Powers:

   The Dwarven detection abilities "Detect Shifting Walls and Rooms" and "Detect Slopes" are 
not as useful as the other Primary Powers for an intelligent sword, especially when split into 
two separate abilities. I suggest that if either of these results are rolled, the sword should 
be given a wider range of Dwarven Detection abilities, so that it can detect sliding walls, 
sloping corridors, and new construction. This will still only count as one Primary Power.

Page 247, Weapon Bonus vs. Opponent:

   "Enchanted monsters" should really say "Weapon-Immune monsters." The description indicates 
the bonus is meant to apply toward monsters that can not be hit by normal or silver weapons 
(although creatures with this level of Immunity ARE classified as Enchanted, not ALL Enchanted 
creatures are Weapon-Immune; see the entry for page 153). If this bonus were to actually apply 
to all Enchanted monsters, it would cover too huge a cross-section of creatures, including 
practically all undead, constructs, and planar monsters (which each have their own entry in 
this section), along with any other creature that is summoned, controlled, or charmed. 

Page 248, Talents - Flaming:

   The Expert Rulebook, page 59, notes for the flaming sword, "All damage from this sword when 
flaming is treated as fire damage (for example, trolls cannot regenerate damage inflicted by 
   The hodgepodge list of opponents and bonuses for the Flaming talent is taken from the same 
description of the Flaming Sword in the Expert Rulebook, but I feel this is rather messy and 
should just be dropped, since the Companion set added categories for weapon bonuses that would 
overlap some of these (like specific bonuses vs Undead and Regenerating Creatures).
   Instead, I would just apply an extra +2 bonus for the flames when used against Earth-Based 
creatures (as per the Elemental Dominance principals from page 264), or other creatures that 
would are particularly vulnerable to fire.
   Further, you could allow other types of Elemental swords aw well. Just roll 1d4 when 
"Flaming" comes up as a talent, and use one of the variations:
1. Fire - Flaming talent. The weapon blazes with flames, granting an additional +2 bonus 
against Earth-type creatures and other things which are particularly vulnerable to fire.
2. Water - Ice talent. On command, the weapon will sweat water droplets which freezes and 
encase it in ice, which grants an additional +2 bonus against Fire-based creatures or other 
things that would be vulnerable to cold. 
3. Air - Lighting talent. This weapon will become charged with arcing electricity, which will 
double its magical bonus when used against Water-type creatures.
4. Earth - Venom talent. This weapon will drip with a sticky poison which will cause extra 
damage to any creature not immune. The poison will inflict damage equal to twice the weapon's 
magical bonus, but the victim make make a Saving Throw vs Poison (with a penalty equal to the 
weapon bonus) to halve that damage.

   When the talent is active, all damage inflicted by these weapons is treated as elemental 
damage of the appropriate type. This can result in double damage against actual elemental 
creatures! Refer again to the Elemental Dominance section on page 264.

Page 250, Making Magical Items:

   Upon analysis, I came to the conclusion that the magic item creation rules in the Rules 
Cyclopedia are not well-written, the examples given aren't easy to follow, some of the example 
don't even seem correct, the chances of success are abysmal, and the prices produced were all 
wonky.... So I created my own rules for this, which are based on ideas from the Rules 
Cyclopedia and the Expert Rulebook guidelines for magic item creation.
   Those rules should be available separately where you downloaded this Document.

Page 253, Making Magical Constructs:

   In Chapter 3, the Create Magical Monsters and Create Any Monster spells indicate that they 
are used in the creation of magical Constructs. They each have a sentence saying, "Chapter 16 
contains more rules for enchanting magical items (including constructs), and has suggestions 
regarding nondispellable constructs." However, these "suggestions regarding nondispellable 
constructs" were never given....
   I think, though, the Undead Beholder can be used as an example of a nondispellable 
Construct. The reason being that it is both a Construct AND an Undead creature... (and is 
meant to be a truly powerful monster that shouldn't have an easy-to-exploit vulnerability). So 
if a Magic-User wishes to make some new form of construct that is nondispellable, he will have 
to bind an Undead spirit to it during the creation process. The DM will have to determine the 
method of doing this, which will probably incur many extra costs.   
   This will cause the Construct to no longer be treated as merely a "permanent magical item" 
which is susceptible to Dispel Magic (since the Undead spirit is powering the Construct, 
rather than pure magical energy), but the creature WILL be vulnerable to Turning by Clerics, 
or other effects that target Undead. Also, the creature will likely be more intelligent than a 
typical mindless Construct.

Page 255, Spell Research:

   The method for researching spells uses the same formulas that are used for creating magic 
items, which, as noted in the entry for page 250, I do not like. I have redone this process as 
well, and will include it here since it is much shorter than my process for creating magic 
items (which is available in a separate document).

   Any spellcaster of any level can research spells, though a spellcaster can only research 
spells of a level he is capable of casting. 
   Magic-Users can research commonly-known spells to add to their spellbooks, or can do 
research to create their own custom spells from scratch. Spell research will often require 
access to a large library. Magic-User guilds would likely have copies of most common spells 
within their libraries, or another Magic-Users's spellbook can be used as research material 
for any spell contained in that book. Each Magic-User must work out his own unique magical 
formula, and cannot just memorize and cast the same formulas that are in someone else's 
spellbook. If a Magic-User does not have a copy of the spell he is researching (even a common 
spell), he must use the procedure for building a spell from scratch. Spell research also 
requires the use of spell components to help work out magical formulas. The costs for common 
components are included in the calculations below. If the Magic-User wishes to create a new, 
unique spell, the DM may require him to go on a quest for rare components.
   Clerics never need to research common spells, since they automatically have access to all 
such spells which they are capable of casting, but they can do research and meditation to gain 
access to unusual spells, ancient lost spells, or even to create their own unique spells.... 
For Clerics, this process might involve studying ancient scriptures, sacrificing valuable 
items, and long hours of meditation (at the same cost and time requirements for Magic-Users). 
Once a Cleric has successfully researched a new spell, he (alone) will always have access to 
it through the usual meditation. Clerics use their Wisdom score instead of Intelligence in the 
formulas below.

Researching a spell from scratch
1000 GP and 1 Week per spell level
Chance of Success:
(Int x 4 + Spellcaster Level) - (Spell Level x 3) = % Chance

Research an existing spell using a copy
400 GP and 4 days per spell level*
Chance of Success:
(Int x 4 + Spellcaster Level) - (Spell Level) = % Chance

* If the spellcaster wants to burn through more components, he can get his research done 
faster; for each extra 100 GP he spends on components, he may subtract 1 day from the required 
time (to a minimum of 1 day). Or if he wishes to take more time and be careful with his 
components, he can use less of them to save money; for each extra day taken, subtract 100 GP 
from the cost (to a minimum of 100 GP). 

Any roll of 95 or higher is always a failure.

If a spellcaster fails in his research, and if he takes no more than a week off before trying 
to research the same spell again, he may do so with a cumulative +10% Chance of Success and a 
cumulative -20% applied to the cost and time required for each successive attempt he makes 
(round research times up to the next full day).

Page 258, Languages:

   In the Moldvay edition of the Basic D&D set, page B13, it's noted, "Any monster with its 
own language has a 20% chance of also speaking Common."  

Page 262, Ending an Adventure:

   The actual rules for dividing XP at the end of an adventure seem to have been omitted from 
the Rules Cyclopedia. They should have appeared after the last paragraph in this section. 
From the Basic Dungeon Master's Rulebook, p.12:
   Add all the XP awards for all the encounters to find the total XP for the adventure. Find 
the number of shares in the party. NPC retainers count as 1/2 share for XP division; each 
character counts as a full share. Finally, divide the total XP by the number of shares to find 
the XP per share, and announce that total. A retainer will get 1/2 the amount you announce.
   Remind the players to adjust that award for high or low Prime Requisites (+5%, +10% or a 
penalty). They may ask you to help calculate it. You should also remind them that they get 1 
XP for each 1 gp of treasure. As treasure is divided by the party, without your interference, 
they must make such calculations themselves. Their bonus or penalty (for high or low PR score) 
also applies.
   At this point you should also announce any individual or miscellaneous XP awards from 
Chapter 10.
  I would recommend that characters who died during the adventure should still receive their 
share of the encounter XP. This is in case they are to be later raised from the dead. If the 
character died very early in the adventure, he could optionally only get 1/2 a share, unless 
he contributed quite a lot before he died....
  Even if the character is not going to be raised from the dead, he should still get his share 
of the XP rather than letting the surviving characters profit from his death (they are already 
going to get his share of the treasure), and also, the dead character's XP total can be used 
in determining the starting level of a replacement character for the player. A good house rule 
is to take the XP total of the dead character and cut it in half, and use that for the 
starting XP of the replacement character the player rolls up. In an ongoing campaign, this 
allows the new character to be of approximately the same level as the existing characters, but 
he'll be set back a level or so as a penalty for dying.
  If the characters are getting to the point where their replacement's starting level is more 
than 2 or 3, you can follow the rules from page 130 about creating high-level characters in 
order to determine starting equipment and magical items.

Page 266, Variant Rules:

   I feel I should mention that I really don't recommend using any of the optional rules 
presented in this section, and most certainly not the ones allowing Demi-humans or Mystics to 
advance up to 36th level. Many people might look over this and think, "Hey, removing the level 
limits for Demi-Humans... good idea." However, if you actually look at the numbers used here, 
you'll find that Demi-Humans will be far worse off than if you just use the standard Attack 
Rank progression (Mystics, on the other hand, will become far too powerful).
   Halflings, especially, get terribly penalized by these rules. The main problem is that 
these XP charts were built by looking at the Attack Rank progressions, and equating each 
Attack Rank to one level of experience. However, Attack Ranks are more difficult to gain than 
a standard level, typically requiring around twice as much XP, so the numbers on this chart 
become overinflated. Charging a Halfling 300,000 XP for every level between 9 and 18 will set 
him back terribly from where he'd normally be, and giving him the hit rolls of a Cleric rather 
than a Fighter will mean his hit rolls are going to be far, far worse than if you just use the 
standard Attack Rank progression. Using the progression here, a Halfling reaches level 18 at 
3,000,000 XP (when a standard Fighter reaches level 32) but will only be hitting as if he were 
a Fighter of level 13-15. Normally he'd be hitting as a fighter of level 22-24 at that XP 
total. The benefit of 10-15 extra Hit Points by then just doesn't balance it out.
   In summary: Don't use these optional rules for Demi-Human advancement; the standard rules 
for Attack Ranks work fine.

   However, I will throw in an optional rule here, because, in truth, Demi-Humans do need some 
revision to handle the very high levels... though not as much as one might think. The Demi-
Humans' one fatal flaw as compared to humans is their very limited Hit Points at high levels. 
I recommend letting all Demi-Humans gain +2 Hit Points for each Attack Rank they gain after 
maximum level (this is similar to a human gaining +1 HP per level, as a Cleric or Magic-User 
does). It's a small tweak, but the extra Hit Points will really help keep them from falling 
too far behind at high levels.

Death in the Campaign

   You could simply place a limit on the total number of times any character can be brought 
back from the dead, equal to the character's Constitution score (e.g., a character with a 12 
Constitution can only be brought back from the dead a total of 12 times).

Page 273-288, Maps:

   The scale for the detailed area maps on these pages is not mentioned in the Rules 
Cyclopedia, but it is apparently 8 miles per hex. It's important to note this since the 
Dominion rules use calculations based on 24-mile hexes.

 For any complaints regarding the content of this document, refer to the entry for page 144.

                                      "Aaron was here"