News — TSR

Gazetteers: A bit of old italy with the Republic of Darokin

Clyde Caldwell Gazetteer Stephen Fabian TSR

In the mid to late 1980s TSR tried to build on the success of their Basic D&D boxed set series by adapting a world dedicated to these supplements.  The result, Gazetteers, an impressive series of campaign setting books detailing the Known World as broken up into various countries. There were really no huge surprises or inspirations here as the design staff simply took real world empires throughout time and placed them haphazardly into the setting while sprinkling in nations dedicated to Dwarves, Elves, Halflings, and Orcs.  Still, the art from these books are excellent. Today, I look at GAZ 11...

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Dragon #103: Art goodness from November 1985

Dragon Magazine Elmore Roger Raupp TSR

I have to admit that doing an art review on any Dragon Magazine is a tough proposition because the bulk of the pages are filled with rather stunning gaming advertisements.  Still, there are three features that you can be assured are always reviewable with the magazine, the cover, the articles, and the comics. Today, I’ll be looking over Dragon Magazine #103.  Obviously, the first thing that is going to catch your eye about this particular issue is the stunning cover by artist Robert Pritchard back in 1984 [the issue itself is from November 1985].  I don’t know much about Pritchard,...

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Dungeoneer's Survival Guide: Delve Away!

Douglas Niles Easley Jim Roslof TSR

Back in the mid-1980s my DM, Mark, and I had a kind of gaming arms race going on.  Unfortunately for me, our remote location in rural northern Indiana didn’t give me access to a gaming store that wasn’t more than an hour away, and his older brother Greg, already in college, always managed to get him info and product well before I could lay hands on it.  This was the case with most everything pertaining to AD&D until at last, in 1986, I managed to get my first hardcover TSR book before him.   That book, Dungeoneer’s Survival Guide. Unfortunately for...

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Marvel Super Hereos RPG: When comics were still innocent

Marvel Super Heroes TSR

In 1984 the growing popularity of TSR’s product line finally managed to gain a license for the Marvel Comics Universe with the release of the Marvel Super Heroes RPG.  It was in interesting endeavor and featured the new table mechanics that were sweeping TSR at the time as well as a heavy reliance on battle maps.  Years later, the success of Wizkids Heroclix showed full well that even in a flagging comic market such a miniatures-driven model could work, but back in 1984 the game never fully achieved orbit.  Still, it did have a massive number of supplements, and I...

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Nothing revolting about Revolt on Antares

Bill Willingham Erol Otus Jeff Dee TSR

Back in 1981, just before the TSR art department turned on itself when it began to ‘grow up’ and terminated the contracts of Jeff Dee and Bill Willingham, moved Jim Roslof to art director, and relegated Erol Otus to the role of random freelancer, the company created a number of very fun pocket games. One of these, Revolt on Antares, came to my attention when my friend Mark laid hands on a box from his older brother’s gaming collection.  Inside, the pocket game awaited, and on four occasions during my late high school days we had a chance to play...

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