How do you approach playing the Arduin Grimoire?


I picked up the first three volumes of the original Arduin Grimoire recently because of the over-the-top energy they exude. How do you approach playing it now? Take the fighter and magic user from OD&D and use the other classes from the Grimoires? Throw whatever classes and stuff that appeals from OD&D and the stuff TSR published for it in their magazines in the blender with the Arduin Grimoire?

I got my start with AD&D, first edition, but I’ve never played OD&D. I have played Swords & Wizardry and Delving Deeper.

Edited: for spelling.
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Scion of Murgen (He/Him)
Take whatever bits grab you and fire your imagination, I think. I believe it's meant to be a potpourri and grab bag of fun ideas. Definitely throwing it all in a blender is very much in the spirit of Arduin.


Bruce Baugh, Writer of Fortune
Carefully, checking for traps, and having your bard imitate the sounds of many small animals scuttling along the walls and ceilings.

I mean, duh. 👍🏼

I would suggest the blender approach. The Arduin Grimoire has got a ton of ideas, some great, some not great, all fairly gonzo. Take the things you like and leave the things you don't.


That makes sense. I'm going to reread OD&D (when the OD&D booklets came out in PDF I printed them all and stapled them into booklets), then write an adventure and after we've got used to OD&D I'll add Arduin.

Arduin was meant, I believe, to overlay OD&D and bring it full bizarre. The planet was a cluster of planar nexi so anything and everything could happen. Sadly I lost my little three long ago. Fun times!


FYI, I think I answered this question one way, briefly, on another forum but I thought of something else, sparked by one of the above posters.

My recollection is that one of the first things we universally adopted from Arduin in our D&D games was the alternative hit point system. We also often used the Arduin tables for attribute generation, with its different die roll combos based on race and gender. I personally adopted the mana system for spellcasting. We all loved Deodanths and used any number of Arduin monsters, but not so much the new spells. I also used the coinage fluff, metals and coin types both, in many campaigns. I do not recall very many of the character classes being used by people, however—that didn’t really come until we started playing The Arcanum rpg in the mid- to late-1980s.


In the 90s while in college I joined an ongoing 1e campaign that had been going on for 20 years. My memory is they used the Arduin xp charts and a flat amount of xp awarded based on success (1,000), in progress (750) or failure (500) for the night's game, with a possible +10 or 20% modifier for very good roleplay and tactics. Over four years of weekly non summer games my magic-user went from 7th to 20th level.

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