This article originally appeared in Pyramid #22
Fritz Leiber's Lankhmar: Rules and Campaign Setting
Published by TSR, Inc.
Written by Shane Lacy Hensley
In 1985, TSR's Lankhmar setting debuted with Lankhmar: City of Adventure, its core sourcebook. Over the next ten years, about a dozen supplements followed, including a repackaged but essentially identical City of Adventure book in 1993. While some of these supplements featured fine writing (especially by the late Nigel Findley), the general quality level was low and the presentation was hampered by a low-key approach to layout and art that was not entirely successful at capturing the gritty atmosphere of the setting. To make matters worse, the world of Nehwon did not match up very well with typical AD&D campaigns. For instance, there are no clerics as defined by the rules: the gods of Nehwon do not grant spells to their priests. The designers attempted to resolve this by having a chapter of conversion notes at the back of the book, but these didn't seem to stick much and subsequent Lankhmar products seemed scarcely distinguishable from traditional AD&D.
All this is changed with the new boxed set, which has taken the best of the old material and rethought several key areas to produce an outstanding product. The new boxed set consists of a 96-page DM's book describing Nehwon and Lankhmar, a 32-page general rules booklet for all players (more on this later), a 64-page adventure to introduce players to Nehwon, a quick reference card for players, and a 17" . . .
This article originally appeared in the second volume of Pyramid. See the current Pyramid website for more information.
Article publication date: November 1, 1996
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