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Ever curious about the notches you see on some AD&D modules?
Many classic AD&D (and some D&D modules) have small notches cut into the upper spine. Probably done with a bandsaw in large stacks I'd surmise.
For the most part, these modules were overstock, sold in the TSR 10th Anniversary combo Bonus Packs, which were sets of 2 to 4 modules shrinkwrapped and sold as a unit. Gaming companies would sell these multi-packs, intended to both dispose of extra inventory and pass extra value to their retail customers.
It didn't take long for Friendly Local Game Stores to realize they could open these sets, and sell the adventures separately for a significant profit. (In a conversation I had with Dave Nilsen of GDW, he mentioned they had the same problem.) So, it's a safe bet that the notching was TSR's attempt at discouraging game stores from parting out the sets, and their bonus packs consist entirely of notched modules.
Ironically, the bonus packs are quite rare and valuable today (since the vast majority of buyers immediately opened their sets).
The Art of the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Fantasy Game
"Enter the realm of dragons, warriors, wizards and other wonders in this splendid collection of fantasy art.
The Art of the ADVANCED DUNGEONS & DRAGONS® Fantasy Game features the art of Clyde Caldwell, Jeff Easley, Larry Elmore, Fred Fields, Keith Parkinson, and many other well-known fantasy artists."
1989 ... 128 pages ... TSR 8443 ... ISBN 0880386053
Days of the Dragon: 1982 Dungeons & Dragons Fantasy Art Calendar
Calendar features full-page art from the artists of TSR's early days, including Larry Elmore (white dragon), Jim Holloway (crystal dragon), and Erol Otus (blue dragon).
1981 ... ISBN 0935696741
1987 Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Calendar: Dragonlance
Clyde Caldwell, Keith Parkinson, Jeff Butler, Jeff Easley, Larry Elmore.
1986 ... TSR 8887 ... ISBN 0880382880
1988 Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Calendar: Dragonlance
Clyde Caldwell, Keith Parkinson, Jeff Butler, Jeff Easley, Larry Elmore.
1987 ... TSR 8888 ... ISBN 0880384611
1989 Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Calendar: Forgotten Realms
1988 ... TSR 8889 ... ISBN 0880385804
1990 Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Calendar: Forgotten Realms
Jeff Butler, Clyde Caldwell, Jeff Easley, Larry Elmore, Jim Holloway.
1989 ... TSR 8890 ... ISBN 0880387068
1995 Dragonlance and Other Worlds Calendar
Art by Larry Elmore, Jeff Easley, Paul Jaquays, Fred Fields, and Bruce Eagle.
1994 ... ISBN 1560768495
LJN official AD&D toy figures
Iconic D&D characters (Strongheart, Warduke, more) appeared as a toy figure line by LJN. Some would appear as guest stars in the D&D TV show (1983-1985).
The full list of characters (drawn from the D&D module XL1:
* Strongheart ("Good Paladin") * Ringlerun ("Good Wizard") * Elkhorn ("Good Dwarf Fighter") * Mercion ("Good Cleric Female") * Peralay ("Fighter Mage Elf") * Figgen ("Halfling") * Molliver (female lawful thief) * Hawkler ("Good Ranger") * Deeth ("Good Fighter") * Bowmarc ("Good Crusader") * Valkeer ("Good Norseman") * Grimsword ("Evil Knight") * Zargash ("Evil Cleric") * Kelek ("Evil Sorcerer") * Warduke ("Evil Fighter") * Skylla ("Evil Magic-User") * Zorgar ("Evil Barbarian") * Drex ("Evil Warrior") * Zarak ("Evil Half-Orc Assassin").
Kelek: Evil Sorcerer
"As a class the Evil Sorcerer is capable of casting powerful magical spells to further his cruel ways. While Sorcerers cannot use weapons other than daggers, darts, or staffs, they have a large number of terrible spells that they employ to win the day for them. Evil Sorcerers are constantly fighting the forces of Law and Order for dominance in the lands where they live."
1983 ... LJN 1401
Warduke: Evil Fighter
"As a class this character is able to meet any physical challenge. Fighters use all types of weapons but their favorites are magical swords. An Evil fighter's purpose in life is to become strong and rule over all that he encounters.
Those forces of good that fight such men soon learn never to surrender to them and never to show them weakness."
1983 ... LJN 1402
Zarak: Evil Half-Orc Assassin
"The assassin's primary tools are the poisoned dagger, the stab in the dark, the disguise, and the lesser skills of the thief. The most feared assassin is the half human-half orc one. Whose strength and cunning are that of a vile monster with the intelligence and appearance of a human. Wanting only to profit from assassination after assassination, this being is able to appear harmless or bold and brave. No wonder they are the most feared of enemies in the dungeons and villages of the fantasy world."
1983 ... LJN 1403
Ringlerun: Good Wizard
"Wanting to help mankind above all things, this magical human has a wide array of spells at his command. Believing that the power of magic was meant for maintaining law and order, this person will always do his utmost to help the needy and defend the weak and helpless. Wizards have been known and feared through the ages because of their great magical powers. The forces of evil and destruction must often run in fear when facing such a man."
1983 ... LJN 1409
Strongheart: Good Paladin
"The most honest and brave of all the types of fighters, this human desires nothing more than a good fight against evil and its ways. Riding a proud charger, this warrior's sword and his good right arm serve to protect the ways of the weak and deserving.
Because of his honest ways he can instantly tell evil wherever he finds it. He can also heal the sick and wounded and stand and fight evil foes that would make others run in fear."
1983 ... LJN 1447 ... UPC 023582014456
AD&D Fantasy Collector Cards1991 Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Fantasy Collector Cards
"Monsters, Nonplayer Characters, Magical Items, and Their Stats. 36 Packs, 16 Cards per Pack."
1991 ... TSR 1063 ... ISBN 1560760818
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