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Oriental Adventures

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For the 3rd edition book, see Oriental Adventures (3rd edition)

Oriental Adventures was written by Gary Gygax, David "Zeb" Cook, and François Marcela-Froideval, and published in 1985 by TSR for use with the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 1st Edition rules. The book's early chapters introduce ten character classes and three races that Oriental campaigns use in place of D&D's original classes and races. Further chapters provide spells, monsters, magic items, and other rules used in Oriental campaigns.

The original Oriental Adventures introduced two major innovations to the AD&D system. Although previous TSR publications (such as Deities & Demigods) had touched on using non-European settings for the game, Oriental Adventures was the first official supplement entirely devoted to roleplaying in a non-Western setting. Oriental Adventures also introduced a new game mechanic to Dungeons & Dragons, as the first official supplement to include rules for nonweapon proficiencies.[2] Both non-weapon proficiencies and non-European settings were explored in more detail in 2nd edition AD&D rules.

The fantasy setting introduced in the original Oriental Adventures is Kara-Tur. TSR went on to produce eight adventures using the Oriental Adventures rules and the Kara-Tur setting.

Gary Gygax intended to incorporate the material from Oriental Adventures into revised versions of the Player's Handbook and Dungeon Master's Guide,[3] but left TSR shortly after announcing the project.[4] Little, if any, material from Oriental Adventures was incorporated into the AD&D 2nd edition core books, and Oriental Adventures itself was never revised for the 2nd edition. However, the recent release of 5th Edition Dungeons and Dragons contains many references to this campaign setting and includes rules for mapping the differences (nunchuku = clubs with strings, etc) as well as providing the Monk class using many of the original martial arts rules found in Oriental Adventures.


  1. Shannon Appelcline. Oriental Adventures (1e). Dungeon Masters Guild. Retrieved on 2014-02-11.
  2. David Cook (December 1985). “Oriental opens new vistas”. In Kim Mohan ed. Dragon #104 (TSR, Inc.), pp. 20–21.
  3. Gary Gygax (November 1985). “The future of the game”. In Kim Mohan ed. Dragon #103 (TSR, Inc.), pp. 8–10.
  4. Gary Gygax (June 1987). “From the Sorcerer's Scroll”. In Roger E. Moore ed. Dragon #122 (TSR, Inc.), p. 40.

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