Stephen Chenault and his brother Davis co-founded Troll Lord Games with Mac Golden in 1999. After designing many supplements and adventures in the D20 boom, they published Castles & Crusades in 2004. They served as Gary Gygax’s primary publisher in the last years of his life, publishing Lejendary Adventure, Gygaxian Fantasy Worlds, and other book lines. In addition to C&C, Troll Lord publishes the Amazing Adventures line, as well as adventures for D&D 5e.
Castles & Crusades is basically a top-notch homebrew D&D variant writ large, with a modern approach to the Old School aesthetic. It has all the AD&D classes and stats and saving throws; in fact, it’s easy to convert Gygax-era TSR modules to C&C on the fly, in realtime right at your gaming table. But C&C is no retroclone; its SIEGE Engine uses a single unified task-resolution mechanic for nearly everything. It’s effortless to house-rule, and to adjudicate almost any situation on the spot. C&C fans talk with admiration about how the rules “just get out of the way.” If anything, it’s a retroclone of a hypothetical “AD&D 2.5″ — a loving and skillful streamlining of AD&D 2e.
This bargain-priced collection provided everything you need for a complete Castles & Crusades campaign. Our Player’s Collection included four titles (retail value $47) as DRM-free .PDF ebooks:
- Players Handbook 6th Printing (retail price $20): The complete full-color rulebook with the adaptable, rules-light SIEGE Engine system.
- Rune Lore (retail $20): Three schools of runic magic, 40 new spells, the Rune Mark character class, and a lengthy guide to the Gottland campaign setting.
- Arms & Armor (retail $7): A huge range of weapons and armor from Europe’s early medieval period, all with complete C&C stats.
- After Winter’s Dark – A World of Aihrde Primer (retail $10): An updated 96-page extract from the Codex of Aihrde campaign sourcebook. This primer debuted in this offer.
- Castle Keepers Guide (retail $35): The massive, indispensable 352-page gamemastering resource.
- Classic Monsters (retail $20): C&C stats and writeups adapted from fantasy roleplaying’s earliest sources, like Monster Manual II and the Fiend Folio.
- Engineering Dungeons (retail $7) and Engineering Castles (retail $7): Two fun and comprehensive collections of tables that let you generate complete random labyrinths and structures.
- A Lion in the Ropes (retail $4): One of the earliest and best-regarded D20 adventures, updated for the C&C rules. (1-4 characters, levels 4-8)