Continuing my series on classic boxed sets, we’ve arrived at my favorite (in my collection), the Forgotten Realms box for 2nd Ed. AD&D. Now, it’s important to keep in mind that this is not the old grey box released in 1987 for 1st Ed. AD&D, but rather an updated version for the 2nd edition of the game. If I remember correctly, the Forgotten Realms Adventures hardcover book brought the Realms over to 2nd Edition after the Time of Troubles, albeit in a condensed manner, and this boxed set fleshed it out. Correct me if I’m wrong please!
This boxed set was released in 1993 and retailed for $29.95! Less than the price of most modern role-playing books today. It is credited to Ed Greenwood for his original design of the Forgotten Realms, and Jeff Grubb for the actual design and development of the set. The boxed set assumes the campaign to start at the end of the year 1367 DR, 112 years before the current time in the 4th Ed. Forgotten Realms.
So what’s in the box? Let’s see:
- “A Grand Tour of the Realms” A 128 page book detailing the Heartlands, the Dales, Cormyr and Waterdeep. It also presents information about other locales in Faerun.
- “Running the Realms” This book is meant for the DM, showing us how to create campaigns for the Realms, along with secrets on the many NPC’s and deities that make up the setting. It’s 64 pages long.
- “Shadowdale” presents the city as “the most important town in the Realms” and assumes it as the start of a campaign. It includes an adventure titled “Beneath the Twisted Tower”. This book is 96 pages long.
- 8 Monstrous Compendium pages introducing several monsters of the Realms.
- 6 cardboard color sheets detailing sigils, symbols and glyphs of the Realms.
- 4 poster maps, two of eastern and western Faerun, and two smaller scale maps focusing on the Heartlands. Each pair can be aligned to form a bigger map. The large maps scale at 90 miles to the inch, while the zoomed-in maps scale at 30 miles to the inch.
- Full color poster by artist Clyde Callwell (it’s also the cover to the Forgotten Realms Adventures hardcover book).
- Transparent Hex overlay for the maps. I’ve lost my original copy, but made my own using transparencies and a laser printer.
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