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Arcanum 30th Anniversary Edition
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Arcanum 30th Anniversary Edition

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[ Current PDF: Release 1.3 ][ Current Print: Release 1.3 ]

In the mid-1980s, a small publishing company released a genuinely original role-playing game. While most other companies were releasing clones of the larger press games, or generic systemless supplements, ARCANUM took a bold, fresh look at the infinite possibilities of fantasy gaming.

ARCANUM has unconventional races, more than 30 professions, dozens of skills, a way to track fame, and an approach to alchemy and magic that has not been equaled in the more than three decades since its initial release.

The 30th Anniversary Edition of this classic is an evolution, not a revolution. It cleans-up, modernizes, and re-organizes text, fills gaps, and fleshes out concepts.

Re-discover the wonder of ARCANUM.


The errata file for all releases of Arcanum can be found at http://zila-games.com/arcanum/

 
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Discussions (11)
Customer avatar
Matthew S March 16, 2019 11:10 pm UTC
I think it is fair to say that I love the original book right up to the point of obsession. It's the first game book that I bought out of sheer, unholy desire. I used to pour over the ads in Dragon magazine. I tried to purchase the rights - with Steve Secchi's blessing - when Morrigan Press was going under. I tried to work with Khepera when they got it instead (Jerry Grayson is a total class act, by the way, and even though I couldn't agree with the direction that he took the game, I still think he is an awesome dude, as well as the other guys who wrote for their version). I have obsessed over the minutiae to a truly unhealthy degree (e.g. my reviews of the both the Morrigan and the Khepera editions over at RPG.net.

And...I totally missed the KS on this.

So, given all that, could you tell me what has been "cleaned-up" such that I would get this?

P.S. The fact that you got to do this thing fills me with envy.
Customer avatar
K. David L March 30, 2019 3:05 pm UTC
PUBLISHER
Wow. Sorry to hear of the woe you have had with this product. :)

As far as what was cleaned up...

...corrections of typos, tense, grammar, etc.
...much of the original layout was not conducive to readability
...the material has been organized into logical chapters
...some spells were missing information (duration, range, etc.)
...and so on...

In addition, some small changes have been made to mitigate a few metagaming issues that often crop up (e.g., the highly trained fighter build with 2+ to hit at all times), and a few pet peeves of mine with the system were straightened out. Overall, not much has changed from the 2nd/3rd edition of the game. But I personally believe this to be the best edition that has ever been released. But that would probably be my personal biases speaking. :)
Customer avatar
David G March 12, 2019 6:57 am UTC
Would like to see a pdf preview! Also interested in PoD
Customer avatar
K. David L March 30, 2019 3:06 pm UTC
PUBLISHER
PDF preview is supposed to be there.... I will check on that.

POD is coming very, very soon.
Customer avatar
John R March 10, 2019 9:39 pm UTC
PURCHASER
It isn't letting me download the file: there's no link...
Customer avatar
John R March 10, 2019 9:53 pm UTC
PURCHASER
(I'm also one of the kickstarter backers, so I'd really like to get my copy...)
Customer avatar
John R March 12, 2019 9:38 pm UTC
PURCHASER
DriveThru fixed it. But, now I have to ask:

Why'd you drop the Druas from this edition?
Customer avatar
K. David L March 14, 2019 12:45 pm UTC
PUBLISHER
The Druas became a major part of Talislanta -- Sechi's other major RPG. So he asked, when I purchased the rights, to maintain ownership of that one element of the game.
Customer avatar
February 21, 2019 10:17 pm UTC
PURCHASER
One of my favorites. Have enjoyed it and the Atlantis setting. I even liked and used the Compleat Series by Bard Games which was added as a supplement my AD&D 1e game.
Customer avatar
K. David L February 26, 2019 4:47 am UTC
PUBLISHER
Same here. Love this material... the primary reason I purchased the rights. I hope you like this edition.
Customer avatar
Herbert N February 20, 2019 7:44 pm UTC
Will we be seeing the other two books or any other additional material?
Customer avatar
K. David L February 26, 2019 4:46 am UTC
PUBLISHER
The other two books are owned by Khepera publishing... so sadly, no. They have allowed me the opportunity to include a Bestiary chapter in this volume so as to make this a complete RPG. Original material... that may come about. We will see how well this sells before I make a final decision on that. :)
Customer avatar
Robert G February 19, 2019 10:35 pm UTC
Has anything changed about how non-proficiency penalties are handled? In previous editions, without at least a +1 bonus to hit, you had zero chance of landing a blow with a weapon with which you were not proficient.
Customer avatar
K. David L February 20, 2019 12:55 am UTC
PUBLISHER
An unmodified roll of 20 always hits; an unmodified roll of 1 always misses. So, with no skill, you have a 5% chance to hit with a weapon with which you are not proficient.
Customer avatar
Robert G July 28, 2019 8:02 am UTC
Are unarmed attacks still subject to the nonproficiency penalty? This is one of several areas where I wondered if the published Arcanum reflected all the house rules and rulings of the original authors.
Customer avatar
John P. H February 15, 2019 5:21 pm UTC
Although I have moved away from games with character classes, I still have great memories of playing The Arcanum back in the 80's. While it was a D&D-clone, it did allow a lot of options, like adding skills from outside a class and being able to make potions and magic items, that made it more fun. Also, the combat system was quick and also interactive, with options. We still have three or four copies of the game on the shelf.
Customer avatar
K. David L February 19, 2019 5:42 pm UTC
PUBLISHER
I have the first edition of the Arcanum, I have the second edition trilogy as well as the oddball book Atlantis: The Lost World. I have the Death's Head edition trilogy... I think it is fair to say that I love this game.
Customer avatar
Mitch W February 15, 2019 1:34 pm UTC
I remember the Arcanum fondly. I think I have tried to implement the 'witch hunter' class in every game I have played over the last 30 years.
Customer avatar
K. David L February 19, 2019 5:41 pm UTC
PUBLISHER
And so did Vin Diesel, it would seem... :)
Customer avatar
Jeremy R February 15, 2019 6:45 am UTC
I own the physical books for the Atlantean Trilogy, and while interesting, it's hard to claim they are genuinely original, it's basically a D&D clone.
Customer avatar
K. David L February 19, 2019 5:40 pm UTC
PUBLISHER
Obviously, I disagree. :)
Customer avatar
Jeremy H February 20, 2019 3:16 am UTC
Arcanum was a bit ahead of its time even though it did draw on DnD of the era a bit. The use of Ability Scores as Saving Throws is a great example.
Customer avatar
K. David L March 01, 2019 9:23 pm UTC
PUBLISHER
Yes. That and a skill system, the alchemical rules, the unified advancement table, etc...
Customer avatar
Jeremy H February 15, 2019 1:50 am UTC
Very interesting! How's the art looking for this edition?
Customer avatar
K. David L February 19, 2019 5:40 pm UTC
PUBLISHER
Cory did a wonderful job on the art. This is the best looking edition of the game, if I do say so myself.
Customer avatar
Jeremy H February 20, 2019 3:18 am UTC
I really liked the Bill Sienkiewicz art in the monster book. Were you guys able to acquire rights to use it? Please consider posting an extended preview or even just an art collection sample. :^)
Customer avatar
K. David L February 26, 2019 5:28 am UTC
PUBLISHER
You can get some art previews at the Facebook page.
Customer avatar
K. David L February 26, 2019 6:38 am UTC
PUBLISHER
https://www.facebook.com/groups/1185543438134068/?ref=bookmarks
Customer avatar
George F February 14, 2019 8:01 pm UTC
Any chance of a PoD version?
Customer avatar
K. David L February 19, 2019 5:39 pm UTC
PUBLISHER
Yes. Keep waiting.... it is coming.
Customer avatar
christopher L H March 04, 2019 6:08 pm UTC
PURCHASER
I too have owned a few versions of this game Atlantis the lost world was a great antediluvian world it went where the medieval world could not go. I do not currently like the sword and sorcery version , I liked the elves and dwarves and other races from the other game of Talasorian world and how the two kind reference one anther. I had the Bard games version before the fire took my whole library in 2011. so a POD. would be wonderful. I am glade I stumbled across this posting. I do not suppose you could rescue the Atlantis from the gammy paws of the current overlord of bad taste and ignorance?
Customer avatar
christopher H April 25, 2019 8:23 am UTC
I WANT TO APOLOGIZE RIGHT HERE AND NOW. the current publisher of Atlantis the second age is not over lord of bad taste. ….. there is that better well you please remove that wand from my head? whew some people are so sensitive. now really I do not personally know the owner of the current game but if he let you print this then I like him for that alone. I own all editions of Atlantis and I do not like much of the omni system one or the newest. I know dnd clone stuff but in the day of the late eighties I know a guy name Billy who tried to get us to play one night. but I was so ill I could not follow. But later I keep finding this game and system. but not only can the attributes be used as saves but they can be used as passive score for game master roll against to for a goblin to sneak by. or to catch some one by surprise. this is a very fine game.
Customer avatar
K. David L May 01, 2019 12:51 am UTC
PUBLISHER
Khepara Publishing owns the setting (The Lexicon) and the monster book (The Bestiary). I own the rpg system (The Arcanum). He and I have a gentleman's agreement covering those things that overlap. So all is good.

Unfortunately, he is not about to sell the setting and monster book. I sincerely wish I could have gotten those. But them's the breaks.

And I agree... this is a fine system. :)
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Product Information
Silver seller
Author(s)
Artist(s)
Pages
366
Publisher Stock #
A30-001
File Size:
46.72 MB
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File Last Updated:
April 20, 2019
This title was added to our catalog on February 14, 2019.
Publisher
ZiLa Games
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