Monday, April 9, 2012

Pure Indulgence

Back in the early '90s, I wasn't playing much D&D anymore. In fact, I was pretty sure that I wasn't ever likely to play D&D ever again. So, in my stupidity, I sold off a fair number of the D&D modules I'd owned since the early 1980s. Among them were all the modules in Gary Gygax magnum opus, the Giants-Drow series. Needless to say, I have come to regret this foolishness greatly, as I consider these modules the finest ever written for Dungeons & Dragons, in particular module D3, Vault of the Drow.

By sheerest good fortune, I recently managed to reacquire modules G1, G2, G3, D1, D2, and even Q1 (which I don't actually like all that much but am happy to have for the sake of completeness). If you look at the module codes in the previous sentence, you'll notice two things. First, I have acquired the original releases of these modules, not the later compilations of them. Second, I am missing D3.

Being the obsessive individual that I am, I want to get my hands on a copy of Vault of the Drow in good condition. But, being the obsessive individual that I am, I also want that copy to match the covers of the other modules in the series I've recently acquired. That means I want D3 with the 1978 pastel cover featuring artwork by Dave Sutherland, not the later one with an Erol Otus illo (awesome though it is). I've been looking around to try and find one without much luck. Most of the copies I've found are either in rather bad shape or, more annoyingly, charge an arm and a leg to ship to Canada, which I've never understood. While I'm quite willing to pay good money for 30+ year-old module in good shape, I'd rather not pay stupid amounts in shipping.

So, if anyone out there in the ether can point me toward a copy of this in good condition that I can buy, I'd appreciate it. I'm not a collector, so the copy needn't be pristine. On the other hand, if I'm going to pay good money for a used gaming product, I'd like it to have all the pages intact and be devoid of writing and other deformations.

Thanks in advance!

17 comments:

  1. Sadly I have no insight for you on your quest. I can at least tell you though that the shipping between the US and Canada is also ridiculous in reverse.

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  2. If nobody comes to your rescue in a more direct fashion, my FLGS has a large selection of older modules. I got my own copy of D3 with the pastel cover there. I'm running a game at the store this evening, and I think they have another copy of Vault with the cover you're looking for, James. I give it a look-see and let you know what condition it's in and what they're asking.

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  3. http://www.nobleknight.com/ProductDetailSearch.asp_Q_ProductID_E_2147411165_A_InventoryID_E_2147800616
     
    Nobleknight.com has one.  Overpriced to be sure, but it's there.  They have other printings for less, but I think this is the only copy of the Pastel cover.
     
    Don't know about Amazon.com, but they might have it.

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  4.  I don't mind mildly over-priced if the module's in good condition. Thanks for the heads-up.

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  5. Peter V. Dell'OrtoApril 9, 2012 at 11:53 AM

    Amazon.com has 17 used copies listed, in various prices:

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/offer-listing/0935696075/

    Also, there are a few on eBay. I was just looking at that module's prices this past week.

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  6. Sure thing.  I'm always up for feeding the addiction.
    I also did a bit more hunting on that site.  They have a few 2-5th printings for under $20 (in various states of quality) that have the pastel cover, but it's a slightly different shade than the first printing.

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  7. Shipping between Canada and the US got ridiculous when the USPS stopped shipping ground between the two countries. Everything is air - thus the 200% increase we saw a few years back.

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  8. For some weird reason when I was a kid I bought only G1 and D3 (both the pastel covers). I guess they were the only ones at the game store. 

    Don't think they are in decent enough shape, however.

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  9. A lot of the shipping costs between the US and Canada (at least coming from the US side) is that you pretty much have to use Priority Mail to ship across the border, or there is no protection for the seller.  If you send First Class and something happens, Paypal/eBay/Amazon will just tell you "too bad; so sad."

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  10. If you haven't found one come July, I'd be happy to pick one up at Dexcon for you. There are usually a number of dealers with large stocks of older modules at very reasonable prices.

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  11.  Oh really? I may need to prevail upon you to look for some other stuff for me, then. =)

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  12. I'll check at my FLGS as well.  They regularly have used TSR modules for sale.

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  13.  Happy to accommodate you, James!

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  14. Yeah, I think that there was something going around in the early 1990's. Your story sounds painfully familiar to me. Sold off my D&D and AD&D collection to a local hobby shop for some beer money. Gah! 

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  15. Here is another condition  at Noble Knight for a little less:

    http://www.nobleknight.com/ProductDetailSearch.asp_Q_ProductID_E_1721_A_InventoryID_E_2147843166

    Looks like they'll ship to Canada as USPS First-Class Mail International Parcel for about $9 according to their calculator.

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  16. Sorry for the delay on this. MY FLGS does have another copy of D3, but it's missing one of the map pages and has penciled notes inside. There's also a sticker mark on the cover, making it less that desirable. He'll have some more mono-cover modules in in a week or two and I'll see if there's a better copy mixed in with that collection should you not find alternate venues to obtain one.

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  17. Hey, I have a question about the Drow...


    I remember waaayyyyy back as an early "Munchkin" gamer reading these D&D stuff.  And some of the early modules had that the Drow were cursed with black skin by the gods for their horrible evil acts and banished underground...  Now, I'm sure TSR/Wizards is going "uh....  Retcon...  Uh...  Not listening..." due to modern PC sentiment.


    Who cares that the now totally good character Drizzt is no longer a drow but a non-dark elf...


    But I remember reading it from a module in a used bookstore, I could KICK myself for not buying.  Think it was actually a character guide of pre-made characters and some adventure ideas where the Drow part came in, but even had Bigby before he became a background legendary Archmage/?Nameless one?

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