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In 1979, Boot Hill was completely revised from the original little booklet released in 1975. The 2nd edition sported an orange box of the same dimensions as other TSR box sets. Inside was a 34-page rule book, large double-sided folding map (The region around Fort Griffin and Promise City and a town map on the reverse side), and a small sheet of 70 counters.






This edition of Boot Hill was in print for several years (above is a page from the 1981 TSR Catalog), perhaps until the short-lived Remington cover box was released in 1984. So it stands to reason that some changes would happen over that span of time. I'd been vaguely aware for some time that there were some minor variations in the early and later printings of the box set.  But now I have a couple of sets to put side-by-side.






The box top and bottom lids have no graphical differences I could see. The coloring is mostly the same, but the surface has a different texture (the later print is more smooth). Inside it's clear they went to a different style of box, the earlier set's graphics being a sheet glued onto a brown box, and the later set with graphics printed directly on the paperboard. I see both types of boxes equally often in the shop, so I'd reckon that TSR stayed with the earlier type box for some time; it's not rare.






The front of the book looks the same to me, save for a difference in tinting.






The back covers also appear the same, except the prices have been omitted from later printings.





Inside front and back covers show a clear difference: The early print has no title page, nor the detachable character sheet in the back. So, the early printing is only 34 pages, not 36. (That 1981 TSR catalog claims 36 pages.) Otherwise, there were no obvious differences on a flip-through, but I didn't do a page-by-page, word-for-word analysis. I believe the early printing rulebook was phased out relatively early on. Just taking an unscientific poll of the 9 BH books in our boneyard, only one was this early printing.





The counter sheets are clearly different. The early sheet uses a thicker paperboard, and later sheets a thinner, less substantial material.

I couldn't see a difference in the maps. And the dice? I don't know how long the original, famously-crude TSR dice persisted. Boot Hill sets almost never have their dice anymore, so it's hard to draw a pattern.

I'll certainly be paying more attention to Boot Hill sets in the future!

-Wayne

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