In 1989, TSR released the long-awaited Second Edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons. It was to be evolutionary, and not revolutionary. But AD&D 2nd ed definitely introduced some new ideas.
For example, the original trinity of hardcover rulebooks (PHB DMG MM) was itself altered, replacing the Monster Manual with a Monstrous Compendium three ring binder.
Also in 1989, TSR released the first of their Complete Handbook series. The Brown Books were surely intended to draw in players as paying customers. These Player splatbooks would each focus on a class, with background and optional additions to the game rules. (There were also Blue and Green Complete Guides for the Dungeon Master. Visit my RPG reference site page for more on the whole series.)
The Handbooks proved to be quite popular, remaining in print for years, until the end of 1996, when the company ran out of operating cash.
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