Dungeons & Dragons

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Dungeons & Dragons is a fantasy tabletop role-playing game (RPG) originally designed by Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson, and first published in 1974 by Tactical Studies Rules, Inc. (TSR). The game has been published by Wizards of the Coast (now a subsidiary of Hasbro) since 1997.

It was derived from miniature wargames with a variation of the Chainmail game serving as the initial rule system. D&D's publication is commonly recognized as the beginning of modern role-playing games and the role-playing game industry.

Why It Rocks

  1. Addicting an extremely fun gameplay which can be played with many friends and other people.
  2. The customization options for a campaign are limitless.
  3. A Dungeon Master is in charge of the session's setting, dungeons, enemies and bosses the players have to face against, etc.
  4. Many tournaments are being held every year.
  5. Multiple editions add new rules, character classes, enemy races, etc.
  6. Many classic RPG enemies, such as the Lich, Owlbears, Beholders and Mindflayers were created by D&D.
  7. It also has many elements from Lord of the Rings. The Halflings, Treants and Balor are based on the Hobbits, Treebeards and Balrog.
  8. Tons and tons of classic monsters, hundreds of campaigns and setting give D&D a huge variety of gameplay styles.
  9. Many modern RPG elements and mechanics were first implemented by this series.
  10. D&D is a thinking man’s game. You are often presented with challenging scenarios and have to come up with a solution given the resources at your immediate disposal.
  11. Both tactical elements and team work are required to solve the game´s challenges.
  12. Many Core Rulebooks, Playing Manuals and Monster Manuals.
  13. D&D uses polyhedral dice to resolve random events. These are abbreviated by a 'd' followed by the number of sides.
  14. A typical Dungeons & Dragons game consists of an "adventure", which is roughly equivalent to a single story.
  15. The Dungeon Master can either design an adventure on their own, or follow one of the many pre-made adventures that have been published throughout the history of Dungeons & Dragons.
  16. Multiple miniature figures add more realism to the campaigns.
  17. A regular campaign can take hours to complete.

Reception

As of 2004, Dungeons & Dragons remained the best-known and best-selling role-playing game, with an estimated 20 million people having played the game and more than US$1 billion in book and equipment sales.

The game has been supplemented by many pre-made adventures as well as commercial campaign settings suitable for use by regular gaming groups. Dungeons & Dragons is known beyond the game for other D&D-branded products and references in popular culture. The game has won multiple awards and has been translated into many languages beyond the original English.

Impact, Legacy and Controversy

Dungeons & Dragons was the first modern role-playing game and it established many of the conventions that have dominated the genre. Particularly notable are the use of dice as a game mechanic, character record sheets, use of numerical attributes and gamemaster-centered group dynamics.

The various editions of Dungeons & Dragons have won many Origins Awards, including All Time Best Roleplaying Rules of 1977, Best Roleplaying Rules of 1989, and Best Roleplaying Game of 2000 for the three flagship editions of the game.

Both Dungeons & Dragons and Advanced Dungeons & Dragons are Origins Hall of Fame Games inductees as they were deemed sufficiently distinct to merit separate inclusion on different occasions. The independent Games magazine placed Dungeons & Dragons on their Games 100 list from 1980 through 1983, then entered the game into the magazine's Hall of Fame in 1984.

From the 1980s–1990s, Dungeons & Dragons received negative publicity, mostly from religious people, who believed that the game promoted Satanism, witchcraft, rape and murder. It was also blamed for several suicides, the most notable of which was a Michigan State University student named James Dallas Egbert III who went missing and later committed suicide. The events were heavily fictionalized in a novel called Mazes and Monsters, which was later made into a TV movie in 1982 starring Tom Hanks. Another incident involved a woman named Patricia Pulling who formed a group called Bothered About Dungeons & Dragons (BADD) after her son committed suicide, which she blamed on Dungeons & Dragons. She tried filing a lawsuit against TSR, the then-publishers of the game at the time, which was thrown out. Many of her claims were disproved by reporters, especially Michael A. Stackpole, who demonstrated that gamers had lower suicide rates than non-gamers. Pulling continued advocating against Dungeons & Dragons until her death in 1997, after which BADD disbanded.