Dungeons & Dragons
Dungeons & Dragons (commonly abbreviated as D&D or DnD) is a fantasy tabletop role-playing game (RPG) originally designed by Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson. It was first published in 1974 by Tactical Studies Rules, Inc. (TSR). It has been published by Wizards of the Coast (now a subsidiary of Hasbro) since 1997. The game was derived from miniature wargames, with a variation of the 1971 game Chainmail 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.
|Designed by||Gary Gygax|
|Published by||TSR (1974–1997), Wizards of the Coast (1997–present)|
|Systems||Dungeons & Dragons|
d20 System (3rd Edition)
|Random chance||Dice rolling|
|Skills required||Role-playing, improvisation, tactics, arithmetic|
D&D departs from traditional wargaming by allowing each player to create their own character to play instead of a military formation. These characters embark upon imaginary adventures within a fantasy setting. A Dungeon Master (DM) serves as the game's referee and storyteller, while maintaining the setting in which the adventures occur, and playing the role of the inhabitants of the game world. The characters form a party and they interact with the setting's inhabitants and each other. Together they solve dilemmas, engage in battles, explore, and gather treasure and knowledge. In the process, the characters earn experience points (XP) in order to rise in levels, and become increasingly powerful over a series of separate gaming sessions.
The early success of D&D led to a proliferation of similar game systems. Despite the competition, D&D has remained the market leader in the role-playing game industry. In 1977, the game was split into two branches: the relatively rules-light game system of basic Dungeons & Dragons, and the more structured, rules-heavy game system of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (abbreviated as AD&D). AD&D 2nd Edition was published in 1989. In 2000, a new system was released as D&D 3rd edition, continuing the edition numbering from AD&D; a revised version 3.5 was released in June 2003. These 3rd edition rules formed the basis of the d20 System, which is available under the Open Game License (OGL) for use by other publishers. D&D 4th edition was released in June 2008. The 5th edition of D&D, the most recent, was released during the second half of 2014.
In 2004, D&D remained the best-known, and best-selling, role-playing game in the US, with an estimated 20 million people having played the game, and more than US$1 billion in book and equipment sales worldwide. The year 2017 had "the most number of players in its history—12 million to 15 million in North America alone". D&D 5th edition sales "were up 41 percent in 2017 from the year before, and soared another 52 percent in 2018, the game's biggest sales year yet". The game has been supplemented by many pre-made adventures, as well as commercial campaign settings suitable for use by regular gaming groups. D&D is known beyond the game itself for other D&D-branded products, references in popular culture, and some of the controversies that have surrounded it, particularly a moral panic in the 1980s falsely linking it to Satanism and suicide. The game has won multiple awards and has been translated into many languages.
Dungeons & Dragons is a structured, yet fundamentally open-ended role-playing game. It is normally played indoors with the participants seated around a tabletop. Typically, one player takes on the role of Dungeon Master (DM) while the others each control a single character, representing an individual in a fictional setting. When working together as a group, the player characters (PCs) are often described as a "party" of adventurers, with each member often having their own area of specialty which contributes to the success of the whole. During the course of play, each player directs the actions of their character and their interactions with other characters in the game. This activity is performed through the verbal impersonation of the characters by the players, while employing a variety of social and other useful cognitive skills, such as logic, basic mathematics and imagination. A game often continues over a series of meetings to complete a single adventure, and longer into a series of related gaming adventures, called a "campaign".
The results of the party's choices and the overall storyline for the game are determined by the DM according to the rules of the game and the DM's interpretation of those rules. The DM selects and describes the various non-player characters (NPCs) that the party encounters, the settings in which these interactions occur, and the outcomes of those encounters based on the players' choices and actions. Encounters often take the form of battles with "monsters" – a generic term used in D&D to describe potentially hostile beings such as animals, aberrant beings, or mythical creatures. The game's extensive rules – which cover diverse subjects such as social interactions, magic use, combat, and the effect of the environment on PCs – help the DM to make these decisions. The DM may choose to deviate from the published rules or make up new ones if they feel it is necessary.
The only items required to play the game are the rulebooks, a character sheet for each player, and a number of polyhedral dice. Many players also use miniature figures on a grid map as a visual aid, particularly during combat. Some editions of the game presume such usage. Many optional accessories are available to enhance the game, such as expansion rulebooks, pre-designed adventures and various campaign settings.
Before the game begins, each player creates their player character and records the details (described below) on a character sheet. First, a player determines their character's ability scores, which consist of Strength, Constitution, Dexterity, Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma. Each edition of the game has offered differing methods of determining these scores. The player then chooses a race (species) such as human or elf, a character class (occupation) such as fighter or wizard, an alignment (a moral and ethical outlook), and other features to round out the character's abilities and backstory, which have varied in nature through differing editions.
During the game, players describe their PCs' intended actions, such as punching an opponent or picking a lock, and converse with the DM, who then describes the result or response. Trivial actions, such as picking up a letter or opening an unlocked door, are usually automatically successful. The outcomes of more complex or risky actions are determined by rolling dice. Different polyhedral dice are used for different actions, such as a twenty-sided die to see whether a hit was made in combat, but an eight-sided die to determine how much damage was dealt. Factors contributing to the outcome include the character's ability scores, skills and the difficulty of the task. In circumstances where a character does not have control of an event, such as when a trap or magical effect is triggered or a spell is cast, a saving throw can be used to determine whether the resulting damage is reduced or avoided. In this case the odds of success are influenced by the character's class, levels and ability scores.
As the game is played, each PC changes over time and generally increases in capability. Characters gain (or sometimes lose) experience, skills and wealth, and may even alter their alignment or gain additional character classes. The key way characters progress is by earning experience points (XP), which happens when they defeat an enemy or accomplish a difficult task. Acquiring enough XP allows a PC to advance a level, which grants the character improved class features, abilities and skills. XP can be lost in some circumstances, such as encounters with creatures that drain life energy, or by use of certain magical powers that come with an XP cost.
Hit points (HP) are a measure of a character's vitality and health and are determined by the class, level and constitution of each character. They can be temporarily lost when a character sustains wounds in combat or otherwise comes to harm, and loss of HP is the most common way for a character to die in the game. Death can also result from the loss of key ability scores or character levels. When a PC dies, it is often possible for the dead character to be resurrected through magic, although some penalties may be imposed as a result. If resurrection is not possible or not desired, the player may instead create a new PC to resume playing the game.
Adventures and campaigns
A typical Dungeons & Dragons game consists of an "adventure", which is roughly equivalent to a single story. The DM can either design an original adventure, or follow one of the many pre-made adventures (also known as "modules") that have been published throughout the history of Dungeons & Dragons. Published adventures typically include a background story, illustrations, maps and goals for PCs to achieve. Some include location descriptions and handouts. Although a small adventure entitled "Temple of the Frog" was included in the Blackmoor rules supplement in 1975, the first stand-alone D&D module published by TSR was 1978's Steading of the Hill Giant Chief, written by Gygax.
A linked series of adventures is commonly referred to as a "campaign". The locations where these adventures occur, such as a city, country, planet or an entire fictional universe, are referred to as "campaign settings" or "world". D&D settings are based in various fantasy genres and feature different levels and types of magic and technology. Popular commercially published campaign settings for Dungeons & Dragons include Greyhawk, Dragonlance, Forgotten Realms, Mystara, Spelljammer, Ravenloft, Dark Sun, Planescape, Birthright, and Eberron.
In addition to first-party campaigns and modules, two campaigns based on popular culture have been created. The first, based on Stranger Things, was released in May 2019. A campaign based on the Rick and Morty vs. Dungeons and Dragons comic book series was later released in November 2019.
Alternatively, DMs may develop their own fictional worlds to use as campaign settings.
The wargames from which Dungeons & Dragons evolved used miniature figures to represent combatants. D&D initially continued the use of miniatures in a fashion similar to its direct precursors. The original D&D set of 1974 required the use of the Chainmail miniatures game for combat resolution. By the publication of the 1977 game editions, combat was mostly resolved verbally. Thus miniatures were no longer required for game play, although some players continued to use them as a visual reference.
In the 1970s, numerous companies began to sell miniature figures specifically for Dungeons & Dragons and similar games. Licensed miniature manufacturers who produced official figures include Grenadier Miniatures (1980–1983), Citadel Miniatures (1984–1986), Ral Partha, and TSR itself. Most of these miniatures used the 25 mm scale.
Periodically, Dungeons & Dragons has returned to its wargaming roots with supplementary rules systems for miniatures-based wargaming. Supplements such as Battlesystem (1985 and 1989) and a new edition of Chainmail (2001) provided rule systems to handle battles between armies by using miniatures.
Sources and influences
An immediate predecessor of Dungeons & Dragons was a set of medieval miniature rules written by Jeff Perren. These were expanded by Gary Gygax, whose additions included a fantasy supplement, before the game was published as Chainmail. When Dave Wesely entered the Army in 1970, his friend and fellow Napoleonics wargamer Dave Arneson began a medieval variation of Wesely's Braunstein games, where players control individuals instead of armies. Arneson used Chainmail to resolve combat. As play progressed, Arneson added such innovations as character classes, experience points, level advancement, armor class, and others. Having partnered previously with Gygax on Don't Give Up the Ship!, Arneson introduced Gygax to his Blackmoor game and the two then collaborated on developing "The Fantasy Game", the game that became Dungeons & Dragons, with the final writing and preparation of the text being done by Gygax. The name was chosen by Gygax's two-year-old daughter Cindy; upon being presented with a number of choices of possible names, she exclaimed, "Oh Daddy, I like Dungeons & Dragons best!", although less prevalent versions of the story gave credit to his wife Mary Jo.:101
Many Dungeons & Dragons elements appear in hobbies of the mid-to-late 20th century. For example, character-based role playing can be seen in improvisational theater. Game-world simulations were well developed in wargaming. Fantasy milieux specifically designed for gaming could be seen in Glorantha's board games among others. Ultimately, however, Dungeons & Dragons represents a unique blending of these elements.
The world of D&D was influenced by world mythology, history, pulp fiction, and contemporary fantasy novels. The importance of J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit as an influence on D&D is controversial. The presence in the game of halflings, elves, half-elves, dwarves, orcs, rangers, and the like, draw comparisons to these works. The resemblance was even closer before the threat of copyright action from Tolkien Enterprises prompted the name changes of hobbit to 'halfling', ent to 'treant', and balrog to 'balor'. For many years, Gygax played down the influence of Tolkien on the development of the game. However, in an interview in 2000, he acknowledged that Tolkien's work had a "strong impact" though he also said that the list of other influential authors was long.
The D&D magic system, in which wizards memorize spells that are used up once cast and must be re-memorized the next day, was heavily influenced by the Dying Earth stories and novels of Jack Vance. The original alignment system (which grouped all characters and creatures into 'Law', 'Neutrality' and 'Chaos') was derived from the novel Three Hearts and Three Lions by Poul Anderson. A troll described in this work influenced the D&D definition of that monster.
Other influences include the works of Robert E. Howard, Edgar Rice Burroughs, A. Merritt, H. P. Lovecraft, Fritz Leiber, L. Sprague de Camp, Fletcher Pratt, Roger Zelazny, and Michael Moorcock. Monsters, spells, and magic items used in the game have been inspired by hundreds of individual works such as A. E. van Vogt's "Black Destroyer", Coeurl (the Displacer Beast), Lewis Carroll's "Jabberwocky" (vorpal sword) and the Book of Genesis (the clerical spell 'Blade Barrier' was inspired by the "flaming sword which turned every way" at the gates of Eden).
Dungeons & Dragons has gone through several revisions. Parallel versions and inconsistent naming practices can make it difficult to distinguish between the different editions.
The original Dungeons & Dragons, now referred to as OD&D, was a small box set of three booklets published in 1974. With a very limited production budget of only $2000 — with only $100 budgeted for artwork:26 — it was amateurish in production and assumed the player was familiar with wargaming. Nevertheless, it grew rapidly in popularity, first among wargamers and then expanding to a more general audience of college and high school students. Roughly 1,000 copies of the game were sold in the first year followed by 3,000 in 1975, and many more in the following years. This first set went through many printings and was supplemented with several official additions, such as the original Greyhawk and Blackmoor supplements (both 1975), as well as magazine articles in TSR's official publications and many fanzines.
In early 1977, TSR created the first element of a two-pronged strategy that would divide D&D for nearly two decades. A Dungeons & Dragons Basic Set boxed edition was introduced that cleaned up the presentation of the essential rules, made the system understandable to the general public, and was sold in a package that could be stocked in toy stores. Later in 1977, the first part of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (AD&D) was published, which brought together the various published rules, options and corrections, then expanded them into a definitive, unified game for hobbyist gamers. TSR marketed them as an introductory game for new players and a more complex game for experienced ones; the Basic Set directed players who exhausted the possibilities of that game to switch to the advanced rules.
As a result of this parallel development, the basic game included many rules and concepts which contradicted comparable ones in AD&D. John Eric Holmes, the editor of the basic game, preferred a lighter tone with more room for personal improvisation. AD&D, on the other hand, was designed to create a tighter, more structured game system than the loose framework of the original game. Between 1977 and 1979, three hardcover rulebooks, commonly referred to as the "core rulebooks", were released: the Player's Handbook (PHB), the Dungeon Master's Guide (DMG), and the Monster Manual (MM). Several supplementary books were published throughout the 1980s, notably Unearthed Arcana (1985) that included a large number of new rules. Confusing matters further, the original D&D boxed set remained in publication until 1979, since it remained a healthy seller for TSR.
In the 1980s, the rules for Advanced Dungeons & Dragons and "basic" Dungeons & Dragons remained separate, each developing along different paths.
In 1981, the basic version of Dungeons & Dragons was revised by Tom Moldvay to make it even more novice-friendly. It was promoted as a continuation of the original D&D tone, whereas AD&D was promoted as advancement of the mechanics. An accompanying Expert Set, originally written by David "Zeb" Cook, allowed players to continue using the simpler ruleset beyond the early levels of play. In 1983, revisions of those sets by Frank Mentzer were released, revising the presentation of the rules to a more tutorial format. These were followed by Companion (1983), Master (1985), and Immortals (1986) sets. Each set covered game play for more powerful characters than the previous. The first four sets were compiled in 1991 as a single hardcover book, the Dungeons & Dragons Rules Cyclopedia, which was released alongside a new introductory boxed set.
Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 2nd Edition was published in 1989, again as three core rulebooks; the primary designer was David "Zeb" Cook. The Monster Manual was replaced by the Monstrous Compendium, a loose-leaf binder that was subsequently replaced by the hardcover Monstrous Manual in 1993. In 1995, the core rulebooks were slightly revised, although still referred to by TSR as the 2nd Edition, and a series of Player's Option manuals were released as optional rulebooks.
The release of AD&D 2nd Edition deliberately excluded some aspects of the game that had attracted negative publicity. References to demons and devils, sexually suggestive artwork, and playable, evil-aligned character types – such as assassins and half-orcs – were removed. The edition moved away from a theme of 1960s and 1970s "sword and sorcery" fantasy fiction to a mixture of medieval history and mythology. The rules underwent minor changes, including the addition of non-weapon proficiencies – skill-like abilities that originally appeared in 1st Edition supplements. The game's magic spells were divided into schools and spheres. A major difference was the promotion of various game settings beyond that of traditional fantasy. This included blending fantasy with other genres, such as horror (Ravenloft), science fiction (Spelljammer), and apocalyptic (Dark Sun), as well as alternative historical and non-European mythological settings.
Wizards of the Coast
In 1997, a near-bankrupt TSR was purchased by Wizards of the Coast. Following three years of development, Dungeons & Dragons 3rd edition was released in 2000. The new release folded the Basic and Advanced lines back into a single unified game. It was the largest revision of the D&D rules to date, and served as the basis for a multi-genre role-playing system designed around 20-sided dice, called the d20 System. The 3rd Edition rules were designed to be internally consistent and less restrictive than previous editions of the game, allowing players more flexibility to create the characters they wanted to play. Skills and feats were introduced into the core rules to encourage further customization of characters. The new rules standardized the mechanics of action resolution and combat. In 2003, Dungeons & Dragons v.3.5 was released as a revision of the 3rd Edition rules. This release incorporated hundreds of rule changes, mostly minor, and expanded the core rulebooks.
In early 2005, Wizards of the Coast's R&D team started to develop Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition, prompted mainly by the feedback obtained from the D&D playing community and a desire to make the game faster, more intuitive, and with a better play experience than under the 3rd Edition. The new game was developed through a number of design phases spanning from May 2005 until its release. Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition was announced at Gen Con in August 2007, and the initial three core books were released June 6, 2008. 4th Edition streamlined the game into a simplified form and introduced numerous rules changes. Many character abilities were restructured into "Powers". These altered the spell-using classes by adding abilities that could be used at will, per encounter, or per day. Likewise, non-magic-using classes were provided with parallel sets of options. Software tools, including player character and monster building programs, became a major part of the game. This edition added the D&D Encounters program; a weekly event held at local stores designed to draw players back to the game by giving "the busy gamer the chance to play D&D once a week as their schedules allow. In the past, D&D games could take months, even years, and players generally had to attend every session so that the story flow wasn't interrupted. With Encounters, players can come and go as they choose and new players can easily be integrated into the story continuity".
On January 9, 2012, Wizards of the Coast announced that it was working on a 5th edition of the game. The company planned to take suggestions from players and let them playtest the rules. Public playtesting began on May 24, 2012. At Gen Con 2012 in August, Mike Mearls, lead developer for 5th Edition, said that Wizards of the Coast had received feedback from more than 75,000 playtesters, but that the entire development process would take two years, adding, "I can't emphasize this enough ... we're very serious about taking the time we need to get this right." The release of the 5th Edition, coinciding with D&D's 40th anniversary, occurred in the second half of 2014.
Since the release of 5th edition, there have been over twenty Dungeon & Dragons books published including new rulebooks, campaign guides and adventure modules. 2017 had "the most number of players in its history — 12 million to 15 million in North America alone". Mary Pilon, for Bloomberg, reported that sales of 5th edition Dungeon & Dragons "were up 41 percent in 2017 from the year before, and soared another 52 percent in 2018, the game’s biggest sales year yet. [...] In 2017, 9 million people watched others play D&D on Twitch, immersing themselves in the world of the game without ever having to pick up a die or cast a spell". In 2018, Wizards of the Coast organized a massive live-stream event, the Stream of Many Eyes, where ten live-streamed sessions of Dungeons & Dragons were performed on Twitch over three days. This event won the Content Marketing Institute's 2019 award for best "In-Person (Event) Content Marketing Strategy". Dungeons & Dragons continued to have a strong presence on Twitch throughout 2019; this included a growing number of celebrity players and dungeon masters, such as Joe Manganiello, Deborah Ann Woll and Stephen Colbert.
In 2020, Wizards of the Coast announced that Dungeons & Dragons had its 6th annual year of growth in 2019 with a "300 percent increase in sales of their introductory box sets, as well as a 65% increase on sales in Europe, a rate which has more than quadrupled since 2014". In terms of player demographics in 2019, 39% of identified as female and 61% identified as male. 40% of players are considered Gen Z (24 years old or younger), 34% of players are in the age range of 25–34 and 26% of players are aged 35+. In January 2021, the Los Angeles Times reported that according to Liz Schuh, head of publishing and licensing for Dungeons & Dragons, "revenue was up 35% in 2020 compared with 2019, the seventh consecutive year of growth," and in 2020, during the COVID-19 pandemic, "virtual play rose 86% [...] aided by online platforms such as Roll20 and Fantasy Grounds". Sarah Parvini, for the Los Angeles Times, wrote, "players and scholars attribute the game’s resurgent popularity not only to the longueurs of the pandemic, but also to its reemergence in pop culture — on the Netflix series Stranger Things, whose main characters play D&D in a basement; on the sitcom The Big Bang Theory; or via the host of celebrities who display their love for the game online".
Early in the game's history, TSR took no action against small publishers' production of D&D compatible material, and even licensed Judges Guild to produce D&D materials for several years, such as City State of the Invincible Overlord. This attitude changed in the mid-1980s when TSR took legal action to try to prevent others from publishing compatible material. This angered many fans and led to resentment by the other gaming companies. Although TSR took legal action against several publishers in an attempt to restrict third-party usage, it never brought any court cases to completion, instead settling out of court in every instance. TSR itself ran afoul of intellectual property law in several cases.
With the launch of Dungeons & Dragons's 3rd Edition, Wizards of the Coast made the d20 System available under the Open Game License (OGL) and d20 System trademark license. Under these licenses, authors were free to use the d20 System when writing games and game supplements. The OGL and d20 Trademark License made possible new games, some based on licensed products like Star Wars, and new versions of older games, such as Call of Cthulhu.
With the release of the fourth edition, Wizards of the Coast introduced its Game System License, which represented a significant restriction compared to the very open policies embodied by the OGL. In part as a response to this, some publishers (such as Paizo Publishing with its Pathfinder Roleplaying Game) who previously produced materials in support of the D&D product line, decided to continue supporting the 3rd Edition rules, thereby competing directly with Wizards of the Coast. Others, such as Kenzer & Company, are returning to the practice of publishing unlicensed supplements and arguing that copyright law does not allow Wizards of the Coast to restrict third-party usage.
During the 2000s, there has been a trend towards reviving and recreating older editions of D&D, known as the Old School Revival. This in turn inspired the creation of "retro-clones", games which more closely recreate the original rule sets, using material placed under the OGL along with non-copyrightable mechanical aspects of the older rules to create a new presentation of the games.
Alongside the publication of the 5th Edition, Wizards of the Coast established a two-pronged licensing approach. The core of the 5th Edition rules have been made available under the OGL, while publishers and independent creators have also been given the opportunity to create licensed materials directly for Dungeons & Dragons and associated properties like the Forgotten Realms under a program called the DM's Guild. The DM's Guild does not function under the OGL, but uses a community agreement intended to foster liberal cooperation among content creators.
Wizards of the Coast has started to release 5th Edition products that tie into other intellectual properties — such as Magic: The Gathering with the Guildmasters' Guide to Ravnica (2018) and Mythic Odysseys of Theros (2020) source books. Two 5th Edition starter box sets based on TV shows, Stranger Things and Rick and Morty, were released in 2019. Source books based on Dungeons & Dragons live play series have also been released: Acquisitions Incorporated (2019) and Explorer's Guide to Wildemount (2020).
Eric Goldberg reviewed Dungeons & Dragons in Ares Magazine #1 (March 1980), rating it a 6 out of 9, and commented that "Dungeons and Dragons is an impressive achievement based on the concept alone, and also must be credited with cementing the marriage between the fantasy genre and gaming." Eric Goldberg again reviewed Dungeons & Dragons in Ares Magazine #3 and commented that "D&D is the FRP game played most often in most places."
The game had more than three million players around the world by 1981, and copies of the rules were selling at a rate of about 750,000 per year by 1984. Beginning with a French language edition in 1982, Dungeons & Dragons has been translated into many languages beyond the original English. By 1992, the game had been translated into 14 languages and sold over 2 million copies in 44 countries worldwide. By 2004, consumers had spent more than $1 billion on Dungeons & Dragons products and the game had been played by more than 20 million people. As many as six million people played the game in 2007.
Later editions would lead to inevitable comparisons between the game series. Griffin McElroy, for Polygon, wrote: "The game has shifted in the past four decades, bouncing between different rules sets, philosophies and methods of play. Role-playing, character customization and real-life improvisational storytelling has always been at the game's core, but how those ideas are interpreted by the game system has changed drastically edition-to-edition". Dieter Bohn, for The Verge, wrote: "Every few years there’s been a new version of D&D that tries to address the shortcomings of the previous version and also make itself more palatable to its age. [...] The third edition got a reputation (which it didn’t necessarily deserve) for being too complex and rules-focused. The fourth edition got a reputation (which it didn’t necessarily deserve) for being too focused on miniatures and grids, too mechanical. Meanwhile, the company that owns D&D had released a bunch of its old material for free as a service to fans, and some of that was built up into a competing game called Pathfinder. Pathfinder ultimately became more popular, by some metrics, than D&D itself". Bohn highlighted that the 5th Edition was "designed for one purpose: to bring D&D back to its roots and win back everybody who left during the edition wars". Henry Glasheen, for SLUG Magazine, highlighted that after jumping ship during the 4th Edition era he was drawn back to Dungeons & Dragons with 5th Edition and he considers it "the new gold standard for D20-based tabletop RPGs". Glasheen wrote "Fifth Edition is a compelling reason to get excited about D&D again" and "while some will welcome the simplicity, I fully expect that plenty of people will stick to whatever system suits them best. However, this edition is easily my favorite, ranking even higher than D&D 3.5, my first love in D&D".
Curtis D. Carbonell, in the book Dread Trident: Tabletop Role-Playing Games and the Modern Fantastic, wrote: "Negative association with earlier niche 'nerd' culture have reversed. 5e has become inclusive in its reach of players, after years of focusing on a white, male demographic. [...] At its simplest, the game system now encourages different types of persons to form a party not just to combat evil [...] but to engage in any number of adventure scenarios".:82–83
The various editions of Dungeons & Dragons have won many Origins Awards, including All Time Best Roleplaying Rules of 1977, Best Roleplaying Rules of 1989, Best Roleplaying Game of 2000 and Best Role Playing Game and Best Role Playing Supplement of 2014 for the 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. Advanced Dungeons & Dragons was ranked 2nd in the 1996 reader poll of Arcane magazine to determine the 50 most popular roleplaying games of all time. Dungeons & Dragons was inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame in 2016 and into the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame in 2017.
Legacy and influence
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. Within months of Dungeons & Dragons's release, new role-playing game writers and publishers began releasing their own role-playing games, with most of these being in the fantasy genre. Some of the earliest other role-playing games inspired by D&D include Tunnels & Trolls (1975), Empire of the Petal Throne (1975), and Chivalry & Sorcery (1976).
The role-playing movement initiated by D&D would lead to release of the science fiction game Traveller (1977), the fantasy game RuneQuest (1978), and subsequent game systems such as Chaosium's Call of Cthulhu (1981), Champions (1982), GURPS (1986), and Vampire: The Masquerade (1991). Dungeons & Dragons and the games it influenced fed back into the genre's origin – miniatures wargames – with combat strategy games like Warhammer Fantasy Battles. D&D also had a large impact on modern video games.
D&D has been compared unfavorably to other role-playing games of its time. Writing for Slate, Erik Sofge makes unfavorable comparisons between the violent incentives of D&D and the more versatile role-playing experience of GURPS. He claims that "for decades, gamers have argued that since D&D came first, its lame, morally repulsive experience system can be forgiven. But the damage is still being done: New generations of players are introduced to RPGs as little more than a collective fantasy of massacre." This criticism generated backlash from D&D fans. Writing for Ars Technica, Ben Kuchera responded that Sofge had experienced a "small-minded Dungeon Master who only wanted to kill things", and that better game experiences are possible.
Noelle Stevenson and the crew of She-Ra and the Princesses of Power were strongly influenced by Dungeons & Dragons, with Stevenson calling it basically a D&D campaign, with Adora, Glimmer, and Bow falling into "specific classes in D&D".
Controversy and notoriety
The game's commercial success was a factor that led to lawsuits regarding distribution of royalties between original creators Gygax and Arneson. Gygax later became embroiled in a political struggle for control of TSR which culminated in a court battle and Gygax's decision to sell his ownership interest in the company in 1985.
At various times in its history, Dungeons & Dragons has received negative publicity, in particular from some Christian groups, for alleged promotion of such practices as devil worship, witchcraft, suicide, and murder, and for the presence of naked breasts in drawings of female humanoids in the original AD&D manuals (mainly monsters such as harpies, succubi, etc.). These controversies led TSR to remove many potentially controversial references and artwork when releasing the 2nd Edition of AD&D. Many of these references, including the use of the names "devils" and "demons", were reintroduced in the 3rd edition. The moral panic over the game led to problems for fans of D&D who faced social ostracism, unfair treatment, and false association with the occult and Satanism, regardless of an individual fan's actual religious affiliation and beliefs.
Dungeons & Dragons has also been the subject of rumors regarding players having difficulty separating fantasy from reality, even leading to psychotic episodes. The most notable of these was the saga of James Dallas Egbert III, the facts of which were fictionalized in the novel Mazes and Monsters and later made into a TV movie in 1982 starring Tom Hanks. William Dear, the private investigator hired by the Egbert family to find their son when he went missing at college, wrote a book titled The Dungeon Master refuting any connection with D&D and Egbert's personal issues. The game was blamed for some of the actions of Chris Pritchard, who was convicted in 1990 of murdering his stepfather. Research by various psychologists, starting with Armando Simon, has concluded that no harmful effects are related to the playing of D&D.
Dungeons & Dragons has, however, been cited as encouraging people to socialize weekly or biweekly, teaching problem solving skills which can be beneficial in adult life, and teaching positive moral decisions.
In 2020, Polygon reported that "the D&D team announced that it would be making changes to portions of its 5th edition product line that fans have called out for being insensitive". Sebastian Modak, for The Washington Post, reported that the tabletop community has widely approved these changes. Modak wrote that "in its statement addressing mistakes around portrayals of different peoples in the D&D universe, Wizards of the Coast highlighted its recent efforts in bringing in more diverse voices to craft the new D&D source books coming out in 2021. [...] These conversations — around depictions of race and alleged treatment of employees of marginalized backgrounds and identities — have encouraged players to seek out other tabletop roleplaying experiences". Matthew Gault, for Wired, reported positively on the roundtable discussions Wizards of the Coast has hosted with fans and community leaders on diversity and inclusion. However, Gault also highlighted that other efforts, such as revisions to old material and the release of new material, have been less great and at times minimal. Gault wrote, "WotC appears to be trying to change things, but it keeps stumbling, and it’s often the fans who pick up the pieces. [...] WotC is trying to make changes, but it often feels like lip service. [...] The loudest voices criticizing D&D right now are doing it out of love. They don’t want to see it destroyed, they want it to change with the times".
D&D's commercial success has led to many other related products, including Dragon Magazine, Dungeon Magazine, an animated television series, a film series, an official role-playing soundtrack, novels, both ongoing and limited series licensed comics, and numerous computer and video games. Hobby and toy stores sell dice, miniatures, adventures, and other game aids related to D&D and its game offspring.
In popular culture
D&D grew in popularity through the late 1970s and 1980s. Numerous games, films, and cultural references based on D&D or D&D-like fantasies, characters or adventures have been ubiquitous since the end of the 1970s. D&D players are (sometimes pejoratively) portrayed as the epitome of geekdom, and have become the basis of much geek and gamer humor and satire. "In 2017, 9 million people watched others play D&D on Twitch, immersing themselves in the world of the game without ever having to pick up a die or cast a spell".
Famous D&D players include Pulitzer Prize-winning author Junot Díaz, professional basketball player Tim Duncan, comedian Stephen Colbert, and actors Vin Diesel and Robin Williams. D&D and its fans have been the subject of spoof films, including Fear of Girls and The Gamers: Dorkness Rising.
- D&D Championship Series
- "D&D Basic Set". Rulebooks and Sets. acaeum.com. Archived from the original on June 24, 2011. Retrieved May 16, 2013.
- "D&D: The 'What does that stand for?' list". Geek Native. February 18, 2019. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- Waters, Darren (April 26, 2004). "What happened to Dungeons and Dragons?". BBC News. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- D'Anastasio, Cecilia (August 26, 2019). "Dungeons & Deceptions: The First D&D Players Push Back On The Legend Of Gary Gygax". Kotaku. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- Michaud, Jon (November 2, 2015). "The Tangled Cultural Roots of Dungeons & Dragons". The New Yorker. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- Birnbaum 2004
- J. Patrick Williams; Sean Q. Hendricks; W. Keith Winkler (2006). Gaming as Culture, Essays on Reality, Identity and Experience in Fantasy Games. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Company. pp. 1–14, 27. ISBN 0-7864-2436-2. OCLC 63122794.
- Jahromi, Neima (October 24, 2017). "The Uncanny Resurrection of Dungeons & Dragons". The New Yorker. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- "Frankly, the difference in sales between Wizards and all other producers of roleplaying games is so staggering that even saying there is an 'RPG industry' at all may be generous." Cook, Monte. "The Open Game License as I See It – Part II". Archived from the original on March 28, 2006. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
- Pilon, Mary (July 8, 2019). "The Rise of the Professional Dungeon Master". Bloomberg Businessweek. Archived from the original on July 10, 2019. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- Gygax; "From the Sorcerer's Scroll" in The Dragon #26.
- Vehovec, Doug (August 23, 2018). "Is There a Best Edition of D&D? Absolutely". Nerdarchy. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- Appelcline, Shannon. "Players Handbook (1e) - Product History". Dungeon Masters Guild. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- Harold Johnson; Steve Winter; Peter Adkison; Ed Stark; Peter Archer (2004). 30 Years of Adventure: A Celebration of Dungeons & Dragons. Renton, WA: Wizards of the Coast. p. 253. ISBN 0-7869-3498-0. OCLC 56961559.
- According to a 1999 survey in the United States, 6% of 12- to 35-year-olds have played role-playing games. Of those who play regularly, two thirds play D&D. (Dancey; Adventure Game Industry Market Research Summary)
- Products branded Dungeons & Dragons made up over fifty percent of the RPG products sold in 2005. (Hite; State of the Industry 2005)
- Brodeur, Nicole (May 4, 2018). "Behind the scenes of the making of Dungeons & Dragons". The Seattle Times. Archived from the original on May 13, 2018. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- Heller, Emily (May 26, 2018). "A beginner's guide to playing Dungeons and Dragons". Polygon. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- Waldron, David (2005). "Role-Playing Games and the Christian Right: Community Formation in Response to a Moral Panic". The Journal of Religion and Popular Culture. University of Toronto Press Inc. (UTPress). 9 (1): 3. doi:10.3138/jrpc.9.1.003. hdl:1959.17/44257. ISSN 1703-289X.
- McMartin Preschool: Anatomy of a Panic - Retro Report. The New York Times. Retrieved July 31, 2018.
- Waskul, Dennis; Lust, Matt (2004). "Role-Playing and Playing Roles: The Person, Player, and Persona in Fantasy Role-Playing". Symbolic Interaction. 27 (3): 333–356. doi:10.1525/si.2004.27.3.333. ISSN 1533-8665.
- Slavicsek, Bill; Baker, Richard W. (2005). Dungeons and Dragons for Dummies. Hoboken, N.J.: Wiley. pp. 268, 293, 363. ISBN 0-7645-8459-6. OCLC 57574631.
- Bethke, Erik (2003). Game development and production. Wordware Game Developer's Library. Wordware Publishing, Inc. p. 12. ISBN 1-55622-951-8.
- Spade, Joan Z.; Ballantine, Jeanne H. (2011). "Meso-Level Agents of Gender Socialization". Schools and Society: A Sociological Approach to Education (4 ed.). Pine Forge Press. p. 294. ISBN 978-1-4129-7924-5.
- "Encounters are to adventures what adventures are to campaigns" (Cook, Williams, Tweet; Dungeon Master's Guide v3.5., p. 129)
- Rouchart, Sandy; Aylett, Ruth (2003). Solving the Narrative Paradox in VEs — Lessons from RPGs. Intelligent Virtual Agents: 4th International Workshop. Berlin: Springer. pp. 245–246. ISBN 978-3-540-39396-2. OCLC 166468859.
- Cook, Monte; Tweet, Jonathan; Williams, Skip (2005). Dungeon Master's Guide: Core Rulebook II (3.5). Renton, WA: Wizards of the Coast. pp. 4, 98, 114. ISBN 0-7869-1551-X. OCLC 45052801.
- Gygax, Gary (1979). Dungeon Masters Guide. Lake Geneva, WI: TSR. p. 114. ISBN 0-935696-02-4. OCLC 13642005.
- Mohan, Kim (1986). Wilderness Survival Guide. TSR. ISBN 0-88038-291-0. OCLC 14766400.
- Tweet, Jonathan (2004). Dungeons & Dragons Basic Game. Renton, WA.: Wizards of the Coast. p. 32. ISBN 0-7869-3409-3. OCLC 63137737.
- The original game used 3d6 in the order rolled (Gygax, Arneson; Dungeons & Dragons). Variants have since been included (Gygax; Dungeon Masters Guide, p. 11) and the standard for more recent editions is "rolling four six-sided dice, ignoring the lowest die, and totaling the other three" (Tweet, Cook, Williams; Player's Handbook [3.0], p. 4), arranging the results in any order desired. Recent editions also allow for a "point buy" system.
- Tweet; Dungeons & Dragons Basic Game p. 24
- Williams, Hendricks & Winkler 2006 "The Role-Playing Game and the Game of Role-Playing"
- "Dungeons & Dragons Dice". gmdice.com. Retrieved August 20, 2019.
- Tweet, Cook, Williams; Player's Handbook v3.5, p. 62
- Tweet, Cook, Williams; Player's Handbook v3.5, p. 136
- "Generally, when you are subject to an unusual or magical attack, you get a saving throw to avoid or reduce the effect." There is identical language in sections titled 'Saving Throws' in (Tweet 2000:119).
- Tweet, Cook, Williams; Player's Handbook (3.0), pp. 119–120
- Cook, Williams, Tweet; Dungeon Master's Guide v3.5., p. 197
- Early editions did not allow or had severe penalties for changing alignment (Gygax; Dungeon Masters Guide, p. 24) but more recent versions are more allowing of change. (Cook, Williams, Tweet; Dungeon Master's Guide v3.5., p. 134)
- Tweet, Cook, Williams; Player's Handbook v3.5, p. 59
- Gygax; Dungeon Masters Guide, p. 84
- Tweet, Cook, Williams; Player's Handbook v3.5, p. 58
- Cook, Williams, Tweet; Dungeon Master's Guide v3.5., p. 46
- Tweet, Cook, Williams; Player's Handbook v3.5, p. 145
- Cook, Williams, Tweet; Dungeon Master's Guide v3.5., p. 289
- Cook, Williams, Tweet; Dungeon Master's Guide v3.5., p. 296
- Cook, Williams, Tweet; Dungeon Master's Guide v3.5., p. 41
- Cook, Williams, Tweet; Dungeon Master's Guide v3.5., p. 43
- "A D&D campaign is an organized framework... to provide a realistic setting for a series of fantastic adventures." (Allston; Rules Cyclopedia, p. 256)
- "It is important to distinguish between a campaign and a world, since the terms often seem to be used interchangeably ... A world is a fictional place in which a campaign is set. It's also often called a campaign setting." (Cook, Williams, Tweet; Dungeon Master's Guide v3.5., p. 129)
- Williams; Dungeon Master Option: High Level Campaigns, p. 45
- "Stranger Things D&D Roleplaying Game Starter Set | Dungeons & Dragons". dnd.wizards.com. Retrieved January 7, 2020.
- Hall, Charlie (April 22, 2019). "Stranger Things D&D Starter Set is a surprisingly good introduction to the game". Polygon. Retrieved January 7, 2020.
- "Dungeons & Dragons vs. Rick and Morty RPG Is Stupid, Irreverent Fun...Especially for DMs". io9. Retrieved January 7, 2020.
- "We Played a D&D VS RICK AND MORTY Adventure". Nerdist. Retrieved January 7, 2020.
- Johnson, et al.; 30 Years of Adventure, p. 23
- The first Dungeon Masters Guide gave only a quarter of a page out of a total 240 pages to discussing the option use of miniatures. (Gygax; Dungeon Masters Guide, p. 10)
- Pope; Grenadier Models
- Scott; Otherworld
- Pope; Ral Partha
- Pope; TSR
- Academy of Adventure Gaming Arts & Design; List of Winners (2002)
- Arneson; "My Life and Role Playing" in Different Worlds #3
- Mead, Malcomson; Dungeons & Dragons FAQ
- Kushner; Dungeon Master: The Life and Legacy of Gary Gygax
- Wizards of the Coast; The History of TSR
- Witwer, Michael (2015). Empire of the Imagination: Gary Gygax and the Birth of Dungeons & Dragons. New York: Bloomsbury Publishing. ISBN 978-1-63286-279-2.
- Grigg; Albert Goes Narrative Contracting
- Schick; Heroic Worlds, pp. 17–34
- Kuntz; "Tolkien in Dungeons & Dragons" in Dragon #13
- Gygax; "On the Influence of J. R. R. Tolkien on the D&D and AD&D games" in Dragon #95
- Drout; "J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia", p 229
- "Gary Gygax - Creator of Dungeons & Dragons". TheOneRing. Archived from the original on December 6, 2013. Retrieved January 10, 2014.
- Gygax; "The Dungeons and Dragons Magic System" in The Strategic Review, Vol. 2, No. 2
- DeVarque; Literary Sources of D&D
- The first seven listed here are the "most immediate influences". (Gygax; Dungeon Masters Guide, p. 224)
- Carroll, Bart; Winter, Steve (February 6, 2009). "Name Level". Dragon (372). Wizards of the Coast. Archived from the original on April 15, 2012.
- Witwer, Michael; Newman, Kyle; Witwer, Sam (2018). Dungeons & Dragons Art & Arcana: A Visual History. Ten Speed Press. ISBN 9780399580949.
- Peterson, Jon (2012). Playing at the World. Unreason. p. 496. ISBN 978-0-615-64204-8.
- Schick; Heroic Worlds, pp. 132–153
- "Basic set". Acaeum.com. Archived from the original on June 24, 2011.
- Schick; Heroic Worlds, p. 133
- Gygax; "Dungeons & Dragons: What Is It and Where Is It Going" in The Dragon #21
- "This is not AD&D 3rd edition" Winter, Steven (in the forward to Cook; Player's Handbook).
- Ward; "The Games Wizards: Angry Mothers From Heck (And what we do about them)" in Dragon #154
- Cook; Player's Handbook (1989), pp. 25–41
- Pryor, Herring, Tweet, Richie; Creative Campaigning
- Appelcline, Shannon (August 3, 2006). "Wizards of the Coast: 1990 – present". A Brief History of Game. RPGnet. Archived from the original on August 24, 2006. Retrieved September 1, 2006.
- "After ... the idea of acquiring TSR began to swim in my mind it took me maybe thirty seconds to decide, We've got to do a third edition of Dungeons & Dragons." (Adkison, Peter in Johnson, et al.; 30 Years of Adventure, p. 250).
- Johnson, et al.; 30 Years of Adventure, p. 273
- Johnson, et al.; 30 Years of Adventure, pp. 255–263
- "Countdown to 3rd Edition: Feats and Fighters" in Dragon #270
- Tweet, Cook, Williams; Player's Handbook v3.5, p. 4
- Carter, et al.; Wizards Presents: Races and Classes, pp. 6–9
- Slavicsek; Ampersand: Exciting News!
- Svensson; Dungeons & Dragons reborn
- "Dungeons & Dragons tries to lure back players - CNN.com". CNN. June 8, 2010. Retrieved February 26, 2021.
- Harnish, MJ (January 9, 2012). "5th Edition D&D Is in Development — Should We Care?". Wired. Archived from the original on May 31, 2014. Retrieved January 9, 2012.
- Gilsdorf, Ethan (January 9, 2012). "Players Roll the Dice for Dungeons & Dragons Remake". The New York Times. p. 2. Archived from the original on January 10, 2012. Retrieved January 9, 2012.
- Mearls, Mike (January 9, 2012). "Charting the Course for D&D: Your Voice, Your Game". Wizards of the Coast. Archived from the original on December 25, 2012. Retrieved January 9, 2012.
- Dungeons & Dragons Roleplaying Game Official Home Page - Article (News on D&D Next) Archived July 20, 2014, at the Wayback Machine
- Ewalt, David M. (August 20, 2012). "What's Next With Dungeons And Dragons?". Forbes. Archived from the original on August 25, 2012. Retrieved August 26, 2012.
- Frum, Larry (May 19, 2014). "40 years later, 'Dungeons & Dragons' still inspiring gamers". CNN. Archived from the original on February 14, 2018. Retrieved February 13, 2018.
- "Books | Wizards of the Coast". Penguin Random House Canada. Retrieved July 8, 2019.
- Kunzelman, Cameron (July 3, 2019). "Dungeons & Dragons Expands Its Line with Three New Releases". Paste Magazine. Retrieved July 8, 2019.
- Pilon, Mary (July 8, 2019). "The Rise of the Professional Dungeon Master". Bloomberg. Retrieved July 9, 2019.
- Gramuglia, Anthony (May 4, 2020). "Stream of Many Eyes: D&D's Most Ambitious (and Fun) Event, Explained". CBR. Retrieved November 2, 2020.
- "Stream of Many Eyes | Dungeons & Dragons". dnd.wizards.com. Retrieved November 2, 2020.
- "2019 Finalists and Winners". Content Marketing Awards. Retrieved November 2, 2020.
- Rios, Joshua (July 31, 2019). "How Dungeons & Dragons Is Finding New Life on Twitch and Beyond". Adweek. Retrieved November 2, 2020.
- "2019 Was D&D's Best Year Ever". ScreenRant. April 22, 2020. Retrieved April 26, 2020.
- Parvini, Sarah (January 13, 2021). "Turning to Dungeons & Dragons to escape a real life monster — COVID-19". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on January 13, 2021. Retrieved February 10, 2021.
- Sacco, Ciro Alessandro. "The Ultimate Interview with Gary Gygax". thekyngdoms.com. Archived from the original on December 23, 2011. Retrieved September 2, 2014.
- Appelcline, Shannon (July 16, 2008). "Games & The Law, Part Seven: The D&D Dilemma". Archived from the original on May 4, 2009. Retrieved July 7, 2009.
- Copyright conflicts with Tolkien Enterprises led to removal of references to Hobbits, Ents and others. (Hallford, Hallford; Swords & Circuitry)
- Wizards of the Coast; The d20 System
- Anonymous (July 9, 2008). "Kenzer & Co, D&D, and Trademarks". Robertson Games. Archived from the original on January 18, 2010. Retrieved July 7, 2009.
- Montgomery, Jeff. "Ownership and License (OGL) Questions". Dungeon Masters Guild. Archived from the original on February 15, 2018. Retrieved February 13, 2018.
- Hall, Charlie (July 23, 2018). "Dungeons & Dragons gets a major crossover with Magic: The Gathering this fall". Polygon. Retrieved April 26, 2020.
- "Dungeons and Dragons is Set to Crossover with Magic the Gathering". ScreenRant. February 28, 2020. Retrieved April 26, 2020.
- Hall, Charlie (February 14, 2019). "The Stranger Things-themed D&D Starter Set is real, includes Mike's homebrew campaign". Polygon. Retrieved April 26, 2020.
- Ryan, Jon (November 19, 2019). "The D&D vs Rick and Morty Game is Just as Wild as You'd Expect". IGN.
- Plante, Corey. "D&D 'Explorer's Guide to Wildemount' makes Critical Role & dunamancy canon". Inverse. Retrieved April 26, 2020.
- Goldberg, Eric (March 1980). "A Galaxy of Games". Ares Magazine. Simulations Publications, Inc. (1): 33.
- Goldberg, Eric (July 1980). "Games". Ares Magazine. Simulations Publications, Inc. (3): 34.
- Stewart Alsop II (February 1, 1982). "TSR Hobbies Mixes Fact and Fantasy".
- Gilligan, Eugene (May 1, 1984). "Keeping Pace with Packaging". Playthings. Archived from the original on May 14, 2013. Retrieved September 6, 2012. – via HighBeam Research (subscription required)
- Kastre, Michael F. (Spring 1992). "An Industry of the Mind: Examining Today's Video Game Industry". Hispanic Engineer & IT. Career Communications Group. 8 (1): 22-28 (27).
- Waters; What happened to Dungeons and Dragons?
- McElroy, Griffin (July 9, 2014). "Here's how Dungeons & Dragons is changing for its new edition". Polygon. Retrieved August 19, 2020.
- Bohn, Dieter (August 18, 2014). "Slaying the demons of 'Dungeons & Dragons'". The Verge. Retrieved August 19, 2020.
- Glasheen, Henry (February 12, 2015). "D&D Fifth Edition: Player's Handbook Review". SLUG Magazine. Retrieved April 26, 2020.
- Glasheen, Henry (February 26, 2015). "D&D Fifth Edition: Dungeon Master's Guide Review". SLUG Magazine. Retrieved April 26, 2020.
- Carbonell, Curtis D. (2019). "Chapter 3: Dungeons and Dragons Multiverse". Dread Trident: Tabletop Role-Playing Games and the Modern Fantastic. Liverpool: Oxford University Press. pp. 80–108. ISBN 978-1-78962-468-7. OCLC 1129971339.
- Academy of Adventure Gaming Arts & Design; Archive of List of Origins Award Winners
- "Origins Award Winners (1996)". Academy of Adventure Gaming Arts & Design. Archived from the original on December 21, 2007. Retrieved November 2, 2007.
- Academy of Adventure Gaming Arts and Design; Hall of Fame
- Schick; Heroic Worlds, pp. 414–418
- Games Magazine Online; Hall of Fame
- Pettengale, Paul (Christmas 1996). "Arcane Presents the Top 50 Roleplaying Games 1996". Arcane. Future Publishing (14): 25–35.
- "Today, Dungeons & Dragons was inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame at the Strong Museum for Play". Retrieved June 25, 2020.
- "20th ANNIVERSARY SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY HALL OF FAME Inductees Are…". Retrieved June 25, 2020.
- "Although we have come a long way since D&D, the essential concept is still the same, and is one that will endure." (Darlington; "A History of Role-Playing Part IX").
- Rilstone; Role-Playing Games: An Overview
- Schick; Heroic Worlds, pp. 223–244
- Fine; Shared Fantasy, pp. 16–19
- Darlington; A History of Role-Playing Part V
- Darlington; A History of Role-Playing Part VIII
- Grady; In Genre
- PC Gamer; How Dungeons & Dragons shaped the modern videogame
- Sofge, Erik (March 10, 2008). "With Dungeons & Dragons, Gary Gygax created a monster". Slate Magazine. Retrieved June 11, 2020.
- Kuchera, Ben (March 11, 2008). "Slate editorial bashes D&D, but we know the truth". Ars Technica. Retrieved June 11, 2020.
- Marrongelli, Rocco (November 9, 2018). "'She-Ra and the Princesses of Power' Producer Says It's Basically a D&D; Campaign". Newsweek. Archived from the original on March 5, 2020. Retrieved April 21, 2020.
- Judges Guild; "Interview with Dave Arneson" in Pegasus #1
- Rausch; Dave Arneson Interview
- Gygax; Gygax FAQ
- Kreidler, Marc (January 1, 1994). "The Attacks on Role-Playing Games". Skeptical Inquirer. Retrieved June 24, 2020.
- Williams, Tweet, Cook; Monster Manual, pp. 41,47
- Gagne, Kenneth Andrew (September 28, 2018). "Moral panics over youth culture and video games". Digital WPI. Retrieved June 24, 2020.
- Darlington, Steve. "PTGPTB Issue 4: The History of Role-Playing, Part IV". Places to Go, People to Be. Retrieved June 24, 2020.
- Hately, Shaun (August 19, 1979). "PTGPTB Issue 7: The Disappearance of James Dallas Egbert III (Part II)". Places to Go, People to Be. Retrieved June 24, 2020.
- O'Connor, John J. (December 28, 1982). "TV: 'MAZES AND MONSTERS,' FANTASY". The New York Times. Retrieved June 24, 2020.
- Svitavsky, William L. (2001). "Geek culture: An annotated interdisciplinary bibliography". Bulletin of Bibliography-Westwood then Westport. 58 (2): 101–108.
- Simón, Armando (1987). "Emotional stability pertaining to the game of Dungeons & Dragons". Psychology in the Schools. Wiley. 24 (4): 329–332. doi:10.1002/1520-6807(198710)24:4<329::AID-PITS2310240406>3.0.CO;2-9. ISSN 0033-3085.
- Adams, Aubrey S. (2013). "Needs Met Through Role-Playing Games: A Fantasy Theme Analysis of Dungeons & Dragons". Kaleidoscope: A Graduate Journal of Qualitative Communication Research. 12.
- Wright, Jennifer Cole (2017). "Imaginative Role-Playing as a Medium for Moral Development". Journal of Humanistic Psychology.
- Hall, Charlie; Polo, Susana (June 25, 2020). "The game and comics industries are grappling with widespread allegations of harassment and abuse". Polygon. Retrieved June 26, 2020.
- Modak, Sebastian (July 24, 2020). "Amid a pandemic and a racial reckoning, 'D&D' finds itself at an inflection point". The Washington Post. Retrieved July 25, 2020.
- Gault, Matthew (December 31, 2020). "Dungeons, Dragons, and Diversity". Wired. ISSN 1059-1028. Retrieved December 31, 2020.
- Peterson, Jon. "History: Forty Years of Adventure". Dungeons & Dragons. Archived from the original on February 9, 2015. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- SHAFFER, R.L. (August 28, 2009). "DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS: THE ANIMATED SERIES - BEGINNINGS DVD REVIEW". IGN. Archived from the original on December 3, 2017. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- "15 Things You Didn't Know About The Disastrous Dungeons & Dragons Movie". ScreenRant. December 3, 2017. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- Mancuso, Vinnie (July 30, 2019). "'Game Night' Directors Eyed to Helm 'Dungeons & Dragons' Movie". Collider. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- "Reviews Archive - Dungeons & Dragons CD". Midnight Syndicate. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- "The first Dragonlance novels gave Dungeons & Dragons a new dimension". Games. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- Maher, John (September 4, 2018). "R.A. Salvatore reflects on 30 years of writing Drizzt and an ever-changing fandom". Polygon. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- "Dungeons & Dragons". IDW Publishing. Archived from the original on January 26, 2011. Retrieved January 22, 2011.
- Favis, Elise (December 12, 2019). "Dungeons & Dragons has a long history in video games. Dark Alliance wants to take that further". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on January 4, 2020. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- Williams, Ian (April 27, 2015). "The 10 Greatest Dungeons and Dragons Videogames". Paste. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- Macgregor, Jody (December 15, 2019). "There are "seven or eight" Dungeons & Dragons videogames in the works". PC Gamer. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- "From classic board games to role-playing, take your game to the table". The Buffalo News. February 13, 2020. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- Allan, Patrick (February 9, 2015). "The Surprising Benefits of Role-Playing Games (and How to Get Started)". Lifehacker. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- Currell, Latasha (2004). "Dungeons & Dragons—30 Years and Going Strong". The Golden Gate Press Online. Archived from the original on April 30, 2011.
- "Bill Gates Grants Self 18 Dexterity, 20 Charisma". The Onion. June 18, 1997. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- Gilsdorf, Ethan (November 13, 2019). "In a Chaotic World, Dungeons & Dragons Is Resurgent". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
- Manson, Marilyn; Strauss, Neil (1999). The Long Hard Road Out of Hell. HarperCollins. p. 26. ISBN 0-06-098746-4.
- Diesel, Colbert, Lillard: Tonjes; Interview with Charles Ryan on the 2005 Worldwide Dungeons & Dragons Game Day
- Diesel, Williams, Moby, Lillard, Colbert: Shanafelt; The growing chic of geek
- Briggs; Duncan's unusual hobby and more unusual request
- Diesel contributed the introduction, and both Colbert and Wheaton page personal reflections to Johnson, et al.; 30 Years of Adventure
- Lees, Jennie. "Fear of Girls". Joystiq. Archived from the original on October 27, 2011.
- Haberman, Clyde. "When Dungeons & Dragons Set Off a 'Moral Panic'". The New York Times. Archived from the original on April 18, 2016. Retrieved April 18, 2016.
- Allston, Aaron (1992). Wrath of the Immortals. TSR. ISBN 1-56076-412-0.
- Appelcline, Shannon (2006). "Chaosium: 1975–present". A Brief History of Game. RPGnet. Retrieved August 13, 2007.
- Arneson, Dave (June–July 1979). "My Life and Role Playing". Different Worlds #3. Chaosium: 6–9.
- Birnbaum, Jon (July 20, 2004). "Gary Gygax Interview". Game Banshee. Archived from the original on February 3, 2009. Retrieved March 1, 2007. Archived copy of the article, taken 2009-07-13, page 2
- Bledsaw, Bob (July 1979). "From the Sorcerer's Scroll: What has Judges Guild done for Dungeons and Dragons". The Dragon #27. TSR Hobbies. IV (1): 10–11.
- Boucher, Geoff (May 5, 2008). "Jon Favreau is the action figure behind 'Iron Man'". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on May 16, 2008. Retrieved May 17, 2008.
- Briggs, Jerry (November 30, 1997). "Duncan's unusual hobby and more unusual request". San Antonio Express-News (Texas).
- Cardwell, Paul, Jr. (1994). "The Attacks on Role-Playing Games". Skeptical Inquirer. 18 (2): 157–165. Retrieved August 4, 2007.
- Carter, Michele; et al. (2007). Wizards Presents Races and Classes. Wizards of the Coast. ISBN 978-0-7869-4801-7.
- Cohen, David X.; Keeler, Ken; Rogers, Eric (writers) (May 5, 2005). Futurama, Anthology of Interest I (Television production). 20th Century Fox Television.
- Cook, Monte; Williams, Skip; Tweet, Jonathan (2003) . Dungeon Master's Guide v.3.5. revised by David Noonan, Rich Redman. Wizards of the Coast. ISBN 0-7869-2889-1.
- Cook, Monte. "The Open Game License as I See It, Part II". montecook.com. Archived from the original on April 17, 2007. Retrieved March 15, 2007.
- Currell, Latasha (September 1, 2004). "Dungeons and Dragons—30 Years and Going Strong". The Golden Gate [X]Press Online. The Journalism Department @ San Francisco State University. Archived from the original on November 4, 2004. Retrieved April 3, 2007.
- Dancey, Ryan (February 7, 2000). "Adventure Game Industry Market Research Summary (RPGs)". Wizards of the Coast. V1.0. Retrieved February 23, 2007.
- Darlington, Steven (August 1998). "A History of Role-Playing Part IV: Part Four: Hell and High Finance". Places to Go, People to be (4). Retrieved April 3, 2007.
- Darlington, Steven (November 1998). "A History of Role-Playing Part V: The Power and the Glory". Places to Go, People to be (5). Retrieved February 28, 2007.
- Darlington, Steven (June 1999). "A History of Role-Playing Part VIII: Dark Times". Places to Go, People to be (8). Retrieved February 28, 2007.
- Darlington, Steven (August 1999). "A History of Role-Playing Part IX: The End and The Beginning". Places to Go, People to be (9). Retrieved April 3, 2007.
- Drout, Michael D. C. (2007). J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: Scholarship and Critical Assessment. New York: Routledge. ISBN 978-0-415-96942-0.
- Cook, David (1989b). Player's Handbook. TSR. ISBN 0-88038-716-5.
- Cook, David (1995) [1989b]. Player's Handbook (Revised ed.). TSR. ISBN 0-7869-0329-5.
- DeVarque, Aardy R. "Literary Sources of D&D". Rec.games.frp.dnd FAQs. Archived from the original on December 9, 2007. Retrieved February 21, 2007.
- Fine, Gary Alan (2002). Shared Fantasy: Role Playing Games as Social Worlds. New York: University of Chicago Press. ISBN 0-226-24944-1.
- Gagne, Kenneth A. (April 27, 2001). "Moral Panics Over Youth Culture and Video Games". Worcester Polytechnic Institute. Retrieved August 27, 2007.
- Grady, RJ (August 4, 2004). "In Genre: THE DUNGEON". RPGnet. Retrieved April 5, 2007.
- Grigg, Robert (June 16–20, 2005). "Albert Goes Narrative Contracting". DiGRA 2005 Papers. Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada: Simon Fraser University. Retrieved August 12, 2007.
- Gygax, Gary (1979). Dungeon Masters Guide. TSR. ISBN 0-935696-02-4.
- Gygax, Gary (April 1976). "The Dungeons and Dragons Magic System". The Strategic Review. TSR Hobbies. II (2).
- Gygax, Gary; Arneson, Dave (1974). Dungeons & Dragons (3-Volume Set). TSR.
- Gygax, Gary (December 1978). "Dungeons & Dragons: What Is It and Where Is It Going?". The Dragon #21. TSR. III (8): 29–30. ISSN 1062-2101.
- Gygax, Gary (June 1979). "From the Sorcerer's Scroll: D&D, AD&D and Gaming". The Dragon #26. TSR Hobbies. III (12): 28–30. ISSN 1062-2101.
- Gygax, Gary. "Gygax FAQ". The Creative World of Gary Gygax. Archived from the original on January 28, 1999. Retrieved July 4, 2006.
- Gygax, Gary (1977). Monster Manual. TSR. ISBN 0-935696-00-8.
- Gygax, Gary (March 1985). "On the influence of J.R.R. Tolkien on the D&D and AD&D games". Dragon #95. TSR Hobbies, Inc. IX (10): 12–13. ISSN 0279-6848.
- Gygax, Gary (1978). Player's Handbook. TSR. ISBN 0-935696-01-6.
- Hallford, N.; Hallford, J. (2001). Swords & Circuitry: A Designer's Guide to Computer Role Playing Games (1st ed.). Thomson Course Technology PTR. p. 39. ISBN 0-7615-3299-4.
- Hately, Shaun (February 1999). "The Disappearance of James Dallas Egbert III (Part I)". Places to Go, People to be (6). Retrieved February 21, 2007.
- Heinsoo, Rob; Collins, Andy; Wyatt, James (2008). Player's Handbook. Wizards of the Coast. ISBN 978-0-7869-4867-3.
- Hite, Kenneth (March 30, 2006). "State of the Industry 2005: Another Such Victory Will Destroy Us". GamingReport.com. Archived from the original on February 4, 2009. Retrieved February 21, 2007.
- Johnson, Harold; et al. (2004). 30 Years of Adventure: A Celebration of Dungeons & Dragons. Wizards of the Coast. ISBN 0-7869-3498-0.
- Kuntz, Rob (April 1978). "Tolkien in Dungeons & Dragons". The Dragon #13. TSR Hobbies, Inc. II (7).
- Kushner, David (March 10, 2008). "Dungeon Master: The Life and Legacy of Gary Gygax". Wired.com. Archived from the original on November 13, 2012. Retrieved October 16, 2008.
- Leckart, Steven (June 26, 2007). "Ratatouille Star Patton Oswalt on Geeks vs. Nerds". Wired. 15 (7).
- McCuen, Mike (2002). "15mm Battlesystem Paladin 1994". Small Obsessions. Archived from the original on June 8, 2007. Retrieved March 17, 2007.
- Mead, Lawrence; Malcomson, Ian (2003). "Dungeons & Dragons FAQ". Wizards of the Coast. Retrieved October 3, 2008.
- Mentzer, Frank (1984). Dungeons & Dragons (Set 3: Companion Rules). TSR. ISBN 0-88038-340-2.
- Mentzer, Frank (1986). Dungeons & Dragons (Set 5: Immortal Rules). TSR. ISBN 0-88038-341-0.
- Mohan, Kim (1986). Wilderness Survival Guide. TSR. ISBN 0-88038-291-0.
- Moore, Jeff. "15mm Scale Fantasy Figures". Humberside Wargames Society. Archived from the original on April 6, 2007. Retrieved March 17, 2007.
- Mythmere. "Castles & Crusades Players Handbook (4.6 stars)". Mythmere's Wondrous Resource. Retrieved March 19, 2007.
- O'Connor, John (December 28, 1982). "TV: 'Mazes and Monsters,' Fantasy". The New York Times. Retrieved August 4, 2007.
- Pope, Thomas (March 25, 2004). "Grenadier Models, Advanced Dungeons and Dragons". The Stuff of Legends. Retrieved February 21, 2007.
- Pope, Thomas (February 27, 2000). "Ral Partha". The Stuff of Legends. Retrieved February 28, 2007.
- Pope, Thomas (November 5, 1999). "TSR". The Stuff of Legends. Retrieved February 28, 2007.
- Pramas, Chris (July 14, 2008). "Green Ronin and Fourth Edition D&D". Green Ronin. Archived from the original on December 10, 2008. Retrieved November 20, 2008.
- Pryor, Tony; Herring, Tony; Tweet, Jonathan; Richie, Norm (1993). Creative Campaigning. TSR. ISBN 1-56076-561-5.
- Rausch, Allen (August 19, 2004). "Dave Arneson Interview". GameSpy. Retrieved February 23, 2007.
- Rilstone, Andrew (1994). "Role-Playing Games: An Overview". The Oracle. Archived from the original on August 23, 2000. Retrieved April 4, 2007.
- Schend, Steven E.; Pickens, Jon; Watry, Dori, eds. (1991). Rules Cyclopedia. TSR. ISBN 1-56076-085-0.
- Schick, Lawrence (1991). Heroic Worlds: A History and Guide to Role-Playing Games. Amherst, New York: Prometheus Books. ISBN 0-87975-653-5.
- Scott, Richard. "Otherworld, The Citadel AD&D Miniatures Range". Otherworld Miniatures. Retrieved February 21, 2007.
- Shanafelt, Steve (November 2, 2005). "The growing chic of geek: How turning 30 made Dungeons & Dragons feel young again". Mountain Xpress. 12 (14). Retrieved August 4, 2007.
- Simon, Armando (October 1987). "Emotional Stability Pertaining to Dungeons and Dragons". Psychology in the Schools. 24 (4): 329–332. doi:10.1002/1520-6807(198710)24:4<329::AID-PITS2310240406>3.0.CO;2-9.
- Slavicsek, Bill (October 19, 2007). "Ampersand: Exciting News!". Wizards of the Coast. Archived from the original on June 19, 2009. Retrieved October 22, 2007.
- Slavicsek, Bill; Sernett, Matthew (2006). Dungeons & Dragons Basic Game. Wizards of the Coast. ISBN 0-7869-3944-3.
- Slavicsek, Bill; Baker, Richard (2005). Dungeons & Dragons for Dummies. Wiley Publishing. ISBN 0-7645-8459-6.
- Svensson, Peter (July 21, 2008). "Dungeons & Dragons reborn". Associated Press. Archived from the original on August 22, 2008. Retrieved November 17, 2008.
- Svitavsky, William (June 2001). "Geek Culture: An Annotated Interdisciplinary Bibliography". The Bulletin of Bibliography. 58 (2): 101–108. Archived from the original on April 14, 2013. Retrieved November 25, 2008.
- Thorn, Mike (June 9, 2006). "Review of Hackmaster 4th Edition". RPGnet. Retrieved March 19, 2007.
- Tonjes, Wayne (October 19, 2005). "Interview with Charles Ryan on the 2005 Worldwide Dungeons & Dragons Game Day". Gaming Report. Archived from the original on February 21, 2009. Retrieved August 4, 2007.
- Tweet, Jonathan (2004). Dungeons & Dragons Basic Game. Wizards of the Coast. ISBN 0-7869-3409-3.
- Tweet, Jonathan; Cook, Monte; Williams, Skip (2000). Player's Handbook. Wizards of the Coast. ISBN 0-7869-1550-1.
- Tweet, Jonathan; Cook, Monte; Williams, Skip (2003) . Player's Handbook v.3.5. revised by Collins, Andy. Wizards of the Coast. ISBN 0-7869-2886-7.
- Tweet, Jonathan (May 20, 2004). "What Are D&D Miniatures?". Wizards of the Coast. Retrieved February 28, 2007.
- Waldron, David (Spring 2005). "Role-Playing Games and the Christian Right: Community Formation in Response to a Moral Panic". Journal of Religion and Popular Culture. Department of Religious Studies and Anthropology, The University of Saskatchewan. IX. Archived from the original on February 4, 2012. Retrieved February 27, 2007.
- Ward, James M. (February 1990). "The Games Wizards: Angry Mothers From Heck (And what we do about them)". Dragon Magazine #154. XIV (9): 9. ISSN 0279-6848.
- Waskul, Dennis; Lust, Matt (2004). "Role-Playing and Playing Roles: The Person, Player, and Persona in Fantasy Role-Playing" (PDF). Caliber. 27 (3): 222–256. doi:10.1525/si.2004.27.3.333. Archived from the original (PDF) on December 4, 2012. Retrieved December 23, 2008.
- Waters, Darren (April 26, 2004). "What happened to Dungeons and Dragons?". BBC News Online. Retrieved February 21, 2007.
- Williams, J. P.; Hendricks, S. Q.; Winkler, W. K. (2006). Williams, J. Patrick; Hendricks, Sean Q.; Winkler, W. Keith (eds.). Gaming as Culture, Essays on Reality, Identity and Experience in Fantasy Games. McFarland & Company: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-7864-2436-2.
- Williams, Skip (1995). Dungeon Master Option: High Level Campaigns. TSR. ISBN 0-7869-0168-3.
- Williams, Skip; Tweet, Jonathan; Cook, Monte (2000). Monster Manual. Wizards of the Coast. ISBN 0-7869-1552-8.
- Unknown author
- "Archive of List of Origins Award Winners". Academy of Adventure Gaming Arts and Design. 2006. Archived from the original on January 25, 2007. Retrieved February 22, 2007. – select year on right of page.
- "Hall of Fame". Academy of Adventure Gaming Arts and Design. 2006. Archived from the original on June 26, 2007. Retrieved July 6, 2007.
- "List of Winners". Academy of Adventure Gaming Arts & Design. 2001. Archived from the original on August 30, 2007. Retrieved September 1, 2007.
- "Hall of Fame". Games Magazine Online. 2007. Archived from the original on August 12, 2007. Retrieved August 13, 2007.
- "Dungeon Crawl Classics". Goodman Games. Archived from the original on March 24, 2007. Retrieved March 20, 2007.
- "D20 Products with 3rd Edition Rules, 1st Edition Feel". Necromancer Games. 2007. Archived from the original on August 7, 2007. Retrieved August 21, 2007.
- "Paizo Publishing Announces the Pathfinder RPG". Paizo Publishing. March 18, 2008. Archived from the original on December 6, 2008. Retrieved November 21, 2008.
- "How Dungeon & Dragons shaped the modern videogame". PC Gamer. Future Publishing Limited. February 8, 2007. Retrieved April 3, 2007.
- "The d20 System". Wizards of the Coast. Retrieved August 14, 2007.
- "Dungeons & Dragons Flashes 4-ward at Gen Con" (PDF). Wizards of the Coast. August 16, 2007. Retrieved August 19, 2007.
- "The History of TSR". Wizards of the Coast. Archived from the original on September 24, 2008. Retrieved August 20, 2005.
- "What Is D&D?". Wizards of the Coast. Retrieved February 21, 2007.
- "Wizards of the Coast at Gen Con!". Wizards of the Coast. 2007. Retrieved August 18, 2007.
- "Mike Myers". Inside the Actors' Studio. Season 7. Episode 9. February 4, 2001.
- "Countdown to 3rd Edition: Feats and Fighters". Dragon #270. Wizards of the Coast. XXIV (11): 30–31. April 2000. ISSN 1062-2101.
- "Interview with Dave Arneson". Pegasus. Judges Guild (1). April–May 1981. Archived from the original on March 21, 2009. Retrieved February 23, 2007.
- Rouchart, Sandy; Aylett, Ruth (2003). Rist, Thomas (ed.). Solving the Narrative Paradox in VEs — Lessons from RPGs. Intelligent Virtual Agents: 4th International Workshop. Springer. ISBN 978-3-540-20003-1.
- Barrowcliffe, Mark (2008). The Elfish Gene: Dungeons, Dragons and Growing Up Strange. Soho Press. ISBN 978-1-56947-601-7.
- Bebergal, Peter (November 15, 2004). "How 'Dungeons' Changed the World". The Boston Globe. The New York Times Company. Retrieved January 4, 2008.
- Edwards, Ron. "A Hard Look at Dungeons and Dragons". The Forge. Retrieved February 23, 2007. An essay on the early history of the D&D hobby.
- Ewalt, David M. (2013). Of Dice and Men: The Story of Dungeons & Dragons and the People Who Play It. New York: Scribner. ISBN 978-1-4516-4050-2. OCLC 800031925. Includes a suggested reading list on pages 255–256.
- Fannon, Sean Patrick. The Fantasy Roleplaying Gamer's Bible, 2nd Edition. Obsidian Studios, 1999. ISBN 0-9674429-0-7
- Garfield, Richard (2007). "Dungeons & Dragons". In Lowder, James (ed.). Hobby Games: The 100 Best. Green Ronin Publishing. pp. 86–89. ISBN 978-1-932442-96-0.
- Gilsdorf, Ethan (2009). Fantasy Freaks and Gaming Geeks. Lyons Press. ISBN 978-1-59921-480-1.
- Gygax, Gary. Roleplaying Mastery. New York: Perigee, 1987. ISBN 0-399-51293-4.
- Gygax, Gary. Master of the Game. New York: Perigee, 1989. ISBN 0-399-51533-X.
- Miller, John J. "I Was a Teenage Half-Orc", National Review Online, October 15, 2004.
- Miller, John J. "Dungeons & Dragons In a Digital World", The Wall Street Journal, July 1, 2008.
- Mitchell-Smith, Ilan (June 16, 2009). "Chapter 11: Racial Determinism in the Interlocking Economies of Power and Violence in Dungeons & Dragons". In Carley, Robert (ed.). Coopting Culture. Lexington/Rowman & Littlefield Books. pp. 207–224. ISBN 978-0739125977.
- Mona, Erik. "From the Basement to the Basic Set: The Early Years of Dungeons & Dragons". The MIT Press. Retrieved May 6, 2009.
- Peterson, Jon. Playing at the World: A History of Simulating Wars, People and Fantastic Adventures, from Chess to Role-Playing Games. San Diego: Unreason, 2012. ISBN 978-0-615-64204-8.
- Pulsipher, Lew (1983). "Introduction to Dungeons & Dragons, Parts I–V". The Best of White Dwarf. Games Workshop (Articles Volume II): 10–18.
- Slavicsek, Bill; Baker, Richard (2006). Dungeon Master for Dummies. Wiley Publishing. ISBN 0-471-78330-7.
- Wagner, James (March 29, 2000). "Opening the dungeon". Salon. Archived from the original on March 12, 2005. An article about the conflict over the proprietary or open-source nature of Dungeons & Dragons.
- Studies about fantasy roleplaying games – a list of academic articles about RPGs
- Gamespy's 30th Anniversary of Dungeons & Dragons special
- Official website
- Dungeons & Dragons at Curlie
- Off Book (June 20, 2013). "Dungeons & Dragons and the Influence of Tabletop RPGs". PBS.