The Hobbit meets Moneyball in this definitive book on Dungeons &
Dragons—from its origins and rise to cultural prominence to the
continued effects on popular culture today.
HERE, THERE BE DRAGONS.
Ancient red dragons with 527 hit points, +44 to attack, and a
20d10 breath weapon, to be specific. In the world of fantasy
role-playing, those numbers describe a winged serpent with
immense strength and the ability to spit fire. There are few
beasts more powerful—just like there are few games more important
than Dungeons & Dragons.
Even if you’ve never played Dungeons & Dragons, you probably know
someone who has: the game has had a profound influence on our
culture. Released in 1974—decades before the Internet and social
media—Dungeons & Dragons inspired one of the original nerd
subcultures, and is still revered by millions of fans around the
world. Now the authoritative history and magic of the game are
revealed by an award-winning journalist and lifelong D&D player.
In Of Dice and Men, David Ewalt recounts the development of
Dungeons & Dragons from the game’s roots on the battlefields of
ancient Europe, through the hysteria that linked it to satanic
rituals and teen suicides, to its apotheosis as father of the
modern video-game industry. As he chronicles the surprising
history of the game’s origins (a history largely unknown even to
hardcore players) and examines D&D’s profound impact, Ewalt
weaves laser-sharp subculture analysis with his own present-day
gaming experiences. An enticing blend of history, journalism,
narrative, and memoir, Of Dice and Men sheds light on America’s
most popular (and widely misunderstood) form of collaborative