Why you should play D&D

D&D growing in popularity: is it worth it?

Artist’s depiction of the D&D plane, Arborea.

Imagine stepping into your favorite world of fantasy or science fiction, embarking on an epic quest, like the heroes of old mythology, on an adventure of world-impacting proportions.

Dungeons & Dragons is one of the only mediums that allows a person to truly experience the emotions of such a colossal scale. With a small group of adventurers, slowly growing in power, wealth, and skill, your Dungeons and Dragons character becomes someone that you want to succeed. Like watching a protagonist on a movie screen, you grow more and more attached and invested in the progress of your PC (player-character) and you move freely through an adventure, one session at a time.

Benefits of D&D

Dungeons and Dragons really does allow you to hone a wide variety of skills, many of which you didn’t even realize you used in everyday life. For instance, D&D teaches you how to be a storyteller, whether you are running the game or just playing a part in the world as a player-character. This game allows you to try out new solutions to simple problems, and really improves any player’s intuition. You will certainly learn how to put yourself in the mindset of others, as the game constantly forces you to get inside the head of your character to determine how they would react in a given situation.

On the other side of the game, character optimization allows a more analytical player to join in the fun. As your character overcomes more obstacles, they are rewarded with experience points, leading to a leveling system that gives your characters new features and equipment. Whether you are the type of person who likes to sit back and problem-solve before an encounter, or someone who charges headlong into danger, Dungeons & Dragons will satisfy your desires. The game allows you to express yourself and your passions in a way that few other things can, through the story that you and your player-character tell. Simultaneously, you are able to flex your creative muscles through acting via role playing, exploring ancient and forgotten realms, or customizing the background and physical appearance of your character as you progress through the adventure.

How To Play

Another enticing feature of D&D is the sheer simplicity of the gameplay. Unlike expensive video games or non-interactive movies, all you need for this game are six dice, and people to play with (and even then it’s very simple to find both online dice rollers and groups of online D&D players). Even if you don’t have a leader of the group who volunteers to be Dungeon Master, there are countless pre-made adventures ready to use on the D&D official website. D&D in general has gotten a surge of popularity in the past year or so, which means the community (and its incredible user-created content) is rapidly expanding. The Dungeons and Dragons community is almost always welcoming of newcomers into the game.

Another pro for Dungeons & Dragons is how easy (and quick) it is to learn, especially with the aid of the Player’s Handbook and the Dungeon Master’s Guide, two of the core rulebooks for the game. After five editions of fine-tuning and revising, the Dungeons & Dragons experience can turn out truly amazing even for beginner players. One of the most prominent examples of this is the High Rollers Dnd group on YouTube and Twitch. They started out as novices at the game (only two out of the five members had even played before), but they continued to stream it on Twitch and upload it on YouTube, and as they played more, they improved tremendously, and their audience grew respectively. So, even if you don’t have the time or capability to invest in starting your own group to play with, I still highly recommend finding a game to watch online, because the reward of the incredible storytelling is almost always worth it.

The Dungeon Master of the High Rollers group explains getting started in D&D in a interview on Dnd Beyond: “It seems scary at start and making sure that [the players] have those kind of experiences so that they feel… you’re working together to tell the story.” The best way to get into D&D, as with many long projects, is just to start doing it, and it won’t be long before you fall in love with the game, the characters, the narrative, and the world. As long as you have someone who can share the same passion as you for this game, the result will be fantastic, no matter how hard the journey is along the way. No matter where the adventure takes you and your character, there will always be much more to explore.