Dungeons & Dragons-related products

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The Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) fantasy role-playing game has spawned many related products, including magazines, films and video games.

Magazines[edit]

Dragon Magazine, #342 (Paizo, 2006)

In 1975, TSR began publishing The Strategic Review. At the time, role-playing games were still seen as a subgenre of the wargaming industry, and the magazine was designed not only to support D&D and TSR's other games, but also to cover wargaming in general. In short order, however, the popularity and growth of D&D made it clear that the game had not only separated itself from its wargaming origins, but had launched an entirely new industry unto itself. The following year, after only seven issues, TSR cancelled The Strategic Review and replaced it in 1976 with The Dragon (later Dragon Magazine).

Although Dragon Magazine was originally designed to support the role-playing industry in general, it has always been primarily a house organ for TSR's games with a particular focus on D&D. Most of the magazine's articles provide supplementary material for the game, including new races, classes, spells, traps, monsters, skills, and rules. Other articles will provide tips and suggestions for players and DMs. The magazine has also published a number of well-known, gamer-oriented comic strips over the years, including Wormy, SnarfQuest, Yamara, Knights of the Dinner Table, Nodwick, Dork Tower, and The Order of the Stick.

Between 1983 and 1985, TSR's UK branch published Imagine Magazine. It featured similar content to Dragon, focusing on D&D and Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (AD&D). Imagine featured a monthly series of articles about a new campaign world, Pelinore, which were later continued in the non-TSR magazine Game Master. Some material that originated in Imagine was eventually incorporated into Unearthed Arcana.

In 1986, TSR launched a new magazine to complement Dragon. Dungeon Adventures, published bimonthly, published nothing but adventure modules for Dungeon Masters. While Dungeon now publishes other kinds of material as well, Dungeons & Dragons adventures remain its main focus.

While many other magazines have partially or fully devoted themselves to supporting D&D, Dragon and Dungeon remain the only two official publications for the game. In 2002, Wizards of the Coast licensed the two magazines to Paizo Publishing. Publication of both magazines then ceased in September 2007 as the owning company opted for an online model, citing a downturn in the market for low-circulation specialty and hobby magazines.[citation needed] In total, there were 359 Dragon issues and 150 Dungeon issues released in print.[1] The final 3rd Edition issue of Dragon was #362, and the final 3rd Edition issue of Dungeon was #153. The online version of the magazines are up to issue 408 and 201 respectively as of April 2012.

Films and TV[edit]

A popular D&D animated television series was produced in 1983. The cartoon was based upon the concept of a small group of young adults and children who get transported to a D&D-based fantasy realm by riding a magical roller coaster. When they arrive, they are given potent magical weapons and must survive against the chromatic dragon Tiamat and a power-hungry nemesis called Venger. They are assisted in each episode by a gnome-like creature called Dungeon Master and a baby unicorn named Uni.[2]

A D&D movie was released in 2000 to largely negative critical reception.[3] Dungeons & Dragons: Wrath of the Dragon God, a made-for-TV sequel, was first aired on the Sci-Fi Channel on October 8, 2005, receiving better critical reception, and was released on February 7, 2006 on DVD.[4] This sequel is also known by the alternate title Dungeons & Dragons 2: The Elemental Might.[5] A third film was also shot in 2011, Dungeons & Dragons: The Book of Vile Darkness. Warner Bros. has acquired rights to make a film based on Dungeons & Dragons, using a script written by David Leslie Johnson and will be produced by Roy Lee and Courtney Solomon.[6] However, Hasbro and Wizards of the Coast has sued Sweetpea Entertainment, producer of the first three D&D movies, over its movie deal with Warner claiming that the movie rights (TV and feature) have expired.[7]

In 2003, a computer animated motion picture entitled Scourge of Worlds: A Dungeons & Dragons Adventure was produced for DVD, featuring the iconic characters (Regdar, Mialee, and Lidda) created for the 3rd Edition. This is an interactive movie that asks viewers to decide what actions the heroes should take at crucial points in the story, allowing hundreds of different story-telling combinations. A special edition was released later that included even more choices, two additional endings, the making of the Scourge of Worlds, and the original (linear) version of film.

The official Dragonlance Chronicles animated movie, Dragonlance: Dragons of Autumn Twilight was released straight to video in January 2008. The film stars the voices of Michael Rosenbaum as Tanis, Kiefer Sutherland as Raistlin, Lucy Lawless as Goldmoon, and Michelle Trachtenberg as Tika.[citation needed]

Computer and video games[edit]

Baldur's Gate (1998), a role-playing video game based on Dungeons & Dragons

Many unique digital games had been released and sold under the D&D license. A significant number of these games were published by Strategic Simulations, Inc. (SSI). Most, but not all, are role-playing video games that use rules derived from some version of the D&D rules. Many of the games were released on multiple platforms, including personal computers, consoles, and handheld devices (including mobile phones). Notable titles include:

Title Year Description
Dungeons & Dragons Computer Labyrinth Game 1980 The first D&D game marketed for public consumption that contained digital electronics. This is a board game/video game hybrid, with a D&D table-top look-and-feel. Dungeon walls, monsters, and traps manifest themselves as series of beeps from the internal computer.
Dungeons & Dragons Computer Fantasy Game 1981 A small (2" x 3" x .5") electronic game using the mechanics of Hunt the Wumpus. It used an LCD screen and various sound effects to inform the player of different in-game circumstances, such as proximity to pits, bats, the magic arrow or the dragon.
Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Cartridge 1982 Designed for the Intellivision, the first video game based licensed under the D&D license.
Pool of Radiance 1988 The first D&D video game. Designed by SSI, the same game engine would be used to develop ten more D&D games, the Gold Box series. It was "remade" by UbiSoft in 2001 under the name Pool of Radiance: Ruins of Myth Drannor.
Eye of the Beholder 1990 The first in a trilogy of popular games designed by Westwood Studios and published by SSI in the early 1990s.
Neverwinter Nights 1991
to
1997
Developed by Stormfront Studios and was one of the first graphical MMORPG, paving the way for other games including Ultima Online and EverQuest. The game was a major hit, and the name and settings formed the basis for the Neverwinter Nights video game (see below).
Tower of Doom 1993 Two beat 'em up/action RPG hybrid series by Capcom.
Shadow over Mystara 1996
Birthright: The Gorgon's Alliance 1996 Developed by Synergistic Software, a subsidiary of Sierra Entertainment and was an innovative mix of strategy and role-playing gaming, and featured realistic (for the time) 3D graphics. Unfortunately, the game was not a major success due to the decreased popularity of D&D inspired games at that time.
Baldur's Gate 1998 From Interplay Entertainment, was developed by Bioware and was the first D&D video game to use Bioware's Infinity Engine. It met with critical success and was followed by several more D&D games from Bioware, including an expansion pack, Baldur's Gate: Tales of the Sword Coast, and one sequel, Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn, and its expansion, Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal.
Planescape: Torment. Icewind Dale and Icewind Dale II 1999
to
2002
Developed by Interplay's Black Isle Studios and also used the Bioware Infinity Engine.
Neverwinter Nights 2002 This game from Bioware included the Aurora toolset that allows users to create custom modules. Several expansion modules were sold by the distributor.
Neverwinter Nights 2 2006
Dungeons & Dragons: Daggerdale 2011 Developed by Bedlam Games and published by Atari, set to release as a downloadable game for PSN/XBLA

Novels[edit]

Quag Keep (DAW Books, 1979), the first published novel to be set in a specific D&D campaign setting.

Several hundred novels have been published based upon Dungeons & Dragons.

2nd Edition Novels[edit]

Dragon Strike[edit]

Iconic Character[edit]

Knights of the Silver Dragon[edit]

Penhaligon[edit]

2010 relaunch[edit]

The Abyssal Plague[edit]

Comics[edit]

Tempest's Gate: Born of Fire by Sean Smith (Kenzer & Co., 2001)

During the 1980s and 1990s, DC Comics published several licensed D&D comics, including Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, Dragonlance, Forgotten Realms, and Spelljammer.[8] Also during the 1980s, one-page "mini-comics" appeared as advertisements in both Marvel and DC publications, always ending with the line "To Be Continued..."

After the release of the 3rd Edition, KenzerCo, better known for the popular gaming comic Knights of the Dinner Table, secured the licensing rights to produce official D&D comics. Using the license, they produced a number of different mini-series. One notable mini-series for this comic line entitled Tempest's Gate was authored by Sean Smith. It featured memorable iconic characters of D&D such as Zed Kraken, a powerful and influential magus.[1]

In 2002, Iron Hammer Graphics published the single-issue comic Vecna: Hand of the Revenent. In 2005, the license passed to Devil's Due Productions. Starting in June of that year, Devil's Due began releasing official adaptations of D&D tie-in novels, starting with Salvatore's Dark Elf Trilogy.

As webcomics grew, many were created around the idea of D&D, some of them even going as far as publishing actual books. Amongst the more popular ones are Rich Burlew's The Order of the Stick and Tarol Hunts's Goblins. The game has also been seen in several FoxTrot comic strips over the years played by Jason and his best friend Marcus.

In 2010, IDW Publishing started publishing an ongoing Dungeons & Dragons comic based on the 4th Edition core setting.[9] In 2011 they also plan to release a limited series based on the Dark Sun campaign setting, as well as another series, Forgotten Realms: The Legend of Drizzt: Neverwinter Tales, written by R.A. Salvatore and based on his famous D&D character, Drizzt Do'Urden.[9]

Board games[edit]

Several board games have been sold either under the Dungeons & Dragons trademark or in association with it:

Toys[edit]

From 1983–1984, LJN produced a line of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons action figures.[10]

Software[edit]

Soundtrack[edit]

The first official soundtrack to Dungeons & Dragons was produced when Wizards of the Coast teamed up with Midnight Syndicate, producing the 24 track album Dungeons & Dragons.[11] The album was released on August 12, 2003, and received positive reviews from both the gaming and music community.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Staff (2007-04-19). "Paizo Publishing to Cease Publication of DRAGON and DUNGEON". Wizards of the Coast. Retrieved 2007-09-17. 
  2. ^ John Clute, John Grant (1999). The Encyclopedia of Fantasy. St. Martin's Press. p. 302. ISBN 0-312-19869-8. 
  3. ^ Ebert, Roger (2002). Roger Ebert's Movie Yearbook 2003. Andrews McMeel Publishing. ISBN 0-7407-2691-9. 
  4. ^ Nelson, Resa (March 9, 2006). "Dungeons & Dragons: Wrath of the Dragon God". Sci Fi.com. Archived from the original on 2007-08-08. Retrieved 2007-09-17. 
  5. ^ Also known as: Dungeons & Dragons 2: The Elemental Might (IMDB)
  6. ^ Warner Bros. Acquires Rights To Make ‘Dungeons & Dragons’ Movie
  7. ^ Eriq Gardner (May 14, 2013). "Hasbro Sues to Stop Warner Bros. 'Dungeons and Dragons' Film". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved June 3, 2013. 
  8. ^ "Dungeons & Dragons FAQ". Wizards of the Coast. Archived from the original on 2008-10-03. Retrieved 2008-10-03. 
  9. ^ a b "Dungeons & Dragons". IDW Publishing. Retrieved 2011-01-22. 
  10. ^ http://www.toyarchive.com/Dungeons&Dragons/Figures/ActionFigures.html
  11. ^ "Midnight Syndicate Makes D&D Music". Wizards of the Coast website. Wizards of the Coast. 2003-04-21. Retrieved 2007-07-04.