News Archive | 1/31/2014
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D&D: Helping Celebrate 40 Years

T his year, Dungeons & Dragons celebrates its 40th anniversary. In that time, imagine how much treasure has been plundered, tales spun, and towns spared the wrath of vengeful dragons over the course of four decades (not to mention, how many jokes told around the table, sodas consumed, dice rolled, and gaming sessions held). In fact, what better way to commemorate 40 years of adventure than to face off with one of the most iconic and deadly dragons—Tiamat—in D&D’s next action-packed storyline taking place later this year?

As we head into the biggest and most exciting year in Dungeons & Dragons history, we can’t help but reflect on the important role D&D has played for so very many of us.

To help celebrate this banner year, we're inviting our community to submit anniversary salutations wishing D&D a happy 40th. Have an epic story about facing off against an iconic D&D monster? Record a short video telling us about it. Still have your first character sheet? Scan it and send it in. Do you have a lucky d20 that saved the party from the red dragon? Well, we won't ask you to give up the die itself but send a pic of it in action.

Post your salutation to the official D&D Facebook page or link to it on our D&D Twitter channel using #DnD40. Don't worry about film-fest worthy videos or museum quality art. Just get your smart phone and scanner and help share the D&D love!

From Ed Greenwood:

From Richard Lee Byers:

Plus, Richard Lee Byers contemplates the evolution of the world's premiere RPG.

From Erin M. Evans:

From Troy Denning:

The first time I played Dungeons & Dragons was in a college dorm, in the fall of 1980. I had just gotten off the team bus after a four-hour trip from a game in Iowa, and I was exhausted, bruised, and so sore I had trouble walking down the hall. I had one thing on my mind, and that involved a pillow and not moving a muscle for the next 10 hours.

Then I passed an open room, and one of my dorm-mates called out to ask if we’d won. When I stuck my head in to answer, I found him and another friend sitting on the floor with a hand-drawn map, three saddle-stapled pamphlets, and some funny-looking dice. When I asked the predictable question, they suggested I just sit down for a while, because teaching me to play would be easier than explaining it.

I rolled up a character that any college football player would be proud of (Strength 17, Agility 16, Wisdom . . . uh, nevermind) and named him Vanka-Tar. By dawn the next morning, Vanka-Tar had ridden a blue dragon, tangled with a fat-headed magician name Modok (yeah—that should have told me something right there), and lost a couple of limbs trying to jump through a prismatic sphere. Fortunately, D&D had this thing called a regeneration spell, and I was hooked.

It was 37 years ago, and I still remember that first session like it was yesterday. I also remember game films the next day, when an ill-timed yawn had Coach chewing me out, yelling, "You stayed up all night playing WHAT, Denning?"

I remember thinking at the time that was the most fun I’d ever had playing a game. I didn’t know then it would also be a life-changing experience, and one of the smartest things I ever did in college.

—Troy Denning

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