Of Dice and Men

Of Dice and Men

The Story of Dungeons & Dragons and the People Who Play It

Book - 2013
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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.


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 entertainment.
Publisher: New York : Scribner, a Division of Simon & Schuster, Inc., [2013]
ISBN: 9781451640502
Branch Call Number: 793.93 EWA
Characteristics: vii, 276 pages ; 24 cm.


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Feb 09, 2018

DnD's history, mixed in with the author's experience with the game... I'd say maybe 60% of this book is just the author being a massive nerd about DnD (but this is a positive - his enthusiasm is addicting).

Aug 18, 2016

If you are a long time fan of Dungeons & Dragons or just a RPG fan you will love this book. It is a combination of the history of the game, the authors journey and his campaign.

Mar 27, 2016

Of Dice and Men by David Ewalt provided a helpful and seemingly balanced history of Dungeons and Dragons, prompting me to dig into some of the drama between B&D creators Arneson and Gygax. My biases include enjoying role-playing games and a preference for open-source over proprietary.

Apr 11, 2014

This book starts out as an interesting history of the origins of Dungeons and Dragons, and I recommend the first half of the book for anyone not familiar with the subject. Unfortunately the second half of the book takes a turn for the worse as we hear the author's self-indulgent coming of age story mixed with promotion of the latest version of D&D.

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