D&D General D&D In The Mainstream - Again!

With the latest mainstream article* (this time the New York Times for the third time!) from a major news outlet covering the resurgence of D&D, I thought I'd take a quick look at similar articles which have appeared on the radar of major newspapers and broadcasters recently, including The Guardian, the BBC, the Washington Post, and more!

*Note, this article was written in Nov 2019, but I intend to update the list below as more such articles appear. Last updated Sep 2022.


Image from NYT, depicting live-streamed D&D show "Rivals of Waterdeep"

Just yesterday, the Washington Examiner joined in. Forbes also covers the game fairly regularly. It's pretty amazing that this hobby is now appearing in mainstream media on a regular basis. There's a major mainstream article every couple of months now, it seems. The articles are usually very similar -- the surprising revelation of the "rise" or "resurgence" of D&D, and reports that D&D is now 'out of the basement', a few words from somebody at WotC about how the current year is the best year yet, and perhaps an interview with a gamer or two explaining why they think D&D is resurgent now, as well as quotes from a celebrity gamer.

The New York Times was surprised about the popularity of D&D twice this year - this week on D&D's resurgence, and back in April on "why the cool kids are playing Dungeons & Dragons". The Times looks at the strangeness of D&D becoming cool, while the Washington Post wonders how D&D became more popular than ever. IGN explains the recent surge in popularity, and the Guardian tells us we're no longer nerds because D&D is cool now (update: and then again in November 2019, July 2019, May 202, and then in September 2022). The BBC covers the phenomenon, as does Australia's ABC.

It'll be fun to see what comes next, if D&D's resurgence becomes no longer 'news' but accepted fact, and the outlets get to report on more focused aspects of the hobby -- hopefully the coverage won't die down. It's come some way since 2004 when the BBC asked "What happened to Dungeons & Dragons?" They've certainly got to stop being surprised at the resurgence soon! (*edit -- as of July 2022, nope, they're still surprised!)

UPDATE -- January 2023, during the height of "OGL-gate", D&D has featured heavily. I have made a separate OGL-gate list here.

With a bit of Googling, you can also uncover a ton of local news outlets which have covered the game, such as the Liverpool Echo, the Oxford Observer, the Washington Examiner, or the Chicago Daily Herald, as well as many comic book and general geek sites. D&D is everywhere! Even the Cyprus Mail!

I'm sure there are more! Those are just the ones I remember off the top of my head.

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Aaron L

We got one!

The Guardian: Dungeons & Dragons in lockdown: as my universe contracts, this game expands whole worlds (May 19, 2020)

Nice way to exemplify one of the benefits of playing the game! You're never really stuck inside anywhere when you're playing D&D!

A group of my friends and I (actually the very same people whom I originally started playing the game with decades ago) have been playing a campaign over Skype for almost two years now, since half of them moved away years ago and we can't meet up in person to play anymore.

And they are still the very best D&D players I have ever had the privilege of gaming with.

One of them once portrayed the greatest example of having an ability score reduced that I have ever seen; it was back about 15 years ago in a v3.5 game, and he was playing a high Charisma Cleric. He had 5 points of his Charisma drained by some kind of monster or other, and he immediately went from being a bright-eyed, enthusiastic, talkative, and assertive man to being a sullen, furtive, gloomy, and diffident guy who barely spoke unless prompted. We got him fixed up by the end of the game, but for the duration until then it was (appropriately!) like he was playing a completely different character, all because his Charisma was cut by almost a third. It was a genuinely awe-inspiring example of role-playing that I will never forget.


I also feel like game is getting a lot more diverse. I joined a local facebook group (two, actually) for D&D, and one of them, I actually facetimed with a girl who was trying to learn how to be a DM. She was A) a girl, and B) Asian. Which, from a historical perspective on the typical demographic of the game, was pretty surprising to me.

I also found a post by a woman who had 4 other female players (one of them trans) and was looking for a female (preferred) GM for their group. So, that was also pretty interesting. I also scheduled an event over MS Teams to teach people some tips and tricks on how to be a great game master. I figured I've been doing this 30 years, I've got some wisdom to impart. Only had 2 people join, unfortunately, but one of them was a young, suburban housewife. So, that was interesting.


Guide of Modos
metro.co.uk said:
...and for those with less artistic talents (D&D) can provide a much-needed creative outlet.
Ouch. I'll take it, but I'd rather watch a clip of voice-actors role-playing than comedians.

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