Lore & Legends Sheds New Light on D&D 5E

Michael Witwer, Kyle Newman, Jon Peterson, and Sam Witwer, authors of Dungeons & Dragons Art & Arcana, have written a new book, Dungeons & Dragons Lore & Legends

They're back! Michael Witwer, Kyle Newman, Jon Peterson, and Sam Witwer, authors of Dungeons & Dragons Art & Arcana, have written a new book, Dungeons & Dragons Lore & Legends. Like Art & Arcana, Lore & Legends is a hefty hardcover that would probably do club-like in combat, but L&L focuses on 5E whereas A&A examined the overall evolution of D&D from the beginning to 2018.

DnD Lore and Legends cover.jpg

Instead of a foreword by well-known D&D enthusiast and advocate Joe Manganiello like A&A had, L&L boasts a foreword by Tom Morello from Rage Against the Machine and Audioslave. That turns out to be a logical transition since Morello explains that he got back into D&D thanks to Manganiello's famous celebrity D&D campaign. And, like many parents, Morello introduced the game to his children, making his foreward a microcosm of the D&D player's experience over the years.

L&L is a visual guide to D&D with an abundance of art from the the game as well as behind-the-scenes photos and information. But it's not all about the visuals, despite the book's subtitle “A Visual Celebration of the Fifth Edition of the World's Greatest Roleplaying Game.” L&L has plenty of prose content to answer two core questions: “How did an analog game nearly a half century old become a star in a digital world? Why did it suddenly connect with our cultural moment?”

L&L takes readers through the work to create a new edition of D&D that merged the best of prior editions along with new ideas, such as the elegant advantage/disadvantage mechanic, along with the challenges of running the largest game playtest to date. The history continues through each 5E book release, with insight as to why each one was done when and the design goals for each. It also examines how the D&D design team constantly experiments with ways to help DMs run a better a game, such as including adventure flow charts.

The development of actual play videos is also featured to showcase how it contributed to the popularity of the game. Instead of the tradition of players teaching players, now the D&D curious could watch one of a host of AP videos to get a feel for how the game works, learn DM tips, and more.
DnD Lore and Legends special edition cover.jpg
As a geek about creative projects of all kinds, my favorite part of the book is the behind-the-scenes information. For example, when the actual play game that became Acquisitions Incorporated was first pitched to Chris Perkins, he thought that no one would ever want to watch other people play D&D. Little did he know.

Appropriate for a visual guide, full-page art abounds along with photos of convention appearances, celebrities involved in 5E D&D projects, merchandise and more. Concept art is also abundant, such as the evolution of the dragon ampersand by Richard Witters. It's rather fascinating and a bit surprising as to how it turned into the familiar 5E D&D logo.

If you – or someone you're buying holiday gifts for – is a D&D fan, Dungeons & Dragons Lore & Legends is a good gift. That's especially true for those who are fans of 5E in particular, though the passion it conveys for D&D isn't limited to a single edition. It's a fun book packed with sidebars about D&D lore so whether you're new to D&D or or a long-time fan, it has something for you.

Dungeons & Dragons Lore & Legends is available now as a standard hardcover (MSRP $50) and ebook (MSRP $14.99). A special edition boxed book and ephemera set (MSRP $130) will be released on November 28.
 

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Beth Rimmels

Beth Rimmels





Parmandur

Book-Friend
Art and Arcana is a beautiful book that celebrates the long history of D&D.

I am not sure 5E alone "deserves" as big and expansive a treatment, but I am sure it will sell just fine regardless.
Well, two poonts:

- They have the art pieces to justify it. Art & Arcana had 700+ pieces of D&D art: thus has 900+. So it has the volume of art to justify an art book, nigh 100 pieces of art per year.

- More people have played 5E than earlier editions.
 

Art and Arcana is a beautiful book that celebrates the long history of D&D.

I am not sure 5E alone "deserves" as big and expansive a treatment, but I am sure it will sell just fine regardless.

As on if it "deserves" a big book of congratulation of it self? Well it made WOTc a ton a money so why not put out a book.

Hopefully they have to guts to have a chapter on how they played us all for year teasing Spelljammer just to sell us a half baked cash grab.
 

darjr

I crit!
Saw them at Gameholecon! Great panel. Got some photos too.

I asked Chris Perkins what it was like during the launch, when they sold out of PHB's so fast. He said he knew it was going on, that people were extremely happy and surprised, but he was too busy to really remember much else. Which is essential Chris Perkins!

I didn't know Michael has fiction too!
 

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Reynard

Legend
Supporter
- More people have played 5E than earlier editions.
For sure. 5E IS D&D to most people now. And that's fine. Cool, even. And with the 5E SRD out there in the CC, it will remain that way for a while. I don't begrudge WotC their success or new fans 'their" D&D. I even like 5E, except when i don't.

I was just suggesting that this book was not the same kind of book as Art and Arcana. This strikes me as self congratulatory marketing, rather than honoring history and all the people that made 5E possible over the 40 years prior, which is what A&A did.
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
For sure. 5E IS D&D to most people now. And that's fine. Cool, even. And with the 5E SRD out there in the CC, it will remain that way for a while. I don't begrudge WotC their success or new fans 'their" D&D. I even like 5E, except when i don't.

I was just suggesting that this book was not the same kind of book as Art and Arcana. This strikes me as self congratulatory marketing, rather than honoring history and all the people that made 5E possible over the 40 years prior, which is what A&A did.
Honestly, I don't see much difference between the two concepts. Both are marketing brand-building exercises.
 

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