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What Exactly is Dungeons and Dragons

Dungeons and Dragons is a fantasy role playing game, generally played amongst friends, or other small groups of people. Dungeons and Dragons, which is often just called D&D can be a lot of fun to play, and is an amazing tool for building strong, lasting friendships with other people. The game is played with a single person being the Dungeon Master (or DM). The DM is the narrator, who sets up the game and then manages the world in which the game takes place. All of the other players play a single character, which will interact with the fantasy world that has been set by the Dungeon Master.

What Equipment Do I Need to Play Dungeons and Dragons?

The equipment you will need for Dungeons and Dragons can start out simple, and can grow as you learn the game. Most of the game is played with pencil on paper, or a character sheet on a device if your group is embracing technology at the table. Next you will want a set of dice, which if you are joining an established group, you will probably be able to borrow when you are new. There is a basic set of 7 dice most commonly associated with dungeons and dragons. 

  • 20 sided dice
  • 10 sided dice that counts in intervals of 10
  • 10 sided dice that counts in intervals of 1
  • 12 sided dice
  • 8 sided dice
  • 6 sided dice
  • 4 sided dice

Other dice, like 2-sided dice (a coin) and 100-sided dice (which looks an awful lot like a golf ball are sometimes used, but the list above is all you will need for now. Depending on how your group plays combat you may need a miniature to represent your character. If your group uses a table top map otr terrain to keep track of combat, then someone will likely have a mini to lend you as a placeholder. As you get to know and love your character though, you will likely be excited to track down a game piece that represents your character in the game. Apart from that there are quite a few rule books. Wizards of the Coast, the company that currently publishes Dungeons and Dragons does a decent job or regularly releasing new content, and they like to charge an arm and a leg for that content. To get started there are beginners sets which have good versions of slimmed down rules. But eventually you will want to at least pick up a Player’s Handbook. When you sit down at a table as a new player though, there will almost certainly be a loaner copy, and groups generally pass books around the group liberally. (It’s kinda part of the culture.)


So, your starting equipment to sit down and start playing a game of Dungeons and Dragons is almost nothing. But as you learn the game, as you get to know your character and the world and the rules then the equipment is almost ever-expanding. This is an open ended hobby, that can help you express yourself creatively while building friendships that can become a lasting positive part of your life.

Can I Play D&D Alone

Sure, you can play Dungeons and Dragons on your own. Although D&D is generally played amongst a group of friends, it can also be quite rewarding on its own. Advanced dungeon masters often find that they set up scenarios for their players, and run them through multiple times, in order to balance and ensure the games has the best chance for success. When a DM goes through this process it is often called play  testing. This process can be fun and fulfilling even if the game you are playing is never intended for outside consumption by other people.