Watch out for FLUDD.
If you’re like me and have attempted to get into Dungeons and Dragons, you’ll know it isn’t easy. Even if you’re not buying the core set of books and spending the time to create your own character, convincing your friends or finding a group to play with is pretty difficult. The few times I tried to play were borderline disasters. At one “open house” type event, the other players were visibly upset I was a newcomer and spent more time discussing interpersonal drama than the game, and at another structured campaign event I was told the only group playing wasn’t looking for a fifth player. Needless to say D&D’s biggest obstacle was also its most important, the social interactions among the players. It’s what makes D&D and tabletop gaming so special, but can also drag it down.
Luckily Roll20, an online service allowing players to conduct tabletop sessions virtually, will be adding official Dungeons and Dragons content to their service. A beginner’s adventure, entitled Lost Mine of Phandelver, is already available for $19.99 and another, called Storm King’s Thunder, will be coming in September. Roll20 is already a great service for would-be adventurers who can’t meet up to game, and D&D wants these add-ons to make their game more accessible to newcomers.
At the very least I hope this entices some people who’ve always been curious about tabletop role playing games. With a good group, online or off, games like D&D can be some lead to some incredible experiences. At worst, you can still goof around online with friends.