Dungeons & Dragons has a certain level of popularity and here's what it looks like.
Dungeons & Dragons tabletop games saw a massive surge in popularity over the recent years, despite its decades-long presence and a somewhat patchy ride to 2021. Wizards of the Coast, a publisher of D&D, just released a massive infographic detailing the tabletop game’s massive popularity gain throughout 2020.
The story was initially covered by Game Rant; and offers a breakdown of the recently released infographic about the Dungeons & Dragons tabletop game, and the jaw-dropping growth of the game’s player base, which now has over 50 million players. These numbers mark the 7th consecutive year of unprecedented growth, boasting 33% year-over-year increase, globally. Not bad for an old game, considering that Dungeons & Dragons turns 47 this year. Yes, D&D released in 1974, same year as Telenet, the first commercial internet provider service. Feeling old yet?
Well, you shouldn’t. According to the infographic, individuals older than 40 years of age make up 13% of the games overall community demographics. The game boasts a 40% female and 60% male player base, with less than 1% non-binary players. As far as age goes, Dungeons & Dragons broadly appeals to all ages, with young adults, ranging from 20 to 24 years of age, being the dominant age group. If you played D&D in your teens, you’ll be surprised to know that teenagers make up only 12% of the player base, which makes them the smallest group. Other age groups are fairly evenly distributed, which only attests to the game’s broad appeal.
Apart from Dungeons & Dragons’ demographics, the infographic shows other interesting stats, most notably, the one concerning Dungeon Masters, guides of the game’s narrative. According to the products segment, more and more players are becoming Dungeon Masters, judging by the growth in DM-focused books sales, which grew notably over the years. With more and more players becoming Dungeon Masters, with intimate knowledge of the game’s mechanics, we can expect even further expansion of the game’s player base and fandom.
In its closing segments, the infographic discloses information regarding popular products from the Dungeons & Dragons universe, and concludes with a calendar of 2021 Dungeons & Dragons releases. The information shared in the infographic only goes to show just how immensely popular D&D tabletop game has become.
Dungeons & Dragons was originally published by Tactical Studies Rules, Inc. in 1974, basing the game on miniature wargames of the time. The game departed from traditional wargaming, by introducing role-playing elements, like character creation, instead of military formation. Its early success led to the proliferation of similar gaming systems, though, despite the newly risen competition, D&D remained the market leader in the RPG industry.
Dungeons & Dragons is one of the most referenced titles in popular culture, spawning several game variations, novels, books, podcasts, merchandise, etc. It was the center of a moral panic in the ’80s, when its fantasy setting was falsely linked to Satanism and suicide by religious groups, so it has seen some rough patches along it’s ride to glory, but it eventually broke out as one of the most-recognizable tabletop games in history. So, to answer the question: Yes, Dungeons & Dragons is still popular, now more than ever.