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    How Many Dungeons and Dragons Spin-offs Are There?


    How many spin-offs of Dungeons & Dragons are on the market? A lot, to say the least. D&D has inspired a huge assortment of related products and media productions, each of which explores the fantasy worlds of the original tabletop roleplaying game in different ways.

    Theoretically, every single roleplaying game on the market is a spin-off of Dungeons & Dragons. The success and innovative nature of D&D inspired other game studios to publish their own roleplaying games. Some, like Tunnels & Trolls, RuneQuest, or Empire of the Petal Throne, were also in the fantasy genre, while titles like Traveller, Shadowrun, or Call of Cthulhu branched out into science fiction and horror while introducing more rules for storytelling and social interaction. Each year brings more new roleplaying games, each one homaging or distinguishing themselves from the original D&D template.

    For brevity's sake, this article will focus on the spin-offs developed or produced by the makers of Dungeons & Dragons Tactical Studies Rules in the 1970's/1980's, and Wizards of the Coast from the 1990's onward. Additionally, this article will restrict itself to games and stories that take place in a D&D setting, but aren't built on the roleplaying rules from the various D&D editions. Furthermore, this article will pretend that the 2000 Dungeons and Dragons movie with Jeremy Irons doesn't exist.

    D&D Video Game Spinoffs


    From early titles released on the Intellivision console to more modern party-based RPGs like Baldur's Gate and Neverwinter Nights, there are a boatload of official video games that try to recreate the dungeon-diving adventures of Dungeons & Dragons while automating the process of rolling dice and leveling up. Even without the D&D brand attached, any RPG or MMO with character attributes, experience points, slime enemies, or priests with healing magic owes its existence to the world's first roleplaying game.

    D&D Board Game Spinoffs


    Dungeons & Dragons started as a spin-off from classic board and war-games: fittingly enough, both TSR and WotC have published several D&D board games over the years that return to these roots. Lords of Waterdeep, for instance, is a board game that takes place in a city from the D&D: Forgotten Realms setting, focusing on the political schemes and maneuvers of the Masked Lords who rule Waterdeep. There are also several D&D card games focused around adventuring party conflicts and squabbles. In Dungeon Mayhem, for instance, adventurers fight each other in a battle royale, while in Rock, Paper, Wizard, they compete over who gets the loot first.

    D&D Book Spinoffs


    Each published campaign setting for D&D Dragonlance, Forgotten Realms, and Eberron, among others has come with a virtual library of spin-off books, where fantasy authors such as Margaret Weiss and R.A. Salvatore created iconic D&D heroes like Raistlin Majere, the powerful, cynical, sickly wizard, or Drizzt Do'Urden, the valiant Dark Elf ranger with twin scimitars and a pet panther.

    D&D Comic Spinoffs


    D&D has also inspired many comic spin-offs, with publishers from DC to Marvel releasing adaptations of the Dragonlance, Forgotten Realms, and Spelljammer settings over the years. Currently, IDW Publishing is publishing two major Dungeons & Dragons comics in collaboration with Wizards of the Coast: Legend of Baldur's Gate, featuring Minsc and Boo from the Baldur's Gate video games, and the oddball Rick and Morty vs. Dungeons & Dragons series, in which the main cast from the Rick and Morty cartoon explore different editions and settings of D&D.

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    D&D Cartoon Spinoffs


    Anyone who came of age in the 80's will likely remember the Dungeons & Dragons cartoon, where teenagers from the real world get sucked into a fantasy world and took on the roles of fantasy adventurers as they searched for a way home, aided in their efforts by a mysterious wizard called the Dungeon Master. In 2008, Paramount Pictures released an animated adaption of the Dragonlance novel Dragons of Autumn Twilight, which did not perform well. More recently, D&D fans shattered stretch goals for the the Critical Role: The Legend of Vox Machina Kickstarter, funding the production of an animated special that would adapt story arcs from the live-streamed sessions of the Critical Role gaming group.

    Once again: the 2000 Dungeons & Dragons movie with Jeremy Irons doesn't exist.


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