An illustrated guide to the history and evolution of the beloved role-playing game told through the paintings, sketches, illustrations, and visual ephemera behind its creation, growth, and continued popularity.
With more than 700 images of guidebook illustrations, game packaging, advertising and ephemera crammed between its covers, it feels as if you’re exploring a document dump of the company archives in convenient coffee-table-book form ... While the book is dominated by images of clanking chainmail-clad warriors, columns of text detailing the game’s historical development also snake through its pages. The tone is largely upbeat and earnest, but the authors don’t sidestep the ups and downs of the franchise ... Dungeons & Dragons Art & Arcana will mostly appeal to those who have similarly fond memories or who want a nostalgic blast from the past — even if the past was last night. But player or not, it’s hard to deny the degree to which D&D has infiltrated the culture...
Now a new illustrated history is providing an unprecedented look at the visual evolution of the game...and it's an absolutely spectacular book ... [a] gorgeous and essential visual history ... I was continually surprised and delighted to find material in Art & Arcana that I didn't know about or had never seen before. Any D&D fan will drool over the the color photos of original maps and concept art, and the text—written by some of the most knowledgeable people in the hobby—is full of new information and obscure details.
Every page of this incredible book is bursting with the visual materials that set it apart from other games and helped propel it into a multi-million-dollar franchise ... Art & Arcana is a visual feast for the eyes ... hands down, an absolute gem of a book. From the cover...to the beautifully illustrated interior, each page is worthy of time, attention and inspection. The story of the game...is engaging and quite interesting, and is made all the more intriguing as the artistic design flows through the telling. This is not just a book for Dungeons & Dragons gamers, though they are more likely to be the interested parties. It is, in truth, for anyone who loves a good biography, and especially for those who love fantasy art. It is a treasure chest of wonder.