Dungeons & Dragons writer Wizards of the Coast has acknowledged the existence of racist stereotypes in its sourcebooks, and pledged to make modifications to ameliorate the difficulty.
In a weblog submit printed on June 17 titled “Diversity and Dungeons & Dragons,” Wizards of the Coast stated that depicting a various array of human beings — past “fantasy versions of northern Europeans” — is “one of the explicit design goals of 5th edition D&D.” The builders famous that whereas they wish to function characters “who represent an array of ethnicities, gender identities, sexual orientations, and beliefs,” the sport nonetheless incorporates problematic depictions of fantasy races.
Among these races are the orcs, who are sometimes characterised as a savage horde of creatures who lust for battle, and the drow, an evil dark-skinned subrace of elves who dwell in a subterranean matriarchy. Wizards of the Coast particularly addressed these two teams in laying out latest and future modifications to D&D merchandise:
We current orcs and drow in a brand new mild in two of our most up-to-date books, Eberron: Rising from the Last War and Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount. In these books, orcs and drow are simply as morally and culturally complicated as different peoples. We will proceed that method in future books, portraying all of the peoples of D&D in relatable methods and making it clear that they’re as free as people to determine who they’re and what they do. […]
Later this 12 months, we are going to launch a product (not but introduced) that provides a means for a participant to customise their character’s origin, together with the choice to alter the power rating will increase that come from being an elf, a dwarf, or certainly one of D&D’s many different playable folks. This choice emphasizes that every particular person within the sport is a person with capabilities all their very own.
Wizards of the Coast additionally stated it’s adjusting materials that maligns or stereotypes real-world ethnic teams just like the Roma. The firm has revised the journey Curse of Strahd, which features a folks referred to as the Vistani that “echoes some stereotypes associated with the Romani people in the real world.” In addition, the writer stated two future books might be written with a Romani guide in order to characterize the Vistani “in a way that doesn’t rely on reductive tropes.”
Curse of Strahd was certainly one of two adventures, the opposite being Tomb of Annihilation, by which the corporate modified “racially insensitive” textual content in latest reprintings. “We will continue this process, reviewing each book as it comes up for a reprint and fixing such errors where they are present,” stated Wizards of the Coast.
Wizards of the Coast concluded by stating that it’ll work with a wide range of “sensitivity readers” on future content material and proceed counting on “experts in various fields to help us identify our blind spots.” The writer added that it’s “seeking new, diverse talent to join our staff and our pool of freelance writers and artists.”