The Art of War Applied to 'Dungeons & Dragons'

A new Dungeons & Dragons supplement seeks to impart the lessons of Sun Tzu's The Art of War on tabletop gaming. Dungeons & Dragons has its roots in tabletop war gaming, and a large part of the game is defined by combat and strategy. After all, players assume the role of adventurers and warriors who are seeking to end some sort of terrible threat before it is unleashed on the world. However, Dungeons & Dragons doesn't necessarily teach players about proper combat strategy, and that often leads to some bumbling moments that puts them at a disadvantage when facing an all-seeing beholder or a Death Knight with centuries of experience waging war.

To help bridge the gap between the combat-ready characters and the inexperienced players that often run them, M. T. Black has written The Art of War for D&D Players, a new DMs Guild supplement that translates many of the lessons imparted in Sun Tzu's The Art of War for use in D&D. The supplement serves as both a basic strategy guide and as a refresher about D&D's many combat rules, explaining when and why to grapple or how to use movement in combat to your advantage. While every combat is different in D&D, The Art of War for D&D Players seeks to show players how to look at combat in a certain way to maximize your chances of success.

The Art of War for D&D Players starts from a "macro" perspective, explaining the basics of preparing for an enemy, and when to seek out a fight. As the supplement progresses, it explains the ideal roles for certain classes and then eventually moves into the basics of powergaming - how to optimize a player's stats and spell slots and how to use action economy to the party's advantage. Luckily, the book doesn't delve too deeply into the crunchier aspects of D&D - it never goes into optimal builds or multiclass options - so you shouldn't be worried about your players turning into a band of powergamers after reading it.


While not essential, The Art of War for D&D Players is a valuable supplement for any player frustrated by how ineffective they are in combat or wonders why their party always rushes into situations that are obviously traps. If you're looking for a more strategic perspective on D&D, pick up The Art of War for D&D Players today.

The Art of War for D&D Players is available on the DMs Guild for $7.95.