Dungeon and Dragons Hero: An Ancient Evolution

The Dungeon and Dragons Hero (D&D Hero) has its undeniable foundations in ancient mythological lore and has survived the span of millennia.

Manifestations of Achilles and his host of Greco-Roman contemporaries are present in the dream of every Dungeon and Dragons Hero, a process begun by thousands of eager wide-eyed gamers every week.

This Hero evolved in the early 1970’s, the passionate child of Gygax and Arneson who developed a hybrid of pop-culture influences as the crux of their new endeavor.

But what exactly is the Dungeon and Dragons Hero and what is his role?

The best possible answer, as in most cases, may not be the most popular, in fact it may not even be widely accepted, but the D&D Hero is a shadow of Homer’s carefully constructed state saviors. A Hero is the textbook definition of the archytypal Homeric hero.

So this still begs to questions, what exactly is the Dungeons and Dragons Hero and how is he associated with the classical hero?

Hero’s were intended by the creators to be one in the same with the Homeric Classical Hero. A Hero, above all else, dares to live his dreams. Yet unlike many of the Homeric classics, The D&D Hero’s are not ordinary men leading ordinary lives, called by some higher power to greatness. This Hero is already, by his design set apart from the rest of humankind. And it is in the very design that the Hero serves his primary function.

There is one essential core difference between the Dungeon and Dragons Hero and the traditional classical model. For Homer as well as most of the early writers, the classical Hero was plagued by a tragic flaw, or a characteristic impeding his progress toward greatness. This flaw often times resulted in his untimely demise.

But the D&D Hero is markedly different. Hero’s are drawn by an unquenchable thirst for adventure, an inner calling toward the destiny of a classical Hero. The game itself allows players to live out their dreams; their dreams of being a classical Hero, of visiting far off lands and places, and of celebrating a life so very distant from the collective modern conscience.

Dungeon and Dragons Hero’s offer an escape from the mundane, the drone of the outside world. Hero’s transplant their hosts into other worlds’ filled danger, peril, honor, chivalry, and of course adventure. But the Dungeon and Dragons Hero is often misunderstood. Non-players may not understand, and unfortunately often times do not.

The characteristics of the classical Hero have long been absent from the modern world and it is the function of the Dungeon and Dragons Hero to restore these traits to their proper monument. The Hero serves myriad functions, but must be acknowledged as a remnant of a time long-passed when danger lurked and a man was distinguished by his honor and bravery; above all by his thirst for adventure.