Dungeons & Dragons announced they have added trigger warnings to a number of their old products.
This new announcement comes after their “Diversity and Dungeons & Dragons” announcement that revealed they are employing “sensitivity readers” to review their campaign books and that they would be radically changing the nature of race mechanics.
Dungeons & Dragons announced the inclusion of the trigger warnings on Twitter.
They wrote, “A disclaimer has been added to several legacy titles on our partner distribution sites.”
They then detailed they were going to explain why they were adding the trigger warnings, “We’d like to talk about why we’ve added that disclaimer, what it means, and other steps that are being taken to address a legacy of ethnic, racial, and gender prejudice in some old products.”
In a subsequent tweet they wrote, “This is an early step and not done in a vacuum. It’s not enough to evaluate ourselves. As outlined in our original diversity statement, we’re undergoing the process of reviewing our content and practices and hiring external consultants to review with us.”
They continued, “These processes take time to implement, and we’ll continue to provide future updates. Unfortunately, our disclaimer was added before we were ready to fully communicate the steps we are taking.”
“We apologize for failing to handle this situation with the care and grace it deserves,” they added.
Next they stated, “Lastly, we want to make it clear that we condemn the harassment or bullying of those raising their concerns about our content, past or present.”
“D&D wants to be an open, welcoming, and inclusive space. Those who do not reflect those values are not welcome in our community,” the tweet concluded.
Dungeons and Dragons then apologized, “Simply put, we messed up and we’re sorry. Wizards of the Coast is constantly working to be better, and we have a lot of work to do, especially so in repairing trust with our community.”
They concluded, “Thank you for continuing to use your voice so that we may continue to make meaningful change.”
You can see an example of the trigger warning below for the Dungeons & Dragons RPG Starter Set Quickstart (4e).
It reads, “We (Wizards) recognize that some of the legacy content available on this website does not reflect the values of the Dungeons & Dragons franchise today. Some older content may reflect ethnic, racial, and gender prejudice that were commonplace in American society at that time.”
It continues, “These depictions were wrong then and are wrong today. This content is presented as it was originally created, because to do otherwise would be the same as claiming these prejudices never existed.”
The trigger warning concludes, “Dungeons & Dragons teaches that diversity is a strength, and we strive to make our D&D products as welcoming and inclusive as possible. This part of our work will never end.”
The addition of the trigger warnings and the diversity statement come after the company has been repeatedly attacked over the past six months.
The initial salvos appear to have been launched over the game’s traditional depiction of orcs with a number of people claiming the fictional race is racist and problematic.
Wizards of the Coast and Dungeons & Dragons then saw a number of individuals who previously freelanced for the company and were involved in their games accuse them of racist practices in the wake of Black Lives Matter protests, rioting, and looting following the death of George Floyd.
Recently former Dungeons & Dragons freelancer Orion Black accused Wizards of the Coast of exploiting black people.
Daniel Kwan of the Dungeons & Da Asians cast also went after Wizards of the Coast saying, “WotCs treatment of BIPOC creators and our stories has been shocking. They’ve shown that they don’t care about our stories – no matter what they say about diversity.”
Kwan not only attacked Wizards of the Coast, but also Dungeons & Dragons fans as well.
He wrote, “The amount of abuse I received for calling out their hypocrisy regarding Oriental Adventures was also a shocking reminder of how complicit the D&D fan base is in perpetuating problematic content.”
He specifically took issue with white people writing, “Not to mention, the sheer volume of white people calling me a book burner.”
Kwan concluded his lengthy thread saying that the Asians Represent Podcast would no longer use the 5th edition of Dungeon & Dragon rules.
He wrote, “Fans of Asians Represent Podcast don’t tune in to hear us use the 5th edition D&D rules. They tune in to hear OUR stories and experiences.”
“Moving forward, we are going to revisit the game we play on the podcast. If you have any recommendations, please let me know,” he concluded.
What do you make of Dungeons & Dragons’ decision to add this trigger warning to their older products?