The parent company of Dungeons & Dragons publisher Wizards of the Coast is to buy D&D Beyond, the popular digital role-playing tool suite. The company announced the news this week in a press release, revealing that it would be buying D&D Beyond from current owner Fandom in a $146.3 million cash transaction. Wizards of the Coast is a subsidiary of toymaker Hasbro, which bought the company in 1999.
Fandom, which hosts fan sites for popular titles in movies, games, and TV, purchased D&D Beyond and the rest of the company’s media assets in 2017 from game mod and community tool Curse, who was being absorbed into a deal with Tic.
“D&D Beyond has been one of our most valued partners in the digital space for the past six years, and we’re thrilled to bring their best talent to our team,” said Cynthia Williams, president of Wizards of the Coast and Digital. “The D&D Beyond team has built an incredible digital platform, and together we will deliver the best possible Dungeons & Dragons experience to players around the world.”
D&D Beyond is a digital playmate that’s ubiquitous enough in the scene that you can’t be blamed for thinking Wizards already had it. The company‘s website and app serve as something of a digital Swiss army knife for D&D gamers, offering everything from character creation and encounter building to digital dice (use at your own risk). be judged by your table). The app, which offers paid subscription tiers as well as basic free access, already has more than 10 million users.
Prior to the deal, Wizards and D&D Beyond were already collaborating closely, with the latter hosting exclusive digital access to all official D&D sourcebooks. This arrangement has long been a source of consternation among gamers reluctant to repurchase a digital copy of a physical book they already own, and some are hoping that pairing digital access with paper source books could be in the works. cards with the acquisition.
Wizards hosts a special event broadcast live on YouTube and Twitch on April 21 at 9:00 a.m. PT, so it’s possible we’ll know more about his plans at that time. The trailer shows off a game map, minis and a somewhat out of place Xbox controller, so it’s possible we’ll also hear about new game titles or a suitable launch date for Baldur’s Gate 3, the next adventure. role-playing game developed by Divinity: Original Sin maker Larian.
Business is booming for Wizards of the Coast, which also publishes the strategy card game Magic: The Gathering. Between the pandemic forcing people to get creative with remote socializing and the wide exposure of hit live games like Critical Role — Twitch’s top earner — Wizards seems to be expanding the roleplaying game’s audience by a magnitude. The company brought more than $1.3 billion in revenue in 2021and with film and TV spin-offs of the sprawling tabletop fantasy multiverse in the works, that’s only going to grow.