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Dungeons & Dragons Launches Dedicated Streaming Channel

After the success of the film “Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves,” grossing over $200 million at the global box office, Hasbro is hungry for more. Hasbro’s subsidiary production company eOne has announced the launch of a new free, ad-supported streaming television (FAST) channel dedicated to the immensely popular role-playing tabletop game. Variety was the first to report this exciting news.

Introducing the Dungeons & Dragons Adventures, a 24-hour FAST channel set to debut this summer. It will showcase original programming based on captivating campaigns played by talented content creators, curated third-party content from influential figures, and even include beloved classics like the animated Dungeons & Dragons series from 1983.

Here are some of the exciting shows you can expect on the new channel:

Encounter Party: Based on the popular podcast of the same name, this series features a dynamic ensemble of six members, including the talented actor Khary Payton from “The Walking Dead.” The campaign unfolds within the immersive Forgotten Realms, a commonly explored setting in the game.

Faster, Purple Worm! Kill! Kill!: This lively improv show, created in collaboration with actor Matthew Lillard (known for his role as Shaggy in the 2002 live-action “Scooby-Doo” movie), invites special guests and celebrities to act as first-level players engaging in thrilling battles against formidable high-level monsters and beasts.

Heroes’ Feast: A delectable cooking competition and talk show inspired by the bestselling cookbook, “Heroes’ Feast.” This delightful series is co-hosted by the talented actress Sujata Day from “Insecure” and renowned chef and internet personality Mike Haracz.

Hasbro has stated that the Dungeons & Dragons Adventures FAST channel will be available on multiple platforms, although specific distribution deals have not been announced yet, as reported by Variety.

In addition to the streaming channel, Paramount+ has ordered a live-action “Dungeons & Dragons” series, further highlighting the monumental resurgence and increased mainstream appeal of the game. This renewed popularity can be attributed to the influential content creators who captivate audiences with their live-streamed adventures, showcasing imaginative storytelling and thrilling dice rolls.

A shining example of this is “Critical Role,” a weekly show featuring a talented group of voice actors. Their success has propelled them to secure lucrative multiyear deals with Amazon, enabling them to develop TV series based on their two captivating campaigns, Vox Machina and Mighty Nein. The reach and impact of Dungeons & Dragons have never been more significant.

It’s refreshing to see platforms like the Dungeons & Dragons Adventures FAST channel provide opportunities for content creators, such as Encounter Party, who may not have the same level of recognition as prominent shows like “Critical Role.” However, there is uncertainty about whether these shows will attract a large audience within the FAST market.

The FAST market has primarily been associated with viewers consuming older movies and shows, such as classics like “The Twilight Zone” or reality shows like “Teen Mom.” This raises questions about whether the FAST space is the ideal platform for Dungeons & Dragons content. The reception and engagement of such content in this context remain to be seen.

Furthermore, it will be intriguing to observe which other content creators will join the new channel, considering the backlash that Wizards of the Coast (WoTC), the publisher of Dungeons & Dragons, faced earlier this year. In January, WoTC faced criticism for updating its Open Gaming License, which initially seemed to pose a threat to creators’ livelihoods.

However, WoTC swiftly responded to the protests by announcing the licensing of the game’s core mechanics under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license, granting everyone the ability to publish and sell works based on Dungeons & Dragons. This resolution was met with appreciation from the community.

Despite the issue being resolved, content creators might still approach partnerships with WoTC cautiously, given the prior concerns. Nonetheless, the launch of the Dungeons & Dragons Adventures FAST channel is an intriguing move by WoTC, and it could pleasantly surprise fans who are eager for more content in the realm of Dungeons & Dragons.

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