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D&D Blog Hop: Day 23

Written by Darkwarren - Published on February 23, 2014

dnd40hopbadgeDay 23: First song that comes to mind that you associate with D&D. Why?

I never used to intentionally added music into my D&D experiences. I’ve tried to include sound effects and ambient noises, but never really songs.

But another DM in our group will play music during battle encounters. My favorite: the original Conan theme. There are tons of songs on his playlist, almost exclusively from movie soundtracks. Gladiator, Braveheart, Conan, The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, and so many other great fantasy and epic combat films typically have great scores. But for some reason the original Conan theme is the one that gets my heart pumping for battle the most. Plus, it’s just so damn iconic to the genre.

There is a second song that I associate with D&D that makes me laugh and that’s a song we call “Techno Bard”. Years ago, when I first started incorporating the ambient noises into my DM’ing, I just ripped them right out of computer game files: Neverwinter Nights, TES: Morrowind, Return to the Temple of Elemental Evil, and Pool of Radiance: Ruins of Myth Drannor, were but a few that I used. But Ruins of Myth Drannor also came with a CD. In fact, it was this CD that inspired me to try and incorporate more of the sounds and battle music from the games into our tabletop gaming. One of the tracks is a bard singing a ballad in a traditional medieval fashion. Then they took it and gave it a techno re-mix, hence… “Techno Bard”. It might even be a “hidden track” that only plays after about a minute of silence after the last track – so I remember us being surprised by it while the CD was running. It became a running gag with our group and while we haven’t used that CD in years I could probably bring up “Techno Bard” and it will immediately bring smiles.

I’ve used metal and techno for futuristic sci-fi games and even used Star Wars tracks when doing a Star Wars campaign.

Any suggestions you have for particular songs, artists, or albums for DM’s looking to enhance their tabletop experience?

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Written by Darkwarren

Matt W., aka Darkwarren, has been roleplaying ever since his older brother introduced him to the red box set when he was 7 years old. Since then he has game-mastered SSDC’s Battleords of the Twenty-third Century, WEG’s Shadowrun and Star Wars, and of course Dungeons & Dragons in a variety of forms. At thirty-four years old he takes turns on both sides of the screen with the group that he helped found in 2000 when 3.0 hit the stands and has met every week fairly regularly ever since. Currently they have been running a variety of the Paizo Adventure Path scenarios, so that’s his wheelhouse. He was almost famous when two of his adventures were green-lighted for possible publication right before Paizo relinquished the rights to publish Dungeon magazine.

Matt also has years if experience in improvisational comedy, fiction, and non-fiction writing. He is currently working and studying to attain a master’s degree in theology, to enhance his career as a religious studies teacher. Lastly, his greatest passion is his family, especially the three sons and dog that he shares with his wife in upstate New York.

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