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INVENTING WARGAMES

As we’ll learn, role-playing games (RPGs) such as Dungeons & Dragons are basically just fancy versions of “let’s pretend” or “let’s tell a story.” However, modern RPGs did not grow directly out of the make believe games that kids play. Instead, the invention of RPGs was inspired by another kind of play: table-top wargaming.

People have enjoyed playing board games for thousands of years. In some ancient games, two players competed to move all their game pieces across a board first. In other games, pieces were captured like soldiers in a miniature battle. Chess is the most famous of these. Invented in India over a thousand years ago, chess represents a war between two armies. The pieces represent the resources and military might of a kingdom. The players act like generals, using strategy to defeat their opponent’s forces.

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Skeptic
24.1
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Michelle E. Ainsworth holds an MA in history. She enjoys
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