Stuffed Crocodile

Mazes, Martians, Mead

Drakar och Demoner

Drakar och Demoner... and yes, that is artwork from the Stormbringer RPG, I guess they got some deal

Drakar och Demoner… and yes, that is artwork lifted from the Stormbringer RPG, I guess they got some package deal with Chaosium

Drakar och Demoner (Dragons and Demons, confusingly abbreviated D&D) is the Swedish standard fantasy RPG. This is where the hobby started in that country back in the 80s and where most Swedish gamers come from. It is not actually very close to D&D at all, being instead based on Runequest.

Specifically in the beginning it was a translation of the Magic World supplement from the Worlds of Wonder RPG, which was based on the Basic Roleplaying System, which in turn was originally based on Runequest. That reminds me of the fact that the first game to be translated into German was Tunnels & Trolls. Now that was a squandered opportunity. Although DSA at least got the same rhyming spells in the beginning.

Where was I?

Oh yes, Drakar och Demoner. It just got a new edition (the 7th!) a while ago. Fancy book with nice layout and in a language that I only understand partially. German and Swedish are rather close linguistically, but that doesn’t mean much. Although like with scientific languages I can guess a lot of the meanings of words from the texts anyway. I nearly bought the book when we were in Stockholm last year*, just to have it standing on the shelf. It’s not like I would have played it with anyone.

I guess that new edition is the reason why it’s publishing house decided to publish the old books for the game online for free. So if you are interested in the history of RPGs in Sweden (and if you can read a bit of Swedish) this might be interesting.


* if anyone is stranded in Stockholm with a desperate need for RPG material or boardgames I would recommend visiting the excellent Science-Fiction Bokhandeln in Gamla Stan (the old town).


4 responses to “Drakar och Demoner

  1. Pingback: Oh look! Another D&D movie… | Stuffed Crocodile

  2. BeRKA February 3, 2014 at 9:14 pm

    I am from Sweden and I played Traveller before this game was published.


    • Geoffrey February 3, 2014 at 10:06 pm

      hmm… was it in Swedish though?
      I don’t think that that game was the first one played, more that it was the most influential. But that is basically hearsay I keep on repeating.
      I can just compare it to Germany where there were multiple games published very early, all of which had only very limited success (Midgard was the first one, Tunnels and Trolls was soon forgotten, Dungeons and Dragons suffered from really bad translation issues, etc.). But roleplaying took off when Das Schwarze Auge was published, which soon got a similar status in the German language as Dungeons and Dragons did in English speaking areas, or Warhammer did in Poland. I assumed that Drakar och Demoner had a similar status in Sweden.


      • BeRKA February 4, 2014 at 5:54 am

        Yes, it was very popular in Sweden. But my group was already playing Traveller, so we ignored this game.


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