There’s a variety of reasons I love Dungeons & Dragons. It’s a shared narrative experience, its problem solving, creativity, and a social context. It’s just all around great.
But I never really stopped to think about just how much we as a society owe to D&D. Pretty much everything can be and is gamified these days. And the core of so many of those systems are basic level-up mechanics: get some points, make progress, eventually reach a new tier and get a reward. Repeat.
That simple system…just…didn’t exist before the first edition of D&D. They literally invented the “get XP, eventually level up” system that is -everywhere- now. Not just in games, but in our everyday lives. From fitness tracking to productivity to education.
I think you could make a solid argument that D&D is the most important game of the modern era.