Pen-and-paper role playing games might not cost your soul, but they're not cheap to learn. Tabletop games publisher Wizards of the Coast is trying to make Dungeons & Dragons more accessible by releasing Basic D&D for free on or around July 15th alongside the Starter Set. While it won't share the same scope, the book is described as equivalent to the D&D Rules Cyclopedia, which collated the game's dizzying multitude of guidelines into one place. If this is correct, new players may well be able to start playing Dungeons & Dragons for only the cost of a set of dice.

Initially, Basic D&D will only cover a handful of classes, the basic fantasy races, and enough material to create characters up to level 20. When Wizards of the Coast releases the Player's Handbook in August, it will be expanded to include monsters, magic items, rules for running a Dungeons & Dragons game, and directions on how to handle different environments. The company plans to continue releasing free PDFs as it publishes new storylines and books.