Dungeons and Dragons, along with similar role-playing tabletop games, are currently enjoying a renaissance due in parts to the ubiquity of gaming across most demographics, the popularization of the fantasy genre, and a pandemic that gave people the time and technology to connect and play across vast distances. It’s not uncommon for players to enjoy an ale or mead while playing together, but now with more players coming to the table, more of them are bringing cannabis.

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Playing D&D under the influence of cannabis can be a rollicking adventure with friends or a tedious slog through lapsed attention and tangential thoughts, so it’s important to find a balance, both in strain and consumption.

This article examines how to choose the best strain for your gaming experience, and recommends a few strains to get players started.

How to Choose a Strain for Gaming

Dungeons and Dragons is, ultimately, a shared storytelling experience among the players. It is a shared creative process that is inevitably affected – for better or worse – by the introduction of a substance infamous for fostering creativity. The potential for fun is obvious: a table full of players collaborating loosely in good spirits can lead to any number of epic or ridiculous adventures. But a wizard packing devilweed can also curse a party by leaving players paranoid, anxious, or lethargic.

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When choosing a strain, be it for D&D or multiplayer online games, shop in the sativa section of the store, or at least the hybrids. Pure indicas like Grandaddy Purple or Blueberry leave most consumers sinking into the couch and either unable or uninterested in engaging in complex tasks. Sativas, however, perk up most consumers, lifting their moods and inspiring creative efforts.

Enhanced focus, or hyperfocus, brought on by some sativa strains can make for a more immersive role-playing experience by reducing attention to distractions including distracting thoughts. Have you ever gotten lost in a vivid daydream after smoking? Imagine steering that daydream with your friends. The risk with pure sativas is that they also cause anxiety in many people at higher doses, and it's often easy to go one toke over the line.

Below are seven strains that should appeal to most gamers. While sativas remain the top recommendation, the list includes alternatives for consumers who are sensitive to anxiety, including a high-CBD strain. We tried to choose popular strains that could be found in most markets.

Best Strains for D&D

Durban Poison

Neon green cannabis bud with long orange hairs coming out of the top of the cola Durban Poison provides focused effects to get into the game.

Durban Poison, or simply Durban, is a popular landrace strain from South Africa known for its energizing high which includes acute focus. Only small doses of this potent plant are recommended because at higher doses Durban can cause anxiety. But most consumers of Durban Poison will gleefully turn over any puzzle or problem placed in front of them.

Ghost Train Haze

A yellowish-green cannabis bud with dark orange hairs on it Ghost Train Haze is great for socializing.

Ghost Train Haze is a cross between the supercharged Neville’s Haze and the super-chill Ghost OG. It hits hard and fast, almost immediately lifting the consumer’s mood and sharpening focus on the conversation at hand. Socializing comes easy on Ghost Train Haze, fostering a spirit of collaboration. Just be careful: this train derails at high doses.

Ghost OG

A small, round light green cannabis nugget that has orange hairs and is dusted in white trichomes Ghost OG can have sedative effects if consumed too much.

If Ghost Train Haze is too racy for you, then try its more mellow parent, Ghost OG. This OG phenotype is sedative without putting consumers to sleep, making it a great choice for players with anxiety. It carries a more physical high than other strains on this list without dulling mental sharpness, so consumers can relax while keeping their head in the game.

Strawberry Cough

A macro shot of a cannabis nugget with purple hues in the sugar leaves and orange hairs intermixed with white trichomes Strawberry Cough is a great strain to enjoy while playing D&D.

Strawberry Cough is a sativa-leaning hybrid that will sweeten even the sourest mood, making it a great option for releasing stress and settling into a game with friends. Consumers are uplifted and energized similar to other sativas on this list, but unlike other sativas, Strawberry Cough stops short of the racing cerebral high. Consumers concerned about anxiety typically have no problems with this strain.

Girl Scout Cookies

A cannabis nugget with bright and vivid green calyxes and orange hairs Girl Scout Cookies is perfect for an adventure thanks to its euphoric effects.

It may seem too easy to list Girl Scout Cookies, or GSC, here because it’s a good strain for almost any occasion, but it is particularly fun over a round of D&D. GSC is intensely euphoric, going so far as to give some consumers a fit of giggles. It also reduces anxiety, though overconsumption may lead to couchlock and lethargy. A single player on GSC may be difficult to wrangle, but a whole party on GSC is destined for a strange adventure. Bring snacks with this strain!

Gelato

A purple and green cannabis plant growing outdoors Gelato Cake provides a cerebral high without the jitters. photo credit

A popular descendant of GSC, Gelato offers a balanced high that physically relaxes consumers without pinning them to their seats. But also imparts a cerebral high that fosters creative thinking without the jittery head rush of a pure sativa. Consumers who experience anxiety from strains like Durban Poison should have nothing to fear from this after-dinner strain. Note: an alternative phenotype called Gelato #33, or Larry Bird, is a perfectly acceptable substitute.

Harlequin

Cannabis bud with dark orange hairs covering its green and white dusted body Harlequin has CBD within its makeup that helps keep your boots on the ground.

Harlequin is a high-CBD strain with a typical ratio of 5:2 CBD to THC, meaning it is less psychoactive than other options on this list. However, it is still the product of multiple sativa strains including Thai landrace. The sativa genetics sharpen focus while CBD is a reliable anxiolytic, meaning it reduces anxiety. The final result is an uplifting strain that leaves consumers grinning ear to ear, but also keeps their boots on the ground. This is a great option for light or infrequent consumers or players who just don’t want to get too high.

Summary

D&D is a game of creativity and collaboration that may benefit or break from the introduction of cannabis. While certain strains are known for enhancing, or at least encouraging, creativity, others may leave players sluggish or uninterested in the story they’re supposed to help write.

When choosing a strain for gaming, sativas or sativa hybrids are the preferable potions. These strains are typically associated with elevated mood, increased energy, and enhanced creative thinking. Conversely, pure indicas are more associated with physical relaxation to the point of sedation and decreased energy. Avoid these strains unless you want your party to get drowsy in the dragon’s lair.

High-CBD strains are always a good option, particularly for players with low THC tolerance. CBD reduces anxiety for a social high with little intoxication.

Almost as important as knowing what strain to smoke is knowing how much of it to smoke. The pure sativas on this list are great for creativity and focus, but too much will stir many consumers into an anxious or paranoid state. Remember to pace yourself for a long night of adventuring. And if the party does need to rest for the night, here are a few other weed games you can play that don’t require so much paperwork.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is Weed Called in D&D?

There is no strict analog to cannabis in D&D, but similar substances have been referred to as pipeweed, ragweed, and devilweed.

Are Sativas or Indicas Strains Better for Playing Dungeons and Dragons?

Sativas are better for most consumers because the energizing effects typically induce a more playful mood while keeping players focused. Many indicas, on the other hand, leave consumers lethargic or even sleepy, and complex tasks like storytelling and math may seem overwhelming.

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