Saturday, November 17, 2012

Dread: Fun for the Family

i've had a breakthrough, a moment of brilliance. And it's all thanks to some free stuff at drivethrurpg.

at one of the conventions i regularly attend with my daughter, i usually spend some time in the family room, where there are kid friendly games available and lighter content versions of more prominent games. my friends often are the overseers of the family events, and i am often brought in to assist in doing something interesting for the kids.

i generally bring events to these places that i'm very familiar with, like Qags and our homespun Clash of the Kaiju mini game. I use Dread for great horror games, but the system is sound enough for everything.

now, a few days ago, i was checking out the free stuff section of DriveThruRPG, just trying to find some fun and interesting things. i came across some adventures for a game called "Fantasy Adventures for Kids" by Jen Games. i took a look at them, and it's relatively simple design. a simple dungeon that goes from room to room, and each room has a puzzle or a combat in it. nothing major, nothing really scary, but challenging.

i downloaded three items:

castle of blood: this one caught my eye initially. typical villagers/adventures going after a dracula-ish character in his castle. cool

citadel of madness: a sunken citadel rises from the depths, and the characters have to get Cthulthu to sleep again. SWEET!  also doesn't hurt that the shape of the dungeon is in the shape of a nautilus spiral.

The tomb of despair: typical dungeon crawl with a lich. nice.

so i have my ideas and scenes already here. but what about the questionnaires?

i got to thinking. a figured that i have i bit more leeway with these things. instead of questions, i would have simple statements. statements that explain the general concepts of the character.

for example:

Max: Monster Hunter (idea for Castle of Blood)

You have read every known book on monsters

You tend to have nightmares when you sleep...if you sleep at all.

You carry holy water, your old journal, and matches with you at all times.

Bats tend to make you a little uncomfortable.


this will help me make several characters to start, and to use several times throughout the convention.

also, i thought about a mechanic that allows the kids to get out of difficult situations without severely weakening the tower. perhaps a quick hand of War can convince me to help them solve a puzzle or help them get away from a swarm of bats rather than killing them. purely an optional idea.

the final bit is something we all know. the tower falls, someone gets knocked out of the game. doesn't have to involve death. they can just run away in fear. also, should have some candy on hand for the kids that get knocked out first.

all for now.


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