Teach your children to play Dungeons and Dragons?

“Since it is so likely that children will meet cruel enemies, let them at least have heard of brave knights and heroic courage. Otherwise you are making their destiny not brighter but darker” CS LEWIS

kids1It wasn’t too long ago there was a certain stigma attached to Dungeon and Dragons and games similar in nature.   Nerds and geeks playing in dim classrooms of schools on the fringe of society.  We were outcasts.


Fast forward 30-40 years and geek culture, Dungeons & Dragons are now the cool hobbies.  Pop-culture has hit an all-time high and the D&D non-fans are influenced by popular shows like “The Big Bang Theory” and “Stranger Things”. D&D is mainstream and part of our culture.






The internet has exploded with information and the latest 5e products are some of the best  I’ve seen.


For those of us that have grown up with the game and now have kids it can sometimes be hard to find the time to play.  Yoda would tell you “Teach your kids you will!”  There is no greater power than the power of inspiring a young mind.

There are so many benefits that your children can gain from sitting around a table playing the game of our youth.

Dungeon and Dragons groups tend to become friends for life. Even though some live many thousands miles away with sites like Roll20 and Fantasy Grounds we still manage to play a couple times a month.  Those nerds I hung out with in dusty classrooms and shady comic stores are all still friends after numerous decades of adventures.


Kids will learn the important skills they need to be successful in life.  Teamwork and collaboration as they navigate through increasingly difficult puzzles and problems.   As they face new challenges they are learning how to build a team with diverse personalities and work together, often with limited resources.

D&D is key in encouraging social interaction. Take the game controller away and interact with your friends while you make friends with Strange Wizards and High Kings.

There is a lost art of storytelling and imagination.  D&D has inspired writers, artists, along with a host of other professions.  Let your kids grow their creative side.

You will help create and influence a new generation of writers and story tellers and lifelong friends.


Finally, I want to leave you with one final thought.  The greatest gift you will ever receive playing D&D with your kids is time.  Time spent together exploring the ruins of castles and defeating dragons.   Create your family story and adventure.  Don’t wait, because time is precious. Your kids want nothing more than your time.


The Player Test

Now and again I like to break up the monster killing and tavern brawls with something a little different.

Sometimes I drag out an old murder mystery or hand out a coded message the players have to solve on their own.  I’ve even given out a map with some vague information of a place they would have traveled through in their adventures and now they have to remember where this strange map might be from.

Every so often, one of these crazy ideas starts to swish around my brain.

I have one group that is all new players which started out last fall.

After completing my short intro adventure, I like to call learning your characters I had them all start Storm Kings Thunder (SKT).   I often pick up the published adventure books for my own reading and take various ideas I like form them to use in my own creations.  This one was just too good to pass up and filled with awesome encounters and an epic story.  So here we are traveling across the Savage Coast my heroes of the realms.

As mentioned, I have all new players who are still learning the game and some of the mechanics that are involved.

Being one of the liveliest and engaging groups I joking told them that I would be awarding them all a point of inspiration if they could pass my player test. “PLAYER TEST?” they exclaimed.

At this point, it was kind of a joke but the more I thought about it, the more I thought this could be a little fun and perhaps have some hidden learning buried deep in my sarcastic thoughts.

As the night was ending they brought up the test again.  I was on the hook to create something I hadn’t given much thought to.  So I reminded them to study their Players handbooks and beginning next session they could do the players test and anyone that scored 80% or higher would be awarded that precious point of inspiration.

After a little thought and thinking back to some of their last experiences, I came up with the “PLAYER TEST”.

test-writingMy group actually loved this and thought it was awesome.  To be honest, it was a ton of fun to write and mark, because some of the players actually answered as their character and I had to award points just for that.I thought it worth a share on here just for a giggle.

So here it is, just for fun……..

Players Test

Your Dungeon Master is Thirsty

  1. Reach into the fridge and provide a tasty non-alcoholic beverage.
  2. Reach into the fridge and pass him/her a beer
  3. Make a delicious rum and ginger for your Dungeon Master
  4. Roll Initiative

You see a chest and you would like to open it.

  1. Bash it open with a big sword
  2. Check for traps
  3. See if it has a lock
  4. Walk up and open the chest

You have found a trap on a door.

  1. You kick the door in
  2. You make a dexterity check to disable the trap
  3. You find a hafling and toss it towards the door
  4. You use your stealth to approach the door and maybe the trap will not see you.

How many Cantrips can you cast in one turn?

  1. Three
  2. One
  3. Two, using mage hand to cast another one as an bonus action
  4. As many as I want

You want to climb a wall. What ability do you need?

  1. Use Deception to fast talk the wall into letting you climb it.
  2. Insight to discover the true intentions of the wall
  3. Use your athletics to climb the wall
  4. Roll a history check to see who has climbed the wall before you

You find an axe with strange runes craved into the blade

  1. Try out your Sleight of hand and see if you hide the axe in your pouch.
  2. Use your Arcana check to see if you can recall that it might be magic
  3. Make a history roll so see if it has any lore attached to the item.
  4. Intimidate the axe into telling you what you want to know

One of your party members has been hit by a frost giant and is at zero hit points

  1. Use a medicine check to stabilize the dying companion
  2. Cast a heal spell to help them
  3. Use your action to pour a healing potion down their throat.
  4. Roll your persuasion to convince death that this not the droid they are looking for.

Your Dungeon Master has become hungry

  1. Quickly order a pizza
  2. You pick up your D20 and prepare to roll a saving throw vs bad things.
  3. Check to see if his chip bowl is empty and needs refilling
  4. You brought a shareable snack to prepare for these kind of events.

You are playing a Tiefling fighter with resistance to fire and a young red dragon breaths fire on you.  It rolls 20 points of damage and you have successfully made your saving throw.

  1. You take 20 points of damage
  2. Math is hard
  3. You take 5 points of damage
  4. You take 10 points of damage

You see a wounded giant bear come stumbling out of the woods and it looks angry.

  1. Beginning rolling a new character because you know you are going to die.
  2. Attempt to run away like the coward you are.
  3. Try to use your animal handling skill to calm the bear so you can tend its wounds.
  4. Attack the bear because it is already wounded and you feel lucky.

As a Sorcerer you are a…..

  1. A master of martial combat, skilled with a variety of cooking utensils and armor.
  2. A priestly champion who wields hand puppets of magic in service of a powerful Muppet!
  3. A spell caster who draws on inherent magic from a gift or bloodline
  4. A scholarly magic-user capable of manipulating the structures of reality

Your Barbarian jumps from a tower to attack the dragon below and rolls a one.

  1. Prepare to meet your faith
  2. Check your character sheet for inspiration so you can roll again.
  3. Roll a saving roll vs ground to avoid taking damage
  4. Go into a rage doing +2 damage to the floor on your landing.

The Bard in your group provides you with Inspiration and gives you a d6.

  1. You can use the d6 to add to the number of drinks you can order at the local Tavern.
  2. You can add d6 to your damage
  3. You can add the d6 to any saving roll you might make over the next 10 minutes of game time.
  4. You can give the d6 to the Barbarian because they need it more than you.

Your 2nd level wizard has three 1st level spell slots and you know seven spells.  You have an INT modifier of +1.  How many spells can you prepare to cast between rests?

  1. You can prepare all 7 spells to cast that day.
  2. You tell your Dungeon you are casting FIREBALL and see if they notice.
  3. You have 3 prepared spells you can use that day.
  4. You don’t need magic you have a dagger.

Your Dungeon Master asks you roll your d20.

  1. Is there something I should know about?
  2. Is the Dungeon Master out of food and drink?
  3. There is something lurking in the woods and I might be able to see it.
  4. The Dungeon Master is just messing with me again.

Hope you at least laughed at one question… Have an awesome day!