About three weeks ago I won an ebay bid on the Dungeon Board Game. Man I was psyched! I played the crap out of this game with my friends back in the day. It must have been 20 years at least since I last played the game. It’s very difficult to find and even more difficult to win on ebay. Alas, it arrived on a Friday and that night the kids and I played a few games. We’ve been playing off and on now and tonight was the first night Erin was able to play. Man, it’s good stuff. The kids picked the rules up no problem and have been taking turns winning.
Seeing how they have taken to Dungeon excites me because this year I got the family the Dungeons and Dragons 4th Edition game. Now the wife insists that it’s more a present for me (I’ve acquired the Starter Set, Players Handbook, Monster Manual, and a few Tile Sets already) but I steadfastly hold, it’s gonna be a family game.
I started playing Dungeons and Dragons right before I entered Middle School (6th grade). I received the Basic Edition for my birthday and I remember the day I opened that box set up and pulled out the dragon dice and B2 – The Keep on the Borderlands. I spent hours reading the rules and that modules and then even more mapping out my own dungeons on graph paper.
I must say while I find playing Druids and Rangers fun, I think I much prefer to DM (Dungeon Master). That’s just me I guess. D&D not only piqued my interest in fantasy but it paved the way for other role playing games like Marvel Superheroes, Call of Cthulhu, and Star Frontiers. In fact, I could say that D&D was directly related to getting me into my comic book addiction.
Back when I started playing D&D the game was receiving some negative press by various groups declaring it was Satanic and that kids were killing themselves acting out the game. Sounds like the complaints against video games today, huh? Anyway, more so than being a game D&D was also an incredible tool for me in ways very un-satanic. You see, I was never the best at English and writing and infact I recall being in a remedial English class in 5th grade. I did not know it was remedial at the time, but looking back, yeah it was. But getting in to D&D helped increase my writing and communication skills to a point that, not realizing at the time, pulled me out of the remedial classes and into a life long love of literature and writing. I went from the lowest reading groups to the higer ones. I went from C’s and D’s to all A’s. I moved on to college working towards a minor in English (why I did not major in that I don’t know). I graduated and continue to enjoy reading and writing mostly poems and short stories. I had some work published, which was a thrill, and continue to rely on these skills as an asset.
Yeah, D&D really helped me out in ways unexpected at the time. I look forward to playing with the kids and further expanding their imaginations. A bit of time with the family away from the television lost in a fantasy world where we communicate in different ways, problem solve and hone both sides of our brains. Good stuff.