Ensnaring the Unwary
Nico: I’m bored, I wanna play something.
Chatty: Do you want to play World of Warcraft? Some Magic Commander? How about some Poker?
Nico: Hmmmm, I don’t know…
Chatty: Okay, join me in at the kitchen table then, I’ll teach you a new game.
Nico (wary, as always when I get all mysterious): What kinda game?
An adventure game. Trust me you’re going to LOVE this one.
Oh, what’s it called?
Hmmm… it’s called CASTLE DEATH!
Oh cool! How does it play?
(Hook line and sinker!)
Chatty: It’s real simple. We play with a pad of graph paper, a stack of index cards and a d6. Here’s a card for you…
(On it I wrote “Name:” and “Equipment:” but Nico started doing his own brand of game design…)
Nico: What are my class and race?
Why do you ask? Do you feel you need them?
Yes. You know, because whenever I make a new character, I always combine the name of my class with that of the race I’m playing.
(That’s so true, in World of Warcraft he plays a character named Shamataur)
Chatty: (Adding “Class:” and “Race:” to the index card) Okay, what class and what race are you then?
Nico: I want to be an Orcish Berserker. My name will be Bersork!
That’s a fine name you have. Okay so if you’re a barbarian, I guess that means you have…
A huge, huge axe!
Niiice. And how about a metal helmet…
Of course and a loincloth.
All right then lets finish this with a large leather bag to hold your loot, a torch and a lighter.
Chatty: Okay so here’s how the game works. You explore this Castle. Whenever you want to do something that we’re not sure if you’ll succeed, you roll a d6. On a 1, something REALLY BAD happens to you, on a 6 something REALLY GOOD happens to you.
Nico: That’s neat! What about the other numbers?
We decide based on the story. Closer to “1” is usually bad and closer to “6” is usually good.
Chatty: Okay so you’re about to enter Castle Death, the most evil Dungeon in the kingdoms of man. You are an orc, what could possibly bring you to this dungeon? This means we need to create you a quest to explain why you came. Usually a quest means…
Nico: I know what it means dad. I’ve been playing WoW for a year. Lets say I need to find a treasure.
That’s a perfectly fine quest. Is your character looking for a specific treasure?
Hmmm. Oh! I know! Get those item cards you have! (He means the Paizo gear cards I purchased in droves in the D&D 3.5 era).
That’s a GREAT idea! Let see… You need to recover a (draws card) magical ring that’s hidden somewhere in the dungeon
Great! Let’s start!
And so Bersork made his way from the village of Outlets to Castle Death.
Up next: Exploration begins and Bersork meets the Ogre