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Subject: RPGs for kids rss

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Greg Denysenko

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My 10 y.o son would like to try an RPG- something like D&D, or space setting-

Those Rpg players- what would you recommend- I have a ton of old D&D stuff I collected a few years ago (original 1980's stuff). I have looked at the new books but don't care for them- the layout, the small print is a turn off. What about other systems- Hackmasters, Battlestations? Or should I start with Keep on the Borderlands- as I did 20+ years ago? Keep in mind I don't want something too racy, or overly gruesome-




 
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David Culp
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I would not recommend any RPG's for kids. Those rocket propelled grenades are pretty dangerous. I know, Ive had one shot in my direction before.
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Mark
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I like basic DnD for kids. You know the boxed set with the red dragon on the front. It's simple and captures _something_ that the whiz-bang of v. 3.0, 3.5 and 4.0 do not. I've run my girls (9 and 13) in the module that is in the back of the book, and it went over well... although my 9 y.o. wasn't too much into fighting things, so it happened that quite a few of the monsters could be befriended or tied up.
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David Culp
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In all seriousness, I agree with the above post. I think the original, Basic D&D is perfect for younger kids. It is simple and easy to understand and has a flavor and style that the newer editions just dont have.

Maybe its just nostalgia on my part but I remember the older basic D&D sets with MUCH fondness. RPG's are supposed to be about the story and when you have multiple 100+ page rulebooks it takes away from the story. The rules should be a framework in which you build the story, they should be as transparent as possible. The old D&D had that.
 
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J.L. Robert
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What has your child been watching on TV?

Warner Brothers cartoons? Find a copy of Toon, from Steve Jackson Games. The hardest part will be explaining to a 10-year old what "Chutzpah" is.

Anime? Pick up Big Eyes, Small Mouth, last published by White Wolf's ArtHaus Games. It's a bit more complicated, but the game themes can be tailored to favorite anime series.

Still unsure? Don't want to break out the old D&D stuff? Give GURPS 4th Edition a try. The core rulebook gets you started, and the sourcebooks can be acquired based on your son's personal interests.
 
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Herb Petro
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You mentioned a space setting, so how about the brand new version of Traveller from Mongoose Publishing? Plus there are tons of free material on the many fan created web sites, such as Freelance Traveller, Traveller Downport, The Zhodani Base, and The Traveller Map.
 
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Warren Sistrom
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While I agree with others that old Basic D&D may be a good start, if you are looking for some newer games, Indie Press Revoultions has a recomendations list of Child-Friendly Games they sell. Indie Press are mainly an RPG publisher, though two of the eight games on this list are not RPG's, some of them may be of interest to you.
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mike hibbert
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Noogs wrote:
although my 9 y.o. wasn't too much into fighting things, so it happened that quite a few of the monsters could be befriended or tied up.


Brilliant!

Thanks, that made me smile on a rainy bank holiday morning!
 
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Yoki Erdtman
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This is a great resource for roleplaying games that play well with children.
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Jared Davies
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My very first RPG experience was with the D&D basic set at the age of 10. My friend and I sat down to play one night on a sleep over and I still remember vividly the feeling of pure wonder as I explored the labyrinth with my fighter,looking for the minotaur and its treasure. I was hooked. So many great memories.
You can tailor it to your kids as well, you know whether they will enjoy lots of fighting or a less violent adventure. Just let em loose, they will have a ball.
 
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Andy Leighton
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Old D&D/AD&D would be fine.

For SF you might be able to use the new Traveller (but Traveller has always been a crunchy set of rules). Mongoose Traveller is reportedly a pretty reasonable version of the game (a few niggles in spaceship combat and damage vs armour).

You might be able to find old Star Wars D6 stuff easily enough and that would play OK and would get a bit of name recognition from the kids.

I have been aching to get Savage Worlds played (although we are mostly a group of lapsed RPGers) although to do a good kid friendly SF setting you would have to do most of the work yourself. Of look at one of the conversions on the net. The rules crunchiness seems about right for quick pulpy adventure. Being generic it can do fantasy stuff as well as SF (and modern). Most of the commercial settings don't seem to do much for me (although I like Rippers - but that isn't a game for kids, and Solomon Kane).
 
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Philip Thomas
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If you know the current D&D system it would be easy enough to adapt it for kids: there are plenty of rules you would leave out during the first few adventures of any party of heroes. The advantage over the red box would be more scope for development. Also there are some splendid illustrations in the various monster manuals. I've shown those pictures to kids who have never heard of D&D and got some excitement and interest.

If you don't know the current D&D system then ignore the above: it takes time to learn and is about to be replaced by yet another new edition.
 
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Simon Lundström
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ANY roleplaying game.

As long as you set up the scenario, you can use any setting that you like. If you don't like violence, then don't allow it.
 
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Philip Thomas
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Well, maybe any RPG could be adapted. I think some are going to be quite tricky though. Call of Cthulu springs to mind.
 
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Simon Lundström
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Well, OK, unless you really TRY getting a kid-unfriendly RPG (say, those that only has Dismember, Torture and Rip Guts Out as only skills).

Any fantasy setting will do, I think. Depending on what world the kid likes to adventure in.
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King of All Simians — Not a Mere Diplomat
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From another thread; it was focused on nonviolent RPGs, but my recommendations stand...


I've played a really fun "season" of Primetime Adventures, and recommend it highly. It's pitched at recreating adventure TV shows like Buffy or Firefly, but the next time I play it I totally want to do a sit-com, and you could easily play a soaper like Dallas or Dawson's Creek, a cartoon show, a doctor or police procedural... The mechanics are so simple that they can be pushed in any direction.

For younger kids, I'd even say that letting them choose one of their favorite TV shows, each of them taking the part of a character, would be a great way to jump in. Starting a creative project with an absolutely clean slate can be daunting; if you use a preexisting show, they don't have to worry as much about creating a brand new character or trying to wrap their heads around a world built totally from scratch.

After they're comfortable with collaborative storytelling, they'll probably be itching to come up with their own ideas. Campaigns in PtA are "seasons," consisting of 5-8 "episodes." Since this is relatively encapsulated compared to traditional RPGs with sprawling, epic, storylines, it lends itself to short runs and trying out different things.

I also own Cat, and it looks really neat though I haven't played it yet. Players take the role of cats, who are secretly engaged in a long war against bad spirits and goblins and the like; they are all charged with protecting the people they live with. There is some combat in the game; much of it is mystical in nature and you could emphasize that side of things, rather than claws and teeth.

Another game that I think would appeal to younger folks is Grimm. It's a d20 book, where all of the characters are kids. Instead of character classes, you have school-age archetypes: the jock, the nerd, the bully, etc. They pass through a gate to a Grimm fantasy world, and have to find their way back home. There's some violence, as the Grimm fairy tale setting would imply, but again it could be ratcheted down pretty easily. One thing I really like about the game that could make it worth exploring is that it really focuses on the personal transformations of the kids. For instance, as the bully gains experience, they realize that they should use their size and intimidation skills to help people weaker than them. Eventually their character class changes and they gain new abilities to reflect their new direction. Some really cool ideas at play, here.


Here's a link to the IPR order page for Primetime Adventures; you can find Cat there, too. Grimm can be found wherever you buy d20 RPG stuff; Amazon, etc.

http://www.indiepressrevolution.com/xcart/product.php?produc...
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Greg Denysenko

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Thanks so much for the info!
 
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Eric
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For a space setting, Star Frontiers (the old TSR game), is a simple game, and everything is available free (and apparently legally) at www.starfrontiers.org or www.starfrontiers.com . Plus all the adventures are available either in PDF or HTML format. I think it's less gruesome than D&D, but that's me!

Also, if your sons are anything into Star Wars, the new edition is apparently very miniatures-friendly (not surprising), but it's probably easier for younger kids, then again, I don't have it yet.
 
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Geoff Hall
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waza wrote:
While I agree with others that old Basic D&D may be a good start, if you are looking for some newer games, Indie Press Revoultions has a recomendations list of Child-Friendly Games they sell. Indie Press are mainly an RPG publisher, though two of the eight games on this list are not RPG's, some of them may be of interest to you.


What Warren said.
 
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Christopher Brandon
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Check out Dark City Games @ www.darkcitygames.com

Fun adventures that can be played by a group or solitaire! They have both fantasy and sci-fi adventures, all you need are some 6 sided dice and a pencil! Heck you could play it together rather than using a DM as they are in the "choose your own adventure" model. Each comes complete with game rules, adventure, map for tactical battles and counters to use when battles occur.

Each is a complete game for under $13!
 
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Greg Denysenko

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I guess I am wondering if old D&D is worth getting into- if he tries it and enjoys it- are there still modules out there that he can use- or is everything d20 now? I have to admit I love the old graphics better than the new stuff- nostalgic or whatever- I saw some system that had similar cover art (to the old stuff) but looks like it plays with d20 rules.
 
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Matt Mac
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Well, it mostly is D20 stuff now, unless you can find some good sellers of "old-stuff" who aren't calling their beat up and worn books from childhood "collector's items." Of course, 4th edition is comming out very soon, too.

My alternate suggestion is Grimm http://www.fantasyflightgames.com/grimm/index.html . It's a little dark, maybe, but all the characters are kids.
 
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Warren Sistrom
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gregd wrote:
I guess I am wondering if old D&D is worth getting into- if he tries it and enjoys it- are there still modules out there that he can use- or is everything d20 now?

I don't think you would find any new material for older D&D editions for purchase, virtually all is going to be d20 or OGL (Open Game Liscence) There is however a big community supporting older editions, including new adventures at http://www.dragonsfoot.org/ And while some items are becoming sort after by collectors you can still buy a lot of older stuff at reasonable prices off places like ebay. The Acaeum collects data on the going porice off all early D&D material, remember their base prices are for mint condition items still in shrink wrap, so if you are just looking for a copy good enough to play you will get it much cheaper. Finally I almost forgot almost all the old material is available as PDF's, some for free off the curent D&D site, most for purchase from several place, try Paizo & DrivethruRPG are the first that spring to mind but I think there is more.

gregd wrote:
I have to admit I love the old graphics better than the new stuff- nostalgic or whatever- I saw some system that had similar cover art (to the old stuff) but looks like it plays with d20 rules.

Two things I can think of you may be refering to here:

*Goodman Games makes the Dungeon Crawl Classics line of adventures that use the d20 system and are fully compatible with 3.0/3.5 D&D but have a style, both in an adventure content and artistic/layout sense, of the earlier D&D modules. To quote the site: "Dungeon Crawl Classics don't waste your time with long-winded speeches, weird campaign settings, or NPCs who aren't meant to be killed. Each adventure is 100% good, solid dungeon crawl, with the monsters you know, the traps you fear, and the secret doors you know are there somewhere."

*Troll Lord Games makes the game Castles & Crusades that uses the OGL, so it is based on D&D 3.5 system, but they have made the game much simpler and based much more on the original Dungeons & Dragons. It also is the system Gary Gygax (Co-designer of D&D) supported and was writing material for until his passing earlier this year.
 
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Greg Denysenko

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*Goodman Games makes the Dungeon Crawl Classics line of adventures that use the d20 system and are fully compatible with 3.0/3.5 D&D but have a style, both in an adventure content and artistic/layout sense, of the earlier D&D modules. To quote the site: "Dungeon Crawl Classics don't waste your time with long-winded speeches, weird campaign settings, or NPCs who aren't meant to be killed. Each adventure is 100% good, solid dungeon crawl, with the monsters you know, the traps you fear, and the secret doors you know are there somewhere."

That's it!
 
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Diz Hooper
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How about Star Wars Saga edition? It's set in a world that should be pretty familiar to almost everybody. Also, I think as long as you're GMing, just about any system is fine. The GM has the burden to know the rules in and out. First time players generally don't know much about the rules whether they are children or adults.
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