I’ve been proudly playing Dungeons and Dragons (D&D) since 1980.
Yes, 1980 was back when a number of folks feared that the game itself was evil. Jack Chick was worked up as was Tom Hanks. I still remember my mother talking to another friend’s mother, worried that we might be doing something to conjure up the devil.
Honestly, I’ve never understood this, as D&D more than anything else taught me the glory of the ideas of imagination, free will, and morality. D&D seemed not just the opposite of evil, but a very refuge from the evils that seemed to lurk on all sides of life back in 1980 (most of the chaos and evil was personal and in my very family, as I tried to navigate around and away from it all).
As soon as my kids were old enough, I introduced D&D to them, and we’ve been playing a family campaign now for over five years. We started with fourth edition, but we’ve moved into fifth edition. My oldest, however, is convinced that I will never fully leave first edition (AD&D).
This campaign has been one of my greatest joys as a father. As each child comes of age, she or he joins us. The imaginary world I created for this campaign has now become immense, and we’ve played it everywhere from Michigan to Colorado.
I’d love to be an evangelist for D&D, but I’ve really not had the time. If you’re looking for an evangelist, though, look no further than youtube master celebrity, Matthew Colville. Armed with enthusiasm and experience, Colville does an amazing job of introducing new players to the game–the spirit of the game as well as the mechanics. If he can’t convince you to try the game, no one can. For the most part, his videos are Rated PG, but every once in a while, a word creeps in that’s PG13. This is just a simple warning, not, I hope, a preventative. Colville is as likely to quote Captain Kirk as he is Thomas Aquinas! Which is a huge part of the fun of his videos.
It’s as though a Gary Gygax of my generation has arisen. Amen. Thank you, Matthew. Thank you grandly.