A co-worker introduced me to rpgKids last week. After taking a look around the website, I plunked down the $5 and bought the game and the adventure pack and it was well worth the money.
rpgKids is a basic roleplaying game meant to introduce kids ages 4-7 to the wonderful world of using their imagination to roleplay. The 24 page PDF includes the ruleset, an overview of the characters, hand drawn tokens for both heroes and monsters, a character sheet and a printable 1″ grid for mapping your adventures. It also comes with with one adventure for you to run through with the kids, and the Adventure Pack (if you buy the $5 version) includes 4 more adventures. The age recommendation was perfect, as Zoe is 7 and Jack is 5.
I packed up the kids Saturday morning and we headed out to our local game store. While you don’t need to, we picked up a bunch of used miniatures for $2 bucks each for the game. The tokens included in the PDF would have worked fine, but I wanted to give the kids that little extra experience. We also picked up some dice – you’ll need a couple D12 and D6 dice for the game – I made sure to get each of the kids their own.
The included adventure gives you the overview of the story, a script to follow (if you choose) and 4 encounters, including maps, where you’ll run into the “monsters” as you try to save the town of Springwell.
The kids choose their class (fighter, healer, wizard or archer) and you as the parent play the role of Dungeon Master, keeping the kids on path in the story and role playing the monsters in each encounter. The kids had a blast as I roleplayed the monsters, especially the funny voices, and added to the script to make sure they were having a good time.
Zoe got it right away – she quickly named her character as they filled out their character sheets and chose a class, while Jack didn’t really get it until we were in the middle of the story and having our first encounter with the monsters. Alex, who is 15, came and watched – as my wife later pointed out, you could tell that he thought he was too cool to play with the little kids, but deep down, he really wanted to.
Combat is simple – roll a die for initiative, then the monsters roll against the heroes to see if there is a “hit” – 2 hits and the character or monster is knocked out. Depending on the class, you can attack from so many tiles away, adding a level of tactics and strategy to start the kids learning. My Dungeon Master skills are a bit rusty, but thankfully the script kept the story going and I embellished and added to the story where appropriate.
They definitely enjoyed it and were asking to play again – this will definitely be a great way to get through the long Minnesota winter. If you have a kids, I highly recommend rpgKids and it definitely lays the groundwork to introduce D&D when they get older. Who needs video games anyway?!