The (Re)-Emergence of D&D and Creativity
Last week, I wrote a post entitled “RPGs Get Creative” that focused on various ways role-playing games had become something more than just tabletop games. The storytelling and community aspects of those games lend themselves other creative fields, such as plays, television programs, and improvisational theater.
In many ways, the idea that D&D and role-playing games create a sphere of community is at the heart of our book (although we’ve not expressly follow that meme outside of game communities). And just as it was hard to find game designers who weren’t trying to recreate their D&D experiences in virtual spaces, it’s equally hard not to trace the creative lines of tabletop games into other entertainment fields.
It’s enjoyable to see this resurgence in the game and in the idea of tabletop games as something more than just mindless fun.
Last week I wrote about this play, which uses D&D as a central plot device. Apparently, it uses that device well.
In a time where technology was less advanced and being a nerd wasn’t as embraced, specifically Athens, Ohio in 1995, the Evans’ family is torn apart in a tragic accident, leaving only older sibling Agnes to pick up the pieces left behind while in the process of moving into her new apartment with the boyfriend of five years, Miles (Matthew Lindberg).
Agnes comes across her teenage sister’s written module, or D&D adventure, learning more and more about the world of interest she created through high schooler Chuck DM Biggs (Jake Burke), a heavyset fellow who often pokes fun at what people think about him on the outside, letting everyone know he’s big where it counts.
Game Master Brian Kelly leads the Dorks’ adventurers (played by Brian Paul, Teddi Bailey, Cullen Delangie and Molly Dowd Sullivan) through battles, challenges and skill checks while a troupe of improvisers act as the denizens of a living, breathing fantasy world. Improvisers include Michael Ficara, Glenn Provost, Robin Fowler, Kevin Baringer and more with special guest appearances throughout the year from Seacoast favorites.
In my quest to remove the “nerd” stigma of role-playing games, I found this piece rather refreshing. A non-D&D player sets out to learn how the game works, and what makes it so interesting.
You want my review of D&D? Fun on a bun. There aren’t many opportunities for us to put away the electronics and just use our brains for entertainment in 2014. D&D forces you to think on your feet, use a little improv and just have fun around a table with 6 people. Weirdly, even though we were in character, I feel like I got to know the people I was playing with pretty decently. The experienced players I was with couldn’t have been cooler about my noobness and were quite patient when I had a question. Would I do it again? Hands down. Yes.
The study group organizes a Dungeons and Dragons game to help Professor Hickey reunite with his estranged son Hank, played by guest star David Cross, in Community Season 5 Episode 10, “Advanced Advanced Dungeons and Dragons.”