Roll the Bones: Roleplaying Gave Me...By: talonkane posted at Feb 26, 2011 4:53 am
On January 26, 2010, the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit upheld a ruling to ban Dungeons and Dragons in prison (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/27/us/27dungeons.html). In the New York Times article, a prison official was quoted that Dungeons and Dragons could “foster an inmate’s obsession with escaping from the real-life correctional environment, fostering hostility, violence and escape behavior”. I don’t know about you, but I can’t recall many of my Dungeons and Dragons games being about prison breaks. I remember seeking lost treasures, stopping evil wizards from destroying a country, and even saving a princess or two.
Roleplaying games in general have always received terrible press from the mass media. Back in the 70s it was believed the games would make you believe in Satan and become a mass murder. I believe that roleplaying does foster some ideals in people, but not the ones that prison officials state. So, I started thinking, what did roleplaying bring in me? I’ve been playing and running games for over 27 years so I’m sure roleplaying did something for me, right? So here’s a list of things I feel roleplaying has fostered in me:
Creativity – I love to write stories. I even completed a novel. Roleplaying games give me settings to bring my stories to life through my players. I feel honored when a player brings up “Do you remember when…” from a game that was over 10 years or so ago. How cool is that to have your players remember the stories you created? And even better to see how those players helped developed the story! I keep looking for new games to see what other stories I can create and what characters my players decide to bring to life.
Relationships – I have made so many friends through roleplaying that I’ve probably lost count at this point. When I go to Gencon, there are people I see once a year and talking to them is like we just saw each other yesterday. Roleplaying gives people the opportunity to have face to face social interaction and build some truly great friendships. True story, I actually met my wife through a roleplaying game I was running. The short version is one of my friends (and players) asked if she could come along to be an observer. I’m not keen on observers at roleplaying sessions, because I find that terribly boring. But, I said she could come if she created a character and played. She agreed, we met, we talked, she kept coming to games, we started dating, and now we’ve been married 10+ years with a beautiful son.
Mental Relaxation – Let’s face it, real life can sometimes suck. We have issues at work, issues at home, and sometimes we just want to take a break and get away from it all. A roleplaying session with friends is a great way to get away from it all, even for a few hours. And when you get friends together, you get a chance to vent your frustrations and problems and (hopefully) have people who care enough to listen. I look forward to seeing my group every week to play and gab.
Problem Solving – Puzzles and problem solving play a significant role in most roleplaying adventures. It forces the players to have to sit and think about the problem at hand. And with your group of players, you start to talk through how to solve the problem or puzzle or defeat the trap in the game. One person comes up with an idea or thought and before you know it you’re in a full blown brainstorming session. Or you’re forming a strategy to defeat the bad guys. You’re learning to be innovative, coming up with new ideas to solve your problem. Or you figure out a way to make a standard skill, power, or spell, into something truly unique. At work I’ve always been able to look at the problem and start talking about how to tackle it with my co-workers or boss and usually figuring out a solution to it. It’s no different than doing it with your roleplaying group.
Open Mindedness – This one sounds weird, I’m sure, but stay with me here. As I’m sure you know, roleplayers are stereotyped frequently as people who some could say are social outcasts. They don’t fit in with “normal” society. They live in their parent’s basements. They eat tons of junk food. And I’ve met people who fit this stereotype numerous times. I think most people turn a blind eye to them and would never want to talk to them because of the way they look or act. But if my social circumstances were different, I could be that stereotype too. Roleplaying has helped me to interact with people of all ethnicities, people with disabilities, people with different sexual orientations that my own, and people who are just socially different from me. And what did I learn from roleplaying with them? They’re people. They have feelings, wonderful thoughts, incredible ideas, and great stories to tell. I’ve learned not to judge them for being different, but instead give them a chance to show me the person they are.
For those naysayers who think roleplaying fosters morally wrong and destructive habits, I challenge them to sit down and play in one roleplaying session and see how wrong they are. Roleplaying had a positive impact on my life and I don’t regret any of the time I’ve spent on it. If it wasn’t for roleplaying, I wouldn’t be here now writing this article, looking at my beautiful wife across the table, and thinking about my wonderful son, sound asleep.
Bookmark and share to your friends
Hot Articles Weekly
Nintendo says No! No! To youtube monetize system.
3027 views 31 comments By Pelagato
Recipe for a master mmorpg?
2917 views 40 comments By Katling21
[First Look] Arcane Saga (CBT)
2308 views 22 comments By Zugai
F2P Weekly News #1 May 10th
2100 views 9 comments By Spammie
F2P Weekly News #2 May 19th
1828 views 6 comments By Spammie
Why i love my Whipper
1718 views 14 comments By CassieChu
[Review] Fishing Hero (CBT)
1516 views 14 comments By Zugai
Gun Ban Coming To Gaming?
1300 views 35 comments By Ammunition
Throne of Thunder Cross Realm Enabled in Patch 5.3
1235 views 0 comments By Stan D
Patch 5.3 The mounts you're interested in !
919 views 1 comments By Stan D
- FFXIV A Realm Reborn: Instanced Dungeons (alpha Video)2 comments
- Jammy Dragon0 comments
- TSW Dungeon Guide: Darkness War4 comments
- TSW Dungeon Guide: Hell Raised0 comments
- Cradle of the Stars Update June 28th0 comments