Actual Play – Little Torchbearers (10/13/2013)

torchbearer-rpgGM: Sean Nittner
Players: The Miller boys and my daughters
System: Torchbearer
Dungeon: Under the House of the Three Squires


Oket – Dwarf Adventurer (leader)
Brandon – Halfling Burglar
Jango – Halfling Burglar
Julia – Dwarf Adventurer
Black Bones – Dwarf Adventurer

The Play is the Thing

Turn 1 – Identifying the scales (Hunter Ob 2. Result: Success)

Instinct – Check for Traps (Scout Ob 2. Result: Success)

Turn 2 – Pull the pile of detritus off Brandon (Laborer Ob 1. Result: Success) (Check gained)

Turn 3 – Befriend the Great Dane which they named Daisy (Hunter Ob 2. Result: Success)

Turn 4 –  Fend off the Kobold Patrol (Handled as versus test due to time running out. Result: Tie. Tie breaker roll. Result: Success)

Hungry and Thirty all around

Thoughts on this game

Torchbearer, specifically character creation, has been my hardest gaming with kids experience. All of the kids wanted their own characters but the two youngest don’t have reading and writing completely down. Add that to kid general restlessness and I ended up with non-stop distractions. Most of the others games I’ve played with kids had quick character creation (like Cat or Fate Accelerated) or we had pre-generated characters (Mouse Guard, Pathfinder, and Dungeons & Dragons 4E). This was the first time I sat kids down for serious character creation.  My advice: don’t do it unless there will be some long term playoff (like a campaign game). For a one-shot, I recommend fast character generation, pre-generated, or half baked characters.

Names! Come with a list of them. This should be true for any game with any age of player.

Once we got started however, the kids dove in.  More so than most games I’ve played with kids, they really dug into the dungeon environment. A very confining space, limited social interaction, and strange places to explore fit really with the kid’s curiosity. They totally wanted to dig around ever corer to see what was there. They were also the only group that without a thought added the dog to their party, because of course we travel with a dog!

Despite having identical dangers as any other run of Three Squires this game had a decidedly “Boxcar Children” feel to it. They weren’t scared, they were excited.

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