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 Post subject: Rifts....for kids
Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 1:26 am
  

Dungeon Crawler

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Hery all, I know this is going to leave me open to a lot of "candyland" or "spongebob" jokes, but trying to be serious here

I have a girlfriend with 3 kids, the oldest of which is 9 usually the three of us (me, gf and 9yr. old) play a game of heroscape on the weekends while her youngest watch a pixar movie elsewhere.

Now the other dayhe's in my "D-bee's of north America" book and starts asking questions and finds Rifts cool, but is still a bit fuzzy on roleplaying being like "heroscape, but without the board or the figures"

Now RPG's don't have a "8yr's and up" or anythign for what the suggested age for players is. But right now hopefully the idea of heroscape...with more math and dice" isn't too far off the mark.

Now I don't want to "give out XP like candy" BUt don't want the game to be too difficult either. The kid's attitude is if he fails/dies/dosne'nt get the treasure the first time, well then he must not be good at it and I don't want to ever play again

So bottom line He's playing a Wolfen Earth/Air Elemental Fusionist, while mom plays a human air warlock anyone have an idea for an interesting "first start" in rifts should be like? adventure/antagonist/attitude wise?

Somethign betweenmore mature than the care bear Coalition vs. thesplugorth of bokini bottom, but less mature than the assault of the topless altara warrior women at the brothel of death.


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Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 2:02 am
  

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Comment: I love how people are quick to make demands, make spurious claims and then play the victim when you call them on it.
Actually, it's funny you should mention this. In the radio interview KS did on talkshoe, he actually said that he wanted to try and produce an rpg for kids specifically.

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Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 2:17 am
  

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Dungeon Crawler

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I'm thinking a dungeon crawl format would be best. Maybe even encourage the kid to sketch a map as you go through so he can keep track of the path. It should probably be a single path with a few twists and turns, and a number of dead ends off to the sides to spice things up, with a clear goal that is achieved by reaching the end.

A problem with this would be the setting, since Elemental Fusionists get penalties in some environments and some spells have environmental restrictions as well. I'm thinking you should put them on a road in the forest, where the thick forest itself would act as the walls of the dungeon and the roads would serve as the passageways. Or, if you don't like that, then maybe try a network of canyons.

Instead of having doors as obstacles, you could have long bridges across a swift river. The bridge could be damaged and the group has to go down one of those aforementioned side roads to get an item that would help them cross. Or the same thing with removing a curse from the bridge, or there could be a powerful creature demanding a toll much higher than the group can afford, so they make a compromise to bring a specific item from one of those side dead ends. You get the idea.

As for antagonists, you could use all sorts of creatures. Maybe include some of the typical ones like orcs and trolls, add some Brodkil and Gargoyles, some generic human/d-bee magic users and hi-tech bandits, Coalition with Psi-Stalkers who attack when they discover the PCs are magic users, and some other big, slimy monsters. Pretty much anything that boys would think is cool to dress up as on Halloween, and anything that makes them go "ewww".

Good luck getting the next generation addicted :ok:


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Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 3:07 am
  

D-Bee

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I would have thought RIFTS was a bit too gloomy and violent for kids. But it might be cathartic, I guess.

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Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 9:41 am
  

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Wanderer

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Take a list which skills the char of the 9 yo has...

plan the dungeon (i also think a dungeon would fit best)
if fight, let him fight roboters (maybe even not humanlooking)
make some spiffy traps where he could use his wits (and skills)

just entertain him (and yourself of course)...
if you do that good enough his mom will surely be grateful *wink*

Both thumbs up to you for mastering for a child.... t´s not easy :-D


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 10:10 am
  

Hero

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RIFTS ... Scooby Doo!

*shakes head*

an RPG based around a board game would probably be the best appraoch to introduce kids into the world of role playing. after all, i can honestly say that Hero Quest was how i first got interested in role playing all those many years ago.

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Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 10:11 am
  

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Yeah... have your wife change her character to be a Wulfen too, and have them play as mother and son. She has to go out on an adventure and take her kid along too... I'm sure it happens all the time in Rifts.

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 12:45 pm
  

Dungeon Crawler

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Ironicaly I tried to get Mom (big Lord of the Rings fan) into Palladiam Fantasy and she made a Wolfer psi-healer, to introduce her to the rules she's walking down a road and runs into a orc vagabond...

well three or four rolls under 5 on her part a two nat twenties on my pat kind of killed her imgage of the wolfen


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 Post subject: Rifts
Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 1:15 pm
  

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I started playing when I was 10, the game was more hack and slash and killing badguys but it can still be fun.


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 Post subject: Re: Rifts....for kids
Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 1:23 pm
  

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bathawk wrote:
Somethign betweenmore mature than the care bear Coalition vs. thesplugorth of bokini bottom, but less mature than the assault of the topless altara warrior women at the brothel of death.


Shame; that second one sounds pretty interesting...

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Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 5:26 pm
  

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Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 16, 2007 3:56 am
  

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 16, 2007 4:13 am
  

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rifts for kids. easy. dont be a R rated gory GM.


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Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 16, 2007 11:15 am
  

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use the G.I. Joe option of everybody survives exploring vechiles and nobody dies

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Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 16, 2007 11:13 pm
  

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...and CS soldiers just tag everybody with laser pointers and wack d-bees with big padded clubs....

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"Trouble rather the Tiger in his Lair,
Than the Sage among his Books,
For all the Empires and Kingdoms,
The Armies and Works that you hold Dear,
Are to him but the Playthings of the Moment,
To be turned over with the Flick of a Finger,
And the Turning of a Page"

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 16, 2007 11:18 pm
  

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...actually that's a funky thought...
Have your regular Rifts players step through a Rift and wind up apparently someplace else, but in the same dimension....as with a point-to-point transport Rift...
Then the CS comes roaring up to them, outnumbering them, and blasting away, only the lasers aren;t doing any damage, the missiles are smearing everbody in the blast radius with paint or flour, and when the PCs don't fall down or stop moving, a CS officer starts blowing a whistle at them and yelling that they aren't following the rules!
Or a CS Juicer jumps them and whacks one of the PCs across the head with a foam rubber bat, screams 'YOU'RE IT!!!' and runs off at enhanced speed...

Yep...they've stepped into an Alternate Universe...Rifts...Rated 'G'....

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"Trouble rather the Tiger in his Lair,
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For all the Empires and Kingdoms,
The Armies and Works that you hold Dear,
Are to him but the Playthings of the Moment,
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And the Turning of a Page"

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 Post subject: Re: Rifts....for kids
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 16, 2007 11:24 pm
  

Champion

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bathawk wrote:
Now I don't want to "give out XP like candy" BUt don't want the game to be too difficult either. The kid's attitude is if he fails/dies/dosne'nt get the treasure the first time, well then he must not be good at it and I don't want to ever play again

So he's never lost at hero scape? Or do you basicly throw games to him?

Also, why stop playing hero scape? It seems to have a wacky number of figures. Just use it to play out some sort of rifts story.

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 Post subject: Re: Rifts....for kids
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 16, 2007 11:28 pm
  

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Palladin

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Noon wrote:
bathawk wrote:
Now I don't want to "give out XP like candy" BUt don't want the game to be too difficult either. The kid's attitude is if he fails/dies/dosne'nt get the treasure the first time, well then he must not be good at it and I don't want to ever play again

So he's never lost at hero scape? Or do you basicly throw games to him?

Also, why stop playing hero scape? It seems to have a wacky number of figures. Just use it to play out some sort of rifts story.
hey noon long time no see :D

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2007 12:23 pm
  

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The problem a lot of people have when targeting things at kids is that they either make them too simplistic and "kiddy" (i.e. the CS tagging people with laser pointers), or they over-estimate what kids can handle, and wind up giving them potentially scarring scenarios.

For a 9 year old, good scenarios are ones that let him be a hero, and will use the skills his character has. Since he's made a Wolfen Fusionist, how about tracking a kidnapped person (child or adult; making it a child might give it more immediate impact for him, but making it an adult will give him some feeling of "I'm playing an adult who's supposed to deal with adult things.")? Make the threat somewhat abstract... don't imply rape, because that's a bit much for a 9 year old, but killing and eating usually is fine.

Give him pointers while playing... remind him that area affect weapons will hurt his target if they're in the area. If he does it anyway, let him suffer the consequences... you warned him, he made his choice. Remind him of skills he has that might help, or just to look at his list of skills and consider what will help. If he gets truly stuck, make suggestions... but make two or three, along with ways they might help.

In other words, give him plenty of rope... he'll either hang himself with it, or he'll turn it into a lifeline.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2007 8:27 pm
  

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I think a good option would be for an elemental to confide in the Warlock about being summoned and abused by it's summoner.

Since both characters are elemental based it should be easy to motivate them with helping the Warlocks Big Brother.

It could be a straight up game of an evil shifter lording over some small town.

Black and White games are better for the younger generation.
As we get older we tend to like political and complicated plots along with gray areas, but as a youth I am sure many here enjoyed playing the good guys and saving the day.

It leaves one with a good feeling and a positive impression.
Any game that teaches team work might be good too, to promote working with others. Problem solving that is something on a level they can figure out would be great as well.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2007 10:31 pm
  

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Can't say I've read this book yet, but it deals with the problems of 'dumbing down' fantasy and play for children...

Taming Monsters, Slaying Dragons: The Revolutionary Family Approach to Overcoming Childhood Fears and Anxiety [Hardcover]
By Joel Feiner, Graham Yost

...the philosophical argument being that letting kids play out games like Cowboys and Indians, or similar (violent) pastimes helps kids cope with anxiety(in that they get to 'take charge' of a bad situation and hold it at bay...if not blow that little bugger to kingdom come...).

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"Trouble rather the Tiger in his Lair,
Than the Sage among his Books,
For all the Empires and Kingdoms,
The Armies and Works that you hold Dear,
Are to him but the Playthings of the Moment,
To be turned over with the Flick of a Finger,
And the Turning of a Page"

--------Rudyard Kipling
------------


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2007 1:22 am
  

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Knight

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use 1980s cartoons as examples. lots of action and no one died.


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Unread postPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2007 2:56 am
  

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Palladin

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Comment: Full of Love and C-4, give me a hug.
start them out as CS characters (good guys ) with the d-bees as the evil monsters and villians and that as they understand more the throw some good d-bees. take note of what tv shows they watch and how the action and combat is handle there to give you an idea

Or
my favorite , have a powerful npc mentor watch over them and offer advise or save them if it them get into trouble

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"Killing Dbee's isn't murder, they aren't human, it's pest control!"

Zardoz wrote:
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Unread postPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2007 10:25 pm
  

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duck-foot wrote:
use 1980s cartoons as examples. lots of action and no one died.


Recent new book 'The Dangerous Book of Knowledge for Boys' is an illustrated guide for kids to do all the sorts fo things our fathers did...from building tree forts and handmade bows to rabbit-hunting and the perfect water-bomb...
The author reminesces that in olden days kids at 6 got jack-knives and learned to whittle(my father certainly did) but we don't recall those days as the Years of Slaughter...

_________________
-------------
"Trouble rather the Tiger in his Lair,
Than the Sage among his Books,
For all the Empires and Kingdoms,
The Armies and Works that you hold Dear,
Are to him but the Playthings of the Moment,
To be turned over with the Flick of a Finger,
And the Turning of a Page"

--------Rudyard Kipling
------------


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Unread postPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2007 1:57 pm
  

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Hero

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Mark Hall wrote:
The problem a lot of people have when targeting things at kids is that they either make them too simplistic and "kiddy" (i.e. the CS tagging people with laser pointers), or they over-estimate what kids can handle, and wind up giving them potentially scarring scenarios.

For a 9 year old, good scenarios are ones that let him be a hero, and will use the skills his character has. Since he's made a Wolfen Fusionist, how about tracking a kidnapped person (child or adult; making it a child might give it more immediate impact for him, but making it an adult will give him some feeling of "I'm playing an adult who's supposed to deal with adult things.")? Make the threat somewhat abstract... don't imply rape, because that's a bit much for a 9 year old, but killing and eating usually is fine.

Give him pointers while playing... remind him that area affect weapons will hurt his target if they're in the area. If he does it anyway, let him suffer the consequences... you warned him, he made his choice. Remind him of skills he has that might help, or just to look at his list of skills and consider what will help. If he gets truly stuck, make suggestions... but make two or three, along with ways they might help.

In other words, give him plenty of rope... he'll either hang himself with it, or he'll turn it into a lifeline.


I agree with your way of thinking there Mark. Especially the part about not dumbing it down too much. I remember I started my first (real -- I tried D&D for like an hour once and thought it was ok, but the other players were kids too and didn't have near the attention span I did, and it fell apart really fast) RPG experience ever with Rifts Japan at the age of 12, and there was lots of gray: parts of the player group were actually part of a ninja clan ordered to sabotage the very gov't we were working for, but most of the rest of the group didn't know. Also, some of the very first enemies we had were human, or close to human d-bees. The greatest threat was still from oni, but there was still a great, more adult atmosphere overall.

I know 12 is a big difference from 9, but that's just as an example. Also, age isn't everything. Part of the reason I could deal w/ the more adult aspects of that game (I was the youngest there by 3+ years) was because I've always been older for my age. I also've known kids who were 12 and still acted like they were 8! So is your 9 year old kid older or younger for his age in your estimation?

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Unread postPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2007 12:53 am
  

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well the kid is apparentl bright and his mom says he was recommended for the "gifted" program at his school, and is good with numbers for his age. so not too worried about him figuring out the mechanics of the game especialy with mom as his teammate. My primary concern is when we played heroscape and lost a couple of times he didn't want to play anymore "I'm no good at it". Don't know if this is normal for kids his age since I don't have any of my own. But the boy likes to give up on things at the drop of a hat.

Not oo worried about the violence. I just have to keep sex out of the game (You burst into your Headhunter friends room to see a zenith moonharper on top of him about ready to tear his throat out, your friend seems oblivious,eyes closed and wrapped in ecstasy)
But mom is ok with violence she lets him watch CSI and aliens vs. predator, but not horror movies or "300"

So I kind of need help for opponents for one thing, given thier relative low power (mom has no ofeensive spells at first level, and his fusionist has like 36 MDC and attacks doing around one or two d6) Right now I'm thinking of two coalition trainees (1st level) who got lost on a training exercise (wearing old style armor and oly with old-style pistols, maybe one rifle)

My other concern is that he has an idea of what RPG's are like from playing videogames (plays Grandia II on my old dreamcast and Oblivion on my 360) where in a video game you 'll go up 3 or four levels every couple of days and finish the game around levels 40-60. Hoping he has the patience that after level 2 or three it could be months before he sees next level and reaching level 15 can take years


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 Post subject: Re: Rifts....for kids
Unread postPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2007 12:57 am
  

Dungeon Crawler

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Noon wrote:
bathawk wrote:
Now I don't want to "give out XP like candy" BUt don't want the game to be too difficult either. The kid's attitude is if he fails/dies/dosne'nt get the treasure the first time, well then he must not be good at it and I don't want to ever play again

So he's never lost at hero scape? Or do you basicly throw games to him?

Also, why stop playing hero scape? It seems to have a wacky number of figures. Just use it to play out some sort of rifts story.


Well we still play heroscape (I've spent way to much cash on those damn figs to stop now) More of ten than not he beats me, but my the skin of his teeth and a few lucky rolls. Mainly because he tries strategy in selecting his forces, while I just pick the cool charcters and save strategy for the game. He'll get down to only one or two figures to my four or five and start saying "it's imposisble for me to win" But I make him finish, and he ends up beating me with his last fig. I'm hoping this helps teach him not to be such a defeatist (plus giving him a dollar when he beats me at games helps)


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Unread postPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2007 1:23 am
  

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Hero

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Honestly, I'd have to recommend either HU or N&S as a starter setting for the kids. Both are a good bit more survivable than Rifts without necessarily losing much of the attraction.

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Unread postPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2007 8:53 am
  

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Hero

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Looking for lower power level enemies, an old gm of mine ended up just inventing a new race of SN wolf. It just had "high animal intelligence" so it was pretty tricky about tactics of surrounding and stuff, and it had 4 or 5D6 MDC and did 3D4 MD w/ it's attacks and 2D6 for a bite. They were increadibly easy to generate, which was great since the group (it was pretty big) fought tons of them. Now those are pretty wimpy alone, but get 5 or 6 at a time vs just 2 PCs and then it starts to be a bit more challenging. Super GM powers for stuff like that can be useful.

Also, what direction do you think you might go w/ this campaign? That'd be a major determining factor in enemy type.

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Unread postPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2007 10:47 am
  

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If I were running a game for kids, I'd focus more on non-combat challenges and adventure, and less on fighting. I'd also focus on the heroism side of things.

Rather than have them pull fish hooks up the faces of some pirates, you could have them save some kids from an evil kidnapper who has enslaved them. Rather than have them blow the heads off of some CS grunts, you could have them tie them up and send them in for trial for murder. Have them remove obstacles, solve problems, talk people into things, and maybe include a little bit of fighting that doesn't seem too scary for them (or make them insensate to violence). They could heal an injured fairy that then befriends them, learn some cool magic, discover the cure for a disease that's plaguing the countryside, find a hidden treasure that helps a starving family survive, or scare a monster that is scaring them that is bothering them.

Think of books that are adventurous for kids and run with the ideas given in them. The Indiana Jones stories are good, as are many of the Star Trek episodes. The Narnia books are good sources of ideas. So are the Tolkien books.

Those are my ideas anyway.

-Dennis

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Unread postPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2007 10:48 am
  

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Palladium Books® Super Fan

Joined: Tue May 04, 2004 4:56 pm
Posts: 3852
Location: Wishing Rorschach would catch up with me.
demos606 wrote:
Honestly, I'd have to recommend either HU or N&S as a starter setting for the kids. Both are a good bit more survivable than Rifts without necessarily losing much of the attraction.


Both would be EXCELLENT. So would TMNT.

/Sub

_________________
There's a reason...and a very good one...that I have certain people in this forum blocked both here and on Facebook.

I can see an illustration of that nearly every time I come here.


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Unread postPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2007 1:10 pm
  

D-Bee

Joined: Fri Oct 29, 2004 3:57 am
Posts: 16
first off i would like to state that i have many gamer friends that started as young as 8 or 9, and it is more about the mentality of the child when questioning if said child is mature enough to game, some are and some just arent. but if the child can handle a game like heroscape and knows the difference between a game and real life then i see no reason why not to allow them to play, if only to test the waters.

as far as settings, i do agree that the HU and TMNT settings would be alot better for breaking them in then a straightup rifts game. (remember, even with their weapons, the turtles almost never acually killed anyone.. if ever).

but then there are alot of RPGs that are ALOT more kid friendly, both in setting and in system.. elfquest comes to mind (good luck finding it if you dont still have a copy from 1980 :-p ), as does "Toon", a cartoon set RPG.

i guess in the end it is more about the child, for instance, i was one of the first kids in my family (big farm family, 7 cousins), to be allowed to watch an "R" rated movie or play games that were more violent or gory, because even as a child i understood the difference between a movie and real life.

Admittedly i am more then alittle desensitized as a result, but i never shot up a school, never robbed a bank or made a bomb threat (jokingly or otherwise).


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Unread postPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2007 8:01 pm
  

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Joined: Sun May 14, 2006 1:23 pm
Posts: 682
I just say, for the kids,

Turn the gore down.

Turn the comic bookish aspects up (GI Joe rule... YEAH!)

And make a lot more adventures which are about misunderstandings. Where the heroes can solve the issue without killing anyone (it may require some sneaking, tricking, stealing, learning, or fineagling), but turn the level of 'irredeemable evil' down.

If you need cannon fodder, use ARCHIE-3, a sanitized version who's mean but doesn't vivisect people.... then again, that's what Archie-3 has been for the last 15 years... I miss his vivisections, I really do.


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