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Avia S-199 in Israeli Air Force Service

The family that games together

After completing a comprehensive two-hour tour of Charlottetown, PEI, we went looking for a game of Bohnanza to offer as a gift to our hosts.

Between the two gaming stores in Charlottetown, one had the fan edition of the game, which we bought along with Monty Python Fluxx. As we were leaving, I spotted a tempting box: the Dungeons & Dragons Roleplaying Game Starter Set. The price was $20.

Elvi and I met because of a AD&D campaign we joined, and we played for six years, until our young spawn became too numerous and antsy to allow us the hours required for a session. When we quit, the AD&D world was in its second edition; our collection of books, modules, and knickknacks filled a bookcase.

Since then, AD&D has reverted its name to D&D and upgraded its mechanics to fourth edition, an entirely new system – and the one in this boxed set, with characters and adventure ready to go. I had to buy it. Once I bought it, the family and our hosts had a plan for rainy days.

Our impromptu group has had so much fun playing this that we’ve wasted a few sunny afternoons, too. Our girls love the game. Child One is a precocious halfling rogue and Child Two uncharacteristically chose a dour dwarf fighter. They are really getting into the game, and have created elaborate backstories for their characters. (Child Three enjoys it but the game is a little slow for him. He and Elvi are teaming to play a dragonborne paladin)

As a DM, I have to say that this edition is much easier to play and manage after adjusting to the new rules. The rest of the group had never played before but Elvi was little bit amusing as it took her longer than me to adjust to the new rules, like the fact that Magic Missile no longer hits automatically.

I’ve downloaded some free low-level modules, and maybe we’ll get the full-fledged rule books. I’m not sure I like the plethora of player character races, but meddling can wait a while. For now, it’s great to have found an activity a family of geeks of varying interests can enjoy together.

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