Fast-Track Dungeons & Dragons

Confession time: I haven't played a role-playing game since 2004. I haven't had the time, what with school, work, and kids. And most importantly, blogging. It'd be really hard to get back into it, not only because of the 3-5 hours spent in a typical gaming session, but the enormous amount of time necessary to get up to speed and be prepared for a game.

That's why I'm interested in a new development by Wizards of the Coast, which hopes to lure back busy, older people like me. They've come up with a simplified version of Dungeons & Dragons.

The new "D&D Encounters" provides all the materials needed to run a D&D game, but in a relatively short period of time. The goal, said brand director Liz Schuh, is to get those former gamers rolling the dice again.

"We wanted to try and create experiences to fit in their current time frames," Schuh said. "It is also an opportunity to learn the new rules system."

"Encounters" has premade characters and a premade adventure provided to the game's referee and storyteller, the Dungeon Master. Maps, tokens, game pieces and player aids, such as bonus cards, are all included.

The adventure is spread out over 12 weeks, but it only takes about two hours to play each week's encounter. Mark Watkins, a Dungeon Master for the "Encounters" game at Ravens Nest store in Marietta, Georgia, said the new version is simple and timely.

"It is very easy to DM. They give you everything," Watkins said. "This is really good for people to drop in and play."

Link via Nerd Bastards | Official Website | Photo by flickr user House of Sims used under Creative Commons license

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