TL;DR: DW is great, and my two newbies, the druid Aziza and the thief Trixie, and their magical rabbit just found a cure to a magical disaster by marrying the chieftain of a frogman village who really was a northern geologist.
Just had my first dip in the Dungeon World pool. Wow, the water is so inviting, but oh so deep. Joining me on this swim was my girlfriend and her friend. While I’ve been playing RPGs, mostly as a GM, since I got the norwegian version of the basic set sometimes in the mid 90’s, my girlfriend and her friend has never played.
I thought DW would be a nice place to start, and I believe I was right. Although there was a bit of fumbling, evenly spread among us, we managed to tell a nice little story and they really surprised me with the wealth of ideas and going against a lot of the stereotypes. I guess not being steeped in fantasy- and RPG-cliches since you’re young brings some other ideas to the table.
This might be a bit long, since I’m going to gush about the weird things that we played to find out.
In advance I asked my girlfriend what she wanted from the adventure, and she said: something tropical, maybe being lost on an island?
They ended up playing a Trixie, a halfling thief and Aziza, an elven druid from the sapphire islands. I asked where the thief roamed, and she said: “The Silver Forest, .” Ok, I replied. What is there for a thief to steal in a forest? “Well, the silver forest is far to the north where the northen lights sparkle in the shiny metalic threes. We get a lot of tourists, and we fleece them for everything they have.”
Cool, but how did you end up on a boat in the tropics? “Well, there is a horrible disaster coming over the forest. A magical drought makes all the threes dull.”
(This is gold, I’m thinking)
The druid set out to finde the horizon on a canoe, and got picked up by the very same boat when her canoe fell apart. They get washed up on the shore of a mystical island, but not before getting one final thing of the boat. What was it? I ask Aziza the druid. “Well, I heard someone calling out for help. It’s this magical rabbit, he’s talking to me and says he has a really good head for maps and always knows where to go. His name is Fritjof”
And so the adventure began. The druid smashed some pirates by turning into a walrus and smashing them into the sand with her fins. The thief fell into a piranha pool but got rescued by a falling walrus. She spouted some lore about the geological origin of canyons in the hope of getting out, and when asked how she learned this went into a long story about Georg Geologicus, this handsome geologist she studied under, I made a note. When the druid later discerned many realities about the frogman tribe about to cook their former captain for dinner, it suddenly became clear to me that Geologicus was really in control here. He had in fact been made chieftain. (I didn’t say this, I said the chieftain was in control, and that he was a human behind a mask. I still think I said what honesty demands?) When the thief got discovered sneaking into camp, she said she wanted to offer herself as a bride to the chief, if only they would spare the captain. And so they all avoided being cooked alive, and on the wedding feast, they discovered Geologicus and where very happy, because now they could work togethet to find a cure.