was recognized at my local library, and it is not anything I would have given a second look. Truly it is an event for young kids and not a grizzled old grognard like myself. Cold pumping a session to strangers, kids no less, is not the game experience I'm looking for. But I ran a game of D&D 5e this afternoon nonetheless, with a bunch of kids and it was a great success.
About a month ago a gentleman contacted me through a game forum looking for someone to play D&D with his son. I responded that I was an adult and his son would need to get a game group started with his peers. A few more emails went back and forth between us and that was precisely the issue at hand. His son hadn't been able to get his friends to want to play. I sympathized. I informed good old dad that I had spent some time over the years trying to get a local game group together myself and our mountain town just didn't harbor folks with the interest. Aspen is all about the super athletic, the super rich, and those chasing the super rich. I could only wish his son luck and encouraged the two of them to keep on trying. Once he got his friends to play a session he would have no trouble continuing play.
Then a couple of weeks later I saw the library advertising International Game Day and I new what I needed to do. I got permission to run D&D at the event. I emailed the dad and said I would be running a game at this public event for kids and we should have a go of it. The hopes were, of course, whatever local kids joined in would be the kernel of a game group the kids would continue on their own.
Well the young tike padded the playing field and he got four of his friends to come along. This new player was going to make a fine DM, I thought. He has gone to great lengths to pursue his ambitions. I was also immensely pleased to see a girl was part of the group. He had a Monk, the rest of the group I handed out pregens. I brought B2 The Keep on the Borderlands. It worked for me when I was eleven. Why mess with success? I had my B2 conversion guide for 5e and there was a 5e Player's Handbook and Monster Manual available so I had all the tools I needed to drive this candy caffeinated train down the tracks for the next three hours. They went into the forest, they went into the swamp. Eventually they pushed forward on the main plot hook which brought them to the Caves of Chaos. Death saves were made, critical hits were scored, the shouting and disorganization mushroomed. It was awesome.
*Bonus points for Jay; near the end of the session a couple showed up. They have been living in the area for a year and had not found anyone who games. They were desperate enough for some D&D they had to take a chance, so I made some new contacts!