A 5th grade girl at the school where I teach is running a D&D-like game at recess. The rules are posted below. I decided to interview her to get some insights.
Questing Beast: What are all these monsters that you wrote down in the rules?
Dungeon Master: They’re what you can be.
QB: What are the really unusual ones, like the Orazen?
Player: It’s like part dragon, part human. Also, in D&D, it’s also known as the Dragonborn.
QB: What about a Racsaca?
DM: They’re in D&D! They’re like a Tiger-person, with a mane..
QB: What’s a Fawnalese?
DM: It’s like a human that has an animal quality, like ears, or a tail, something like that.
QB: So it’s like a part Faun?
QB: What is a Bungee?
QB: Bunger, sorry!
Player: That’s what I am.
DM: It’s like a normal human, but when they get very mad they can become 3 times the size of a normal human, or three times as small, depending on the dice roll!
QB: They can shrink or get bigger? That’s neat. Ok, what’s a Zazen?
DM: That’s what you are. Remember? It’s like an animal that can speak and turn into other animals?
QB: It’s a shapeshifter?
DM: Yeah, yeah.
QB: Let’s see…what is a Dragonteller?
DM: Oh, you can’t be that!
QB: It says “No killing the Dragonteller.” What’s that?
DM: It’s hard to find the Land of Dragons, but if you find the Land of Dragons, you have to get past the dragons, and once you do all that if you find the Dragonteller, he can answer your questions, he can tell the future and the past…
QB: So he’s the most powerful person in the Dragonlands?
QB: Why are there 600 dimensions?
DM: …I don’t know.
QB: Because it’s cool?
QB: Have you gone to any of them?
Player: How many dimensions?
QB: 600 dimensions is what the rules say.
DM: Yeah we’ve been to some of them.
QB: Like which ones have you gone to?
DM: Nether…you can make up any of them…
Player: We went to this sky dimension, that had an evil part of the dimension…
QB: Cloud kingdom…it had an evil part, a good part…the evil part had the Lord of Death.
DM: The Lord of Death?
Player: Lava dimension, the acid dimension, the giant dimension…
QB: So it’s all different elements, basically?
DM: Yeah! No! You can make up any dimension, basically.
Player: There’s the giant dimension, where everything is huge.
QB: What does rainbowneum look like?
DM: It’s like a coin, and it’s rainbow.
QB: It says it costs 100,000 Wadroneum. What’s a wadroneum?
QB: Is is just another coin type?
QB: I’m really curious about he Cloud Kingdom. How do you get there?
DM: In ONE dimension, in one TOWN in that dimension, there’s a tiny door that leads you there.
Player: Also, you can be teleported into it.
DM: Someone can be like, boom, you’re there.
Player: You can ride up to it, you can fly up to it…but you have to FIND it.
DM: Yeah, you have to find it. That’s the hard part.
QB: Why did you start making your own roleplaying game, instead of just using Dungeons & Dragons?
DM: …it’s fun.
QB: It is fun, isn’t it? What things about it do you like better than the normal D&D rules?
DM: Well…you can have a special power.
Player: Well, it’s also that creating your own game, your own Dungeons and Dragons game…it’s showing how much you like D&D.
QB: What’s it called?
DM: Adventures in the Land of Dragons.
QB: Makes sense.
Player: It’s pretty much D&D, except there are different mosnters and stuff.
DM: You can be more things than you can in D&D. And you have special skills…and INSTEAD of having having just Intelligence and Wisdom, you can just have Mind, because that just takes less time.
QB: That’s true. That’s why I made mine, because I didn’t like the D&D rules as much, so I just made up my own. Where are you guys right now? What are your characters doing?
Player : So we’re in a dark manor that has a bunch of these doors, and we’re trying to find the owner, kill her, so we can get out of the manor.
Player 2: I want to kill her like a BOSS!