Adding children to the group


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Grand Lodge

So I've been rping for years with pretty much the same group, we've gained a few and lost a few players here and there. Adding new people has always been a bit of a chore with me the GM being the decider. Anyways, I've grown up and had a kid. My son is 12 and has enjoyed playing with me in our bi-weekly solo game for 2 years now. But every other Saturday he sits out while the adults play "Pretend" with out him. I want to included him in my long running group but half of my players are boycotting the decision by threatening to leave the game. Whats worse is my son already made a character and overheard some of the talk about others not wanting to play with him. I strongly feel as the kid should play but my friends are very dear to me as well. Any advice? Has anyone else gone through this? I'm pretty sure I'm adding him to the group and rebuilding as needed. I can't run multiple games with multiple groups at the moment.


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My ex had a saying, "Children should be eaten and not heard."

Man, I am so not good at the advice-giving...


I'm in a campaign being run by my kid brother (who turns 48 tomorrow) and his son, my 12 year old nephew, takes part as best he can. I hope you can at least get your friends to let your kid have a crack at it.

I'm not sure why the adults would get their knickers in a bunch over something like this. I mean! As much as I enjoy Pathfinder, what we're really talking about here is playing make-believe. Kind of like we all did before we were eight years old. The only difference is that it involves expensive rule books.

Hope it works out for you!


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Blood over lame players that won't even give it a chance. Rebuild.

Grand Lodge

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I understand both sides of your problem.

On one hand, getting your kid into the game is great and can become a bonding thing. There is also, he has heard that others do not want to play with him, which is very hurtful for a kid.

On the other hand, some people do not want to restrain themselves/characters because of children. Would you want my Calistra (sex diety) worshiping bastard child magus in the same game as your 12 year old son? Even if you were fine with that, I am not sure I would be as comfortable.

Your choices boil down to include him, losing some of the group, or exclude him and possibly hurt his feelings.

Too bad you can not have 2 groups. It was my first thought while I was reading your post. It would also be fun if your friends had kids.

Actually, if your friends have kids, you could set up a kids group to play at the same time, different room of course.


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Hmm.... So the choice is to favor the child who wants to be an adult... or the adults acting like children...

I have also been on both sides, and understand your friends' concerns because I've been there too, but if they honestly expect you to choose them over your son then they are the fools. Are you a good dad? Will they get over being children?

On a related note, I consided it the responsibility of experienced gamers to pass on traditions to younger gamer. On the flip side of this, if this experiment works out your son should (and will) seek out a group his own age.


At face value, I would be leery of letting a teen play in a game with me; but is it really any worse than having them play a video game? If they won't, at least, let your son try his hand at RP, then they are prejudiced wrongly.

If, on the other hand, the players feel you might be playing favorites with your son, then they are prejudiced correctly.

I would recommend one of the players in your game where your son plays has a chat with The "problem" group about what your son brings to the table. A neutral opinion may hold more sway than you saying "My son is totally a great role player. Pinky swear."

Tabletop RPGs are cooperative games, and as such, without the cooperation of our pcs, there is no game.

If you can't find out why they have reservations, and if they flat out refuse to give your son (who wants to RP! Let him!) a chance, I would remind them that blood is thicker than water.


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I recently included my 6-year-old son into my gaming group. I'm not the DM, but we play at my house, so I guess I had a little more sway. I did ask how the others felt about it and they were OK, though I'm sure one guy would rather he didn't play. I know his limitations and he asked me several times if he could make a character and play. He really just wants to be included and I always feel badly having to send him off to find something else to do. Now, he can't sit through a whole session, so since I basically run his character for him anyway. He likes to roll the dice and I ask his input on lots of things. I take it over fully when he loses interest or starts to get antsy. He's actually had a couple of really good ideas and understands more than I thought he would.

That being said, you have to know, and be honest about, your child's limitations. It's possible that the people in your group who are opposed to him joining might be a little more honest about them than you are. On the other hand, it's possible that they are just being selfish and/or don't like children to start with.

My advice is to make a deal with everyone. Your son should have certain expectations placed on him for participating. Paying attention, not speaking too much out of turn, not arguing, being willing to listen to the advice of the other players, and generally not being a nuisance; things like that. You might even keep it light-hearted by saying that he has to fetch drinks for the group or something silly. As for the other players, get their input on the criteria and ask them to be willing to give it a trial run (or as Wil Wheaton might say, "Don't be a d*@%!) Communication with them is probably best done via email so your son doesn't overhear again. If your son has a hard time living up to the expectations, give him another year.

As for hard feelings on both sides, it's a teachable moment for your son, and for the adults it's time to put on your big-boy pants. These have potential to be great memories for your son. If no deal can be made, well, at the end of the day, he is your priority.

Grand Lodge

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Sorry, but I'm with your players on this one.

I recently had to leave a group I loved because of the GM's son. He also started playing with us at age 12. But see, here's the thing with 12 year olds: they eventually turn into 13 year olds! *gasp* What started out as him being a somewhat amusingly unfocused and easily distracted player turned into him being an easily bored and frequently hostile player who spent most of his time trolling the game. I tried talking to the GM about it, but that didn't go well. Having to talk to parents about their kids is never an enviable task.

Your players have spoken. If it's a longstanding group, I'd even go out on a limb and say it's pretty unfair and uncool to be foisting your kid on them. You are also showing that you're not terribly open to their feedback, which is not a good sign. In my own situation, I had to realize it was only going to get worse before it got better, where 'getting worse' meant tolerating increasing passive-aggressive behaviours and 'getting better' meant either he or I left the group.

Liberty's Edge

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I would seriously suggest not having your son play with your main group.

As a PFS GM, I usually have to simplify the game a bit when younger players join. While I and most players are OK with this occasionally, as a long term setup, I would not care for it.

Having young minds means that more complex story lines, puzzles, and role-play situations would need to be simplified...so those players looking for more of a challenge would be out of luck.

I suggest that you keep your game with your son as-is.

Although, if your son is mature, you might consider having him at the table as a young NPC for an role-play situation or two to add a little flavor and to see how he does.

Grand Lodge

Follow up question to the naysayers. What age is good to have a younger player join? My player suggested that he would never play with my son as the age gape is too big.


Could a compromise be made?

How often do you play? If you play once ponce per week, maybe he can sit in once per month...

Can a limited deal be made? He can play 10 sessions, and during that time he actively seek out another gaming group closer to his own age..

Can he be a part of the group in other ways? Running a few npc's or perhaps being the bad guy in a combat can teach him to be s good loser AND let you group work encounters in a new style... (prepare him that the plan is that he loses the figth...)


I've done a 1-shot including my 10-year old brother in the group. Wasn't an issue for anyone involved, and I think everyone enjoyed it. Just make sure you help him out so he doesn't slow things down, and that he's polite. If he can do those things, well, he's just as good as an older player. And young eyes might add a new perspective to some problems your PCs face.

If your players can't deal with it, that's their problem. They need to realize you're adults, and you have a responsibility to your children. Rebuild if they won't compromise. But try asking if they'll stay for a trial run 1st.


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I am afraid I cannot condone anyone who says, "Without ever having seen that player play, if you let him play, I walk."

Our kids really wanted to join our campaign. We let them. They didn't work out -- while they were fine playing simple characters (rogue, ranger, barbarian) and didn't slow down the fighting or interfere with the roleplay, they were too distractible. After a few sessions, I explained to them that because they couldn't focus on the game, we couldn't have them. They said, "OK," and dropped out.

There were no hard feelings anywhere.

So the notion of, "We won't allow even one game" suggests to me that your friends, for lack of a more polite term, are being a bunch of buttweiners.

Grand Lodge

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Ah age gaps. They are meaningless to be perfectly honest. I have played with teens and I have played with senior citizens. (I am upper 20s) Yes, the teens can be trouble, but you and the other players will not know till AFTER the teen has played a few games with you if they will fit in. Same as if the new player was 24, 48 or 96.


Give the Kid a chance...But don't change anything.If he wants to play with the "Big boys",let him.
I was a precocious 12 yr old at one time,that Grognards didn't want in their AD&D game.
It sucked.I eventually got to play and actually was an asset to the group.Not that they didn't try to kill me :).
Unless your Drinking or smoking Bud at the table it should be OK.


I'd likewise say give him a chance and see how it works out.

The only obstacle I can see is the distraction thing, as NobodysHome said. However, there's an abundance of (so-called) adults out there who spend more time texting at a game than actually playing the game.

So, the age factor is hardly a guarantee of maturity for something like a PFS game.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Starfinder Maps Subscriber

On Playing with Kids
I am currently playing in a mixed age game. The DM has his two kids (ages 12 and 14 in the game), another child of a different player who is 15 (and intermittent), and four adults.

The DM asked us outright if we'd be willing to play Emerald Spire dungeon in a campaign that had his kids. The 14 year old is awesome, saavy, and creative. The 12 year old is still trying to figure out her character, but then so is at least one of the adults!

In other words, the kids are fine. There are some aspects of them being kids that I fiind amusing. When my sorceress decided that she wanted to get a familiar, suddenly EVERYONE wanted a pet. The 12 year old alchemist bought a dog. The paladin bought a cat. We are now traveling with an entire entourage of animals, including donkeys, through the Emerald Spire dungeon. I am very, very amused by this.

If you rebuild, I suggest rebuilding with a new adventure, one that might excite your player group. Or put your old group on hiatus and suggest that you are going to do a test run of the Spire, with your son in the group. If others want to join for the test run, great! Once the Spire is done, you'll restart and see how everyone feels.

Now a question about your son

I should note that I am a mom of a 12 year old son who is not in the above group. My boy really is not a great team player. He loves games, but tends to be a bit of munchkiny-tyrant while in them. I'm running a separate kids-only game to get him better adapted to playing with others. He's slightly aspergers, very competitive, and needing a bit more social grace.

What is your son like? Is he thoughtful of others? Can he follow a strategic plan? Some kids are GREAT team players. Others are less so. What does your child bring to the table?

I am all for integrated kid / adult groups. I enjoy them. But be honest about your kid, and what he might bring to your group.

Good luck with this!
Hmm


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Hmm wrote:
My boy really is not a great team player. He loves games, but tends to be a bit of munchkiny-tyrant while in them. He's slightly aspergers, very competitive, and needing a bit more social grace.

Sounds like you're talking about my 14 year old daughter. And yes, I mean the entire quoted section. I have run a one on one campaign with her, but it's mentally taxing for me. Of course, the more I suffer through it, the more she loves it...


Popupjoe wrote:
So I've been rping for years with pretty much the same group, we've gained a few and lost a few players here and there. Adding new people has always been a bit of a chore with me the GM being the decider. Anyways, I've grown up and had a kid. My son is 12 and has enjoyed playing with me in our bi-weekly solo game for 2 years now. But every other Saturday he sits out while the adults play "Pretend" with out him. I want to included him in my long running group but half of my players are boycotting the decision by threatening to leave the game. Whats worse is my son already made a character and overheard some of the talk about others not wanting to play with him. I strongly feel as the kid should play but my friends are very dear to me as well. Any advice? Has anyone else gone through this? I'm pretty sure I'm adding him to the group and rebuilding as needed. I can't run multiple games with multiple groups at the moment.

Maybe just ask erveryone for a test run.

You can look you your son adapts to your groups playstyle. If it won't work out, just tell the boy.


Popupjoe: I congratulate you for reaching the point in parenting that you have likely been dreaming of for some time. :) I, myself, am a father of a 12yr old son who I started including in our gaming 2 years ago. It has been a great experience for both of us. I will say that I don't think there is a good "standard age" for when to start including your kids as it really depends on the kid. It has a lot to do with their maturity level and how well they understand this kind of interaction.

My son is very mature for his age. In fact, I think he is more mature than some of our other players who are over 40 and handles situations better (and more maturely) than they do.

As others have pointed out you have a couple of things to consider. Foremost is the maturity level of the group as a whole and the content of the game. You have to make a decision as a parent about what kind of things you want to have your child subject to. If you are OK with your child being around the kind of content typically explored at the game table then that is your decision, not theirs. They might not like it and may dislike it to the point of leaving but that is not your decision either, it is theirs.

I would be deeply offended by what your friends have said. "Never play with your son"... it doesn't matter what follows that statement. I would be offended and would definitely let them know. I would also make it clear that my family is more important than my friendship with them. I hope that is your priority as well. I would also make it clear that YOU intend on playing with your son whether THEY want to or not is up to them. I would also make it clear that your son has no such prejudice about them, they are the ones harboring such bigotry.

If I were in your position I would make a decision about whether your son is mature enough to handle situations like this as an adult. If you do not believe that he is then it is too early. If you do believe that he is then I would make your friends explain TO YOUR SON why they do not wish to play with him. If that is awkward for them then it is a problem that they have, not one that you or your son has. If they refuse then I would point out that they are handling the situation less maturely than your son as he is seeking a resolution for the problem rather than "taking his ball and going home".

I would like to note that the naysayers here do not appear to be speaking from the perspective of parents. I would pay more heed to the parents in this thread as they can relate more. I always hated it when people used to say, "you have to be a parent to understand" but now that I am a parent I can see where they are coming from. When you have to tell your child "no" to something you disagree with it causes problems for you. You do not want that on your conscience. If you think he is ready and disagree with them, let the players be the one to do that. They can show your son just how ageist they are being and explain themselves.

And if you still disagree with them I would point out that you think that your son handled resolution better than they did and you would prefer to play with more mature players. ... like your son. :)


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Also, Hmm: I always love reading your posts. I think you are insightful. Now that I know you are also a parent I can see why I thought that. If you lived near me I would likely love to game with you. I think our personalities and outlook are similar.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Popupjoe wrote:
So I've been rping for years with pretty much the same group, we've gained a few and lost a few players here and there. Adding new people has always been a bit of a chore with me the GM being the decider. Anyways, I've grown up and had a kid. My son is 12 and has enjoyed playing with me in our bi-weekly solo game for 2 years now. But every other Saturday he sits out while the adults play "Pretend" with out him. I want to included him in my long running group but half of my players are boycotting the decision by threatening to leave the game. Whats worse is my son already made a character and overheard some of the talk about others not wanting to play with him. I strongly feel as the kid should play but my friends are very dear to me as well. Any advice? Has anyone else gone through this? I'm pretty sure I'm adding him to the group and rebuilding as needed. I can't run multiple games with multiple groups at the moment.

Part of the thing being grown-up, is that you have to decide what's higher priority for you. Quite frankly if your friends are forcing you to choose between your child and them... I'd seriously suggest that you take another, more critical, look at your friends.

I can understand why some of them may want to bolt. There are certain locker-room behaviors and speech you really don't want to dish around children. And some of your players may resent the idea that they may have to curb their speech or behavior around children. Others see children as reminders of responsibilities they are trying to forget.

None of the above however really matters when it all comes down to you making a choice of priorities. I make no judgments as to which choice you should make.. because individual circumstances count for much in situations like this.

Shadow Lodge

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Popupjoe wrote:
What age is good to have a younger player join? My player suggested that he would never play with my son as the age gape is too big.

Did he say what about the age gap bothers him? Is it that things will have to be PG-13, or that your son can't handle the rules, or that he won't be able to handle complex plotlines, or that he won't be a team player tactically or in terms of sharing spotlight?

Age isn't exactly irrelevant and I can see why your players would be worried that your son would bring down the complexity or tone of the game. On the other hand, I've seen some very mature preteens and some very immature adults, so it hard to generalize when it comes to age gaps. Your friend's conviction that he would never play with your son seems a bit hasty.

I would recommend a trial session or two to see what the actual play dynamic is like, and then have the discussion again. Consider asking the more open-minded friends if they'd be comfortable mediating since they're less likely to be biased about how well your son works with the group. If after a fair trial people are still uncomfortable then you need to decide whether there's a better way for you to spend time with either your son or the friends. I would never suggest that someone choose between their kids and my friendship (among other things I know I'd lose), but that doesn't mean you have to build both those relationships at the gaming table. I have lots of friends who are gamers but we don't always play the same games.

Try not to be careless with these relationships. Consider wrapping up your current campaign (possibly to revisit later) and starting a new one if you're going to be restructuring the group around your son. It will likely cause less hard feelings if anyone who leaves doesn't feel like they were forced out of a running campaign because they didn't get along with a new player.


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Popupjoe wrote:
So I've been rping for years with pretty much the same group, we've gained a few and lost a few players here and there. Adding new people has always been a bit of a chore with me the GM being the decider. Anyways, I've grown up and had a kid. My son is 12 and has enjoyed playing with me in our bi-weekly solo game for 2 years now. But every other Saturday he sits out while the adults play "Pretend" with out him. I want to included him in my long running group but half of my players are boycotting the decision by threatening to leave the game. Whats worse is my son already made a character and overheard some of the talk about others not wanting to play with him. I strongly feel as the kid should play but my friends are very dear to me as well. Any advice? Has anyone else gone through this? I'm pretty sure I'm adding him to the group and rebuilding as needed. I can't run multiple games with multiple groups at the moment.

If you have multiple players threatening to boycott the decision and leave the game, I would be very hesitant to ignore them and add one player.

Not everyone wants to play with kids; but to get personal for a moment, I was the kid that joined the adult's table. Led to a most excellent childhood and then I was dm before I got my moustache. :)

Starting young is great, really good you can do it with your son - but be careful about pissing off the rest of your group.


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Lune wrote:

Popupjoe: I congratulate you for reaching the point in parenting that you have likely been dreaming of for some time. :) I, myself, am a father of a 12yr old son who I started including in our gaming 2 years ago. It has been a great experience for both of us. I will say that I don't think there is a good "standard age" for when to start including your kids as it really depends on the kid. It has a lot to do with their maturity level and how well they understand this kind of interaction.

My son is very mature for his age. In fact, I think he is more mature than some of our other players who are over 40 and handles situations better (and more maturely) than they do.

As others have pointed out you have a couple of things to consider. Foremost is the maturity level of the group as a whole and the content of the game. You have to make a decision as a parent about what kind of things you want to have your child subject to. If you are OK with your child being around the kind of content typically explored at the game table then that is your decision, not theirs. They might not like it and may dislike it to the point of leaving but that is not your decision either, it is theirs.

I would be deeply offended by what your friends have said. "Never play with your son"... it doesn't matter what follows that statement. I would be offended and would definitely let them know. I would also make it clear that my family is more important than my friendship with them. I hope that is your priority as well. I would also make it clear that YOU intend on playing with your son whether THEY want to or not is up to them. I would also make it clear that your son has no such prejudice about them, they are the ones harboring such bigotry.

If I were in your position I would make a decision about whether your son is mature enough to handle situations like this as an adult. If you do not believe that he is then it is too early. If you do believe that he is then I would make your friends explain TO YOUR SON...

It is easy to get offended, but he asked the players what they think and their answer was no, and if you force it, we leave. Now getting worked up over this is quite easy, and emotionally it can feel like an attack upon AND rejection of the son, but this dm did ask, and he did get his answer. It just wasn't the answer he liked.

There is no need for competition between the players and the son, or confrontation scenes where the dm has an agenda to declare his son more mature than the existing players. That will not end well.

The players have reasons and their own preferences in play. Asking for an answer and then getting angry at people for having a preference and position could easily wreck the game - which has been going on for some time without the dm's kid playing in it.

The players matter too, not just the son.


every great roleplayer starts out somewhere, and well, inviting a child to roleplay with a group at a young age will more easily build skills that they will have difficulty building if they build them during adulthood, teamwork, delegation, coordination, problem solving, public speech and all the general things you can pick up at toastmasters.

having a child learn to make a respectable collaborative personae or few in elementary school is better than waiting till they are in college and letting them play like another fatalite because they missed 15 years of social development to manga and console games, 7 of which were probably wasted to hentai and body pillows.


I'd let him in to play certain NPCs this way he will feel included, and when he starts getting distracted or is otherwise not being a productive player you can more or less stop him from playing by changing the scene to one his NPC is not part of. I would suggest making him a commoner of some sort...or maybe a noble child that is some how linked to the plot line and just grabbing him as needed for the story. This would include him without becoming a constant headache for the other players. Just make sure he understands where his character fits into the plot, along with the things you need him to do for your story. After a while and if he is still interested and has gotten used to the game, and if your more seasoned players start warming up to the idea of him playing you might be able to include him as a PC.


Ha ha, so anti-manga and anti-console games. Wow. Lot of dismissal of another form of pop culture there. Is Japanese pop culture the big bad for you? Why are you anti-console games? Do you think they build no skills and have no teamwork or problem solving across all the games of all the consoles?

Great points in the first paragraph and far less dismissal and mockery.


I think the problem sometimes is that the younger players occasionally do not have the maturity (that's one way to put it, another would be the understanding of how certain things work at the table, or in life occasionally) of a younger player.

Depending on the game, that can be a problem. Players don't want to end up being partial babysitters, or putting up with having someone babysit at the table (as in dealing with the issues that an adult dealing with a youth may have to do).

That said, youth, teens, young children, and adults can game at the table. Some youth and teens are very mature for their ages. Some adults are very immature. However, many may not want to take the chance or opportunity.

They've seen your son, and probably have a pretty good idea whether his idea of RP would gel with theirs. It seems half of them don't think it's a good idea. Perhaps you should do something that shows your sons maturity and ability to gel with the group before suggesting it or thinking about it again, and get a general feel after that whether they have changed their minds and opinions.


DM Under The Bridge wrote:

Ha ha, so anti-manga and anti-console games. Wow. Lot of dismissal of another form of pop culture there. Is Japanese pop culture the big bad for you? Why are you anti-console games? Do you think they build no skills and have no teamwork or problem solving across all the games of all the consoles?

Great points in the first paragraph and far less dismissal and mockery.

i actually like Manga and Console games, i just like to admit that the majority of them are designed to be extremely similar to other works in the same subgenre marked towards the same age range and admit that most manga and console games aren't very social activities unless you blatantly go to great lengths to make them social such as playing a multiplayer game or even paying a fee to play online.


Pretty smart Greywolflord. Yeah, no need to force it now. The child is going to grow up, which means plenty of time to get him into games in the future. Which means everyone can be prepped for this.

I would be a fair bit worried about bias to be honest. Popupjoe, if your son was foolhardy and as you look at the dice their character died horribly in a trap, would you give them a free pass? If so, how many times would you give them a free pass?


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Popupjoe wrote:
So I've been rping for years with pretty much the same group, we've gained a few and lost a few players here and there. Adding new people has always been a bit of a chore with me the GM being the decider. Anyways, I've grown up and had a kid. My son is 12 and has enjoyed playing with me in our bi-weekly solo game for 2 years now. But every other Saturday he sits out while the adults play "Pretend" with out him. I want to included him in my long running group but half of my players are boycotting the decision by threatening to leave the game. Whats worse is my son already made a character and overheard some of the talk about others not wanting to play with him. I strongly feel as the kid should play but my friends are very dear to me as well. Any advice? Has anyone else gone through this? I'm pretty sure I'm adding him to the group and rebuilding as needed. I can't run multiple games with multiple groups at the moment.

What motivations/reasons have they given for their objections? (Beyond an age gap- what about the age difference is significant?)

And how vehement are their boycotts? Have they explicitly said in such words like an ultimatum, or did they say they would rather sit out if such an event occurred? (The difference may be semantic, but that semantic meaning might indicate an emotional difference between the two responses.)


i would ask them to try a few trial sessions with the child and if the group wanted to play with their adult themes, simply allow them to do it, because high school and even college students get pretty raunchy, and most of that stuff i was hearing when i started roleplay in the 2nd grade or something like that.


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I'm actually on the player's side, I would "threaten" to leave the group as well, but not out of anger or trying to cajole the GM/housemaster to not include their child, but as a warning of what simply would happen. I won't have fun playing with a child around, i'll feel more uncomfortable than having fun, and so would leave because the game would simply not offer what I played in the first place for, fun.

I have 2 12 year old sisters who are getting into pathfinder, and it is simply a different game, I can GM for such a game, but would not be a player in one.


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Bandw2 wrote:

I'm actually on the player's side, I would "threaten" to leave the group as well, but not out of anger or trying to cajole the GM/housemaster to not include their child, but as a warning of what simply would happen. I won't have fun playing with a child around, i'll feel more uncomfortable than having fun, and so would leave because the game would simply not offer what I played in the first place for, fun.

I have 2 12 year old sisters who are getting into pathfinder, and it is simply a different game, I can GM for such a game, but would not be a player in one.

the children won't evolve towards your preferred path without you to guide and influence their development by example. and it is often easier for a fellow player to leave an imprint on a child than it is for the dungeon master because the dungeon master spends too much time preparing,

if when i was in elementary school, if i hadn't roleplayed along older players, i wouldn't have learned half as much as i did. think of it like continuing the legacy of the hobby or continuing the bloodline, the grognards won't live much longer, so we need to develop fresh meat for the hobby.


Auren "Rin" Cloudstrider wrote:
Bandw2 wrote:

I'm actually on the player's side, I would "threaten" to leave the group as well, but not out of anger or trying to cajole the GM/housemaster to not include their child, but as a warning of what simply would happen. I won't have fun playing with a child around, i'll feel more uncomfortable than having fun, and so would leave because the game would simply not offer what I played in the first place for, fun.

I have 2 12 year old sisters who are getting into pathfinder, and it is simply a different game, I can GM for such a game, but would not be a player in one.

the children won't evolve towards your preferred path without you to guide and influence their development by example. and it is often easier for a fellow player to leave an imprint on a child than it is for the dungeon master because the dungeon master spends too much time preparing,

if when i was in elementary school, if i hadn't roleplayed along older players, i wouldn't have learned half as much as i did. think of it like continuing the legacy of the hobby or continuing the bloodline, the grognards won't live much longer, so we need to develop fresh meat for the hobby.

Speak for your self...

"I plan to live forever."

Riker (well I think that's who it's attributed to...of TNG fame).


Ciaran Barnes wrote:
Hmm wrote:
My boy really is not a great team player. He loves games, but tends to be a bit of munchkiny-tyrant while in them. He's slightly aspergers, very competitive, and needing a bit more social grace.
Sounds like you're talking about my 14 year old daughter. And yes, I mean the entire quoted section. I have run a one on one campaign with her, but it's mentally taxing for me. Of course, the more I suffer through it, the more she loves it...

She's lucky to have you.

As to the OP, I'm gonna have to side with Rin on the side of "Actually, children are aware of the F-bomb." I'd even go so far as to say that if you pay attention and catch them using it in character, and have the NPCs react to that, it can impart a touch more self-control.

You may want to casually say "b%&*+" about someone who's got a rod up their butt, but when they're an Inquisitor of Iomedae with maxed out perception and melee skills, you'll watch your tongue, or The Inheritor is going to be very unhappy. :D


Westphalian_Musketeer wrote:
Ciaran Barnes wrote:
Hmm wrote:
My boy really is not a great team player. He loves games, but tends to be a bit of munchkiny-tyrant while in them. He's slightly aspergers, very competitive, and needing a bit more social grace.
Sounds like you're talking about my 14 year old daughter. And yes, I mean the entire quoted section. I have run a one on one campaign with her, but it's mentally taxing for me. Of course, the more I suffer through it, the more she loves it...

She's lucky to have you.

As to the OP, I'm gonna have to side with Rin on the side of "Actually, children are aware of the F-bomb." I'd even go so far as to say that if you pay attention and catch them using it in character, and have the NPCs react to that, it can impart a touch more self-control.

You may want to casually say "b&@~$" about someone who's got a rod up their butt, but when they're an Inquisitor of Iomedae with maxed out perception and melee skills, you'll watch your tongue, or The Inheritor is going to be very unhappy. :D

not only was i aware of the F Bomb in preschool, but i was aware of the perverse things the other children were referencing because the majority of them had parents with no filters. and neither my mute girlfriend or i have filters. we know children are aware of the existence of the F-bomb and all sorts of adult things, so if we do play with them, we have to have their parent sign a waver that it is not our fault if their child starts referencing adult things and develops both a sailors tongue as well as knowledge of what Doujins or Loligoth is. and i started my roleplay in the second grade, with some of these gamer parents that had no filters either,


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I've been in a game where dad was the gm and mom, two kids and two others (one of them being me) were the players. I gave it a try and left.
The problem was: Dad was GMing a game (not Pathfinder) in which we faced "grey" enemies while mom thought daughter to play her pc as lawful stupid black and white.

In more detail:
We had to fight something like an imp with regeneration and the little bugger offered to become my or the wizard's familiar in our heads. He would then stop attacking us. Turned out we could not defeat it and it was about to slaughter the party when I agreed to accept it as my familiar.
Later the, instigated by mom, the daughter and mom ambushed me and banished the imp, permanently crippling my pc because there it has permanent consequences when you lose your familiar.
The reasoning was: Is was evil it had to go. Sux to be you.

Better no playing than bad playing just because mom is being an A**hole to other players in order to teach the daughter black and white thinking.


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when we play at a table with Children who come over to try, we have the parents sign a waiver stating their irrevokable terminal agreement that if the child repeats any adult things at home, they understand our table is not responsible for any foul language or raunchy subjects their child repeats and that they personally agreed to let their child play at a table of autistic geniuses with no filters and all sorts of explicit content and let them know that we will not dumb down our campaign for a single child.

now, we will teach the child how to make a character if they can at least borrow the appropriate books from their parent and makes recommendations based on experience, and allow them to change characters like anyone else. but any responsibilities for the child's troubles in school are the subject of the parent who agreed to let the child play at the table under our supervision.

all we require is that the child is potty trained, that the child is provided their own food and snacks, or the money to get them independently, that the child have at least an attention span that will allow them to focus on the game, that the child at least knows how to read a full novel without asking questions at the age level of harry potter or percy jackson, add, subtract, multiply and divide, and that the child can take initiative to draw their own attention from others when they have something to say


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Auren "Rin" Cloudstrider wrote:
Bandw2 wrote:

I'm actually on the player's side, I would "threaten" to leave the group as well, but not out of anger or trying to cajole the GM/housemaster to not include their child, but as a warning of what simply would happen. I won't have fun playing with a child around, i'll feel more uncomfortable than having fun, and so would leave because the game would simply not offer what I played in the first place for, fun.

I have 2 12 year old sisters who are getting into pathfinder, and it is simply a different game, I can GM for such a game, but would not be a player in one.

the children won't evolve towards your preferred path without you to guide and influence their development by example. and it is often easier for a fellow player to leave an imprint on a child than it is for the dungeon master because the dungeon master spends too much time preparing,

if when i was in elementary school, if i hadn't roleplayed along older players, i wouldn't have learned half as much as i did. think of it like continuing the legacy of the hobby or continuing the bloodline, the grognards won't live much longer, so we need to develop fresh meat for the hobby.

Ah but not playing with an existing group of adults doesn't mean they don't get to play at all. That group only meets a few hours per week, the father and son can game in any of the free time they have. The young lad interested in rp can try online games or local games. Research can be done, arrangements made that don't damage the current group.


Umbranus wrote:

I've been in a game where dad was the gm and mom, two kids and two others (one of them being me) were the players. I gave it a try and left.

The problem was: Dad was GMing a game (not Pathfinder) in which we faced "grey" enemies while mom thought daughter to play her pc as lawful stupid black and white.

** spoiler omitted **

Better no playing than bad playing just because mom is being an A**hole to other players in order to teach the daughter black and white thinking.

"Now pay attention dear, the lesson is to grief the other players and grief them hard. If you give their character a permanent penalty, you get a sweet!"


DM Under The Bridge: I respectfully disagree with you. I believe if the player believes his son is mature enough to play in the game then he deserves the reason they do not wish to play with him be told to his face. The other players are behaving like petulant childish cowards and I believe that if the situation were forced on them to explain their actions to an actual child they would likely see how petty they are acting. I think that as a parent you need to set a good example to your child both as a parent and a gamer.

As an aside this is something that tends to work with all bigots, not just the players in the OP's game. I would recommend anyone try it the next time you are faced with bigotry. Get one of the subjects of their bigotry, put it in front of them and tell them they need to explain the reason for their distaste TO THAT PERSON. One of two things will happen: either they will not be able to do it and realize how petty their supposed beliefs about that person were (this is preferable) or they will out themselves as the bigot that they are. If it is the latter then you have to ask yourself if you really wanted to associate yourself with that kind of person in the first place.

I would tell you to believe me because I have tried it before several times. I might even be a little messed up for enjoying watching a bigot squirm or a person evolve before my eyes. But I have found that it really helps in my life. I don't have to walk around with a self-imposed blindfold on and pretend that I don't know of my friends' bigotry and it also allows me to keep open-minded, level headed, like-minded, non-bigitous friends. It really leads to a lot less chaos in my life just by getting over that first slightly turbulent hurdle. So rather than saying, "believe me, I've done it" I will instead say, "Try it for yourself, I think you will like the outcome. I did."


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Lune wrote:
I believe if the player believes his son is mature enough to play in the game then he deserves the reason they do not wish to play with him be told to his face.

To his face or his son's face? Because doing the latter might lead to kid's tears and by that a destroyed friendship between OP and player. Most parents are not mature enough to be able to face someone criticizing their children.


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I love my daughter. I can't wait until she's old enough to play.
That said, I also love a beer-fueled adult game, full of moral ambiguities, insanely convoluted plot lines, savage revenge, all kinds of NC-17 goings-on offstage, etc. And I would not really want her playing in such a game at age 12. I would not want to forcibly mix the two, or dilute the one, or whatever.

Instead, I would try like hell to have two separate games, one PG-13 and one R, if you will.

Explaining to the 12-year-old that there are two different games, one which he's allowed to play, and one that he's not, shouldn't be too different than explaining why he's not allowed to watch movies with "Emmaneulle" in the title. Yeah, it's slightly awkward, but doable.


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Auren "Rin" Cloudstrider wrote:
Bandw2 wrote:

I'm actually on the player's side, I would "threaten" to leave the group as well, but not out of anger or trying to cajole the GM/housemaster to not include their child, but as a warning of what simply would happen. I won't have fun playing with a child around, i'll feel more uncomfortable than having fun, and so would leave because the game would simply not offer what I played in the first place for, fun.

I have 2 12 year old sisters who are getting into pathfinder, and it is simply a different game, I can GM for such a game, but would not be a player in one.

the children won't evolve towards your preferred path without you to guide and influence their development by example. and it is often easier for a fellow player to leave an imprint on a child than it is for the dungeon master because the dungeon master spends too much time preparing,

if when i was in elementary school, if i hadn't roleplayed along older players, i wouldn't have learned half as much as i did. think of it like continuing the legacy of the hobby or continuing the bloodline, the grognards won't live much longer, so we need to develop fresh meat for the hobby.

1. I literally do not care as a player about another player growing.

2. I'm not worried about adult subjects getting imprinted on a child, I'm simply not comfortable around children in that trying to be an equal with one, is neigh impossible. Their mentally development or I suppose moral development isn't high enough for me to enjoyably be a party member.

3. this is literally, only about me as a player, and nothing to do with the child. nothing you can do to the child would change how I feel around children and their moral development at the time.


Umbranus wrote:

I've been in a game where dad was the gm and mom, two kids and two others (one of them being me) were the players. I gave it a try and left.

The problem was: Dad was GMing a game (not Pathfinder) in which we faced "grey" enemies while mom thought daughter to play her pc as lawful stupid black and white.

** spoiler omitted **

Better no playing than bad playing just because mom is being an A**hole to other players in order to teach the daughter black and white thinking.

To me this seems more a problem of having that particular mom as "black and white"/immature player and not of having children playing the game.


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If a 12 year old wants to spend time socializing with grown ups, that's a good thing to be encouraged. He might even need some hand-holding, just like you would with an apprentice in real life. Historically, 12 years old is when a "child" would go to work with a master to learn a profession. Work that into the story. If your friends are willing to quit a game that's about killing goblins because a kid wants to learn and without giving him a chance, they're not acting like adults.


T.A.U. wrote:


To me this seems more a problem of having that particular mom as "black and white"/immature player and not of having children playing the game.

Perhaps. But I'd be much more willing to play with children while their parents are not around. The only one influencing a player should be the GM. And the GM should treat every player as equal. And that's hard enough between couples. In most cases it will be worse between parent and child.

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