045 – Designing RPGs with and for Kids with Kevin Ferrone the Designer of Starport

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Hello fellow adventurers and welcome to the Nerdlab – Where we transform our gaming passion into incredible game designs and learn how to nerd like a boss. 

My name is Marvin and I am an ambitious game designer on my quest to develop a co-operative fantasy card game.

For this podcast, my vision is to take you with me on this exciting journey. Together we will explore the secrets of different game mechanics and reach the next level as a game designer.

 

Today I want to focus on a topic that is very important to me. At the moment my kids ask me every night before they go to bed if I can tell them a story. In the past, each kid chose a book and we read those books together. But since some days it is more and more important to them that I come up with the stories myself. Mostly because they want to influence the flow of the story. This can mean the ghost of my story has to be friendly and help the protagonists instead of playing a trick on them. That means I have to come up with new ideas and stories on the fly of how the story could progress. When I thought about that situation a bit more I realized that what my kids actually want to do is playing an RPG. And that is exactly the topic I want to discuss today. Designing and playing RPGs for and with kids. 

Since my kids are still a bit young and I am just at the beginning of the journey of playing RPGs with them I am very glad to have a guest for today’s show. He has a lot more experience in both, playing and designing RPGs for kids. He is the not only the owner of the very cool domain RPGforKids.com, but he is also the designer of Starport a fun, educational and non-violent tabletop RPG for Kids.  And of course he is also a father. But there is one thing he is not. He is not the art director of his game Starport. Because that job was taken over by his 8 year old boys. I am super excited to hear how this came to be and learn more about the design process of Starport. 

Topics we covered during the interview:

  • How to design games for kids?
  • How to include kids into the game design process?
  • What components and rules should be used in RPG for kids?
  • What are the rules of Starport?

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