Students bring “abstract” Dungeons and Dragons game to life



A Dungeons and Dragons die lies in the middle of a page of a guidebook.

Gayle Robertson and John Osborne

The abstract game Dungeons and Dragons came to life in a classroom. 

Students tapped their feet as they rolled dice that would determine their lives and how they would end in the game. 

The game is highly complex, requiring several different types of dice, a map, a character chart, a computer program, and a dungeon master whose role is similar to a dealer in poker. Some dedicated groups of hardcore players can keep the same game or, as it’s called by players, a campaign going for several years by updating the storyline and scenarios.

However, Dungeons and Dragons is more than a game for French teacher Dr. Mark Humphries; it is a passion that inspired him to start an Interim Term class, which he co-taught with film teacher Mr. Ryan Gillentine.

“I honestly just love the game. It’s a lot of work, but the game makes up for it,” he said.

The students started their first game during the first week. Mr. Humphries and Mr. Gillentine attempted to heighten students’ stress by adding suspenseful music and placing their minds into the fictional world they had created the day before. 

The game would go on for another 14 days in class, but that won’t be the end of the everlasting world, for it had now influenced at least one student to continue the game on his own time. 

“The world I had been introduced to this Interim Term is the most complex, exciting, and interesting thing I’ve been a part of,” stated JP Reckling, a student of the Dungeons and Dragons class. It was not until Dr. Humphries’ and Mr. Gillentine’s interim class that Reckling got to start his journey in Dungeons and Dragons.

Reckling’s life was left on the line after a long wooden spear penetrated his character. 

As students played the game sitting in chairs in a classroom, they still shouted and drummed their hands on the table while facing many challenges and attempting to solve them by the roll of a die.