Starsworn, Chapter 1 - a game to onboard parents and kids

Starsworn Chapter 1 Title Page AC

I’m very interested, as an educator, designer, and parent, in how to help people who haven’t played story games learn how - especially how to play them with kids. The benefits in terms of creativity, writing and speaking, socio-emotional skills, and just plain old JOY are incredible, and I think the hobby has immense potential for education in the same way it’s beginning to be explored for the purpose of therapy.

StoriesRPG is based on the game I’ve been playtesting with kids for the last two years. Starsworn is a print and play version of the game, designed to walk kids and parents through learning the system as they go. As an “ambassador” - a proxy for the person who brings others to the table, which is how so many learn to play - I’ve designed the game in a familiar format for families, as a combination of a coloring, choose-your-own-adventure, activity book.

Another ambassador is the Actual Play that my collaborator, the incredible Daniel Hinds of, has run with the voice actors for his Max Goodname series. I listened to these stories with my son as he was growing up, and they got us through some tough nights when he was sick. Hearing him and his actors play the game and teach it through story has been amazing, and we’ll be continuing to release new Chapters for the Starsworn story arc each month, accompanied by APs in which the Max Goodname characters will adventure in parallel. We’re planning some crossovers as well - I’m super excited that the show will help kids really feel the world of the story is real as they hear the actors talking about things their characters have done in their games at home!

If you have kids, educate, or are just interested in some creative story-telling play from a design perspective, I’d love your thoughts. I know others out there are playing and designing for kids (hi, @DreamingDragonslayer !), and I’d love to talk more about ways to help new players enjoy the hobby here!


Really cool stuff, Michael. I always think about how new people are learning about these games, and I try to help when I can. My groups have been all adults lately though. It reminds me I should invite my friend, Irene, who runs FATE games for kids (about once a month, middle school age I think).
You are on the front lines!

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