19 October 2019

Role-playing games and self-discovery

I thought that I would mention a couple of recent first-person essays on role-playing games in the popular press. Both essays reflect on how playing RPGs helped the authors learn about themselves and develop in important ways.

Recently in Vox: “The best $1.16 I ever spent: a set of loaded Dungeons & Dragons dice” by Jessica Xing.

And in the Washington Post: “How my role-playing game character showed me I could be a woman” by Joan Moriarity.

I found both essays rather interesting. They were written from perspectives radically different from my own. Nonetheless, I can relate to the power of role-playing games in self-discovery and self-development. I know that I would’ve been a very different person—less imaginative, far more shy—had I not opened up the blue ‘Holmes’ Basic Set of Dungeons and Dragons (the one with chits!) many decades ago…


  1. I agree, they were both interesting and radically different than my own experiences.

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    1. Chris, I was going to say something about being more fond of ducks in this alternative timeline, but it seems that you've deleted the post...


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I'm a Canadian political philosopher who divides his time between Milwaukee and Toronto.