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5E How to convince better half

SirGrotius

Explorer
Hi all - for some of the old-school gamers here, do you have any tips for enticing your better half to the D&D side? I gamed back in the day and this quarantine has sprung the itch again, however, having a young family presents a few challenges as well as opportunities. My kids are intrigued, being 7 and 9 and full of wonder, but my wife is at that time in life when she's always busy, and likes to veg out with netflix or a good Stephen King book, etc. Any tips for bringing her over to the gaming side? I don't think she has a good conception of what D&D is besides being on the nerdy side of the spectrum and involving dice, although she had a penchant for fantasy and horror during her studies, so I know she can appreciate good lore. ;)

Thanks!
 

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Scott Christian

Adventurer
Might try starting with board games. Then switch to one of the D&D board games. Then ask if she is interested.

That said, it is always neat to see two siblings play as a team and winning without the parents' "help." It can go a long way to build bonds without us adults messing it up. (Of course, this means you as DM might have to act like the pretend bad guy that they need to win against.)
 


jasper

Rotten DM
Dude, just send me your gaming stuff for just thinking about doing this. I promise I shipped back to after the divorce is final. Raise your hand people if you think this is a bad idea.
Raises hand.
 



Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
I'm one of the lucky few who has a wife that enjoys playing just as much as I do. In fact, we started gaming together before we started dating so I'm not sure there's much advice I can give.

On the other hand my sister just joined a game because we started up a game with her kids. Admittedly her kids are about to have kids of their own, but she sees it as a way of connecting with them in ways that she otherwise would not.

So I wouldn't push it, but let her know that she's always welcome to come play with you and the kids. Gently remind her that before she knows it the kids will be going off to lives of their own before she knows it and that this is a way to play with them and bond in a way she wouldn't normally.

But remember. You can lead a horse to water but if you throw it in, it just gets wet. Or something. I always get that one confused. ;) Point is, this may just be a chance for you and the kids to have something special together and your wife may never be interested. That's not a bad thing, after all your kids will be going off to live lives of their own before you know it.
 

Retreater

Legend
My wife was playing D&D regularly before we met. She doesn't play in every game I play (I still have game nights with "the guys," for example).
What I would suggest is how you might encourage any other friend to play. Make the offer, then play without her. Pressuring her would not be the right way. Let her see you and the kids enjoying it. She might come around. It's harder to dismiss something when you see the entire family enjoying an activity together.
 

Ringtail

World Traveller
I don't think you can convince someone to play D&D if they don't want to. Better not force it.

If you just play with the Kids, I imagine she'll come to watch for a little bit. That might catch her interest, or if the kids like it their excitement might convince her. But in my experience, badgering someone - no matter who it is - does the opposite of making someone want to play.
 

It will only work if she fits in with the group of friends. If she does and she enjoys hanging out with the group outside of the game, then it should be easy enough to let her join a session - perhaps at first as a guest.
 



Dausuul

Legend
I'd say, just play D&D with your kids. One of two things will happen:
  • Your wife will be curious, sit in on a game or two, and get involved of her own accord.
  • Your wife will seize the opportunity to have a few hours to herself, and you'll get a bunch of Dad Points and Husband Points*.
Either way, it works out well for all concerned.

*Or Mom Points and Wife Points, depending on your own gender.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Hi all - for some of the old-school gamers here, do you have any tips for enticing your better half to the D&D side?

Broadly - provide opportunity, keep the barriers to entry low. Allow her to engage and make up her own mind about whether she likes it.

I gamed back in the day and this quarantine has sprung the itch again, however, having a young family presents a few challenges as well as opportunities. My kids are intrigued, being 7 and 9 and full of wonder

Well, there are games geared to kids. If you really want to go with D&D... have you looked at the Humblewood setting? There seem to be a lot of themes in there appropriate for kids. Then, it becomes a family thing for her to engage in, but that she doesn't have to manage, which may be a selling point.
 

ccooke

Adventurer
Play games. Make sure she knows she's welcome to join, but doesn't have to.
Don't make it an obligation in any form, just something she could choose to do.

Most importantly, if she's never interested - accept it.
 

I don't have a partner, so I can't speak from experience, but my suggestion: show how awesome being a nerd is lol. Maybe show them some Critical Role, talk to them about roleplaying, talk about the setting(s) of D&D.
 

It really depends on how long you've been together. Since you have kids that are interested in playing, you've probably been together for quite some time. If she hasn't shown interest in all these years, she's probably not going to be interested now. She might be interested once she sees the kids playing (and probably talking about it afterwards), but let her come to you. Otherwise she's probably not going to give it a fair chance.

I do have a bit of advice if she does join, and probably with your kids too. State up front that the dice are neutral and the final arbiter of events when rolls happen. I've seen quite a few relationships go bad because someone was either pampered or felt picked on. If a character might die or suffer some really bad consequences, she/they need to know it's the dice, not you. Especially if it's the result of their bad decisions!
 

aco175

Legend
I had my wife watch Monty Python and the Holy Grail, and that killed any chance. My son got all into it and my daughter came over to watch some a few months ago, but never wanted to join.

If my family was a baseball team, I would batting 330, but as of now, we are just almost a Meatloaf song.
 

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