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VelveteenRabbit

Age Requirements

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I'm hoping to run some demo games here in the near future. But it occurs to me that the majority of people in and out of the local game shop are under 13 (due to the proprietor's interest in all things Pokemon).

 

I'm hoping that people who have run open games have had some experience with this... What do you feel is a good age requirement? I'm 30 myself, but I also played my first game of D&D at 6... I don't like to exclude anyone from the hobbies I love, but at the same time I don't want immature kids damaging models and terrain or detracting from other people's enjoyment.

 

Does there seem to be a reasonable age cut-off where kids just don't get it/contribute anything that anyone's noticed? Or does it really depend on the kid?

 

Opinions?

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Generally if the kid is more interested in knocking the minis together and making sword noises, he's too young. I've frequently demoed to pre-teens, and it really depends on the kid. There were 14 year-olds who I didn't want near my minis, and 8 year-olds who picked it up and played wonderfully.

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Its very much a play it by ear deal. For the local kids club (the fanatics) we have taught kids as young as 8. A lot of it depends on the exposure to games that the child has had. If this is their first time and, as Frosch says, they are making sword noises then they are not ready. Both my boys were playing 40K by the time they were 8, no problems, but then they had grown up with games.

 

Heck by the time he was 8 my oldest son had probably been to more conventions than the average gamer (and if you think you have been to a lot of conventions, my oldest is 15 now and has not missed either of the local conventions yet so that would be 29 local shows plus a couple of years when he went to Origins, Gencon and DragonCon with us. Yes he attended his first convention when he was 4 months old).

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Heisler, want to adopt me? I'm a good kid really, I just want to go to a convention.

 

I agree with the others to just play it by feel. I played a mechwarrior game with an under 13 kid who was not only fun to play against, but kicked my but in the process.

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Heisler, want to adopt me? I'm a good kid really, I just want to go to a convention.

 

I agree with the others to just play it by feel. I played a mechwarrior game with an under 13 kid who was not only fun to play against, but kicked my but in the process.

It can be a rough life when your parents help run the local conventions and then run major tournaments, and do a little auctioneering on the side, at the big shows. We used to organize the Puffing Billy Railroad Tournaments at Gencon and Origins. Thankfully that is in other hands now.

 

But, seriously, kids are more than capable of handling the rules for Warlord. They will pick it quick and are more likely to ask you questions when they don't understand something. They can really surprise you with those questions too, keep the rulebook close by, you will need it.

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Steve and I have done alot of Warlord demos at Hobbytown USA, so the kids there generally tend to be accompanied by a parent or two, but as far as the rules go, the kids seem to pick up on it pretty quickly and enjoy the fast-and-furiousness of the game. Quick play for the shorter attention span and smaller armies for the tight budget seem to be a real selling point to parents whose kids we've demod to.

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In my experience, kids can be the best fan base ever (but not always - one of the kids that plays at my FLGS is an annoying pain in the arse). Back in my hometown a few Mage Knight kids saw my roomie and I playing Chronopia and started buying minis. A few of the older ones felt Chronopia was more "grown up" than Mage Knight. Their friends started playing, and their friend's friend's started playing. Soon we had 20 people in the area playing monthly tournaments. It was AWESOME!

 

I have a couple of kids I DnD with interested in playing, so I'll try my best to hook 'em in too. Overall I don't mind playing with kids once you establish ground rules. Don't touch the other guy's minis without his permission. Don't be a sore loser, but more importantly, don't be a sore winner.

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::D: That's the beauty of the Warlord (RAGE) system , it's easy to learn and the kids seem to pick it up quickly . The added bonus of only needing a small army is another incentive . Most 10 to 15 year olds I've had at demos seem genuinely interested in games , and therfore are no problem . If the kid is not interested he/she will just walk away , so from my experience there's no age limit . ::D:

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I've demoed Warlord to kids as young as six, one of whom sat and did paint-n-take with us for a couple of hours. Most of the kids have been VERY bright and attentive, and have been absolutely NO trouble. Many have left the store with mom or dad buying several minis for them...

 

One of the main reasons I choose to paint fast, not at a "higher level", is that ALL of my figures are "toy soldiers", not art objects. If I paint it, it is going on the table for anyone who wishes to use it. I've amazingly NEVER had a child drop or break a figure at a demo. My only heartbreaker was dropping Blorg Mudstump, myself, while running a game. He is currently being repaired and repainted.

 

I did have to ban one adult player from my "at home' game club, for continually mistreating figures, none of which he owned or had painted......

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I have no problems demo-ing to children as long as the other players are okay with them.

If I spot an adult player giving me 'the look', I ask if the kids will sit this game out so they can help me test-run the next game that has really cool models in it, etc.

If they're young enough to be distracting, chances are they'll jump at the chance to bang around my undeads in a game that covers the very basics.

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The only people I've had problems with are kids in their early teens. Old enough to know better, but too ill-disciplined to listen.

 

I can let my two-year old handle figures and he knows how to treat them gently, and most kids know that they'd feel bad if someon broke one of their "toys", so they handle other peoples' things with respect.

 

As for adults, well, it seems that for some "growing up" meant they didn't have to follow any of the rules of polite society anymore.

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I'll agree with everyone that says it's hit and miss. I consider 90% of the models I have for Warlord to be demo mini's so I expect them to get beat up. I have picked an army that will be mine and do not plan on fielding it for demos. Now all I need to do is understand that the mini's don't need an incredible paint job for demos.

The Black Lightening team from Origins will remember Colin. He was this 6 or 7 year old that must have played 6 or 7 times over 3 days. The Reaper area was one of the only places that would let him play with the mini's. He was easily distracted but if you called his name and told him to roll some dice or move his minis, he was right on it. He treated the minis pretty well and even picked up a few of the rules.

It really does depend on the kid.

Matt

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