Family roleplay games

Family roleplay games DEFAULT


Step 1:  Contact Librarian

To join our Family Friendly Role-Playing group please contact Brad Dobos at [email protected] 

Step 2:  Build Your Character

After contacting the librarian you will be guided through the process of building your character.  The current Role-Playing Game (RPG) adventure is fantasy based, like Lord of the Rings, Narnia, or Harry Potter, but if enough people want to do something different we can change it to any setting. 

Typical character types include; warriors, rogues, wizards, and healers, but you can be anything you can imagine. 

Step 3:  Join the Game

Once you have a character made you will be given the WebEx link to join our online sessions.  After that simply show up and enjoy the game with your peers. 

Nice to Haves...

Though they are not required the following can help make a role-playing game go more smoothly.  Pen, or pencil, and paper for notes.  A set of RPG dice, 1d20, 1d12, 2d10, 1d8, 3d6, 1d4. 


15 Unique Board Games and RPGs for Families That Aren't Monopoly or Trivial Pursuit

Clockwise from left: Dungeons and Dragons vs. Rick and Morty, Bubblegumshoe, Stuffed Fables, and Dungeon Mayhem.

Families are experiencing some of the hardest changes with social distancing. Kids are home from school and parents have had to transition to a new way of learning for the first time. There’s also the issue of keeping kids entertained while they’re stuck inside for hours. We’ve made a list of family-friendly games, sorted by age group, to make the downtime a little easier.

This is the third piece in a series where I’m highlighting board games and tabletop roleplaying games for folks to try out at home. We started with single-player-friendly games (sometimes referred to as solo or “solitaire play” games), then two-player games, and now family-friendly games. We’re also keeping the door open for more articles in the future, including one for board games and RPGs for folks who’ve been separated by social distancing, and we welcome suggestions for things you’re looking for.

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I’m including a mix of physical games and digital versions—Steam versions of existing games, or PDFs of various RPGs—for folks wanting options that don’t involve home delivery. I’m also highlighting game developers’ websites for purchasing over big box stores and Amazon, unless that option isn’t available, but make sure to communicate with potential sellers about their delivery situations. Amazon has also been facing serious delays because of high demand, so that’s something to consider when making purchasing decisions.

Young Kids (3-6)

A look at how to play Animal Upon Animal.

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Animal Upon Animal

Animal Upon Animal from HABA is an entertaining stacking game where kids (and adults) try to create large structures out of wooden animal pieces. Think of it like Jenga in reverse, only with more unique challenges and problem-solving skills. There’s also a version for even younger kids called Animal Upon Animal: Small and Yet Great!, which features larger animal pieces. Animal Upon Animal costs $25 and is available on HABA’s website.

Rhino Hero

Also from HABA, Rhino Hero is a variant on the “house of cards” game, where players try to build a tower by placing cards in different patterns—all while the pesky rhinoceros thief is trying to scale the building. The gamesays it’s for kids ages five and up but I’ve played it with my four-year-old nephew just fine. Rhino Hero costs $15 and is available on HABA’s website.

A look at the setup for Count Your Chickens.

Count Your Chickens

Tired of Candyland? Count Your Chickens follows a similar structure—only instead of taking a leisurely trip through a candy forest, kids are working together to bring a hen’s baby chicks back to the coop. It’s a great collaborative game that helps with cooperative and counting skills. Count Your Chickens costs $16 and is available at several stores like Target and Walmart.

Some of the art for No Thank You, Evil!

No Thank You, Evil!

No Thank You, Evil! is a tabletop roleplaying game designed with younger kids in mind, helping them learn the initial rules of RPGs through the already-familiar concept of make believe. Players create their own kid characters based on a couple of fun, inspiring traits (like a robot who only eats candy canes) and they work together to explore the lands of Storia: The Land Next Door. There are a number of tools available online—including as PDFs—to help parents set up their own games, including character sheets, scenarios, and adventure packs. No Thank You, Evil! is available as a PDF for $10 on MonteCook’s website.

Kids Dungeon Adventures

If No Thank You, Evil! sounds a little daunting for your four-year-old, there’s Kids Dungeon Adventure. It’s a simple two-step roleplaying game where kids use their blocks, Legos, or other at-home toys to build a dungeon, then create a story to go along with it. Creator Ben Garvey has made a rulebook for the game that includes storyline suggestions, treasure ideas, monster cards, battles, and tips for introducing kids to roleplaying games. Kids Dungeon Adventure costs $6 and is available on Garvey’s website.

Older kids (7-12)

The different characters you can play as in Dungeon Mayhem.

Dungeon Mayhem

Wanting to get your kids familiar with Dungeons & Dragons? Dungeon Mayhem is a great way to get the ball rolling. It’s a two-to-four player card game where players do battle using a variety of spells, abilities, and weapons. Each character in the game is based on a different D&D class—paladin, wizard, barbarian, and rogue—so it’s great to try different combinations and see what comes of it. I’ve played this with kids as young as six and they’ve gotten the hang of it pretty easily, though you may want to start off by pairing them up with an adult player to explain the rules. Dungeon Mayhem costs $15 and information on availability is on Wizards of the Coast’s website.

A look at what’s included in the Disney Villainous game.

Disney Villainous

Of course I was going to recommendDisney Villainous. This one has been on regular rotation in my household over the past two weeks. In this game, each player takes on the role of a different Disney villain, and everyone works to accomplish their own individual goal...while sabotaging everyone else’s. It’s good for up to five players, and the series of expansions guarantee even more variety of gameplay and challenges. Disney Villainous costs $45 and is available on Ravensburger’s website.

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A look at the gameplay for Stuffed Fables.

Stuffed Fables

Stuffed Fables from Plaid Hat Games is a fantastic way to get kids familiar with RPG campaigns. Players take on the role of stuffed animals trying to save their child from a series of terrifying nightmares. What makes this game special is that it’s a roleplaying game you don’t really have to plan. Instead, it plays like a Choose Your Own Adventure book, with each page telling a new part of the story—and featuring a new map for the latest encounter or adventure. Stuffed Fables costs $70 and is available at Target and Barnes and Noble.

Part of the cover art for Hero Kids.

Hero Kids

Hero Kids is a tabletop roleplaying game that was designed for kids and adults to play together. It’s set in a fantasy world, and players take on the role of noble (underage) heroes trying to save their friends and the world. What’s great about this pen-and-paper game is you only need traditional six-sided dice that you’ll find in any old Yahtzee box, meaning it’s accessible for adults who are new to the genre as well as kids. It also says it works for kids as young as four, with gameplay options to keep kids engaged even when it’s not their turn. Hero Kids is available as a PDF for $6 on DriveThruRPG.


For kids who’ve outgrown the most introductory RPGs but aren’t quite ready for Dungeons & Dragons yet, there’s a cool intermediary game that uses more complex rules in a setting they’re most likely familiar with. Broomstix, a free roleplaying game from Jared A. Sorensen, takes place in the world of the Harry Potter series. Players are students at Hogwarts—ideally part of the same House, although they can be from different Houses (except Slytherin). They take classes, compete in Quidditch tournaments, and perform other tasks the average Hogwarts student would complete. It’s a fun way to show kids who’ve read Harry Potter how to understand complex RPG rules, because they’ll already understand a bulk of the material. Broomstix is available as a free download, but it doesn’t come with a campaign.

Teens (13+)

A look at what’s included in Betrayal Legacy.

Betrayal Legacy

A Legacy game is a smart investment for social distancing, because it’s an ongoing story that the family can look forward to every month. Obviously we’re avoiding Pandemic Legacy for, well, forever, so instead I’m recommending Avalon Hill’s Betrayal Legacy—which I’m currently playing with a couple of friends (or, rather, I was). Set in the world of Betrayal at House on the Hill, Betrayal Legacy is a 13-episode game that unfolds slowly with each session—adding new characters, locations, and challenges. By the end of the game you’ll have a unique copy of Betrayal that can be played on its own. Betrayal Legacy costs $75 and is available at Barnes and Noble; it’s also on sale at Walmart for $55.


Wingspan is technically for kids 10 and older, but I’m putting it in the teen section with the caveat that some younger kids might be down for it too. This is a beautiful and calming strategy resource game where players are building natural habitats to attract certain birds. It’s a great game and an even greater educational tool—plus it’s a way to get your kids chatting about nature during times they can’t really go outside. Wingspan costs $60 and is available on Stonemaier Games’ website.

The box cover art for Joking Hazard.

Joking Hazard

From the folks behind Cyanide & Happiness, Joking Hazard is a Cards Against Humanity-style game that replaces phrases with memes and comic strips. One player puts down two panels and it’s up to everyone else to come up with the final piece of the comic strip. Keep in mind, there are several panels in the set that are really adult, so it might be a good idea to go through and pull out the worst ones before playing. I’m not saying you have to; your teens are almost grown-ups, they’ve seen porn, they’re trapped in your home, and the world sucks. Maybe they can have a little raunchy humor, as a treat. Joking Hazard costs $25 and is available on Cyanide & Happiness’website.

Part of the cover art for Bubblegumshoe.


Evil Hat Productions’ Bubblegumshow is a tabletop roleplaying game where players are teenage detectives solving mysteries in a small town. You can make it like a Nancy Drew story, Stranger Things, or something even weirder. Using the Gumshoe system, this is a game that can be played with two or more people, giving it a lot of variety. This one is for kids 13 and older, so it’s a perfect way for pre-teens to learn the rules of more complex roleplaying games and get them familiar with the collaborative storytelling experience. Bubblegumshoe is available as a PDF for $8 on DriveThruRPG.

Some of the artwork for Dungeons and Dragons vs. Rick and Morty.

Dungeons and Dragons vs. Rick and Morty

It’s time: You’re finally ready to introduce your kids to Dungeons & Dragons. But how do you get them familiar with the rules and keep them entertained? A great solution is a starter kit that takes Dungeons & Dragons and adds the quirkiness of Rick and Morty to spice things up. Taking place in an old-school dungeon (and inspired by the graphic novel series of the same name), players can use one of several pre-made characters to explore and find all the references that non-fans will not understand.

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Dungeons and Dragons vs. Rick and Morty is a funny game with lots of tongue-in-cheek jokes and nods to the series, but it’s also a surprisingly effective learning tool for Dungeons & Dragons. Plus, the starter set comes with everything you need to start a campaign. Dungeons & Dragons vs. Rick and Morty costs $30 and is available on Fantasy Grounds. There’s also a digital version on Steam for the same price.

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10 Tabletop RPG Games To Play With Friends And Family, Ranked

Tabletop games are having a moment. That's perfectly fine by us because we love a good reason to sit around the table and forget about the crazy world for a while. Role-playing games especially have experienced a boom, and everybody wants to be somebody else as they grapple with the interesting stories of new characters. There are a lot of options out there for you, but some choices are highly-regarded features in the genre. To guide you on your quest to find the best tabletop RPG, we've compiled a list of the greatest hits. Tell us what you think of these ten favorites.

RELATED: The 10 PS1 JRPGs With The Best Storylines, Ranked

10 Mice And Mystics

Four different classes provide the chance to customize your party when playing Mice and Mystics! And don't underestimate the power of mice. You may be little creatures, but there is a kingdom in danger and you need to stand as heroes! A base game exists, along with several expansions, which allows players to follow the story of their rugged squad through many stories. The tabletop adventure is more complex than entry-level board games, but it's quite simple compared to other robust titles in the genre.

9 Arkham Horror

If you want a feel for the Lovecraftian world, then Arkham Horror would be a perfect fit for you and your gaming friends. The Fantasy Flight game is exceptionally tough, and it will take multiple tries to make it through some parts of the campaign, but the adventure allows you to follow several investigators as they explore the horror in the world around them. Be careful or you might lose your sanity! If you manage to stay sane, you could still be killed by any of the terrible creatures that threaten the physical plane of existence.

8 Rising Sun

Feudal Japan is the setting for so many fabulous stories, and this period is the backdrop for one of our top RPGs that you can buy right now. Rising Sun is the next game from the minds that brought us Blood Rage, and the elegant game structure present in that Viking fantasy has been refined and improved for the newest title. The historical setting forces you to consider more than conflict as a path to victory. Forge alliances with other players and negotiate your way into an advantageous position. Anything can be an asset while you lay plans for supremacy among friends.

7 War Of The Ring

Lord of the Rings is one of the most successful fantasy series in the world, so it's no surprise that a board game following the original story is one of the best RPG experiences around. The game is best played with two players. One will command the armies of Mordor and those under the control of Sauron. The other player will command the Free Peoples, and the fate of Middle Earth plays out on the board. It's similar to Star Wars: Rebellion in style. An excellent game all around guaranteed to frustrate and to excite.

6 One Night: Ultimate Werewolf

This game will be nothing like the others listed, but we did that on purpose. Sometimes you need a lighter game that will break up the long hours spent on other RPGs. You might also want something that you can bring out at parties for people that don't play as many board games. It's very accessible, and it's a lot of fun. One Night: Ultimate Werewolf is a game of inaccurate communication. You start as a villager or a werewolf, and you have to decipher whether or not you're still on the same side when the morning comes. If you like it, there are also tons of different versions that you can mix and match.

5 Monster Of The Week

One of the few choices we've added that isn't a board game. Monster of the Week is closer to Dungeons & Dragons in style. Oh my God, it's so fun. If you're a fan of Supernatural or Buffy the Vampire Slayer, then this is a game you'll want to try. One member of your group will lead the sessions as a friendly collaborator who unveils the story piece by piece. But they're mainly reacting to the whims of the group, who are badass monster-hunters. You can live out your monster-slaying fantasies here. Be warned, though. You might not be able to stop once you start.

4 Descent: Journeys In The Dark

A longstanding feature in the tabletop RPG scene. Descent is pretty much a Dungeons and Dragons campaign in a box. It features dungeons that you explore with your party, awesome plastic miniatures that detail your group and the enemies that you'll face, as well as a linear story that you can follow session by session. If you're intimidated by the more abstract form of play that comprises D&D, then start with a game like Descent. It will get your foot in the door, and you'll be able to build an unforgettable story.

3 Star Wars: Imperial Assault

Imagine if you were playing Descent and then asked yourself, "What if I could do this in the Star Wars universe?" Guess what?! Fantasy Flight Games heard your plea, and they responded with Imperial Assault. The Star Wars experience is brought to your table with so much content through which you can play.

RELATED: Ranked: 10 Worst Games In Beloved Franchises (According To Metacritic)

Expansions galore. Miniatures for days. If you've been waiting to get your fix, then Imperial Assault might be able to meet your demand. Fantasy Flight creates some of the best games on the market. This particular one is a gem.

2 Gloomhaven

This beastly game is at the top of a lot of lists. The box weighs enough to get in a good workout just lifting it off your shelf. The miniatures are top quality for board games. The campaign is over 100 hours. You can play this and not look back for a long time. Your game group could subsist off this behemoth for a couple of years. More important than all of that, however, is the gameplay. And it plays well, folks. There's a reason that Gloomhaven is the talk of the town. It's a fun game.

1 Dungeons & Dragons

Come on. This couldn't not be at the top of our list. Dungeons & Dragons has experienced a resurgence in recent years. Tabletop role-playing is big right now, and the classic can't be beaten. It may sound weird, but gathering together with food and drinks before embarking on mad quests is a wonderful time. Make sure you've got the right friends. Make sure you've got a Dungeon Master that knows what he's doing. And then leave behind the real world. Travel in a fantasy land with a drink in one hand and a broadsword in the other.

NEXT: 10 Dungeons & Dragons Rules That Dungeon Masters Should Pretend Don’t Exist


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About The Author
Devon Norris (35 Articles Published)

Devon Norris lives in Texas with his wife and daughter. He's been reading and writing since a young age. Games, movies, and books take up a lot of his days that are spent with family and friends. Occasionally, he tries to get work done. He's a writer for Valnet Inc. covering TheGamer.

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