I often read with jealousy the various wargaming blogs and forum threads that show proud dads introducing their offspring into the world of tabletop gaming. From a tender age these kids, usually sons, pick up some simple, often homebrewed rules, some eye-catching miniatures and away they go.
At the time of writing my eldest is 4, and is possibly the fluffiest girly girl you’re ever likely to meet. If it isn’t pink and doesn’t have fairy wings then she isn’t interested. Couple this with the fact that she has picked up on her mum’s distain of the hobby, and you can be pretty sure that she isn’t going to be rolling a D10 for morale any time soon.
Or so I thought…
Having chucked my minis willy-nilly into their boxes after the last VBCW game, I was putting them into some kind of order in the living room when the fluffy female one offered to help out. I didn’t think she would understand ‘okay, please sort the pseudo-fascists from the socialists’ and so instead tasked her with grouping together all my Twiggy Mommet protestors – ‘the ones with the scary masks’.
Amazingly she set to work without a twitter of protest (the same cannot be said when asking her to tidy her room) and asked (joy of joys) ‘Daddy, how do you wargame?’
Long story short, next thing I know she’s lining up her Disney princess dolls and we’re ‘wargaming’ on the carpet. Her rules consisted of rolling a large novelty D6 and moving each princess (mine wore a fetching orange ball gown) forwards that number of paces. The various toys strewn across the room became hazards, the worst being a wooden hippo that would ‘poo on your dress’ if you landed on it.
Her princess (Snow White I believe) quickly outpaced mine (not surprising considering the number of 6s she rolls during Junior Monopoly) and reached the toybox (our intended goal it transpired) way ahead of my orange Cinderella.
So there’s hope yet! You never know, she might start going along to a few games to fight alongside her old dad - especially if she keeps on rolling those 6s!