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RPG-99-01 - Overview Presentation (2 hours)

by Hawke Robinson published Jun 13, 2016 08:30 PM, last modified Dec 18, 2016 03:26 PM
This 2 hour program provides high-level overview of all RPG formats, their effects upon participants, and the potential uses to achieve educational and/or therapeutic goals. Suitable for laypersons and professionals.

Course ID: RPG-99-01

Focus: All (Layperson, Educator, Healthcare).

Total Training Hours: 2

Formats Included: All 4 (TRPG, LARP, CRPG, SRPG)

Total Rate (local): $300

Rate (teleconference): $200

Rate (on-site distant): Negotiable / RPG Trailer

Post-training test: None

Training Certification Received: None

Interaction Type: General audience minimal/light interaction

Number of Trainees: 1+ (no upper limit).


Program Summary

A presentation on the pre-history leading up to the creation of role-playing games in 1974, the evolution of all 4 RPG formats (tabletop, live-action, computer-based, and solo), the socio-cultural issues associated with RPGs, the existing correlative, meta-analysis, and causal research on role-playing games, market information on the RPG industry and participants, examples of programs using RPGs to achieve educational and therapeutic goals for participants in various programs, and overview of professional standards and training available in the RPG industry, how people can begin to engage in RPGs for themselves or for others, and looking ahead to the potential future of RPGs. 

Program Outline


Background Information

  • Speaker Background

  • RPG Research Background

  • Overview of all 4 RPG formats


History of RPGs

  • History leading up to creation of RPG (before 1872, and 1872 to 1974)

    • Before 1974 - Precursors to RPG

    • RPG in the 70s. - Wargaming into Tabletop RPG

    • RPG in the 80s - “Golden Years” of TRPG, and growth of LARP and CRPG

    • RPG in the 90s – Declines of TRPG, Further Diversification and hybridization of RPG forms.
    • RPG in the 2000s – Revival of TRPG, booming CRPG, LARP
    • RPGs in North America, Europe, South America, & Israel.


Myths About, and Attacks against, RPG and gamers

  • Suicide

  • Homicide

  • Violence

  • Criminality

  • Meaninglessness

  • Alienation

  • Occult

  • Anti-social

  • Dorks, nerds, geeks, losers

  • Only male gamers

  • The Moral/Satanic Panic of the 1980s

  • The related research to these inculcated myths

  • Ongoing inculcation related to “Gamer Floater” Hypothesis

  • Further dispelling the myths: Famous gamers expected and unexpected


Research on RPGs

  • The research discovering potential educational and therapeutic benefits of RPG

  • Heidegger's theories of at-handedness of world-learning

  • Exploring as the foundation of, and enhancing effectiveness of learning

  • Role-playing game markets and economics

  • Diversity of RPGs by genre and systems

  • RPG as Assessment

  • Shared Narrative Phenomenon

  • Research on gender bias in the gaming industry and community

  • Key aspects of RPG:

    • Structured rules systems

    • TRPG & CRPG able to exceed player actual abilities

    • Measurable

    • Evolve & developing

  • Avedon Interaction Patterns, especially Intragroup

  • The Bartle Test of RPG player types

  • Csikszentmihalyi's Flow experiences related to RPGs


More Details on each of the 4 RPG Formats

  • CYOA & Solo modules

  • Tabletop

  • Computer-based, solo and multiplayer types

    • Solo

    • Multiplayer

    • Massive Multiplayer

    • Real-time vs. Turn-based

    • Screen time research recommendations

  • Live-action role-playing (LARP)

    • Combat-oriented: boffer, heavy combat
    • Non-combat oriented
    • Costumed and non-costumed/props
  • Pros, Cons, & Caveats of each Format


Special Populations and Using RPGs to Achieve Educational & Therapeutic Goals

  • Accessibility advocacy & adaptive considerations

  • Example educational & therapeutic program plans

  • Pedagogical learning

  • Life-skills learning

  • Brain-injury recovery

  • Social & emotional learning

  • Social phobias

  • Memory and navigation abilities

  • Neuro-plasticity

  • Happiness

  • Prefrontal cortex gray matter

  • 2 types of “escapism”: self-suppression and self-expansion

  • Trait-based variance in reactivity to simulated violence

  • ADHD

  • ASD / PDD

  • Deaf

  • At-risk and troubled youth

  • Substance abuse recovery transition programs

  • Trauma, PTSD, sexual abuse, abusers


Professional Services & Standardization

  • Role-Playing Gaming Recreation Therapy Handbook of Practice, including WHO ICD/ICF

  • The Wheelchair Friendly RPG Trailer

  • Training options

    • Training for “laypersons”

    • RPG Training for TR Specialists & other care professionals

    • Self-training

    • RPG Therapeutics LLC Training offerings

      • On-site training
      • Live remote training
      • Pre-recorded video training
      • Self-training
      • Public research archives
      • Youtube Channels
      • Additional Resources


Final Summary








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