Failing Forward: Life Lessons from Tabletop Roleplaying Games

Tabletop roleplaying games (TTRPGs) allow you to take risks and try new things in a safe environment, while still allowing you to gain the experience in creative thinking and problem solving (Even if the specific scenarios, such as being captured by giants or allowing an interdimensional wizard to bring about the end of the world, may never happen).

They help you learn how to cope with failures and work together to keep moving forward. The concept of “failing forward” centres on the idea that failure doesn’t stop progression. TTRPGs have gone from fringe subculture into the mainstream – Being included in popular television series, getting blockbuster movie adaptations, live-play podcasts and web series – It’s now more accessible than ever.

At Kingston Libraries we are leveraging the growing popularity of Dungeons & Dragons to engage with youth through a fortnightly gaming group. Our program is being run to engage teens with the library and each other, and also to help them learn how to work with others, build resilience and discover themselves.

With such diverse delivery options, from low-tech pen and paper to fully online, or a comfortable blend of the two, there is likely a way for you to offer a program that suits your patrons’ needs. Come and learn from our journey so that you can harness the power of TTRPGs in your library too.

Felipe Jeges

Children and Youth Services Librarian, Kingston Libraries

Author Bio

Felipe Jeges is a passionate Children & Youth Services Librarian with 7+ years’ experience. He champions the integration of emerging technologies and games in libraries. His initiatives bring people together, igniting curiosity and excitement within the library and the broader community.