Good Systems to get started with RPGing?

So, I got this nephew, and he’s like 13 or something, and he’s been asking for a few years now about those cool posters and weird books I have at my place… I kept stalling for a while, but it may just be time to introduce him and a few friends to RPGs sometime soon…

Here’s my question: What systems (rules, settings, worlds etc.) would you recommend for introducing new players (young teens) into the hobby?

Decades ago, yours truly started with DSA and D&D - but that’s hardly an option these days^^
(unless I could dig out the Red Box D&D or an edition of DSA 1 or 2, which I can’t however, cause I lost them over the years)

Looking at contemporary DSA and D&D, with rulebooks of several hundred pages of rather complex rules content… I somehow suspect handing them those might be a surefire way to scare them off the hobby for good :wink:

So, what simple (okay, comparatively simple) rulesets, with (comparatively) easily accessible settings (for an age bracket of around 11-14) are there?

I’m happy about any suggestions, maybe some of you have even introduced kids to RPGs themselves?

PS.: existence of German versions is welcome, but not required. I would run it for them anyways, at least the first few times, and can certainly translate char sheets and even rules texts sufficiently

PPS.: their interests reside (as reliably predictable for that age group) somewhere between “LotR is AWESOME!” and “Star Wars is EVEN MORE SO!!!” :wink:

Actually, D&D is still a valid option. The new edition has seen its rules streamlined and made easier.

If they are into SW; the new RPG from Fantasy Flight might also work. The basics are simple enough…
And; at 13 they are no longer little kids, they should be able to grasp any games, really…

Three answers (because one would be too simple):

Anything you enjoy running, because your enthusiasm is more important than the system. [Insert system matters wisecrack here.]

Basic or AD&D, because (a) it worked for so many people, and (b) it’s always good to start at the beginning.

Gamebooks, because a gateway can really help before diving in.

Good luck!

Ooh, one more: I had great success playing Marvel Super Heroes with nephews. Superheroes, minis, fun mechanics, and some concepts since adopted by the indie crowd … good stuff!

One last one, since Star Wars is AWESOME: WEG Star Wars might be a great choice, too.


Do - Pilgrims of the Flying Temple worked well for me


as did Golden Sky Stories, and the WEG version of the Star Wars RPG

I guess (A)D&D (Retroclones) would work well as well

Good Luck !!!

QAGS, SHERPA and the like would probably work just fine

Thanks for the many helpful tips! I’ll be sure to let you know how it goes! :slight_smile: