The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News


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COLUMN: Journey of an imaginary lifetime

I grew up hearing that the worst type of nerd was a D&D nerd.

Even now, anytime the word D&D or Dungeons and Dragons is thrown around, it tends to come with “ew, that’s for nerds.”

See, I had known very little about D&D apart from people who roll 20-sided dice and things happen. That was it.

I had no knowledge of any of the inner workings of what made Dungeons and Dragons the game that it is. Even seeing shows where it was talked about, it is always the stereotypical nerd who is getting bullied for it.

At the end of last semester, I played my very first D&D session. I was a bit hesitant at first as I genuinely thought it was a board game of some sort.

Do not get me wrong, I do not hate board games, I was ignorant of what the game actually entailed.

Our Dungeon Master or DM for short, Eli, helped me create my character before the first session and tried to explain to me what D&D was. He ended the conversation with “It makes more sense when you play it yourself.”

This made me excited to find out what it was truly about. However, when the day we decided to play arrived, my anxiety heightened.

The first session was a one-shot which means a full story from start to finish in one sitting. We sat there for six hours pretending to be fake people and I have to say- I have never had so much fun just talking and rolling dice.

When we sat down, I had this goofy character planned and then the nerves hit me, so I stayed silent to just listen and learn. Whenever I did talk, it was one word at a time as I was afraid to mess up.

I had made myself think that I would ruin the fun if I talked too much, or my character wasn’t “good enough.” This is 100% not the case. One of my friends had a half-orc with a lisp, another a teeny tiny gnome with a very deep voice, and a bard that plays Nicki Minaj when we go places.

So, I rolled with it (ha- get the joke), my character, Kalspira, nicknamed Kal, now only talks in one word at a time.

It honestly fits her personality and backstory better even if it was accidental. She is somehow one of the group’s favorites as she is just a very buff woman who punches her way through life.

Literally, she is a fighter class and way too strong. The number of times I say “Kal is going to deck him in the face” is insane.

Once I decided I just wanted to run at a creature and with sheer strength and a roll of 18, I beat it in one move.

Now, I get it, this sounds confusing but truly, once you play, it makes so much sense. I still do not understand why D&D gets such a bad rap. Maybe it is the aspect of dice rolling, maybe it is the fact you are role-playing, or maybe it is just plain lack of knowledge.

As I write this, we just finished up our 4th session.

In total, I have spent about 21 hours pretending to be a buff woman in a far-off land with eight of my friends. Yes, all you D&D people out there, we have a nine-person campaign.

I can say, I have missed out for so long based on the fact I just chose to believe other people’s opinions.

So, if you ever want to have some fun with friends, find a DM or just make up a random story, and pretend to be someone else for a while.

You might just learn something about yourself on the journey.

Kierstyn Budz can be reached at [email protected] or 217-581-2812.

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About the Contributor
Kierstyn Budz, Columnist
Kierstyn Budz is a senior English major. This is her first year at The News. 

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