The University of Maine’s Dungeons and Dragons club, which was established in 2017, is a welcoming and fun community-based organization.
Dungeons and Dragons is a fantasy tabletop roleplaying game in which players and a Dungeon Master collaborate to tell stories through a game of chance and the roll of seven polyhedral dice.
The Vice President of the club, Hermės Diou-Cass said, “It is an imaginative shared storytelling experience.”
The club runs on a West March system, meaning each quest or game takes place in the same world. The world is named Ebberon, and it is the background for all club campaigns.
The club is open to current undergraduate students, graduate students, alumni and community members and is free to join. There are no club dues or expensive equipment required. The majority of the club’s communication is done through their Discord, and it is where they share the location and timing of the meetings.
The club also has a number of Dungeons and Dragons resources, such as dice, screens, books and more that are free for members to use. Members are able to sign the equipment out by talking to the club’s treasurer.
Currently, their Discord is home to over 500 members, and the club itself is one of the largest Dungeons and Dragons clubs on the entire East Coast. A club of this size is a big responsibility to run and can be difficult to keep organized, but the officers have put in hard work to ensure everything runs smoothly.
“It’s sometimes hard to remember that the club is run completely by volunteers,” remarked Diou-Cass.
Dungeons and Dragons Club is open to all skill levels, so the officers try hard to make it as welcoming as possible. They have games that vary in challenge ratings so new or returning players can all have fun.
Additionally, there are different lengths of games that members can join. One of these levels is called encounters and is usually one to two sessions, which are four hours long. Another level is adventures, which are usually three to seven sessions long.
The club has both online and in-person sessions for players to sign up to play. The online games are played on the free application called Roll 20 and also use the Discord voice chats.
The club tries to be as flexible with everyone’s schedules as possible and wants everyone interested to join for as little or as long as they want. The flexible schedule also allows for its members to take a break from the club and then return to new quests and challenges as if nothing ever happened.
On Sept. 29th, the fifth town session was held in the Coe room, not the typical Bangor room, at 4:30 p.m. The town sessions are the club’s weekly meetings where new members can become acquainted with current members, a place to review what has happened in games and learn about upcoming events. The town sessions are lively and allow members to get thrown right into action.
At each meeting, there is a brief overview of how the club runs and some of the policies, including the yellow card policy, which ensures that the club remains a safe environment for all members. A yellow card is for any time a player feels uncomfortable during gameplay and will cause the game to come to a stop until the problem can be resolved. The yellow card policy can be used during any of the games, whether it is a one-shot or a recurring quest and can be anonymous. The club takes these very seriously and does not tolerate any jokes surrounding the yellow cards.
The yellow cards and many other club policies help to make sure everyone within the club is able to keep having fun in a safe and comfortable environment. This is really the true intention of the club, to have fun and make friends.
Diou-Cass said, “People are so dedicated to rolling stupid little dice, and committed to having fun together.”
The club has been trying to reach interested people and has co-hosted events with the campus activities board, like DND Night, that allow everyone to come and test out playing the game for themselves. They also plan to host a number of events, such as a Harvest Festival during Thanksgiving and a Winter Celebration over winter break.
Interested people can join the club’s Discord at www.discord.gg/umainednd or come to one of the club’s weekly town sessions at 4:30 p.m. on Fridays in the Bangor room.