Dragonslayer

“If you have to fight a dragon, you should go to its lair before it comes to your village.”

Jordan Peterson

“Dragonslayer” is the second half of the name of the blog you are reading.

You overcome countless monsters in adventure RPGs. None of them are more classic than the fierce and mighty dragon.

Dragons crawl on the ground like serpents, climb trees like predators, fly overhead, and, of course, breathe fire. They wield sharp teeth, wicked claws, and did I mention the fire yet? They send armies running and destroy castles, stealing women and gold, and laughing the terrible laughs of evildoers.

Let Smaug tell you all about it.

Dragons are featured prominently in RPGs. I mean, the granddaddy is called “Dungeons and DRAGONS.”

Dungeons & Dragons Basic Rules, Set 1 [BOX SET]: Frank Mentzer ...
This was my start in adventure gaming. Just 28 years later with D&D’s fourth edition.

And yet, fearsome as these creatures are, we slay them. These supernatural beasts are a true trial and danger. We celebrate dragonslayers: Sir George, Beowulf, and Bard the Bowman (featured prominently on this site). They are heroes we look up to for their mighty deeds and true bravery.

Prince Philip fights a fire breathing dragon in"Sleeping Beauty ...
Prince Philip versus Maleficent. Classic fight, classic animation.

In RPGs, we tackle problems all the time. RPGs need a source of conflict. We often show conflict through external threats and it’s a testament to someone’s competence to slay and conquer enemies. That show of wits and skill transfers, believe it or not. Killing Othkurik the Unending might not help you with filling out your tax forms, but you might just know what it means to have tenacity in a fight. You become persistent and persevere in more and more challenges throughout your life.

After slogging through the swampland of the Witchlight Fens, you can handle changing a diaper. You’ve talked down the elf-king from marching his forces against the men of east, could you give your brother or sister some sage advice when they really need it? Now that you’ve proven you can handle goblins, are you really going to be bested by the antics of petty coworkers? Again, not to say the tactics are the same, but you become more and more a problem-solver and a tactical thinker, less of an unhinged fool.

Problems are problems are problems. Solving one makes you stronger and wiser for the next one.

There are dragons around you. Maybe that pile of paperwork doesn’t breathe fire, but it’s laying waste to your village. Take on the challenge.

Pick up your sword and whatever courage you can muster.

Charge.

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