The Curiosity Room

The digital library of Thom Woodley: film work, webseries, advertising and ephemera.

Copyright 2007-2012
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I have two children, and one of the things I want to inculcate in them is the same love of storytelling that I have.

So for Christmas 2013, I made them a homemade game which would lead them to enjoy creating stories, and help them tell stories to each other.

I produced about a hundred cards, each with a fairy tale, myth or fantasy story element on it, from specific heroes, monsters, locations, events, helpers, magic objects, etc. I just grabbed visual elements from Google Image search, since this is a home-play only copy.

I also produced a very makeshift board that has places to put the cards that correspond roughly to Hero's Journey of Joseph Campbell's Hero Journey.

There are many ways to play.

1) Solo play. Grab 14 cards and arrange them against the board in slots that make sense. Pick your Hero, their Goal, their Home, their Obstacles, Solutions, etc. Then form a story. This is great as an inspiration-jogging writing exercise.

2) Dual or group play. Keep the cards arranged in rough groups of Hero, Location, Villain, Treasure, Helper, and Event. Then pick one from each pile and force the next player in line to tell the story. Then, that player picks.

3) OR, shuffle all the cards together. Everybody grabs a certain number of cards and begins to tell a story, going round-robin, each person adding a card and expanding the story.

And there are countless more, I'm sure. The only limit is my kids' creativity - which so far seems to be pretty boundless.

Below are a smattering of cards (including my kids' favorite, the Pug).

This project is currently being given new art so that it might be packaged and sold in stores.