Wil Wheaton’s 2009 Dwarven Dungeon Delve of Doom! Benefitting the Child’s Play Charity

I'm about to head out to RinCon, and before I left, I wanted to make sure I let everyone attending know that I'm doing what I think will be a pretty awesome fundraiser for Child's Play while I'm there.

First, some history: Way back in the olden days, when 8 bits were enough to blow your mind on a 13-inch television and digital watches were a pretty neat idea, the concept of the Dungeon Delve was born. It's pretty straightforward: a group of players and a Dungeon Master sit down together, and the players have 45 minutes or so to make it through the end of a short dungeon, while the Dungeon Master does his best to kill them. The delve ends when the players defeat the final boss (or solve the final puzzle, or something like that), the time limit is reached, or the players all die horrible but noble and heroic deaths.

It's different from the collaborative storytelling experience that we experience in my regular D&D games, but it's still a hell of a lot of fun, and the time limit makes it perfect for running at conventions.

So, with that bit of historical context in your heads, allow me to announce …

Wil Wheaton's 2009 Dwarven Dungeon Delve of Doom! Benefitting the Child's Play Charity.

I'm going to run two delves; one on Friday at 6pm and one on Sunday at 12pm. There are five spots open for each delve, and they'll be available on a first come, first served basis starting on Friday when the con opens. 

Because I'm doing this to benefit the Child's Play Charity, I'm asking for a $50 donation to get into the game. For that donation, you get:

  • A "very special, very awesome" gift bag from my friends at Wizards of the Coast. I don't want to ruin the surprise, but I talked to my friend there yesterday, and OMG is it going to be awesome. And special. But mostly awesome. 
  • Your very own set of dice to take home with you, engraved for the occasion, and provided by the good people at Gamestation dot Net.
  • Your old pal, Wil Wheaton, as your Dungeon Master.
  • You'll also be supporting an absolutely wonderful and worthy charitable organization.

We'll provide the characters, the minis, the dice (though you are of course welcome to use your own) and the dungeon. All you have to bring is your imagination and a donation to Child's Play.

To get into the game, all you have to do is sign up at the main registration desk before the available slots are filled. Even if you've never played D&D before, you can still have a lot of fun, in a relaxed and non-serious environment, with players and a DM who will certainly help you understand what's going on.

I'm pretty sure these spots will fill up very fast, but even if you can't get into the game, there will be space to come and watch us, if you're interested in that sort of thing.

97 thoughts on “Wil Wheaton’s 2009 Dwarven Dungeon Delve of Doom! Benefitting the Child’s Play Charity”

  1. Aww I’ve never played D&D before, but you make this event thing sound like so much fun, I wish I could go, and play! =) But alas, I am off in Europe, so I will simply tell you that, that sounds lovely, and wonderful that it’s for charity, and I hope you have a blast! =)

  2. Will, and why aren’t you doing this at other Cons??? You could be raising so much for Child’s Play (from me, particularly). Bay Area geeks would be fighting for table space… Sigh.

  3. ACK! Too bad I am not going to Rincon! Well if you decide to do something like this in LA, I will be the first one to sign up!
    Also, did registration for your Delve already open? The site already says there are no open spots left. LOL

  4. I so wish you’d come to the mid-west and do this sometime. I also love that it’s for Child’s Play Charity! My hospital is one that receives donations from CPC and it makes such a difference in making the lives of our kids more normal.

  5. Awesome idea! Do this in the LA area sometime (centered around a convention, or not), and I’m sure you’d get a big response too. I’m totally in if it’s local.

  6. I got the idea about 10 days ago. If it works out at RinCon, I’ll certainly make an effort to do it at other cons in the future.

  7. What about auctioning the slots of with a $50 start point, might raise a whole lot of money that way.
    Or you could do a lottery. A buck buys you a ticket. If your ticket is pulled, you pay the $50 and you’re in.
    think different
    Think Open Source

  8. If enough people here in town want to be part of something like this, I will totally look into doing something here.
    Are you coming to w00tstock later this month?

  9. We talked about that, but I worried that the idea of making a contribution for the opportunity to make a larger contribution would rub a lot of people the wrong way.

  10. Well, you’ll know your availability more so than the rest of us (even though we may push). The big one up here is the Kublacon at the end of May. Bay Area focus, but I’ve met people from all over the state (and some out of state). Minis galore and RPG madness!

  11. /cry
    I can’t believe I was just by happenstance going to be in Tucson starting Sunday. Unfortunately my flight gets in too late.
    You really need to make it out to Chicago one of these days…or at least GenCon in Indy.
    ‘fer serious.

  12. You’d be surprised. It’s harder to get people to come out to shows and events in Los Angeles than any other city I’ve ever been to.

  13. That does surprise me, but maybe its because I am a transplant from the Midwest. Myself and the lady bought tickets for Wootstock the moment I saw the post.

  14. Yeah! Hopefully we will get the chance to come over and say hi, we are totally looking forward to it. Thank YOU, for helping to bring these types of events to LA. Hopefully the turn out will be awesome.

  15. Wil, I just wanted to commend your support of Child’s Play. I work as a Child Life Specialist at a hospital, and have seen firsthand the good that games can do while a child is receiving medical treatment. Video games give them the sense of power and control that are often taken away by aspects of their treatment. They can be an outlet for emotional expression. They can be a much needed distraction from pain, discomfort, or boredom. Bringing these games to children in hospitals is about more than just fun, so kudos to you for using your geek and celebrity powers for awesome!

  16. This one probably won’t be recorded (at least by me) but if it’s a success, maybe we can think about recording future events. The thing is, it’s not just me; it’s all the participants, and they may not be as comfortable as I am being recorded and stuff.

  17. Brilliant idea, Wil! I can see this being a staple at Cons across the country. You could even do some sort of “Delve-a-Thon” event, where participants get pledges…for example, someone could get a bunch of pledges from their friends donating 20 cents, 50 cents or a dollar (etc) for each minute that their character survives “Wil’s Dungeon of Death”. Of course, the logistics of something like that would be a bit more complicated, but it wouldn’t have the stigma of an auction for a spot at the table.
    Speaking of cons…are there any in the pacific northwest you’re thinking of attending?

  18. This is a fantastic idea Wil, if I lived in the US or could fly over for RinCon I would definitely sign up.
    Child’s Play is a fantastic charity and this is a great idea to raise money for it. :)
    All the best! Hope to see lots of photos and stuff!
    (If you ever come to the UK, run some delves over here please! πŸ˜‰ )

  19. Wil,
    For those of us with no hope of making it there, any chance of a Podcast? Ala the DnD ones over at the WotC site in which you play such an awesome elf, er.. Eladrin* Avenger.
    *Spellings not my strong point
    **And I’m another one of your European fans
    ((Awww man, just saw the response to Gold. CC is a little less happy to be in Europe rather than Arizona/California right now))

  20. Any sites or tips you could give for pointers on doing a Dungeon Delve? My group of friends can’t meet regularly enough for a real campaign, and this seems like a good alternative.

  21. Maybe for next time, when you know what the demand will be like.
    They maybe highly desirable seats – you need to let the “force” of the market guide the donation stream.
    think different
    Think Open Source

  22. The Dungeon Delve book is great, and there are lots of short adventures and things at the official D&D site, and places like Critical Hits, Gnome Stew, enworld, and Paizo’s message boards.

  23. Add me to the list of folks who would 100% be in if you did one of these in LA! Sounds like a blast and I am pretty sure I still have a mini and a dice set tucked away someplace!
    I feel so liberated having outed myself as a geek just now. :)

  24. I can only speak for myself, but I wouldn’t have minded a $1 lottery ticket to then maybe win a chance to fork over another $50 to play. I mean, I think first come first served is easier and prefer it, but a lottery would have been okay. I hate auctions, though. While having the possibility of raising a lot of money (which is an important point in all of this) they really privilege only those with lots of disposable income. No matter how cool an event or item is I really only have a certain amount of money to spend on one thing right now. I have $50-$75 to spend on a chance to be part of this really cool thing. I don’t have $100+ to spend even though I really wish I did and would gladly give it over if I had it. I would have immediately taken myself out of trying to get a seat if this had been an auction because I probably couldn’t afford it. Also, I would have been really bummed. This way, hey, if I don’t get a spot it just means I wasn’t quick enough and can be happy watching the delve knowing Child’s Play still got $500.

  25. If this was anywhere close, I’d so be there. Even if I had to drive the 5 hours of LA, it’d be at the top of my list. If it was the same weekend TMBG was there (or in San Francisco, come up north, Wil!), that would be a perfect geek weekend.

  26. This is a fantastic idea, Wil. I hope it goes very well.
    If you haven’t written the delve, may I make a suggestion? Some of the stuff in Monte Cook’s Dungeon a Day is particularly well suited for delving. I’ve used a few in one shot games at home since you turned me on to the site. And any time I can support Monte Cook, I will.
    I do hope you’ll consider doing this in the future at other cons (or, you know, a trip to Central Texas just for the scenery). I would happily donate much more than $50 for that opportunity (because it’s a fantastic charity and it would be a great experience) even without the goodies. The goodies alone are worth the donation.
    Godspeed and thanks for supporting Child’s Play.

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