Monday, April 27, 2020

What We Like About Horror and Sci-Fi Games and What Makes the Genres So Interesting

Nerding Out Over Horror and Science Fiction
by Hannah

Today's post is near to my heart, as a huge fan of horror and science fiction games, and for some of it I have actually decided to pull from a research project for a class I took last summer on New Media Studies. What is interesting to me is that even though the mediums that host these genres differ so widely from one another, they still manage to capture my imagination every time. In my opinion, some of the best horror and science fiction board games include Betrayal at House on the Hill, Nemesis, and The Others 7 Sins. However, don't forget the RPGs that also masterfully incorporate genre, such as Mothership, Dread, and Disciples of Bone and Shadow. Part of what I think fascinates and attracts us to these games is the air of mystery that permeates every layer of the experience of playing them, but what is so attractive about the mysterious insofar as it relates to horror and science fiction?

When we consider the way that media pervades our lives in varying forms, it becomes easier to understand our changing relationship to genre as well. "In its own way media has become the immanent—a physical manifestation of the divine. For instance, in Black Mirror’s “Nosedive,” the [cell] phone becomes a tool of moral judgement and maintaining socioeconomic status. Lacie, the protagonist, is constantly holding her phone, as are most other characters in the episode, and it becomes apparent that the phone app everyone uses has a higher authority than any individual and may mete out judgement for behavior that it does not deem acceptable. The phone app and, by extension, the phone has then become an ideological apparatus, maintaining the status quo at all costs. The significance of technology as extensions of man and as holy artifacts is important to keep in mind when discussing how these ideas relate to the genre of horror.             

The development of horror as a word also offers some interesting points of discussion in terms of how new media relates to the aesthetic of the horror genre in the modern era. When one considers how horror originates as a noun encompassing the action of hairs standing on end, it is interesting how the word has been displaced to describe that object which inspires the fear response in the first place. (“The Hirsute History of 'Horror'”)

If one were to take an imaginative leap, it might be plausible that the experience of the fear response is intense enough that it was necessary to give its cause (i.e. a potentially ineffable thing) a suitable name, but more likely this is simply the result of natural shifts in meaning and usage. Regardless, it is an interesting thread to follow. The etymological origin of horror branches off to form another word in abhor, the prefix of which, “ab,” means “away from”—to tremble or shudder away from something (Cresswell, 1). Ineffable and abhor are important words to keep in mind moving forward.

The next leap to be made then links ideas of horror through the ages and Rudolf Otto’s The Idea of the Holy. In his seminal work Otto introduces an important vocabulary for discussing ideas of the holy and immanence. In particular he is interested in divorcing what is at the core of the term Holy (i.e., its moral and philosophical implications) from the actual thing in and of itself. In reference to that unnamable something, Otto writes, 'There is no religion in which it does not live as the real inner most core, and without it no religion would be worthy of the name' (loc. 327).

There is significance in divorcing the ineffable something behind the Holy from the word holy itself, which has myriad ethical and moral implications, especially in regards to horror and science fiction. Horror and science fiction have progressively more and more crossover, so that in order to discuss science fiction one must usually discuss it as a subset of horror or vice versa. The most significant link between science fiction and horror as intertwined traditions is the experience of the sublime. ...[T]he Gothic novel [, the influence of which is felt to this day in both genres,] and the tropes it produced are linked with the aesthetic values of the Romantic movement in literature in a significant way. The experience of the sublime is significant to Otto’s work, which helps to illuminate a definitional understanding of the stages of the sublime experience.

In The Idea of the Holy Otto introduces terms central to discussing the significance of horror and science fiction in the collective intelligence of society. These terms include numinous, mysterium tremendum, and fascinans. Particularly the experience of the mysterium tremendum is important to the fascination society has with monsters and aliens—or with simultaneous fear and awe. Otto writes that the experience of the mysterium tremendum may be a '…sudden eruption up from the depths of the soul with spasms and convulsions, or [that it might] lead to the strangest excitements, to intoxicated frenzy, to transport, and to ecstasy. It has its wild and demonic forms and can sink to an almost grisly horror and shuddering'(loc. 434).

The experience of the sublime is a more artistic and philosophical form of the mysterium tremendum experience but shares many of the same principles. A perfect example in cinema of a film that captures the heart of the mysterium tremendum would be 2001: A Space Odyssey. The obelisk, around which all of the scientists and researchers gather, acts as a manifestation of the numinous (i.e., that great something that exists at the core of the Holy), and it acts simultaneously as a force of complete and total autoamputation in the Mcluhanian sense. It is without history or creed and yet humans are both drawn toward it and repulsed by it—exquisite disgust." (Hannah Trammell)

When we get a shudder down our spine as we flip over the next room tile in Betrayal or when the Jenga tower trembles just a little too much in Dread, we also must realize that that shudder is part of why we played these games in the first place. Fear or anxiety does not always have to be unpleasant--it can be exciting or it can bring us closer to the experience of something truly alien or unknowable. One of my favorite book-to-movie adaptations is Annhilation. While so much of the plot differs between the book and movie, the movie does maintain the philosophical impetus that drives the book forward. It is a meditation on human experience in the face of the utterly unknowable. In their small, sometimes less intense ways, board games make us feel this too and sometimes even more so because of their physicality. The construction of each of the aforementioned games is so wholly different that each experience is different. Perhaps, we love these games and these genres so much because they offer a safe entrance into an otherwise unapproachable experience.

Works Cited

Cresswell, Julia. Oxford Dictionary of Word Origins. Oxford University Press, 2010.

“The Hirsute History of 'Horror'.” Merriam-Webster, Merriam-Webster,

 Otto, Rudolf. The idea of the holy : an inquiry into the non-rational factor in the idea of the divine and its relation to the rational . London : H. Milford, Oxford University Press. Kindle Edition.             

Trammell, Hannah. "New Media and the Genres of Science Fiction and Horror in Film and Television." Unpublished.

Friday, April 24, 2020

Board Games as Homeschooling Tools (Elementary)

Board Games as Homeschooling Tools (Elementary School Edition)

by Melissa

Greetings once again, fellow parents! You may have read my previous blog post for Labyrinth highlighting great homeschooling games for preschoolers and thought, “but what about my big kids?” Fear not! I also have game suggestions for sneaking in some extra education for your elementary school children.


This game is not only fun, but it is a good way to get your kids thinking about habitats and biomes. In Planet, each player is trying to create their own perfect world using a (VERY COOL) 12-sided, 3-dimensional, magnetic planet. Players add tiles consisting of different biomes in order to attract different animals to their planet. As a follow on activity you could even have your kids create their own animal cards.

Century Spice Road

This game is a favorite in my game group, but is also easy to learn an offers great educational opportunities. In Century Spice Road, you trade spices in order to complete orders and earn the most victory points. This game provides a unique opportunity to talk about the history and importance of spices and trade along the Silk Road. Not only could you learn about the different countries along the Silk Road, but why not try cooking or baking a dish using some of the spices featured in this clever game?


Unlock! Is a card-based escape room adventure played over the course of one hour. Players work together to solve puzzles and escape! While younger children could help solve puzzles involving searching the cards for numbers, this game is best for older elementary school children (10+). While not aligned with any one subject the Unlock! series of games provides lots of opportunities for critical thinking, problem solving and cooperation.

Dungeons & Dragons books can be bought here:

Now is a great time to get your kids creative juices flowing and dive into the wonderful world of Role Playing Games! RPGs are wonderful ways for kids to express themselves – they can write their own adventures, act out their character or even sketch epic monsters. Dungeons and Dragons is a classic and good way to introduce your kids to D&D. As an added bonus Labyrinth also offers Virtual Kids’ D&D sessions which are beginner friendly and loads of fun. Most recently our young heroes have helped out a trio of bumbling mages, adopted baby mimic monsters and rescued a port town from disaster.

Monday, April 20, 2020

The Importance of Board Games While Working From Home

Board Games Reifying Social Connection
by Hannah

Hello, dear readers, I am writing to you today to discuss the significant quality of life impact that playing board games during these times can have. With so many people being forced to reconfigure their work-life balance and set-up, it can be difficult to find the time for enjoyable activities that still manage to stimulate our brains in a collective manner. What I mean to say is that it is difficult to set out time to play games with other people that require us to really talk with each other, especially with how tiring this overhaul of our lives has necessarily been. This is true for those of us with spouses, partners, roommates, and children to consider or for those of us living by ourselves. This is also very true for those of us struggling with exacerbated or awakened mental health issues. There is no doubt that we all need some form of relief.

These past few weeks have been a surreal bad dream, but I have found solace in pulling myself away from my computer, my Nintendo Switch, or the television, whichever I was using to deaden my brain for a brief time (an important part of protecting our health too), and then breaking out a board game to play with my partner or with our friends over Zoom. Honestly the need for an activity that didn't require any screens (or no more than one Zoom screen for seeing our friends' faces) and allowed us to engage in a very immediate way was the original impetus that drove me and my partner, Josh, to start collecting board games in the first place. As much as we love video games, we needed some form of present and immediate interaction that I think the simulated worlds of video games are often unable to provide by the very nature of their medium. They are always immediately removed by several layers from our experience--they are always immediately mediated. They are a wonderful escape in their way and often a medium rife with amazing storytelling and world-building, but they also helps us to negate the outside world and our immediate social connections to an extent in a way that can be alienating in high doses, depending on a wide variety of factors, which I can't entirely cover here. 

The physicality of board games is certainly more immediate in a very literal way, but the actual rules and systems involved in a board game require our brains to process and function. In a sense we become the processor for the programs and systems of the game. In this way, board games seem to engage us in a special way that is differentiated from video games by this sense of presentness. When we play board games with other people, we engage in these meaning-making and system running functions with another person. Regardless of a game's competitive or cooperative nature, players still work together to enforce rules and engage in a game's specific systems, giving them weight and doing some world-making for the game.

Sitting across from my partner and actually looking at him, whether that is to consider if he is going to ruin my plans to sell my goods by selling his first or if he is going to deep strike a Terminator behind my Sybarite, it is still looking at him with a specific attentiveness that is often missed in the chaos of the day. We actually take time to be together in an intelligent but still playful way when we break out a board game. These times remind us how it feels to really connect socially and intellectually.

It is this presentness that has made playing board games so important to me and Josh right now, as so much of daily routine has imploded in on itself. We find each other again when we play games like Brass Birmingham or Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective, and we find a way to experience closeness with our friends even over the computer through these games. They pull back the layers of numbness created by binging video games and television in the evenings and allow some real shared joy and playfulness to be reintroduced to our lives. 

Friday, April 17, 2020

A Beginner's Guide to Magic the Gathering and MTG Arena

Magic: The Gathering – How-To-Play and Magic Arena
by Alex

Welcome Magic Players and Magic Learners! These pages are intended to be an introduction and a jumping off point for learning more about the mechanics of Magic and the basics of using Magic Arena. But first of all; Welcome to the worlds of Magic: The Gathering! You play as a Planeswalker, a powerful wizard who travels to the infinite planes of the Multiverse, a vast variety of worlds just waiting for you to tap into their pools of mana, creatures, and powerful spells. No matter how you want to play Magic, there is most assuredly a deck that is right for you. It can seem a little daunting at first, but the more you play and practice at the game, the better you will be able to make sense of how all the cards work together. Remember: reading the card explains the card! Creatures not only attack and defend you from attacks, but can also have a wide variety of abilities. Always make sure that you know how the cards that you play affect the game. We’ve broken this guide into several parts; starting with a little bit of color philosophy and what it means to play that color in the game, followed by the different card types, and so on. If you have any questions about Magic in any capacity, please ask us on Labyrinth’s Facebook page or @LabyrinthDC on our Discord page; our team and our Magic Judges will be more than happy to assist you in your magical endeavors. 

Part One: Color Pie

  • White: Law, order, and structure. Coordinated armies of smaller creatures.
  • Blue: Trickery and manipulation. Controlling the battlefield and outsmarting opponents.
  • Black: Death, disease, and power at any cost. Summoning horrors and raising the dead.
  • Red: Destruction and reckless passion. Killing opponents as fast as possible with fire.
  • Green: Growth, life, and brute force. Big creatures and spells to make them even bigger.

Part Two: Card Types


  • Land: Play one per turn; tap to generate mana to pay for spells. There are five types of basic land, each of which produces a discreet color of mana. Plains produces white mana, Island for blue, Swamp for black, Mountain for red, and Forest for green. In addition, there are non-basic lands which may also have abilities, in addition to often being able to tap for multiple colors of mana.  
  • Creature: These are your primary method of dealing damage to your opponent. Creatures are able to both attack and defend. 
    • During the turn in which they are summoned (cast and brought to the battlefield), creatures are unable to do anything that requires them to be tapped, but they can be tapped by external effects.
    • When creatures attack, they should be turned sideways so as to represent that they have attacked and cannot block or use activated abilities that involve tapping until the beginning of your next turn.
    • Normally, creatures that attack on your turn cannot block during your opponent’s turn.
  • Artifact: Objects of magical artifice that provide useful benefits to the player and to creatures and other permanents that you control.
    • Equipment: Subset of artifacts that can become attached to a creature for a cost, giving a permanent boost in some fashion as long as the artifact is equipped.
  • Planeswalker: Representing temporary allies that the player may summon to aid them in battle, these cards enter the battlefield with a number of loyalty counters equal to the number on the bottom right of the card. When the Planeswalker loses all its loyalty, it is placed into the graveyard.
    • Loyalty is a resource that can be accumulated or spent, according to the cost of the abilities listed on the card. (Note: The “cost” of a Planeswalker ability can mean adding loyalty counters, as well as removing them.)
      • You cannot spend more loyalty counters than those which Planeswalker already possesses.
      • A player may choose to activate one of the abilities of each of their Planeswalkers, once per turn, during a main phase.
    • Creatures may choose to attack an opposing Planeswalker rather than their controller’s opponent. If they successfully do so, they remove a number of loyalty counters equal to their power from the Planeswalker.
    • Damage from spells or abilities that affect a Planeswalker will remove a number of loyalty counters, equal to the damage being done, from that Planeswalker. If a creature is dealt damage at least equal to its toughness, it is destroyed and is placed in the graveyard.
  • Enchantment: Mystical charms that remain on the battlefield and provide a continuous effect.
    • Aura: Subset of enchantments that must be attached to a creature or other permanent.


  • Instant: Can be cast at any time, even during another player’s turn. Has a one-time effect, after which it is placed in the graveyard.
  • Sorcery: Can only be cast during one of your own main phases. Has a one-time effect, after which it is placed in the graveyard.

Part Three: Parts of a Turn, Abbreviated

  • Untap 
  • Upkeep
  • Draw
  • Main Phase One (Pre-combat Main Phase)
    • Play a land, cast creatures and/or sorceries 
  • Combat
    • Beginning of Combat
    • Declare Attackers
    • Declare Blockers
    • Combat Damage
    • End of Combat
  • Main Phase Two (Post-combat Main Phase)
    • Play a land if you haven’t already, cast creatures and/or sorceries
  • Ending Phase
    • Cleanup Step - creatures heal
    • Pass turn to Opponent

Part Four: How to Read a Card

Name: Shivan Dragon

Converted Mana Cost (CMC): 6 total; 4 of any color and 2 Red Mana

Type Line: Creature - Dragon

Rules Text: Flying (This creature can’t be blocked except by creatures with flying or reach.) Activated Ability - Pay one Red Mana: Shivan Dragon gets +1/+0 until end of turn.

Power/Toughness: 5/5

Part Five: Anatomy of a Game and Turn Sequence Expanded

Starting a Game:
  1. Each player starts with 20 life points. First person to reduce their opponent’s life to 0 wins. Twenty-sided dice can be used to more easily track life totals; this can also be done with pen and paper.
  2. Randomly decide who goes first. Usually done by rolling a die, with the winner making the decision of playing first or drawing first.
  3. Each player shuffles their library and draws a hand of 7 cards. Generally, players are looking for a hand of 2-3 lands and 4-5 low-cost spells.
  4. Starting with the player going first, each player decides if they want to take a mulligan. If they choose to do so, they shuffle their hand back into their library and draw a new hand of seven; that player then chooses a number of cards in their hand equal to the number of mulligans they have taken, and places those cards on the bottom of their library in any order. Players may repeat the process until they are satisfied with their opening hands (This is called a London Mulligan).
Turn Sequence:
  1. Untap – Active player untaps their tapped cards, unless otherwise prevented from doing so. 
    1. Spells cannot be cast during the untap step.
  2. Upkeep – Any effects that are specifically noted to happen during upkeep occur.
  3. Draw – Active player draws a card from the top of their library.
    1. This does not happen on the first turn of the game.
  4. First Main Phase – The active player is permitted to play lands (one land per turn, unless otherwise permitted), summon creatures, and cast spells, if they choose.
  5. Combat Phase:
    1. Declare Attackers – Active player declares which of their creatures are attacking the defending player, if any, and taps said creatures.
    2. Declare Blockers – Defending player declares which of their untapped creatures are blocking specific attacking creatures, if any. Defending does not cause a creature to be tapped.
    3. Damage – All damage is assigned to all creatures and players simultaneously.
  6. Second Main Phase – The active player is permitted to play lands (one land per turn, unless otherwise permitted), summon creatures, and cast spells, if they choose.
  7. Ending Phase:
    1. End Step – Last chance to cast any spells or activate any abilities before the turn ends.
    2. Cleanup Step – Damage dealt to creatures during the turn, and any effects that last “until the end of the turn” are expunged simultaneously.

Part Six: Magic Arena

Magic Arena is an official online version of Magic: The Gathering, developed by Wizards of the Coast. It has been used as the premier medium for professional level tournaments as well as everyday casual play. Primarily focused on the Standard and Brawl formats, Magic Arena has a multitude of ways to play in different limited and constructed tournaments, as well as free play and ranked play. 
To use Magic Arena, one must first download the program from the Wizards website and then install it on your preferred computer. Once logged in, you will need to create an account with Wizards; at this time you can also input payment information if you intend to buy packs of cards in the Arena program. A word of advice: you do not have to pay anything for Magic Arena, but you will be limited to starter decks and what card rewards you can achieve at first until you can unlock more packs and build a greater variety of decks. Don’t be discouraged! The game will reward you for playing more and different decks, giving you coins that you can trade in for packs to get new and more powerful cards. 

Once you find an archetype or a couple of cards that you really like, spend some time getting to know what the cards can do and what their limitations are. Playing more and more with your preferred deck is the best way to get better at the game as a whole. If you know exactly what your cards do and when and how to cast them, you already have a leg up. It can be frustrating when you are just starting out and do not have all the cards that you want for a specific deck; take your time and practice with the cards that you do have. Building confidence and experience with the cards you do have and with the Arena program as a whole will serve you well when you can finally upgrade your favorite deck into something that is closer to competitive.

Monday, April 13, 2020

Setting Up My Painting Station at Home

A Journey in Making the Perfect Painting Space

by Hannah

In July of 2019 I moved to the Maryland--D.C. area from Norfolk, VA with my partner, Josh, who had recently been accepted to the University of Maryland for a Master's degree. I had started looking for a new place of work well before our move, and Labyrinth really caught my eye (I mean obviously). I felt super excited getting to interview and then getting offered a position, and everything was looking a lot more doable. My partner and I had gotten into board games a year before we moved, starting with Boss Monster and Azul and ending up with a lot of Warhammer Underworlds miniatures and Blood Rage. We love games with gorgeous miniatures a lot. So when I started working at Labyrinth, it really opened my eyes to a lot of new hobbies concomitant with our board game hobby, including painting!

Our apartment in Norfolk was an 800 square foot two-bedroom; however, given Maryland's average rent, we've downsized to a one bedroom apartment roughly half the size of our last place and we've had to come up with creative solutions to space problems. When Josh and I decided to start painting our miniatures, I brought home some Vallejo Game Colors, a Dungeons & Dragons Adventurer Paint Set, and black and white Army Painter spray primers all of which I'd bought from the store. Also we invested in some tool kits for removing our Warhammer miniatures from the sprues they are set in; those same tools also turned out to be great for cleaning up mold lines on the miniatures. Josh initially used the Army Painter primers and the D&D kit to paint the minis featured below, and then, after some research, we ordered Citadel Paints' Nuln-Oil and Agrax Earthshade, which are super helpful for making beginning paint jobs look more polished once the prime coat and base coats are done. As our hobby evolved, we kept having to reconfigure the space in which we were practicing it.

We had a large kitchen island left over from our last place that was nice, but wasn't going to fit in the kitchen in our new place, so we decided initially to set it up in the living room corner as a breakfast/coffee bar, but once we started painting, the hobby took over the whole surface. Over time we have found new ways to re-imagine the space to be more and more comfortable for us both to sit down and paint side-by-side. For instance we realized, after we began collecting new colors for different models, that we didn't really have space for all the paint bottles and wells to sit loose on the counter top, so we ordered some inexpensive metal shelves and command hooks and set them on the wall right next to the station.

The kitchen cart we are using also has shelves under the counter, but the counter is constructed in such a way that, for the overhanging counter to be facing outwards in the corner where we have it, we have to have the shelves face the wall. However, I realized the other day that I could remove the thin wooden panels from the back of the cart to reopen the shelf space. It has since cleared the space even more, so that we now can both comfortably fit at the counter while painting.

We also have found the purchase of painting handles helps immensely with getting detail work done on the minis, though, as you can see below, I could still use more practice. Though in all fairness, these two are still in progress, and I am excited to get better with each mini on which I work.

Josh, who has been painting more voraciously than me, has improved remarkably through repeated practice, and has several really polished looking minis. In the picture below, you can see one of the first miniatures he painted on the left and on the right is one of his most recent. There is a huge difference between his early paint work and the clarity of his latest minis and I am working on getting to the same level. I think part of the fun of this hobby is discovering new paint types from more learned painters and new methods through trial and error. 

We have also found a good set up for our palette and our paint brushes, using some inexpensive baskets and a tupperware dish.

We've really come to enjoy painting as individuals but also as a couple, and the aesthetically pleasing set up we have managed to create for our paint station has helped immensely. Ever since I began working at Labyrinth my love for board games has only deepened, especially as I have become acquainted with our vibrant community. The experience has been and is a huge boon. I even picked up a renewed passion for tabletop RPGs, which I hadn't been able to play in a long time, since the community didn't exist where we lived previously. Now I am DM'ing for our Kids' D&D sessions, and I am having a blast getting back into it and delving into the Forgotten Realms once again. My next project is to paint my own D&D character--a Yuan Ti Pureblood Warlock with high intelligence and very low wisdom (much like me). It's a good thing I've got the perfect set up to do just that.

What's your experience with painting been like and how do you like to configure your workspace? Let us know in the comments, and be sure to keep an eye out for our next blog post this Friday at 10am!

Friday, April 10, 2020

Board Games as Homeschooling Tools (Preschool)

Sneaking in Education with Board Games – Preschool Edition

by Melissa

Greetings! My name is Melissa and you will often find me on the “children’s side” of Labyrinth or teaching our First Moves Game Club for Little Kids. Before working at Labyrinth I spent almost 15 years working as an elementary and middle school teacher. Now, I find myself once again in the role of teacher, but this time to my 5-year-old daughter. Using games to reinforce concepts is something that has worked well in this unexpected homeschooling adventure. Here are three of our favorite games and how we are using them.

Ticket to Ride: First Journey

(image from publisher:

This game is a simplified version of the classic train game Ticket to Ride. You collect cards of the same color to create train routes between different destinations. This game has become a fast favorite! Not only does it help with skills like turn-taking and counting, but it has also been a great way to sneak in some geography. I ask simple questions like, “Why do you think there is a picture of an alligator on Miami?” or “Is San Francisco or Calgary closer to Winnipeg?” My daughter also has a wonderful time planning routes between our old home in California and our new home in Virginia.

My First Bananagrams

(some rights reserved: )

This is the most blatantly education game on the list for today. My First Bananagrams uses lower-case letter tiles for players to form crossword style words. We use this both as a game and as a learning tool. We use the letters to spell out sight words or to lay out the alphabet in order. For a fun sensory activity these tiles can be hidden in a tub of rice or sand. They are also fun to use to make crayon rubbings! As an added bonus the game comes in a silly banana-shaped pouch.

Dragon’s Breath
 (image from publisher:

We use this game as a “brain break” between more structured Zoom School lessons. In this game you remove “ice” rings to free different colored crystals. We use this game to reinforce basic counting and colors. It is also great for teaching children about estimation, probability and fine motor control. We estimate the number of crystals each person has before counting the final totals. We discuss which colors are most likely to fall each turn, and we also discuss removing the ice rings and collecting crystals.

I wish you all well on your homeschooling adventures and hope you are able to find some time to incorporate some games into your daily schedule. Stay safe and healthy!

Additional Notes

For those of you with older children (say between 10-15 years old), another option you all may want to consider is our online Kids D&D sessions, as these are also a great addition to current homeschooling practices. They offer the children a chance to socialize like they would at school, while being structured and guided by an adult who helps them to hone their creative storytelling skills as well as some basic math reinforcements with ability and skill checks. We'd like to also recommend D&D as a great family choice that can bring kids and parents together as a shared learning and storytelling experience.

If you've been using games to supplement your homeschooling methods, then why don't you let us know which games you've been using and what concepts they reinforce in the comments below?