Critical Core is a tabletop RPG from the not-for-profit company Game to Grow. They use therapeutic, education and community-led development to help kids on the autism spectrum with their social skills and self-confidence. Roleplaying has always been a part of that, and now they’ve put together a special product.
The Kickstarter is going well. It has funded and, at the time of writing, there are still 37 days on the clock. You can follow progress here.
Game to Grow has asked for $48,000, and that’s a high price for a tabletop RPG, but they’ve already smashed that request. A pledge of $30 gets you the digital version, $50 the starter set and $100 buys one for you and one for someone else. Right now, more people have bought a game for someone else than having just splashed the cash for themselves. That’s because gamers are fantastic.
The company says the game must have a parent or certified therapist present if played with young people on the spectrum. They also say experienced gamers will able to integrate Critical Core into their favourite system. The ruleset is adapted from the 5e SRD.
So, what’s so smart about the game?
It’s designed to help neurodiverse players stay engaged without feeling like therapy. It’s built around the DIR/Floortime model, and the game encounters map to the Function Emotional Development Capacities framework. This combination means the game tries to get to the foundations for healthy development and work up, rather than treat the symptoms.
I think… this is a weighty subject and an hour or so Googling around isn’t enough to pass any accurate analysis of the approach. I do note that there are very few search matches for ‘FEDC framework’. However, the Kickstarter project does try to explain the logic.
Want to read more? Pop over to Kickstarter and check out the campaign.