Photo by: Charlie Marint
Starting at 5 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 17, the Brock Westmarches will host a 24-hour Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) charity livestream.
The Westmarches, Brock’s official D&D club, have held events like this for the past six years. This year, they have partnered with Extralife — a fundraising program of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals — to raise donations for McMaster Children’s Hospital. Those watching the livestream can donate both to influence the game and to reach donation milestones, forcing a player to do something like eat spicy food or watch the entire Twilight saga in a single sitting.
The livestream will consist of multiple D&D games, each taking between three to four hours. They are currently aiming to have five or six players per game, though they are willing to host larger sessions should there be a lot of interest.
Jack Campbell, a fourth-year concurrent education student and Brock Westmarches vice-president, described how the games are relatively short for D&D, and thus tend to lean more towards comedy.
“We typically run the event by selecting a pre-made module and then everyone who signs up creates a new character for the livestream,” he said. “These are one-off characters and often are quite funny; last year, we had a session consisting entirely of characters named Fred.”
He also clarified that while the players will be assigned to specific time slots, many of the Game Masters (GM) facilitating the games will be present the entire broadcast.
“While there is a rotation of players,” he said. “Many of the GMs — myself included — will be up for the majority of the time in order to keep the tech running, moderate the virtual chat and ensure all donations are called.”
Campbell then commented on the challenges of holding an event like this following two years of digital-only events.
“This year marks the first year that we have been able to host this in-person since COVID has begun,” he said. “While there have been bumps, every year we’ve been able to churn out a livestream with unforgettable moments and extremely fun times. This year proves a struggle primarily with the active members in the club. We are coming out of the time where it was hard to participate, and the idea of playing D&D virtually can be intimidating.”
He went on to describe how this event represents a return to form for the Westmarches.
“While the past two years provided unique benefits, they didn’t quite match the experience of playing in-person,” he said. “This event is important not only for the club, but also for the organizers to show that we are still capable of running amazing events in-person, and that we can have fun while raising money for charity like past years.”
The Brock Westmarches are currently accepting applicants to participate via their Discord server, and will be streaming both from the Extralife site and their Twitch page.