219. Dungeons & Developers

August 17, 2021

Today we have a really fun episode in which we are joined by our friend Sophie Creutz to discuss the parallels between Dungeons & Dragons and the world of software development! There are clear links and common threads that seem to run between these two worlds and we start off this conversation considering why the game of D&D might immediately appeal to developers. A lot of this might have to do with rules and the concept of a journey or quest, but we also consider further counterparts from the two spaces. Sophie shares some of her deep knowledge from the role-playing game, and we even have time to think about the character attributes that make a good developer! So from product managers to DMs, to quests and careers, be sure to listen in as we explore what we as developers can learn from the amazing game of D&D!

Key Points From This Episode:

  • The connection between Dungeons & Dragons and the world of developers. 
  • How the rules of the game seem appealing to software developers.
  • The basics of Dungeons and Dragons, its gameplay, and setup.
  • Determining and creating characters, the rules, and choices that go into the process. 
  • The path of a career in development and how it aligns with character creation in D&D. 
  • Considering the attributes that make a good developer!  
  • Quests and motivation for software development and in the game of D&D.
  • The different kinds of campaigns from Dungeon's & Dragons and developing.
  • Final thoughts on the Dungeons & Developers theory! 


If you are a software developer or technology leader looking to stay on top of the latest news in the software development world, or just want to learn actionable tactics to improve your day-to-day job performance, this podcast is for you.

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Transcript for Episode 219. Dungeons & Developers


[0:00:01.9] MN: Hello and welcome to The Rabbit Hole, the definitive developer’s podcast. Living large in New York. I’m your host, Michael Nunez. Our co-host today —

[0:00:09.3] DA: Dave Anderson. 

[0:00:11.1] MN: Today, we’ll be talking about Dungeons & Developers.

[0:00:13.9] DA: Yeah, we got a special guest with us today too.

[0:00:17.4] MN: We have Sophie Creutz. Hey Sophie, how’s it going?

[0:00:20.2] SC: Hey, doing great, glad to be here, yeah.

[0:00:23.8] MN: Glad to have you, Sophie, tell us a little bit about yourself?

[0:00:27.5] SC: Yeah, I think in the context of talking about D&D, you know I’ve played a lot of RPG’s and I’m also a developer and I find that there is a relationship between this she thinks, that’s part of what I wanted to chat about with you all today.

[0:00:42.3] DA: Yeah, you know, D&D, it’s so big right now.

[0:00:45.2] SC: It is so big, it’s incredible, it is – 

[0:00:48.6] DA: It’s enormous. It’s like a [inaudible], it is a huge monstrosity.

[0:00:55.4] SC: Yeah, it’s definitely like ogre size or larger, I’m saying, yeah.

[0:01:01.8] DA: It’s kind of amazing and there’s an intersectionality of D&D and like social justice, which could be a whole other podcast.

[0:01:10.5] SC: There definitely is.

[0:01:12.8] DA: There is definitely a very long thread of D&D and developers and role-playing games and developers. Why do you think that is? What’s up with that?

[0:01:25.1] SC: Gosh, I mean, I think there’s a lot of potential reasons and in my mind, I’m curious to hear your perspective as well but for one thing, it’s got a lot of rules and regulations, right? There’s a ton of world-building in D&D, which is so intriguing and it gives the developer type something really to latch on to and explore.

[0:01:47.0] DA: Yeah, I love roles, I love errors too. I love it when the rules are broken and someone yells at me, it’s great.

[0:01:53.9] SC: Yes, then, that’s the other thing, right? It’s like, there is some flexibility with the rules in D&D. Sometimes it’s like, “No, I absolutely can’t break this rule,” right? These are my stats, I have rolled a die and I have added my modifier and it is less than the number that I need in order to hit this monster or whatever it is and that’s a pretty hard and fast rule.

[0:02:14.0] DA: Right, the numbers.

[0:02:15.3] MN: Yeah, the numbers, you kind of can’t argue with the numbers, although I’ve seen some parties and situations where those conversations occur. It sounds like you know what I’m talking about, Dave.

[0:02:27.6] DA: Yeah, you know, math.

[0:02:31.9] MN: I might be the resident person who has never played D&D before. I think I played other role-playing games predominantly through council and computer games. When you roll the dice, how many faces are in the die?

[0:02:49.1] DA: Depends, sometimes 20, sometimes 10, sometimes – 

[0:02:51.9] MN: It depends? 

[0:02:53.6] DA: Look at these beautiful dice, they’re all great.

[0:02:56.9] MN: Wow, how many, that was like 20. If you roll a high number.

[0:03:00.5] SC: That’s gorgeous, look at that.

[0:03:03.3] MN: On the…

[0:03:04.5] SC: I’m nerding out about these dice, I’m sorry. Mike, go ahead.

[0:03:10.0] MN: If you roll a high number that’s like a critical hit or like a critical chance to do the thing that you were –

[0:03:14.0] SC: It can be, for instance, on a D20 which is a D-sided die, if you rolled it and it was a 20, that would be a critical hit. If you rolled it and it was a one, that would be a critical failure.

[0:03:26.5] MN: Critical failure, wow, okay.

[0:03:28.4] SC: Yeah.

[0:03:29.6] MN: It’s like, I went to go attack the monster and the critical failure would be, “I cut my foot off.” There you go.

[0:03:35.1] SC: Well, yes, it could be and that’s up to the players, not the DM to decide what that is, right? It’s like if you have a critical failure, what does that mean? Do you fall on your face, do you try and throw your axe at the baddie, and instead it circles back around like – what are those things called? That comes back to you? Boomerangs.

[0:03:52.1] DA: Boomerangs.

[0:03:55.1] MN: I guess people are constantly rolling a one in my software engineering and I’m just constantly critical failure —

[0:04:01.8] DA: TDD’ing, just rolling ones over here.

[0:04:03.8] MN: Writing this test, oops, I dropped production database, that’s just kind of what – 

[0:04:08.0] DA: Oops.

[0:04:09.0] SC: There’s a critical failure, yeah.

[0:04:11.9] DA: I mean, the aspect will have like determining the outcome together as a group. I think that’s another thing that kind of – to me, in my experience as a developer, really appeals to me in both D&D and in software development because we determine what the product is together as a team. We work together and figure it out, through some level of improvisation and systems and rules we define.

[0:04:41.2] SC: Yeah, you determine also how are we going to solve this problem, we talk about the problem, we talk about potential solutions to the problem, and thus, you move the needle forward, right? On completing the product or whatever it is and in the game, you move the story forward, ideally.

[0:04:57.0] DA: Yeah. How do you create a character in D&D?

[0:05:03.3] SC: You make a lot of choices, you make a lot of choices and you roll some dice.

[0:05:11.1] MN: There are different classes, right? I know that – what is it? I’ve seen paladin, the word paladin being used, I think Dave refer to me as the BX paladin of the podcast earlier in life.

[0:05:23.2] DA: The Bronx paladin.

[0:05:24.0] MN: Yeah, Bronx paladin and I was like well, I guess I probably could cast spells with the big sword, who knows?

[0:05:30.6] DA: Yeah, a high charisma, just using your convictions to get through.

[0:05:35.8] MN: Exactly. I thought that would be more of a bard, probably but I can’t sing for beans, but I probably would do that.

[0:05:42.6] DA: Okay, bard, I can see that.

[0:05:46.0] MN: How do you determine your characters, what your character’s going to be in D&D? There are rules for that too, right?

[0:05:51.6] SC: There’s a couple of things, it sort of like, if you have an idea in your mind ahead of time, at least, this is part of how I think about it, you know? What kind of character do I want to play? Do I want to be engaged in combat all the time or do I want to be using spells? Which I personally find a little bit more interesting because you can get creative with the application of the spells and there are so many spells too, there’s a ton of this lore, there’s a ton of stuff that’s like cannon, that you can use and explore so you could use that too, and then you can think about backstory as well if you want to get real fancy, right?

[0:06:26.2] DA: Yeah.

[0:06:26.6] SC: What’s my back story, what’s my motivation?

[0:06:29.8] DA: If we’re going to, for example like some class and skills for a second, I feel like that’s a great – you were talking about all these different paths that you can kind of invest your time in or that you can try out and I feel like that’s always developers like, journey with career development to – there’s that really great tech tree that you showed me, Mike.

[0:06:56.8] MN: Yeah, it’s actually – we named the episode after – if you go to dungeonsanddevelopers.com, you’ll see that there is a talent tree. It looks very similar to what I would be familiar with WOW and you start at the top, right? I mean, the top has HTML, that is an introduction to a frontend talent tree but then you could go off the side and be like, “No, I want to be a server DBA.” Or, “I want to be proficient in user discovery.” And then it goes down to these different talent trees. I think you create your own story in choosing the talent tree that prefers to you I imagine very similar to the kind of character you want to play in Dungeons & Dragons.

[0:07:36.3] SC: Yeah, I like that, it’s like, what’s my motivation, how do I get there and what skills do I need?

[0:07:42.1] DA: Yeah. I love the concept of the alignment charts, the idea of good versus evil, lawful versus chaotic. Where like, there’s some – I think as a consultant, there’s always some kind of a quadrant chart in your back pocket where you’re trying to categorize things here or there. Although, these kinds of alignments have their own problematic nature to them. It’s just like fun to categorize things and there’s a lot of funny memes around that too.

[0:08:15.8] SC: There are some great ones, yeah. I think it’s intriguing when people – see when you think about how do I place a character that I may know into one of these categories and of course, that’s kind of the point, right? They’re supposed to be inspirations for characters, so for instance, chaotic good, the classic example that I hear there a lot of the time is like think about Robin Hood, right? Because Robin Hood steals from the rich and gives to the poor so it’s chaotic because it’s not existing within society’s rules and expectations, like the rule of law that exists in that context of Sherwood Forest. Yeah, but stealing from the rich and giving to the poor, like helping people who are in need. 

[0:08:59.8] DA: Or the tech equivalent of that being [inaudible 0:09:03.4] where you’re just creating an open-source operating system and being chaotic in that sense and you’re like introducing some craziness into the system and maybe being a jerk sometimes on forums but the net betterment of humanity.

[0:09:22.2] SC: For the larger good, yes.

[0:09:24.7] DA: Yeah, exactly.

[0:09:26.7] MN: Yeah, I had first seen the chart very recently and I didn’t know that it was pertaining to characters, I thought it was behaviors. My chaotic evil behavior that I had at that particular quadrant are individuals who have a shorter alias for git push-f and I thought that that was the craziest thing that anyone can do about it. Absolutely chaotic evil. I remember being – 

[0:09:55.6] DA: Their alias for git push-f is just git push.

[0:09:59.7] MN: No, not even. Yeah or it’s like GGF, we’ll just have GF and then boom, it just does that for you. I remember filling out this chart and Dave is like, “What are you doing? This makes no sense.”

[0:10:12.9] DA: No, that makes perfect sense, that is chaotic evil, yeah.

[0:10:16.4] MN: That is chaotic evil.

[0:10:17.8] DA: Maybe they go onto your computer and they setup that alias for you.

[0:10:22.3] SC: Wow.

[0:10:23.7] MN: They setup git push to be git push-f on your machine, that’s crazy.

[0:10:30.2] SC: Without you knowing.

[0:10:30.3] MN: Yeah, lock your machines people, don’t trust that person. That person is evil in the worst way.

[0:10:38.2] DA: I joke, but I have seen this happen to people where I think it was like someone changed CD. CD to be something else, like an alias and that was like – I think that was on the evil side of things.

[0:10:51.8] MN: Don’t be chaotic evil, people, that’s not fun.

[0:10:55.6] SC: Well see, now I’m trying to think about how would you accomplish that as a character, right? Would you use mage hand, would you – 

[0:11:04.5] MN: I mean, it’s definitely stealth and sleight of hand.

[0:11:07.0] SC: That’s it.

[0:11:08.7] MN: Yeah, breaking all the rules.

[0:11:10.1] SC: It’s stealth roll, yes.

[0:11:13.2] DA: Pass without trace, baby.

[0:11:15.0] SC: There you go. Yeah.

[0:11:17.4] DA: I love this IT alignment chart too, there’s this one here for neutral and evil where they may or may not fix your issues since obviously the real problem, here, the real problem here is you and not your computer.

[0:11:33.7] MN: There you go.

[0:11:34.7] DA: I feel like I’ve been there, and maybe I’m all of these things.

[0:11:38.5] SC: User error, yeah.

[0:11:41.6] MN: We are all of those things.

[0:11:42.2] SC: At one point or another, I’m sure, yeah, we’ve passed through all of these alignments.

[0:11:47.0] DA: Yeah, it’s like not fixed, but over time.

[0:11:51.9] SC: Well, actually, that might be why some DMs refuse to use alignments because they don’t like the idea that a character’s personality and behavior will be quite so fixed to one category.

[0:12:04.5] DA: Yeah, that’s true. Even when I was trying to think about what – how you might cast this into a day-to-day team of developers like how would you align them good or evil, lawful or chaotic where it’s like, maybe good is like more team-focused versus individual-focused but or process versus like – just cowboying. But you know, you’re not going to do that all the time.

[0:12:32.2] SC: Well, we could talk about this forever but it’s kind of like the chaotic versus lawful dichotomy here. I might think of that as if you’re lawful, you are following this [inaudible] process, you are doing all of the Agile ceremonies.

[0:12:50.1] DA: You’re on time for stand up.

[0:12:51.4] MN: Yeah.

[0:12:52.2] SC: Right, yeah. You're on time for stand up, you give your update, all that good stuff, and then the chaotic is more like, I don’t know, waterfall?

[0:13:07.1] DA: I mean, I think chaotic is just like logging into the production server and changing the code on the box or you know?

[0:13:17.7] MN: Update attributes, right on prod DP bro.

[0:13:20.1] SC: Pushing to master, yeah.

[0:13:24.2] MN: I have a question, what, as a developer, what attributes do you think are most important? Is it intelligence? Is it dexterity, do you need strength – what are your thoughts on that?

[0:13:36.9] SC: Like actual physical strength?

[0:13:39.2] MN: Sometimes you need constitution, you got to be like, have some fortitude to get by.

[0:13:44.8] SC: Ain’t that the truth, yeah.

[0:13:48.0] DA: To wake up at 7 AM. 

[0:13:52.0] MN: What about dexterity? Can you be fast, I guess on the fingers, you don’t have to type.

[0:13:56.5] SC: Typing, you got to type fast, yeah.

[0:13:58.6] MN: You don’t have to but it’s good if you did.

[0:14:03.6] DA: I mean, dexterity, being accuracy on the keys, I feel like that’s something that I try to practice that. Although, it’s interesting also to be like, this is – it’s kind of assigned to something that’s innate to you. Which is again, interesting and controversial thing about this game as well that your dexterity is fixed but I know that if I go and play Type Racer for two hours, then I am going to be really solid on my typing and I could probably do a pushup or a plank and increase my strength. You know, I haven’t tested this theory yet but —

[0:14:43.8] SC: I guess to play devil’s advocate, I would say that actually your dexterity is not entirely fixed. It is fixed for a certain period of time but when you level up, it will change. It will get higher and then there’s other things that might affect your dexterity too like maybe you have a spell that gives you an increased bonus to your dexterity or maybe you actually have some kind of luck that increases them onto your dexterity. 

There is things that can happen, you know that’s where the creativity piece comes in on the part of the [inaudible] of players to think about what is the real-world scenario and then how can I translate that into game mechanics. 

[0:15:21.7] MN: But increasing dexterity by a spell as a developer, is that like coffee at that point? 

[0:15:29.7] SC: It’s a big coffee. 

[0:15:30.5] MN: When you drink coffee you get plus five dex, is that? 

[0:15:34.4] DA: Equal off that potion. 

[0:15:35.7] MN: You got – yeah that intelligence I imagine it’s like, well, wisdom is like the knowledge of I guess software engineering practice. 

[0:15:44.8] SC: It might equate to experience. 

[0:15:47.3] DA: Right. Yeah, exactly. 

[0:15:48.6] MN: Then intelligence is like being able to apply the thing that you do know, the wisdom to the piece of software that you’re building. 

[0:15:57.4] DA: Right, I feel like I definitely feel some wisdom when I’m working on a codebase that I know and I have an intuition where it’s like, “I think if I were this file, I would be in this folder,” and then you just open that folder and it’s like, “Oh there it is.” 

[0:16:14.0] SC: There it is. 

[0:16:14.6] MN: There it is. 

[0:16:15.6] DA: What’s up? 

[0:16:17.7] MN: Then charisma I guess you might need it to be able to talk through the story to your project manager. 

[0:16:24.9] SC: Talk to stakeholders, yeah you need it. 

[0:16:26.5] MN: Talk to stakeholders, you got to woo them over and make sure that they love the feature. 

[0:16:31.2] DA: Persuasion. 

[0:16:32.3] SC: There is a persuasion stat, exactly. 

[0:16:36.4] DA: Maybe deception if you’re like, “Oh yeah, this is going fine.” Which is not – that is not an agile thing. You should always be raising blockers and you know, shining a light on things that are going wrong. 

[0:16:52.5] MN: It’s like, people, people, people, it’s a feature not a bug, okay? Let’s just leave it as it is. 

[0:16:58.4] SC: That’s when you pull out the press [inaudible]. 

[0:17:05.0] DA: Right. 

[0:17:05.7] SC: Which is like, it is supposed to be a sleight of hand on that kind of things so if you just do the demo in a certain way using your sleight of hand, then you can highlight the quirks of —

[0:17:15.7] DA: Right, it’s like – what was that guy’s name? Like Rick Angel? He’s doing the demo or Chris Angel? Is it Chris Angel? Yeah, you know? 

[0:17:25.6] MN: The magician? 

[0:17:26.0] DA: The magician, yeah. 

[0:17:27.0] MN: Oh man, that guy. 

[0:17:28.7] SC: Okay, yeah. 

[0:17:29.5] DA: At the sleight of hand. 

[0:17:30.7] MN: The sleight of hand, good old sleight of hand. 

[0:17:34.7] SC: I have not seen Chris Angel but I know for us [inaudible 0:17:37.7] is more like, “Can you make a rabbit appear out of a hat or can you change colors?”

[0:17:43.7] MN: I remember seeing Chris Angel a lot, I don’t know, probably in the early 2000s when he would walk on a pool. He was like a Vegas magician. He is like David Blaine’s rival I guess. He would do also just stuff like that. 

[0:17:57.6] DA: Yeah, he just looks vaguely like a vampire. 

[0:18:01.3] MN: Yeah and he pulls rabbits out of a hat and walks on water but it’s like a pool and what else did he do? He did stuff like that, which is pretty mystical I guess if that’s the word. Magical.

[0:18:13.8] SC: Magical, what a profession. 

[0:18:19.1] MN: We talked about stats and alignment charts. I think we got our characters set, our developers ready. We now have a party, right? Which is usually like your dev team. 

[0:18:30.9] DA: Call my character sheet. 

[0:18:32.1] SC: You have your dev team spreadsheets also though. 

[0:18:33.9] MN: You have the sheet ready to go, you got your party, let’s talk about quests and motivation, in software development and in D&D. 

[0:18:42.2] SC: Yeah, so now we’re going to go on a quest. 

[0:18:44.5] DA: Right, you got an even motley crew like all these people with different backgrounds and flaws and ideals. They are coming together and they have to accomplish something. 

[0:18:56.2] SC: They have to accomplish something and they don’t even necessarily know what it is, they have to discover what it is at least in the context of D&D. 

[0:19:03.0] DA: Right, they just start in a tavern and you know – 

[0:19:05.9] SC: Always a tavern, yeah. 

[0:19:08.3] DA: If things don’t end well, they may just stay in the tavern forever. 

[0:19:11.3] SC: They might be in that tavern for a while if they can’t get it off the ground, yeah. 

[0:19:16.1] DA: Right, which is too real but our characters have ideally, if you are making a character in this fantasy adventure world, your character has a desire for adventure and going out in the world. 

[0:19:30.3] SC: Yes and to move this story forward, which is kind of the key and that’s the DM's goal as well is to move the story forward, get the players to go through the adventure.

[0:19:40.1] DA: I feel like my product manager might be my DM. 

[0:19:44.4] MN: They might, he or she might be, right? Because they are the ones giving you the quest that you need to partake in. 

[0:19:52.0] DA: Right, you’re kind of foreshadowing the vision, the product vision. They’re like, “Oh, this is the promised land. We need to get here.” There is actually this great retro format that I’ve seen that I’ve never done. I feel like I need the right group of nerdy developers to do this with but there is like a variant of the sailboat retro format, which we’ve talked about I think previously on the podcast where it’s like a future-spective where you’re looking forward towards your teams' goals and your mission and whatnot but it’s framed as like the hero’s journey instead. 

Instead of things in the sailboat where it’s wind at your back, you instead have like a mentor or someone assisting you as compared to the hero’s journey in the famous book by Campbell, you have your guide and instead of having your island that you are trying to get to, you have your treasure, which is buried in a cavern filled with perils. And so all of those things are different areas that you can imagine like, “Okay, these are the things that our guides along the way. These are the treasures, the vision that we’re trying to get to and these are the perils that we’re trying to get around.” 

[0:21:17.5] MN: There is a ceremony, I don’t know if it is called the future-spective, right? But it is like the objective, the risk, the reward and this looks very similar to that that I’ve seen. I don’t remember the name of it exactly but I do like the idea that changing into the hero – 

[0:21:32.9] DA: Right, it’s like SWOT or something? 

[0:21:35.2] MN: Yes, like the SWOT, yes. Strength, weakness, I forget the other two. 

[0:21:41.1] DA: Opportunities and threats. 

[0:21:43.4] MN: There you go, this guy swots. 

[0:21:46.1] DA: SWOTs. 

[0:21:47.0] MN: This guy swots but I like the hero journey, yeah it’s pretty cool. I mean, I like the description of it as well, the idea that you can switch it up and make it a little bit more fun and fantasy related for some treasure, and having it separated from here makes the thing that you’re working on like a game but then we’re applying it to real-world examples like you know, whether we are building out this brand new feature or you know, introducing a third-party library to make sure that we get the treasure at the end and the success that we get from it. 

[0:22:22.0] SC: Yeah. 

[0:22:22.3] MN: I need to run a future-spective like this in the future hopefully, this is pretty fun.

[0:22:27.2] SC: Yeah. Well, I think there is a couple of parallels here too to the world of D&D, where you have – there is the adventure itself which someone has to write and then there is the DM who has to deliver the adventure, so there is all these sort of minds that have to come into the equation and if the DM is doing a good job of delivering the story and leading the players through, what’s going to happen is you’re going to have sort of like hints that are dropped, right? 

In terms of where do I go next, who I ask the question to next, how do I advance this story, and if you don’t get hints that the party can latch on to, it’s almost like, you know, you haven’t refined your AC or something like that. We don’t know where to go here, we don’t know who to ask, we don’t actually know what we’re doing but then the DM will be like, “And so you see in the corner of the tavern a park’s ranger with a hood and a pipe and they seemed to be looking at you,” and then – 

[0:23:24.4] DA: Right, is that a user? Do they know? Do they have a story for me? Some acceptance criteria? 

[0:23:32.4] MN: That’s great, yeah. 

[0:23:35.9] SC: Yeah. 

[0:23:37.7] MN: Yeah, they just offer you — they offer you a story that, “Hey, there’s a bug that I’ve seen.” 

[0:23:43.4] SC: There is. I hear a call, it’s in the mountains. 

[0:23:45.9] DA: It’s the most heinous bug. A time bug. I heard – 

[0:23:52.4] MN: I had enough from these lands. 

[0:23:54.1] SC: Oh no. 

[0:23:54.7] DA: I’ve heard you are – I have been taught by the time lord himself. 

[0:23:58.0] SC: Oh my goodness. See now, you are mixing fandoms here and I admit that I have in fact googled how do you time travel in D&D and I think the first result that I got was, "You don’t." 

[0:24:12.2] DA: Oh no, no, no, you can do it. Anything is possible in your brain. It’s all in our brain. 

[0:24:18.6] MN: I think it all – well, it’s up to the dungeon master or the — 

[0:24:22.6] SC: And the imagination, yeah. 

[0:24:23.8] MN: Between the DM or the project manager, they’re the ones who are in the realm of – 

[0:24:28.4] SC: Well, that’s the thing. Yeah, they get the right to veto, yeah. You know, I’ve had DMs and project managers who said, “No, that’s not going to fly.” 

[0:24:37.8] DA: Wait, blink tags? The users don’t want blink tags anymore? Dang, oh man. 

[0:24:46.6] MN: I mean there is some similarities. I mean, I might have to get myself into one of – one you know, like campaign, right? That’s like when you are in a journey, I mean like actual D&D. I’m in my own campaign right now on my software team but I mean in terms of D&D, a campaign is the group of people in which you go exploring. 

[0:25:05.6] SC: It’s a group of people and the adventure that you’re on as well. 

[0:25:09.2] MN: Okay, right and that campaign can be weeks, months, years if I recall correctly. 

[0:25:16.7] SC: Yeah, it could be or it could be a one-shot, which is like, “We’re going to do this on one sitting and we’re going to play D&D for seven hours straight and we’re going to love it.” 

[0:25:24.9] DA: We are locking the door until we get through it. I feel like this outline has been a campaign and we lock the doors and we stretch the metaphor until it reached its full potential. 

[0:25:39.5] SC: Yes, until it snaps, yeah. I mean, I guess classically, we’re going to get some Mountain Dew and Cheetos in here. 

[0:25:48.7] DA: Oh man, this is breakfast time though. 

[0:25:51.7] SC: Right. 

[0:25:54.1] MN: Coffee and Cheetos baby, that’s what you got to do. 

[0:25:57.0] DA: Saying that we’re playing, we’re cooking with fire. 

[0:25:58.9] MN: Yeah, I guess a one-day campaign is similar to that of like a hackathon, right? Where it’s just like you and your group of people and trying to – 

[0:26:05.3] DA: Yeah but a hackathon is like a one-shot, yeah. 

[0:26:07.0] MN: Yeah, it’s like a one-shot and then your lengthy campaign is the application you’ve been supporting for months or even years now. 

[0:26:16.1] DA: Yeah, totally. Okay, so what are our final deep thoughts about this metaphor? The dungeons and the developers really. 

[0:26:25.2] MN: My project manager is my DM. He controls everything that I am able to do and will put a stop to anything to my – that I am trying to do some chaotic good in the mix of things. 

[0:26:39.0] DA: No but it should be a conversation, you know? Sometimes you got to get some kick good in there and that’s like some spice, in the team. 

[0:26:47.0] MN: Yeah, I got to persuade him. I got to use my charisma for that for sure. 

[0:26:51.7] SC: Well, I guess you know, at a more serious like kind of approach to this, right? When you are building a party in D&D, you have to think about what are my skills as a character? How did I build this character that I contribute to the party and how did everyone else as well? These skills will complement each other and how do we use that to move the story forward and I think obviously that does apply to being on a dev team as well, right? 

How do our skills complement each other, how can we accomplish our goals with this regard? How do we discover what these goals are? Et cetera. 

[0:27:22.7] DA: How do our backgrounds and flaws and ideals kind of mesh? Knowing that everyone is very different is kind of empowering and I feel like D&D is a good way to exercise that empathy and like that teamwork kind of skill. In the ideal sense, if your game is being run in a collaborative way. It could be a good team-building thing. Maybe you can get together and roll some D20s? 

[0:27:50.8] SC: I absolutely agree. I think every team should play D&D together. I stand behind this a hundred percent. 

[0:27:58.0] DA: Yeah, okay. Everyone has their homework, go roll a D20. 

[0:28:02.5] MN: There you go.

[0:28:03.3] DA: See what happens. 

[0:28:04.0] MN: Just get yourself a D20 dye and start rolling. 


[0:28:07.8] MN: Follow us now on Twitter @radiofreerabbit so we can keep the conversation going. Like what you hear? Give us a five star review and help developers like you find their way into The Rabbit Hole and never miss an episode, subscribe now however you listen to your favorite podcast. On behalf of our producer extraordinaire, William Jeffries and my amazing co-host, Dave Anderson and me, your host, Michael Nunez, thanks for listening to The Rabbit Hole.


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