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Movie Impressions – The Gamers: Dorkness Rising

April 11, 2010

I had the pleasure of watching The Gamers: Dorkness Rising this weekend. It’s low-budget and somewhat campy, but it places a nice portrayal of a small group of tabletop RPG gamers as they go through their friend’s campaign.

Now, I suck at writing synopses, so here’s the best I can do at the time: Lodge is a Game Master who’s trying to write a new module for Dungeons and Dragons, but while he knows how he wants his story to end, he’s got a severe case of writer’s block with everything else. The movie is essentially him and his friends playing the module he’s created, with the beginning actually being the end of their failed second attempt. One of them recruits his ex-girlfriend to become a fourth player while Lodge himself creates an NPC fifth character to get the ball rolling. The rest of the movie chronicles the group’s exploits and out-of-game interactions as they try to find and defeat the necromancer Mort Kemnon, who holds the fabled Mask of Death.

The party composition is interesting, as this main game they’re playing has Lodge’s male friends playing a female sorcerer, a bardic death magnet, and a medieval western monk, with the token female member of the gaming party playing a high dex, high intellgence fighter with low hitpoints.

Anyway, I’m not sure what else to add to this, other than the fact that it’s funny, it has references to pirates fighting ninjas, it has a nod to Gary Gygax, and at one point in the story they use the piled corpses of the bard’s previous deaths as a barrier to allow the sorcerer to cast a spell at a more powerful demonic enemy.

Not bad, in my estimation, as a geek’s movie, but it could have been vastly improved with the use of fewer lens flare effects.


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