Inspired by Myst and No Man’s Sky, I came up with a really cool open-ended prompt for the pre-bedtime group discussion: if you had absolute creative control over designing a planet, what are some of the features would it have?
I gave them a full minute to silently think about it before answering. One camper went into elaborate detail about the binary star system his planet would orbit, the particular physics of its many moons, and the breadth and variety of cultures that work develop in its different ecological zones. Another described a planet like Waterworld, upon which several different species of marine animals had developed higher intelligence and built underwater cities. One kid wanted a planet made entirely out of gummy candies and kittens, and gummy candy kittens. Everybody listened to and fed off of each other’s answers - it was extremely successful and they were all eager to keep discussing it even when I declared that it was lights out.
Not so for Nosferatu. His imaginary planet? “It would be exactly the same as this one, except I would be the supreme ruler and anyone who disagreed with me, I could send to a dungeon in the center of the planet until their families forgot about them. The end.” He later added that his planet would also have an island populated by dinosaurs, and anyone banished there would have to survive their attacks.