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Subject: How do YOU respond? The Dreaded What are You Playing Topic by a Non Gamer rss

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Brian Schwartz
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Holbrook
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The following conversation took place today with someone I was casually chatting with online:

Me: What are you doing tonight?
Him: Oh, just cleaning
Me: I'm having friends over to play games
Him: Oh cool! I love board games! What games are you playing?

At this point, how do you respond? Do you:

A) Say "Probably nothing you've heard of.." (Which is kind of conscending?)
B) Try to explain the modern board gaming hobby
C) Tell them what you actually are playing

From C, how do you respond when they say "Oh, I dont' know that game.."


Just curious! This comes up a LOT!
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Starla Lester
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I view the question as an opportunity rather than "dreaded." I don't mean that to sound as though I think you are wrong, it's only that I think the perception makes all the difference.

So, I would tell them what we are actually playing, and if they show more interest I would describe the game in glowing terms, explaining why it is so much fun.

I have many, many good gaming buddies who started out attending our board game meetup group knowing nothing more than Catan, or Risk, or Monopoly. Once they saw how amazing modern board games are, there was no stopping them.
:-)
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Josh
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C normally. I'm always about being inclusive. The hobby does not expand without openness. I'll toss out the idea in case they might know the name, but likely they won't. I'll gladly tell them about the game, and if they sound interested expand into the explanation of the hobby. It's much easier to do in person than online though.
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Ladson
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WittyreaderLI wrote:
The following conversation took place today with someone I was casually chatting with online:

Me: What are you doing tonight?
Him: Oh, just cleaning
Me: I'm having friends over to play games
Him: Oh cool! I love board games! What games are you playing?

At this point, how do you respond? Do you:

A) Say "Probably nothing you've heard of.." (Which is kind of conscending?)
B) Try to explain the modern board gaming hobby
C) Tell them what you actually are playing

From C, how do you respond when they say "Oh, I dont' know that game.."


Just curious! This comes up a LOT!


C. No need to apologize for or spin-doctor a perfectly reasonable hobby. At most, by way of description I might say that they are the kind of games you would find in the strategy-game section of Barnes & Noble.
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Luke Morris
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I'd go for C but not over-complicate things. Consider it a way to sell your hobby within the length of a Twitter Tweet or text message.

"What game are you playing?"

"Small World. It's a bit like Risk but you take control of different fantasy creatures with different abilities."

"Roll Through The Ages. It's a bit like Yahtzee but you're building up a civilisation, feeding your people and building monuments to win."

"Agricola. You're all farmers building up your farm with these little wooden pigs and sheep. I find it tricky but rewarding."

"Dominant Species. You're all different kinds of animals trying to be the strongest species before the Ice Age arrives."


The art is not over-complicating or blinding them with hobby-specific words. Don't make people seem small or stupid just because they don't have the same interest in YOUR chosen hobby.
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Christian Gienger
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B to C:

It's strategic board games, like Settler of Catan, just more complex.

Living in Germany has the advantage that probably everyone has played settlers
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Louis Brenton
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I normally go with C. I do it as briefly as possible but with lots of enthusiasm. If I can cause just .5% of my level of passion & interest in this hobby to rub off on someone, they'll be sucked in & trapped in it for life. Like me...
 
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Jared
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Just tell them the game name (C), and if they've never heard of it (A) they'll say so and probably ask about it, then you can describe/explain it to them (B).
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Ian Taylor
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I'll go with C, unless it's someone who I know from experience won't respond positively, in which case I'll go with A.
 
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Lynette
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C - with link to its BGG page
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bort
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C?

And if they say they've never heard of it, I tell them about it

Not sure what the problem is here

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Mark Nicosia
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D) Cleaning? WTF?!?! Get your butt over here and play some games!
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John Farrell
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I don't talk to non-gamers. Problem solved.
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Justin Passick
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Can't say as I see a dreaded part to the question. I've give em a straight honest answer maybe with a lil explanation and invite em over if they want.
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Enrico Viglino
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C - and I probably would just invite them to play.


If it's more than 4 hours or so, I'd give more warning.
Any questions they have, I'd answer.
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Pete
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A - "Probably nothing you've ever heard of."

For me this conversation usually ends when someone says "oh, so it's kind of like a poker night." That gives me the opportunity to say yes and get out of it.

Socially, it's pretty similar. Functionally, of course, not even close.

Pete (has played poker on game night though)
 
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C.

I do this all the time...it is the first step, opens their eyes, to getting people to break out of the traditional big 5 boardgames. ...is it 5? I just made that up.
 
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Richard Poole
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C. And reply to the follow up with "It's about war/politics/some other one word descriptor". If I have a handy comparison that I know they'll get, then I may ad "it's like monopoly/bridge/Risk/whatever".

No need to overexplain. If they care, they'll ask more.
 
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Iori Yagami
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Come on, it is not even a problem, a friendly chat.
NOW, how do you respond to someone in the room who doesn't play, sits and watches and chuckles quietly, and after the night says something like: "That was so hilarious I almost pi$$ed my pants - grown up bearded guys behind a table throwing kiddie cards and colourful cubes around mumbling about some fantasy BS, knights and kings or whatever. No way I'd ever do that, but thanks for offer anyway! giggle giggle giggle"
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Dr. Octatrack
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"It's called ______, you'd like it. Come round, the cleaning can wait."
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Thomas Lang
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calandale wrote:
C - and I probably would just invite them to play.


If it's more than 4 hours or so, I'd give more warning.
Any questions they have, I'd answer.


Wait... wha...? You play with people, too?
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bort
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Friendless wrote:
I don't talk to non-gamers.


You barely talk to gamers!
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Jeffrey Drozek-Fitzwater
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Friendless wrote:
I don't talk to non-gamers. Problem solved.


What, do you not have any- oh. Never mind.
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Sukunai Yori
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Hardly dreaded. I spend most of my social time trying to make more gamers not fewer.

You never find anything you are not looking for.

I like to think my voice might be part of the reason wargaming has invaded tablets and Steam.

I've been the driving force in more than a few gaming groups in my past.
 
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Enrico Viglino
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Junkfoot wrote:
calandale wrote:
C - and I probably would just invite them to play.


If it's more than 4 hours or so, I'd give more warning.
Any questions they have, I'd answer.


Wait... wha...? You play with people, too?


I just gamed with a group yesterday. I don't feel comfortable enough
with them to really enjoy (unlike some of the groups I played with
at CSWE), but every year or so I give it a shot.
 
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