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Subject: Creating Atmosphere for Gaming Sessions rss

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Jacob Barber
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Austin
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One thing that I love to do when bringing games to the table is playing appropriate instrumental music to accompany the theme of the game. Usually I'll just grab a soundtrack from a game (or occasionally a film score) that I think will fit, but more recently I've even taken to assembling playlists to the game.

Plus, for some games I like to take it a step further. For example, when playing Betrayal at House on the Hill, I like to close up all the curtains and any necessary lighting while I play some spooky music.

I was just curious if other people like to bring some thematic atmosphere to their gaming sessions and what they do to do so?
 
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Garth Tams
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DeCaffinatedPlease wrote:
One thing that I love to do when bringing games to the table is playing appropriate instrumental music to accompany the theme of the game. Usually I'll just grab a soundtrack from a game (or occasionally a film score) that I think will fit, but more recently I've even taken to assembling playlists to the game.

Plus, for some games I like to take it a step further. For example, when playing Betrayal at House on the Hill, I like to close up all the curtains and any necessary lighting while I play some spooky music.

I was just curious if other people like to bring some thematic atmosphere to their gaming sessions and what they do to do so?


No. Not sure what music would bring the theme out of an 18xx game, if you can even find the theme of an 18xx game.
We prefer music to no music. As long as it is at a level of volume that is low enough that we can have normal conversation, and is not annoying in sound it is good enough for us.
 
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nat tact
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Indianapolis
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Beer + pretzels
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Bryan Thunkd
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Florence
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I like to run a gas generator in the room for a couple of minutes before playing CO2. I find that creates a thematic atmosphere.
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Jacob Barber
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Thunkd wrote:
I like to run a gas generator in the room for a couple of minutes before playing CO2. I find that creates a thematic atmosphere.


That's certainly taking it to the next level!
 
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Jonathan Challis
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Inkpen
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I definitely prefer no distracting music!
 
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Jacob Barber
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Kelanen wrote:
I definitely prefer no distracting music!


So does this mean none at all, or simply more unobtrusive tunes?
 
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Kyle
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We tend to enjoy dinner, chat, and enjoy a nice friendly atmosphere, rock station in the background optional.
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Pete
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Northbrook
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Earth's atmosphere works for me.

Pete (needs little encouragement to play games)
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Craig Fox
New Zealand
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I don't deliberately set out to create atmosphere for games, though I've been known to wait for miserable grey rainy days before playing Robinson Crusoe.
 
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bort
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Thunkd wrote:
I like to run a gas generator in the room for a couple of minutes before playing CO2. I find that creates a thematic atmosphere.


I can produce my own natural gas
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Paul Ferguson
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I would like to introduce slapping into games like 7 Wonders. At the end of the round, the players that have the least military, get slapped by their neighbors.
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Timothy Young
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We played Dracula last week simply because there was a thunder storm. So dort of the reverse of the question.

I always play suitable music for a game, plus ambient battle sounds for wargames. Love it, would be weird to play without.
 
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Mark B
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For regular game nights I don't, but when I invite people over for a specific thematic game, I do. For example, I had Star Wars music and Star Wars inspired snacks for a session of Imperial Assault. I also did a spooky game night with creepy music, thematic snacks. I even dressed as a ghost playing the ghost in mysterium.
 
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(ɹnʎʞ)
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DeCaffinatedPlease wrote:
One thing that I love to do when bringing games to the table is playing appropriate instrumental music to accompany the theme of the game. Usually I'll just grab a soundtrack from a game (or occasionally a film score) that I think will fit, but more recently I've even taken to assembling playlists to the game.

Plus, for some games I like to take it a step further. For example, when playing Betrayal at House on the Hill, I like to close up all the curtains and any necessary lighting while I play some spooky music.

I was just curious if other people like to bring some thematic atmosphere to their gaming sessions and what they do to do so?

I started sharing my playlists a while ago.

►Background music for board games
 
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Angry Augury
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I always have a thematically appropriate soundtrack playing in the background just to create more of a immersive experience.

I usually don't go too far beyond that but I surprised my group this past week when they came to play our first session of Letters from Whitechapel. You should have seen their faces when they arrived only to discover that I had murdered five prostitutes. That really got them into the theme as they started screaming, "Police! Help, there's been a murder!" Classic!



P.S. In case you couldn't tell, that was a joke. I only killed four prostitutes.
 
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Mark Helton
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darthain wrote:
We tend to enjoy dinner, chat, and enjoy a nice friendly atmosphere, rock station in the background optional.


Agreed.
Although we typically also have lots of choices for drinks, especially adult beverages.
The last couple of years we've been into trying various whiskeys (mostly Irish), but also some nice bourbons.

(We usually play in the dining room, and I have a rather nice stereo in the adjacent room, so we usually put on a CD, rather a radio station.
I have a nice turntable too, but that means getting up way too often to change sides, and I hate it when we forget and the stylus rides in the lead out groove for an hour!). shake
 
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John Prewitt
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I like to engage in necromantic cannibal rituals before playing Cave Evil. Then of course you gotta spin the tunes with Cave Evil Radio.

http://www.cave-evil.com/KVVL/

Then before Archipelago sometimes I'll go out and find some natives to exploit.

 
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Playing instrumental music to accompany theme???
Close up curtains & play spooky music???

Nope. Seriously not.
If it´s you and regular players you often play with and are used to do so. Ok.
If some of the players are not used to it, it might just feels plain out weird. Quite simnply because of the fact dosen´t feel it fits.

Turn the music/sound FX or whatever it is you do, off. Get out some snacks & cool drinks (non-alcoholic) and game on. Boardgames and alcohol is a seriously (could be) very bad combination. And the atmosphere and everything will turn on all naturally by itself.
 
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Mark Helton
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Rox4Games wrote:

Turn the music/sound FX or whatever it is you do, off. Get out some snacks & cool drinks (non-alcoholic) and game on. Boardgames and alcohol is a seriously (could be) very bad combination. And the atmosphere and everything will turn on all naturally by itself.


I don't know what kind of guys you've been playing boardgames with, but the guys I play boardgames with can handle their alcohol pretty well. We've never had a serious problem in the 40 years that I have been boardgaming. (We're not talking about playing boardgames with your typical "Jock" from high school, who party all night and go drag racing or cow-tippping!)

Of course it might help that we're all in our 40's to our 60's, so our cow-tipping days are pretty much over. (Although a good drag race can still be pretty fun!)
 
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Kyle
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markhelton wrote:
darthain wrote:
We tend to enjoy dinner, chat, and enjoy a nice friendly atmosphere, rock station in the background optional.


Agreed.
Although we typically also have lots of choices for drinks, especially adult beverages.
The last couple of years we've been into trying various whiskeys (mostly Irish), but also some nice bourbons.

(We usually play in the dining room, and I have a rather nice stereo in the adjacent room, so we usually put on a CD, rather a radio station.
I have a nice turntable too, but that means getting up way too often to change sides, and I hate it when we forget and the stylus rides in the lead out groove for an hour!). shake


My fridge is typically full of craft beer. For the sake of convenience I use a blue-tooth speaker set paired with my PC which holds my extensive CD library/an internet radio station.
 
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John Prewitt
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I don't mind beers on the table, unless I'm playing Kingdom Death. Then you put that shit on the side table!
 
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dave bcs
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College Station
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How about bringing in a wheelbarrow full of manure when you play Agricola?
 
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Lou Correia
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I have a playlist that I use for Space 1889. Yeah, it is a RPG but I could see application to some board games. The theme for one character is Rule Britannia, when the groups arch-nemesis appears I play The Black Pearl from Pirates of the Carribean, and when the Germans show up the background music is Deutschland uber alles. The Theme from Jaws really gets the adrenalin flowing. I have a number of other military marches that I play when Her Majesty's troops save the day. The theme from Das Boot works for both subs and deep space aether flyers.
 
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Shawn Harriman
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Lebanon
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Role playing D & D or Traveler would not be the same without Blue Oyster Cult Fire of Unknown Origin.




You're seeing now a veteran of a thousand psychic wars,
I've been living on the edge so long, where the winds of Limbo roar.
And I'm young enough to look at,
And far old to see, all the stars are on the inside.
I'm not sure that's there's anything left to me

 
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