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Subject: Game Groups... How are they started? rss

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Garcian Smith
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I've tried gaming with my friends, but some don't like it, some are hard to meet and others are assholes.

I'm in college as of now and I'm thinking about starting a game club, but it would be hard if it was just myself.

I see people play in card stores, card games such as wow tcg, magic and naruto, but starting a board game club... I don't know how to go about that...

So that's why I've tapped into other hobbies: WoW, paintball, etc...
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Erin Leonhard
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- Put up a note in your local game store with your phone number or email address

- Post here on the Geek, under Game Groups

- Approach your college about starting a game club on campus and/or post a note on campus

- Post on your local Craigslist
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Philip Thomas
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Well, first I would have a look around to see if there is a college game group already formed- you might get lucky.

If there isn't a college game group you want to find out the rules for founding clubs at your college, if there are any- if you can get some vaguely official status, even just an entry on a noticeboard that will help.

Then you need a regular time and place- again your college may have room booking facilties, otherwise you may need to be more creative. Once you have that set you you can start advertising- posters, over the college intranet, word-of-mouth. There are bound to be gamers there.

I ran a game club at high school. I took it over from a guy in the top year when I was in my first year. At the start of my second year, I was the only member. But I managed to build it up fairly quickly into half a dozen stalwarts or so, so take heart!

P.S What is the name of your college? There might be some people using this website who are there, so you should put up a thread here on that.
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Kevin Warrender
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Well, the 2 ways I would think to it if I were in college would be:

1) Talk to someone in your Student Affairs department about starting a club. Essentially you'd just be looking for room space to meet and the permission to post fliers, but someone there should be able to help you get the club registered with the school (assuming the school has official clubs).

2) Talk to someone in the card game store. If they sell board games, they may be interested in doing a board gaming night every once in awhile where again, you'd want to put up fliers to advertise it. If they don't sell board games, convince them they should. I know of several clubs that meet at board game stores once or more per month. It raises the likelihood of them selling board games and is usually a convenient place for gamers to get together.

A 3rd option would be to post here and say "anyone game in the (insert area of country here) area?" Usually someone will respond since there are gamers all over the place and there may be an established group not too far away.

In any event, good luck!

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Gabe Alvaro
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This post describes basically how I started my game group - http://boardgamegeek.com/article/1080835#1080835

We've grown to nearly 100 total members with an average of about 8 people per game night in just over a year.
 
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    My fellow geeks are quite wise, but I disagree on this one. Fine game groups are rare and difficult to cultivate. We're all different and it's likely that you won't be satisfied unless you find people that share your same outlook. This is not done by casting a wide net.

    Indeed you should game amongst new people at the local shops and clubs, but keep an eye out for the kind of gamers that game the way you do. As you play you'll find someone that seems to fit, and you'll find them looking you in the eye knowingly. This means one of two things:

1. They're attracted to you.
2. They are seeing the same thing that you are -- you have good commonality for gaming.

    Likely you will be well prepared for how to deal with each of these situations.

    Starting a club is fine, but has a lot of overhead involved and you're the one responsible for kicking the losers out (or dealing with them each week because they won't leave). You'll play a lot of dissatisfying games.

    In time you and your buddy will slowly ease in a few more people -- each of you carefully selecting only good quality candidates for inclusion. It will take time, but in a college town there are plenty of people to choose from.

             Sag.
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If Actions Speak Louder Than Words, Then Actions x2 Speak Louder Than Actions
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Here's an article on this subject that I wrote a while back. Hope this helps. If you have any questions, GeekMail me. I feel your pain, I'm going through a game group restructuring right now.

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/article/1705141
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Many, but certainly not most, of the gamers you meet will be assh*les too. The trick is limiting that number to about 1 in 6 players. Also, finding the right kind of assh*les. I mean the level of crap that you are willing to put up with. You want at least 1 a**hole in your group, though not one who is too disruptive or disturbing, as it helps the group bond -- they always have someone to complain about. You will find the "1 A**hole Factor" amazing in holding the group together.

I, for instance, can be an assh*le, but I am a fun one. Another member of our group is always late, suffers from analysis-paralysis, never plans during downtime, and must be the center of attention; but he's a good guy, most of the time. Yet another, a woman, is nearly always right and can get huffity-puffity at times, but is good to game with and finds new, interesting strategies. The others are mostly okay.

Hope this helps.
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E Butler
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I started a game club when I was in college - it was actually a simple affair. I simply posted flyers around campus saying that there would be an organizational meeting in on such and such date & time and the meeting would be held in the student union (or any generic public meeting place that everyone would be able to find). In my case about 30 people showed up. I opened the meeting with a thank you for coming intro and I explained that I was interested in forming a game club, but I really had no idea how to proceed and I asked what people thought. We had a great discussion and by the end of the night the club was formed and temporary officers were appointed and a committee was formed to meet with student government to make us an official club. The nice thing was that other people were excited about doing the leg work - all I had to do was get things going.
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Stephen Dunne
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I don't know how many game stores you have in your area, but at lest here in Austin there are at least 6 good shops. Start going to the shops in your area, meet the other players, find others that have similar interests.

Once you have done that, start gaming with them!

At this point, it is a vetting process. Find those that you like to game with, and get numbers and times they can play. Nix the ones you don't get along with.

Then, it is just a matter of finding a time and a place to game. At a local shop, on campus etc.

Also, having a small group get together and playing something in the student commons area is bound to bring in other players. They may be first timers, or maybe like you and have had little success in finding others to game with. But seeing a group already established will attract other players for certain.
 
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Pete McCartney
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I started my college gaming group the same way a few people here already.

I approached the Student Assosiation, got a club booklet, went to the rez penthouse, got to gether a bunch of people who didn't know each other, or had ever really played games before, talked them into being officers for the club, and away we went.

If you build it, they will come.
 
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Josh
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Well, when a Mommy Game Group loves a Daddy Game Group very much...
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Gary Sonnenberg
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Related to Sag's comments...You might narrow the possibilities by stating up front the broad category or categories of games you'd like to play. If you don't want CCGs or RPGs in your group (not that there's anything wrong with them, of course), just say so. On the positive side, you could mention what you are looking for - perhaps strictly board games, like Settlers, TTR, or whatever your favorites are.
 
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Stephen Dunne
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JoshBot wrote:
Well, when a Mommy Game Group loves a Daddy Game Group very much...


ROFL
 
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Gabe Alvaro
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Sagrilarus wrote:
My fellow geeks are quite wise, but I disagree on this one. Fine game groups are rare and difficult to cultivate. We're all different and it's likely that you won't be satisfied unless you find people that share your same outlook. This is not done by casting a wide net.

The ideal picture that you paint Sag is one I'd love to live in. But if I had gone about doing things the way you suggest I would have had a recipe for a lot of gameless nights.

Not everybody feels this way, but my outlook is that most ANY board game is better than NO boardgame, so I just wanted to play and have people to play with. My main goal in growing a group was a singular vision. I wanted to have a regular day of the week and time at a regular location where I could come and play all of these unplayed games that I keep buying and hearing about and not just have them sitting on the shelf unloved. I figured if such a group could exist, then meeting great people to game with would follow. And that is exactly what has happened. Of course I like some people better than others, but my game group has helped my own social ability, in the worst case, to tolerate and in the best case, to enjoy the company of many different kinds of people. Sure there have been just a few bad apples, but for whatever reason they never seem to stick around too long. Maybe my group is just a bunch of good eggs?
 
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Bill Eldard
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I agree with you, Gabe. Get the group going, and then deal with the undesireables.

To start, you need to have

1. A regular place to play
2. A regular day and time
3. Games

As a college student, you should be able to get the first two requirements licked. Go to your college student union building or recreation hall, and secure a room for the same day/time each week (or month, depending on how often you can get it and how often you want to game).

Then, advertise via

4. Student paper
5. Flyers on bulletin boards in dormitories and classroom buildings
6. Student radio station

If you meet on campus, the college may have rules regarding the group. For instance, you may have to officially register as a student 'club' in order to use the facilities, and there may be rules that go along with that -- you'll have to determine for yourself if the fit is good.

If you don't have to register as a club, then keep the group as informal as possible. You don't need to elect officers; just make yourself the point of contact between the group and the management of the meeting place.

And it pays to leave the meeting room as clean or cleaner than you found it. It breeds good relations between the group and the management.

Best of luck!

 
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Marshall Miller
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The truth is that game groups exist on another plane. None of us has ever really joined a game group. In reality, we have just awoken to the fact that we have always been in a game group.

That said... I would put up a group on facebook. I had an aversion to this type of site for a long time, then I realized that there weren't any campus groups that had non-facebook webpages! I literally couldn't check out any groups without signing up. It sucked at first, but then it turned out to be helpful because there was already a group set up to lure diplomacy players.

My other advice would be to play games in a public place. You will activate the spider reiner-senses of any gamer with in 50 meters!
 
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Stan Hartzler
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Quote:
My other advice would be to play games in a public place. You will activate the spider reiner-senses of any gamer with in 50 meters!


This is very good advice, particularly in a place like college that has a lot of high-traffic places and people interested in recreational activities. This was how I met a fellow serious Scrabble player in grad school when I had given up on playing tournament-level games FTF.
 
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