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Subject: Sad experiences with treatment of board gaming/gamers rss

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Bill Hartman
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Roseville
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I just need a moment to rant/talk about my experiences with board gaming, since being introduced to more than Monopoly and Scattergories.

I was (initially) lucky enough to find a store within 4 miles that catered to gaming. Unfortunately, over time I had come to realize that the owner of that store prefers to cater to Warhammer/miniatures and CCG's. Board gaming is just an afterthought, he doesn't like to keep much variety in stock, does not offer any demo games/library for the store. The dealbreaker there, though, was the owner pulling some shifty stuff with me and another person regarding ordering expansions or things he didn't stock. I also heard from a friend who witnessed a kid being yelled at by the owner for stating (during a game of Pokemon) that he had bought some cards online. My order of Cthulhu Dice for my daughter went from a 2-3 day arrival, to nearly 3 weeks (and 2 different stories during that time, and another story a week later when I went to meet someone for a board game session). A fellow board gamer ordered an expansion for Summoner Wars from this same guy, and last I spoke was at nearly a month without arriving (and I believe the guy even said he was required to pay for it or put money down!). I wouldn't be so nice in a situation like that, I'd be raising hell (if I had put money down).

Basides that, the owner didn't want to help me assemble a board game group. I was told to come in and sit and wait during another gaming session. It was packed like sardines, and obvious that at least half of them hadn't bathed in quite some time. Not the type of atmosphere I want to sit and play board games with friends or my family, not that there was really space anyhow (and who is going to play a board game during their 10-15 minute break of Warhammer or Magic?)

I walked away from that store for the most part, after the owner lectured me (about how inefficient it is for him to have to answer the phone regarding shipments, second time I had called over 4 days...lol) when I called into the store regarding the Cthulhu dice, to ask if his shipment had arrived as planned. Unfortunately, I have a friend who likes to meet there on Wednesdays for board games, so I reluctantly started going back just for that, but refuse to shop there.

I instead contacted our local Barnes and Noble, who assured me they had PLENTY of lunchroom size tables we could have.

We held a meet and greet on March 31, and other than my wife, daughter, and myself, we only had one other able to show up. They placed us, however, in a very nice central/back location of the store, where people could watch us play and inquire. We all bought games afterwards, as a thank you to Barnes and Noble. I bought 3 Gamewright games for my daughter, a zombie doll, 2 books, as well as Forbidden Island and Castle Panic for game nights/family play. Good bit of purchases from myself alone over a 2 week period. Another member bought Forbidden Island the night of the meeting as well.

The next meeting (scheduled 4 weeks in advance), no one knew we were to be there and had no room for us to set up for quite some time. Understood, things happen. I politely waited, sent my wife and daughter to the kids area to keep her occupied. I then offered assistance. I was told no, and left it at that. They brought out one table and four chairs, as requested, but stuck us in a remote, tiny corner of the store.

People showed up and wanted to join, so we requested another table and were rudely told we could have a small one, but not to ask for another. We didn't need another, so everyone politely agreed and I figured I would contact the community manager (who I had set all of this up with), and ask if our schedule was ok, and why we had been told that we couldn't have any more tables, after she had told me they had plenty (enough to seat 20 people and multiple games, as per my original flyer that they approved). I also asked why I was denied access to their demo games, that she had told me we could use. I stressed that it wasn't a big deal, but we were interested in trying some new games as well as the ones we had. I also let the Community Manager know that shoppers had stopped to watch our games on the second night as well, and inquired about the group/club. B&N wouldn't let me give out my own flyer INSIDE the store, so I have to direct them to the store's official flyer, which didn't have our info on it. Kind of an issue, when trying to build a solid group.

The lack of tables and space that night, were said to be due to them forgetting we were to be there. Ok, that's fine. I understand things happen. But then, the email response went on to say that all of the demo games were ones they don't offer for sale in THAT B&N currently, so we couldn't have access to them. Ok, I guess I'll go with that, although we play a mix of games they offer and ones they don't, the Barnes and Noble 30-40 minutes up the road offers a MUCH wider selection, but they also are right near Penn State/State College.

But then the email response stressed that she could not allow us the space for more than 2 tables, stressed that although yes she had told me they had a ton of tables, I needed to understand they are a retail store first and foremost, and that customers need to be able to shop. I don't see how that was ever an issue, we even cleaned up afterwards and offered to help put tables away (but was told no, they would handle it). The email response added that we couldn't have the original location back where they set us up for the "Meet and Greet" (which was perfect, and could have held a ton of tables). I was told 2 tables max, and we had to go in the corner of the store, and that I should understand that they are a retail place. This totally confuses me, as they are the ones who told me holding the Gaming group meet-ups there was perfectly ok, and that they had tons of tables (Even offering us to use tables in the coffee bar area, if needed as well).

Now, we are all quiet, polite individuals. Bathed, dressed well, intelligent and courteous. The 2 young kids (around 8) were kept with us at all times, had their own games to play, were not allowed to run loose and were well behaved. But here I am again, feeling like the Board Gaming aspect is being pushed to the side, like we aren't important enough.

With the rise of board gaming, stores like Target and B&N carrying a wider selection of games (lots of FFG and SJG titles, stuff like Axis and Allies, Zombies!!!, Settlers of Catan, etc.), I would think it would be more acceptable. I'm not asking to be given the entire store, I am always sure to keep the area clean and free of obstruction, and keep noise down (party games are avoided, to my wife and her friends' dismay). But I can't help but have the feeling that we are being pushed aside, and now I have to either choose to leave my wife and kid (as well as other kids) at home, and focus on leaving space for adults to play (Which I don't think is fair, since my daughter can play a lot games thus far, even with the adults sometimes, and the other guys son is experienced with games and well behaved), or tell possible new members that we don't have space for any more people (since 2 tables basically gives us room for 2 games, usually one that is easier for the kids, and one that is more experienced/older crowd).

I'm running out of ideas as I'm slowly finding more and more board gamers, short of buying tables and chairs and clearing out a room in my house to host at least 2 tables of my own. I can either be forced down to one table, on busy nights at the local Warhammer shop, while smelling the horrible unwashed masses that reek of smoke, stay stuck in the corner of Barnes and Noble, or I guess host at my house.

Neither seems to be a good option for attracting new/more players. The game store doesn't have walk-ins beyond the Warhammer/Magic/Pokemon players already scheduled to be there (a lot of people locally just don't like the store, owner, and/or atmosphere and refuse to even enter). The Barnes and Noble allows an opportunity for shoppers to see the game and be interested, but we are now told that we can't have the space we originally were told we could have, so that stops that.

I hear of how stores in other areas of the country are much more open and accepting of the board game crowds, but at least here in central PA I'm almost talked down to about it with most people. Heck, even B&N employees asked me, "What, you mean that Warhammer junk? I don't get what types of games you are coming here to play".

I explain, and they just look at me blankly. But it's obvious that people ARE interested once they see the games being played. B&N obviously doesn't get that (nor does the owner of the game store seem to understand that if he was more polite and had a better attitude, and also refrained from playing some fairly offensive (to a family atmosphere) punk rock in the store during daytime hours when kids are present, he wouldn't have lost so many of his original customers. I understand he is catering to HIS crowd, but he is losing some of his crowd as well as his original huge family following (YEARS ago). There IS a market for this stuff, but no one around here seems to care or want to support it (or know how to).

Too bad I don't have the money to open my own store, because in the right location someone could do well here, especially if they were willing to NOT fully cater to a certain crowd here (In an interview, the game store owner here proclaimed, "I even get the guys who come in to play Magic, and haven't showered in 3 days and wear their jingle hats").

But they don't understand us board gamers, or want to promote that. HUH?
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Rishi A.
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That is sad, though I'm not surprised. I do know a couple local game stores around here that have dedicated board gaming nights, but I think most are geared towards CCGs and miniatures.

Have you looked into whether you can get a conference room at your local library?
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Boaty McBoatface
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At the end of the day he is running a buisines, not a community center (and yes I have seen not disimilar things, stores that take your money but fail to deliver, my advice is never pay up front ever in game stores), so they are interested in encouraging what makes him the best living.

Personaly I deplore the way GW and CCG's have taken over the gaming hobby, but that is where the money is at.

I woudl susgest contacing your local village hall or community center and see how much they hire a room for the night. Print up a few leaflets to put there(and in your local libuary). When they ask were they can get games tell em online.
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Bill Hartman
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The library was actually an idea that another fellow gamer had, before we set up shop at Barnes and Noble. I never looked into it, because the Barnes and Noble was a top choice among interested parties, and they seemed so open to it.

I'm curious myself now, if the Library would have space, but I'm not sure the library here is open late enough on a Saturday to meet the majority of everyone's schedules (I'm fairly open, but most others prefer later in the evening especially during spring/summer).

Thanks for reminding me of the Library, though, I'm going to have to look into that!
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Bill Hartman
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slatersteven wrote:
At the end of the day he is running a buisines, not a community center (and yes I have seen not disimilar things, stores that take your money but fail to deliver, my advice is never pay up front ever in game stores), so they are interested in encouraging what makes him the best living.


I would agree, except he is LOSING business. His primary base that got him started over a decade ago, was due to taking in a huge group of kids that played Pokemon and Magic, from what I've heard and read in interviews with him. He supported board gaming as well, much more back then. Around 5-6 years ago he decided to make the huge leap to converting most of his store to Warhammer and miniatures, and reduced everything else but CCG's.

He has also been arguing over the phone with some people lately, regarding people leaving his current activities/events, so obviously the Warhammer and CCG crowd isn't supporting him with his current attitude/business sense (or lack thereof).

He has even stated to me that board game groups don't exist - that people just talk about them on sites like BGG. That's absolute bull. It's just that the people that do game, avoid his store like the plague for the most part, and don't advertise. Makes it tough to find them, I've been working on all of this for about a year, really working on it for about the past 4 months.
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Jonathan Harrison
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FunkyFlyChicken wrote:
He has even stated to me that board game groups don't exist - that people just talk about them on sites like BGG. That's absolute bull. It's just that the people that do game, avoid his store like the plague for the most part, and don't advertise. Makes it tough to find them, I've been working on all of this for about a year, really working on it for about the past 4 months.
What, he thinks people just sit around and look at these things? What conceivable reason could he have for thinking that, unlike with every other activity, if people enjoy doing something together, they would not get together to do it together again?
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Boaty McBoatface
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FunkyFlyChicken wrote:
slatersteven wrote:
At the end of the day he is running a buisines, not a community center (and yes I have seen not disimilar things, stores that take your money but fail to deliver, my advice is never pay up front ever in game stores), so they are interested in encouraging what makes him the best living.


I would agree, except he is LOSING business. His primary base that got him started over a decade ago, was due to taking in a huge group of kids that played Pokemon and Magic, from what I've heard and read in interviews with him. He has also been arguing over the phone with some people lately, regarding people leaving his current activities/events.

He has even stated to me that board game groups don't exist - that people just talk about them on sites like BGG. That's absolute bull. It's just that the people that do game, avoid his store like the plague for the most part, and don't advertise. Makes it tough to find them, I've been working on all of this for about a year, really working on it for about the past 4 months.


All the local game shops I know off all have GW as thier bread and butter, and have to cater for the screeming brats (its why I avoid GW stores like a disease ridden plague rat). He may lose some buisiness, but at then end of the day if he losses one boardgamer who wil, spend £50 a month on one board game, or he losses 5 kids who will spend £15 a month each in much smaller (and therfore easier to stock in numbers) figures I know which I would consider more ecconomicly viable.

Also if the kids are playing GW or pokemin there is a much bete chance that they will buy extra product then you and a few mates playing settlers (after all you have a copy). He uses gaming nights to try and sell product, not to give you a warm and cosey place to play.
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B C Z
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The first store sounds like an LGS but not an FLGS, and I've seen both many a time. I don't preorder from one of my LGSs any more because I got severely burned not once but twice due to their mismanagement of their inventory and failure to pay Alliance (thus, they don't get their shipments consistently from Alliance).

The best thing to do is get into the car and drive away and wait for that location to go out of business and be replaced with a wireless phone outlet.

-=-

The B&N experience is strange, especially given that the first night was such as success. If you go back, one way around the 'no handing out flyers is to have set up a Meetup Page (or similar social networking site) and then put a placard in one of those clear plastic standup things that clearly explains who you are and where to find more information (website, possibly scannable QR code if you're fancy). That way you're not handing out flyers and it may be 'okay' in their view.

I would recommend trying to follow up in person (not via email) to set up a regular schedule with 20 or so seats (5 tables). Offer to demonstrate and play games they currently sell. Honestly, it's free advertising for B&N - and they've done a really good job of catering to the more mainstream gaming offerings that are available.

Let us know how it works out.
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Oliver Kiley
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There are lots of places one could host a gaming event.

(1) Libraries are a good choice, and many have meeting rooms/spaces that could be rented for a nominal fee.

(2) Commuunity centers (ditto above)

(3) Recreation centers might provide space/rooms for a reasonable fee as well.

(4) If anyone in the gaming group lives in a condo development with a common house / rec room, that;s a good choice.

(5) Most municipal park departments have meeting spaces somewhere that can be reserved.

(6) You can always approach coffee shops / cafe's and inquire about hosting gaming events. They might have some stipulations and want the gamers to buy a few things, but that can be negotiated.

(7) Community colleges or universities often allow public access and if anyone in the group is a student, could probably reserve a room by forming a school group/club.
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Bill Hartman
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slatersteven wrote:
All the local game shops I know off all have GW as thier bread and butter, and have to cater for the screeming brats (its why I avoid GW stores like a disease ridden plague rat). He may lose some buisiness, but at then end of the day if he losses one boardgamer who wil, spend £50 a month on one board game, or he losses 5 kids who will spend £15 a month each in much smaller (and therfore easier to stock in numbers) figures I know which I would consider more ecconomicly viable.

Also if the kids are playing GW or pokemin there is a much bete chance that they will buy extra product then you and a few mates playing settlers (after all you have a copy). He uses gaming nights to try and sell product, not to give you a warm and cosey place to play.


I don't know about most boardgamers spending only 50 a month, I was spending around 100 a month in his store initially to support him. Bought Munchkin for my daughter, with some expansions she wanted. Zombies!!! along with 3 expansions, Jungle Speed, King of Tokyo, etc.

I usually went in once a month with the intent to make a few purchases at once.

I realize I'm not spending 300-400 a month like some of the warhammer crowd does (I seriously don't get that, just like I dislike the CCG model for tournament style play - I find it ridiculous to spend that kind of money to keep up with a game, I just want to have fun with it and have everyone play on a fair and balanced field). But boardgamers would support the store.

Hobbytown USA in frederick, Maryland, has demo games available to play. The guy working the day I visited, told me it helps them with sales. People get a chance to come in, play with their friends/families, and buy the games they enjoy. The owner of Brainstorm Comics, also in Frederick, told me to call him before I come down to see my grandfather, and he'd get games ready for me to play (said give him 2 weeks notice, and he'd even order a game to play - and stressed that I was under no obligation to buy). I bought stuff from him that day, just because of that offer, when I had no intention of actually shopping (was just checking the store out to see what it was like).

The guy here, tells me why the hell would he offer demo games, no one would ever buy a game again. The guy here won't sell individual die, because he says people stole too many (Are they that hard to put behind the counter then?). Instead, he tries to push larger containers of single-type. I drive 40 minutes up the road to buy games and accessories. He got mad at me because I bought something from up the road that he didn't have in stock. Told me it would only take him a week to stock it. 3 weeks later still nothing.

Bad business is bad business. He's catering to no one but his own taste, not what is good for his business, which is why even his current model is failing him.
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Victoria Osborne
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there are a couple of options, try your local library. Chris runs the game day in Ashland library, he has a whole thread on how he started it. It gets a LOT of people, though last week the staff locked the door and locked the gamers out, but that got resolved. Many libraries want game days etc as it brings more people into the library, I would vent8ure to say that soon they will be adding in board game lending libraries to their books soon. ((the logistics of keeping all of the pieces will be a nightmare though))

another one is your church. Churches love board game days. Talk to Tom Vasel he runs a huge one at his church. Board game days are good for churches as you get fellowship and community outreach and bring in people into the church, gets kids off of the street etc.

you also need to have a lot of games or have people that can bring a lot of games to give variety. Though at times i think when you are starting a smaller selection just might be better. GEt the gatekeeper games if you do not have them, Settlers, Ticket to ride, and gatekeeper. these are easy and settlers is known. There are tons more games, for co op go with forbidden island, which is easier than pandemic, start small and grow. But you need to start with a big enough variety.

I wish i could find that link on building a game night that Chris wrote it is very good.

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Bill Hartman
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Thanks everyone for the discussion and suggestions.

I love this hobby, and being sick and stuck in the house a lot of the time causes me to greatly look forward to the opportunities I have to get out and enjoy things.

I'd just equally love to be able to share this hobby with others, and help it grow. Doesn't hurt that it has enabled me to make a few friends here who share similar "geek" interests. Board gaming has been a positive influence with my wife and daughter as well, allowing us a common activity to do together that doesn't involve the television/video game consoles (honestly, we rarely play video games anymore and dumped cable TV, which I am FINE with!).

I love to see my daughter (and my wife) click with a game, and get that "lightbulb" moment, and have that shared experience (win or lose). But I don't like to force my interests on them, and that's where the group(s) come into play, allowing me to branch out even more.
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Boaty McBoatface
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FunkyFlyChicken wrote:
I don't know about most boardgamers spending only 50 a month, I was spending around 100 a month in his store initially to support him. Bought Munchkin for my daughter, with some expansions she wanted. Zombies!!! along with 3 expansions, Jungle Speed, King of Tokyo, etc.

I usually went in once a month with the intent to make a few purchases at once.

I realize I'm not spending 300-400 a month like some of the warhammer crowd does (I seriously don't get that, just like I dislike the CCG model for tournament style play - I find it ridiculous to spend that kind of money to keep up with a game, I just want to have fun with it and have everyone play on a fair and balanced field). But boardgamers would support the store.

Hobbytown USA in frederick, Maryland, has demo games available to play. The guy working the day I visited, told me it helps them with sales. People get a chance to come in, play with their friends/families, and buy the games they enjoy. The owner of Brainstorm Comics, also in Frederick, told me to call him before I come down to see my grandfather, and he'd get games ready for me to play (said give him 2 weeks notice, and he'd even order a game to play - and stressed that I was under no obligation to buy). I bought stuff from him that day, just because of that offer, when I had no intention of actually shopping (was just checking the store out to see what it was like).

The guy here, tells me why the hell would he offer demo games, no one would ever buy a game again. The guy here won't sell individual die, because he says people stole too many (Are they that hard to put behind the counter then?). Instead, he tries to push larger containers of single-type. I drive 40 minutes up the road to buy games and accessories. He got mad at me because I bought something from up the road that he didn't have in stock. Told me it would only take him a week to stock it. 3 weeks later still nothing.

Bad business is bad business. He's catering to no one but his own taste, not what is good for his business, which is why even his current model is failing him.


IN the space a modern boardgame (say £50 RRP) takes up he can display £100's of pounds worth of GW, CCG's ect. This has always been an issue with gamestores, they can't stock everything. So need to pick what they can make them most most off (and personaly I think GW is killing the hobby by slow stragualtion).

As to the fact he did not get in stock something, you had already purchased elsewhere. Well if you no longer want it and he has limited shelf space why is he going to stock it, on the off chance someone else might. Again I have seen stock sit on shelves in local game store for (litterlay) decades and not move.

I agree that gamers will but from stores that treat them decently more often then forom the kind of store that really is a scuzz hole. But I have know FLGS that re exaclty as you descide that have gone under, not becaseu they did not make money but becaseu they money they made was not worth all the hard work (in fact the only LGS that I have seen make real money is a right shyster).

I also suspect that a lot of game store owners look at GW and think that is the sort of buisiness model I need, limited selection ( maximised space) stock they can sell with a large profit margin.
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Shayne Gray
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Another idea is the party room(s) of a restaurant. Our group gets together on 1 Friday and 1 Saturday each month and if our FLGS is full we have an overflow spot at a pizza parlor across the street. They let us use their paty room etc.
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Bill Hartman
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Valairia wrote:
there are a couple of options, try your local library. Chris runs the game day in Ashland library, he has a whole thread on how he started it. It gets a LOT of people, though last week the staff locked the door and locked the gamers out, but that got resolved. Many libraries want game days etc as it brings more people into the library, I would vent8ure to say that soon they will be adding in board game lending libraries to their books soon. ((the logistics of keeping all of the pieces will be a nightmare though))

another one is your church. Churches love board game days. Talk to Tom Vasel he runs a huge one at his church. Board game days are good for churches as you get fellowship and community outreach and bring in people into the church, gets kids off of the street etc.

you also need to have a lot of games or have people that can bring a lot of games to give variety. Though at times i think when you are starting a smaller selection just might be better. GEt the gatekeeper games if you do not have them, Settlers, Ticket to ride, and gatekeeper. these are easy and settlers is known. There are tons more games, for co op go with forbidden island, which is easier than pandemic, start small and grow. But you need to start with a big enough variety.

I wish i could find that link on building a game night that Chris wrote it is very good.



I have heard of possibly one church here that has a game night, and I wouldn't be opposed to joining them, but I'm not a religious person and I wouldn't want it looked at as a recruiting tool, which sometimes can be an issue. I'm fine with what other people believe, but I have found that even when I attended church services with my wife and daughter, if people found out I wasn't a "Believer" myself, I was treated quite negatively if I didn't want to be "converted", so I tend to avoid that anymore.

Thanks for the game recommendations, I totally agree on that. Thankfully, one of the members has a HUGE collection and is a wonderful teacher. I am very lucky and grateful to have met him. The other member is very nice/personable, and has just started acquiring gateway games, so we learn them together for the most part.

Combined, we have access to just about any gateway you could imagine. One guy owns Ticket to Ride, 7 Wonders, Stone Age, Pandemic, etc. Another owns a full truck-load of games, including Shadows over Camelot, Smallworld, various Deckbuilders, tactical/strategy games, wargames, etc.

My own collection so far is listed in my profile, complete. I'd say I have a pretty good start myself, for just a few months of heavy purchases, although I've tended to steer more towards my family's interests more than the group, until we started meeting in March.
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Patrick C.
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It costs money, but you can start a meetup.com group. Initial meeting at a public space like a library, then future meetups at people's homes.

There's been some debate in my local meetup that having game days at homes discourages new members who might feel uncomfortable showing up at a stranger's house. We tried an event at the library to encourage new or inactive members to come join us and break the ice. It didn't do much good. IOW, the people who want to play will show up, others are, well, wannabes who really aren't that interested when the rubber hits the road. This is true with all meetup groups, not just board gaming. Plan on 75% (or more) of all your members not showing up at any given event.

I'm a member of three meetups and the issue of finding a public place is always a problem. The biggest group has gone through several businesses where they play. For about six months now they've been playing at a Chinese restaurant. This arrangement can get expensive after awhile.

The other two groups, one of which I run directly, just holds events at private homes.

You lose the ability to pick up new members who see you playing in public, but you can still advertise on bulletin boards etc. And meetup.com has a built in base of people ready to join new groups. When you launch a group they send out a mass announcement to meetup members who live locally who have stated they were interested in whatever your group is focused on - board games, tennis, whatever.
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Bill Hartman
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slatersteven wrote:
As to the fact he did not get in stock something, you had already purchased elsewhere. Well if you no longer want it and he has limited shelf space why is he going to stock it, on the off chance someone else might. Again I have seen stock sit on shelves in local game store for (litterlay) decades and not move.


I think you misunderstand that. I myself, and others gave him time to get his NORMAL restock that he was claiming would only take 2-3 days. We would ask about an item, and were told he ALWAYS Stocked that, but was just waiting on his next shipment, which would arrive in 2-3 days. Weeks later he wasn't restocked. I informed him I would order elsewhere, after another incident, which upset him. And he let me know it. He never had restocked the item.

Another person wanted, as I stated, an expansion to Summoner Wars and PAID UP FRONT, and still hadn't received it after 3-4 weeks.

He also yelled at a kid for stating he had ordered some Pokemon cards online, telling the kid (as he had told me once) that he shouldn't order online or anywhere else but from him, because he provides the tables. It's the wrong way to go about it, especially when we WERE buying stuff from him.

It is not good business to act like you are doing your CUSTOMERS a favor by being in business, and trying to bully them into being afraid to ever shop anywhere else. The business relies on the CUSTOMER, who will gladly take that business elsewhere, even if it means driving further out of the way.

I couldn't always wait indefinitely for him to decide to get something in, if it was important to a game. And I certainly wouldn't pay up front to have something ordered, while he plays with my money for a month.
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Victoria Osborne
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Well since I go to an Episcopal Chruch it is notorious for not prostelizing just providing fellowship. NOt sure on other chruchs though, go check it out, if they are sticky about horror themes, or spells and only want "Good Christian Games." walk out. Mostly though they just want to have fun.

Also one more thought on and the B&N if they got complaints about people playing games in the store while the complaintent was trying to shop for books, then the manager will address those complaints. Book Clubs are one thing, because they are a book store and people will buy a copy of the book that will need to be read the following week. Game Days does not mean that the people playing the game will buy that game or even a book from their store. Any complaints are likely to have a lot of weight as Games are still not as socially accepted. So try not to be too hard on the B&N manager as she said, she is running a business, and has corporate officers to answer to as well. Too many complaints and i would say 3 in one session will not make her friendly to you.
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Aaron Morgan
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FunkyFlyChicken wrote:
I'm curious myself now, if the Library would have space, but I'm not sure the library here is open late enough on a Saturday to meet the majority of everyone's schedules (I'm fairly open, but most others prefer later in the evening especially during spring/summer).


There are at least two gaming groups in my city that play in library spaces, and the library system has been very accommodating. The room that a boardgame group uses is available late in the evening, and in another facility, members of a wargaming group I'm a part of pick up a key to the space in the morning and we lock up on our way out (after the library has closed).

Talk to some librarians - every one I've spoken with LOVES supporting community outreach programs and anything that gets people through the library's doors.
 
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Valairia wrote:
Also one more thought on and the B&N if they got complaints about people playing games in the store while the complaintent was trying to shop for books, then the manager will address those complaints. Book Clubs are one thing, because they are a book store and people will buy a copy of the book that will need to be read the following week. Game Days does not mean that the people playing the game will buy that game or even a book from their store. Any complaints are likely to have a lot of weight as Games are still not as socially accepted. So try not to be too hard on the B&N manager as she said, she is running a business, and has corporate officers to answer to as well. Too many complaints and i would say 3 in one session will not make her friendly to you.


I had thought of that as well, which is why I inquired about that as well in my emails to her (she isn't in the store often). As far as I am aware, there were no complaints. We had the opposite reaction, people were interested and asked questions about the games we were playing.

I just found that odd, after our original meetings, how things seemed to change. I guess it is possible that maybe SOMEONE complained, and we weren't told, but if someone complained about maybe a horror theme game (like Eaten By Zombies, which we played last time), I would think they could let me know to avoid those types.

OTherwise we played Dicecapades, 7 Wonders, and Ticket to Ride.
 
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Boaty McBoatface
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FunkyFlyChicken wrote:
slatersteven wrote:
As to the fact he did not get in stock something, you had already purchased elsewhere. Well if you no longer want it and he has limited shelf space why is he going to stock it, on the off chance someone else might. Again I have seen stock sit on shelves in local game store for (litterlay) decades and not move.


I think you misunderstand that. I myself, and others gave him time to get his NORMAL restock that he was claiming would only take 2-3 days. We would ask about an item, and were told he ALWAYS Stocked that, but was just waiting on his next shipment, which would arrive in 2-3 days. Weeks later he wasn't restocked. I informed him I would order elsewhere, after another incident, which upset him. And he let me know it. He never had restocked the item.

Another person wanted, as I stated, an expansion to Summoner Wars and PAID UP FRONT, and still hadn't received it after 3-4 weeks.


Ahh I see (I have seen this (frequently) myself at the local dank pit). This is a very real, problem with many games shops. However I do know that many wholesale purchases have to be over a certain ammount. This does not excuse the fact that many gaem shop owners will claim to eithr have stock (or be able to get stock) they can't (and I have having this very issue at this timke over the new Startrek collectable ship game, a local shop keeps saying it will get it it but is (apparently) unable to at this time (not the dank pit referred to above)).

This I think is more to do with the fact that many poeple who start up gaem shops think its easy money (and like the idea of working in their hobby) then real sishinesty, or lack of respect. Simply put they are not able to run a buisines.
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Boaty McBoatface
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FunkyFlyChicken wrote:
As far as I am aware, there were no complaints. We had the opposite reaction, people were interested and asked questions about the games we were playing.

I specifically asked in my email if there was a problem that I needed to address, so as to not cause any trouble, and was told no, that they were just a retail store in the end, and couldn't afford us the space.

I just found that odd, after our original meetings. I guess it is possible that maybe SOMEONE complained, and we weren't told, but if someone complained about maybe a horror theme game (like Eaten By Zombies, which we played last time), I would think they could let me know to avoid those types.

OTherwise we played Dicecapades, 7 Wonders, and Ticket to Ride.


If the complaint was of a 'I wanted to buy X and thre were a lot of stragne people sitting at a table in the way, how dare you create a cluttered store'. then it would not matter mwhat gaenm you chose to play. Indeed you story does seem to indicate that the space you took up was an issue.
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Bill Hartman
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Yeah, myself and another feel that he is waiting to place a large enough order to avoid shipping charges, and has to order from various vendors.

I'd be fine with that, if he was honest and upfront about it.
 
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RE: The Space in Barnes and Noble

We were given that original space, which was in the DVD/Music section. We were told originally that would be the best space, so that we WEREN'T in the way. That first night, we only needed one table. The area, as the new member commented, was perfect for holding more tables. It could have easily supported 3 tables without being in the way at all.

Now we are placed in a small, restrictive area in the book aisles in a corner of the store, which I would think would have caused MORE issue.

There were only 2-3 people shopping the DVD section the night we were there, they all stopped and politely asked about the game we were playing (Ticket to Ride).

The night they forgot about us, I did have the feeling that we were more "in the way", which is why I inquired to having the original space back. That was met with a "No", without a real reason why other than what I said about them stating they are a retail store first and foremost. Very vague, but I do get the impression that we are being pushed aside for some reason or another.

I did point out that people seemed very interested in the games, and we added a new member because of that, and I also stressed that if there was ANY issue or problem, that I would certainly make adjustments to fix them. That wasn't brought up in the reply, just that 2 tables was the max they could give us, and that we would be placed in the back corner of the store from now on.

It's interesting to me, that they have all of this space taken up for lego centers, thomas the train tables, and areas for kids to play (which would get noisy, and the lego table is right in the book area, not the kid's section). But oddly, setting up a few tables for board gamers once or twice a month has seemed to be an issue, when it never seemed to be when we initially set it up.

Maybe it was bad communication, but I don't know why they would tell me they have a TON of tables, and how we could pull tables together to make larger play surfaces, etc, and now be where we are after only 2 (successful) meetings.
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Brad N
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Regarding the game store... ultimately, it is his store and he can do what he wants. It sounds like that place isn't going to change. I will just note here that I'm Board (FLGS in Madison) has been phenomenal with their approach to providing for gamers in the area. It is the cleanest and friendliest store I've ever set foot in. The owner makes his space available for all gamers and, as far as I can tell, it is working. People like me play games there once in a while and I buy games there too. More importantly, whenever the topic of boardgames comes up I talk about how great this store is and how people should go there.

Regarding where to host your game night... I think the suggestions for church, library, school, community or recreation center, etc. are all very good. Most game sessions I go to are at people's houses. If you can get people interested, it's often the most comfortable place to play. Plus, people don't have to then cart around their games. As long as the person hosting has a decent collection, others can bring a few things to supplement.

Good luck!
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