Tabletop gaming can be a great way to enjoy time with friends or family. But that fun can quickly be derailed if the game selection is too complex for the player count or a game gets bogged down in referring to rules.
Avoid these mistakes by planning and choosing suitable games for your game night. Here are some tips to help you do just that:
Know Your Audience
Knowing your audience is one of the most important things to do when hosting a game night. It can mean the difference between an evening that is a complete disaster and an event everyone looks forward to repeating.
Choosing who to invite is the first stage in this process. Careful planning is necessary for this situation, and it may entail excluding guests who could interrupt the event flow or ruin the mood.
Another thing to consider is your guests’ average player count and experience level. Too few players will limit the games you can play, and too many will result in a lot of quiet time while waiting for your turn.
You may also want to plan for additional entertainment – music, movies, etc. It will help break the monotony of long game sessions and provide something for those who aren’t quite as into board gaming as others in the group. And don’t forget snacks! Depending on how long your session goes for, it’s likely that people will get hungry.
Make It Comfortable
Modern life has a lot of demands on it, and long dinners with friends or even coffee dates can take a lot of work to fit in. Board game gifts provide a fun, low-pressure way for people to meet and socialize.
If you want your game night to succeed, ensuring everyone is comfortable is essential. Sofas and squishy armchairs may feel cozy and welcoming, but they’re unsuitable for playing board games. Consider investing in comfy dinner chairs to help your guests stay focused and alert.
You’ll also want to ensure you have enough seats for all your guests, especially if you plan on having a more extended gaming session. If you need more seating, it can be frustrating for players to wait around between turns.
You can avoid this issue by locking down your game selection and letting your guests know how long you expect the event to last. There’s an old tool that has been floating around the internet for a while that can be helpful with this: the Board Game Menu.
Keep It Simple
Once you’ve sorted out your guest list and the date set, it’s time to think about how you will organize things. This will involve arranging the space so that it’s comfortable for everyone and figuring out how many games you want to play.
It’s also a good idea to consider your guests’ player count and experience levels, affecting which games are appropriate for your event. For example, a high-end war simulation game might be too complex for people who have only played a few other tabletop games.
You should also consider additional entertainment for when some guests cannot play or if the games take longer than expected (hey, it happens!). This could include having a karaoke corner or playing music for the atmosphere. This will contribute to everyone having a pleasant evening. Additionally, it will give you a safety net in case the games don’t go as expected. It’s a fantastic method to guarantee that your guests leave pleased and excited for the following gaming night!
Pick the Right Time
One of the most essential parts of game night is ensuring your guests have an enjoyable time. This can include showing them where everything is – snacks, drinks, the bathroom, etc. It can also mean that you take polls on what games they’d like to play and devise a system to ensure that everyone gets to choose a game at least once during the event.
Considering these things, it can be a good idea only to invite people who don’t enjoy board gaming or who may ruin the mood of your group. You’re more than welcome to invite people who enjoy these games, but it’s best to try to make the night something your guests will look forward to returning to.
As an aside, it’s also a good idea to do as much of the setup as possible ahead of time, especially for games that require a significant amount of setup. Nothing ruins the mood more than spending 45 minutes sorting out pieces or shuffling cards when the other players are ready to start playing.
Get Snacks Ready
A terrific way to spend time with friends and family is to organize a night of board games. But organizing a good game night involves a lot of work, and providing the right food for your guests is crucial.
You want to provide smooth snacks. After all, nobody likes greasy finger stains on their tokens or cards! Instead of chips and dip, try jerky (there are even vegetarian options!) or hummus. Popcorn, trail mix, and sliced fruit are other good choices, as they’re easy to grab without a plate.
Another way to keep your gaming night mess-free is to serve snacks on toothpicks or skewers. Add cheese, olives (drain them beforehand!), pineapple, and even sausages to your skewers. This hack will have your gamers eating their favorite foods and keeping their hands clean. That means more time playing!