Eulogy for my game group

Well, all good things must come to an end, and I’m sad to say that my “perfect” game group is blowing up.  And, I have no one else to blame but Luke and Chad for this sorry state of affairs.  For a few years now, my group has been perfect (for me)… We started out with three old friends: me, John and Luke (all OG contributors).  We had known each other for years, knew each others gaming foibles (like Luke’s strange love of all trick taking games and his inexplicable soft spot for weird Schacht games).  All three of us liked to play games quickly, read rules in advance, and were all card-carrying members of the Cult of the New.  Every week, the three of us would get together in someone’s basement and play games all night.  As most Eurogames are meant for 3 or more players, we always had the right number for just about every game.

As things change (like they always do), we started to have life issues that made it harder to make the weekly sessions.  We added two more people to the group (yay for Karen and Chad!) – and between the 5 of us, we managed to average around 3.5 players per week, which still felt just right.  Though there are plenty of games that max out with 4 players, there are still more than enough 5+ player games out there for the rare occasions when everyone could make it.   Everyone in the group was still open to just about any sort of game, so we never really had conflicts with game choices.

I’ve never wanted a big gaming group.  First, we don’t have a fixed location, so it’s nice to have a small group so that any of us could host the group at their place.  Second, I hate having more than one table because then you have to worry about gaming between two tables, and half of your night gets spent playing stupid 10 minute fillers because you’re waiting for the other group to finish up so people can redistribute.  When you have one table, there’s always one game at a time, and everyone plays.  There’s no downtime, and it just works better.

Things continue to change… Chad got a job in the Southwest.  He left in the middle of the night, like the Baltimore Colts – Not even a note goodbye.  It happened so quick that we didn’t even get a last night to play all the games that he thought were “cute”.  Sigh.  And now Luke is moving away to Columbus.  Granted, it’s only 90 minutes away – but probably too far for either of us to make the trek on a weekly basis for gaming.

So, we’ll see how the fall works out.  John, Karen and I are going to try the three-person group for awhile and see how it goes.  Maybe Luke will hate Columbus, sell his new house there and move back to Cincinnati (fingers crossed).   But it was a great run while it lasted, and future iterations of the local game group will have a tough fight to top this group of gamers.


Chad and Luke – you’re going to be missed!  I’ll keep the box of fruit snacks filled up to the top for you.

About Dale Yu

Dale Yu is the Editor of the Opinionated Gamers. He can occasionally be found working as a volunteer administrator for BoardGameGeek, and he previously wrote for BoardGame News.
This entry was posted in Commentary. Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Eulogy for my game group

  1. brianfrahm says:

    Is Chad is moving to the Phoenix area?If so, we certainly welcome him! Not sure how to reach him, but would love to invite him to our game group…

  2. Alex Morrow says:

    CABS will take Luke under their wing.

  3. ianthecool says:

    You should embed Summer of 69 to play when visitors open this page.

  4. Brian "Beetle" Bailey says:

    Serves you right for not including us in your group! :-P

    I’m sure the three of you will do just fine

  5. Reminds me of our group (Tar River Gamers) in Rocky Mount. Over the years we gained and lost a lot of great people. But, the core group, the ones who started it all, never missed, b(r)ought all the games, and read all the rules, etc. is now down to four. Two of the ‘core’ now live in Florida, two in Texas, and one in Pennsylvania. We all keep in touch, still discuss gaming, and still reminisce. The good old days just can’t stay the good old days. But we still hang on to four in Rocky Mount, though one of those can rarely make it on game night any more. We do have a couple of others who are less regular, though they love Eurogaming. I guess all things change. Over the years we have changed our weekly venue four times (a gamer’s shed, two different coffee houses, and a hotel). Our current coffee house is closing this year, so we will be searching for a home again. Of course, the games hitting the table have changed as well. In the beginning, it was mostly war-games. Then came Settlers, Euphrat & Tigris, and the tidal wave of Euros hit us in the late ’90’s. Since then we’ve gone through all the latest-greatest and rolled with the tide. But despite all the changes, the love for games still keeps us all in touch, and has made for long-time friendships, even if they are now long-distance in some cases. This great hobby has made us ‘gamin’ buddies’ for life.

  6. Ryan B. says:

    Actually this article strikes a chord. Since moving to Seattle, I haven’t been able to find the same traction that my very busy boardgame table found in Florida. Now the one friend that was my “must have” person to build my boardgame nights around is moving to Switzerland. On a positive note, I finally was able to build some traction for the “guys night out” games I never could get anyone to play in Florida… Ikusa being chief among them.

    Meanwhile, I have added Escape, Lost Cities: the Boardgame, Whitechapel, Sherlock Holmes and Gold Mine for my mixed play colloection, since moving out here. And I will soon be adding Relic Runners to that list. To make room, I shed myself of Bootleggers, Shogun and some card games. But a regular “mixed-company” crowd that was so easy to find in Florida, still largely eludes me in Seattle. Which is weird because Seattle is DEFINITELY more game-oriented than Florida, in my opinion.

Leave a Reply