You would probably think that in the age of hyper real video games and online food and drink delivery that meeting up in a pub to play a board game would be reserved for a handful of analog purists. However, the rise of board games bars recently is more than unexpected, especially as many of these games do have virtual counterparts.
From frustration to Dungeons And Dragons the games played in public aren’t tied down by a particular genre, instead socialising with folk and trying to best your opponents is a beloved pastime that is increasing in popularity, and here are some reasons why that might be the case.
Better Than A Chinwag
Let’s be honest, if you meet with the same bunch week after week things can get a little stale. To avoid talking about what wallpaper your mate is leaning towards or whether or not her shower is still leaking, board games direct attention to something different. If you are competitive bunch you may enjoy going head to head, or teaming up against rival inner groups. No matter what you do it creates a fun atmosphere out of one that can be a drag.
Many people with an inclination to stay indoors love playing games, so what board game bars do is they find a way to get these folk out in the open. By making a comfortable environment for quiet types to feel at home (which may just be in front of a whole lot of dice and some character sheets) those who haven’t braved the busy bar environment are slowly being eased back into society. This allows for great interactions between extroverted gaming novices and introverted pros that can help people switch roles temporarily.
No Weirdoes Here
When it comes to games like D&D there has been a long running stigma that the people who play it are oddball basement dwelling folk. Though as always a minority may fit the stereotype, on the who these people are nothing short of imaginative and keen to engage with people. By having places where these and similar games are encouraged, players from any background can play in public without feeling like they are being stared at.
Online Groups IRL
The internet is well known for separating us, but its does allow us connect in new ways. Lots of groups that collectively assemble to play role playing games in bars may not have had the means to do so before the web had a group for every subculture. Now connecting with local people is easier than before as is messaging a group on the fly to organise a few games.
Alcohol Fuelled Adventures
Of course, the secret ingredient here is what is behind the bar. Booze can make people react in all kinds of ways (though not all good) but in a gaming environment it can bring quiet people out of their shells or help people make decisions they usually wouldn’t. Get the game leader drunk enough in monopoly and she might become more generous, get your warlock drunk in your fantasy campaign and they might become reckless. Use at your own discretion.