So I wanted to share some of my personal experiences with finding groups of people to play Role-playing Games with. I also will be sharing a pretty condensed list of tools that anyone can use to find their own group. These can also be found HERE
A little background (feel free to skip ahead lol)
I was born and raised in a small town in West Virginia (USA) that was about an hour away or so from the nearest populated cities of Cleveland or Pittsburgh. Needless to say, in my teenage years (the 90’s) there were not a lot of people introducing me to these things.
Late in high school I was first introduced by a few people to play some D&D with. At the time, it didn’t seem to attract my attention as much as it does today. Whether this was an older system, not really caring for the campaign, or what not. It just didn’t stick then.
Then when I was a junior in college, I was introduced to D&D 3.5 with another group of friends. Again, we played a handful of times, had a lot more fun than the first group I played with, but it still didn’t grab a hold. Again, I think it was limited exposure, not fully taking the time to sit down and read through the books (that seemed so daunting at the time to know everything out of).
So after I graduated college I ended up moving down to the land of Sunshine, Tampa Florida. Needless to say, the idea of playing tabletop role-playing games took a huge back-burner there, as I didn’t know anyone who played or showed interest. It wasn’t until I relocated back north to living in Pittsburgh PA where I truly became interested (at first out of sheer boredom) to connect back into playing role-playing games. This would have been in 2010.
Once I moved back, I still didn’t have any friends that I felt would be interested in playing such a game (or so I thought). So I sought to put myself out into the world and use the best tool ever created for finding such things, the Interwebs.
(Ok, you can start reading here)
So I first thought to myself. How am I going to find people to try and play D&D with? That led me to doing a simple Google Search. I found a site called meetup.com that seemed to have a meetup group for all sorts of stuff in my area. Within a few days, I had found a local game shop near me that was running D&D weekly. So I went and attended a few of those sessions every once in awhile.
I then became confident in the ruleset enough that I began to look for other ways to play that might be more convenient, even if it was online. I then found the Roll20 website where you could play games with people online and in an actual virtual tabletop environment. You could even create your own games to host. I jumped in a few games on there.
I then became much more familiar with these games and some other simpler RPG rulesets that would be a good segway into roleplaying games for people who have never played before (Risus: The Anything RPG). I decided to run some friends of mine who I was currently playing board games with through a D&D like setting but using simpler rules. They loved it and that spurred the hobby in them to learn about D&D. Next thing I know, its about 3 years later and I have 3 different campaigns going on among different groups of people now.
Of course not everyone will be as lucky as I have been, and in downtimes I have sought other means to finding random games to jump into online. But I guess the moral of the story is, if you have a twinge of passion about getting involved in this type of hobby, the best thing you can do is put yourself out there. Below you will find all of the resources that I talked about and some more that will hopefully help anyone find players either in their community or at least over the internet to play with. Happy Gaming!
Meetup.com -Find Meetups so you can do more of what matters to you. Or create your own group and meet people near you who share your interests. (Note from Aurican’s Lair- I used this to find game shops in my area that hosted weekly games. Other groups host private events as well.)
(Facebook) Tabletop One Shot Group– a group of +6000 members who regularly host games through Google Hangouts or other means. Games scheduled in the events section daily.
Roll 20 – is a suite of easy-to-use digital tools that expand pen-and-paper gameplay. Whether you play online via our virtual tabletop or in person utilizing our character sheet and dice rolling application, Roll20 will save you time and help you focus on enhancing your favorite parts of tabletop gaming.
Google +Tabletop Roleplaying Group – a group of 20,000 members who regularly look for new players and have group discussions on everything RPG.
Nearbygamers.com – for people who play RPGs, CCGs, TCGs, wargames, board games — any tabletop game where you need a live human on the other side of a table if you want to play. Browse to find someone to start a game with, or sign up to put your own marker in the map.
RPG Game Find – Finding a role-playing game or group in your local area used to
be a daunting task but not anymore! We help connect players with new or existing role-playing games in your local area. This site focuses on all types of roleplaying (rpg) games, rpg & fantasy card games, RPG board games, Live Action Roleplay (LARP) and miniature games!