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bigbear bailey
08-02-2012, 17:38
My local gamers are having a major issue that we need outword help from. We have skill sets that bounce all over the place and it's scaring people off. I guess the best way to explain it is seeing our number of players below.

Toury players (they make lists maximizing on on their codex strs)
2 of them

fluff players (play to army background, while still trying to maintain str)
1 of them

balanced players (make all comers list, while not spaming)
1 of them

New players (just started this last year or have played with one other person at home for 10 years, thus resulting in not knowing the game as a whole)
5 of them

No idea what they are doing players (played 10 years and doesn't know the STR of a space marine :wtf:)
1 (at least lol) of them

The main issue with all this is that we honestly don't know what to do anymore. We're having less and less turn outs. I can tell that people are honestly scared to play the vets anymore. I will say that we have decided to start something to make others come around more (giving away scenic bases once a month) and to make them more competitive (One of the tourny guess has laid down a challenge that once per month play him and if you win he will paint a squad or a tank of your choice if you win!) but is there anything else you have noticed that helps. We can't be the only group with this problem!

meddy
08-02-2012, 18:27
Try and get the tourny players to write afew balanced lists aswell? Seems like the obvious answer

Konovalev
08-02-2012, 18:49
Get the fluff player to step it up and at least play on the level of the balance player.

Get the tourney players to come down to the level of the balance player when they are not facing eachother / or anyone else who wants to challenge themselves.

Reign in the new players so they can learn the rules and develop lists that don't consist of random hodgepodges of units that don't go together.

Convince the clueless player(s) to run lists designed by the tourney players / optimised net lists so they can learn where their armies strengths are and eventually break out and think for themselves.

Get the balance list player to stop handicapping himself for the sake of some naive middleground honor and make a list he actually wants to run rather than a hipster counter-culture list.

NixonAsADaemonPrince
08-02-2012, 18:51
What Konovalev said, my thoughts as well.

Easy E
08-02-2012, 20:22
If this is a club, you need to have a club mission statement and core values that all participants then agree to.

For example:
Mission: To expand and build upon the GW hobby for all members, new adn existing.
Values:
Fun- Both players should discuss what they want from the game before playing, and trying to meet the others expectatiosn for a good game.
Sportsmanship- All players will act in a way becoming of adults and in a manner of friendship.
Teamwork- The club will work together as a whoel to ensure the growth and expansion of the club, and to act in a way befitting our mission and values.

Obviously, those are just examples and could be reworded/replaced as needed. Once you have set a level for all members to play by, it will become easier to regulate the expectations of all involved.

Bunnahabhain
09-02-2012, 14:42
If this is a club, you need to have a club mission statement and core values that all participants then agree to.

This is the first time I have ever seen a mission statement that is sensible, worth writing down, and jargon free- and I agree with it.

One thing you can do to try and get players at different levels to work better is to change settings between weeks. For example, one week you could ask all players to bring very fluffy lists, the next as competitive as they can, the next have open, the next have a combat patrol night, etc, etc. It is just another way of managing expectations.

Morty
09-02-2012, 15:09
I have to agree to all the above. as a vet player myself it can be come a chalenge just to find someone willing to play.

the locale club I go to has reguler events aimmed at encoriging newbies

Try orgnising an event baced on combat patrol rather than full 40K. this smallers sized game should chalenge you Turny stile players to come up with the fluf to suport there force (since fluff is more important then ability in CP), your newbies to learn tatics with out the presher of mass affect on there games and tryout new armies with out going all out.

Another thing is to encourage your vets to be more open to teaching the newbies how to play, I try, realy I do. :)

Try geting 2 good players together with compatent pre agreed lists and Force them to do a demo game vs each other while exsplaning 'WHY' they are doing what they are doing rather than just playing the game (it's suprising how much your own game improves whene you do this.)

Latro_
09-02-2012, 15:20
play necromunda

:chrome:

Duce
09-02-2012, 15:24
Mixed doubles tournament, means more socalising, more variety, and if you keep he pints to say 875 a person they can't build too much in the way of powerhouse lists if they have to have 1HQ and 2 troops still.

bigbear bailey
14-02-2012, 06:37
Thanks for all the replys. I will do some of the mentioned things to see if things improve.

Here is another question for you all. In my local area we just now got a store for GW products. With that in mind there are a lot of gammers in the local area that won't come out of their closets to make a real community (something I have had in other cities). Is there anyway that you all know of that can get them to come to more things, or should we just start throwing in cash to get prized for people for effents!

Easy E
14-02-2012, 17:09
You have to make your events super inviting. Essentially, you have to make sure your club members talk to every single one of the new players in a positive way. Remind them, the whole point of hte exercise is not to win, but to get more people playing the game.

The winning comes later. :)

DEADMARSH
14-02-2012, 17:58
Make your events worth attending.

I don't mean for that to sound dismissive. I tried to re-invigorate my old club's events four or five years ago now. We knew there were people out there who played that didn't turn up to the club, so we all sat around and tried to figure out how to get people in the area more involved and all. Never did come up with anything, to be honest.

Now I've pretty well dropped out due to a combination of things- namely that my favorite opponent doesn't play much at all anymore, work, and fatherly duties.

Look at it this way- you mentioned that when you lived in other cities, you were part of that community. Why? What made the community important to you? Why did you want to be a part of it? Try and emulate those things in your current club and maybe some folks will start turning up.

First and foremost- make sure people know about your club. I'd been buying GW products for two or three years before I ever showed up at a club function. There were flyers posted and stuff, sure, but be sure that people outside of the club know that it's ok for them to show up at the club events.

gsmailes
14-02-2012, 22:15
Unfortunately the tournaments are a little intimidating....especially to the novice, like me. I prefer a relaxed format, usually with teams....that allows for a more experience player to help the less knowledgeable player to get through the mechanics of the game. And nobody likes it when a player has a list that destroys everything and takes away any hope of survival from the opposing player.

S_A_T_S
15-02-2012, 00:22
I have to confess, I often enjoy playing tourney forces as it gives me a challenge. If I lose, he had a tweaked, minmaxed army. If I win, I just messed with a tourney players mind as he couldn't beat a guy with a fluffed theme list in a pick up game. It's also good to compare how much you managed to finish off when you end the game, as it can help for the future. A while ago I played Grey Knights belonging to a tourney player, gave them quite a good run for their money as all he had left at the end was land raiders, and I had a thunder hammer death company marine in combat with one for 2-3 rounds of combat. I need more anti-tank, or less death company...

Back on track. I agree with the small, restricted-force suggestions. It means n00bs don't have to own/paint much, power players can't go too op. Maybe make it into a drop in/drop out campaign, order vs destruction rather than all vs all. Try to keep your players split by experience (even numbers each side). In a club I used to be in, we occasionally organised challenge scenarios - a big themed mission with a load of special rules, who can complete in least turns? The 2 i remember were "Destroy Santa Claws" (Abbadon painted red using the barroom brawl floor sections from white dwarf, in a large fortress, attacking and defending gear taken from necromunda book and modded from the old WFB siege rules, grots as elves, juggernaughts as reindeer) and "Hunt the Lictor" (one organiser GM, players choose 1 squad and 1 HQ to restricted points limit, 4x4 board covered in trees + one or 2 features, other player/organiser has a deathleaper/lictor, non-nid player has to leave the room while lictor makes his move monitored by GM, lictor cannot be seen until within certain distance - auspex or double Int - and can disappear if it gets out of that range. Hit and run horror!!!).

Basically, something fun that gets everybody on the same level and puts a little more randomness and luck into a game.

Lunk
15-02-2012, 00:34
I belonged to a club years and years ago that had other standards besides winning. Best General (won the most) was third or 4th place. Best painted was second place, with Player you want to play against being first place(done by votes), there was also a most improved new player honorary award, and that guy would feel like a hero all month because all the veterans wanted to play him for pick up games. We did these once every 2 months for 40k, with fantasy being the other month. Once a year we did a War Master tourney, hard core bring your killer list, and the winner kept that title all year. The other Saturdays we did paint days, best fluff list, small armies or teams.
But the focus was never on who won the most games.

movin_pics
15-02-2012, 01:07
i agree with the opinion of smaller game size, it injects alot of fun back in the game and being able to fit a few games into an evening really helps with fitting your games around real life commitments.
I dont think the prize (apart from bragging rights) incentives is really a good thing in the long run, people want to play with friends or just friendly people and have a laugh, do you really want to attract guys who see your club as a means to free stuff?

Just realised.... run a narrative/map campaign,
the vets can still compete
the fluff player can... well its his element really
the balanced player can still get games in
and the newer kids/guys can still get wins in (even numbers of new and old players i'd assume) whilst getting the odd educational back hand
win/win ;)

3 0f 6
15-02-2012, 08:10
play necromunda

:chrome:

Gotta agree with this!

Chapters Unwritten
15-02-2012, 15:14
All of these are nice ideas, but in reality I find they do not work. My club has a mix of player skill level as well and it's always a struggle. It works out well for us because we have a centralized area of communication, but the different skill levels are always tiresome for me as a club leader. The new guys get discouraged easily, the old guys don't really think about what it was like when they were learning and barrage people with numbers or complex concepts. Ironically, it's the hardlisters who have the best attitudes, as they usually are the ones who are most willing to explain

What I have learned in my time:
- Doing a lowest common denominator thing might help but in my experience telling people they can use much less of the army they spent months buying, building and painting rarely goes over well. A better idea would be to have people start new armies all at the same time, ensuring they are building up accordingly with one another.

- I have battled this problem many times and one of the things I think would be helpful is simple awareness of who is doing what level of play. I tried to implement a sign in sheet but you are going to find that a lot of the older guys are actually pretty ashamed of the hobby and will refuse to commit to anything that records their involvement in it in any way that is not 100% anonymous. My group refused to sign in but had no problem with me taking attendance (so long as it was never written down). Needless to say the idea never materialized; being able to keep no record, either option was worthless.

- A club mission statement helps greatly. Part of the biggest problem with this game and the people who play it is that they all carry an obnoxiously specific agenda. Your best bet is to clearly specify what kind of people you want to have, and to facilitate things those people enjoy. You have mostly new people, which is good; you have an opportunity to mold them into an ideal player for your group. An escalation league would probably be a great way to raise enthusiasm for this sort of group.

Charistoph
15-02-2012, 20:19
My LGS usually runs 2 tournaments a month, with regular gaming on weeknights, mostly on Friday. 1 tournament is the standard 1750 format, while the other one is smaller, but with odd FOC requirements. This weekend, it's 1000 points with only 2 HQ & 2 HS required.

They've done progression leagues, Doubles every other month, Tanksgiving (only Tanks and Monstrous Creatures apply), Z-Day (40K HQs vs hordes of zombies, plague marines, and Typhus), and there's been talk about a race track game, along with a whole lot of themed stuff.

Another thing they don't do is tolerate a-holes. We have a good mix, too, but the staff encourages all types of thinking and helps people get the most out of what they have.

One thought I had was a kind of Biggest Loser type of contest. Each of the tourney players takes 2-3 people under their wing to help them prepare. On tournament day, they don't participate directly, but walk the tables guiding their teams to victory.

Chapters Unwritten
16-02-2012, 06:26
All that is great but a group that does not already actively seek to cooperate will ensure any of those great ideas fails utterly. You have to find a way to get everyone on the same page first, even if that means making it less hospitable to some of those on the fringes of what you want to encourage.

Charistoph
16-02-2012, 06:38
All that is great but a group that does not already actively seek to cooperate will ensure any of those great ideas fails utterly. You have to find a way to get everyone on the same page first, even if that means making it less hospitable to some of those on the fringes of what you want to encourage.

Maybe it will, maybe it won't. You don't know until the attempt is made. People can surprise you. Considering every idea as doomed to failure do to the disparity of the group just means that you do nothing and the group WILL fail if something doesn't happen.

Heck, if nothing else, getting ideas from the group gets their buy in, and increases the likelihood of group participation.

Latro_
16-02-2012, 10:37
seriously give Necromunda a go. It starts off with very basic gangs on so no overpowerment, its a different rules set but easy to pickup, its a ton of fun, its cheap to get into and it can be played multiplayer as be even better.

Would definitely recharge your group I bet. I'v seen games nights go from a few players to tripple in size because necro brings in the old fans of it and new people like it since its so cheap, after you finish a campaign you can guarantee a few of these will stick around to get back into 40k

The Devourer
16-02-2012, 13:39
Encourage people to all play at a balanced level as this is an acceptable compromise for most players. Since people obviously want to focus on different things try running a few tournaments for the competitive players and campaigns for the fluff ones.

Garvey
16-02-2012, 15:00
My advise would be to get the club involved in the background of the game, and play a campaign as well as a club tournament. This will get your veterans to think about their lists in a different way, that will present some new challenges for them. It will also interest and engergise your new players. If some are just starting Armies, make it an escalation style campaign. Also, keep in mind all people have other events going on in their lives. It will be quite a challenge for all of you to get together at the same time. So plan events where the club can get together as a seriers of even smaller groups that reports results back to the Club Organizer. Our club tourny got much better attendence, when we gave all players a week to get a game in with their opponent, and let the tourny go on for three to four weeks. Focus your reward efforts on Sportsmanship and Group Participation, limit the rewards for winning to bragging rights and Name Recognition. In our club, we have a single traveling trophy, the reward for winning our club tourny is to have your named added to it and you keep it until someone else wins. Also have club gatherings to paint Armies, build terrain, and other hobby related events.

Chapters Unwritten
16-02-2012, 16:52
Maybe it will, maybe it won't. You don't know until the attempt is made. People can surprise you. Considering every idea as doomed to failure do to the disparity of the group just means that you do nothing and the group WILL fail if something doesn't happen.

Heck, if nothing else, getting ideas from the group gets their buy in, and increases the likelihood of group participation.He doesn't have a group. He has several. They will be xenophobic by nature. The only hope is to appeal to the lowest common denominator. A fluff-driven Apocalypse mega battle might be a good place to try and break the ice. No one can make a tournament list that will survive in Apocalypse. lol

Charistoph
16-02-2012, 20:52
He doesn't have a group. He has several. They will be xenophobic by nature. The only hope is to appeal to the lowest common denominator. A fluff-driven Apocalypse mega battle might be a good place to try and break the ice. No one can make a tournament list that will survive in Apocalypse. lol

You keep making a lot of assumptions here.

He has a group populated by several subgroups that he's trying to get in sync. Apocalypse is great for those who have a collection, but most people I know would feel overwhelmed if I only had a squad box or Battleforce built up.

You don't always have to play to a LCD, but try to mix things up to encourage the LCDs to grow to the point where the vets are comfortable and a little challenged. That's why having multiple regularly scheduled game types is beneficial to a club's growth.

madprophet
17-02-2012, 10:29
I think it comes down to what are your hobbies?

I realize this sounds weird, but it's a valid question. The Tourney players' hobby is building the most effective lists and the tactical challenge of the game. The fluff-bunny's hobby is telling stories with his army. The balance player's hobby is playing games. The old timer who doesn't know the Str of a Space Marine's hobby is probably modeling and painting.

Instead of seeing this as a problem, look at these folks as resources for the newbies. The Tourney players can run mixed doubles games and teach tactics and list building techniques to the other gamers and at the same time hone their own skills for tournament play. By working with the other players they will learn how other armies work while improving the level of play by the newbies who in turn will do better against the vets.

The fluff-bunny can run a fluff clinic and help the newbies immerse themselves in the 40k universe - maybe even getting the tourney guys into the spirit of things. Fluffy doesn't mean weak. I have a very fluffy IG force that is the terror of the local gamers' guild but I rarely lack opponents because a) people like my heavily converted army, b) I try to be pleasant company and c) I am willing to offer advice to opponents.

The balance player would be a good choice to run demo games and help recruit new members. He can even show the Vets how to balance scenarios against the newbies so they can still bring their A game while giving the less experienced players a sporting chance to win.

The "what's the Str of a Space Marine?" fellow is probably a modeler more than a gamer. He can show the others cool conversion techniques, maybe even run a clinic. If he's more into just socializing, he can organize non-game club events like "Painting Nights" or "Bitz Swap Nights". How about terrain building nights? Show members how to make army appropriate terrain for themselves or work on a larger, club terrain project.

Modeling and Bitz swap events can be great club building exercises. In the winter months, I spend a lot more time modeling than playing. I have a heavily converted Ork army on my work bench right now which should be table ready in about a month. I also have been working on guard conversions for my main army (Ogryns converted out of Battlemasters game Ogres, a platoon of female greatcoats made from the lower half of Wargames Factory Shocktroops heavy weapons troopers, torsos & heads from Laughing Monk, and Cadian arms, Cossack rough riders made from doing a torso swap from GW rough riders, hairy heads and assorted cadian bitz.)

Easy E
17-02-2012, 14:34
yeah, make sure to emphasize other aspects of the hobby other than just games during club times.

bigbear bailey
19-02-2012, 13:28
This is a great thread, which had honestly helped me a LOT with our group. I figure I might as well ask some more questions to you Gray beards to see what else we can do.

Our "group" meets once a week with a local gaming guild in a bowel alley reception hall for 4 hours every Sunday (as it's free for them due to ties to the owner) so that's where we play most of our games as we don't really have another central location to play. We just had a local store start to carry 40k butthe owner has no idea about 40K (I have tried to teach him but he doesn't seem to care), is a jerk, and wants to charge us crazy prices to play there, so we have decided to look else where for a gaming space. With that in mind I have a few questions.

1) How many times a month is worth meeting at the new spot? Once a week, or twice a month?
2) Any ideas where to look? Been thinking about some churches as our group is definitly a good thing for youngsters to get into (yeah it cost cash but it's not doing drugs and stealing things ha ha).
3) How important is a forum? We have a facebook page, but people are wierd about facebook for some reason. Anyone else noticed that?
4) Anything else anyone can add for a new forming Club?

madprophet
19-02-2012, 13:59
Our "group" meets once a week with a local gaming guild in a bowel alley reception hall for 4 hours every Sunday (as it's free for them due to ties to the owner) so that's where we play most of our games as we don't really have another central location to play.
Sounds okay - but can you store terrain or other stuff there? If not, it's sort of a pain to truck it in. Check with local colleges which might have gaming groups.


We just had a local store start to carry 40k but the owner has no idea about 40K (I have tried to teach him but he doesn't seem to care), is a jerk, and wants to charge us crazy prices to play there, so we have decided to look else where for a gaming space.
See, he really is being dumb - our FLGS let's us play in-store for free and even gives us a small discount. In return, we advertise for them and agree to buy 80% of our stuff from them.


1) How many times a month is worth meeting at the new spot? Once a week, or twice a month?
Depends on your groups schedules - take a vote.


2) Any ideas where to look? Been thinking about some churches as our group is definitly a good thing for youngsters to get into (yeah it cost cash but it's not doing drugs and stealing things ha ha).
Churches/Synagogues, college game groups, American Legion halls, libraries, school-based clubs, craft stores...


3) How important is a forum? We have a facebook page, but people are wierd about facebook for some reason. Anyone else noticed that?
I never found it to be that useful. Email contact to announce events usually suffices. FB is also useful.


4) Anything else anyone can add for a new forming Club?
A newsletter (website or email) is useful - so is the social aspect, do things together other than just gaming.

mattschuur
19-02-2012, 15:37
In my experience it all depends upon the veterans. If you have veterans who are WAAC all the time, you're going to have problems. At our store we run leagues and it is an unwritten rule that WAAC lists are not accepted. You can play them, but one of the vets will stomp you to prove a point or if that doesn't work peer pressure to try a more balanced force is used.
It only ever failed once. That guy I flat told him I was going to beat him with a balanced army, he took double last triple Oblit spam. I beat him but he didn't get the message. Thankfully he went to warmachine. My point is it's up to the vets to dictate 'policy'. If the vets have no other concern but to crush any and all opponents, your club will suffer. A lot of the ideas I've seen here like the mission statement and "fluff" nights are great idea's, but it's up to the vets to enact them to be successful.
Matt Schuur

Tarian
19-02-2012, 17:04
Agreed, a lot of the pressure is on the Veterans. If you know that a few of them are "nice" players. (i.e. good, but willing to give the other guy a chance) ask if they're willing to go against the new people first to give them something besides a curb-stomping. Another thing we did was "Veteran's Night" where when we played, it's always be a Veteran vs. a New Player, and the Vet would explain their moves, what the new player could do to watch out for it, etc.

And at my FLGS, we get a discount and free storage/space and in return, we buy our stuff there to help keep our store open, so shutting that off is silly.

Hokiecow
20-02-2012, 11:52
Have you talked to the players that have stopped playing to find out why they stopped coming? Reasons might vary but it will help you come up with an effective solution.

bigbear bailey
20-02-2012, 12:27
We have talked to them off and on about what the players that stopped coming to the club said and this is what they said.

1) The basement boweling alley isn't a great meeting place. It stinks, a lot of the guild members we meet with are wierd, and it cost to play there with no benifit (1 buck per day).

2) Vet players play to hard to win. (which we have started to go a lot easier on them latly.

3) No reason to show. Meaning they could just play at home and be comfortable, save gas, and not have to deal with guild wierdos.

I think the main problem here comes to two things. One, the place we play at sucks. Two there needs to be more insentive to play (free give outs, better terrain, and tournys that stop focusing on winning so much).

This post has been a big help guys, so thanks a lot. I am going to work on some things around here with our club and I will keep you all posted!

Necr0n
20-02-2012, 14:58
Let me throw my 5 cents. My gaming group consists of mainly 5 close friends. We usually played at our houses (ofc without "real" terrain). Eventually, we got bored of playin against the same people with the same armies and tactics again and again and some of us started playing second or third armies. Eventually, that got boring too, and now we just can't stop goin to our FLGS. Playin with different people, other armies, other thoughts. Talking about armies, tactics, each one giving their opinion, playing little tournies every month and bigger ones ever 2-3 months.

A lot of times, we go there to paint, model, glue and generally build armies. Talkin colours, painting schemes, conversions, using each other's Bits for more conversions.

Other times, we just go there to talk! It's very important that the FLGS owner, the vets and the people who hang out there most are nice. We have fun, even when not talking about 40k. Generally, we like to go there just to see our now new friends! Ofc, my FLGS is mainly a 40k group with terrain/tables mostly for 40k and almost everyone in there can play so we don't have such problems.

Generally, mostly it's the people. If you make a nice friendly environment and you have fun together people will come.

Garvey
20-02-2012, 15:59
We have talked to them off and on about what the players that stopped coming to the club said and this is what they said.

1) The basement boweling alley isn't a great meeting place. It stinks, a lot of the guild members we meet with are wierd, and it cost to play there with no benifit (1 buck per day).!

Venue can make a huge difference. It is a shame the new LGS is not supportive, but there are low-cost (or no-cost) alternatives. First look into your local library, many offer some small meeting rooms or study rooms available for free on a first come, first serve basis. Many are large enough for a table or two. Churches or schools may also have some rooms available for use at reasonable or no cost. When the weather is nice, consider a public park, and have a grill-out, too.




2) Vet players play to hard to win. (which we have started to go a lot easier on them latly.!

There have been many different ideas posted on this topic already, all seem good.



3) No reason to show. Meaning they could just play at home and be comfortable, save gas, and not have to deal with guild wierdos.

I think the main problem here comes to two things. One, the place we play at sucks. Two there needs to be more insentive to play (free give outs, better terrain, and tournys that stop focusing on winning so much).

This post has been a big help guys, so thanks a lot. I am going to work on some things around here with our club and I will keep you all posted!

This seems to be the crux of the problem. By "Guild Wierdos" I am assuming you mean the veteran players, and if this is the case, it is not just a problem of the veterens being to hard on the noobies. If your veterans do not have enough social graces to make a new member feel comfortable as part of the group, they will continue to drive people away.

If your veteran players are just too creepy (and/or smelly) to meet and greet with some new players, your best option may be to get rid of the veterans, and form a new group. This is obliviously the most extreme course of action, but it may be the only one available. If someone at a gathering makes you feel uncomfortable no amount of incentives would convince you to attend. You must remember, this is first and foremost a SOCIAL hobby.

It might help to have a Meet & Greet meeting. A gathering at a new location you are thinking of having your games. Have everyone come to be introduced to each other, & see the location. Serve some snacks and beverages, have people bring the a few models they are proud of and some of their favorite lists. While this is going on, you can gauge everyone's social abilities and solve some of the "Guild Weirdo" problems, before it's time to throw dice.

Gop
21-02-2012, 02:37
I reckon that idea about having a doubles tournament was good. One vet and one n00b are a team, each with half the points.

Preferably sharing all the units ie. everyone gets a heavy unit, a troop etc. The idea is the vet coaches the n00b and explains why something is happening and the game plan etc.

The n00b would probably learn a lot and be less intimidated by the vet player because they've actually played before, even if not against each other.

Easy E
21-02-2012, 19:32
It sounds like you have some of the basic ideas, now it is a matter of implementing them....

1. Have an official Meet and Greet.
- Advertise it at local FLGS and online
-Intros with a quick Ice breaker- For example: Name, Games and armies played, and something you like besides wargaming
-Social time with light beverages, snacks, and soothing background music. About 15 minutes to 30 minutes. The Vets must be talk to new people.
-Official Club stuff; reading of the mission statement, upcoming events, and club topics

2. Find a decent venue, preferably one with good ventilation and parking. Free is best, but if not then you can charge members a small fee.

3. Do things other than Tournies and play games such as:
- Terrain night- everyone makes terrain for the club to use
- Painting night with a small competition at the end
- Narrative scenario battle night
- Movie and Popcorn night
- Board game night
-Non-GW game night
-Specialist game night
You get the idea.

4. Give away small items such as stuff from the Dollar Store to reward the behaviors you want to continue. I.e. team building, most figures painted, best movie quip, funniest joke, etc. This will create memories that will incentize behavior.

5. Keep it clean figuratively and literally.

Chapters Unwritten
21-02-2012, 20:39
There is a lot of advice here and I'll tell you, I've seen a lot in my time. I'm a youngun, but as a leader of a successful group my first step starting out was to find out just what in the blue hell all the other groups were doing wrong, and there was quite a lot.

Some folks on here have said that a forum is not helpful. This is incorrect. Our forum is probably the most successful part of our club. People love talking about this game and giving them a forum to communicate makes it so that when they arrive to play for the weekly/bi-monthly/monthly session, they aren't showing up to a room full of strangers. That feeling is good, but it has an even better byproduct - people will feel a lot less like the other folks are intruding or a nuisance.

You have a space, but the problem usually isn't the space. I've found people are willing to play just about anywhere, as long as the company you keep is worth being around. That bowling alley bit sounds tough but there are things you can try and do to improve the venue - one of which should be having nice tables. If you have a nice table, people are going to want to play on it regardless.

Activities and everything work well but it's hard to drum up enthusiasm. Even my successful club requires me to use all my knowledge of marketing to the fullest; if I do something that doesn't have a huge amount of enthusiasm pumped out of it, then there's not going to be much of a turnout, regardless. This is really hard but the forum makes a huge difference, as I can contact everyone at once on it.

madprophet
21-02-2012, 20:53
It sounds like you have some of the basic ideas, now it is a matter of implementing them....

1. Have an official Meet and Greet.
- Advertise it at local FLGS and online
-Intros with a quick Ice breaker- For example: Name, Games and armies played, and something you like besides wargaming
-Social time with light beverages, snacks, and soothing background music. About 15 minutes to 30 minutes. The Vets must be talk to new people.
-Official Club stuff; reading of the mission statement, upcoming events, and club topics

2. Find a decent venue, preferably one with good ventilation and parking. Free is best, but if not then you can charge members a small fee.

3. Do things other than Tournies and play games such as:
- Terrain night- everyone makes terrain for the club to use
- Painting night with a small competition at the end
- Narrative scenario battle night
- Movie and Popcorn night
- Board game night
-Non-GW game night
-Specialist game night
You get the idea.

4. Give away small items such as stuff from the Dollar Store to reward the behaviors you want to continue. I.e. team building, most figures painted, best movie quip, funniest joke, etc. This will create memories that will incentize behavior.

5. Keep it clean figuratively and literally.

This is excellent advice - I would also suggest a small annual fee - say $12 ($1 a month) which should be used for some trophies/plaques (shop around - our group rarely pays more than $5 per trophy) and other prizes (gift cards, minis, etc.) and some paints, glue, brushes, files, etc. for a club painting bar. I would also charge small fees (1-5 bucks) for a few (no more than 4/year) tournaments with a really big trophy at stake and take some of the proceeds and have club t-shirts, pins, tourney ribbons (military campaign style ribbons in assorted patterns and colors can be had cheap). These sort of gimmes are great for club building.

You mentioned "club weirdos" - can you elaborate? What makes them weirdos? Are they just socially awkward? Do they have hygiene issues? Are they just over-the-top fanboys (think Igor from Dork Tower)? Depending on the problem, there may be a solution.

Pain4life
21-02-2012, 23:21
I also have a local club outside of GW stores, however recently (past 6 months) I have stopped attending, I will give my reasons here and also some of things I think the club does well and hope it helps you out a little.

What the club does well:
Has a close relationship with the GW store (half a block away)

Gw holds newbie sessions for total beginners every sunday, the players attend 3 - 4 times to get the basics and then a GW staff member will personally bring the newly "graduated" class over to the club and introduce everyone, this helps keep new player comming and also the challenges

Has just started a membership scheme whereby you pay $12 a year and you get 50% off entry fee, custom club dice with the logo on, a club t-shirt and a club membership card which allows you 25% off anything on the menu at the cafe down the block any day of the year

My personal reasons for leaving:
There are 4 - 5 players there who are tourney "power" gamers and they never ever dail there list back, so for people like me who want fun or for the new guys playing them is no fun and is like a chour (let them play each other and tourneys this way but at least have a "down time" list to play socialy)

I'm not sure this 1 alpplies to you but I add it anyway, I seem to find that becasue i'm new and lack and real understanding of fluff ect I seem to be the a"& end of everyones jokes, on more than a few occasions I have overheard people slagging me off of talking behind my back (not a good way to make someone feel welcome)

bigbear bailey
22-02-2012, 08:41
Hey all, here are some off the answers to your comments.

1) We are part of a "guild", a group that has been here in the area forever that charges a dollar every sunday to play at the Boweling alley basement and uses the money to run a Con once a year and donate to chairty (1k total last year). The guild it's self plays a ton of board games, D&D, and other nerd things. The main issue is that a lot of these people are, well, wierd. You all know the type. Huge mega nerds that are your average D&D players ha ha.

2) GREAT NEWS!!! There is a BRAND new gamming store that opened up (by buying out one that failed) and are opening up shop there. I talked to the guy and he said we could play there one Saturdays! He doesn't carry GW stuff but that's not a issue.

3) I have bought things from a buddy for years now for 30% off from where I used to live and he's agreed to help me out with products. This will be a member only thing, which will increase people playing with our club!

4) I am now starting to get all of this organized, and honestly I don't think it would have been so easy with out all of your help. Thanks a lot guys and I will keep you posted on what happens!

5) Is there some kind of page here for local gaming clubs to advertize?

Garvey
22-02-2012, 15:12
Fantastic! Keep up the good work! And, keep in mind with your new group: Sportsmanship is more important than winning!

Easy E
22-02-2012, 15:27
Yeah, don;t make your club completely free. If you do not charge, then people will see it as having NO value.

I like the idea that your membership gets you a club card, a shirt, and custom dice. Great idea whoever came up with that.

The number 1 reason I stopped going to one of my locla clubs was that it was way too cliche. The same people would only ever talk to each other, and it just wasn't that welcoming as a noob. it was like being a third wheel all the time. Who wants that feeling?

You might want to designate a few guys at every meeting as the "Host". Their job for the club is to make sure to take the time to talk to any newbies who show up and find out about them and their interests. This could be an elected post of the club, or rotating. I have seen successful business networking groups use this model.

bigbear bailey
22-02-2012, 21:53
I think they should sticky this some where for starting a new club, it's really good advise and has helped me ten fold!