PnP D&D and other games for people with full time jobs

After high-school, after college, when you have a full time job and maybe even a family, how may of you who like PnP RPG games still are able to find a group of people to play once a week / month?

Over the years I find a lot of people with fond memories of these games and a desire to play them, but I can never find a group of them who can actually play with any regularly.

People have conflicting schedules, can’t commit the time, or simply to many people “can’t make it this Sunday…” and after a few sessions everyone gives up because only 3 of the purposed 8 players every show up.

I have given up for now, but I am wondering how many people out there actually manage to pull this off. Am I going to have to wait until all my ‘peers’ are retired to before I can participate in a regular PnP RPG group again?

I’ve had similar problems, DeepT. I’ve managed to have some games go for a few months or so, but inevitably one or more of the group members gets busy, and the game falls apart. Then when the group wants to start a new one, even if it’s with the same people, we have to overcome everyone’s inertia to get the ball rolling again.

I get together with my old high school gaming group every Friday. We manage to keep the date about 90% of the time.

I have a wife and a child and a weekly DnD group :)

It’s basically the same core group of guys I started gaming with at 16. I was the young pup in the group way back then. Every once in awhile a guy invites a friend to try it out and we get a new player, but on the flipside every once in awhile someone gets tired of it and leaves. But hey, there are still three of us that were there the first time I ever sat down at a table to play DnD.

Anymore, most of us use it as an excuse to get away from the wives and kids for a nite and just have some guy time. The actual DnD played is fairly simplistic hack and slash stuff and we only spend 60-70% of the time actually playing. The rest is spent on just chatting or playing PS2 waiting for someone to show up late or whatnot. It’s a good time tho so I suspect it will keep going for years.

Hmm i have a two weekly schedule… i am the gm as and we have 6 players so that if one isnt able to attend it makes “poof” and he is away or “poof” he is there. We are playing from roughly 6pm to 11pm. We are playing with that schedule for a few years with only 3 player changes…

It probably has a lot to do where you live as to how difficult it is to find games. If you live in a highly populated area with a lot of high-tech jobs, it’s pretty easy to find gaming groups.

Heh, I tend to have more fun with absent players. I say the character is still along with the party but can’t participate in any fights or party decisions because they have a horrible case of Gruumsh’s revenge (like Montezuma’s revenge, but more DnD-ish) or maybe a painful rash on their naughties or perhaps a bad muscle pull from excessive acts of onanism.

Plus absent players will find their characters auto-consented to loaning gold to other party members, and have to take the parties word on what their split of the treasure was :)

We go every other week and we’ve been going for about 3-4 years now. The guy who originally started the group moved away, another guy got a job where he works weekends, and we dwindled down to 4 of us.

With a GM and 3 players, if any of us can’t make it, we cancel and see when the next time is that we can get together, so we all started actively hunting for new players. We alternate campaigns and GMs, so each campaign actually only plays once a month. I got another guy to come into one campaign, because he thought he could do once a month, and the guy who moved away is actually moving back in the spring!

So we’ll be up to 5 players and a GM in one campaign and 4 players in the other. We’re still looking for other players, so if anyone is in the Boston area and once to play one or two Sundays a month (12-7pm), send me a PM!

Yeah that would be good for a laugh or two but overall my system works in praxis best, because more often than not we arent a complete party. If your interested(even if not;) ) our party rules are:

If you are not there you dont get XP.
If you are not there you are not there.
If you are there but you where away for a longer time your xp rises to 1/2 of the highest player or your old count whichever is higher.
You go with a poof and you come with a poof.
We use only the core books.

Used to be the character would just go “poof” until the player returned. Nowadays we try to play games that allow “ensemble” play - characters can get swapped in and out, people can play other people’s characters if necessary, or we can find in-game reasons for their absences. For D&D that sort of thing isn’t really necessary, but when we play a game that has a stronger story, it’s very helpful.

I think this is the key bit of your post. You have a regular group that could stay regular because the core has never moved on to something else, or just simply moved.

You’re a lucky man who can keep the same circle of friends from high school.

And your policy on absent players would keep me coming back. My share of the loot should stay mine, dammit.


Or as we liked to put it in my old game, they were in the sheepfucker bag.

Technically, onanism is not masturbation, though it’s become synonymous with the word. You need a partner for true onanism. Of course, there’s the rest of the party to consider…

We went for a few months now without playing, but it looks like we’ll be starting back up in a week or so. Fridays here I come.

I like PnP (whatever system) for the comradeship, not the actual game itself. Don’t get me wrong, I love the numbers and the role playing, but it’s really more about just getting together and hanging out.

I found my group by going to a local gaming shop, starting to play there and then getting invited to play with most of them at a house. Been playing with this group for about 3 or 4 years now.

That pretty much sums up my group. We play the Stargate RPG system, which works well for us. But really, it’s a night away from the wives where we can act like dorky men.

We’re pretty inclusive of all geeks. If you’re wife wants to play, more power to her. My wife plays when she can and a friend’s girlfriend plays often. And we have one or two semi-regular girls that play.

If you like PnP, you’re good with us. Unless you like to quit at 11PM. We have a guy like that. We don’t invite him anymore. That’s absolute crazy talk when we usually don’t start until 7 or 8.

I play 2 games once a week (both with mostly different groups of people). 4-5 players max per group and if someone can’t make it that night, someone else plays the character, usually with humourous results (if that player does something to get that character killed, too fucking bad).

We start at 6:00 and end at 10:00, 10:30 at the absolute latest. The campaigns we play are usually broken up into 2-3 month long chapters, with different campaigns/systems rotating in that time, so we get to play a nice range of games and anyone that wants to GM can.

Mostly, gaming is just a night out sorta thing, and in that four hours, there’s maybe 2 hours or so of actual pnp-gaming. We play in a comics/games shop so there’s lots of other board games to play if we don’t feel like doing any pnp’ing or if someone doesn’t show up.

Oh yeah, this is the same core group I’ve been playing with since junior high (I’m the youngest in the group). Everyone I play with has wives/children/girlfriends and other commitments, so there’s an understanding that not everyone can make every session.

My wife does play RPGs, but she realizes I need a social circle that she’s not a part of.

Our groups games once a week. We alternate games each week, and we have two different peeps with kids who play in one game but not the other. Right now we’re playing a level 6 D&D Eberron campaign and a level 14-18 D&D Greyhawk campaign. Before the greyhawk campaign we were doing a Shadowrun 3.0 game, and before the eberron campaign we were doing a runequest campaign, and before that, a hero system champions game.

My wife and I have been hosting a monthly play day for almost seven years. There must be a way for you to squeeze an evening out of your jam-packed life :p