December 8th, 2002

Sterling

"You All Meet In A Tavern ..."

People generally find fellow gamers in one of two ways: they already know them as friends, or they find them through gamer-targeted sources (the bulletin board in the local games store, the college RPG club, an online bulletin-board or mailing list, etc). In the case of the former, you already have a decent sense of who everyone is and how they're going to pan out as a gamer. Sometimes, you may have a better idea than usual - for instance, most of my regular crew also does improv comedy on a semi-professional level. They are phenomenal role-players. It's an unparalleled joy.

Thus, I am somewhat put off by the notion of the latter method - looking for strangers to game with. They could be anti-social psychotics; they could be immature and uncooperative. Of course, they could just as easily be friendly and as eager to find a fellow gamer as I am. My experience is relatively limited.

So, I'd like to ask the community for either:

  • horror stories; or
  • stories of joy

about gaming experiences you've had with strangers. Whether you found them at a convention tournament, or off an index card tacked to some corkboard, you didn't know the majority of them ahead of time. Did it turn out well? Did things go poorly? Please - I'm curious.