Free family game night, virtual or otherwise

How to run a free family game nights virtual or otherwise. This will work over the internet, in the same room or even if one person wants or needs to be in a different part of the house or a combination of all

Ingredients.
Each player needs a device phone, laptops or PC.
A shared screen everyone can see, gather round a big TV or stream over a free service like Discord
(or both have some people at home and some online. )
Total cost Zero (hopefully)

1) Download / Open Steam (Free) and get Drawful 2 for free.  
(Other Jackbox games are available and they work across a huge range of platforms including Firestick and Switch)

2) Start Drawful, you will see a four digit room code. 

3) Share your screen, either everyone looks at the TV or you can use a free chat service like discord where you go live or Skype, zoom.

4) Everyone navigates to jackbox.tv on a browser on their device and enters the four digit code.

5) Set ground rules, Is this family friend or are drawings of willies allowed and if any topics are too sensitive. 

No Ducks

6) Play and have fun.

Now you have a system set up investigate other Jackbox games or games you can run by sharing your screen or using a web camera. 

Skibbl.io is also free, it’s a real time hangman style game, you don’t need a shared screen so it easier to play, you can still also combine it with a voice chat for added social https://skribbl.io/

A more detailed guide is here http://herefordshireboardgamers.co.uk/online-gaming/

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Free stuff ish

During these interesting times, companies are stepping up and giving stuff away for free. I will update this post as I find more!

I will list what i can here.
Jackbox.TV Drawfull 2 Free https://jackboxgames.com/were-giving-away-drawful-2-for-free-for-three-weeks/

Half price apps (with half to charity) Galaxy Trucker and Roll through the ages. (both amazing games)
https://czechgames.com/en/home/news-20-03-20-global-sales-for-global-problem/

Free print and play games (some are always free, other lines have been made free including https://greygnome.com/
https://www.pnparcade.com/collections/free-games

Chamelion app by Big potato. Team social deducation game
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.bananaandco.board.game.free.chameleon
https://apps.apple.com/gb/app/the-chameleon-board-game/id1359224305

Steam board game, free this weekend, Between two castles
https://store.steampowered.com/app/1158500/Between_Two_Castles__Digital_Edition/?fbclid=IwAR0d0goKEITSQUiy8Q3yr_t0kQPwusnzBhqanNr_80t3Bhkwc-Ccja_LcnU

Free roll and write game from Jamey Stegmaier
https://app.box.com/s/8cvpes663vm0r6wen30e6rexcyjak5mn

Asomodee digital apps some free some heavily reduced
https://appsliced.co/apps/dev/asmodee-digital-sas?fbclid=IwAR1OlzV5GqbBw4GrNMgccBCG1WywGY1Ulyg7jgVOmrbGkzQ9dLRmpHp0feU

Frostgrave rules for free https://therenaissancetroll.blogspot.com/2020/03/frostgrave-is-free.html?fbclid=IwAR1OlzV5GqbBw4GrNMgccBCG1WywGY1Ulyg7jgVOmrbGkzQ9dLRmpHp0feU

Greenmangames, Jackbox games on offer
https://www.greenmangaming.com/search/jackbox

Free games every so often (not covid related)
https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/free-games?fbclid=IwAR1rQWAOv3HFOH6hNz5POb98MoCT68E988oOWTpSFA6omSwSRGV_tEYrR5c

Quiz game free – Mr lister quiz shootout by Big Potato Games
https://bigpotato.com/blog/mr-lister-free-download/?fbclid=IwAR36kx2AolFcnUX3dSg8LXR6c5KQql8AKGpFPee6aTzwfAhZtA0_Jc6fe9Y


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Gift buying guides and thank yous!

Christmas gift buying guides. We have lots of guides on our website. Here is a list of next steps of classic games. http://herefordshireboardgamers.co.uk/what/next-steps-from-classic-games/

This is a list of begineers games and some tips for buying games
http://herefordshireboardgamers.co.uk/best-games-for-beginners/

Also consider borrowing some games from us for over the christmas period. These lists /guides probably need updating so we welcome any input or suggestions.

Just one is a great social game, Telestrations / Scrawl and timelines works amazingly welll with large groups and non gamers. A few more gift game guides https://boardgamegeek.com/w…/page/Board_Game_Gift_Guide_2019

This is a great price comparison site for buying games https://boardgameprices.co.uk/ Also do consider buying from our sponsors, those who have donated games for our charity events. http://herefordshireboardgamers.co.uk/who/our-friends/

Big Potato Coiledspring Games Asmodee UK Calliope Games Chaos Cards Czech Games Edition Mantic Games Meeples’ Corner Stuff By Bez The Board Game Hut Duke’s Gaming Pegasus Hobbies & Games Thanks All.  (I will add links to thier websites on an edit! Running out of time as ever!)

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Guides and articles! Also website updates

Just a reminder have a range of good ish guides and articles on here. Check them out, share them give us feedback.

How to choose a new game!
http://herefordshireboardgamers.co.uk/what/choosing-a-new-game/

Next step from classic games!
http://herefordshireboardgamers.co.uk/what/next-steps-from-classic-games/

How to teach games!
http://herefordshireboardgamers.co.uk/what/howtoteachgames/

Top Games for pubs and cafes!
http://herefordshireboardgamers.co.uk/what/top-games-for-pubs-and-cafes/

How to run a great games night!
http://herefordshireboardgamers.co.uk/what/how-to-run-a-great-games-night/

Our next guide will be a list of recommended games based on player count and category!

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We are also updating the website and creating a new area for our charity work as it is an important part of the club, who we are and what we do. I am also creating galleries and copying across some legacy content from Facebook. So there will be some blank pages as I work on them.


Any feedback on the website is welcome!

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How to run a great games night and make it inclusive and supportive of well being and neurodiversity

There is no perfect answer to this but the following tips, should create a welcome friendly environment. Everyone likes to know the lie of the land, the basic rules and what to expect but more so if you have anxiety, autistic tendencies or a number of other issues.
So double check and make sure everything is clear even down to signage and drinks options. Set and manage expectations

Step one: Prepare: Advertise and set expectations

1) Advertise, find your players but clearly set expectations of the kind of games being played, what games are provided, are their teachers?
2) Is there a cost to the event
2). Where, when, what food and drink is available what is the cost?
3) Take requests for games and ask if people are bringing games to teach.
4) Send out rules videos or lists of the games being played so people can research
5) Include photos of the venue and gaming space. including accessibility information, stairs, lifts disabled toilets
6) Provide a map to the venue including parking information
7) Provide a second private channel for information and feedback. (Messenger) to answer questions before the event
8) Provide photos of the organizers
9) Provide photos of previous events to help set expectations.

Step two: The night: Ensure a friendly welcome atmosphere

1) Ensure the venue is well signed so you are easy to find. I include A4 laminated signed the whole way
2) Friendly greeter to welcome all guests to assign them to an appropriate game and game teacher.
3) An appropriate game is dependent on the gamer but be aware of:
a. overly competitive games,
b. overall complex games for new games.
c. games which are too extrovert or social and / or involve lying and bluffing.
d. Game which rules change too much, having known and controlled rules can be more comfortable.
4) The game teacher should be patient but also enthusiastic and welcoming
5) Ensure the venue has appropriate lighting,
6) Enough space between the gaming tables.
7) Control the noise including reducing or eliminating background music (Provide space between games helps with this, we also separate the louder social games and the more thoughtful euro games).
8) Be patient and tolerant, gamers with additional needs may be harder to please, may not react to social cues.
9) Ensure staff are identifiable. (Even having a different colour lanyard or badge would do)
10) Name stickers or name tags for all guests removes the pressure of asking or remembering names.
11) Provide a quiet or quieter space for people to unwind or decompress.
12) Include a flag or player match making system to make finding gamers easier if you don’t have an active host arranging this.

Step three: The growth

1) Grow and nurture the culture to be friendly, inclusive and welcoming.
2) Ask for feedback
3) Allow volunteers to step up and be involved. (Ownership of tasks and feeling of belonging)
4) Do not take rejection personally, even with perfect planning you cannot please everyone. Doubly so if people have additional issues.

This is not a once size fits all guide everyone is different and i am a gamer with an interest in inclusivity and making sure everyone has a good time not a medical professional. Hopefully these tips will help, they are mostly obvious.

It is also worth considering, players with vision issues including colour blindness, picking game carefully, marking up components, swapping components out or just helping to read public or open text.

Happy gaming!

This is work in progress so I’d love any feedback or comments.

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Basically Wooden Review: Scythe and Village insert.

This isn’t a full review, just a few thoughts and lots of picture of building some inserts. Basically Wooden make fine accessories for board games and you can buy them pre build or DIY

The build process was quite easy, only one part was fiddly and took a few attempts, it took a whole ball of elastic bands and best part of a bottle of PVA glue.

Once built they make organising, sorting and getting the game to the table much quicker. The Scythe insert is brilliant. The village insert isn’t quite as polished but still makes getting the game on the table a breeze, but this an early Basically Wooden insert and it shows how much the company and product has matured. They are active and listen to the community, we are lucky to have them in the county

A quick gallery of the build process for the Inserts / game tidies. You can buy them complete or DIY. This is for Scythe…

Posted by Ad Best on Tuesday, April 4, 2017

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