The Ann Arbor Area RPG & D&D Group Message Board › Thoughts on May's meetup
I wasn't at April's meetup, but I had a bit of trouble with the noise level in March, and it became a problem for my table this month. The din throughout much of the afternoon and evening was such that I could not communicate with my players unless I ran around the table to talk to people individually or literally shouted from my seat. Since many of the players also have quiet voices, it was very difficult to hear one another and run on a smooth, cohesive game where the players were aware of what the others were doing.
I cannot propose a definite solution to this, but I have a few ideas...
1) Have an "on-call" GM that can start up an additional game when necessary (doesn't have to be D&D) to keep each table to 4-6 players. With people spread out into smaller groups, each one should be able to communicate easily within itself and lower the overall noise level.
2) We found it enjoyable to go out on the deck for short periods to get away from the noise and get some fresh air during non-combat portions of the game. All we needed was a page or two of notes for me, the front page of each character sheet with skill modifiers, and a dew d20s. Perhaps other GMs would consider doing this on nice days?
3) If no one else is willing and able to GM regularly, I know that many of us own board and card games that we could bring and play if the D&D tables are full. This also might help to attract a wider variety of gamers to the group.
4) I am no expert on acoustics, but perhaps we could obtain some screens (like these) to set up between tables and keep the noise from carrying as much.
Was this a problem for other groups, or did mine just happen to be in the loudest spot or have the quietest players? Is anyone willing to be an on-call GM? Would you be less likely to attend of there was a possibility you could end up playing board games instead of D&D? Does anyone else have other ideas on how to control the noise level in the clubhouse? Can anyone get an unbeatable deal on sound dampening material?
Anyone else's comments, thoughts, and ideas on the subject would be most welcome.