I posted this in our Slack channel, so I thought’d be worth also posting here.
I posted this in our Slack channel, so I thought’d be worth also posting here. It’s some thoughts about sign up and play with The Gauntlet.
Responsibilities & Best Practices for Sign Up, Attendance, and Cancellations
We’ve had a bunch of new players join us in the last several months and we’re set to have visitors with us for Gauntlet Con. And we’ve had a long summer and now we’re heading into a holiday season. We’ve had a couple of issues with cancellations and both players and GMs have reached out to us to discuss that. So I want to talk about that process.
PLAYER RESPONSIBILITIES AND BEST PRACTICES
Signing up’s a commitment to play, a minor one, but still one to consider. If you take a seat, that means someone else doesn’t get that seat. Be fair to other Gauntlet Members in your attendance.
When you sign up for a game– waitlist or not– you should put it in your calendar. Yes, we don’t have that automated yet, but it’s an important minimal step you need to take. I don’t think that’s an unreasonable expectation.
There’s nothing in the system to prevent you from waitlisting to multiple sessions in the same slot. That’s not something we want to police. But if you do get into one of those events, please drop yourself from the others.
Life’s hard. Scheduling’s hard. That’s a given and we understand that work, school, family, self-care can force someone to cancel. We don’t ask or judge someone’s reasons for doing that. But the flip side is expecting you to make an effort to drop with the most notice for the GM. If you’re uncertain about making it, err on the side of dropping if people are waiting on the waitlist. Or talk to the GM about it. That’s probably the best solution.
If you drop the day of or even a few days before, contact your GM to tell them. Give them a heads up, especially if you’ve already played a session or if there’s a waitlist. This gives them the opportunity to go out and recruit people to fill in or plan around your absence.
You’re under no obligation to explain a drop, but if you swap to another session and don’t say anything, there’s every chance your GM or fellow player will spot that. Try not to burn bridges.
All our games are open table. If you didn’t enjoy a session, you don’t have to return for the other sessions. But do inform the GM of your absence and do drop yourself from the list.
Be understanding of other players who have to drop. Help the GM integrate players from the Waitlist to the session.
In short try to look ahead and try to handle attendance with respect for the GM and fellow players.
GM RESPONSIBILITIES AND BEST PRACTICES
Show up and be ready. If something happens and you can’t make it, see if you can get someone to fill in. If that’s not possible, reach out to all of your players and tell them. Do this as early as possible to give them time to find another game. If the game’s already had a session or two, consider checking if one of the players takes over.
Expect an open table. Don’t plan on your line up to be the same from session to session. Be ready to roll with that. If you have a minimum number and don’t have that many, prepare and offer a back-up entertainment.
If someone drops, be understanding about that. Don’t judge. Sometimes it will be at the last minute and that sucks. But the overall attendance rate is pretty great in the Gauntlet, so don’t let a few bad incidents sour you.
That being said, if you have a player who repeatedly drops at the last minute or without notice, give me a heads up. Let me check in with them to see how we can make the process better for them.
We’ll refine this and add it to our FAQ and our general policies document. I hope that helps. To get a better picture, in November I’m going offer GMs an informal, voluntary survey about attendance at sessions. (edited)