How to Get Playing: Finding a Group

Published 1/3/21

Congratulations! You have found the amazing world that is tabletop gaming, but now what do you do? This is a big question that has been asked of me and there are a lot of things to unpack. Not everyone is lucky enough to have a group of close friends who have been set up or long time players of tabletop rpg games. Here are Dm Wolfsfox and DM Bork’s tips and tricks.

Start with Friends

Try starting with your friends. It’s always easier to learn and be yourself around friends you already know. There may be people on your friends list that also have been secretly wanting to try playing as well. Ask friends who you think would enjoy it and you can always do a small "one shot" tester game to see if it is something that you all will want to try.

Online Options

There are lots of discords that you can reach out on with places to post "Looking for a Game" or "Looking for a DM" type responses. DM Mentors Guild has a channel for DM_Classifieds that allows posting of DM's looking for players and brief descriptions of their games. Pathfinder RPG discord also has lfg (looking for game) by categories of gm, player and by world. How to be a Great Game Master is also a great discord for resources and for looking-for-games.

Facebook is another good place to reach out. I'm from Minnesota and there is a group of 2.9K members called "Dungeons and Dragons Minnesota" where time to time you will get people looking for players or DM's to join a game.

I would encourage looking for groups using Discord, Facebook, reddit, etc. to find games only if you feel comfortable with it. Always remember safety tactics when reaching out to strangers on the internet.

Gaming Stores

Local game stores can be a great resource when trying to reach out and find a table. Some game stores will even have tables that players can come and play with local dm's. Adventures League may be a good start for players who are looking to see if they like Table Top gaming and can possibly open up your views as you play with different Adventures League GMs.

Gaming Platforms

Both D&D Beyond and Roll20 both have community forums on which you can use to make a post about what you are looking for in a group/DM or for you to communicate with others and become part of someone else's table. Again, always remember safety tactics when reaching out to strangers on the internet.

Last Thoughts

One big thing to keep in mind is you may not always find “the right fit” at your first few tables. You may find DMs that need more experience and you may find players who have a personality that clashes with yours. I ask that if you have a bad experience don’t quit the gaming until you have given a different table/dm/player group a chance. I will admit that it took a few tries before I found a table of reliable players that have a continuous invite to join my tables.

The main thing when looking is conduct some interviews to see what is going to be the best fit. Are you wanting a game that is strict on the rules? Are you looking for lots of puzzles and role play or do you want something that is combat focused? Make sure that you are comfortable and that you are going into a game that sounds fun and interesting to you.

Also, when searching on the online platforms you may see groups asking for money to play. It is DM Wolfsfox and DM Bork's recommendation to stay away from tables asking for money. I will be posting a future article on this but here is our thoughts in brief: Dungeons and Dragons, Pathfinder, Call of Cthulhu is a hobby that is to be shared and enjoyed by everyone. If you want to gift something to your GM or if you are in an in person group and helping chip in for snacks is different. To put an expected price tag on your game just for someone to DM doesn't feel right to us. Anyone can DM just like anyone can be a player. Table Top Gaming isn't a career and the main focus is to be having fun, not making money.