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Gaming on Tabletop Simulator

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02 Feb 2021 04:15 #318713 by southernman

Count Orlok wrote: I've tried to host Tabletop Simulator games assuming - wrongly, I find out - that people have nothing better to do with a global pandemic on. Almost no one has shown up except the guy who recently got divorced. At first, I at least got a perfunctory message of apology after we started, but even that's dried up.

Honestly, I'm pretty gutted. This last year started on a bad professional note for me even before the pandemic started, and it's been downhill ever since. I had really hoped to be able to move back to an urban area and seek out new opportunities, but that's all been dashed with the pandemic in the meantime. It feels like such a personal slight that people who spend dozens and dozens of hours playing video games a week can't be bothered to try showing up. I had hoped that the pandemic would mean people would be more willing to reconnect using technology, but that seems to have been a foolish notion.

How have you all managed? Has anyone actually succeeded in starting a regular game group on TTS?


The others in my small gaming group are all avid videogamers (I'm not) but none of them have shown the slightest interest in playing boardgames online with TTS or other. I played a game of Puerto Rico on BoardgameArena way back last April with my euro-ey group and that was OK, and they played some more games for a while.
But I think, as Hotseat mentioned, that a lot of gamers play boardgames for the social interaction and we just aren't that interested in what can be done with technology as you sit in a room with a screen by yourself.
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02 Feb 2021 09:47 #318722 by Count Orlok
I understand that TTS is not ideal but what choice do we have? I'm more than willing to settle for a lesser social interaction than to cut social interactions out my life altogether.

In terms of TTS itself, I found it really awkward at first, but after a little bit of experience it's really not bad at all. My first experience was the cluttered nightmare of Gloomhaven but fortunately I've managed to get a few games of Pax Pamir in. Still can't seem to break three players, unfortunately. My wife also doesn't have TTS, so she's been joining via screenshare which has worked surprisingly well.

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03 Feb 2021 04:55 - 03 Feb 2021 04:56 #318778 by southernman

Count Orlok wrote: I understand that TTS is not ideal but what choice do we have?


Well obviously there are others :), from the results of gaming groups not bothering to use it - maybe boardgamers are trying different things, or just an alternate hobby, in their leisure time rather than a degraded experience.
Last edit: 03 Feb 2021 04:56 by southernman.

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03 Feb 2021 17:02 #318801 by Greg Aleknevicus
I've been playing on BoardGameArena for a few months and love it. Unlike some other sites, it doesn't just simulate a tabletop, but enforces rules, keeps score, etc. This makes game-play significantly faster than in real-life.

Mostly I've been playing with strangers and the BGA interface makes this painless and fast -- finding a table of opponents normally takes 2-3 minutes.

When I play with friends, we use Zoom for table-talk, banter, etc. It's not a perfect substitute for gathering around the table, but since we can't do that nowadays, it suffices.
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04 Feb 2021 08:48 #318807 by the_jake_1973

Greg Aleknevicus wrote: I've been playing on BoardGameArena for a few months and love it. Unlike some other sites, it doesn't just simulate a tabletop, but enforces rules, keeps score, etc. This makes game-play significantly faster than in real-life.

Mostly I've been playing with strangers and the BGA interface makes this painless and fast -- finding a table of opponents normally takes 2-3 minutes.

When I play with friends, we use Zoom for table-talk, banter, etc. It's not a perfect substitute for gathering around the table, but since we can't do that nowadays, it suffices.


I really like the BGA interface as well. The ability to play turn-based OR real time is wonderful. Yucata.de is another site with decent boardgame (euro mainly) implementations.

I use TTS for solo gaming at the moment.

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04 Feb 2021 15:01 #318817 by Shellhead

Count Orlok wrote: I understand that TTS is not ideal but what choice do we have?


Solitaire games or hazmat suits. For now, I'm sticking to solitaire games.

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10 Feb 2021 22:47 - 10 Feb 2021 22:48 #319096 by Gary Sax
I'm up for anything on one of these weeknights, esp on or after 8pm mountain. Root, Oath, we talked about Gaia Project, whatever.

If anyone wants to get a crazy game of Sidereal Confluence togther I'm willing to try it no matter how crazy it might be. I'd say we need 4 players.
Last edit: 10 Feb 2021 22:48 by Gary Sax.

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11 Feb 2021 12:51 #319111 by Count Orlok
I'm interested, but 8 PM MT is pretty brutal for the east coast on a week night.

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11 Feb 2021 12:53 #319113 by Gary Sax
Yeah, I bet. Weekend plans probably work a lot better.

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24 Feb 2021 01:44 #319572 by QPCloudy
Hi guys! I’ve been out of the fort loop for years but I just built my first gaming rig! I’m so excited. I’ve wanted to do it for years. Anyhow, I really want to get into tabletop simulator but I of course don’t have anyone to play with. 8pm mtn time is fine for me. I’m east coast but I don’t usually get on until 9 or 10pm my time. I’m QPCloudy on steam also. Some folks here I am already friends with. Let’s plan something. I’d also love getting in on a regular DnD game.
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02 Jun 2021 17:42 - 02 Jun 2021 17:42 #323650 by Gary Sax
Sornars and I are talking about playing something tomorrow around noon (AZ time) and evening UK time. Pop into the Discord if you are interested to chat about what. If you need a discord invite to my discord, PM me, I'm not sure if the links all over this thread are dead yet.
Last edit: 02 Jun 2021 17:42 by Gary Sax.

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11 Jan 2022 12:06 - 11 Jan 2022 12:09 #329654 by Gary Sax
We've been talking about it over the weekend on discord, so it's worth mentioning on TWBG that the Tabletop Simulator people spent the weekend milkshaking ducking themselves and then backpedaling very weakly if at all before then harder and harder starting to think about changing as the issue got publicized.

You can look up the thread on twitter and such pretty easily, but basically they banned someone who had some suspicions about the devs based on their global chat policies for saying they were trans in global chat. To me that sucks, but the really bad part happens when the person discussed the issue in TTS's discord and was told that the justification is that they weren't allowed to talk about sex and sexuality and that TTS was a family space... which is a pretty shitty response to someone talking about/stating their gender identity. The TTS moderator then responded by saying we don't let you talk about your gender identity because you might get trolled and harassed by bad elements. Which, again, this is classic victim blaming stuff when you don't really moderate a space. They finally started releasing statements on their official twitter, first a somewhat weird one about how it was someone trolling to get banned and then one about how they're actually an inclusive group and they would look into their policies, before finally disabling their global chat and putting a somewhat more substantive statement/apology out.

I'm not sure where I stand right now. I would have been fine side eyeing them and continuing on if they had said the initial thing was a mistake with moderation and they're changing policies and eliminating global chat, if you're automoderating (bad idea) that can happen. But that is definitely not what has happened and they have only grudgingly backpedaled more and more as some of their big communities started pushing back and trying to figure out other platforms. Moreover, the mere *existence* of the absolutely filthy and gross global chat with basically only word moderation for the entire platform's existence isn't a great sign, and the active moderation response to this really fucking sucked and suggested they (are at least the moderator? It's a 6-10 person company) were not coming from a good place.

The question then becomes if they do make more substantive changes (killing global chat is a good start, it's hosted on a fucking *IRC CHANNEL*) should one continue to use the platform. That comes down to if you think a company that has been forced to handle thier shit is worth using if it took someone to force them. A lot of big communities are really coming to grips with this---there are a number of devs and gaming communities that depend on Tabletop Simulator. I guess I use enough products from ethically compromised companies that were forced into somewhat better behavior I'd probably keep using it if they clean up their house and keep global chat gone. But we'll see. I think a lot of people are skeptical based on the actual moderator's comments---what started for me as a rolleyes about the automoderating an absolutely toxic space really accelerated when I read the mod response.

So I guess if you're thinking about buying TTS right now I'd definitely wait and see what their response is, at the very least.
Last edit: 11 Jan 2022 12:09 by Gary Sax.

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11 Jan 2022 12:21 #329656 by Jackwraith
"Keep POLITICS out of GAMING! You mentioned you're GAY! That's a POLITICAL CHOICE!"

Yeah. I have some real questions about that. It wouldn't surprise me at all to discover that they're coming from the techbro/"libertarian"/safe space for straight White men end of the gaming world. I don't use TTS that often, as my ability to tolerate electronic board games is low (Sag did just add me to the TWBG group on Arena, so I am still trying!), so my perspective probably matters less here. Also, I'm of the opinion that even if it did take a public backlash to get them to change their approach, they have (apparently) changed, so it's not like you'd be turning a blind eye to unrepentant Nazis or something like that.
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11 Jan 2022 13:22 #329658 by hotseatgames
It sucks for sure. I use TTS for prototype purposes and playtests with publishers. Not doing that would require learning an entirely new system, something I'm reluctant to do.

There's also the fact that I already gave them my money. Deleting TTS at this point only hurts ME, not THEM.

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11 Jan 2022 17:25 #329676 by thegiantbrain
I'll be reaching out to Berserk Games for comment for the next episode of Brainwaves in a couple of weeks time.
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