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Making Great Gaming Experiences

We just did an episode all about our top gaming experiences. As I was composing my top gaming moments it made me contemplate as to what makes a gaming moment exceptional. Looking at the list I compiled, my list of top gaming moments are based heavily on social experiences. In particular, my greatest gaming moments are based on the people I game with. I feel I have a great group of folks that I game with on a regular basis, and they are all very special to me. However, there are also some very amazing people that I meet with at conventions and the different events we run at each SaltCon. From the games we chose to host each convention that introduce us to a wide variety of new people, to our plays of Ultimate Werewolf where we see a lot of familiar faces, and of course the Game Show that we run each spring I get to meet a lot of people. Each of these experiences place me into contact with a wide scope of people, many of which I consider good friends, friends who I look forward to seeing at each of the four SaltCon events. These are people that I see and talk with only at BGGCon, and people I miss seeing when they do not attend one of their regular conventions.

We play many games with the ladies of the Herriman Utah Gaming Gals (HUGG) which has led us to having near family bonds, and also led us to forming our own private convention that we do twice a year for the past three years now. We have BBQs with friends that have been part of my inner circle for decades. And we have our weekly game nights which bring us together each week at my house and then the very next day, many of those same folks show up for Andy’s game night. Andy is often very generous with his game nights and prepares some sort of food which everyone else supplements with sides and treats. Not much makes good times better than the addition of great food.

Food and games pair together with good times for sure. We plan big meals around all of our HUGG-A-Meeple conventions, we plan dinners at each SaltCon. We schedule amazing food trips whenever we are in Texas for BGGCon. And of course, we all work together to have meals together when we attend SaltCon Bryce.

Food is great for sure, but the main reason gaming experiences are memorable is centered on the people. More so than even the content of the game, it is the people whom we game with that make those memories. That does not discount the importance of the need for a good game. Pairing the right game with the right group of games is key. For example, I would never plan on playing a four hour game of Star Wars Legion with my wife. That experience would crash and burn. However, if I can teach my wife a game of Patchwork, that is a game that will be evergreen for her. I honestly do not see her ever getting tired of playing that game. I am sure that it does not hurt that she wins 85% of those games.

Social games like Salem 1692 and Ultimate Werewolf are lost on both David and Andy. However, they are a blast with the ladies from HUGG, especially when players are fully invested and get very excited about their accusations, or have epic tales of how a lowly beet farmer could never be a werewolf and come prepared with a case file full of evidence of a clear alibi, complete with arrest report and photos. Time’s Up: Title Recall Has been a game that has always been a big success at BBQs, and we will even get the seniors to play some Crosswords or Fuji Flush. Pairing the right games with the right gaming group is very key for awesome gaming experiences and gaming memories.

What are some games that have spurred the greatest gaming memories for you?

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