Diverse, casualish board gaming in Austin or New York
March 21, 2017 11:16 AM   Subscribe

I'm a college student, woman, and ethnic minority who would love to get into playing board games. I tried my university's tabletop group, but felt sort of out of place as the only newbie (as far as I could tell) and only woman. Are there any meet ups in Austin (where I am currently) or New York (where I'll be in the summer) that are diverse/inclusive and welcoming to people new to the hobby? Some more specifics inside.

I'm particularly interested in playing "social/psychological" games: my favorite game at the moment is Coup; I also really like Werewolves/Resistance and their many derivatives. I'm very open to learning about and playing other types of games, although I would prefer to avoid games that require a lot of investment (both money wise or time wise), and games with physical aspects (like dexterity games).

I've seen some board games bars recommended, but I don't drink.

I'm located near UT in Austin and will be in lower Manhattan in the summer. Willing to try places out of the way in either case as long as I can get there through public transport.

My ideal board game group would be some IRL meetup equivalent of the folks and community at Shut Up and Sit Down, who honestly were the reason I became interested in trying out board games in the first place.

posted by perplexion to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (7 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I'm not located or familiar with either location, so speaking more broadly, comic and game shops may have suitable events. And if they only host collectible card games and wargames, if they carry a more diverse set of games, you could ask if they've thought of having a board game night. You could also check out coffee shops that have board games on hand, and ask a similar question.

Otherwise, you could start your own events and put up fliers in more diverse/ inclusive venues and shops to start such a group, but then it's all on you to manage.

If you want to join another online forum, Board Game Geek's forum has a Women and Gaming sub-forum, which might have more resources and ideas.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:34 PM on March 21, 2017 [1 favorite]

Best answer: You should check out Outlaw Moon in Austin. They have a Ladie's Game Night, host a similar LGBTQ and woman-focused comic book group, and are all around cool people. Even when they have competitive games like Magic: The Gathering it's usually framed as being accepting and open toward beginners. They also have open game nights if you want to meet people to start a new group with.
posted by tofu_crouton at 12:51 PM on March 21, 2017 [1 favorite]

I'm of no help on your actual question.

But I also love hidden role games. Some more suggestions:

Burke's gambit: doubly hidden role! looking for an alien parasite on a spaceship. Some people want to keep it alive, others want to kill it... and you (generally) don't know if you have it.

Bang! (dice version): western themed, Sheriff vs Outlaws, dice add some randomness

Samurai Sword: Bang! 2.0. Similar mechanics, more strategic. No one dies, so there's no sitting around waiting for the game to end so you can get back in.

Mafia de Cuba: quick. One round. Good props.

Cash n' guns: just silly fun. As long as you think shooting people over stolen goods is fun.
posted by booooooze at 1:26 PM on March 21, 2017 [1 favorite]

Feel free to send me a Memail when you're in NYC! I have people over for games fairly regularly, usually a mix of simpler and more complex ones (Hanabi or Sishi Go; Dominion; Agricola). I can give you more info when I'm not on my phone if you're interested. (I'm a lady and not too serious of a gamer; my boyfriend, source of most of the games, is somewhat more so, but also not too competitive and loves to teach people.)
posted by ferret branca at 2:37 PM on March 21, 2017 [1 favorite]

Also, I should say some of the people we have over are Mefites (quite a few, actually), and NYC Mefites have been known to have board game meetups generally--thanks, ocherdraco!--so keep an eye out!
posted by ferret branca at 2:42 PM on March 21, 2017 [2 favorites]

Best answer: I checked in with my NYC gamer geek network, which is quite diverse along multiple vectors. It was suggested that Brooklyn Game Lab's Tuesday night gaming event might suit you, while you're in NYC.
posted by ursus_comiter at 5:01 PM on March 21, 2017 [1 favorite]

I'm also in the NYC area and would love a not-predominately-male gaming group.
posted by naturalog at 7:02 PM on March 21, 2017 [1 favorite]

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