There’s a general rule gamers don’t talk about much:
“Certain gamers aren’t allowed in our home.”
We hint. We avoid direct questions.
But when it comes down to it, we as gamers are far more comfortable gaming with certain people in public areas. We use gaming stores, conventions, and other public events to scout for potential players.
As I’ve found out, once your out of college it can be difficult to find reliable and trustworthy players.
Gaming space can also become a premium.
When I first came to college, I discovered the student union, which was open to the public. Every weekend the common area downstairs would attract gamers who weren’t college age, and I wondered:
“Why are all these old guys playing games in a student union?”
(Well, they were “old” to me at the time. And it didn’t help that one or two would go out of their way to oogle the college girls).
Meanwhile, I would game with the “official” student group upstairs in reserved conference rooms. They were quiet for the most part. And they’re a luxury I miss sometimes.
I met some really great friends at those tables.
But I’d rather discover a “bad gamer” in a public or semi-public area rather than in the privacy of my home. And I think most gamers would agree.
This filtering process can be complex and time consuming. I’ve read plans such as: “First, I’ll run a few open games at my FLGS, and from the players there I’ll select a chosen few to join my real campaign.”
In a way, that’s how I treated the college gaming club. And it worked.
And if you’re gaming on a weekly basis, it’ll only take a couple months to find these “chosen” players. After a few sessions, the “mooks” will be weeded out.
The downside is that this process takes time, and you might not have that luxury if you’re playing once a month.
You also might get some repercussions over hurt feelings. “Why did you let so-and-so play and not me?”
And that’s when the truth might have to come out.
Of course, the best solution is to game with people you’d enjoy in another social setting.
Sometime, however, you’ve to work at it.