Coronavirus Vs Tabletop Gaming

Frodo – “I wish it need not to have happened in my time”
Gandalf – “So do I, and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we can decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”

These are indeed strenuous days for those pursuant to the tabletop gaming hobby. But rather than lament, this piece rather is designed to inform and hopefully boost morale.

First things first. The Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a flu like illness with symptoms such as a cough, fever, and in more severe cases, difficulty breathing. It’s primarily spread through contact with an infected person when they cough or sneeze, or when an infected person touches a surface or object that has the virus on it and then you come along and touch it and play with your eyes, nose, or mouth.

Okay so what does that all mean for those of us who enjoy heading down to our local to play games?

Well for starters most stores have closed their play space in response to Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s recent update to the health advice – “But what we are now moving to is an arrangement for gatherings of less than 100, is that there would be 4 square metres provided per person in an enclosed space, in a room. So that’s 2 metres by 2 metres.”. You can read more about that here.

If you’re into competitive gaming don’t sweat it too much though as you wont be missing out. Just about every major game has also shutdown their organized play and rescheduled events. You can find the announcements for some here –

Magic: The Gathering
Fantasy Flight Games

It’s important to note here that most stores are only closing their play space. The retail portion of nearly every store is still very much open. Now more than ever theses stores need your support.

If you are sick and/or self-isolating, many stores have online shopping available. Time to stock up on a few miniatures to paint, RPG books to read, or even crack some boosters and build decks on your lounge room floor.

If you’re fit and healthy (but still taking precautions) you can (and should) head down to your local friendly gaming store and show your support. Perhaps pickup that board game you’ve been eyeing off for a while.

Stuck home? Check out the Vault Games online store.

Okay, but what’s the point you ask? What kind of tabletop gaming can actually take place over the coming weeks? I’m glad you asked!

Firstly if you and your friends are healthy and not self isolating there is nothing stopping you from playing at a private residence. Just be smart about it, wash your hands, try not to sit too close to each other, and if possible don’t handle the same game pieces.

If you’re stuck at home it’s still not the end of the world. Your biggest asset here is likely going to be ‘Tabletop Simulator‘ which allows you to play, well, just about anything in a simulated tabletop environment. You can play solo or with friends, heck you can even play in VR.

HeroQuest for Tabletop Simulator.

For those who enjoy a good RPG session, then all you really need is Discord, Skype, or some other chat program. Wrap up on the couch in a blanket with some dice with a laptop or tablet and you’re good to go.

Despite the present hardships don’t give up your hobby, this is a speed bump and not a dead end. Think laterally and work around the problem. Continue to support your local store, this is going to be a rough time for them and they’re going to need your help. Continue to play games with your friends, in whatever fashion you can do so safely.

If you’ve got some suggestions or information pursuant to the Coronavirus topic please let us know in the comments.

Gandalf – “It is not despair, for despair is only for those who see the end beyond all doubt. We do not.”

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