There's another post about high-demand games from 2015, but part of trying to figure out how to get more events for attendees to play in is figuring out how to recruit more GMs.
There were some threads about this in the old forums and I wanted to start that fresh in our new ones, with a few questions:
First, there's the general question: What can be done to encourage more people to run games?
The obvious answer is "offer them more incentive," but then we have to get down to what would actually motivate potential GMs and how much it would cost to implement. Getting a complimentary badge is already pretty easy, for example. Hotel rooms are an obvious huge motivator, but no matter what we do supply is going to be extremely limited, and lowering the bar risks setting up a situation where Gen Con would be losing money on events, which is not a tenable long-term solution. You could limit things to specific games, but that breaks up the even palying field we've tried to create and requires constant tweaking to keep up with new game trends.
Another issue often brought up is what I'll broadly call the Intimidation Factor: lots of gamers I know just don't think they can run an event. Some of that we can address with improved documentation and friendly how-to guides, but a lot of it is wrapped up in the confidence to be responsible for the fun of strangers, which takes more work to resolve.
In reaching out to gaming groups that run some of those high-demand games, a more specific question has also occurred to me: Would it be useful to have a broad "volunteer drive" for GMs?
Specifically, would it be useful to direct general attendee attention to gaming groups and companies that are specifically looking new members? Not every group event wants to grow, but what if the ones that did had threads in this forum or events at Gen Con where they could meet potential new GMs and help them get used to running events? Would that help fledgling GMs? Would there be enough broad interest to actually help those groups grow? Would it be better for each one to handle it's recruitment completely independently?
Share your thoughts and ideas. Just remember the usual rules of the GM forum: be nice to everyone and understand that not every idea is actually executable. It's likely there are some ramifications you might not have anticipated that complicate things - figuring stuff like that out is exactly why we're having this thread.
Let me know what you think.
- Derek Guder
Gen Con LLC