Gamers Teaching Gaming – Explain Your Self!
Someone suggested the other day that I write an article about how to teach gaming. I was thinking about doing this for a bit but I was spurred to action with the confidence of another saying I was a fairly good teacher! I decided after some deliberation to write a segment about teaching gamers how to teach gaming. Back in college I used to tutor chemistry and math, but have only been teaching games for a few years now. Even though it hasn’t been long, I like to think I have learned a lot about how people learn and how to teach games. Today this segment will focus on the pitch: how to tell someone about a game in a way that is interesting and the different types of pitches you can have ready for different individuals.
The 30 Second Quick Pitch
This is the game description you have prepared for the passerby looking over your shoulder about the game you’re playing, the person slowly wandering around the store looking intimidated or the person with five kids running around who needs to keep an eye on them before they start going crazy. The most important part of the 30 second pitch is telling someone what makes the game unique. Trying to convince them why they should stay and learn this game with you. It usually covers the theme, the turn over view, and the unique facets of the game.
The 5 Minute Rules Overview
This is a game description that you use when you have a person who actively asked you about the game you are playing, a person who is shopping around a store and asked you for your opinion, or an individual you are already engaged in a gaming conversation with. This explanation is a nice middle ground due to its time frame. You can divide it as such:
Introduction to the game and its theme: 1min
Overview of the components and rules: 2 min
Reason why you love or hate this game: 2 min
As jokey as that sounds it is a great way to get people excited or (scared) about the game they are looking to play. Usually I try not to focus on too much negative but one criticism is usually necessary because it give balance into the game’s overall value. We all know that nothing is perfect so giving the good and the bad is a healthy part of any game explanation. The length of this description of a game also allows for the theme, and rules to be fleshed out more which can lead to a better understanding for the people listening. Always try for the 5 minute rules overview if you can.
The Full Monty
The Full Monty is the real deal, this is where you explain the whole of a game to a person or a group before you play it. This explanation should typically only ever be a thing when you have sat everyone down for their first game. These types of explanations usually remove things like the teacher’s opinions about the game and the overview because you are getting straight down to business. You are probably gonna spend at least 10 minutes explaining the components and the rules to the players. How do you do that? That is something we will talk about later (which surprisingly is not a good way to discuss rules and I shouldn’t be doing that in a explanation of how to teach rules…never mind).
Well I did say this was a segment so I will have a few more of these Gamers Teaching Gaming articles and next time we will discuss what the flow of a gameplay overview should look like. Got any opinions on the types of explanations or version of your own you wanna add, put them in the comments! See ya next time!