Are TTRPGs Even a "Good" Hobby?

payn

I don't believe in the no-win scenario
It certainly embiggens the pool greatly, and with Discord and other ways to curate your gaming social circle, it's fantastic.

That said, I don't know if it's just me, but any session past 2.5-3 hours is painful. This really limits the amount of mechanically complex stuff I can jam into a session. 5E fights past low levels or with even slightly novice players go too long.

For online games, I also prefer 2.5-3 hours of gaming (plus maybe half an hour for socializing). But the nice thing about these shorter sessions is that they are easier to fit into an adult schedule. At least in my groups (all online), most people play at least once every two weeks (and many play weekly), whereas the schedule for gaming face-to-face was once a month or less for me before I switched.
I had a steady every other Friday night game for 10 years until Covid killed it. I find my combats to actually be much faster with VTT assistance. Though, I do feel more drained of energy as player and GM from online sessions. If the session is a weeknight, im not gonna last past 3.5 hours. Though, my Friday night game sometimes goes 4-5 hours, especially if we missed a previous game.
 

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It certainly embiggens the pool greatly, and with Discord and other ways to curate your gaming social circle, it's fantastic.

That said, I don't know if it's just me, but any session past 2.5-3 hours is painful. This really limits the amount of mechanically complex stuff I can jam into a session. 5E fights past low levels or with even slightly novice players go too long.
I never do less than 4 hours, but I don't use 5e. Among its many, many faults, 5e IMO/IME stifles non-combat activity through spells and special abilities, while turning combat into drudgery.

I use Zweihander, Aces & Eights, and Hackmaster to keep player input at a higher level, and combat more eventful..
 

MNblockhead

A Title Much Cooler Than Anything on the Old Site
For online games, I also prefer 2.5-3 hours of gaming (plus maybe half an hour for socializing). But the nice thing about these shorter sessions is that they are easier to fit into an adult schedule. At least in my groups (all online), most people play at least once every two weeks (and many play weekly), whereas the schedule for gaming face-to-face was once a month or less for me before I switched.
I get it, but 2 hours is just not satisfying for me. I run 8-hour sessions. Only once per month, but I would rather have one long session than four short sessions. Easier to find time we can all make it this way as well. We just can't keep to a schedule. At the end of each session, we just choose a Saturday we can all make it the next month. Rarely miss a month, but it happens occasionally, but we also have the occasional month where we play two Saturdays in a month.

Out of the 8 hours, we probably are only getting in 6 hours of actual focused play, but the banter is part of it. I find it comfortable to have long sessions online, but I miss when we were able to play in person and would do potlucks, go on food runs together, etc. Also, throwing dice at other players when they deserve it just isn't as satisfying online.

For one shots that I buy into as a player on Start Playing, I usually choose 4-5 hour games.
 

Thomas Shey

Legend
I get it, but 2 hours is just not satisfying for me. I run 8-hour sessions. Only once per month, but I would rather have one long session than four short sessions.

Yeah, I just can't imagine getting the value out of sessions shorter than about six hours. I know that's going to intrinsically limit my ability to find online players one of these days (as do other factors of timing and expected attendance) but it is what it is.
 

payn

I don't believe in the no-win scenario
I get it, but 2 hours is just not satisfying for me. I run 8-hour sessions. Only once per month, but I would rather have one long session than four short sessions. Easier to find time we can all make it this way as well. We just can't keep to a schedule. At the end of each session, we just choose a Saturday we can all make it the next month. Rarely miss a month, but it happens occasionally, but we also have the occasional month where we play two Saturdays in a month.

Out of the 8 hours, we probably are only getting in 6 hours of actual focused play, but the banter is part of it. I find it comfortable to have long sessions online, but I miss when we were able to play in person and would do potlucks, go on food runs together, etc. Also, throwing dice at other players when they deserve it just isn't as satisfying online.

For one shots that I buy into as a player on Start Playing, I usually choose 4-5 hour games.
I have rarely ever done 8 hour sessions, even when I was a teen! I did get a few 6 hour sessions in on occasion, but even my regular F2F games were always in the 3-4 hour range.
 

I run 8-hour sessions. Only once per month, but I would rather have one long session than four short sessions.
Even when I still played at the table, I rarely played more than 4-5h (we did play 6-8h in one group and play would often became rather unfocused in the second half, but then I'm also an introvert and social interaction, no matter how much I enjoy it, drains my battery rather quickly past a certain point).
But if it works for you and your group, then it's perfectly fine. I can even see the appeal, it's just not for me.
 

GrimCo

Adventurer
I have rarely ever done 8 hour sessions, even when I was a teen! I did get a few 6 hour sessions in on occasion, but even my regular F2F games were always in the 3-4 hour range.
Same. Way back when in HS, our Saturday game was usually from 10-16/17. Not too early, cause hangover from Friday night was still going on, not to late, cause Saturday night was also for going out. Most sessions in university were 4-5 hours long.

Only 8h sessions these days are 2-3 times a year we go on boys weekend. Even then, it's usually divided into smaller 3-4 blocks with brakes for food, outdoor activities, going to beach etc.
 


Bagpuss

Legend
Do your brains work like this? If so, how can you continue to enjoy this hobby?

No my brain doesn't work like that. I suspect it is your brain that is the issue rather than the hobby if these many issues are bothering you every week. I suspect no matter what hobby you engage in you will create anxiety if you keep thinking about every single little issue like this.
 

TheSword

Legend
No my brain doesn't work like that. I suspect it is your brain that is the issue rather than the hobby if these many issues are bothering you every week. I suspect no matter what hobby you engage in you will create anxiety if you keep thinking about every single little issue like this.
I think we probably have to recognize that everyone is affected by things in different ways. Particularly when it comes to what causes or doesn’t cause us stress.

I’ve been doing a lot of resilience and team building work with my management team. There are some insights in there as to what kind of DMs we would be and what kind of things would get us down about DMing.


The types are below and I’m sure we can recognize the kind of DM that would try to be strong at all costs, or the DM that would want things to be perfect to a greater extent than necessary. Or the Dm that would avoid conflict. There is some advice there for how to deal with it too.

Without wanted to project onto anyone else, my gut feeling is that @Retreater has a Be Perfect driver. It will be no surprise to those that know me that I have a Hurry Up driver.

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