Gaming Group Struggles

R_J_K75

Explorer
Over the years Ive occasionally had the same problem with players not showing up or just dropping out of games. The worst case resolution may be to just take a break from playing from awhile. Youd be surprised how the issue usually resolves itself. Chances are those casual players wont return to the game, your loyal players will and youll probably wind up with a new player or two. Start up a new game and hopefully that will solve your problem. I've done this in the past and it worked for me a few times.
 
Part of the "problem" is that D&D is the gateway to the hobby, and DMing is it's own special challenge, and has varied some with edition, too, so you have different experienced folks (experienced with D&D, or more broadly) giving very different opinions on the more general role of GM.
 

Larnievc

Explorer
My longest running gaming group has run into some difficulties as of late. We were facing sporadic attendance due to real life issues (work and family commitments, which I can't complain about.) We were already down to biweekly sessions, so it was hard to keep everyone on track. Since we couldn't bank on having the same players there week after week, the style of game necessarily changed. We decided as a group we couldn't run a class-based system (aka D&D) since not all the roles would be filled. I converted the campaign and their characters to a different system.

So now several of the existing players are leaving to find "D&D" groups. Obviously, I let the players find a group that is fun for them. I'm just at a loss of what to do. I can't run a regular D&D game for the 3 players willing to stay behind. And I can't keep the players who are leaving unless we play D&D. But we can't play D&D because half the people miss regularly.

What's a guy to do?
As I was reading this I was sat with my son watching Paw Patrol.

There’s these six dogs who each episode a selection of them (never all six it seems) go and do some good and get it done in time for the end of the episode.

Have your guys as part of a team or strike force who work for an agency that get tasked with ‘monster of the week’ style sessions.

That way the team changes every ‘episode’ but the ones not there get downtime (make up a fancy system to give that meaning so they are advancing their character even when absent).

When one or two are there play a character heavy session (like when Vic From the Shield has a family episode).

When they are all there have a lore drop episode (like the mythos episodes from X-Files). That keep everyone up with the narrative.

With the healing in 5e you’ll rarely need a cleric for dedicated healing.

Never be afraid to steal shamelessly from procedural formats 👍
 

aramis erak

Explorer
Might need to grab the most reliable one or two players and build a new group.

2 players and DM is a decent core to rebuild around.
For a good number of people, including myself, at least 3 players are essential, and the sweet spot is 4 or 5...
I've run groups of up to 13 players, but find 1p and 2p totally and completely unfun to run for. As in, unless I have a third, it's boardgame time, so I can at least have a little fun.
 

Zardnaar

Hero
For a good number of people, including myself, at least 3 players are essential, and the sweet spot is 4 or 5...
I've run groups of up to 13 players, but find 1p and 2p totally and completely unfun to run for. As in, unless I have a third, it's boardgame time, so I can at least have a little fun.
You can add two people to two and get 4.

I added 3 To a core group if 3.
 

S'mon

Legend
3 players is a good number for many sorts of games; it leaves space to add an NPC which can be a problem with large groups.

That said, I nominally have 9 players in my Red Hand of Doom campaign, but I doubt they'll ever all turn up at once - had 5 at the game yesterday and that was pretty much a perfect number.
 

Zardnaar

Hero
3 players is a good number for many sorts of games; it leaves space to add an NPC which can be a problem with large groups.

That said, I nominally have 9 players in my Red Hand of Doom campaign, but I doubt they'll ever all turn up at once - had 5 at the game yesterday and that was pretty much a perfect number.
5 is perfect I capped my game at that. I'll go to 6 with the right players it older edition.
 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
For a good number of people, including myself, at least 3 players are essential, and the sweet spot is 4 or 5...
I've run groups of up to 13 players, but find 1p and 2p totally and completely unfun to run for.
2-player games can be great, praticularly if one or both tend to be attention hogs in a larger group.

1-player games can, depending on the player, quickly become a real drag. Or not.
 

aramis erak

Explorer
2-player games can be great, praticularly if one or both tend to be attention hogs in a larger group.

1-player games can, depending on the player, quickly become a real drag. Or not.
I've always found boardgames by far more fun than 1p or 2p TTRPG games. Orders of magnitude more fun.
 

Campbell

Relaxed Intensity
3 player games are my absolute favorite. You have more than enough time to focus in on the individual characters without things feeling stretched for any given player, but enough players that they can meaningfully work together. 4 players is also good because you can do a lot of paired content.
 

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