RPG Evolution: When Gamers Retire

Adults gamers are always pining for more time to play. What happens when they retire?

Adults gamers are always pining for more time to play. What happens when they retire?

pensioners-3347948_1280.jpg

Picture courtesy of Pixabay.

Retirement Is Coming​

We've discussed previously how difficult it is for tabletop game designers to retire. But for the bulk of gamers who play as a hobby, retirement is a new stage of life that changes gaming opportunities.

The 76 million boomer generation in the U.S. have already retired of course, so they're finding out just what it means to be retired gamers. But the next generation of Gen X (my generation) is right behind them at 55 million in the U.S. alone, entering their 50s now with retirement looming large. The Millennials (62 million strong in the U.S.) are an even larger cohort. More important, people are living longer, with adults in their 60s having a roughly 50 percent chance of reaching 90. For many, they have around 20 years before their minds enter decline.

All this adds up to more retirees and more potential gamers.

What You Do in Retirement​

Being able to retire at all is a privilege. Not everyone can afford to do it, and the social safety nets in many countries have withered over time. But for those that can, retirement is a new phase in life, as lifestyles shift from working to what happens after the workforce.

Unfortunately, there are few guideposts as what retirees are supposed to do with their free time (besides keep working). Many turn to community efforts, giving back in some way. Still others pursue their hobbies -- the image of retirees golfing exists for good reason. So what do gamers do when they retire?

Game of course. Or they would, assuming they still want to.

Do You Want to Play a Game?​

Retirement often comes with adult children and grandchildren who put demands on the retirees time. And giving back to the community is a powerful pull, finding meaning in sharing experience with others. For those who can afford it, many seniors travel too.

But with the potential for a very large senior gamer cohort, the possibility of large groups of gamers finding each other over the Internet and playing more often is a real possibility. One of the players in my group is about to retire, and we're looking forward to her being able to play into the evening without worrying about going to work the next day.

We know that tabletop gaming is good for you: it establishes lifelong friendships through share experience, it helps players work through their emotions and frustrations, and--critically for retirees--it stimulates the mind. Many retirees try to keep busy to keep their minds sharp, and gaming requires full use of mental faculties.

Will we play RPGs after we retire with our newfound free time? If DndGrandma is any indication, most of us certainly will be.

Your Turn: Do you play with retirees? Do you plan to game when you are one?
 

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Michael Tresca

Michael Tresca


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pogre

Legend
Thanks. I'll take you up on that offer, for both gaming and football.
I get stateside fairly often (I've been lucky enough to visit all 50 states over the years) and try to get to both NFL and College games whenever I can. I'm a Giants fan, so a bit of a glutton for punishment over the last decade, but i just adore the game.
Whereabouts are you?

PS the offer applies in reverse if you're ever in UK and fancy a rugby game (my team is Harlequins, hence the avatar). I'm just outside London.
I am two-and-half hours south of Chicago and two hours west of Indianapolis in downstate Illinois. A small town just west of Champaign, IL.

I semi-frequently go to Chicago, Indy, and St. Louis if you are ever in one of those cities. I usually attend Adepticon and GenCon.

Thanks for the hospitality offer - I would love to get over there some day!

I would not mind watching a game of rugby - playing is a no go at my age!

I certainly would like to travel and game more when I retire.

PM what position you coach and what level of football - I would hate to derail the thread further ;)
 

Von Ether

Legend
Of course the latter is a lot more common these days than it used to be. Its why I figure I can probably replace the one of my two groups I've walked away from if I'm actually willing to get off my behind and do the work.
This is where a really great game store is worth its weight. If you drop by on an event night for RPGs/D&D, you can get a sense of the personalities you are meeting by the type of game/game style they are playing.

Making such games a great short cut to making new friends.
 

Giantrollorc

Explorer
I’m 54 and I’ve been retired since the age of 48 after running a very successful business. My (first world problem,taken with a grain of salt) dilemma is that all of my gaming buddies are still knee deep in their careers and group gaming time is still at a premium. Fortunately though I’ve discovered solo gaming and actually this is scratching that gaming itch. The awesome thing is that I’ve been using solo play to help prepare our campaign…. Prepping has never been so fun 🤩.
 

payn

I don't believe in the no-win scenario
I’m 54 and I’ve been retired since the age of 48 after running a very successful business. My (first world problem,taken with a grain of salt) dilemma is that all of my gaming buddies are still knee deep in their careers and group gaming time is still at a premium. Fortunately though I’ve discovered solo gaming and actually this is scratching that gaming itch. The awesome thing is that I’ve been using solo play to help prepare our campaign…. Prepping has never been so fun 🤩.
Its Beautiful Reaction GIF
 


Eyes of Nine

Everything's Fine
Adults gamers are always pining for more time to play. What happens when they retire?

Retirement Is Coming​

We've discussed previously how difficult it is for tabletop game designers to retire. But for the bulk of gamers who play as a hobby, retirement is a new stage of life that changes gaming opportunities.

The 76 million boomer generation in the U.S. have already retired of course, so they're finding out just what it means to be retired gamers. But the next generation of Gen X (my generation) is right behind them at 55 million in the U.S. alone, entering their 50s now with retirement looming large. The Millennials (62 million strong in the U.S.) are an even larger cohort. More important, people are living longer, with adults in their 60s having a roughly 50 percent chance of reaching 90. For many, they have around 20 years before their minds enter decline.

All this adds up to more retirees and more potential gamers.

What You Do in Retirement​

Being able to retire at all is a privilege. Not everyone can afford to do it, and the social safety nets in many countries have withered over time. But for those that can, retirement is a new phase in life, as lifestyles shift from working to what happens after the workforce.

Unfortunately, there are few guideposts as what retirees are supposed to do with their free time (besides keep working). Many turn to community efforts, giving back in some way. Still others pursue their hobbies -- the image of retirees golfing exists for good reason. So what do gamers do when they retire?

Game of course. Or they would, assuming they still want to.

Do You Want to Play a Game?​

Retirement often comes with adult children and grandchildren who put demands on the retirees time. And giving back to the community is a powerful pull, finding meaning in sharing experience with others. For those who can afford it, many seniors travel too.

But with the potential for a very large senior gamer cohort, the possibility of large groups of gamers finding each other over the Internet and playing more often is a real possibility. One of the players in my group is about to retire, and we're looking forward to her being able to play into the evening without worrying about going to work the next day.

We know that tabletop gaming is good for you: it establishes lifelong friendships through share experience, it helps players work through their emotions and frustrations, and--critically for retirees--it stimulates the mind. Many retirees try to keep busy to keep their minds sharp, and gaming requires full use of mental faculties.

Will we play RPGs after we retire with our newfound free time? If DndGrandma is any indication, most of us certainly will be.

Your Turn: Do you play with retirees? Do you plan to game when you are one?
I'll come back and read the other responses later, but I've had in my mind for a while that someone's missing a business opportunity - create a retirement home that's for gamers. Basically it's a non-stop gaming con... Every day Saturday (Warhammer in the morning (4am probalby), Magic in the afternoon, and D&D til we drop (which'll be around 8pm lol))
 

Racegamer

Explorer
For what it's worth: I'm 66 and currently working - In fact, I often say that I'll be working up until the day of my funeral & I'll probably be late to that...
I currently run 2 D&D games per month (@ 6 hours each), play boardgames most Friday nights (and sometimes others), race slot cars, and participate in the SCA. I go to local conventions and often work for Chessex at Gen Con - I don't see my gaming life slowing down; or changing much in the future.
 


While I do feel old quite frequently these days, I still have a few years until retirement (roughly 25, assuming they don't move the goalposts again). I'd like to think that I will still game regularly then, be it RPGs, board games or video games.
However, besides the obvious limitation of money (technically we still have a working pension system in Germany, but the cuts have been pretty massive in the past two decades, and I still have to figure out how I can both pay rent and eat more than stale bread once I retire), the main question is what my fitness level will be at that age. Because there sure is a lack of clerics casting greater restoration in real-life. So I guess, I'd better start lifting like Mr. @darjr, otherwise I'll need a community volunteer to roll my dice and fill my character sheets.
 

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