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Running games in your own home.

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I have been DMing for a very long time. Previously my gaming groups have consisted of friends and family all gathered in my mother's living room. When I moved out it migrated to my own living room. Now that I have my own place and plenty of room, the perfect table, miniatures, battle mats, scenery, books, and everything else you need I am hesitant to let strangers into my house to game. Especially since my daughter (Now over a month old) is born and in the house.

On top of the time restraints and feeding a hungry screaming newborn I am afraid to let people I don't know into my home. My entire gaming group, which consisted of my brother and his friends, has moved. So obviously I have no choice but to search elsewhere for a group. Also on the obvious note it's hard for me to help my wife care for our daughter if I'm not home.

So in the end I suppose that I could meet the players before hand somewhere else just to get a feel for them but how much can you know about a person when you first meet them for a few minutes.

My alternative is video conferencing with Skype. Either way it is going to be difficult to coordinate. So my question for the community out there is this: How have your experiences in either of these scenarios panned out?

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  1. wizarddog's Avatar
    Meet with potential players in a neutral place (i.e. coffee shop) beforehand so you get a feel for them and their personality. You might also look to other gamers who are married or have children of their own, who would at least understand your home setting and values.

    There is also the possibility of you taking a break from gaming until the baby gets older and you feel comfortable having strangers (i.e. Baby sitters) being around your child. I basically stopped gaming after my daughter was born and basically missed out on 2nd edition (returned at 3rd edition). I don't feel it was major lost
  2. LordNightwinter's Avatar
    That's where I'm headed right now, at least until she gets to the toddling stage or so. I'm heavily leaning toward Skype.
  3. Wing's Avatar
    I'm in agreement with wizarddog, meet players in a neutral place first. I gave a try a year ago and within a week had 7 interested players in my area. We are still gaming together after a year. Before that I tried Skype, but that did not work out too well. You really don't get an accurate feel for who is playing in your game when its long distance over the internet. At least with Meetup, problem players tend to be known and identified, so it is much safer than any other method I've tried (including Craigslist, local newspapers, community boards).
  4. LordNightwinter's Avatar
    I take it you didn't know the players/dm for the Skype session? I have a group that is Skype-able that I am familiar with. They just all went into the Air Force around the same time and left me here to game alone in a cold dark corner.