I wrote about alternating games back in 2005, and my group has been doing just that for nearly two years now. In that time, I’ve noticed a few things:
Communication is key. It’s obvious, but it’s easy to miss. When we started alternating games, everyone assumed our two GMs were confirming whose turn it was each week, and that led to some confusion and the occasional missed session. Now, we all make an effort to bring this up at the end of each session — “We’re playing X next week, right?”
The mix may change. Since we started doing this, the arrangement has gone from true alternation (1, 2, 1, 2) to game 1 in the main spot (1, 1, 2, 1) to game 2 in the main spot (2, 2, 1, 2) — or at least, that’s been my perception (I wasn’t running either game). In any case, those changes haven’t been a bad thing, and now I know to anticipate that when we alternate games.
There won’t be fewer breaks. As TT reader Vanir put it in a recent comment, for his group March is “a gatling gun filled with D&D-destroying birthday parties.” For us, that’s been this past July and August — and having two games on the go didn’t reduce the number of weekends we missed.
Variety rocks. I suspected we’d like the variety of having two wildly different games — different GMs, systems, styles, moods, everything — and it’s been good to see that hunch borne out. If you’ve never tried the two-game model, it’s worth it for this reason alone.
Does your group alternate games? How has it gone for you?