Some people know how to ruin a perfectly good party.
This person, as a rule, will always be attending your game or event. How to deal with them safely and legally could have serious ramifications, so it’s important you not only have a battle plan for when it happens, but an understanding of those ramifications. Poor planning will allow a bad incident to overshadow your game or event. It will become a defining moment, and the only thing your event will be remembered for; after all of that work you did, don’t you deserve better? So sit down a moment, draw a pint, and let’s talk about how to deal with your rowdy player problem.
Why on Earth am I qualified to talk about this? I used to work as a supervisor for a company doing section 8 housing policing, I was a bouncer, and I just finished a combat tour in Afghanistan. This stuff relates a bit; but me and mine have run security at some fairly notable national-level fighting events. We go places and run the show so that event staff doesn’t have to worry about it. The Forsaken of Belegarth and Dagorhir have our fingers in a lot of pies, and our experiences have taught me a lot about doing this stuff safely.
And half the guys I deal with are drunk.
Let’s set the stage and discover the types of risks which are present at your event. Some of them you may not have even thought of. This is the first stage in any risk assessment (which is essentially what we are doing):
- The players: Your players’ emotions are going to be a roller coaster through this event. Part of it is the emotional charge that is associated with doing something new, or something that you love to do. People are passionate, and when passions run high, dispute happens. This is especially true in serious cases, such as permanent character death. Player arguments are going to happen, and there need to be measures in place to resolve them.
- What about townies? Anyone that runs particularly large events that are open to the public, or have public visibility, will tell you that the locals are going to wander onto site and they are going to cause an issue. They aren’t going to get what you’re doing, and their reactions will be varied. They may try feebly to understand and grow frustrated, or they may just make fun of you for dressing silly and try to have a good ole time by whizzing in your cheerios. How much access will non players have to your site, and how can you maintain safety while trying to teach the mundanes a new trick?
- Alcohol and drugs: Is there a policy for these in your game? Substances greatly elevate any situation when done to excess. Personally, I like games that let me drink, but there need to be serious safeguards to responsible usage. If someone is intoxicated, what is the plan? If it can be contained, get them to their camp, get them with more sober friends, make them responsible and accountable, and remove all of them from play. You cannot reason with a drunk; you can only contain and monitor them.
Insider Threat, Outsider Threat, Substance Issues. We can handle them all. Let’s do this.