You reserved The Mansion for 6 people and you and your crew are really excited to see how well you can work together. You’re going to beat this room, you can feel it! When you arrive at the North location to your surprise you are playing with 2 other people. Strangers! They are sitting right there and seem to be nice enough but they are still strangers! You don’t want them to ruin your plans…
You express concerns of playing with other people to the person at the front desk: “The website showed there were only 6 spots available. We wanted to be in the room by ourselves. We didn’t know we’d be playing with other people…” The staff explain The Mansion has a max of 8 people and 2 spots were taken when you made your reservation. Despite your disappointment, you put on a happy face, meet your new partners in crime and go to play the room anyway.
Does this sound familiar?
We understand that it can be disappointing or even frustrating to realize that you’ll have to spend an hour working in a room with strangers but here are a few things to keep in mind:
1. Most times, when people play with strangers they have a wonderful time and everyone is working together well. We’ve even had instances when people exchange phone numbers and email addresses!
2. Many of our record holders are strangers who were combined. How can that be? We think there are a few reasons. One is that people might be on their best behavior, trying to impress strangers. It could also be because strangers will look at things in a way that is different from how you and your group would look at things. Finally, it’s likely also because in any room that’s not fully linear, there are more than one task that can be worked on. Oftentimes, the smaller groups will divide naturally and work on simultaneous tasks.
Are there instances when strangers didn’t work out well? Indeed, there are and that’s always unfortunate. Our briefings do mention playing nice with strangers and our game masters are always watching for the quality of interactions when strangers are concerned. But if a group chooses to not play nice, the only thing we can do is make things right by the group who was overpowered.
Now, if you absolutely do not want to play with strangers, here’s what you can do: book all the spots! Look at the room description to see how many spots there are in the room you want to play and make sure to book all of them. When you check in, you’ll pay the regular $25/person and you’ll also pay $12.50 for each spot that you booked but are not using.