How far do you and your gaming group(s) travel to game?

edited October 2010 in Story Games
How often do you make this journey?

How happy are the group to have to make this length of journey?

If you like calculate your average player travel time (in minutes) and divide by the number of weeks between games. This will give us what I'm calling your Weekly Travel Index (WTI)!

I game with a single group (in the UK) of up to 6 people and only two of us live in the same town. We usually try to play at one guy's house in the countryside, which gives us total travel times of about 40 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 30 minutes and 25 minutes. We do this once every two weeks, with the very occasional weekend game.

Our WTI is 12.08 minutes. How happy are we? We're ok with it since it's only every two weeks.

Or maybe this is just daft!?

Oh and perhaps this is also interesting: What's the max travel time you and your group would accept to get your gaming fix? (Perhaps that's about what WTI you'd be happy with since most people are probably happy to travel for longer if they don't have to do it so often?) Another way of of looking at it would be: what WTI do you think would cause your group to splinter?

The max WTI I'd personally put up with is about 20 mins - there's dedication to the gaming cause!


  • Hmm, I dunno, this is weird and possibly interesting. Maybe daft.

    Every week I hold a game at my place on Tuesday (2 different games that run every other week), and then play a game on Thursday that's ~10min from my house. I think that people in one game don't have to travel much (maybe 15. min max) but some people in the other game have to travel significantly longer (30 min). I don't know about the Thursday game.
  • edited October 2010
    2 minutes by foot. Yeah, I'm lucky. Yeah, it's a small town. Ok, it's 5-7 minutes by foot for another dude and 6-8 minutes by bike for the third. So WTI of 5.

    I might be starting another group in the city where I study, and that will be a city-bus ride of about 20 minutes I guess. If it gets off the ground. Everyone else already lives at that location.
  • I go from work to the game which takes about 30 minutes but I stop off at Simon's office for a good hour before we move on. My journey home also takes about that time, unless I get a lift in which case it's half that. We play at Simon's house so his travel time is 0. Beth works with Simon so her travel time from the office is about 5 minutes, or 20 if we go to the supermarket on the way. Her return home takes about 40 minutes because she's not very familiar with the local area, or 10 minutes in car. The car is John's. It takes him about 20 minutes to get home but probably 30 if he drops Beth and me off somewhere. It takes Dave about 30 minutes to get here from his flat. Graham lives in a different town and it probably takes him around 90 minutes to get to the game. Those are the regulars. Adrian takes about 15 minutes by car or 45 minutes by tube but he only comes about 1 in 3 sessions. Ben plays about once a year and he lives in Paris. That takes about 4 hour by train and connections at both ends. Carol played last month. She lives in DC so it took her about 10 hours to get home from the game although she was staying in a hotel about 45 minutes away. Robin played last year and he was staying at Simon's so 0 but he does live in Toronto so about 10 hours away too. He might well play again this year making him a regular (although with a very low frequency).

    I leave the WTI as an exercise for the reader.
  • edited October 2010
    It takes me roughly 20 minutes by foot.
    I think the longest it takes anyone to get there is something like half an hour driving.
    In the past, I've driven half an hour to play in a regular (weekly, biweekly, monthly)game.
  • For my Friday group the trip is about 20 minutes in each direction, though we have one member who's commuting from Santa Cruz to San Jose, which means he's driving at least 40 minutes in each direction.

    For my Saturday group the trip is about 10 minutes in each direction.

    So my WTI would be 60 if both groups are playing consistently, though usually a bit less.
  • I plan on 30 minutes to get to Hans's place. It takes me 15-20 minutes to get home. This is the farthest I've traveled for a regular game since high school (where travel time was 90 minutes or more by public transportation, 30 minutes once I started driving all the way in). Much of my gaming history I have hosted the game at my dorm root/apartment/house.

  • edited October 2010
    It's something like 7 to 14 minutes, depending on whose house we're playing at. And I'm pretty sure everyone else is as close or closer, and the game's usually being hosted by a couple (travel time = 0 for two people), so the WTI for our group is low. Definitely below 10, even at the worst.

    The longest I've driven just for gaming is probably 45 minutes (90 minute round trip). I don't think it'd be worth making that trip for a weekly game, but for a special occasion, it was fine; I like driving and don't mind being on the road for that long, I just wouldn't want to use that much gas every week.
  • Anywhere from 10 to 90 minutes one way by subway (plenty of time to read).

    If it's a weeknight, I'm ok with a 45-60 minute commute for a 4 hour game. If it's a weekend, I can do more for an all day event.

    If my commute is only 30 minutes via subway, I feel pretty happy!

    Not driving makes a world of difference to me. If I'm walking... exercise! If I'm riding the subway... reading!

    I also host quite a bit. We have plenty of room, extra chairs, tables, and have optimized the space for gaming. When I can afford to, I'll buy snacks for people traveling longish distances as I appreciate them taking the time out of their schedule to join us!
  • 30 minutes max.
  • I play about 5 minutes from where I work, but I work an hour from where I live. I've been commuting that far for so long that it barely registers! What I'd give to game near where I live.
  • John, really good point about productively using public transit time for reading. Back in high school, I would definitely read on the bus, often on the ride home, since on my way into town, I usually made stops at the local hobby stores and often had some new module or rule book to read.

  • Half of the group depends on 1 car to get places and it is broken thus the other half drives 30-60 minutes to game, because of rush hour, at around 23 miles. This is highway travel half the distance and only takes 20 minutes to get hoe without traffic. I would be willing to drive 60 minutes to game because myself and my wife use friday nights as a girls/guys night so I spend the night hanging out with my friends and leave early in the morning.
  • Around 45 minutes to downtown Seattle where I pick up John Harper, then another 15 minutes or so to West Seattle. That means an hour for me, 15 minutes for John, and 0 for the people who's house we play at.

    WTI is 18.75, but I'm the only one driving.
  • It takes me about 13 seconds. It takes two of my players 1h 30m (Cornwall to Ottawa), and another one 2h 15m (Petawawa to Ottawa), every other or every third Sunday. I think my group might win this thing. . . .

    Just google map'd it to get distances:
    - Cornwall to Ottawa is 103 km (~60 miles)
    - Petawawa to Ottawa is 162 km (~100 miles)

    Crazy bastards.
  • Oh, and the max I would travel these days for a game would be about 45 minutes, but that's because game sessions are 3-4 hours. Were I to be in a position to do 6, 8, or even 10+ hour sessions again, I could be induced to travel up to 90 minutes.

    Is WTI for one way or both ways? For two ways, my contribution is say 45 minutes, every other week. Of course last session, it took me longer to get home because there was a major accident on the highway and the backup started JUST after an exit...

    The trip to MIT was about 18 miles driving (perhaps 19 miles if you include the side treks for game stores), that is the longest distance I have ever traveled for regular gaming. Hans's is about 9 miles (a little shorter to get there, a little longer to get home). For a while, I was traveling to gaming in Beaverton from Portland, that was about 11 miles.

  • Frank good point about whether WTI is both ways or not (in as much as something as fripperous(?) as WTI is of any interest!). I had calculated based on just one way, but it should be both really probably.

    Apart from one or two outliers I'm surprised by how short the distances people are travelling are. Especially since that US of A is so big, and there are so few of us, relatively speaking.

    GB Steve, my brain hurts reading that - flashbacks to math/s exams at school....
  • Yeah, but having more than one road in the USA helps you guys expedite travel. :P
  • edited October 2010
    Gaming usually happens at my house. For my bi-weekly game, the travel times are 10, 10 and about 40 minutes: But for the 30-40 minutes guy (Travis), my house is actually between his work and his house, so he would have made that drive anyway.

    For weekend, etc gaming the longest travellers are Lisa and Eric Provost. They have no problem driving the 30 or so minutes *into the Triangle*, then the next 10-30 minutes to actually arrive at someone's house in Durham, Chapel Hill, Raleigh, etc. I believe it's about 50 minutes from their house to mine, and vice-versa. But they love cars and driving more than most every other person I know.

  • Sure, the USA is big and sprawling, but the reality is most of us conduct our lives within a single metro area. I also suspect the larger metro areas with more traffic actually result in comparable travel times (by car at least) to metro areas around the world (I had a Scottish co-worker who regularly talked about 2 hour one way commutes to/from London - I don't think New York or LA are any worse than that...).

    Also, the day is 24 hours world round, thus affecting the maximum time spent on travel for a weekly (plus or minus) activity.

    Now if we talk about travel times for special events that occur once a year or so, I wouldn't be surprised to see longer average travel times for the USA (especially if you eliminate the "locals"). I have flown across the country to attend conventions (though folks have also flown from Australia, Asia, and Europe to those conventions). I drove from Washington DC to Indianapolis one year to go from one convention to another. Big major conventions regularly attract a good attendance from across the country, and once they reach a certain size and appeal, draw from around the world. I expect that's the same in Europe, though the smaller size of Europe probably means a shorter average travel distance.

  • For a while there if my local ~30 minute drive game didn't happen I would make a drive during rush hour over the 520 from Bellevue to Seattle to the open gaming night at the Wayward - it could take an hour and a half. Then at most half an hour back. That was two hours of driving for about three hours of playing.

    Going to Gamma Ray in Seattle is much better because I take the 90 and its more story game oriented. Double win.

    But if I hadn't found gamma ray I would still be doing the Wayward, because in a way, lately, I feel like my life is just a long drive to the next game. (It's been a week since my last game! I'm totally jonesing!) What difference does it make if I spend that time in a car or not? I exaggerate. A little.
  • I walk across the street. Sometimes I walk about 8 houses down the street. There's one game that happens every other week, and another that happens on alternate weeks. We just finished a year long game, and haven't really picked up a new one, although I'm going to playtest something tomorrow. On the alternate weeks we're playing Sorcerer. With kids, schedule glitches, and plagues abound we don't always play, though.
  • Jamie, I do 520 from Redmond to Seattle, then across the bridge to West Seattle, every Wednesday. During rush hour. I feel your pain. Luckily it's not just a gaming meetup, it's good friends and a reliable 4+ hours of gaming/talking.
  • Our WTI as formulated above is only 36 minutes. But that's misleading.

    There are five of us.

    2 of us don't have to travel because we live in the same house where the game is hosted.
    2 of us live about 30 miles away and come in the same care. I calculated them at 45 minutes each.
    1 of us lives 100 miles away and I calculated him at 90 minutes.

    We meet weekly.

    So: (45 *2) + 90 + (2 * 0) / 5 = 36 minutes.

    If remove the two of us who don't travel that jumps to a WTI of 60 mins.

  • Hi, all-

    Owning a game store means I do a LOT of gaming where people come to me.

    I do half a dozen Cons a year as work/fun hybrids, ranging from in-town to in-dianapolis, but probably 80% of my gaming happens at the store or otherwise walking distance from my apt.

    I do have a couple of friends about an hour North who occasionally host, and I just started in on an AP game with some folks I happily commute a half hour each way for the monthly session.

    Given the amount of GMing I end up doing at work, I am willing to travel 45-60 mins once or twice a month without too much griping for the chance to play in a good game someone else is running, especially Story stuff.

    -Jim C
  • I had to survey my team to gather this info, thus the delay. We meet at a game and comic shop and we play roughly every two weeks. There's some slippage though, we miss a week more often than we play two weeks in a row.

    I drive 45 miles in 60 minutes. Steve travels about 3 miles which is 20 minutes by bike or 30 by bus. Eric travels 5 miles by bike in 30 minutes. Paul drives 19 miles in 30 minutes. And Shane travels 9.5 miles in 60 minutes on the bus. Everyone reports a pretty positive experience. We're in Minnesota so winter weather can make things rough, but we're also used to it.

    WTI (using round-trip figures) is about 40.

    Dividing by weeks seems quite weird to me, but it looks like many other respondants here feel like it's valid. I'd make that drive every week and sometimes after work if my life allowed me that much time to game.
  • I travel about two hours once a month to game with a group of college friends. I take a buddy with me, but he lives about half an hour from me, so we meet in the middle before carpooling the rest of the way
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