Welcome Week One-Shots 2020 Game Listings

This is a listing of games that will be running at our Welcome Week one-shots. Sign-ups will take place live at the start of the event, following our usual format for game pitches.

To take part, please sign up to the Geas Discord at http://geas.org.uk/discord

Please note that pitches will start at 6 pm on 19 September. The post here is for information only, and sign-ups for games will happen on our Discord server after the games have been pitched.

Games listed in alphabetical order by title.

The Archmage’s Tower

System: Exodus
GM: Alexander Kiker
Description: Players will be part of a familiar group of adventurers who have come together to break into the tower of an enigmatic figure known only as the Archmage. The game is set in a fantasy world, with magic as a nearly universal part of life. There will be options for pre-generated characters with different customization options available.
Format: Voice and video preferred
Spaces: 6
Age Rating: PG
Content Advisories: The game may touch on somewhat heavy themes, such as the inevitability of death, the horrors of war, and the meaning of life, but will hopefully do so in a lighthearted manner


Crash Pandas

System: Crash Pandas
GM: Rowan Edmunds
Description: Your wacky characters have woken up as raccoons enrolled in a race for reasons. You must win. let the race begin
Format: Voice I will be using a screen share with MS paint
Spaces: 4 to 6.
Age Rating: 12
Content advisories: Dangerous behaviour


Dropzone

System: homebrew
GM: Alan Jackson
Description: Aliens. Dripping acid. Teeth in the darkness. A distant colony planet. Suddenly silences. You are the brave marines sent to rescue the survivors.
Format: Zoom
Spaces: 6.
Age Rating: 15
Content advisories: Action violence. Some horror.


The Grand Space Adventure of [Your Name Here]

System: Lasers and Feelings
GM: Emma Andersen
Description: Lasers and Feelings is a simple one-page system that tends to produce funny, chaotic games that work best when no one takes things too seriously. This oneshot should be a rollicking space adventure with undertones of cosmic horror as our spaceship crew decides what to do with a strange alien artifact, the pirate captain who wants it, and a mysterious entity known only as Something Else.
Format: Voice with video on Discord
Spaces: 5
Age Rating: 12
Content advisories: This oneshot will include elements of cosmic/eldritch horror (though no Lovecraft himself because racism is not welcome) and potential mind control/loss of bodily autonomy.


The Great Train Robbery

System: Deadlands: The Weird West
GM: Craig Barnes
Description: In the Weird West of North America it’s 1884 and societal progress is marked by miles of iron rail stretching across the continent. Nothing can stop a 10,000 ton series of reinforced train cars from reaching their destination. Except mabye you. Your Outlaws, good ones too, and if you can pull this off you’ll be set for life.
This is a Steampunk Western where you can expect an action packed train heist filled with Monsters, Magic and Mad Science. Not to mention a number of truly horrific southern accents.

Format: Roll 20, video not required but I’ll be using it.
Spaces: 6
Age Rating: 15
Content advisories: Non graphic violence


Honey Heist

System: Honey Heist
GM: Duncan Henley-Washford
Description: A super silly heist themed game. Here is the plot:
1) You have a complex plan that requires precise timing.
2) You are a GODDAMN BEAR.

Format: Voice-only and using Roll20 (…probably)
Spaces: 5
Age Rating: 15
Content advisories: Things that come up are mostly defined the players as they lead the narrative. But (mostly cartoony) violence is likely.


A Human Decision

System: systemless
GM: Milo van Mesdag
Description: As the ‘designated human decision makers’, when the energy system on your long distance space transit ship fails, it is up to you to work through the list of 50 people that you are responsible for and decide which 15 will be ‘powered down’. No monsters, no bad guys, just you, a direct video link to any of the 50 that you wish to talk to and the knowledge that by the end of it, it will be your decision which ones will live, and which ones will die.
(Note: this is a pure, probably quite brutal role-playing experience. No dice, no action, just one terrible decision to make. You will each be playing a pre-made character, each with their own motivations, secrets and history.)

Format: Video, and each player will need to be able to access a couple of Google docs.
Spaces: 6
Age Rating: 15
Content advisories: Death and sacrifice (and therefore possibly mental health and suicide, but this can depend on the group). I would prefer to avoid issues of discrimination.


Liberation

System: 7th Sea, 2nd Edition
GM: Mick Zijdel
Description: This game will be run using 7th Sea, 2nd edition: A swashbuckling and sorcery system where you play as (pirate) heroes and fight despicable evil. This game will take place in a faux-Caribbean setting called the Atabean. The game will be quite light-hearted, especially with all the memes involved. Your characters will be pre-made, but there will be a wide range of options, and the game is good for beginners. “Arrrrr mateys! Welcome to the New World! You, a crew of pirates, freedom fighters, and defenders of the weak and poor, have just liberated some goods from their previous owners. Now, sailing back to a safe haven before you encounter any of the Atabean Trading Company’s slave traders or pirate hunters, you encounter a lonely undefended merchant ship. Have you got any other choice than to take a gander?”
Format: This game will be run on Discord. I will be using a webcam and I encourage you to do so too. We will also be using Roll20 to roll and track stats.
Spaces: 4
Age Rating: 12
Content Advisories: References to slavery


Masks: Making the Grade

System: Masks: A New Generation
GM: Vivek Santayana
Description: You have just gotten your final school exam results downgraded, and you are SO NOT HAPPY ABOUT THIS. What can you, a teenager at Halcyon Secondary School, do about it? Well, for starters, you’ve got superpowers, and you’ve got your team of superhero friends. So why not take the fight against this injustice straight to the people responsible for this?
Masks is a game about teenagers navigating their self-image, relationships, and the challenges of living up to adults’ expectations while also being superheroes trying to save the world. The tone is very much like that of a comic book about teen supers like X-Men or Young Avengers. This game will look at the recent exam results scandal, and will explore the importance of friendship in dealing with hardship.

Format: Voice and video. Discord to roll dice.
Spaces: 3 to 5
Age Rating: 12
Content advisories: The game will portray recent events regarding the exam result scandal, which may be distressing to people who have just had a direct experience of them. The game may include romance depending on how players create their characters. There will be abstract, cartoon or comic book violence or threats, but no detailed or graphic depictions of violence.


Project Galileo

System: Trophy Dark
GM: Jamie Wheeler
Description: 2033, scientists on Martian research base Galileo are close to returning home. Today a drone broke through into a artificially constructed cavern. Find proof of intelligent life, achieve scientific glory, die on an alien planet. Science fiction horror
Format: Voice/video
Spaces: 5
Age Rating: 18
Content Advisories: I don’t understand the BBFC rating system or how it would apply in advance to a game constructed on the fly, so I just put 18 to cover any self destructive behaviour that comes up.


Sapphire & Steel

System: Home-brewed diceless
GM: Roderick Easton
Description: Beings from beyond the corridor of time are trying to break in to destroy it. Elemental agents of reality are sent to potential breaches where they must find out what the problem is and resolve it before it is too late. Odd things are happening on a freighter sailing through the so-called Bermuda Triangle and a group of agents arrive.
“All irregularities will be handled by the forces controlling each dimension. Transuranic heavy elements may not be used where there is life. Medium atomic weights are available: Gold, Lead, Copper, Jet, Diamond, Radium, Sapphire, Silver and Steel. Copper and Jet have been assigned.

Format: voice or video, I’ll share pre-genned sheets on Google drive
Spaces: 2 to 5.
Age Rating: 12


A Thief of Many Faces

System: Blades in the Dark
GM: Manuel Tarazona Querol
Description: In the dark and dreary city of Doskvol, the story of the Vixen, a legendary thief, is one of the few things that bring hope to its citizens. However, it is just a story, so the players have all decided to take up her mantle. Independently from each other. And rob the same place. At the same time.
Shenanigans ensue in a gritty setting and system.
Format: Video optional; will use roll20
Spaces: 4
Age Rating: 15


The Trainwreck

System: Call of Cthulhu 7th ed
GM: Jules
Description: Call of Cthulhu is a relatively grim system (and you don’t have to familiar with it – I’ll explain the rules if needed), with Lovecraftian lore and where too much knowledge can lead to a fate worse than death. In this game, I would rely more on investigation and roleplay – no gore, but plenty of ways to lose sanity (as characters) nonetheless. More of a thriller than horror. I have prepared some pre-generated characters (you’re welcome to modify them if you will), so we don’t waste time and I hope you’d join me.
The story starts in February of 1926 in a small mountain town, Sunrock – too forgettable to be included in the maps, with not more than half a thousand people currently living in it. First founded by the gold diggers, currently, the life of the town is centred around the old mines, where some mineral valuables are still to be found.
A fair question to ask would be, what brings the Investigators to this hellhole of a place, especially during the winter months when even the nature couldn’t be fully enjoyed, as the cold, snowy clutches of frost forbid the few exciting activities you could find in the town.
Well, everyone felt taking this job was a bad idea, but everyone had their reasons to do so. The Investigators set out to search for Jamie Davenport – a prised geology student, who left for this town about three and a half weeks ago to collect some data for his diploma and disappeared without a trace. Will it be his loving family, a brave detective or his academic rival, who’d find him? Or will they all disappear without a trace as well? Join the game to find out.

Format: Discord (voice only) and roll20
Spaces: 3 to 5
Age Rating: 15
Content advisories: Darkness, confined spaces, blood, ghosts (maybe) and an array of phobias and mental traumas for your characters


You Awaken in a Strange Place…

System: You awaken in a strange place’
GM: Yves-Pearl Hurley
Description: You awaken in a strange place’ perhaps its the galley of a spaceship cruising through the stars thousands of years from now, or maybe you’ve come to in a dingy basement you don’t recognise. Maybe its 1888 and Jack the Ripper is terrorising London or perchance a powerful sorcerer has awoken you from a slumber you don’t recall falling into….
‘You awaken in a strange place’ is a completely improvised one shot game system. No prior experience of TTRPGs necessary, no ruleset to read and only one d6 needed to play. As such its RP focused improv type game great for people who are into the storytelling part of TTRPGs, vets who want to try that out or anyone who’s new and wants to get straight into playing without having to be an expert or know a game by heart.
Format: voice only or video, depends on the group. No other tools needed,
Spaces: 5
Age Rating: 15
Content advisories: As the game is improvised I would like to have the opportunity to ask players to let me know privately anything that they would like me not to include. I always veto discussions of suicide, assault and anything happening to underage characters with a new group.

GMs Wanted: Welcome Week One Shots

Greetings Adventurers,

(Tl;dr version: We need GMs to run one-shots, so why not submit a game!)

We have our Welcome Week One Shots on Saturday evening at 6 pm on our Discord server. If you’re new to Geas or role-playing, and want to see what it’s like, or if you are a veteran member and want to play a short game, you’re all welcome to the event.

As always, we need GMs to run games at the event! We’d love to have as many different games on offer for our new members, so that everyone finds something they’d enjoy playing. Also, newcomers to Geas are also welcome to run games! You don’t have to be a veteran member to be a GM, and if you are new to the Society you are still able to run games if you’d like!

If you would like to run a one-shot, you are welcome to submit a game to us via our on-line form. This is a fantastic opportunity to get to know new members, try out GMing if you haven’t GMed before, or maybe even try out a game or system you haven’t played before. You can submit a game via: http://geas.org.uk/freshers

Because we are running on-line this year, we need all our games sent in to us in advance so we can set up our Discord. So the deadline to submit games is tomorrow (Friday) at 6 pm.

Thank you to all the GMs who have already submitted games for the event. It’s great to see such a wide variety of games so far. I will be in touch tomorrow once submissions close with more details.

Finally, the deadline for submissions for our regular campaigns is also fast approaching. If you are considering running a campaign this semester, you will need to submit your games to us by Tuesday 22 September for the Wednesday slots, and Saturday 26 September for the Sunday slots. We will send around a similar reminder closer to the day.

We are really grateful to all our GMs for the time and energy they put in to run games at our events. We look forward to seeing you on Saturday, and receiving your game pitches!

Hail the Dice Gods,
Vivek Santayana
Equality and Wellbeing Officer

Livestream TONIGHT

Hello there, adventurers!

Tonight our Webmaster, Alan Jackson, will be leading the committee through the fight for freedom in a gritty cyberpunk future. The team has the skills to win the battle; their only disadvantage is that they’re cats…

You can find us live on Twitch from 6pm BST here: https://www.twitch.tv/geaslive

During the stream, we’ll also be taking donations for Maggie’s, a cancer support charity that is still providing care during this time. You can find out more about the work they do on their website: https://www.maggies.org/

In the meantime, you can get to know the cats over on our Facebook, where we’ve been posting their bios: https://www.facebook.com/geasedinburgh

There you can also find the stream poster made by our own Amy McMonagle, who created all the art for this event.

Claws out!

Sophie Hine
GEAS Secretary

A Call for One Shot GMs and Memberships Are Now Live

Hey, adventurers!
I’d just like to say a quick thank you to those who have already signed up to run games for the Welcome Week event and this semester’s campaigns. Your support means a lot to us as we make the move online.
We Need You (to GM)
Our traditional evening of one shots will be taking place on the 19th September, running from 6pm till 10pm. Due to current restrictions it’ll be hosted on GEAS’s Discord server but should run in much the same manner that it normally does. We’re looking for GMs to run games on the night, with a game lasting around 3 hours. Anyone is welcome to GM regardless of experience or how new they are to the society.

However, we ask that GMs remember that they will be gaming with a lot of freshers and people they haven’t met before, so it may be a good idea to err on the side of caution in terms of content and themes that could be distressing. As usual all games need to abide by our Game Safety Policy, which can be accessed here: http://geas.org.uk/safety

Game submissions will close at 6pm on the 18th September, so that the server moderators can get the Discord set up. This unfortunately means we won’t be accepting games on the evening of the event. Submissions can be made here:
http://geas.org.uk/freshers

You can join the GEAS Discord server where we’ll be hosting the event here:
http://geas.org.uk/discord

Finally, details about how we’re making the move online can be found in our September newsletter:
http://geas.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/2020-09-Newsletter.pdf

Memberships Are Now on Sale
Memberships are finally on available to buy via the EUSA webstore! The society voted last month to reduce membership fees for the upcoming academic year, as a result the fees for both students and non-students will be as follows:

First Semester: £0
Second Semester: £1.50
Full Year: £1.50

Although the first semester is effectively free, we still need you to ‘purchase’ your membership. This is to make sure that we have a full list of members and can make appropriate room bookings for the second semester, should we be able to meet in person.

With that in mind, please go to the webpage below to confirm your membership:
https://www.eusa.ed.ac.uk/activities/societies/society/httpwwwgeasorg/

May the dice be ever in your favour,
Sophie Hine
GEAS Secretary

Newsletter and A Call for GMs

Hey there, adventurers!
In the lead up to the start of term, the committee have put together a newsletter to welcome our new members and introduce ourselves to the society.

As President and Editor-in-Chief, Robyn started the newsletter by addressing the challenges that current events have set ahead of us and how we plan to work through them. The committee answered some revealing and hard-hitting questions, such as what would our role be in an adventuring party? Spoilers: we don’t make a balanced group.

Vivek has put together some guidance about our move to Discord for the first semester, from how exactly pitches will work to how we’re going to keep the platform safe to use. Our Events and Socials co-ordinators have included details of what’s coming up in the GEAS calendar in the next few months. We also have some community submitted systems reviews to inspire your upcoming campaigns.

The newsletter can be found at: http://geas.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/2020-09-Newsletter.pdf

GM Sign Ups
While we’re here, we’re still looking for GMs to sign up to run both Welcome Week one shots and campaigns for this semester. Submissions will be open until 24 hours before the event is due to start.

The one shot event will be taking place on Saturday the 19th September from 6pm-10pm, games can be submitted here: http://geas.org.uk/freshers

While this semester’s campaigns will start on the dates below and can be submitted here: http://geas.org.uk/pitches

  • Wednesday games from 6pm till 10pm, starting on the 23rd September.
  • Sunday afternoon games from 1pm till 5pm, starting on the 27th September.
  • Sunday evening games from 6pm till 10pm, also starting on the 27th September.

Keep safe out there,
Sophie Hine
GEAS Secretary

Game Submissions Are Open

Hail and well met, adventurers!

As a follow up to yesterday’s email, we now have forms available online for GMs to submit their games for the Welcome Week one shots and this semester’s campaigns.

Welcome Week

The one shot event will be taking place on Saturday the 19th September from 6pm till 10pm, they will be hosted online on the GEAS Discord server which can be found at:
http://geas.org.uk/discord

Games can be submitted until 6pm on the 18th September at:
http://geas.org.uk/freshers

September Pitches
This year’s pitches will also be held on the GEAS Discord server, with games running to the normal schedule:

  • Wednesday games from 6pm till 10pm, starting on the 23rd September.
  • Sunday afternoon games from 1pm till 5pm, starting on the 27th September.
  • Sunday evening games from 6pm till 10pm, also starting on the 27th September.

Games for these sessions can be submitted below, with submissions closing 24 hours before that pitch is due to start:
http://geas.org.uk/pitches

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us on our Discord or via this email address.

May the dice be with you,
Sophie Hine
GEAS Secretary

Start of Term Events and Membership Fee Ballot Results

Greetings, adventurers!
We’ve got a big update for you today, including ballot results and the all-important dates for GEAS returning in the new term. A summary has been included at the bottom for a quick overview, but please refer back to the main body for more details.

Moving to Discord
Over the summer the committee have been preparing to move GEAS entirely online for the upcoming semester, as the university has advised all societies to host their events online whenever social distancing guidelines can’t be met. This means that for the foreseeable future all GEAS events will be held on our Discord server, which can be accessed at: http://geas.org.uk/discord

Discord does require for you to have an account; a basic account is free and all you need to join our server. We have several service bots running to help moderate the server and two dice bots to make sure you can always keep playing. Vivek put together some fantastic resources on the server, explaining how to game safely online and make the most of the resources available.

Welcome Week Events
Members of the committee will be appearing on GEASLive, the society’s Twitch channel, for a night of gaming and shenanigans. You can find us all at 6pm on the 15th September, at the link: https://www.twitch.tv/geaslive

Our traditional Welcome Week one shots will be taking place on the 19th September, running from 6pm till 10pm. This will be hosted on the Discord server and will run in much the same manner that you can expect from the term time campaigns. We’re asking any GMs interested in running a one shot to register their game with us 24 hours in advance, so that the server moderators have time to prepare the game channels. More information on how to do this will come out closer to Welcome Week.

Game Pitches
Our regular weekly sessions will begin at 6pm on the 23rd September for Wednesday games, 1pm on the 27th September for Sunday afternoon games, followed by 6pm evening pitches. GMs will need to submit their games to the committee 24 hours in advance of when they are to be pitched, to allow server moderators to set up the correct channels and grant GMs the right permissions.

We’re currently working on a detailed explanation on how the pitches will be handled on the night, which will be released in the coming weeks, but please rest assured that a lot of effort has gone into preserving the spirit of the event. GMs will be able to pitch their game via video chat if they’re comfortable doing so. New members will then get first pick as usual, with returning members filling the remaining spaces.

Start of Term Social
We’ll also be hosting our first social of the year on the GEAS Discord server on the 26th September from 7pm onwards. This will be run in a similar format to our online social earlier this summer, with a main channel for voice chat and ‘breakout rooms’ available for smaller groups to hang out in. This will be a great chance to catch up with those you haven’t seen over the summer and to meet some incoming members.

Ballot Results
Thank you to everyone who participated at such short notice in our on-line ballot to reduce our membership fees. We appreciate the support from our members in helping us run the Society, and the way this is reflected in the strong turnout for the ballot.

The ballot to reduce the membership fees for the forthcoming academic year has been carried. Full details of the results can be found at the following link: http://geas.org.uk/fees
The membership fees in the forthcoming academic year for both students and non-students will be as follows:

First Semester: £0
Second Semester: £1.50
Full Year: £1.50

Committee will now write to EUSA to request that the membership fees are updated in the Societies Portal. Once this has been updated, we will let our members know when they should start buying their membership. Please remember to check on the Announcements channel on our Discord for further updates (http://geas.org.uk/discord).

Even though there is no fee for membership in the first semester, we still need members to ‘buy’ membership from the EUSA portal so they can be registered as our members. This is to ensure EUSA has a record of our membership numbers, so that they can take this into account when allocating us venues for the subsequent semester.

Summary

  • We have a Discord and that’s where we’re running for now. Please assume all events are being hosted there, unless explicitly told otherwise. Link to join: http://geas.org.uk/discord
  • A Committee Liveplay is going to be happening at 6pm on the 15th September. Come for the comedy, stay for the chaos. Link: https://www.twitch.tv/geaslive
  • Welcome Week one shots are at 6pm on the 19th September. We’d sure love to have some new players, so bring your friends and spread the word.
  • Campaign pitches will be at 6pm on the 23rd September for Wednesday sessions, with Sunday pitches on the 27th September; starting at 1pm for afternoon sessions and 6pm for evening ones.
  • The start of term social will be held on the 26th September at 7pm. Not as intimate as a pub social, but a chance to catch up with folks and get some of that social interaction we’ve all been craving.
  • The society voted in favour of lowering this year’s membership fees. The first semester is effectively free, but please make sure you register for the society by ‘buying’ your membership via the EUSA portal. This is key to getting rooms for next semester.

If you have any questions about the move online or anything else, please reach out to us at geas.committee or at our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/geasedinburgh/

For the glory of GEAS,
The GEAS Committee

Virus-free. www.avast.com

Membership Fees and RPG System Reviews

Hey there adventurers!

I hope you’re all enjoying the summer and any games you’re playing. I’ve got a quick reminder for you and an opportunity to get involved in a new project the committee has planned.

Reducing Membership Fees

We currently have a ballot running to reduce membership fees for the 2020-21 academic year, with voting closing this coming Monday at 5pm. As GEAS is moving online for the first semester and won’t have any venues, we felt it would be fair to our members to lower membership fees.

The proposed memberships fees for both student and non-student members are:

Full year: £1.50

Semester 1: £0

Semester 2: £1.50

As our membership fees are set in the GEAS constitution, we require the proposal to be voted on and to achieve a two-thirds majority at a General Meeting. This is being carried out in the same manner as the AGM we held earlier in the year, with all paid student members for the 2019-20 year able to cast their vote via the University of Edinburgh’s Office365 portal. You can access the ballot using your UoE email account at the following link: http://geas.org.uk/fees

The ballot will remain open till 5pm on 24th August.

Call for RPG System Reviews

As GEAS is moving online for the new semester, we’re putting together a newsletter to help inspire your gaming and ease the transition into this new style of play.

Online gaming brings its own challenges and not all systems survive the change of platform, so we’re looking for short reviews of RPG systems you’ve enjoyed playing online. Whether it’s a well-loved classic, a new system, or a little-known gem, we’d love to hear about your experience.

Submissions can be sent to the committee via email at geas.committee or through our Facebook page at , either as a private message or as a comment on this post. Please keep your reviews to less than 100 words and let us know how you would like to be credited, e.g. with your full name or anonymously. Unfortunately, we can’t guarantee your review will be published but all submissions will be considered for inclusion.

The deadline for system reviews is 1st September at 6pm.

Stay well and keep rolling,

Sophie Hine

GEAS Secretary

Reducing Membership Fees, On-Line Ballot

Greetings Adventurers!

(Link to on-line ballot on reducing membership fees: http://geas.org.uk/fees)

As you are already aware, Geas is going to be moving on-line for semester 1 in the forthcoming academic year. We understand that this will significantly affect our members’ experience of the society. Considering we won’t have any venues for the first semester, we felt it would be fair for our members if we reduced the membership fees for the forthcoming year.

For the 2020-21 academic year, we are proposing to reduce the membership fees for both student and non-student members to the following:

Full year: £1.50
Semester 1: £0
Semester 2: £1.50.

Because our membership fees are set in the Geas Constitution, we will require the proposal to be ratified by a two-thirds majority at a General Meeting. As most of our members are away during the summer, we are conducting this via an on-line ballot as we did for our AGM a few months ago. All paid student members for the 2019-20 academic year (i.e. any student who was a paid member last year) will be able to vote in the ballot. We regret that, owing to EUSA’s regulations, non-student members will not be able to vote in this ballot.

The ballot will be conducted using the University of Edinburgh’s Office365 portal, and you will be able to log in via your University email account. You can access the ballot at the following link: http://geas.org.uk/fees

The deadline for votes to be cast is 5 pm on 24 August 2020, to comply with the requirement to give two weeks’ notice for an EGM.

As membership dues might be subject to change, we request all members to hold off on buying their membership for the forthcoming year until September. If you have any questions or have any difficulties accessing the ballot, please feel free to get in touch with us.

We appreciate your time and support in helping us run the Society. We look forward to seeing you all (virtually) in the new semester!

We hope you are all well and looking after yourselves and your loved ones.

For Geas, and for Glory,
The Geas Committee

Moving Geas On-Line for Semester 1

Greetings Adventurers!

(In this email: migrating Geas to Discord for the new semester, survey on the challenges to moving on-line)

The Eusa Societies Team has been in touch with us, and they are advising societies that cannot social distance at their events to move their activities on-line for the first semester. As there is still uncertainty as to what the University will look like in the forthcoming semester, and how Eusa venues like Teviot or Pleasance will be running, we have decided to move Geas on-line for the first semester of the forthcoming academic year. In the coming weeks, we will be making preparations to transition our activities on-line. We will monitor the situation going forward and see whether or not it will be feasible for us to return to meeting in person from the second semester based on the guidance from the University, as well as any relevant government restrictions or guidelines.

Migrating to Discord

What this means is that for the first semester, all Geas events will be held on-line on our Discord server. We have run a number of events on our Discord server, and we have subsequently moved our summer games on-line. We are confident that this should be viable, although we appreciate that the experience will be very different, and there will be a number of challenges to this. We would appreciate any feedback or suggestions our members will have.

For our Discord, this is what we are currently planning:

  1. Having designated public channels that will be open to everyone, as well as sections of the server which will be for paid Geas members only.
  2. Having server bots that will make the moderation and management of the server easier
  3. Running our regular weekly Wednesday and Sunday gaming slots on our Discord server at the usual times, with Committee members present to help if there are any issues.
  4. Having dedicated text and voice channels for all games run at Geas, along with dice bots so people can run their games on the Geas Discord without having to buy personal subscriptions for platforms like Zoom.
  5. Creating a system by which we can host our game pitches and sign-ups on-line in real time
  6. Hosting events like one-shots and/or socials, on our Discord.
  7. Custom commands for members to raise concerns or issues of their safety on the server or in their games.

You can join the Geas Discord here: https://discord.gg/9QCrnK6

Our plan is to make sure the Geas discord is as close a simulation to our regular, in-person activities as possible by moving our pitches, games and other events on to Discord. As with our usual events, we will have all of our Discord server open until after the first couple of weeks of term, when we will start enforcing membership and restrict the members’ only sections. We will also ensure that the on-line spaces on Discord will be a safe and welcoming environment, especially considering that for most people this might be the only interaction they have with Geas and other members. This will mean some revamping of our Discord and the way we run it, as well as some formalising of rules for the server to ensure consistency with our Society policies as well as Eusa’s guidelines.

We are planning to revamp the Discord server in two weeks’ time on 20 July. During this revamp, we will be closing down access to the Discord server for a couple of days while we rebuild all the channels, roles, and permissions for the server. If you are running your summer game on the Geas Discord, please be aware that this might cause some disruptions.

We welcome any feedback or concerns our members may have, as well as input on what features they would like to see implemented in the Discord.

Challenges of Moving On-Line

We acknowledge that playing games on-line won’t be the same as meeting in-person. Not only is it a different environment, but can be especially challenging for people with cognitive or sensory difficulties. Further to our preparations of migrating Geas activities on-line, we are also going to survey our members about their experiences of on-line gaming over the summer so that we can identify any challenges our members might face during this transition and support our members in addressing these concerns.

We will use information from this survey to plan how we organise our on-line events, as well as what adjustments we would need to make in order to make sure that they are as inclusive and accessible as possible.

You can find the survey here: http://geas.org.uk/onlinesurvey

Moving Forward

While we acknowledge that moving Geas on-line is far from ideal, we believe it is the best option that we have in the current circumstances and avoiding risks to our members’ health. Moreover, this also gives us an opportunity for members of Geas who have moved away from Edinburgh to get involved with the Society’s events once again, and to participate in our weekly games or one-shots. We understand that there will be challenges to this, and hopefully we will all be able to deal with any such challenges proactively.

Any Questions?

If you have any questions, concerns, or feedback, you are welcome to email us and a member of the Committee will get back to you.

You want games? We’ll give you games!
Vivek Santayana
Equality and Wellbeing Officer, 2020-21.