LAN Party FAQ

What do you do at LAN parties?

We play multiplayer video games!

The idea is to play these games strictly with other people at the party, so that you can actually talk to your teammates and yell at your opponents.  Unlike playing on the internet, the environment is friendly, and you never need to worry that someone may be cheating.

In addition to playing games, we also hang out, socialize, and eat pizza.  It's entirely up to you whether you want to focus on playing or spend more time just chatting.

Are your parties open to the public?

No.  Sorry, you must be invited.

What do I need to know to go to a LAN party?

NOTHING!  You don't need to know anything at all.  Just show up and we'll show you what to do.

Do I need to be good at games?

No!  We play lots of light games that don't require much skill in the first place as well as cooperative and team games where we can easily balance things for any skill level.  Many people have attended without any gaming experience and had fun.

Are you guys all hardcore gamers?

No!  I, Kenton, only play multiplayer video games at LAN parties.  I never play on the internet, partly because I don't enjoy playing with people I don't know, and partly because internet people are usually much better than me.  Many of my friends are similar -- we are hackers and geeks who like playing video games from time to time and maybe grew up with them, but do not play every day and are by no means experts.

What games do you play?

Anything you want!  Common games include Overwatch, Ark, Factorio, The Showdown Effect, Titanfall, Atlas Reactor, Duck Game, Nidhogg, Left 4 Dead 2, Team Fortress 2, Starcraft 2, Natural Selection 2, League of Legends, Borderlands 2, Unreal Tournament 2004, Grand Theft Auto 2, Mount and Blade: Warband, Altitude, Hoard, Awesomenauts, Duke Nukem 3D, Quake, Tribes: Ascend, or basically anything people want to play.  If you suggest something, I'll install it ahead of time.

How should I prepare?

You really don't have to prepare anything or buy any games in advance, since this can all be done at the party.  However, if you have some extra time, consider making sure you have a functioning Steam account.  You will need to log into it at the party in order to play your own legally-obtained games.

Wait, I need to buy games?

Not necessarily.  We play many games that are free, and if you really don't want to buy anything, you can probably convince people to stick to free games.  Team Fortress 2, League of Legends, Altitude, and Tribes: Ascend are examples of free games.  Most games that cost money go for $10-$30.

What do I need to bring?

Nothing.  All necessary equipment is built into the house.

I usually shoot to have a few more people at the party than I have machines, for maximum utilization.  Usually, when the machines are full, the remaining people just take a break and wait for the next round.  But, if you have a gaming-capable laptop that is easy to carry, consider bringing it along.  Then, you can keep gaming the whole time.

If I bring a laptop, how should I prepare it?

First, install Steam.  Then, if there is a specific game you're hoping to play, install that.  Otherwise, you need not bother installing anything in particular.  It's easiest to wait to see what we end up playing, and then copy over the data files for that game on-demand from the server.  Steam makes this pretty easy.

Is there food?

Yes!  There are lots of snacks, beverages, and alcohol, and we will order pizza from Papa John's for dinner.

Should I bring snacks/drinks/booze?

If you want.  People usually end up bringing way more snacks and drinks than are consumed, so I've got quite a stockpile going.

Should I give you money?

I accept donations, but I don't keep track of who donated and who didn't.  I'd much rather that you show up and not contribute than not show up at all!

What time should I show up?

Up to you.  Most parties are officially scheduled from noon to midnight.  Usually a couple people will show up in the first hour while others will not come until the evening.  Some people leave early, others stay late.