How to Write a Recruitment Thread

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May 12, 2021 12:01 am
So, you have an idea for a new game and now you’re ready to assemble a player group. An effective recruitment post can help you find the right people and get your game off to the right start!
Finding the right players is the first step towards a great game.

When advertising your game include the following information:

✅ The Game System and Rules Version. Put this right in the post title to catch the attention of fans of that system (and not waste other people’s time).

✅ The Pitch. Post a brief and evocative game hook. Convey to players the game’s tone, genre, playstyle, and other elements you are trying to achieve with your game.

✅ Adult Content or Controversial Themes. If you’re including this kind of content, you want players that are 100% onboard. Put this up front and center - you shouldn’t spring this kind of information on people after they join the game.

Also, if you have made a game forum already, make sure to include a link to your recruitment thread in the Game Details page. That way, if people find the game forum first, they will know how to apply correctly.
Pictures can convey mood and setting better than words ever can! And it breaks up big blocks of text.

Not every GM has the following things set in stone from the start. If you do, make sure to communicate them in your post, and if you don’t, let people know they are up for debate:

✅ Character Restrictions. Let people know whether you are using pregen characters, disallowing certain character options, starting at a particular level, outlawing certain alignments, including custom "homebrew" content, or any other restrictions / expectations around character creation that are specific to this game.

✅ Game Duration and Post Frequency. Clearly outline what kind of time commitment this game will be. Is it an ongoing campaign, a limited run game, or a series of episodes? And how often do you expect your players to post? Declaring this up front will increase the odds you will find players that will keep up with your chosen pace and stay the course.

✅ Specialized Software and Resources. If you require players to use additional platforms like Roll20 or Discord, tell them now.

✅ Player Experience Requirements. Is your game open to anyone, or do you only want experienced players on this adventure?

✅ How to Apply. Tell people if applying to this game is first come first served, or if you have an application process. Clearly state what the process is (sample character concepts, answers to questions, writing samples, etc.) and how they should send them to you.

✅ Welcome Marginalized Groups. Consider explicitly labelling your game as welcoming of marginalized groups, especially if you are presenting a world that represents all walks of life and doesn't hesitate to allow players to express those qualities in their characters. bowlofspinach put it this way: "This game is explicitly friendly to LGBT and any other minorities or marginalized groups."
Okay, you've assembled the dream team! Now what?

When you have recruited all of your players, please conclude your thread with a message saying that you have filled all the available player slots. When you contact your chosen players, it is good practice to post or send a link to the game details page as sometimes the game invite emails do not reach the recipients. That way players can still accept the invite.

Here are some examples of effective recruitment posts:

bowlofspinach's "The Wildsea"

bowlofspinach's "Tales from the Flood"

Caystodd's "Beneath Curnbrey Citadel"

Runekyndig's "Spelljammer: This Isn't Waterdeep?"
This guide was written with support and feedback from many community members - thank you! If you'd like to give additional feedback, if you'd like advice about your recruitment thread, or if you want to talk about recruitment threads in general, I made a thread for that over here. Happy gaming everyone!

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