Do you like playing games? Do you enjoy cooking? Do you like to occasionally have more than just soda pop and potato chips as snacks for game night? In this Monday blog series, game industry personalities will be sharing some of their favorite recipes for game night munchies. Welcome to Gaming Gastronomy! This week I am taking a break from the recipes to discuss a sometimes funny and sometimes heated topic: what foods are allowed at game night.
The purpose of the Gaming Gastronomy series has been about sharing food and fellowship during game night. Yet, depending who you talk to, there can be snacks that many deem inappropriate for game night. I have received some interesting emails on this topic and had conversations with my game group in the past, thus the genesis of this post. I find these “problem foods” come in two categories: Foods that should not be at the table, and Foods that should not be at game night at all.
Not at the Table
While any food can work for dinner before game night or as snacks in the kitchen, there are some foods that are discouraged or not allowed at all at the game table. These foods can be disruptive to the enjoyment of the game or even damaging to the game components themselves.
- Doritos and Cheetos because of the orange powerdery residue they can leave on game components.
- Greasy foods, especially some potato chips, that can mark and stain game components.
- Powdered donuts for a similar reason as Doritos and Cheetos, though more powder and less grease to them.
- Dips, Nacho Sauce, BBQ sauce, and Fondue that can drip on to the table, game board, game components, and papers.
- Juicy fruits like sliced watermelon that can cause a mess of hands and the game.
- Sticky foods like carmel which make hands sticky and thus can impact the game components.
- Pizza. Fits so many bad categories for a game table (greasy, dripping, sticky, etc.)
- ** Drinks aren’t banned at most game tables, but spilled drinks are a nightmare. Follow the lead of your host whether it is closed top drinks, cupholders, coasters, special mugs that are more stable, etc.
Not at Game Night
Foods that are not allowed at all at a game night are chosen by the host for a reason. Respect the host’s rules for food at game night, for they are offering their location for you to enjoy an evening of gaming. Talk to them later if you have questions about the ban on a particular food. Three common foods that are banned include…
- Allergy-causing foods such as peanuts, gluten, nuts, etc. If you know people have those allergies or have an open game night and unsure who might attend, then banning those types of foods keeps everyone safe.
- Diet-busting foods. If you have a friend attending your game night who is on a special diet with restrictions (such as diabetic, low carb, etc.), then you might want to discourage or even prohibit foods that your friend cannot eat. Speak with them about their comfort level. In the very least, offer food alternatives at your game night that they can eat.
- Alcohol. There can be many reasons to allow or not allow alcohol at your game nights. Discuss and make the choice that is right for your hosted event.
Are there foods you have chosen to ban from your game nights? Do you allow them in the kitchen but not at the gaming table, or do you not allow them at all?
In the coming weeks, check back here on Mondays for more delectable recipes from personalities around the game industry.