It All Started When…
…we realised that every time we went to a trade show, conference or large event, we’d see a dozen industry colleagues that we knew and wanted to catch up with. We’d always be too busy for more than a quick hello, then we’d have to dash off to speak to customers or attend meetings. Then we wouldn’t see them until the next show.
It was particularly mad when a lot of these people were from Nottingham, like us. They lived and worked within a few miles of us, but we never saw each other unless we’d gone somewhere else for work!
The Nottingham Tabletop Industry Collective was born. Over a year later the name’s still a wordy placeholder, but the group that’s grown up around it is really something special.
This is an informal group. There’s no official membership, and the only requirement for attending our events is that you work in or around the tabletop games industry. That’s a deliberately vague description. We just ask attendees to ask themselves this question: what's your involvement with tabletop games? Do you just play them, or are you involved in the process that lets *other people* get enjoyment out of them? If it's the latter, you're almost certainly welcome.
Maybe you design, develop or write for games. Maybe you're an artist, a painter, a designer or a sculptor. Maybe you have your own small miniatures company, maybe you publish pen-and-paper roleplaying games online, maybe you're one small cog in a big wheel (there are a few of those in the city!). Maybe you sell games, or market them, or blog about them, or run large events. If you’re unsure, drop us a line!
We currently run two (mostly) regular events:
The Industry Breakfast
This happens on the first Wednesday of the month, at the Roebuck Inn on St James’s Street, and runs from 8:30am for a few hours.
The Industry Social
This happens once a month on either a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday. The date and venue are different each month, as we know people in the industry tend to have regular evening commitments.
A list of upcoming events can be found pinned to the top of our Twitter page.
The group has an active Facebook page, where members are free to post links, ask advice, offer opportunities and anything else that’s relevant.
The Twitter page is fairly new, and is a great way to keep track of upcoming events and news.
LinkedIn’s groups function is a bit more limited than Facebook, but the Collective has presence there as we’ve found a fair few people who prefer not to use Facebook.
What Our members say
“I moved to Nottingham just under a year ago to pursue a career in the games industry, and the Tabletop Collective has been a massive help to me both socially and professionally. After a handful of meetings, I had already found new freelance work, met new friends, and had countless conversations on game design, the industry at large, and the ins-and-outs of the field. It’s a great way to meet new people in a laid-back environment - I’d recommend it to anyone, regardless of whether you’re just starting out, or you’re an established industry vet. An absolutely fantastic community!”
Sam Sleney, freelance game developer
“The Nottingham Tabletop Industry Collective has been a life saver for me as a one person business. Sometimes it's just some other human contact, some gossip and cake, other times I've made fantastic business connections, and even friends! If it wasn't for the group, I wouldn't have met the excellent people I ended up sharing an office building with. It's a great excuse for a change of scene, and under the veneer of being at work, I can forgive myself for time out of the office.”
Annie Norman, Bad Squiddo Games
“I've absolutely loved being part of the Nottingham Tabletop Collective. It's really made me feel part of a wider community, and put me in touch with people who I would never have met otherwise. I've met new clients and also new friends through it, and felt more informed about the industry than ever before.”
Edwin Moriarty, the Napoleon of Game Design (self-proclaimed)
“The Nottingham Tabletop Industry Collective has been a great aid for me and my company. I arrived at my first session as a fresh faced newcomer to the industry, and I have since met countless friendly, helpful faces that have pushed me forward and provided genuinely useful advice. The events also helped me find future freelancers who now help my busienss, as well as get lots of answers to important questions I would have otherwise had to pay a consultant to ask. Anyone who works in the tabletop industry would be well served to attend one of the events.”
Zachary Cox, SoulMuppet Publishing
“I've always been a big believer in creating community spaces around the things you love. What I've witnessed at the Nottingham Tabletop collective since it began (I'm yet to miss one) is how important this can be to those part of an industry that often has us working in our own isolated little bubbles. There is networking, and job opportunities come up, which is great, but bigger than that those attending have just been able to share their thoughts, feelings and experiences with other like minded people. Personally, as someone taking my first steps into freelance I've found it invaluable to see so many others who are making things happen and leave every meet up feeling inspired to do more.”
Ross Connell, More Games Please