Students gather in the Ohio Union to participate in mega game on April 13. Credit: Emma Ives | For The Lantern

Students gather in the Ohio Union to participate in a mega game April 13. Credit: Courtesy of Emma Ives

Board games can be a relaxing way to socialize or a fierce test of character. Student organization Board to Death provides both and everything in between.  

The group aspires to provide a friendly and welcoming space for students of all backgrounds to play board games, hang out and meet new people, according to the club’s Facebook page. In addition, the group hosts more intense sessions involving reservations and meticulous planning.

“It’s a good place to meet other people, take a break from classes and de-stress,” Daniel Lemr, a fourth-year in physics and mathematics and the club’s president, said. 

Lemr said members often bring in their own board games, but the club provides a couple dozen of its own. He said members do not need to know how to play the games because club officers are there to teach.

“Any time a new member stops by, we make sure to introduce ourselves,” Lemr said. “We’re always down there during the meetings to teach people how to play the games and answer any questions.”  

Though the club consists of roughly 100 members, Lemr said the average meeting attracts between 20 and 45 members.

For students seeking a more intense gaming experience, the club hosts events called mega games, which are large-scale role-playing games that usually require about 40-50 players, Esha Sharma, a third-year in biochemistry and plant biology sciences and the club’s treasurer, said.

Sharma said players often dress in costume to bring the game to life, and players divide into teams to take on different duties depending on the game at hand.  

“For me, my favorite part is finding the perfect costume, getting there the day of and not knowing what the players are going to do — just that element of surprise,” Sharma said.

One of the mega games the club organizes is “Watch the Skies,” which Lemr said pits the players at odds as world leaders, scientists, media figures and space aliens in a debacle of international relations and alien invasion.

“Most people show up in a suit or lab coat to resemble their role,” Lemr said. “The best part of the role-playing for ‘Watch the Skies’ is the world’s media. We have a live Twitter feed on a projector.”

Lemr said the group hosted two mega games during the fall 2019 semester and plans to put on two more before the end of spring. The club will play “Watch the Stars,” a game the club members developed themselves, in February.

Students can sign up ahead of time on an Eventbrite page, Lemr said. Members who pay the annual $5 dues are given a week’s early access to registration.

Dan Rollins, a second-year in molecular genetics and sustainable plant systems and a club event coordinator, said anyone interested in joining the club should simply attend one of the weekly meetings.

We work very hard to foster an inclusive atmosphere, where anybody can show up and feel welcome,” Rollins said. “It’s a perfect place where people can make new friends, bring old friends, feel comfortable and simply have a good time.”  

Board to Death meets from 6 to 11:30 p.m. every Thursday in the Ohio Union. Lemr said the room varies depending on the week, so students looking to attend should sign up for the club’s email list by contacting