It’s an indescribably good feeling as a trivia team captain when you find a trivia spot that your players enjoy – and will come out to play every week! Ever since we stopped playing Wednesday games at the Corner Brewery in the fall of 2015, it’s been…a struggle to find “winnable” places that at least 2-3 other players like to play and are able to come out to play. Corner wasn’t “winnable” anymore because too many of my players moved away – and you need at least 5-6 people playing there every week to have even a shot at winning a tournament spot.
In the spring of 2015, we played a season at Maiz. After that one season, we decided to seek greener pastures because one of the regular teams there was just too difficult to beat. It continued to be an occasional “just for fun” spot until the restaurant stopped offering trivia nights in 2018.
Starting in the summer of 2016, we played a few seasons at the Wurst Bar, and had a pretty good run – and were able to get 3-4 players to our games every week. One of those players has abandoned ship since then (he was very good in the MTL format), and the bar has changed how it does its drink specials. Now, drink specials don’t really kick in until the trivia games are done. So we stopped going there for those reasons in December, 2017 (among other reasons). A couple of my players don’t really care for the MTL format (one is too young to succeed in it, the other just prefers Sporcle Live).
In the old “13 week season” Sporcle Live format, I was able to win trivia spots a couple of times by playing at Original Gravity. But getting players out there was always a struggle, and in the deciding “venue tournament” games I’d always have to bring in help from outside my team. Now it’s gotten even more difficult to hustle players to this trivia spot, so I had to make the difficult (repeat – difficult) decision to say goodbye to this trivia spot. One of my players who enjoyed playing there has moved too far away to go to these games regularly, and another player who enjoys playing here has too busy of a life to commit to weekly games. I can’t win a tournament spot by playing there with just my husband every week, and it’s… not exactly his favorite place to play. So, there’s that!
In the fall of 2018, I decided to take a break from competitive trivia for a bit. During this time, I was starting to see what was working for my team, and what wasn’t working. At the heart of it all, I just wanted a trivia spot I could get players to come out to regularly without having to resort to violence (LOL)! We had a close call with the Tower Inn, which was a new lightly competitive trivia spot that 2-3 us could probably win if we tried. Then they changed their trivia time to 9 p.m., which didn’t work for my players…
A few months later, Monday trivia nights started being offered at Sticks, which is a very “familiar” neighborhood bar to my team. All signs started pointing to “yes!” Sticks also offers trivia Thursday nights, which is a night that I can get my “millennial” player out to on most weeks (we do quite well with him in the mix).
What would Sun Tzu say about this (yes I’m a little obsessed with The Art of War as of late)?
The greatest victory is that which requires no battle.
I EXPECT individual trivia nights to be a battle! I believe my team has always been at its best when we have to “fight” a bit to win prizes/tournament spots. I just don’t want getting players out to games to be too much of a battle. I would like to hope those days are now over! I want to focus my energies on answering questions correctly, not figuring out where/when my team wants to/can wage trivia battle!