Huh? Simi? Who is #laiplayleow? Read on more about one of the fastest growing new tabletop community in Singapore, who welcome everyone with open arms to join them to play more board games for a unique experience!
Q: Please give the readers a short introduction about yourself and your organization. What is your role? What is your organization about? What is your “origin” story?
Hey there, I'm Benjamin Leow, the brains behind #laiplayleow, a bustling tabletop community right here in Singapore. Our gig is all about bringing folks together through the magic of tabletop gaming. How did it all start, you ask? Well, we kicked things off back in 2019 when we noticed that some boardgaming events weren't exactly rolling out the welcome mat for those who were new to the scene. So, we decided to change that up and create a more open and friendly space for everyone. Moreover, I was really keen on infusing a unique Singaporean vibe into the name, and that's how the concept of #laiplayleow came to life. Roughly translated, it means "Come Play Now" – a friendly invitation that rightfully captures the essence of our mission.
Q: What is the mission, vision or guiding principles of your organization? What values does your company embody? What do you hope to achieve?
Our vision can be succinctly put as "Bridging friendships, we can!"
This stems from our firm belief that tabletop gaming, as an offline pursuit, possesses a unique ability to foster unexpected and meaningful connections among individuals. Beyond the primary objective of introducing and enriching people's engagement in tabletop gaming, we are equally committed to highlighting the diverse advantages that this activity can offer.
One such benefit lies in the cultivation of cognitive skills like problem-solving, creative thinking, and lateral reasoning. Beyond that, tabletop gaming provides a soothing escape from life's anxieties, fostering relaxation and a profound sense of enjoyment. In essence, our mission is to create connections, stimulate minds, and offer an encouraging haven through the captivating world of tabletop gaming.
Q: What are some of the activities, events and fun things that Laiplayleow organizes? What are some of the challenges you and your team faced while organizing these events? Any fun tidbits to share?
#laiplayleow orchestrates weekly events, ranging from themed euro-gaming to dynamic party games, word challenges, card strategies, and occasional Jackbox Party Pack sessions, fostering diverse offline interactions within our community.
Beyond our reputation as a party game group, we take pride in dispelling misconceptions by consistently delivering a wide spectrum of gaming genres. Moreover, our dedication extends to championing local board games, fostering a unique bond between Singaporean creations and our community. Throughout our journey, we've navigated challenges in crafting a fresh and engaging event lineup while catering to diverse preferences and logistical considerations. Yet, the rewarding connections formed, and the vibrant growth of the local board gaming scene continue to fuel our passion.
A valuable tip we've learned is that open communication and adaptable planning are key to addressing challenges and ensuring memorable experiences for our community.
Q: #laiplayleow is hosted on Telegram. Why did you choose Telegram as the platform and do you have plans to expand to other platforms.
Initially, we opted for Telegram as the hosting platform for #laiplayleow due to its convenient feature of sharing Telegram handles instead of mobile numbers, respecting the privacy concerns of our players. Over time, our Telegram Channel has grown to a sizeable community of around 300 members. While Telegram remains our foundation, we're actively expanding our presence on Instagram to increase visibility. We've also diversified our reach by leveraging platforms like MeetUp, EventBrite, and Peatix to promote our various initiatives. Additionally, the organic support from our tabletop enthusiasts, who share the same passion and frequently extend a "jio" (invitation) to their friends, has been instrumental in our growth. As we continue to evolve, we're open to exploring new avenues to enhance engagement and accessibility for our community.
Q: As a community leader, you must have contact with many to be interested gamers. What are some of the reasons that you feel, attracted them into the tabletop gaming hobby. What are some of the games they usually play and are interested in.
My interactions with enthusiastic gamers have provided insights into their motivations for embracing tabletop gaming. It appears that, at its core, a blend of leisure time availability and a genuine curiosity about the world of tabletop gaming act as the initial “kaypohness”. In response, we make it a priority to reciprocate their interest by delivering an exceptional gaming encounter. Two primary factors seem to sustain their engagement: firstly, the holistic gaming experience that encompasses the game genres, the camaraderie around the table, and the carefully chosen venues for our gatherings; secondly, our authentic aspiration to cultivate the tabletop community in Singapore and elevate local games beyond our Little Red Dot.
Regarding their preferred games, the repertoire often includes well-regarded titles such as "Catan," "Azul," "Wingspan," "Avalon," "Codenames," and "Letter Jam." Intriguingly, our local favorites, like "Alpha Beasts Attack," "ZombieLife Insurance," and "Off Track," also feature prominently in their interests. This amalgamation of engaging games, coupled with a welcoming environment and our dedication to community growth, collectively contributes to a vibrant and enduring passion for tabletop gaming among these enthusiasts.
Q: You have been one of the prominent leader in promoting the tabletop gaming hobby among Singaporeans. What do you feel can be done better by publishers, designers, retailers and the tabletop media to promote the hobby to Singaporeans?
To enhance the promotion of tabletop gaming within Singapore, key stakeholders including publishers, designers, retailers, and tabletop media can play pivotal roles. Publishers can tailor their marketing efforts to highlight how games align with local preferences, designers can craft games that are culturally relevant and accessible to newcomers, retailers can provide convenient avenues for purchasing and trying out games, and tabletop media can curate engaging content that showcases the positive impact of gaming on individuals and the community. Through these concerted actions, we can collectively cultivate a thriving tabletop gaming scene in Singapore that resonates with a broader audience. Let's collaborate to bring the joy of tabletop gaming to more Singaporeans and build a stronger community together!
Q: What are some of your favourite tabletop games and what kinds of games you hope to see from Singaporean designers?
I've always had a blast with games like Scrabble and Congkak – their strategic twists and interactive vibes really do it for me. But then, I stumbled upon Azul and it was like a pleasant fusion of the two! The tile strategy that I cherish in Scrabble seems to echo in Azul, while the counting tactics from Congkak resonate in Azul's pattern-making charm. It's funny how these seemingly different games share similar thrills. Looking ahead, I'm eagerly waiting to see Singaporean game designers weave their cultural touch into tabletop gems. Imagine the blend of tradition and innovation, much like the wonderful harmony I've discovered in these games – that's something I'm really excited about!
Q: What are the future plans for yourself and the team?
As we gear up for our fourth anniversary since kicking off in 2019, our fantastic #laiplayleow Core Team, alongside my Co-Founder Jonathan and myself, have truly been the driving force. Our roadmap ahead is all about staying deeply rooted in Singapore's tabletop gaming scene while fostering exciting collaborations with brands. We're pumped to keep spreading the tabletop gaming love to even more folks through thrilling partnerships soon!
Q: How do we find out more about #laiplayleow? How do interested readers join the community?
Curious to dive deeper into the world of #laiplayleow? Swing by our Instagram Page @laiplayleow or hop onto our website at www.laiplayleow.weebly.com for a dose of tabletop gaming excitement! And hey, if you're up for a chat and want the inside scoop on all things #laiplayleow, drop me a line on my Instagram Page @thisbenleow.