Monthly Game Clubs

One of the things that has helped keep me sane the last couple of years of being mostly isolated because of the pandemic has been through playing games and talking to people online, and the way I’ve been doing that has been through monthly game clubs. I thought I would talk about why you should check one out or maybe even start your own!

What is a monthly game club?

A monthly game club is a group that selects a game to play every month and discusses the game as they play it. Usually these groups have some sort of theme like a console platform or game genre but not always. The clubs can take any form but I’ve mostly seen them on Discord since it’s so easy to start one up there. They also sometimes have a podcast to discuss that month’s game but many do not.

Why should I join one?

It’s a great way to play older games. It feels like on social media people generally stop talking about a game once it’s a couple of months old, especially if it isn’t a gigantic hit. Monthly game clubs allow people to try out games and have a community that they can discuss the game with. I really like this because I usually don’t get around to playing a game until much later, when most people have moved on. I’ve also found it’s just a nice way to meet people around the world and be social now that I’m a bit more isolated because of the pandemic.

Here’s some of the clubs I follow along with. If you’re looking for more, I also made a list of some that have a Twitter account here. This is also missing all the ones that don’t have a Twitter account, like the monthly playthroughs on the forums and the one I run for the monthly games zine Indiepocalypse (message me if you want an invite). But hopefully this will help you get an idea of what they’re like.

DOS Game Club
DOS Game Club is a monthly group focused entirely on playing games on DOS that has been around for over five years. They play games from every genre and cover games both popular and obscure. One thing I really enjoy about this club is that the club discusses games on a forum and IRC channel. It’s fun to use something that reminds me of earlier days on the internet and club hosts have complete control over instead of a company like Discord. You can read about the club and find their forums and IRC here.

The Safe Room
The Safe Room is a newer group focused on horror games. It started earlier this year and has already played some classics like Silent Hill. You can listen to their podcast and join their Discord here

Cartridge Club
Cartridge Club is a group that has been around for over nine years. They play through a wide variety of games, both on consoles and PC, old and new. Their Twitter and Discord are here.

Adventure Game Club
Adventure Game Club is a monthly adventure game playthrough group that I started near the beginning of the pandemic as an excuse to get through my adventure game backlog. The adventure game genre has always been vaguely defined but generally we have a pretty loose definition and include interactive fiction related games like Citizen Sleeper and have had months for things like IFComp. It’s been nice having a place where people can discuss the games as they play them with other people who haven’t played them before and ask for hints on puzzles when needed. We also started a podcast earlier this year as an excuse to talk more after a few years of only talking through text. The Twitter page has links to the Discord and podcast

Start your own club!

If it feels like these clubs don’t quite fit what you’re looking for, consider starting your own! It doesn’t have to be anything big or have some sort of project attached to it like a podcast. It can just be you and a couple of friends talking about a different video game or tabletop rpg every month as you play them. I’ve found that they make games a more social and enjoyable experience for me and hope you consider checking one out.

Indie Game Anthologies

Something I’ve really enjoyed seeing over the last few years has been more game anthologies consisting entirely of games by indie developers. I thought I would write about why I enjoy them so much and list some of my favorites. Consider checking them out or even supporting indie developers by starting your own!

Why are game anthologies cool?

  • They are a fantastic way to discover new games. Every anthology listed here has helped me discover new game developers I wasn’t aware of before.
  • Paid anthologies help game developers make money. Making money as a game developer is a very hard task, especially if you create experimental games that people might hesitate to spend their money on. An anthology helps reduce that risk of their purchase being a dud since if they don’t enjoy one game, there’s plenty of other ones they might be into.
  • They help preserve games! Many of the games in these collections would be forgotten or lost in 10 years without the help of these collections providing another place where these games can exist.

I think I also love game collections and anthologies because they remind me of when I would browse through shareware collections and magazine demo discs in the 90s and try out all sorts of games. If one game wasn’t enjoyable to me then I would just move on to the next one.

Super Rare Games Mixtape

The Super Rare Games Mixtapes are a series of physical game compilations featuring 30 games each and demos on a USB tape cassette with a manual all in a cool little box. The compilations pay the developers to include their games so it was fun seeing the late 90’s freeware game Dink Smallwood in one of the releases. They have a limited print run so some of the early ones are sold out but you can get them here


Indiepocalypse is a monthly anthology of tabletop and video games. Each issue contains ten games as well as a zine. One of my favorite things about Indiepocalypse is how in addition to paying developers to include their games, it also pays royalties to those devs from sales. I also really like how so many of the games are experimental and by developers that don’t have big followings. It even commissions a new game each issue so it’s helping new games get created as well. Indiepocalypse has had a giant influence on me and all my weird little indie game dev projects. I really wish it got more coverage in various outlets. I would strongly encourage you to pick up an issue and check out all the games.

Mangotronics Employment Collection

This is a collection of short games about employment that was organized by the publisher Mangotronics. The collection features nine games, I believe most of them exist elsewhere, but a couple of new games as well. I just really loved how this was a collection that was about a very specific theme. It is available on both and Steam.

Hand Eye Society Mixtape

The Hand Eye Society Mixtape is a collection of games by The Hand Eye Society, a Toronto not-for-profit dedicated to supporting and showcasing video games. The purpose of the mixtapes is to showcase the diversity of indie games. The mixtape pays each developer to include their game in the collection and the bundle itself is available for free, but I highly encourage you to pay for it to help fund future bundles if you can afford to. There are currently two mixtapes available here.

HauntedPS1 Demo Disc

HauntedPS1 is a community that started a few years ago that was focused entirely around creating games inspired by horror games that were on the Playstation 1. Over time some of the developers from the community have started experimenting with different aesthetics or genres but the big projects that come from there are still focused on horror games. One of my favorite things they do is the HauntedPS1 Demo Disc. This is a collection inspired by 90s magazine demo discs containing demos of games by folks in the community. The presentation of the demo discs is fantastic as well. The first one is like the magazine demo discs that inspired it, but later ones have a 3D environment for you to explore. Best of all, they’re free!

If you enjoy these, also check out the Madvent Calendars that the community creates every year. They’re advent calendars with a very small game to play each day.

Dread X

Dread X is a series of horror anthologies published by DreadXP. Each collection features a variety of games by various game developers, many of them being involved with the HauntedPS1 community as well. There are five collections with each containing 7-12 games. Some even feature an impressive world to explore as a way of selecting the game you want.

Utopias: Navigating Without Coordinates

Utopias is described as a videogame network of nine worlds – each one a personal utopia developed by a member of AAA collective. It is available as Pay What You Want.


10mg is a collection of 10 games, each with a playtime of around 10 minutes. The games cover a wide variety of art styles and gameplay with the 10 minute playtime being the only thing they have in common. I really liked all the games and at $10, it’s very affordable too.

Locally Sourced

I suppose I can plug my own collection. The first issue of the Locally Sourced zine is a collection of writing and games by people in the state of Michigan in the United States. I basically just copied what Indiepocalypse was doing and made a very local version of it. I had a fantastic time putting it together though and I’m very slowly working on another. If you would like to help more get made, consider picking up a digital or physical copy.

Cartomancy Anthology

Finally, I’d like to give a shout out to the Cartomancy Anthology. It’s a little different than the rest of the collections I’ve talked about here because it’s all new games exclusive to this collection. The collection has a tarot deck theme, with each game being based on a card in the deck. I really enjoyed the presentation and it was nice to see so many game developers I’m a fan of, such as Lowpolis, have a game in the collection. Cartomancy Anthology is available on both and Steam.

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