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In there are lots of questions and answers that mention snacks (One example). Those questions are usually broader than just snacks, and I can't find any question that's only about snacks.

Would a question solely about snacks be on topic? The question I'm thinking about came about because it seems that at some of my sessions, players are more or less awake by the end of the session depending on what snacks are offered.

So I want to ask about what type of snacks people have had experience with over lengthy gaming sessions, and how well they did at keeping players awake & active over the duration.

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A question solely about snacks would be off-topic.

There are lots of things that we can leverage for use in an RPG environment, but which are not about RPGs. History research is one that we've discussed in the past and deemed off-topic, even though it's very useful for roleplayers, because it is not within our mandated area of expertise.

How food effects (and affects) wakefulness is not about RPGs—though you can use the knowledge for advantage when playing RPGs, it equally applies, unchanged, to long meetings, driving long-distance, and a million other human activities where influencing attention level variations could be useful. The common element—how food choice affects attention outcomes—is the domain of nutrition and biopsychology, which is not what our SE is about.

More pragmatically, the point is: we would be non-experts talking out of our nether regions, using unscientific non-research anecdotes to answer questions that require scientific expertise and rigour to answer correctly. Hosting and answering such questions would not reflect well on us as a community of experts, and would only add noise to the Internet when our purpose is to add quality signal instead.

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A question solely about the effects of food on wakefulness and alertness? Sorry, it is a good question but it is off-topic here.

I asked a similar question awhile ago in Arquade.se, and it was closed for the same reason. While snacking may be an integral part of gaming (Of both kinds), it is not in itself about gaming. It's about nutrituion, and as far as I'm aware there is no Nutrition.se (though it could be an interesting subject...)

Now you can ask questions that involve snacks - you can ask about how to determine who should bring snacks to the gaming table, you can ask about how to keep snacks from staining your game mat, you can even ask if there's some game-setting appropriate snacks you could incorporate into your game to make it 'more authentic', because in all of those cases the focus of the question is on the game, rather than on the snack.

Once you put consumption into the mix though, it becomes about the snack itself, and we are not prepared to offer you nutritional advice here.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ As far as I'm aware, nutrition is off topic network wide with certain very specific exceptions, and nutrition about nutrition itself is not one of those exceptions. \$\endgroup\$ – JohnP Jun 21 at 19:27
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The presence of food and drink at the table is as much a part of setting group atmosphere as lighting, music, and props, all of which are acceptable question subjects. Gaming and snacking are historically intertwined — the Dead Alewives' sketch ("Where are the Cheetos?//Can I have a Mountain Dew?") confirms what we already know. Totally on topic.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Excellent citation of Dead Alewives on meta. \$\endgroup\$ – C. Ross Sep 30 '14 at 14:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for this. I tend to agree, but we seem to be in the minority. \$\endgroup\$ – Tridus Oct 2 '14 at 11:46
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Tridus Well, a question about setting group atmosphere using food would be on-topic. A question about which chip dip had more sugar and consequent torpor-causing properties wouldn't. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Oct 3 '14 at 1:08
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    \$\begingroup\$ @SevenSidedDie True, thanks. I think I know what to ask now. :) \$\endgroup\$ – Tridus Oct 3 '14 at 11:49
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Tridus Aha! What happened there, is you put out atmosphere and food as elements of the situation, but then asked about the root problem without assuming the answer would be about the food or atmosphere. :) \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Oct 3 '14 at 15:11
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    \$\begingroup\$ @SevenSidedDie :) The answers here were helpful in framing the question. Not being able to just ask about the food forced me to re frame it, and I think that resulted in a better question. \$\endgroup\$ – Tridus Oct 3 '14 at 15:15
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Tridus I agree! It's like that old saw about RPGs themself: constraint prompts creativity. I'm looking forward to the answers. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Oct 3 '14 at 15:43
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I feel certain snack-centric questions could be on topic, and others not:

For example:

On topic:

  • How can I protect my books from greazy hands? (To which answers could focus on snack choice)
  • Does drinking improve roleplay? (My own experience is ... sometimes)

Off topic:

  • Where can I get caffinated mountain dew? (Until recently why the internet tells me that mountain dew is the stapple of roleplaying sessions, it was not available in caffinated form in my country)
  • What kind of food can I cook that will not need checking on midsession?
  • What foods can I cook that the PCs might also eat?"

Looks like you have reworked your question about snack choice into Setting a table atmosphere that keeps players energetic during long encounters Or at least that is a related question

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  • \$\begingroup\$ On topic #2 would probably get quickly closed as opinion based despite being on topic though. The first is not entirely about snacks either, it's about good book care. ;) \$\endgroup\$ – doppelgreener Oct 8 '14 at 6:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yes, I did rework it into that question. :) \$\endgroup\$ – Tridus Oct 8 '14 at 17:09
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While I suspect this is on topic here, it'd probably get better answers on fitness.se.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Not true: Fitness only deals with "nutrition as it relates to exercise" and not with "nutrition unrelated to exercise, such as food safety, nutritional needs for children, etc.". Unless you can convince them that RPGing is in fact physical exercise, it's off-topic there (even though they probably know a good answer) \$\endgroup\$ – MrLemon Sep 30 '14 at 13:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ @MrLemon RPGing may not be considered exercise, but LARPing might be... \$\endgroup\$ – gatherer818 Oct 7 '14 at 21:27

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