This past week, my buddy Matt and I were discussing the composition of our gaming group, and I made an offhanded comment about he and another player being a volatile compound. This started an entire discussion how our entire group could be discussed in "chemistry" terms (or at least chemistry-sounding):
Players A & B are definitely volatile compounds! There's a lot of chances for fireworks when these two sit down at a gaming table. They're know for getting in there and setting off a lot of in-game action. They're the ones who best help keep the game lively, and often take it places I never dreamt it would go. Being as volatile as they
Players C &D are inert or noble gases. This sounds much worse than it is! Although they don't mix it up as much as A & B do, they're a calming presence, one that sometimes keeps things sensibly grounded and under control. And though there are times when you'd like to see a little more reaction, you know that's just not not their composition. Having players A-D together has created a very nice balance in our group.
Player E is simply a very stable compound. Player E knows what he wants from the game, knows what expectations are, and dutifully chugs along each week. Perhaps not as dynamic as A & B, neither is he as reticent as C & D. Player E is an under-appreciated workhorse.
Player F doesn't play in our group. Player F is radioactive--unstable and discomfiting to others. He can poison a gaming session, and his behavior often causes strong bonds to decay. He hasn't been welcome back.
Well, that's our group. Anyone sound familiar?