My friends at work and I meet up for lunch to play short card and board games.
Lately, we've had enough people to play a card game every day. (Not like poker or such, packaged card games). This is great! It's usually a huge stress relief for me, and a lot of fun!
But one of the newer guys, who seems to get agitated easily and get pissy quickly, makes jokes about my enforcing the rules of the game (however convoluted they may be) whenever someone asks about rules of the games. Admittedly, I make jokes on occasion as well, so I haven't been letting it bother me.
Until today. Today during a game, one of the players started clearing "out" cards off the table mid game and preparing for the next game†. This is explicitly against the rules of the game, but I refrained from making a scene about it at the time. I figured it really usually doesn't affect the game, though this was the first time he'd done it, so why make a scene? I could just point it out after.
Well, this time, his clearing the "out" cards did affect the game. With one card left each for two players, one player used his turn to call a card that had been played out. (All the cards of that type were out.) He had no way to know this, because the cards were all taken back and were being shuffled. Normally, not a big deal. However, to mix up the game, we had houseruled a little. We had removed two cards from the deck before we started.
Luckily, the player that had picked up and shuffled the cards knew for sure what the burn cards were, and everything was fine. But, the first player lost the game because he had no way of knowing the card he was calling was out, not counting the burn cards. The second player stopped to ask how many of that card had gone out already, so he was able to win in that move.
In the moments of this incident happening, I pointed out that this was against the rules and it impacted the game. I'm a stickler for rules for the most part, though I'm all for house rules if everyone has a say in whether we play them or not. (We put it to a vote, usually).
When I was pointing out this being against the rules, a lot of the group gave me these looks like it really didn't matter. The gentleman that makes jokes probably made another joke, but I was so bothered by the looks that I excused myself to go grab my lunch.
My immediate instinct was two fold:
Apologize on Slack because I think part of the looks was my tone. I may have sounded too aggressive or hostile, though that was not my intent. I don't know for sure that this was the case, but I will still apologize for it because these are my friends.
Explain that if the group wants me to not care about the rules so much, I can do that. That's fine! I've got no problem with it... But if we go this route, I no longer feel comfortable offering up my own games to play.
First thought, naturally, no problem. I'll be doing that regardless. The second thought, however... It feels like "taking my ball and going home." The others don't seem to care as much about how closely we follow the rules. Again, I'm fine with this! As long as we all agree to how closely we're following them, or as long as I don't know them that well. I know the rules for all of my games pretty damn well, mainly so I can teach them to the group when we play.
I want to express to my friends that I'm cool with being more lax on the rules, but I'm not comfortable with being more lax with the rules on my own games (Mainly because I know them so well I'm not sure I could be more lax...) though I'm more than open to compromises that are suggested. I don't, however, want to come across as petty or "my way or the highway" when/if I bring this point up.
How can I express this without sounding petty?
We are all IT professionals in a State job, but in different departments. We're all in the same building. I am the only female of our group, most days. I'm also one of the better players.
The easily agitated player is one of the older men. The age ranges are from (guessing because I haven't asked any of the older guys) probably 40/50ish to 22. I'm on the lower end of that, with only two of the guys younger than me.
† For clarity, the game was Coup. In it, you get two of five types of card, there's a set number of each type in the deck. You can claim to be any card in the deck, but if another player calls you on a lie, you lose a card. If they call you and you're lying, they lose a card. Lost cards are flipped face up and remain so on the table. We also had a house rule to remove two cards from the deck before starting.