In the event editor, Gatheround currently offers two matching options: Round-Robin Matching (default) and A/B Subgroup Matching; and two match size options: 1-on-1 Matching and Small Group Matching.
Round-Robin Matching: This is the default matching option. As long as people join the game within the initial 10-second countdown, they will be matched with someone new or someone they haven't matched with recently. If you keep playing games, eventually everyone will have matched with everyone else – then it starts all over again!
A/B Subgroup Matching: Choosing this option asks participants to self-identify as belonging to one of two pre-defined subgroups when joining the event. Gatheround will then do its best to match participants who join a game with someone of the other subgroup. (This isn't always possible when uneven numbers of people from each subgroup join a game. See below.)
When participants join the event, they choose which subgroup to join using the labels you provided when editing the event, e.g., "Product" and "Community":
A/B Matching with Uneven Subgroups
When equal numbers of participants from each subgroup join a game, each person will be matched with someone from the other subgroup.
However, if uneven numbers from each subgroup (e.g., 18 mentors and 12 mentees) join the game, this is impossible.
In this case, Gatheround matches as many people across subgroups as it can, then matches anyone else remaining within their subgroup. For example, if 18 mentors and 12 mentees join a game, all 12 mentees will match with a mentor and the remaining 6 mentors will match with each other.
Make sure to keep this possibility in mind when choosing games and conversation cards to use for your event. In general, it is best to assume that some people will match within their same subgroup even if you try to keep the groups even. When this happens, participants are notified that more people from their subgroup joined the game and so they have been matched with someone from the same subgroup. They can choose to continue the conversation anyway or click "End Conversation" to return to the event room.
Small Group Matching
If you select small group matching for a game, your participants will be matched for a group of four for the duration of the game. If there aren’t enough people to make perfect four person groups, then we will create smaller or larger groups as needed. For example, if 10 participants join the game, there will be one group of four and two groups of three. If 13 participants join the game, there will be two groups of four and one group of five.
When creating groups, we will optimize to create new connections. Participants will be more likely to match with people they have never matched with before. Groups will change in each subsequent game.
Choosing “Small Group Matching” for your round
When creating your event, click on the “matching” drop-down directly below the game name, image below. Simply select “Small group” from the given options. You can also make this adjustment from the event room itself by clicking on the name of the game and selecting "Small group" in the matching field.
For more information on Small Group Matching, see our Small Group Matching: FAQ's.
Matching When Someone Joins Late
Both Round-Robin vs. A/B Matching, as well as Small Group Matching, are only able to match people who join the game during the initial 10-second countdown. Gatheround has to match everyone who joins the game all at once in order to take into account things like their match histories, subgroup selections, and small group sizes.
People who join a game late—after the initial 10-second countdown—will either interrupt a recently formed match (if they join soon enough after the countdown elapse) or else will wait to be matched with whoever joins next, regardless of previous match history or subgroup selection.
Have more questions? Check out our help center!