I am both a DM and player for our group in two separate campaigns. Some of us are brand new and some are semi-moderately experienced.
I have a noticed a pattern in both games where some players, (about 2 or 3 out of 5), really enjoy the socialization of talking up npc’s and persuading and getting the most of whatever dialogue they can get going. The others seem bored during that portion of role play. I think there are two factors; 1 – their character is someone with terrible social skills and they may feel like trying to engage is sub-optimal or not a good idea, 2 – they want to get to aspects of the game they find more interesting for them.
So when I am GM I want to try to balance between the two and when I am a player (playing a barbarian) I try to stay engaged and input my low intelligence/high ego and let people see that I don’t get punished for opening my mouth.
So I am trying to come up with a balance between the two, which leads to my question: What are common strategies GMs use to balance socialization time for these players with different priorities?
I will mention that the campaign I am GM’ing for is in its early stages, so I am currently facing the setup of the main campaign hub for early-mid game and looking at all these different threads and NPCs the characters have to meet, and knowing that their tendency is to do the online MMO thing of optimizing quest gathering by sweeping through town and collecting all the quests before deciding which are worth pursuing and whether they can complete several at once… which would be one heck of a giant information dump and socialization session.