A small LAN party requires either a network switch, with enough ports to accommodate all the players, or if all the computers have Wi-Fi capability, an ad hoc network may be set up.
The size of these networks may vary from small (two people), to very large gatherings of a hundred or more.
Small parties can form spontaneously and take advantage of common household networking equipment, but larger ones typically require more planning, equipment, and preparation.
Providing refreshments is often also a duty of the host, though guests are usually asked to contribute.
In larger parties where participants may not all know each other personally, an entry fee may even be charged.
Such events are often organized quickly with little planning, and some overnight events, with some stretching into days (or even weeks).
Because of the small number of players, games are usually played on small levels and/or against bots.Another tradition of some small groups is to purchase large amounts of fast food for consumption over many days.Many LAN participants will also bring food or drink to consume over the course of the party—though they can be held at any hour, many LAN parties begin late in the evening and run through the next morning, making energy drinks a popular choice.The group can play together in another server as well if they wish as long as they are in the same LAN.Private LAN parties were at their peak in popularity during the late 1990s to early 2000s when broadband internet access was either unavailable or too expensive for most people at the time.Console-LAN attendees need only their console, games, and television to garner the same local gaming experience as their computer-based counterparts.