All you need to join a Space and interact with others is a web browser, mic, and camera!
Note: Gather works best on a desktop using Chrome or Firefox!
Tip: You can also download and share this Guest Guide to Gather.
Why yes, we do have shortcuts!
- (g) - Enter ghost mode and walk through other participants.
- (x) - Interact with an object.
- (z) - Make your avatar dance.
- (f) - Shoot confetti in the air. (Note: This mode is in testing and is only available to a limited number of users.)
- (Esc) - Close interaction (e.g., close minimap, close object interaction)
- (Ctrl/⌘ + P) - Open Settings.
- (Ctrl/⌘ + Shift + A) - Turn personal mic on/off.
- (Ctrl/⌘ + Shift + V) - Turn personal video on/off.
- (Ctrl/⌘ + U) - Turn on/off quiet mode (events Spaces) or do not disturb mode (remote work Spaces).
- (Ctrl/⌘ + Shift + D) - Turn on/off debug mode.
- (Windows key/Control + N) - Turn on network diagnostics.
- Alt/Option + mouse drag - Look around the Space.
While you are in a Space, you can press the keys 1-6 to emote! (You can also customize Emotes 1-5.)
- (1) - Wave
- (2) - Heart
- (3) - Party popper
- (4) - Thumbs up
- (5) - Question mark
- (6) - Raised hand
- (0) - Clear emote
We have a plethora of FAQs and articles that will walk you through detailed troubleshooting steps if you need help connecting to or using Gather. The following is a checklist of steps to try:
- Refresh your browser.
- Switch to Chrome if you are not using it already.
- Close any other applications or browser tabs.
- Disable any unnecessary browser extensions (or use Incognito/Private mode in your browser).
- Disable VPN/firewall or ask your IT to whitelist Gather.
- Turn on Do Not Disturb Mode (Ctrl/⌘+U) to limit your a/v connections.
- Test User Settings (Ctrl/⌘+P):
- Reduce Limit Frame Rate to fewer fps. (Graphics)
- Turn on SmartZoom or use a large zoom for Manual Canvas Zoom. (Appearance)
- Turn on Reduce Motion. (Appearance)
- Turn on Auto Idle Mute. (Audio / Video)
- Turn off HD Video Quality. (Audio / Video)
- Turn off Hardware Acceleration (Graphics)
- Check browser settings and permissions to allow microphone and camera.
- Close any other applications that use your mic or camera.
- Check system settings and permissions (Macs) to allow screen recording, microphone, and camera.
- Disconnect from external monitors.
- Turn on Original Audio (Settings > User > Audio & Video) to turn off Gather’s audio processing, which includes echo reduction, automatic gain control, and noise filtering.
- Review A/V Troubleshooting FAQs
Black or White Screen Issues
- Respawn into the Space.
- Hard refresh your browser (hold Shift key and press refresh button on browser).
- Check the Mapmaker to make sure the background has not been deleted or resized. (If the background is white in Mapmaker, your original background has likely been deleted.)
- Check if you are banned.
- Clear your browser cache.
- If you are embedding objects:
- White screen = the website does not allow embedding
- Black screen = the URL needs to be https
- See All I see is a black screen—what do I do? for screenshots of black screen issues.
Still having issues?
There are several reasons why you may see a black screen or black background. Here are some quick troubleshooting tricks you can try to resolve your issue.
Reset Your Location
Occasionally there may be an issue with your current position due to map edits or other situations. The quickest way to resolve this is to try and respawn to a default spawn location in the Space. Select your name (the personal menu) in the toolbar, then select Respawn.
Try a Hard Refresh
A hard refresh in your browser is different from a regular refresh in that it also clears the webpage's cache. Doing this will not log you out of Gather or forget your position in the space, and cached files for other sites will not be affected.
First, go to the Gather space that's having the problem. Then use the following key combination to refresh the page:
- Chrome or Firefox for Windows: Press Ctrl+F5. If that doesn’t work, try Shift+F5 or Ctrl+Shift+R.
- Chrome or Firefox for Mac: Press Shift+Command+R.
- Other Browsers: Try pressing the browser's refresh button while holding down shift, or manually clear the website cache in the browser's settings.
Add a Background
If you see a black background, but you can still see objects, the background may have been accidentally deleted (or not saved, if you were using the Walls and Floors Painter tool in the Mapmaker). If you own the Space and you have a copy of the background, you can try uploading it again.
Open the Mapmaker. Click the hamburger menu in the top left corner. Click Background & Foreground, then Upload a Background. If you used the Walls and Floors Painter tool (drew your own background), you will need to recreate the background. When you are finished drawing or uploading your background, click Done in the Top Nav Menu of the Mapmaker, and then click Save before reloading the Space.
Note: Check out our article on adding and managing Backgrounds and Foregrounds for more details.
Check If You Are Banned
If your entire screen is black and you do not see any objects, there is a high possibility that you were banned from the Space. Bans are done by IP address. This means if you tested the ban function on yourself or a member of your household, you may have banned yourself from your Space. For more information and available options moving forward, please see our page on Block, Kick, & Ban.
Clear Your Cache
Occasionally there may be issues with stored cookies or other information in your browser's cache. Try clearing your browser's cache to help resolve these issues.
Right now Gather doesn't support virtual backgrounds natively, but you can use any number of virtual webcam software options to get that functionality, and then use those virtual webcams inside of Gather.
Here's a tutorial on how to do that with OBS, which is a free and open source application that we know works well with Gather on both Mac and PC. Unfortunately, we can't provide support on third party software, but there are lots of great resources out there to help you!
If you haven't done so already, please try the following steps:
- Go to https://app.gather.town/app and select Sign In.
- Enter your email address and select Sign in with email. Keep your browser window open. You will receive a 6-digit code at the email you signed in with.
- Enter the 6-digit code from the most recent email into the browser.
- If the email does not arrive immediately, wait at least 5 minutes before requesting another one.
- The 6-digit code is valid for 10 minutes.
- Each time you request a new code, the previous code is invalidated.
- If you are logging into Gather with your work email, you may want to check your spam folder or ask your IT help desk if firstname.lastname@example.org is blocked.