I'm traveling out of town for work, and so naturally I checked out a local game shop for some evening entertainment. I'd rather hang there, than in my hotel room.
They had snacks, fun decor, calendar showing weekly events, etc. They had the typical MTG posters, minis paints, accessories, dice, etc. Good board game retail section up front in the windows, as well as in the back. Great selection of up-to-date boardgames to buy. Decent selection of board games to try out for free. They even had a board game 'rental' program - you can pay 10% of any game's MSRP to 'rent' and take it home for 3 days. If you bring it back in good condition, they add it to their 'try out for free' library, or you can buy it from them at an additional discount.
But what struck me most were the people:
- Probably 30-35 gamers scattered across nearly a dozen tables.
- A man and woman well into their 60s playing MtG, sweetly talking about how they needed to finish to get home in time for their curfew.
- A table full of transgender women playing DnD.
- A group of guys thick in the middle of a Gloomhaven night, with probably a 30-year age difference between the oldest and youngest.
- Guys playing Star Wars, learning rules for new games, or browsing through the game libraries.
- Every skin color, race, body type, gender, and age you could imagine were there. And none of it mattered. Everyone felt welcomed and chill.
It was a good place to be. Here's to hoping that such oases of culture can continue to spread.
Keep being awesome, people -- and go light the dark.