On the Road to Nerdtacular, there were a lot of interesting conversations. One topic that lasted a long time was discussion of local gaming stores – those places where you can buy table top games of all kinds, sit around and play an RPG with friends, or flip the Magic: The Gathering Cards until the wee hours of the morning. The realization that the closest stand alone gaming store (a store that doesn’t sell comic books or video games) was 150 miles away from the Major Spoilers HQ brought the mood way down, and it made us wonder how many others were in the same situation.


Is there a dedicated game store (not video games) within 50 miles of your home?

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Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment. You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...

25 Comments

  1. Life in my city is pretty good for a nerd. We have two very good dedicated gaming stores and the comic book stores are also very gaming-friendly.
    We also had a gaming cafe open a month ago and it has a very good food menu to match its plethora of games.

  2. There is one within that distance but it isn’t very good. And there is no good comic store in that range. The best comic book store and game store is Comic Quest in Evansville and its about 90 miles away.

  3. There are a few gaming stores within probably 15 miles. Given my nearest shopping center is Mall of America, so I might be an outlier here.

  4. I voted no, but should have voted yes because I did forget about a store. We do have several “hobby shops” (comics and games) but only one shop dedicated completely to games. However I let it fall of my radar due to the customer service and poor attitudes from the owner and employees. I voted no, but should have voted yes because I did forget about a store. We do have several “hobby shops” (comics and games) but only one shop dedicated completely to games. However I let it fall of my radar due to the customer service and poor attitudes from the owner and employees.

  5. Not anymore. There used to be two in my town, but they both closed within six months of each other. They both had slightly different focuses (one was mostly tabletop minis, RPGs and similar games, the other was mostly trading card games), but they each had an assortment of all kinds of games and would often work together hosting tournaments for Magic, Mage Knight, YuGiOh and HeroClix among other things.

    Now the closest place is about 100+ miles from here, and the closest GOOD place is about twice that.

    It is a shame because they were a lot of fun to hang out at and play any manner of games with various other people. And most of the older gamers would look out for the younger kids trading Pokemon and YuGiOh cards to make sure they weren’t getting ripped off by the occasional weasel taking advantage of the kids.

  6. I am north of Atlanta. There are several excellent gaming shops in addition to gaming / comic shops. Dr. No’s and Gigabites come to mind. If

    • I forgot about Gigabytes but Dr. No’s is half games and half comics so it doesn’t qualify. Even Raven’s Nest has a few comics on the rack.

  7. None, thou I am a regular at 2 comic book shops and a hobby store.

    If it didn’t take 1 hour trips I would be bankrupt thou, so I’m fine with it :)

  8. Alas, no. Not a “dedicated” gaming store. You can pick up the stuff in the comic stores, and there is at least one WarHammer store in town (Dublin) too, but not a D&D store. I don’t think so, anyway.

  9. slimeknight on

    I’m not sure. I do have a store that sells comics as well as gaming supplies and another that sells sports memorabilia.

  10. Though I live in New Jersey, New York City falls within my 50 mile radius. If someone can’t find something in that described area, they just aren’t looking hard enough.

  11. I can name at least 4 or 5 off the top of my head. A couple have nice service and a expansive selection. Two supplement their game income by having a gaming bar associated with the store to play the games at.

  12. I voted “Yes,” but it’s an interesting “Yes.”

    Our local “Game Shop” in Summerville, SC is a used book store in the tradition of those found elsewhere (tons of used paperbacks and hardcovers. They take trades. It smells like wonderful, wonderful old, yellowing paper). However, the owners love games. So they started carrying games years ago and started hosting a monthly “game night” where you could come play games, meet other people who play games, and learn to play new games.

    Over the years, every bit of shelf space that isn’t covered in used books is stacked with board games, card games, euro-games, role-playing games, etc, etc, etc and game night on the first weekend of the month starts at 6PM, runs until after midnight, and they broke an attendance record this month.

    Is it a “dedicated game shop” by the definition that they are a shop that sells only games or at least the predominant sales are and have been only games? No.

    Is it a “dedicated game shop” by the definition that they are passionate gamers in the retail environment who have a crap-ton of games for sale, can get you other games that they don’t have that you want, and are willing to take the time and crack open a box to teach you the game before you walk out the door with the game in your hands and your money in their cash register? Yes.

  13. We basically have two game shops within driving distance of my house, both in the same town, about 30-40 miles away. One deals mainly in M:TG and other card games (as it started out as a sports cards & collectibles shop) but holds HeroClix and WH/40K events as well. The other is more of a store/club from what I understand and holds a lot of WH/40K events. I haven’t been able to make it to the second yet to check it out (its opening flew under my radar), but it sounds like it might have more stock and be more board-game and tabletop oriented.

  14. Like probably a lot of people on here, I don’t have a dedicated game store near me. I am lucky enough to have two comic/game stores within easy driving distance, one in the next city over, about 15 minutes away, and the other a bit farther, about an hour’s drive or so. And just my luck, the bigger, nicer one is the one that’s farther. But they’re both nice. The closer one has about a 50/50 split between comics and games, I’d say, with maybe a big more floor space used for shelves with games. But still a good comic selection, and a couple of shelves for manga. The one that’s farther is pretty big. Not only do they have comics, manga, board/card games, and tabletop rpgs, but they have a lot of related merch, like posters, movies and some anime dvds, and a bunch of just geek culture related stuff. They even have a display case for what I believe is makeup used for cosplay, and a display case with high heels that I’m not quite sure are supposed to be worn. Very shiny and pretty. Yeah. There’s also a Wonko’s Toys and Games, but that’s technically more than 50 miles away I believe. In the same city as the bigger comic/game store, just further downtown. Has some board games and stuff, but most of it is geeky toys. Like, even some older toys and figures.

  15. Arcturus Mengsk on

    Yep, there are quite a few locally. My personal favorite has entire walls dedicated to lines of miniatures (Reaper, Games Workshop, etc.), paints, RPG’s, and on and on. They have a separate wing–not just a small room, but about the size of a high school cafeteria–for gaming sessions, tournaments, etc. Very glad to have found it.

  16. The only one I was able to find in DC was Labyrinth Games & Puzzles, but I’ve never been there. What I’ve heard is the rpg selection is small (mostly board games, puzzles and card games), but the owner is friendly to rpg gamers.

  17. I’ve got at least three that are well established, and probably at least two others. I count my self fortunate. We also have a totally awesome local comics store.

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