Dream Room #3: Game Rooms

I love hosting game nights.

Part of it is that given the choice to leave my condo or stay at my condo, I’ll choose to stay 9 times out of 10. Another part is that I love to play games, of course.

So I host game night every Wednesday for a few hours. It’s a low-key affair with 10-12 people. I usually make sure there’s candy to munch on and drinks in the fridge, though people often bring stuff to share.

As game night has grown and evolved, I’ve realized how much the space itself truly matters. I think I mentioned this a while ago when I replaced an old shelf with an elegant Kallax. It makes a big difference.

So if I ever had the opportunity to expand beyond a 3-room condo into a space where I could offer a better game night experience, here’s what I have in mind:

I don’t think one game room is sufficient, especially in a group where we play different types of games. I think people like sharing the same space, though, so I imagine several rooms that are partially open to each other:

  1. A room for quiet, thinky games that players already know.
  2. A room for teaching new games (more noise buffering here).
  3. A room for louder, more social games (even more noise buffering here).
  4. A room for campaign games (ongoing games from week to week that you don’t want to have to set up and take down each time you play).

Each room would have fancy game tables, of course.

So it’s essentially one big room subdivided into 4 sections. Each one might even have a different theme. One might have stone walls so you feel like you’re playing in Hogwarts or a castle. Another might have dark-stained wood walls like the Shire in Lord of the Rings. Maybe one could be decorated with images from my games?

If you had an unlimited budget and space in your house, how would you structure your gaming area?

8 thoughts on “Dream Room #3: Game Rooms”

  1. An alternative would be to find a place to host it. Back when I was living in a college town we had a nice coworking space that had 4 small conference rooms and 3 big ones, a large open area with tables as well, as well as a central place for cofee/fridge/ice, but no cooking beyond a microwave. Several people that were members hosted the annual Tabletop day there every year for free, it worked out well with different spaces. I know St Louis has a few different coworking spaces, which if are like ours are empty in the evening, might help to upgrade your game night and stay in your condo. Only downside would be have to take down the campaign games and no fancy game tables.

  2. I want a game room that reminds me of an old world library. It must be quite expansive with rich warm wood and the games located on the shelves using the dewey decimal system.

    • Ryan: That sounds awesome. Do you think you would use it just as a library or for other things (like a reading room, game room, etc)?

  3. As a married guy with 2 kids, i’d take just 1 small room with locks so that store games a table and chairs and could be a game room, anything above that would be icing on the cake. I do understand your point on different environments for different styles of games tho.

  4. Jamey,

    This is actually a timely question. For the first time in many, many years, I actually get to decide (and plan) where I’ll live next. When I joined the Air Force, I left home and moved into a place in England, which served as my residence for the next four years. When I returned, I was married and we rented (because that’s what a Captain could afford in the D.C. area) and later bought a house with my wife at the time. Flash forward a decade, and being divorced forced me into a rental and hwn the folks who were renting decided to sell it, I was under the gun to buy a house, which I love, but now a few years on, I (singular), as my daughter is off to college, do not need an 1,800 sq ft townhouse in the suburbs.

    So, long explanation to say, I would love to have one room set-aside for war games which I regularly develop for other designers, so that I can leave them set-up for long periods and another place in the living room where I can get together with the gaming group for all manner of other games.


    • It’s neat to hear that you’re at a time in your life where you can choose exactly what you want in your house. If you end up with a special game room setup, I look forward to seeing what it looks like!


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