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Subject: If you were building a clubhouse... rss

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Scott Nicholson
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So, I'm looking at my property and eyeing a large blank part of it as a place to add a clubhouse. This would be a gaming and social space.

If you were building a clubhouse from scratch for gaming, what would you do?

Current plans include:
- Shelving around the walls either in long walk-in closets or with tall cabinet/sliding doors, so the space could not look like a game-covered basement when needed.
- Gas fireplace with TV above, with built-in surround speakers.
- Bathroom, wetbar, nearby kitchen
- Hardwood floors with radiant heating (hooray Syracuse winters)
- Small extra bedroom / video studio with long closet also opening into clubhouse for storing folding tables and hooks mouted in the studs for hanging folding chairs
- Paving a small area in front for extra parking
- Long entry hall with coathooks and a bench with shoe space underneath
- Sunroom in the back provding a view to our backyard (and connecting into the basement and the rest of the house).

What would you add in? What clever things did you do with your gaming space that you appreciate?

I would like to try an find chairs that would be comfortable for games, but would also be appropriate for watching a movie. Couches and the like are comfortable, but not good for games. I'd like to find some type of chair that would work for both sitting up and playing games and still appropriate for lounging. Any suggestions?



 
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Jim Cote
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Figure out a way to have lots of soft incandescent lighting. Many bulbs above a translucent screen?

Off-table support for drinks/snacks. I put trays at each corner of the table.

Computer with online access for rule checks and session reporting. Maybe a printer.

Digital/video camera for live gaming shots/movies.

I suppose if people bring lots of games, you need a way to remember whose is whose. Get some post-it-notes or other semi-sticky paper that leaves no residue.

Misc supplies to keep on hand: dice, cloth bags, pens, pencils, pads of paper, napkins, etc.
 
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Paul DeStefano
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Hot tub.

For after the games.
 
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Quote:
- Shelving around the walls either in long walk-in closets or with tall cabinet/sliding doors, so the space could not look like a game-covered basement when needed.


Depending on how much sunlight comes in cause you don't want t sunlight fading your games I would have them open and public shelving. People games, ands makes it easier for them to select games to play.

Quote:
- Gas fireplace with TV above, with built-in surround speakers.


In Austin that would be A/C unit.


Spoiler (click to reveal)
- Hardwood floors with radiant heating (hooray Syracuse winters)


Definite no carpet, too many party spills.

What I would add in, only cause I like toys. Good stereo system, i like ambient music while gaming, or i'll make it. Even better would be a Jukebox, liven up the place.

I would also add Pinball machine, Dart board, and my foosball table(Which converts to massive gaming table).

Bar is nice, make sure you have a refrigerator most importantly. I would also add a wine cooler and a kegerator for good measure. (I would have added a margarita machine, but that may be overboard).

I would add one wall as a white magnetic dry erase board(ig) for scoring, tournament stuff, etc.

Big screen TV! For theme nights like HBO Rome watching, football games. Add a PS3 or Xbox360, to either keep the younglings occupied or to kill time between games.

And of course Tables enough for at least one 5-6 player game, and four 4 player games. 20 people is a good number to expect.

Game themed art work. Do like that guy did with the big Risk collection, or get some nice geek theme posters, or art..

Billiard style lighting, make sure your games are well lit.

A nice coved deck with BBQ and seating, for those weekend cookouts.
 
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Jim Cote
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Are you planning some kind of Scott-Con?
 
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dave boulton
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oo oo oo!

a roundy and roundy staircase and a fireman's pole! (with optional sound track and costume administration half way down)

just as an aside syracuse is in sicily not greece (watched your antike video last night and it has swung me on buying it, thanks scott)

Walker Red Eye
 
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John Carlton
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A smallish round table for two-player games and Crokinole.
 
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Rick Keuler
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Note to self:
1. Move to Syracuse
2. Make friends with Scott
 
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Luke Morris
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snicholson wrote:
Any suggestions?





Invite me.
 
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Jim Carvin
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Ah, the diabolical Dice … a word of caution; don't throw them when you're alone. The fiends lack loyalty, and their notion of nourishment is quite disturbing.
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- A kitchenette is a good idea. Sink, microwave, and either a full sized or min frig.

- Gaming related decor, specifically full sized artwork/pictures of games to set the tone of the room. Maybe some of those meeple people Carcassone pillows if you do get any chairs/couch. Also some games as artwork, the World verison of Cathedral comes to mind. http://www.boardgamegeek.com/image/86717

- I personally like a TV with cable/satellite in the room so as not to miss all the sporting events that happen on Saturday and Sunday when I do the majority of my gaming.

- Land line for emergencies and pizza deliveries.

- An alarm!


 
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Jim Carvin
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Ah, the diabolical Dice … a word of caution; don't throw them when you're alone. The fiends lack loyalty, and their notion of nourishment is quite disturbing.
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Ok...if you want to go really crazy here's a few more suggestions. (obviously I've considered what I would do with the money if I ever won the lottery!)

- A separate room with multiple diomaras for any minature games you'd like to play. I'd at least have a fully detailed Hoth terrain for Star Wars minis, a big and intricate Heroscape setup, a cityscape terrain for Heroclix, and who knows what else.

- A half dozen PC's, networked for multiplayer gaming such as Age of Empires.

- Large screen TV with PS2 & X-Box, multiple controlers, and lots of good multiplayer games.

- Indoor basketball & racquetball courts (we're going crazy, remember?)
 
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Kevin Peters Unrau
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Hi Scott:

I like your list of ideas, I'll comment on three of them.

First, congratulations on admitting you have winter. As someone who lives in snow and/or slush for several months a year, I can't believe how many buildings I live/work in are set up for Southern California winters--there is never enough space to deal with coats, boots, scarves, mits, toques, etc. Making room for coats and boots and a place to sit to put it all back on when you leave is definitely nice. The in-floor heating is a grand way to make sure people won't mind being in their socks in the middle of winter!

Second, the gaming table is probably the one thing you don't want to mess up. A bad table is annoying and affects every game played. My dad designed a great dinner table set-up for when my folks entertain larger groups that I think would make a great gaming table. They have a nice oval dinner table with inserts that is great for 4-6 adults and the perfect size for most games. However, he built an overlay for when they have larger groups over. It basically sits on the base table and latches on to it so that it won't tip over. Now you have a table for 8-10 dinner guest or any games that require a LOT of space. As you noted, comfortable chairs round this out nicely.

Last, and perhaps most difficult to control is lighting. In almost every place I game lighting is an issue. Usually at least one person at the table is fighting board glare and my colour blind friend really struggles to differentiate pieces in many types of artificial light. If you can put in windows and/or skylights to allow natural light in while having blinds that will eliminate glare as needed that would be a great start. For night-time gaming I would seriously recommend full-spectrum flourescent lighting mounted in light boxes which direct the light UPWARDS towards a white-painted ceiling. These light boxes can be mounted all along the walls or hung from the ceiling, I've seen both work. I suspect you'd probably like the wall-mounted version. You then work only with reflected light and eliminate almost all glare issues. The full-spectrum light is a boon to colour blind folks who can sometimes distinguish colours more easily in sunlight. The key is to make sure that only the ceiling is directly exposed to the light which means that a high or vaulted ceiling is pretty much a must for this to work. The light boxes themselves are pained white inside with the bare bulbs mounted inside. The nice thing is that it tends to be an inexpensive way to build fixtures. Also, depending on how you wire it, you could set it up so that only 2-4 shorter bulbs are on each switch allowing you to adjust for how much light you want. You may also look at additional kinds of lighting for things like movies but my comments are meant more for game play.

Hope you find this helpful. I must say, with a little kitchenette and a bedroom in there, it sounds like you're building my dream home, not a clubhouse!

One last thought, also consider what might be good for outdoor gaming. A shaded/semi-shaded gazebo with some lights strung underneath might be nice for summer gaming. Of course, if you really do all this I might be moving in.
 
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Travis Cook
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I like the ideas you've come up with already. Especially the video studio is pretty cool.

I'd look for an old Coke vending machine. Something with those old fashion glass bottles would be awesome. You can buy one or rent one from a Coke distributor (or you use to be able to anyway). It's great decor, plus you don't have to pay for everyone else's drinks! I think a small kitchenette is a must. If nothing else a fridge and a counter top place for a microwave.

Either a bar area or some kind of built-in counter for others to put their games they bring. Add cupboards below for even more storage. Perhaps a bank of drawers to hold misc. game bits, card games, or small games that would normally get lost on a game shelf.

I just recently bought a house. One of the coolest features that really sold me on the house is a secret passage! There's a bookcase that swings out to reveal a large storage area. Naturally I claimed it as my game closet (or the Game Grotto, as I like to refer to it). So if you can swing it, a secret passage/hidden storage of some kind. That would give it some extra cool points.

Can you post some pictures on your blog when you get it done. I'd love to see the final results!
 
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Scott Nicholson
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Wow, there are some fantastic ideas here! I was right in guessing that I'm not the only one that has fantasized about it.

We've been talking about moving for a while now, but then I had this idea of adding on a sunroom and clubhouse, and that would free up space in other parts of the house to allow my partner to move things around to make a more formal living room and second kitchen, as well as sleeping space that can be accessed without going up stairs.

I'm imagining that the cost to build this will probably be about the same as it would take to move and upgrade to a house with these features, and adding these things will fix about 90% of the problems we have with our current house. Since we're a small house in a nicer neighbood (and just happened to get a 3/4 acre lot), we can upgrade without as many concerns.

Plus, I'm going through my tenure process this year (so nothing will be done until after I get tenure), so one I have tenure in hand, I know I've got a job here as long as I want it.

(oh, and to the hot tub suggestion; I'm actually thinking about that as something in the sun room area, away from the games...)

p.s. I love to game with travelers from out-of-town, and always look to play with new people when I travel, so having the bedroom would really let me host traveling gamers...

p.p.s. Hmm. a BGG B&B? Possibilities...

 
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Michelle Zentis
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Quote:
Hmm. a BGG B&B? Possibilities...


Ooh, I'd sign up!* You could even offer people a discount on room and board if they bring a game for you to keep.

* In summer only. I saw more than my lifetime quota of snow before age 18.
 
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John R
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Put in a loft, it is really great to get that aerial view on a massive game.
 
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James
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snicholson wrote:


What would you add in? What clever things did you do with your gaming space that you appreciate?



Two words...


MAME Machine!


This is the ultimate "filler" for up to four people that will bring more fun to your gameroom than anything else you could add (IMHHO). Go to www.arcadecontrols.com for more information/inspiration
 
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Scott Nicholson
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ghost604 wrote:

Two words...
MAME Machine!


Heh.. I've already got an old computer sitting behind me with my XArcade stick and MAME, so I can relive my quarter-munching days. I've noted some nice cabinets that have all you need for MAME built-in, which is tempting when I don't have as much time as I used to. I think a sit-down cocktail table would be really tempting to add.
 
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Consider using modular housing to reduce cost (you can put the money elsewhere!) Even trailer-style modules could produce a great space. If I were doing it, I'd get two open 14x50' units to combine into the 28x50 great hall gaming room. Another 14x50' would be all storage, possibly parallel to the hall for hall insulation. A third 14x50 would be a standard two bedroom, two bath mobile home configuration: that gives you kitchen, eating area, bathrooms, and extra bedrooms. And it acts as the entry to the gaming hall. (Obviously, you could go for 14x60, 12x40, etc.)

The convenience of having your guests outside your main home cannot be overstated. It's not just for the mother in law. Seriously, the time may come when a close relative may need to live with you for an extended period: this is a lot more acceptable to everyone when they don't disrupt your private space.

Tables: for bridge you need square or round tables, of course; while rectangular tables may be better for other games. (I noticed a variable height 3x6'[?] folding table at Costco recently--might it work with couches and easy chairs?) I suggest the folding plastic (resin?) business tables: moving around the heavy MDF tables will get old fast. Again, go with business products because they are far more durable than a typical home bridge table and folding chairs. If you want a warmer feeling for family gatherings or more social events, tablecloths will help: remember those crummy banquet tables are under almost every fancy banquet or convention you've seen.

Chairs: stack, don't fold! Folding chairs are uncomfortable and not very durable. Stacks can be placed on dollies to move around easily. Several kinds are good: Business/banquet chairs are durable and fairly comfortable, available in a variety of colors. Resin chairs are available in a variety of styles/comfort levels, they're virtually indestructable, and they can be used outside as well. Unfortunately, arm chairs tend to have clearance problems with table tops; buy tables first.

Consider a stage/seating riser, maybe 16x8' one step high, on wheels with locking brakes. This would allow a couple rows of raised seating or a stage for demonstrations or talks. If you have couches and easy chairs available in the home unit, this gives you three seating levels: the low couch seating, stack chairs on the floor, and stack chairs on the riser.

Lights: Lighting is in flux. LEDs are starting to invade home use, and in a few years you may be able to paint your ceiling with OLED lights, variable in color and intensity. For now, spend on switching, so one end of the room can be light and the other dark, but cheap-out on the lights themselves. Consider just going for 4' fluorscents for now, with daylight tubes if you want the nice color. I completely endorse the idea of keeping your games in the dark: even northern light will fade your games (personal experience). Consider no windows in the gaming area: this will allow use of a less expensive data projector instead of a flat screen. (A data projector also lets you use a whiteboard as a screen or put magnetized pieces on the screen. For shooting pictures, a data projector can be a source of precisely colored light.) Consider some sets of blackout drapes to divide the gaming space, so, for instance, the championship game can be in the lighted end, while people watch the game on the big screen in the dark end. The divided space would also allow duplicate-bridge-like tournaments for games that display more information than bridge.

Floors: hardwood, sure. But hex parquet on one end, orthogonal parquet on the other. Extra points for an M. C. Escher transition.

Walls: think about games on walls or game photos on walls. Or bulletin boards or white boards? You could have it all, moving wall hangings with the tables and chairs. If you have the budget (and it isn't much comparatively), consider a 36 or 42" wide DesignJet printer to print oversized boards, pictures, diagrams, video backdrops, etc. (Perspective: the RRT board is 36x42, so it could be printed on a 36" printer.)

Shelving: keep it in the storage area: dark and dry will preserve your games. Consider automatic lighting: someone walks in, the lights go on; they leave, the lights go out. And you want Halon instead of sprinklers unless you acrylic-coat your games.

(Just kidding about the Halon, but acrylic spray is great.)
 
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Todd McCorkle
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http://ultimategamingtable.org/

Someone shared this link with me some time ago. I think the table is rather cool. The room itself has a few additional perks as well.

Will there be a ''this old house'' episode of BGWS soon?
 
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Donald Dennis
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You need some rolling, close-quarter, storage like in the basement of the library.
 
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Thumis Dalidalisa
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You could check out this thread:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/article/1040321#1040321

I find them difficult to describe but I think you want the kind of chairs they typically have at the business class lounge at an airport. Firm enough to sit up straight in, but rounded and comfy too.
 
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James
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snicholson wrote:
ghost604 wrote:

Two words...
MAME Machine!


Heh.. I've already got an old computer sitting behind me with my XArcade stick and MAME, so I can relive my quarter-munching days. I've noted some nice cabinets that have all you need for MAME built-in, which is tempting when I don't have as much time as I used to. I think a sit-down cocktail table would be really tempting to add.


You obviously have some background on the subject, so forgive me if I am stating something you already know...

A fully functional cocktail cab with everything included will run between $2500 and $3500 depending on all the little do-dads. Making it yourself from a kit can cut the cost in half (especially since you already have the computer!) or more. Cocktails are great for this since the kits can be put together in just a few hours and the only "woodworking" you have to do is bolting the controls and monitor (19inch computer monitors are perfectly sized) into place. The two sites I would recommend for you to check out would be:

www.dreamarcades.com
www.arcadedepot.com (my personal favorite)

I am no supergenius, but if you get serious into this I would be happy to help answer any questions you might have.

Cheers
 
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Robert Wesley
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well, should YOU be hearing this 'tune' in your vicinity, then you KNOW what's going DOWN eh?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pGHuEcAOcuY

"ya sure ya betcha!" devil
 
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Scott Nicholson
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ghost604 wrote:


www.dreamarcades.com
www.arcadedepot.com (my personal favorite)

Cheers


You know, after your post, I went researching and found the dreamarcards.com site. I really like the look of the $799 4-controller cocktail table kit, and I would wager once we build this space, I will get one of those.

I've always wanted an arcade box, but thought it would be too intrusive; I had completely forgotten about the cocktail table format.
 
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