As a family we love playing games. And I'm not just talking about board games on a cold, wet day. We play them in the car to pass time, just for the fun of it in the house (usually Hide and Seek or Tag) and even, dare I say it, to help educate the kids. There are plenty of games to be played and new releases every year.
Now most of us can't afford to have a games room as such, but if you do have some space and you're up for turning it into a useable space for everyone – and I'm talking adults as well as kids, then here's some tips to putting together a cool home games room…
Consider A VR Area – Seriously
We may as well start with talking about virtual reality, because it’s the next big thing in gaming whether we like it or not! The trouble with it is that if you’re wearing a headset that’s putting you in a virtual environment that doesn’t exist, your body can be in a precarious position. i.e. moving around a room with your eyes covered isn’t usually a good idea.
One write-up published by Wired went into detail about how to set up a room for VR. It suggested clearing some space (obvs), dimming the lights and getting a swivel chair to move around on. This is a pretty good start, but I'd add that you might want to close off a set physical boundary for VR gaming.
You could rig up some sort of guardrail so that a given portion of the room is meant just for VR, with soft boundaries (so you don't get a sore head) and maybe that recommended swivel chair.
Consider A Combo Table
Now this I'm all over the idea myself, but if you'd like to designate your games room for some in-person games with friends or family like billiards, poker or ping-pong, you might want to think about splurging for a combination gaming table.
They make pieces of furniture that work for all of these games depending on what surface you use, and in some cases they can also transform into ordinary tables where you might sit and have a few drinks or play a card game – I'm thinking of a great evening of cards with friends à la Desperate Housewives style! Either way, it's a nice way to expand your gaming options without cluttering the room or altering the aesthetic too much.
Build On The Poker Element
If you want to have a poker table, or at least a table that allows for card games, why not go all out with the casino theme? It's actually easier to do these days, and you don’t have to buy tacky, clunky slot machine arcades to do it.
Instead you just need a few affordable tablets with an internet connection, maybe lined up along a bar counter or even kept in a drawer until you need them.
These tablets can let you and your guests enjoy additional casino games like slots and jackpots; SlotSource explains that there’s an extensive range of options to suit all players. That means you can offers visitors an endless library of gaming options if you wind up hosting your own casino night or game party. Sounds like a whole heap of fun, right?!
Of course I can't talk about creating a cool home games room without mentioning the lighting; it can make or break the whole feel of the room.
Unless you’re building a whole home addition or you’re doing extensive remodelling you probably have limited control over the structure of the room. But you can still control how it feels, largely through lighting.
As a huge gadget fan myself, CNET points out that there are now loads of LEDs that allow you to control lighting from your smartphone, including changing brightness and even altering the colour of the light. Disco lights anyone?
Okay, so you don’t want to have too much fun with these, but some careful tweaks can bring about an awesome game night atmosphere.
Opt For Comfortable Furnishings
This may be a no-brainer, but it’s still worth mentioning. Comfortable and welcoming surroundings go a long way to creating a space that you'll want to visit again and again.
And if the goal is to use the room for recreation, you should. Whether you plan on sitting around a table, lounging on a sofa playing video games, or even sitting around as people take turns with VR, you’ll want comfortable seats and couches. This is an area to prioritize if you’re working on a budget.
So that just about sums up the main pointers to creating a home games room. Other smaller considerations might include:
- A bowl of sweets/mints
- A mini fridge so refreshments are ‘on tap'
- Score sheets/pens – no hunting around for loose bits of paper!
- Blankets – to snuggle up under in the colder months!
If you had a games room, what would you want to put inside it?
A pin for your Interiors board