Talking Business: Blue Cat Games offers board gamers a place to meet, eat and defeat | Local Business

Otto Eovaldi


A new organization is bringing sport evenings into the A few Rivers Shopping mall.

Blue Cat Online games opened in January at the southern end of the shopping mall in close proximity to the Regal Cinemas. The retailer attained the next stage of its evolution this thirty day period when it opened its kitchen area, turning into a board game café.

Homeowners Ben and Kristen Otteson say they want Blue Cat Game titles to be as a great deal of a social area as a organization. Just one of the causes they needed a storefront in the shopping mall was to draw in folks strolling by, even if they only stopped by for a snack or a speedy card sport while waiting for a movie.

“We’re striving to be all-encompassing. We’re not just in this article to sell you a game, you can get a meal and expend time with folks,” Ben Otteson explained.

Otteson left Longview right after graduating from superior university. He ran Western Paladin Video games in Walla Walla from 2012 till the pandemic closed his keep in 2020. The Ottesons moved back to Cowlitz County to be nearer to relatives and right after their daughter was born, they began generating strategies to open a new organization.

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Around the 1st 4 months, a handful of beloved video games have become the most well-known with website visitors. Aggressive card games like Magic: The Accumulating and Pokémon have been the focus of quite a few of the more substantial functions. Other crowds have appear by way of for tabletop part-taking part in video games like Dungeons & Dragons or classics like cribbage and bingo.

A surprise strike is Klask, a edition of air hockey performed on a tiny magnetic board. Multiple Klask boards dot the tables throughout the shop.

At the back again of the shop is Blue Cat’s substantial library of board and card video games. The Ottesons maintain a copy of almost each individual video game which is for sale in the library so buyers can try them out right before buying them.

“We get a good deal of dad and mom coming by way of with kids, seeking to come across a thing which is heading to entertain all of the household. Becoming able to give it a shot helps make it less difficult,” Otteson reported.

Kristen Otteson manages the foods side of the organization. The April menu characteristics largely scorching puppies and sandwiches, together with some drinks and scaled-down treats. The sizzling canine have been the most preferred meal more than the very first number of weeks, particularly the BCG Seattle Doggy and a Nutty Narrows Pet topped with peanut far better and jalapenos.

“We’ll be transforming the menu seasonally, we can alter the artwork and the board online games at the entrance of the retail store. Each and every time you arrive in will be a little unique,” Ben Otteson claimed.

Website visitors can fall by to enjoy the bulk of their game titles for free of charge. The key exceptions are the foosball and shuffleboard tables, which are portion of the store’s membership system. Members fork out $20 for a four-thirty day period period of accessibility to individuals tables, the store’s Wi-Fi password and booster packs for match game titles like Magic the Collecting.

Otteson said the third phase of Blue Cat Games’ growth will concentration on offering far more particular occasions and tournaments. The store’s been screening unique occasions and times to see what is effective greatest.

Not every single party has been a hit, but the Ottesons say that is component of figuring out in which the community’s passions are and how they can supply the ideal probable environment.

“It’s a small little bit like a bar,” Ben Otteson claimed. “You want to have that social emotion and substantial vitality. You want to be below gaming when anyone else is gaming.”


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