Why so quiet? Are you still open? What's going on?

by Matthew Honeywill

Being the first post for this blog section you might be wondering what on earth this is all about. In the most summarised form, we have been super quiet on our social media postings and not many know what is happening with us. This said, we have been busy behind the scenes and these articles will give you an idea of what we are up to.

With everything that has been happening we have had to change almost everything we do. From cancelling in store events (we actually had a years worth of events planned too), to figuring out how we can still run some of them over the internet.

There is still a lot of things we have to do so expect more of these posts.

Up until now we have had two main focuses, the first was finding a way to keep people connected and still able to play their games and the other was getting the retail side of the store online.

Community Togetherness

Keeping people connected is so important, more so now that everyone is isolating and unable to hang out in person. We started with Discord and it has helped get people chatting from the various groups, and is also helping them come together as a community.

I myself have joined a couple of Dungeons and Dragons games over Discord voice. One of these groups used to meet up in person before the gathering lock down occurred, and the biggest take away I have found is that it just isn't the same level of interaction with the group. Being able to see someone's face, the expressions given, and someone to hold accountable for their actions makes such a huge difference.

With this in mind, we have been exploring alternative options and have tested out a number of video based solutions.  The end result was settling on a video conferencing system called Zoom, and although it requires some advanced planning for events, it can also be utilised for other events that would normally have been held in store. 

We are now working through the process of getting each event that is capable, online and getting the community on board and used to the new way of doing things. Patience is key and there will be a lot of adjusting involved.

Events currently ready to go:

  • Tuesday night commander
  • Friday night magic (modern, standard, pioneer)
  • Fortnightly Dungeons and Dragons
  • The painting collective (hobby/painting community)

In addition to our previous events, we have been working on new activities to keep people engaged. The first of which went live this week being our "Quarantine Minipainting Competition". With free entry, it provides a fun activity to be involved in alongside other community members, as well as the chance of taking out a prize for your efforts.

Web Store

A rather daunting task we have had to shift our focus to recently is getting all of our lovely stock on to the website, and it isn't a small task. Did you know we have over 6,000 different products in the system? Over the last few weeks we have been hunting down images, descriptions, set search filtering tags, and attempting to figure out which items are not even available any more. I should note, we still have a long way to go, but we are getting there. The end goal being that, should we have to close the gates to the actual store, you will still be able to order those supplies you need from us and we can deliver it to straight to you.

What else is happening?

In the weeks ahead we are working on put out regular articles about the latest games or just ones that we absolutely love, as well as community engagement posts where you can have your say about what you love. We are continuing to get our regular roster of events online, with Yu-Gi-Oh next on the ranks to be set up. Stock will continue to come in and be uploaded to the website and most importantly home delivery will be setup for the local areas.

How can you support us

The biggest thing you can do is support the community, help people get setup and connected, be supportive and patient in these trying times and most importantly look after yourself.

If you want to support us directly, we have setup a Patreon and these funds go directly into paying the staff, bills and help us continue to improve what we have to offer.


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