Creating a game room can be ideal for families or anyone who enjoys having a good time with good company. From the best furniture, to the best board games and game consoles, we asked the experts how to design and enjoy the best game room.
What are some of the key elements to consider as you are designing your game room?
“Some key elements we highly recommend to keep in mind when considering a game room for your space are:
- Measurements are vital. Each game requires ample space for maximum enjoyment. If working with multiple games, consider mapping out your room before you make purchases. Our most popular fitting is for a utah pool table and we help clients identify the optimal table size in relation to the room size Another overlooked factor is the length of pool cues which heavily impacts the game.
- What do your entrance points look like? For example, an 8ft Air Hockey table will have a hard time being installed in a loft due to the weight and bulk of the item. Anything is possible, but to avoid install issues, really make note of access points for delivery and installation.
- Quality of products. We cannot stress this enough. The allure of free shipping or a brand name, does not mean a quality product and/or service. Read reviews and do your research. Online support systems are not as attentive as your local small businesses!
- Create a budget. There are great quality products within your reach. Having an idea of budget gives your game room designer a starting point to work with.”
What are the essential considerations before installing a bowling alley at home?
“Today there are multiple options for creating a one-of-a-kind bowling experience right at home. Brunswick Bowling offers multiple lane size options and products to fit any space and design style, including Duckpin Social, a modern—and space-saving—twist on traditional bowling. Homeowners should look for a low-maintenance pinsetter such as Brunswick StringPin pinsetter. Choose a scoring system that offers a variety of engaging games along with ongoing new offerings that keep the experience fresh for years to come, such as Sync scoring. Kids love Sync’s EZ Bowling and Angry Birds™, while The Buzz and pinpix are great for groups of friends. MyShot helps competitive bowlers stay sharp, tracking performance and game stats and offering spare patterns for practice. Above all, select a supplier with a proven track record for reliable equipment who can provide expert planning assistance and installation services.”
Michael Postema, Brunswick Bowling Products
How to Soundproof a Game Room
“I suggest a few things you can do, and your choice will likely depend on your skill level and budget.
1. I’ll first suggest using thick curtains on the windows and carpets while also hanging pleated fabric on the walls. Instead of thick curtains, you could explore acoustic sound dampening panels, and while these aren’t exactly the same as soundproofing, they’ll go a long way to reduce the sound. Since your doors, windows, and HVAC ducts are the biggest contributors to sound leakage, we would generally recommend that you use window and door seal gaskets for a good seal, while using a rolled-up towel to cover the gap at the bottom of the doors.
2. Depending on your budget and needs, a great way to soundproof a room is actually making a room within a room. So depending on the size of your room, you could build a smaller room with doors, windows, and ceilings while covering every surface with multiple feet of thick and heavy pads.
I will also add that elevating your subwoofer off the ground goes a long way to help with soundproofing as the vibrations can easily travel through floorbeds.”
What should people consider before choosing a screen for gaming and streaming?
“This is actually a very dense subject as there are a lot of factors that come into play when choosing a monitor for gaming and streaming but if you are only choosing one then the initial question is how much are you willing to spend? If your budget is in the lower $200 or $300 range, then you choice is already made up for you as you will be confined to bargain 24-25″ 1080p 144hz screens or occasional great deals on 1440p 144hz. If you’re going to be playing fullscreen, its best to monitor chat on a separate display or even your phone for best performance on your PC but playing on Borderless Windowed or plain ol’ Windowed mode should allow more responsive interaction with your viewers if you are streaming. As your budget increases, restrictions loosen up and you definitely have a lot more options in terms of capabilities, panel size and extra features. There are definitely specific things here that can compliment your gaming and streaming experience.”
What are the essential considerations before buying a neon sign?
“Quality is essential: Order from a reputable neon sign brand. Neon signs made from high-quality materials can last for up to ten years.
Know your budget: Knowing your budget helps you to decide the size and complexity of your neon sign.
Easy to Install: Modern LED neon signs include acrylic backings that make the installation simple. Make sure the mounting kit is included in the box.
Short lead time: Most neon signs are custom-made. It’s better to choose a neon sign vendor that offers a short lead time so that it won’t put a hold on your project or event.
Please let me know if you have any questions.”
How do board games bring families together?
“There are so many benefits to playing physical board games together as a family. For starters, playing games together delivers face-to-face interactions that are often hard to come by. This social engagement helps keep families connected through a shared experience in a safe setting. Such games also utilize most of our senses and stimulate our minds and imagination. And when you experience that with someone, it creates lasting memories and bonding. Plus, there are many games that are cooperative rather than competitive. So if you want to learn to work better together, we’d highly recommend playing some fun cooperative board games.”
The Board Game Family
How do you keep a diverse board games collection
“We always look at the members of our gaming group when building a diverse board game collection. It’s easier to find a lot of diverse game mechanics when you separate it into different categories based on who you actually play with. A few easy categories are gateway games, travel, party, cooperative, strategy, bluffing, etc. Each game we buy has to fall in some category that matches one or more of our gaming groups’ members. Otherwise, you end up with a lot of board games shrink-wrapped on your shelf that never get played.”
Bryan Truong, GameCows.com
What to look for in buying darts?
“When buying darts and darting equipment, consumers are faced with two choices to start, Soft Tip or Steel Tip Darts. Most consumers start with Soft Tip Darts. They can be used at many Pubs and Dart venues. Next is to determine the Gram (weight) of the dart they will be throwing. I would recommend starting at 18 grams. If you want a heavier dart, there are products that can “Add a Gram” that is inexpensive. Or they can purchase a heavier dart which move up normally in 2 gram increments. ie: 20, 22, 24 grams. Darting is no longer just a game played in a Pub. A lot of people are adding it to their Home Game Room. It can be fun for the entire family, or guests that come to visit. As to the board people are selecting for their Home Game Rooms, most are buying the boards that accept Soft Tip Darts. Consumers can purchase the simplest boards that you would use manual scoring, up to an electronic board that will score up to 4 players automatically. Even better yet, a new Product has hit the market! It is called the Gran Board! This Gran Board has every bell and whistle that you could imagine. The Gran Board is Bluetooth enabled, allowing to play a family across town, or play a game with someone across the globe! All with your Smart Phone and a Gran Board! Darting can be a low cost ‘in’ for adding to ones Home Game Room. There are multiple different Darting Games that can be played on a dart board, and all skill levels find it great family fun.”
What do you need to design a luxury games room?
“Game rooms no longer have to be stuck in the basement. Now entertainment spaces are integrated into home bars, outdoor decks, lounges, and home movie rooms. They are also popular in public spaces, including corporate multi-home amenities, offices, and hotels.
- The perfect game room starts with you, your personal taste, needs, desires.
- What are you looking to accomplish with this space? Is it for just you? Is it for families with kids? Friends? Colleagues?
- Is it a multi-use space, for example, an open air dining/living room? What is your primary use of space and secondary?
- Is the game room indoors or outdoors?
- How much space do you have to work with? Putting together a room layout with measurements is necessary.
- What aesthetic inspires you and suits the interior? Do you like traditional, contemporary, futuristic? What colors do you like?
- There are a lot of questions to answer to figure out your priorities before designing the space. You can also work with an interior designer to help make the important decisions.
- Luxury Game Rooms can have many elements. Most popular are pool tables. At 11 Ravens we offer a wide variety of designs that can be customized to suit your needs or we can design a bespoke table from scratch. Knowing what you need and the visual inspiration is a great starting point for this. If you have a multi-use space, consider a convertible pool table with a table top that can be converted for ping pong, dining, or executive uses.
- If you like other games, like chess, table tennis, mahjong, poker, etc, luxury game rooms like the ones 11 Ravens designs often have a coordinating set of tables. It is a great way to entertain parties or offer variety for everyday use.
- Another factor in a great game room is lighting. Selecting a statement ceiling fixture above your pool table or other gaming tables can make an impact and highlight the beauty of the table. Spotlighting in your game room can create ambience and help viewing the play surface clearly.
- For outdoor game spaces, consider teak or coated aluminum for weather resistance.
- In all cases, it’s best to coordinate every element of the space so that the game room is both functional and striking. The measurements you created earlier will help you layout your tables. Pool, for example, needs 5′ around each side of the table for proper play. Those little details when laying out a luxury game space makes a huge difference.
No matter your style, needs, and game preferences, the best way to go about creating the luxury game room of your dreams is trusting designers that are trusted professionals to help guide you throughout the process. 11 Ravens is available to help create the furnishings for your game room at the highest quality with unique features, and top of the line materials.”
What are the essential considerations to design an aesthetic game room?
“When it comes to designing, appearance obviously tends to be the face of the project. Get the best accessories that present a mesmerizing look when fully functional such as contrasting colors, bright or sublime lighting and coloring choices (depending on the preference) or game room items. To achieve the best game room experience, you should choose well-known brands for both the components and accessories for gaming as well as the items in the game room such as lights, wallpaper, posters, or the paint. As an example, if you used a set of LED lights around your CPU to give it a compelling outlook, a single non functioning light would dramatically diminish the value of the whole setup. When brand new, all the items that you use for your game room would surely look good together and present an appealing composition when done right. In order to preserve the aesthetics of a game room, it becomes essential to choose a proven and assuring brand.”
What is the best way to store and clean your darts?
“Darts look deceptively clean, even when they are not. Just think of how dirty your hands are, everything you’ve been touching, and then you are going to be holding your darts for an hour or so while playing. But keeping your darts clean does not have to be difficult. For the average player, I recommend this simple 3 step formula for keeping your darts clean:
-Wash Your Hands: Start by washing your hands before you play. When you wash your hands, you not only remove dirt, but you will also remove some of the oily build-up on your skin. This is a great first step to keeping your darts clean, but removing the oils from your hands has the added benefit of helping you grip the darts better. A better grip means a better throw. That’s right! Clean darts can actually improve your game!
-Wipe Down When Done: There are many ways to clean your darts once your game is done, but the easiest way is to use regular baby wipes. Just give your darts a thorough rub down with the wipes and dry with a paper towel. If your darts are particularly dirty you can use a stronger disinfecting wipe, just be careful you do not use something so strong it removes any paint from your darts.
-Store Your Darts Safely: To store your darts safely, I recommend keeping your darts in a dart case. Even though dart cases are generally meant for players on the go, keeping your darts in a case even while at home has many benefits. A case will help to keep the darts clean from any dust and dirt. It will keep all the darts together in one place, and it will prevent them from falling or bumping into things that may cause damage to the dart or whatever its sharp point comes in contact with.
And that’s it. Cleaning your darts does not have to be a chore. It only takes a few seconds to wipe them down after play and they are ready to go when you are.”
How to set up surround sound in a rec room
“Step 1: Determine your speakers: Get the right equipment: You will need speakers, a receiver, and a subwoofer. You may also want to get a pre-amp, and a power conditioner.
A receiver is a device that takes the audio signal from a CD player or a tape deck and converts it to a digital signal for use by an amplifier.
A subwoofer is a speaker that is designed to reproduce low frequencies. It will make your speakers sound better. You can find a subwoofer at any home improvement store.
A pre-amp is a device that takes the signal from the receiver and amplifies it, and it is usually placed near the speakers.A power conditioner is a device that restores the original power to a receiver by removing any noise that may be present.
Step 2: Find the right subwoofer: A subwoofer is what makes the room really boom.
Step 3: Install the speakers: Installing the speakers is easy. First, you’ll have to open up the speaker box. Then, you’ll have to find the wires. Next, you’ll have to connect the wires to the speakers. Finally, you’ll have to put the speakers in their proper place.
Step 4: Determine your speakers’ location: Determine where you want your speakers. Place them around your rec room in a way that they face each other.
Step 5: Select the right height: You’ll want to place your speakers at a height that allows you to comfortably listen.”
What is the proper way to clean and maintain a neon sign?
“Using a feather duster to carefully and slowly remove dust build-up from your neon sign, repeating this process up to 3 times should remove any surface dust from your neon sign. For tougher or larger dust/grime build-ups we’d recommend using a damp luke-warm microfibre cloth to rub over each portion of your neon sign, removing the grime as you go. Ensure the cloth is not too damp, as you don’t want water or condensation around and in the wiring of your sign, as this will damage the neon sign. Patience is key when cleaning a neon, so please do not rush the process otherwise you may damage your sign, and face an unwanted bill to have your neon sign repaired.”
What is the best way to store and maintain board games?
“Our company uses hollowed book boxes as the packaging for our games. For your other games you can remove the bulky cardboard and instead put the contents of your game in a faux book, treasure box, antique tin, etc and use those items as decor. Your guests will be pleasantly surprised when they discover that game night was hiding right under their noses.”
Tips for using neon signs to decorate a game room
“Customise your neon. Consider going for a multi-color neon sign in order to have more customisability with colours and lighting effects. This allows you to change the mood of your room based on the game you’re playing. This can be using different colors in one neon, or going for full RGB. You can also consider customising the acrylic backing to your choosing. This can be transparent, black, or printed to enhance your neon sign. Make sure to get the right size. Measure your wall and plan out where your neon will go before purchasing it.”
What is the best way to hang a dartboard?
“Most boards come with a mounting bracket when they are purchased. Typically, these are very generic. We like to use the following brackets for a much sturdier approach:
-For soft tip (plastic tip): People should use this type of U-shaped bracket for granboard dartboards.
-For traditional steel tip: People should use this type of ‘U’ holder dartboard mounting bracket.”
How to choose quotes on your neon sign that are aligned with your game room design?
“Based on our experience with our community of clients:
> You can either choose a logo based on a tribute of your favorite streamer or create your own custom neon sign.
> You want your neon sign to be seen. The bigger is not necessarily the most relevant. Make sure that the size of your neon fits your video camera frame.
> There are several diameters of neon tube. Using a 8- or 9-mm neon tube will avoid your neon sign to flicker during your recording session. Each custom neon sign vendor can precisely inform on the quality of tube that will be used to create a design.
> Choose a custom neon sign that comes with a dimmer. Light intensity needs to be dimmable for a better outcome on your sessions. Also, you could assess how comfortable you are with the neon light.
> For your game room you can choose a LED neon sign better than a glass neon sign. The neon is low voltage, safe and silent. Single color, several color or even color changing are many possibilities to have your own custom design and feel that you build a game room of your own.”
What are the factors people should consider when choosing board games for the whole family?
“Different games suit different families. If you don’t play many games, look for a game with simple rules that can be taught in under 5 minutes. Avoid games that include loads of luck as there is minimal player agency and the family is less likely to want to play again. Look for games with quick turns or simultaneous play – these will keep everyone fully engaged. Games where it’s not clear who is winning until scores are tallied help to train children to enjoy playing rather than needing to win.”
Ellie Dix, The Dark Imp.