York’s first gaming café has sprung onto the next level with the launch of a crowdfunding campaign to pay for “all the fun things”.

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The Play! Gaming Café aims to be the premier venue for social gaming in the city.

As well as video games consoles available to play for free, it will boast arcade cabinets, pinball and an extensive collection of board games.

The duo behind the project, Tim Henton and Kirsty Dodge, launched their £11,000 Kickstarter campaign on Friday (March 10).

Altogether they need £35K they to open the café, but should be able to source the remaining funds if they can crowd-fund that first chunk.

‘Nothing really like it’

Every penny from the Kickstarter campaign goes to the fun side of the business, like arcade games and pinball machines. And it’s looking good: within three days of launch, they had more than £3K in pledges.

Tim and Kirsty are looking to bring a wide range of activities to the cafê including

Board games
Consoles
Weekly Pokemon Centre
Role playing games
Tabletop games
Gaming tournaments


“What we want to do is combine good food and games and create that perfect atmosphere that’s got the best of both worlds,” says Kirsty.

“There’s nothing really like it locally. It’s something we’re really passionate about.”

Permanent venue

Every type of gamer will be welcome

Tim added: “As well as being really into our games we are both massive foodies as well – so we want the café aspect of the business to be just as strong as the gaming.

“York, and Yorkshire in the wider area, has a really good gaming community. But at the moment there’s nowhere in York that is a permanent venue where people can get together, socialise and enjoy gaming.”

Kirsty and Tim both work at Café No 8 in York. Previously Tim was manager at Rafi’s Spice Box on Goodramgate.