All-Time Best Board Game Stores in NYC

Are you ready to take your board game nights to the next level? Look no further, as we take you on a tour of the best board game shops in the Big Apple! New York City is a hub of creativity and entertainment, and its board game scene is no exception.

Whether you’re looking to find the latest and greatest releases or just a cozy environment to play games with friends for a few hours, these shops have got you covered. So gather your friends, roll the dice, and get ready for a wild ride through the city’s top spots for all things tabletop gaming.

Recommended: 64 Surprisingly Nerdy Things to do in NYC

Evaluation Criteria

Okay folks, it’s time to put on our critical thinking caps and delve into what makes a board game shop truly top-notch.

We’ve scoured the city, tried and tested each shop, and have come up with a list of must-haves that will make any board gamer swoon. From the vastness of their game selection to the coziness of their play areas, we’ve got it all covered.

So let’s get started and find out what it takes to make the cut in the competitive world of New York City board game shops!

1SelectionGood variety of games & supplies
2PricesCost of items
3AmbianceLighting, cleanliness, atmosphere, room rentals available
4RefreshmentsFood and drinks are available & taste good
5Play SpaceAvailability, amount, etc
6StaffDepth of knowledge and general helpfulness
7ExtrasRegular events, quality game demos, online store, rewards program

Best Board Game Shops in NYC

Board game shops are thriving in New York City! No need to make a reservation, just show up, browse the selection, and buy some fun games or components. With a wide selection of games to choose from, you can explore many different genres and themes all in one place.

Go by yourself or bring some friends along to join in on the fun.

Whether you’re a hardcore gamer or just looking for a casual experience, board game shops have something for everyone.

The Compleat Strategist

The Compleat Strategist

Incredible in-store & online inventory of board games, role playing games, card games, puzzles, vintage and out of stock games. No video or online games.

1Selection★★★Excellent variety of games & supplies
2Prices★★★MSRP prices
3Ambiance★★★Large store, but not very organized
5Play SpaceN/A
6Staff★★★★Helpful but not highly specialized
7Extras★★★Quality online store

The Compleat Strategist is the perfect place to spend a lazy afternoon browsing and discovering new games.

As soon as you step in, you’ll hit stacks of games from floor to ceiling. It’s like a library, but with games instead of books. They have everything from the newest and most popular board games to the classic games you played as a kid. And if you’re into role-playing games, they have a whole section just for you.

The staff are friendly and knowledgable, but with so many options, it can be hard to locate one specific game or for them to give the perfect recommendation. So be patient!

If you’re a serious gamer, you’ll want to give yourself plenty of time to explore every nook and cranny of the store.

Geek Forest

Large board game shop in Brooklyn with many novelty items and regular activities for kids.

1Selection★★★Good variety of games; novelty items are the focus
2Prices★★★MSRP Prices
3Ambiance★★★★★Very clean & well organized
5Play SpaceN/AN/A
6Staff★★★★★Very knowledgable about store products
7Extras★★★ Online store

If you’re a nerd at heart, then Geek Forest in NYC is the perfect spot for you. They have everything a nerd could want: board games, sci-fi books, comic books, toys, and even arudino boards for the tech-savvy. They’ve got a wide range of items, including some hidden gems that are hard to find elsewhere at reasonable prices (Keanu Reeves adult coloring book… yes please!).

The staff are kind and attentive, always happy to help you find what you’re looking for. Although they do have some fantastic activities for kids, the shop is definitely designed to appeal Adults as well.

But if you’re interested in kids programs, they offer after school classes in robotics, animation, Dungeons & Dragons, game development and chess along with full week spring break & summer camps.

So come on in, let your inner geek out to play, and explore everything Geek Forest has to offer!

Best Board Game Shops with Events in NYC

These shops offer a strong community in addition to having a good inventory of games and components. They all have a decent sized play space, regularly scheduled events or tournaments, and basic snacks. Entrance to events or tournaments usually costs a flat fee and will often involve prizes for winners.

Bring some friends or come by yourself and make some new ones!

A Store of Fire and Dice

A Store of Fire and Dice (Queens)

Quality store where board gaming & TCGs meet community.

1Selection★★★★★Large selection
2Prices★★Expensive games & components
3Ambiance★★★★★Clean & well organized, with fun artwork
4Refreshments★★★Vending machine snacks & drinks
5Play Space★★★★★Lots of space to play and shop
6Staff★★★Knowledgable & inclusive staff
7Extras★★★Regular events

What really sets A Store of Fire and Dice apart from other stores is the warm, welcoming community that gathers on a nightly basis to play games or just share information about gaming. The owners are super friendly and have created a real sense of community among their customers (check the facebook group for the latest event info). And if you’re totally not sure what you’re doing, the staff is always happy to help.

The play space is big enough to host all kinds of gaming fun, and let’s not forget about the amazing artwork around the shop – it’s like a gallery of epic items. As soon as you walk in the doors you will feel empowered for your next campaign.

While you’re there don’t forget to browse the incredible selection of collectables – if it’s nerdy, they probably have it! (video games, card games, movies, games, etc)

If you’re feeling peckish, just hit up the vending machine for some quick snacks.

King’s Games (Brooklyn)

Smorgasbord of NYC’s finest nerdy activities: game tournaments, internet cafe, in-store video game rentals, and TCG & miniatures game component shop. Strong community.

1Selection★★★★Good selection of TCGs & miniatures with components
2Prices★★★★★Prices are fair and clear
3Ambiance★★★Clean & well lit with fandom posters
4Refreshments★★★Candy, snacks, & soda
5Play Space★★★★★Large space; come early to be assured a spot
6Staff★★★★Friendly & helpful
7Extras★★★★Regular events with a consistent crowd, online store

King’s Games is the perfect place for well-rounded, multi-interested gamers. You can get your hands on everything from Pokemon cards to booster boxes and even rare finds! They also have a wide selection of video games that you can rent and play on the latest console systems (in-shop only). And if you need quality internet to get some work done or game even harder they have an internet cafe with all the necessary services (faxing, scanning, printing, copying, etc).

Most importantly, Kings Games is more than just a store. It’s a hub for competitive gamers, offering a variety of tournaments and great atmosphere for players to come together and show off their skills.

Whether you’re a hardcore gamer or just looking for some casual fun, Kings Games is the perfect spot to let your gaming flag fly!

Most popular titles played at King’s Games:

  • Magic: The Gathering
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!
  • Pokemon
  • Cardfight!! Vanguard
  • HeroClix
  • Flesh and Blood

Gaming Universe Corp (Queens)

Best TCG Shop in all five burrows.

1Selection★★★★★Large selection of card related games – Limited stock of other games
2Prices★★★★★Staff go above & beyond for fair prices; +$15 tournament
3Ambiance★★★Clean, but not fancy
4Refreshments★★Drink machine available
5Play Space★★★★Seats ~50 people
6Staff★★★★★Depth of knowledge and general helpfulness
7Extras★★★★Regular events & online store

This store is jam-packed with all the latest and greatest TCG goods you could ever want. Their card game inventory is unbeatable, with a great variety of cards and even better prices.

If you’re looking for a spot to play some Magic the Gathering, Pokemon, Yu-Gi-Oh!, or any other card game, head down to the basement where you can battle it out with other passionate gamers for legitimately cool prizes. Although the place seats around 50 people, it can get pretty busy on tournament nights!

And if you need some deck building advice, the friendly and knowledgeable staff is always happy to help. With a welcoming atmosphere and tons of fun players, you’ll never feel unwelcome, ripped off, or bored at Gaming Universe Corp.

Best Hourly Rental Board Game Shops with a Cafe in NYC

Board game rental shops are an experience. Most shops offer an open game policy where visitors pay a cover fee to access a library of hundreds of games. You will find childhood comfort games, intensive strategy games, and everything in between. In addition to providing the fun, these shops have menus full of yummy treats!

Most visitors bring fellow game players with them or come in a group. If you’re looking to go by yourself, we recommend attending event nights for specific games such as MTG, D&D, etc.

Walk-ins are welcome at all of the board game rental shops listed below, however keep in mind that some fill up on event nights, weekends, and holidays so you may want to consider making a reservation before your visit.

The Uncommons (Manhattan)

Manhattan’s first board game cafe.

1SelectionLarge library
2Prices★★★$15 for 3 hour max; MSRP price on individual games
3Ambiance★★★★★Lighting, cleanliness, atmosphere, room rentals available
4Refreshments★★★Food and drinks are available & taste good
5Play Space★★★★Fits +65 people; Large back room available for rent
6Staff★★★★Depth of knowledge and general helpfulness
7Extras★★★Regular events, quality game demos, online store, rewards program
Walk-ins welcome; wait times can be long so we recommend getting a reservation.

The Uncommons is the perfect spot to grab a summer beer, coffee, or smoothie and get your game on! Both the game library and food menu are pretty extensive which will make it easy for you to hunker down with some friends and have a great time. Or go by yourself to one of their regular MTG events (a few times a week).

The only limitation is that the shop can get a bit cozy on weekends and holidays. Consider making a reservation before you go – this place is popular for good reason!

The Hideout: Board Game Lounge (Great Neck)

Snack. Sip. Scrabble.

1Selection★★+50 games
2Prices★★$25 for up to 3 hours; MSRP prices on games
3Ambiance★★★★Good light, well-organized games, table reservation available
4Refreshments★★★Chips, candy, ramen, soda, coffee and water (menu here)
5Play Space★★★★Good amount of space to play
6Staff★★★★Helpful & knowledgable about games offered
7Extras★★Monthly board game nights
Walk-ins welcome!

Hideout Board Game Lounge is the perfect place escape from the digital world and relax with some good old-fashioned game time. And don’t forget to grab a coffee, snack, or dessert at their cafe while you’re there!

Their annual and monthly membership options allow you to keep the fun going all year round. Plus, they have regular monthly board game nights, so you can meet other gamers in the area. Whether you’re a board game aficionado or just looking for a fun way to pass the time, Hideout has something for everyone.

Last Place on Earth (Brooklyn)

New York’s best “entertainment cafe”.

1Selection★★★★Good variety of games & supplies
2Prices★★★★★$10 for unlimited play; MSRP price on individual games
3Ambiance★★★★★Clean, good lighting and cozy atmosphere
4Refreshments★★★★Coffee shop & bakery; no hot prepared food
5Play Space★★★★★Lots of space for all kinds of activities
6Staff★★★★★Love to help visitors select games
7Extras★★★★Regular events, tarot card readings, D&D
Walk-ins welcome!

Looking for a chill place to hang out and play tabletop games with your buddies without breaking the bank? Look no further than Last Place on Earth! For just $10, you can play as many board games and card games as your heart desires, with no pesky time limits to cramp your style.

And if you need to take a break from all the gaming action, you can peruse their cute gifts (greeting cards, candles, earrings, etc), grab a snack or drink, or even join in on some of their many non-gaming events throughout the month, like movie nights, trivia, stand-up comedy, tarot card reading, open mics and pilates.

And the cherry on top? The mother-daughter owner duo are absolute gems who will make you feel right at home.

Hoboken Game Lounge (Hoboken)

Mega game & activity center with an active community.

1Selection★★★★★Extensive board games; Billiards, eSports, etc (see below)
2Prices★★★★★+$5/person/hr depending on activity; MSRP on individual games
3Ambiance★★★★Spacious and clean but entrance is rudimentary
4Refreshments★★★★★Full menu; free popcorn & bottled water
5Play Space★★★★★Availability, amount, etc.
6Staff★★★★★Depth of knowledge and general helpfulness
7Extras★★★★★Multiple membership offerings; Regular events

Hoboken Game Lounge is the perfect place for gamers to get their fix of fun and food. With tons of well-maintained activities, games, and equipment (including a robot ping pong opponent that serves balls for return), be prepared to lose yourself for hours.

It can get a bit crowded on event nights and holidays, but that just means there are more people to meet and play games with!

All visitors get free popcorn and bottled water included with the price of an entry ticket. However, if you’re feeling a bit more hungry, there is plenty of delicious food available for purchase to keep you fueled for hours of gaming. Whether you’re in the mood for chicken tenders, pizza, or mac n’ cheese bites, they’ve got you covered. And the best part? Bottomless beverages of coffee, soda, or tea with the purchase of a drink.

Activity list:

  • Billiards & League
  • eSports & Events
  • Mario Party
  • Chess for Children & Private Lessons
  • Extensive Board Game Selection
  • Darts League & Lessons
  • Magic the Gathering
    • Commander Nights & League
    • Friday Night Magic Draft
  • Dungeons & Dragons
    • Adult Groups
    • Kids Groups
    • Online Groups
  • Flesh & Blood
  • Pokemon Swap Meet
  • Warhammer Kill Team
  • Pinball
  • 3D Print Club
  • Golf Simulator
  • Ping Pong

Twenty Sided Store & Events (Brooklyn)

Hobby shop & board game cafe with a friendly gamer community.

1Selection★★★★★Good variety of games & supplies
2Prices★★★+$10 for play sessions; MSRP on individual games
3Ambiance★★★★★Very clean & well organized
4Refreshments★★★Snacks & drinks available for purchase
5Play Space★★★★Comfortable amount of play space
6Staff★★★★★Helpful, knowledgable & friendly
7Extras★★★★Regular events & online store
Walk-ins welcome!

Looking for a place to level up your niche gaming? Look no further than the Twenty Sided Store in Brooklyn. This place is clean, organized, and filled to the brim with all kinds of goodies: board games, miniatures, card games, role playing, Indie RPGS, D&D accessories that are difficult to find in stores, and more!

If you’re looking for a community to enjoy all of your fun gaming purchases with you, don’t miss out on the nightly events. Whether you’re into board games and TCGs or live action role-playing and D&D, there is a game night for you. From seasoned gamers to newbies just starting out, the Twenty Sided Store is the perfect place to grab a tea or cookie and chat just chat with people about games and all things gaming.

Sip & Play (Brooklyn)

South Brooklyn board game haven with quality bites, boba, & beer.

1Selection★★★★★300+ games (see list here)
2Prices★★★★$15 for 3 hours play; food is a little pricy
3Ambiance★★★★★Lighting, cleanliness, atmosphere, room rentals available
4Refreshments★★★★★Appetizers, salads, boba, beer, wine, mixed drinks, coffee
5Play Space★★★★Many small tables, make a reservation for larger groups
6Staff★★★★Staff will help explain complicated games
7Extras★★★★Regular MTG events, online reservation system
Walk-ins welcome!

This old-school, former laundromat , brick-lined cafe has a library of over 300 board games to choose from, super friendly staff, well-maintained games, and top-notch bubble tea. Its a wonderful place to spend the afternoon if you’re in the neighborhood.

If you have little ones, check out their after-school & summer camp programs for kids. The programs focus on game analysis, reverse engineering, and small-scale game development.

Recommended: 12 Best Board Game Shops in Brooklyn

Hex & Co (Manhattan)

Unleash your inner game master in Manhattan with a side of brews and beans!

1Selection★★★★★Good variety of games & supplies
2Prices★★★★+$10 for 3 hours play; food is a little pricy; Games at MSRP
3Ambiance★★★★★Lighting, cleanliness, atmosphere, room rentals available
4Refreshments★★★★★Full menu, coffee, & alcoholic beverages
5Play Space★★★★★Availability, amount, etc
6Staff★★★★Helpful staff, but not expert in all games
7Extras★★★★Regular events, private rooms & outdoor space available to reserve (online)
Walk-ins welcome!

If your perfect night out includes curling up with a board game & coffee in a warm, cozy cafe-like environment, then Hex & Co. is the perfect spot for you! There are multiple locations throughout NYC with slightly different menus & game offerings. Whether you’re a game hobbyist or a college student looking for a study break, Hex & Co. has something for everyone (plus they offer a student & kid discount on certain weeknights).

And if you’re feeling a little indecisive, the friendly staff is trained to provide excellent recommendations. They are always willing to help you find the perfect game to play and the ideal craft beer to accompany it.

Gamestoria (Queens)

Astoria-based shop specializing in board games, collectible card games, puzzles and role-playing games.

1Selection★★★Smaller in-store inventory; large Open Play Game List
2Prices★★★★$10 for unlimited play; MSRP price on individual games
3Ambiance★★★Clean, well organized and brightly lit
4Refreshments★★★★Light snacks; 1 free drink or snack w/open play fee
5Play Space★★A few tables, can be hard to find space to play
6Staff★★★★★Helpful, informed and willing to go above & beyond
7Extras★★★Regular events, online store, rewards program, social media & discord

Gamestoria is a board gamer’s paradise! You’ll find yourself soaking up the genius of your fellow gamers and admiring the vast collection of board games, D&D materials and MTG cards & packs. And let’s not forget the amazing mini figure art supplies – if you’re a collector or a painter, this is the place for you.

Plus there’s always something exciting going on, whether it’s a Magic tournament or a board game night – make sure to check the event calendar before you go.

Best Hourly Rental Board Game Shops with Kids Programs in NYC

Geek Forest

See description of the shop & kids programs above.

Brooklyn Game Lab

Scientific approach to spreading the pleasure of games and be a positive force in the lives of children, their families, and the neighborhood.

If you’re looking for a fun and lighthearted way to connect with your inner child, look no further than the Brooklyn Game Lab! Whether you’re a seasoned gamer or a newcomer, they’ve got something for everyone, even if you’re allergic to fun (but really, who is?).

By day, the Brooklyn Game Lab teaches kids the art of gaming and strategy, and by night, they open their doors to adults who are young at heart. In the evening, they offer a variety of games, from casual board games to intense RPG campaigns, and even Cards Against Humanity for singles night! And let’s not forget their incredible dungeon master skills for D&D sessions. The staff is both professional and personable, making sure everyone has a great time.

Kids programs focus on personal development areas such as social skills, executive functioning, and creative writing. They also offer the opportunity to network with those of similar interests such as activities for girl gamers, Pokemon lovers, and Magic the Gathering enthusiasts. So grab your dice, your cards, and your friends, and get ready for a night of fun at the Brooklyn Game Lab!

The Brooklyn Strategist

Locally owned gaming facility designed to mingle, think creatively, learn, and strategize.

The Brooklyn Strategist is a fantastic game haven where you can unleash your inner strategist, play to win, and connect with fellow game enthusiasts. With over 500 board and card games to choose from, you’re sure to find something that piques your interest, whether you’re into ancient warfare or word games.

And we’re not just for seasoned gamers – they are all about inclusivity and nurturing new players too. Whether you’re looking for a fun date night or a regular game night with your friends, we’ve got you covered.

But it’s not just about the games – it’s about developing the next generation of gamers. Their after-school programs, camps, and weekend classes for kids and families are designed to foster social interaction and problem-solving skills in a fun and engaging way. There are a variety of unique programs for kids, including the following:

  • Brain Benders (classic games and strategy basics to promote linear math concepts, working memory, and perceptual organization)
  • Mind Masters (problem solving through playing ancient to current games)
  • Introduction to RPGs (introduces players to basic tabletop role play and game systems – plus familiarity with multiple popular RPG games)
  • Chess I (strategies and mechanics of chess)
  • Introduction to Warhammer (learn to build, paint and play the game)

Best Board Game Clubs in NYC

The Carcosa Club

This non-profit, run by gamers for gamers, is the perfect place to feed your tabletop hobby. With many gaming tables and styles, including some with amazing mini-fig terrain, the Carcosa Club is a haven for gaming and wargaming alike. While you’re there make sure to check out the wallpaper in the bathroom – Its killer!

Like most clubs, the Carcosa requires monthly dues for regular 7 day access. If you’re interested in checking it out or visiting town for a short while, you can enter the club with a registered member or on one of the regular open attendance events (you will have to pay a cover fee).

One fun perk about this exclusive gaming hub is that the community is incredibly friendly and always willing to chat strategy, share gaming tips, or help you find a new game to suit your needs.

Although there isn’t food available in the club, when it’s time to take a break, although there isn’t food available for purchase in the club, you can find options in the nearby neighborhood.

NYC Poker Club

Throughout Manhattan, Queens, and Brooklyn, NYC Poker Club hosts both private and open poker games. The company has been in the business of hosting luxury poker nights in fancy condominiums and lofts for over 10 years. In case you didn’t know, its 100% legal to play poker in NYC!

Each game is organized and staffed by professionals such as a doorman, masseur, waiters, skilled dealers from Las Vegas and Atlantic City. Also, each poker night is fully stocked with free food delivery, drinks, snacks, and alcohol.

You may call and reserve a seat at one of their various organized games (for example: No Limit Hold ‘Em or Pot Limit Omaha) at any time. There is a short vetting process by the game manger to maintain the integrity of the game, and then they will send you instructions and the address.

Specialty Shops

Chess Forum

Play or learn the classic game of chess at New York’s last big chess store. Chess Forum is a gathering place for everyone from grandmasters to novices, elders to kindergarteners, celebrities, students, subway train engineers, police officers and kids to play and learn.

Chess Forum is open seven days a week from noon until midnight, and if there are enough players, it may stay open past midnight and into the early hours of the morning. For a flat fee of $5 per person per hour, players are given tables and chess pieces to use as long as they need.

Customers can select from a wide assortment of chess sets, boards, and clocks in all sizes, colors, materials, and pricing points. Or they can play a variety of other board games, including Backgammon, Checkers, Dominoes, Go, Chinese Chess, Chinese Checkers, Mahjong, Cribbage, Mancala, Poker, and Playing Cards.

One response to “All-Time Best Board Game Stores in NYC”

  1. Excellent review. So many options to choose from.

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