Edmonton Board Game Cafes

Board game enthusiasts have capitalized on the hobby's popularity explosion. One of the results? Board game cafes. Cafes have popped up all across the world, and Edmonton is no exception. The first, Table Top Cafe, opened in 2013, and five others have opened since (including Table Top's second location). 

These cafes are an amazing opportunity to try before you buy. Most offer a huge selection of games and events and have hot and cold food and drinks to deal with the gaming munchies. Each cafe charges a small cover fee for your entire visit, and these fees help with the overhead costs and replacing or buying any games and parts.

Whether you are looking for a first date spot, hosting a birthday party for kids or adults, booking a corporate event, or just want to get away from the kids for a couple of hours, board game cafes are the perfect place to hang out. As we visit each cafe in Edmonton area, we'll include a write up and photos, and hope you find a home away from home at each one!


Cafe

Location

Phone

Cover Price

Hours of Operation

Beyond Board Games & Events

6 Blackfoot Road

780 851-2233

$5 flat rate PP

M-T 11-11 
F 11A-2A
Sa 10A-2A 
Su 10A-11P

Board N Brew Cafe

9929-103 St NW

780 757-8262

$5 flat rate PP

M-T 11-11
F 11A-2A
Sa 10A-2A
Su 10A-11P

Gamers' Lodge

10459-124 St NW

780 428-4880

Su-Th $10/table, 4 max;
F-S $5 PP

M-T 11A-12A
F-Sa 11A-2A
Su 11-11

Hexagon Board Game Cafe

10123-82 Ave NW

780 757-3105

$2.5/hr PP

Su-T 11-11
F 11A-12A
Sa 11A-1A

Table Top Cafe Downtown
 

Table Top Cafe South

10235-124 St NW



5716-75 St

780-705-5552


587-524-5323

$5 flat rate PP

M-T 11A-12A
F 11A-2A
Sa 10A-2A
Su 10A-12A


M-T 2P-12A
F 2P-2A
Sa 10A-2A
Su 10A-12A

Beyond Board Games & Events

Located just off Baseline Road as you enter Sherwood Park, Beyond Board Games & Events is a smaller cafe that just opened in 2016. It's starting to hit its stride and is expanding its shelves weekly as well as its event offerings. Jason is one of the owners, and he's a cheerful, approachable and friendly guy who is happy to assist, advise or receive suggestions.  

When we wandered BBGE, we first noticed the games were set up according to style: family games, party games, card games, and so forth. Jason is constantly organizing his shelves, and we love the way the games are laid out--not to mention the wall of kid-friendly and classic games. If you're unfamiliar with recent games or don't know where to start, hit this shelf first. 

Games available to play.

There are a lot of games and a lot of tables to choose from, and an excellent layout that affords separation between the tables and the games. Everyone working there is happy to talk about board games: what you play, what you haven't played, what you like, what they like, what they haven't tried, feedback, and on and on. It's a comfortable, relaxed atmosphere and there are always recommendations to lean on if you don't know what to play next. The cafe is clean and spacious and it's easy to blow an entire afternoon trying and playing games.

What we really enjoy about BBGE is how it supports the local community. Some employees are from the Robin Hood Association and BBGE has plans to partner with Mastermind Toys to run kids camps that teach Science, Technology, Math and Engineering (STEM) skills. Additionally, they run D&D and Magic: The Gathering events, among others, that provide a safe hangout for kids and teens while mom and dad have a night out. 

Cover charge is $5 which allows you to play all night long, and they are licensed so you can grab a beer as well as a few snacks while you play. Pop by BBGE for a laid-back night out. If you're new or a vet in the board games world, you'll likely find a few new games you haven't played before, and you'll definitely find good company who are happy to help you learn or talk games!

Board N Brew

Review coming up!








Gamers' Lodge

Review coming up!






Hexagon Board Game Cafe


Hexagon describes themselves as “Coffee, Games, and Community” and we agree. It is located on Whyte Avenue and has been one of the top places to kick back and play some games since 2014. We love the warm and inviting atmosphere that you experience from the minute you walk in the door.
Right by the door is the counter where you can order up some delicious drinks and treats. We recommend you give their lattes a shot; if you're lucky, you will even be treated to some latte art! Their Hexperts (employees) are great baristas as well. As you make your way further into the building, there are a bunch of tables to set up and play at, and at the back is the wall of over 600 games . Check out their list of games available.
Owners Kellie and Randy first experienced board game cafes in South Korea where they connected with gamers from all over the world. They wanted to bring that social experience home to Edmonton and started Hexagon with a personal board game collection of over 400 games. They now have a cafe location in Calgary as well!
A couple of us Hexagamers went in for the first time in late 2014. It was our first board game cafe and we loved the experience! We stared at the bookshelves containing the games for a very long time. There were just so many options and we wanted to play them all. The staff members were super helpful and informative, they helped us to pick out a few new games to try. On this visit we were introduced to Stone Age, a game that even years later is one of our favorites and definitely one of our most played games.
One of our favorite parts about Hexagon is that the Hexperts are very friendly and eager to help you learn a new game, on a busy night this of course is more difficult, but if you catch them at a slower time they are always willing to help.
The only downside to Hexagon is that the location isn't huge. It's in a popular area of the city and can have a wait since there aren't a ton of tables. We imagine this is why they choose to charge $2.50 an hour per person instead of the more popular $5 a day per person. This pricing structure has some positives and negative, but all in all we do agree with it for this location.
Hexagon offers, games, snacks, and beverages, all the things you need for a great time. Just bring some friends, or stop on by on your own. The atmosphere is so inviting that you're sure to have a great time either way!

Hexagon describes themselves as “Coffee, Games, and Community” and we agree. It is located on Whyte Avenue and has been one of the top places to kick back and play some games since 2014. We love the warm and inviting atmosphere that you experience from the minute you walk in the door.


Table Top Cafe -- Downtown

Table Top Cafe is the first and original board games cafe in Edmonton. Their downtown location is their second, located off Jasper Ave near the old MEC location. Parking might be tough on busy Saturday nights, but we had no issue finding a street spot in front of the cafe. 

When we walked in, we were pleased with how open, spacious and welcoming it feels. They built a cool feature wall using board game box tops that greets you when you come in, and there are shelves of accessories and some of the games they carry for sale.

Looking at the cafe from the door.

Staff greet you when you walk in, and if you're new, they're happy to explain how the cafe functions. We hit the cafe late afternoon, just before suppertime, and we were surprised at the constant stream of people coming in to join their friends or set up a new table. It's a popular spot and the staff keep busy, helping gamers and serving up drinks food (hilarious play-on-word names: Betrayal at Clubhouse on the Hill, Settlers of Chick-an, etc.). We grabbed a table and stood in front of the shelves of games, stumped on what to play. There are so many games and choices, and the shelves are organized by different elements: player numbers, themes, length, etc.

SO many games to choose from!

One of the staffers helped us pick a game (Dice Forge, which we ended up thoroughly enjoying) and walked us through how to play. We appreciated her easy, simple explanation and offer to help if we got stuck anywhere during the game. We never felt like we were bothering staff with our questions and definitely felt comfortable gaming and hanging out here.

Only some of the many games for sale.

This is absolutely a place you can spend hours at, and with a flat $5 cover charge, it's a pretty cheap way to pass the time. One cool option for the cafe is the group rooms you can reserve in advance. While you need to spend a certain amount to use them, if everyone orders a drink, the fee is covered quickly. It's a great way to get some privacy for a larger (or rowdier) group, staff event, birthday or general gathering. There are even several shelves of games you can buy if you need to add to your collection. 

We had a great time at Table Top and will definitely be back again!



Table Top Cafe -- South

Review coming up!

About the author

HexaGamers

We are the HexaGamers. Six good friends that love all things game related that gets us together to enjoy each other's company.

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