October 12, 2016 / by Eric

No matter what your scene is this October…

…whether you’re a Magic player (Modern Tournaments every Wednesday night, drafting on Saturday at noon and four, EDH on Sunday afternoons), an artist (Stranger Things art opening on Thursday, Oct 12th, biweekly Cosplay Drink&Draws every other Monday), a roleplayer (D&D Encounters every Wednesday & Sunday, Grrrls D&D every other Thursday), a cosplayer (Rocky Horror Picture Show live screening with special guest, Morgue Anne, Thursday, October 20th), a woman (Grrrls Game Nights Out every other Thursday), gay (Gaym Nights every other Monday, Playing with Bears on Saturday, Oct 15th) or some amazing combination of those things and more (Donatella vs Humanity, Oct 21st), we have got you covered!

All while playing weird stuff like our freaky new Halloween mix on both of our TVs!

Featuring special guest star… Doctor Who!
doctor-who
Yes! That one.

So whatever you’re into, however you’re into it, and whoever you’re into it with, come check out our constantly updated Special Events Page, find the event that’s right for you and come meet your people.

Or, to put it another way, come up to the lab and see what’s on the slab.

You’ll be so glad you did.

See you soon.

-Eric

September 29, 2016 / by Eric

As anyone who’s followed my personal gaming history knows, my personal sweet spot has always been roleplaying games, and in particular, indie RPGs.

So I was particularly thrilled to open our latest shipment from Indie Press Revolution and find it not only chock full of standards like the evergreen Fiasco, the locally designed but internationally beloved Microscope and the just-in-time-for-Halloween, Jenga-based horror classic you’ve always meant to try but haven’t yet, Dread;

dread

but also some exciting new stuff like the Burning Wheel Codex, Fairie Skies and Fantasy Friends from Star Line Publishing, the same people who brought you Maid: The RPG, yes, that one.

Most exciting of all for me, though, was the inclusion of the greatest game I never knew I was looking for, Spirit of ’77.

spirit-3

Yes, those lunatics over at Monkeyfun Studios used some sort of strange retro technology to hack into my dreams…

…and discover just how quickly I could become horribly addicted to this high power, apocalypse-engine-driven, grindhouse emulation machine! It drives me mad, mad, you hear me, just talking about it!

I’m also super stoked because this indie RPG shipment is just the beginning of a massive reboot of our entire RPG section, the next phase of which will be a big restock of P3 paint and sculpting supplies and, shortly thereafter, a big restock of both painted and unpainted minis to finally get us fully back into this here RPG retailing game!

So whether you’re the fringest of story gamers or the most most mainstream of classic fantasy roleplayers, newb or grognard, come and down and check out what we have in store for you this week and all this month. We’re confident that you’ll be thrilled that you did and are going to be working hard to ensure that you are.

See you soon,

-Eric

June 30, 2013 / by admin

A Preface

What’s cooler than going to the gym? Swordfighting. What’s cooler than reading up on what gear you need to most efficiently up your DPS in PvP? Being outside. What’s cooler than watching Game of Thrones? Well, not too much really (haha, Red Wedding). What is really cool (but also dorky, which is okay because everyone around is also doing it)? LARPing. Yes, it is totally nerdy, but it’s still cooler and more fun than not LARPing. Don’t knock it until you try it.


I mean, come on, this is badass.

Seattle hosts a fine LARP/Medieval Combat Society/Wargame/Sport via Dargarth where you are the hero. You get to crush baddies (your friends) and revel in the real-life feels of victory. What’s cooler than button mashing to slay goblins? Physically hitting grown adults that are acting like goblins with foam swords. I promise. Dargarth hosts a reasonable set of rules developed by a former Darkonian, Count Andor.  You can even spot him in the incredible documentary for a second. Not only do fighters battle each other over fictional hexes of land for the good of their countries, but players engage in active and enriching role-play through their characters molding and forming the lore and realm around them. Plus, currently The Explorers Guild and The Holy Order of Mârdûr are engaged in the very first war of the realm and my character, Witchbane Cragon, is leading the first Dargarthian Inquisition!

Dargarth at this year’s All’s Faire.

I suppose no one can be expected to care about all this, but if interested you can refer to the schedule or check the Facebook page. Even if hitting people with foam weapons isn’t your idea of a fun Sunday, watching other people hit people with foam weapons and engage in jolly cooperation is fun too, again I promise.

A Gay Olde Tyme

With the preface and plug out of the way, Dargarth is going to be having their Summer Fundraiser at Volunteer Park this Pride Sunday and the Raygun Lounge is excited as can be to host (and sponsor) the Afterparty! Expect to see proud LARPers in garb guzzling mead and overflowing with personality and reasonable eloquence (hic) spouting off about Malum (The Blood Goddess) knows what. Collectively, we will be raffling off garb, armor, and other various LARPing paraphernalia as well as some Raygun swag both at the Volunteer Park event and at the Afterparty at the Lounge.

Alongside of what other proud and gay olde tymes happen to be going on this weekend, we urge you to stop on by, drink some grog and play with us this weekend.

September 19, 2012 / by Eric

One of the main things that I’ve learned to love about roleplaying games is sub-optimal decision making. Because while, yes, you could form a perfectly executed plan utilizing all of your team’s key bonuses and attributes and attack your enemy from a 45 degree angle perfecting the flanking move you’ve been leveling towards for the past 6 months, you could also take your younger brother’s suggestion, dress up like goats and try to infiltrate the local Shepherd Association’s Druid Circle festival to learn about the secret entrance that he’s somehow sure that they’re going to know about.

Now, I don’t know about you, but, as a viewer, I’m going to vote goats. Which scene in the Schwarzenegger Conan film do you remember? The one where he fought and killed that giant snake? Or the one where he punched out the camel? The camel! You know it’s the camel. That and maybe when he threw that naked witch in the fire. Not the choreographed fight scenes which, supposedly, were the important parts. Hell, those unexpected side moments are what the only roleplaying game ever to be featured on Wil Wheaton’s Tabletop is all about.


Fiasco, ladies and gentlemen, the Cohen Brothers-esque game of “high ambition and poor impulse control.”

I’m reminded of my love of intentionally sub-optimal decision making by two things this week.

First, by one of the Kickstarter-pledge-fulfillment roleplaying campaigns that I started on Sunday. When I wrote that pledge level in, I was afraid that I was going to get roped into running a very by-the-numbers high fantasy game about a quest for a ring. Oh, sorry, I meant a sword. Or something… I could never have even dared to conceive that I would be given the opportunity to run an Apocalypse World campaign about a traveling carnival of firebreathing androgynous transgendered sex cultists. That freakishly amazing campaign concept sprung whole cloth out of the players’ commitment to let one player choose all of their characters for them based on “whatever he thought would make them most uncomfortable.” While credit for this unique and memorable experience is certainly due in no small part to Vincent Baker’s brilliant game

I mean, just look at thing. Even in its natural environment it just oozes freaky.

it was really the players’ commitment to not just participate but revel in a sub-optimal decision making process that created us an amazing cast and setting that are going to be easy to have tons of fun rollicking through together.

And secondly, when I realized that I’d misunderstood the King County Health Department’s venue licensing guidelines and that I wasn’t going to be able to unveil my new hot food menu this Thursday. I’ve got a great menu lined up for you with a range of fun, tasty, easy to prepare items that are going to look great on our over-the-top square plates and before I can serve them to you, I have to go put on my goatskin and go punch out a camel.

Are we still opening? Hell yes. Let’s do this thing. Will there be a full bar? There won’t even be a kitchen. At least not one that I can legally serve you food out of. But let’s open doors anyways. Let’s do it sub-optimally and just see what happens. Because I know how Disney does it. I know how the Cheesecake Factory does it. And they’re boring. They cardboard the windows to ensure that you never see their laborers, they insure their insurance. But you, you lucky devil you, you get the full deal that I always promised. I’m building the place. I’m building it three steps forward and one step to the right with an occasional jump to the left.

Oh yeah. Are you feeling that?

And I’m bringing you along for the ride. Will it be bumpy? I hope so. Otherwise I’m going to look ridiculous in this goatskin.

mmm. fresh chupacabra.

We open doors this Thursday with what we’ve got. Amenities ranging from credit card processing to an accurate public calendar will follow as fast as they can and as slow as they do. I still project that we’ll be done with the place in about three years. Was this the most direct route that we could have taken to get here? No. We could have spent a lot more time talking to banks and a lot less time talking to you. I hope that you appreciate our choice to share with you our highly public and, at times, sub-optimal decision-making as much as we enjoy ongoingly making it.

I’ll see you at the lounge,

-Eric

August 04, 2012 / by Eric

A startling expose by game store owner Eric Logan.

Tabletop gaming encompasses a surprisingly wide range of genres including (but certainly not limited to) European style boardgames, American style boardgames, party games, mystery games, cooperative semi-cooperative and one versus many games, classic games and ancient games, abstract games, train games, war games of numerous complexity levels each with their own devoted fanbase, simulations of various kinds from historical to fantasy, custom dice games, collectible miniature and collectible card games, roleplaying and story games. Each of these genres can be further divided into multiple sub-genres and some of these sub-genres, like Dungeons & Dragons and Magic the Gathering, are so large and popular that they’ve become full genres in their own rights with even further sub-genres unto themselves. Dungeons & Dragons alone, for example, has at least 6 different editions and multiple retro knock offs, all of which have their own unique audiences and Magic the Gathering has a number of different formats and rule sets each drawing a different type of player.

Every tabletop gamer, even the most well rounded (like all of our employees), has a bias towards a particular game or type of game; usually something from their past, some initial gateway game or genre that they will inevitably tend to compare other games to and gravitate back to even as they expand their gaming interests.

My personal bias is toward roleplaying games (commonly abbreviated as RPGs). I got started on Advanced Dungeons & Dragons with my dad when I was 8 years old

and have enjoyed exploring new roleplaying systems ever since. Though I’m familiar with and enjoy playing every type of game that we carry at Gamma Ray Games, my inclination is always toward the new small press RPGs.

And so it was that 2 weeks ago while I was rapidly putting together our Kickstarter page for a space that I knew was going to freely support all of the myriad types of tabletop gaming as well as some non tabletop activities like trivia nights, Barcraft and possibly a even a recently proposed rockband karaoke event, I reached out to the indie RPG community for pledge reward commitments first because I knew from our history of collaborating together for events like PAX, Emerald City Comic Con & GoPlayNW that they would respond quickly and be great to work with. And indeed they were.

But bias has consequences and while monitoring our kickstarter progress for the past couple of weeks I’ve discovered two. First, I’ve received a couple of emails from people who saw our kickstarter page and we’re worried that we intend to exclude/ignore their aspect of the hobby, to which I always respond with a clear and sincere “woops! my bad! we’re totally into your thing too,” because I know that the store and the lounge have been and will continue to be about the greater tabletop gaming community of which I and my personal biases are only one small part.

Second, and possibly more importantly from a Huttese perspective, it’s occurred to me that not having more non-rpg gaming options may have limited some peoples willingness to pledge and that, of course, is a barrier that we simply cannot have. In response I’ve just added the new completely-non-roleplaying-related “boardgame night with Jake Waltier” pledge level for you and your friends. And a… (cough) uh, couple of, uh, new RPG levels as well (cough).

Look, the new RPG rewards weren’t my fault, alright? The Gamer Viceroy came by demanding to know why he’d been snubbed out of the reward levels and, seriously now, you don’t want me to snub the viceroy do you? No, I didn’t think so. The man’s a legend in this town.

So there you have it. I love me some RPGs but you can love you some of whatever you want, and if that something happens to be some kind of tabletop gaming, it will always have a home at The Raygun Lounge.

I can’t wait to see you all there,

-Eric

July 25, 2012 / by Eric

We all have things we think about and say, “wouldn’t it be great if…” But then whatever you said seems so ridiculous that you never bother actually pursuing it. Not big things – like running for President or directing a feature film – but the little, silly things like teaching a course on 80s cartoons. Could you teach a course on 80s cartoons? You probably could. Would it be great? Oh, totally! But it wouldn’t likely be the focus of anyone’s life, it would just be a fantastically fulfilled “wouldn’t it be great if” opportunity. You know, like those things you talk about when you’re drunk at parties but never actually get around to doing because it doesn’t really warrant the effort. But still, it would be cool if it really happened.

Strangely, opening a game store was never a “wouldn’t it be great if” for me. Even at the height of my gaming (and I’ve actually had a couple of heights now) it never crossed my mind. I love that I did it and I love my job and I love many of the things it lets and occasionally requires me to do but opening a game store, for me, isn’t the fulfillment of one of my giddy thoughts. It’s something else. And I’m aware of this now because I recently got to fulfill on one of my “wouldn’t it be great ifs” and it is, indeed, a very unique and wonderful feeling.

When I was in my mid-twenties or so, I would think, very passingly, in between my raucous substance-fueled debauchery, “If running roleplaying games were a job, I’d be great at it. Wouldn’t it be great if it was my job to run roleplaying games?” But it was a silly thought so I never pursued it. I mean, really. Paid to run games? That seemed like such a silly thing. So I’d completely forgotten about it and the emotions attached to it when I was quickly crafting our Kickstarter Pledge Rewards last week. We had a long list and it was a very fast, very focused process to brainstorm, pare down, propose, review, write and submit descriptions. Very fast.

When I wrote down that I’d be willing to run some roleplaying games it was pretty much just a mechanical process. What resources do we have? We have me. Great. What could I do? I could run some roleplaying games. I’m really good at that. Great. Stick that in there. What’s next? I was so busy I really didn’t even think about it.

And then two different people selected roleplaying with me as their Kickstarter pledge reward this week. When these individuals claim their reward it will be my job to run a roleplaying game for them. And all of a sudden, I live in another world. A different world where people get to do things just because it would be great if. I am so thankful to those two people who have accidentally given me the opportunity to experience this amazing feeling of having a “wouldn’t it be great if” come true. It’s profoundly moving in ways I never would have expected it to be.

Thank you.

Now I just need to start developing some adventures…

Wait. You didn’t think I was going to run straight fantasy did you?

See you all again soon,

-Eric