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The Match Slip

The Match Slip

By Frank Angelone

Showcasing local game stores and their owners throughout the United States.
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Blade Gaming With General Manager, Mike Hall

The Match SlipJun 05, 2023

Blade Gaming With General Manager, Mike Hall

Blade Gaming With General Manager, Mike Hall

In episode 5 of The Match Slip, we're interviewing the General Manager of Blade Gaming, Mike Hall. Blade Gaming is located in downtown Roanoke, Virginia. In addition to offering players the opportunity to play various tradeable card games and Dungeons & Dragons, they also offer Disc Golf to their players - a unique selling point to the store. With various blades adorned on the walls of the store to custom art by Mike's wife, the store offers a unique experience to new and returning customers.

Mike is the lead buyer of products for the store. His full-time job as a supply chain manager has aided him when it comes to having enough products that customers are looking for. Mike, a former professional Magic: The Gathering player, opts to play casual Commander games these days with his family and when time allows he'll play the occasional competitive event.

Blade Gaming hosts multiple games concurrently each day. Mike credits this feat to the scheduling prowess of his co-worker, Drew, who makes it seamless for players looking to engage with the games they enjoy. With fellow co-worker, Tim Furrow, handling online sales, each employee of Blade Gaming has a specialty resulting in a successful small business that players enjoy coming back to.

If you enjoy this episode, please consider subscribing.

Jun 05, 202352:47
Atlas Games With Joey - Owner, Rick Chong's Right Hand Man

Atlas Games With Joey - Owner, Rick Chong's Right Hand Man

In the fourth episode of The Match Slip, we talk with Joey from Atlas Games located in City of Industry, California based at Frank and Sons. Owner, Rick Chong, described Joey to me as his right-hand man who handles most of the business. Joey has been with Rick from the beginning and handles the Magic: The Gathering card buys and sales. He also builds a lot of Commander decks for customers.

While Atlas Games is not a traditional game store in the sense that they don't have events, they still have a large inventory of Magic: The Gathering cards and have access to almost any card you could need. The store which is located at Booth #438 at Frank and Sons is only open three days a week. However, this is not a decision of Atlas Games and rather when Frank and Sons is open to the public. To compensate, Atlas Games also sells online through TCG Player.

Joey and his fellow employees are all part-time workers and he notes to me that everyone is a utility player at Atlas Games. While Joey has another full-time job, he's been able to utilize his experience with his full-time job and apply it when working at Atlas Games.

Being located in Southern California has led to celebrity interactions with fans and fellow players of the game like Post Malone and Cassius Marsh.

If you enjoy this episode, please consider subscribing.

May 29, 202347:00
Zulus Games With Owner, Matt Zaremba and Food and Beverage Director, Tony Jutt

Zulus Games With Owner, Matt Zaremba and Food and Beverage Director, Tony Jutt

In the third installment of The Match Slip, we had the pleasure of speaking with the Owner of Zulus Games, Matt Zaremba, and the Food and Beverage Director, Tony Jutt. From store theming to a full-fledged restaurant, Zulus Games has a unique selling proposition for the customer base in Bothell, Washington. In the spirit of The Hobbit, Matt knew what the store's theme had to be the moment he walked into the prospective property. He used YouTube to learn how to build the store and bootstrap his business while on a budget. The vision of a board game cafe was achieved and it can host 200 players for events. Matt has three current buildings: the warehouse, the game store, and the events center. If this wasn't enough, they also have a summer camp for kids!

When Tony joined Zulus Games, he expanded the food side of the business. From a player and customer of the store to an employee, Tony enjoys being a part of the Zulus Games family. From chicken strips to burgers to beer - the restaurant is as big of a component of Zulus Games as the game store itself; feeding its players while keeping them entertained in between events. Going from 6 sauces to 23, they have exceeded the food offerings of what you'd expect to find at a local game store. They even have their own hot sauce called Worldfire! Originally from the Midwest in Indiana, Tony sports a culinary background, and the combination of him and Matt provides a unique and expansive experience for customers of Washington state.

If you enjoy this episode, please consider subscribing.

May 15, 202357:30
The Comic Dimension With Co-Owner, Chris Gordon

The Comic Dimension With Co-Owner, Chris Gordon

In the second episode of The Match Slip podcast we're speaking with Co-Owner, Chris Gordon, of The Comic Dimension located in Greensboro, North Carolina. Chris' passion for starting a local game store began with his love of comics. From that point forward, after a discussion with his good friend and Co-Owner Neil, they both decided to open the store. With a focus on the community and putting everything they earn back into the store, The Comic Dimension focuses on quality and serving the customer. While costs play a role in these decisions, Chris shares that his desire to make the store the best it can be. Located in a college town, this Wizards Play Network Premium store is one that is always willing to try something new: whether it is adding new tabletop games for players, expanding upon the 50,000 back-issue comics that are available, or helping out his customer base in ways that extend beyond the store.

Apr 30, 202301:06:42
The Meta Gaming and Esports With Co-Owner, Christopher Fitzpatrick

The Meta Gaming and Esports With Co-Owner, Christopher Fitzpatrick

In the inaugural (relaunch) episode of The Match Slip podcast, we talk with Christopher Fitzpatrick, Co-Owner of The Meta Gaming and Esports (The Meta) located in St. James, NY.

The Meta is my local game store (LGS) and has revitalized my desire to frequently play Magic: The Gathering in person again. While I have played at other LGSs in the past, this is the first LGS that has rekindled that spirit of what it was like playing when I was a teenager.

In this episode, we'll learn about the beginnings of The Meta, their plans for growth, and how they plan their events.
Apr 15, 202301:00:42