While it’s easy for gamers to get swept up in the gloss and glamour of video games, and all of their multi-million dollar spectacle, there’s still a lot to value in the old-school roots. When most people think of board games, they’re whisked back to drawn-out games of Monopoly and checkers participated in against their will at Grandma’s house. But tabletop gaming has become so much more, with complex games of strategy and skill to unite friends new and old in ruthless competition.

But it’s not always easy to find people to gather around a table for a game or two. Because people are often lame and don’t understand how fun moving around cards and pieces of plastic on top of a large cardboard rectangle can be, you might not have enough bodies for that ruthless 6-dictator Risk deathmatch you’ve always dreamed of. Fortunately, Eugene is rich with like-minded souls, ready to throw down.

Funagain Games, located at 1280 Willamette St., is a Eugene staple that hosts Open Board Game nights every Tuesday and Thursday until 11 p.m.

“It’s very casual. People come, talk a bit and find a game to play together.” Chris Wuebbles, a Funagain employee, said. @@name checked on facebook also called and left a [email protected]@

If pen and paper role playing is your cup of tea, they also host a society for Pathfinder: a persistent fantasy campaign with multiple factions and motivations on Friday nights. Or if you’re more dedicated to the world of Magic The Gathering, join them for Friday Night Magic and drafts on Saturday afternoons.

For those who wish to wash down their gaming with a cold brew, Funagain Games also hosts an open play night at The Barn Light, located on 924 Willamette St. All games are welcome, though Settlers of Catan is a house favorite. (Because intoxication will make it so much easier to negotiate trade deals). Every Monday at 7 p.m. join a growing crew of regulars to usher in the new week with a game or two.

Evolution Games, located on 2475 Hilyard St., is another game-playing venue. It’s always a risky situation finding a new game to get into. It can be so difficult to know if a game is worth your hard-earned cash without giving it a try for yourself. So, if you’re contemplating a new purchase, you can stop by Evolution Games on Tuesday nights for their open board game nights.

“We’ve got a regular crowd, but it’s always available to the public. It’s a great way to try new things, or bring in one of your own favorites to play.” Eric Smith, an Evolution Games employee, said. @@checked name with co-worker, the story is to publish at 4 p.m. but maybe next copy editor can call around 6 and read quote [email protected]@

Regardless of what — or where — you play, public board game nights are a great way to meet some new people in Eugene. These games have the power to bring people together and unite them towards a singular interest. Whether you’re a seasoned veteran of every game under the sun, or a newbie looking to pick up a new hobby, these nights are worth your attention.

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