Vigilante wants to bring gaming, drinking, and socializing all together by opening a bar and restaurant built for board gamers by board gamers in Midtown Commons in Crestview. One of the co-founders, Preston Swincher, who is also CEO, explained, "We’re trying to really elevate the gaming in public experience into something new that it’s never really been before." He added that eating, drinking, and gaming are all "social experiences."
The highlight of the bar will be the fully customized tables made just for board gamers. Food and drinks can be placed on roll-out trays and cup holders so spills and messes are avoided. Plus, there are outlets, wifi, and even ethernet cable capabilities. Other features include a call for service button, and another button to raise a flag, indicating the table is looking for more players.
Before embarking on thoughtfully designing the space, the group released an extensive 10-15 minute survey to find what people really wanted from a board game bar, which was the "driving design force behind our big choices," Swincher explained. This led to healthier food options and offering non-messy dishes, which makes gaming cleaner. Future patrons wanted a place with a dimmer bar atmosphere but well-lit gaming tables. To solve that, the team placed track lighting that points straight onto the table, which is also stained with a non-reflective material.
There will be anywhere between 100 to 150 game titles available, all repackaged and placed in protective coverings so everything is easier to handle. Look out for classic games like Scrabble, chess, Catan, Cards Against Humanity, and others, including rarer ones. There will also be shorter social games. Guests are allowed to bring their personal sets, too.
Every dish on the menu can be "eaten cleanly with one hand," like sliders instead of big burgers. Around 12 to 14 local Austin beers will be available at the bar, including Friends & Allies and Thirsty Goat.
Vigilante will have four different areas: the social lounge, made perfect for those quick games, with comfortable seating like couches. The general dining room will hold those custom gaming tables, and the bar area with ten to 12 seats. The two private dining rooms will be housed behind secret bookcase doors. Reservations for tables and games can be made. There will host plenty of events, from massive Dungeons and Dragons sessions, James Bond-themed poker nights, murder mysteries, and more.
The group is launching a Kickstarter
soon Update, February 26: now live, to help raise more money for construction. If that goes well, they’re thinking of adding a mezzanine with more seats. Vigilante is projected to open by August.