Justin McVay and his wife Nina Gucciardo are up for adventure. In mid-November, they invited others to join by opening the doors on a new store focused on role-playing games.
The husband-wife team opened Manafold Games
in mid-November after investing their savings and a month of sweat equity into refurbishing an older storefront. Customers entering the shop at 115 W. Grand River in downtown Williamston are greeted by freshly painted blue walls, a silver floor, and a series of shelves alternating with white pillars. Reclaimed glass cabinets, an exposed brick wall exhibiting local artists, and tables and chairs round out the atmosphere of the 1,300-square foot shop designed both for retail and as a social hub for the board and card gaming community.
"Our goal is to be a community center as much as a friendly game store," says McVay. "We're modeling ourselves on successful game stores like the Vault of Midnight
in Grand Rapids and Ann Arbor. They have a very bright atmosphere that's friendly to the average consumer."
Manafold will stock an inventory of popular contemporary board and role-playing games including the Dead of Winter, the Legend of Zelda Monopoly, Game of Thrones Clue and some classic vintage games. The shop will also host drop-in events for role-playing games like Dungeons and Dragons, collectable card games like Pokemon and Yu-Gi-Oh!, and unofficial Magic the Gathering nights. In time, McVay says he hopes to have tournaments, with registration taken in advance. He also hopes to branch into starting a euchre league in the coming year.
"I've been wanting to open a game store for about 10 years," says McVay. "I like games mostly because of the art, and also because of the empathy and competitive aspects. A really good game outlines all of human nature. You can learn very quickly about people by playing games."
Source: Justin McVay, Owner, Manafold Games
Writer: Ann Kammerer, News Editor
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