How to Build the Ultimate Gaming Room
For all the kids who had to play the “Battletoads” infamous speeder bike level with the judgemental eyes of siblings watching them, or had to stop their game mid-level because their parents wanted to watch the news, or experience the tragic death of Aerith in “FFVII” with their Mom chatting on the phone in the next room over, a room dedicated to gaming sounds like a dream.
Now you are an adult, and you can do what you want. If you have the space for it, you can totally dedicate an entire room to your favorite hobby. But if you are going to do it, you might as well go big. Instead of just setting up a TV and a couch in the room, make your dream gaming room.
First, Pick the Room’s Purpose
A gaming room can fulfill several purposes, so you need to decide early on what you want it to do before you start buying stuff. The furniture and set up for the room will be very different for a gaming room meant to entertain guests than one meant just for solo enjoyment.
Other decisions that need to be made early on is if the gaming room is only for video games, or will you include board or miniature games too? Will it also be where you read comics/manga too? Are there other hobbies you want to include in the room? Will it also serve as a general entertainment room, like for watching movies with friends and family? All of these choices will influence what goes into your perfect game room.
Choose a Theme You Love
The difference between a good gaming room and the ultimate gaming room is having a theme. Having a themed room can be a huge talking point with guests, and make your gaming experience much more enjoyable.
A good place to start is looking for inspiration online for rad theme rooms, ranging from a “Star Trek” home theater to building your very own Batcave. While you don’t need to go as extreme as many of those online, a good theme can give you direction on decoration. You could pick your favorite franchise or game and build your room around it.
A good theme doesn’t even require a direct connection to a single specific game or movie. Want to build a dystopian future room? You could pull influences from things like the “Hunger Games,” “Fallout,” “Deus Ex,” “Bioshock” and more. Or, your theme might not even directly connect to a series, just a general idea, like Neon or classic movie theater. The affect you want though, is when people walk in, they go “Whoa!”
Picking the Right Lighting
It might not be something you first think of when dreaming up your ideal game room, but having the right lighting can play a huge part in how nice your room looks. If your theme is outer space, including black walls covered in stars, only to then turn on some harsh fluorescent lighting that ruins the whole mood, you’ll be unhappy.
Find lighting that matches both the theme and purpose of the room. If you’re going to be playing board games with friends there, you’ll want brighter lighting than you would want for a personal movie theater. Got a rad “Lord of the Rings” theme? Put your lighting in wall mounted torches. Going for a cyberpunk look? Get tons of neon lights to match the mood.
If you plan on spending massive amounts in your game room, away from the harsh but healthy sun, you need to consider how that might affect your health. Seasonal Affective Disorder can do major mental and emotional damage to gamers who stay inside all day, so maybe consider getting some lighting in your room to help out with that. Daylight full spectrum bulbs could hang over your “battlestation” or just be in a special lamp to give you the feeling of daylight on your skin.
TV, Sound System and Sound Proofing
Now, you need to pick the key part to any gaming room, the TV. Bigger doesn’t always mean better when it comes to TV, and you want the best one for your situation.
If your room revolves around gaming on a PC or being close to the screen, you probably won’t want a massive screen, but maybe one that does 4K or UHD. On the other hand, if it doubles as a home theater, a huge screen could be perfect. Just be aware that some massive screens, like an 80 inch TV, don’t look very good with 720p or 1080p resolutions. That means if you play a normal DVD on it, it likely won’t look very good at such a large scale. If you are considering a projector instead of a smart TV, consider that you will need to buy replacement bulbs in the future, and if your room has any natural lighting, the picture won’t be very clear.
You’ll also need to consider your sound situation. A home theatre is deserving of theater sound, meaning surround sound. If sound isn’t as important, you might just consider a nice soundbar, or if you play a lot of online gaming requiring voice chat, a really nice headset might fit your needs.
If you do opt for an excessive sound system, or you live in a noisy home, soundproofing could be the cherry on top your room need. Nothing wakes up the house like watching Transformers late at night at full volume. Similarly, nothing ruins a touching moment like a crying baby in the background. Minimal sound proofing isn’t that hard or expensive, but could make a huge difference in your experience.
Make it Look Nice and Comfortable
Nothing is worse than a poorly crafted gaming room. If you are going to do it, really dedicate yourself to it. Make sure you have the time and resources to really make it look nice. Nothing ruins a room quicker than a half finished dragon mural on a wall surrounded by trash and mismatching furniture. If you don’t have the ability to make a super amazing game room, go with a simple theme and just make it look nice. Paint the walls a nice color, hang up some cool framed posters, and maybe a shelf to display some cool collectables.
Don’t forget to also think about the comfort factor to your game room. If your room looks amazing but the chairs are uncomfortable, you won’t want to spend long periods of time there. Get the right chairs for your set up, whether that’s a nice office chair at a battle station or the perfectly fluffy couch for lounging and gaming. Other comforts you might want include a mini-fridge filled with delicious snacks and drinks, and the means to keep you warm or cold depending on the season.