The Definitive Guide to Gaming Stores in Louisville: The Finale!

The Definitive Guide to Gaming Stores in Louisville: The Finale!

by Andy B; photographs and map illustrations by Andy B.

The directors of Nerd Louisville conceived the idea of a “Guide to Louisville Gaming Shops.” The original intent was for this guide to be a single feature article.  As I set out to research the guide, I realized that this project is too big for a single article. There are at least a dozen gaming shops – maybe more. Instead, I will write multiple installments with a final summary at the end.

The purpose of this guide is to help nerds living in, or visiting, Louisville to find the shops that fit their interests – not just in terms of products, but also their preferred age group, playing style, and atmosphere. The intent is to promote all gaming shops in the city, not to rate them or criticize.

The information in this guide was researched in late 2015. This guide will not provide opening and closing times, since they sometimes change. We wouldn’t want you to plan your visit based on this guide if a store changes its hours. For store hours, check each store’s website or Facebook page (links provided).

As noted, this is Part Five of a multi-part series. Check out Parts 1-5 if you missed them.

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At long last, I can stick a fork in this game shop guide assignment. I have explored every game shop in Jefferson County, and a few that are in adjacent counties a short drive away. Until another game shop opens or you find one that I missed, I am declaring victory in this catalog of Louisville game shops. In this final chapter I visit Silver Creek Game Shop and update major changes for two shops I visited earlier: Role of the Die and Parallel Worlds.

Silver Creek Game Shop

I had no intention of visiting this shop because I considered it too far away to include in a list of Louisville Game Shops. Then Jesse Rasmussen, Nerd Louisville’s Hoosier Advocate, talked me into it. So after taking some lonely roads through the wilderness, I find myself in Sellersburg, Indiana. Is Sellersburg in Louisville? Really? I guess there is no point in arguing further as I am here already.

  • Address: 947 S Indiana Ave (Sellersburg, Ind.)
  • Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SilverCreekGameShop/
  • History: Owner Josh Caldwell opened Silver Creek Game Shop on December 1st, 2012 and they have remained in the same shopping center ever since
  • Gaming Area: 13 tables with 64 seats
  • Crowd: About a dozen gamers on a Saturday evening
  • Parking: Located in the Silver Creek Plaza Shopping Center, with lots of parking
  • Nearest drink: “It burned down” – that’s what Josh told me when I asked; The Silver Creek Lanes bowling alley, with a bar, was at the end of the same shopping center until it was destroyed by fire and now there isn’t another drinking place nearby

It was a dark Saturday evening and foggy as a werewolf movie when I arrived at Silver Creek Game Shop. That didn’t discourage a dozen or so stalwart gamers from showing up to play collectible card games. Owner, Josh Caldwell, was on hand and his young son, Ethan, was hanging out behind the counter with him. This highlighted one of the distinguishing features of Silver Creek Game Shop: it is very family friendly. Josh brings Ethan along to the shop often and wants everything in the shop to be appropriate for Ethan and other younger kids. Perhaps you are the mom of a young Magic player and perhaps you found this guide after fleeing another Southern Indiana game shop that was full of foul language and hard drinking. In that case, you should try Silver Creek Game Shop. You could have avoided family trauma if you had just checked Nerd Louisville first. Let that be a lesson to you, hypothetical mom.

Silver Creek is primarily a Magic: The Gathering store. They also host Warhammer games and have some terrain models on hand. There is a display of Games Workshop merchandise, and a full stand of Citadel miniature paints. Josh characterizes his core clientelle as competitive Magic players with a laid back attitude. Most of their tournaments are in the standard format.  The store sells cold sodas and for food there is Mazarella’s Pizza two doors down in the same shopping center.

Return to Role of the Die

As I foretold in my previous description of Role of the Die, the store has moved two miles down Bardstown Road. It is now just a couple of blocks north of the Watterson Expressway.

  • Address: 2902 Bardstown Road
  • Website: http://roleofthedie.net/
  • Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Role-of-the-Die-178709688808097/
  • History: Founded in 2008; purchased in 2014 by the new owner, Michael; moved to new location in December 2015
  • Gaming Area: One large permanent table, with room for two additional tables on demand; all three tables were in use when I ran a Call of Cthulhu game there on the Saturday after New Year’s
  • Crowd: Three full gaming groups on the Saturday after New Year’s; I was running a Call of Cthulhu game, another group was playing Dungeons & Dragons, and the group at the third table was playing a board game
  • Parking: Now, much easier than the previous location; the store is in a small shopping center with forty parking places shared with a few other small businesses and there are other parking lots in walking distance
  • Nearest drink: This shop is no longer surrounded by bars, but all is not lost: there is a bar in the El Nopal restaurant in the Gardiner Lane Shopping Center, just on the other side of the Krispy Kreme; when my buddy, John, and I stopped in for a drink after our Call of Cthulhu game, we ran into some other Role of the Die customers who beat us there

It only took Michael’s team one day to move his shop to the new location at the beginning of December. It is the same square footage as their old location but Michael is more pleased with the layout. To recap for those who don’t recall my earlier description in the third episode of this guide, Role of the Die sells both comics and games. The owner and his regular customers are devoted fans of 4th edition Dungeons and Dragons. If you are a 4E player, this is the shop for you.

The comics and merchandise are much the same as the old location, although there is a new display of Wiz Dice polyhedral gaming dice sets. The new venue doesn’t have the old store’s Star Trek captain’s chair but the front door still makes the sliding door sound effect. Michael has been a great host for our Saturday Call of Cthulhu games at the new site, so Role of the Die has my endorsement. Overall, the new location for Role of the Die is quieter and more suburban than the previous spot in the heart of the Bardstown Road nightlife strip. They no longer have to deal with drunken revelers wandering in, except perhaps for me I guess.

Parallel Worlds Between Worlds

 

In October, the owner of Parallel Worlds announced that they would be closing and moving to a new location. In December, he posted on Facebook that Parallel Worlds would remain closed indefinitely. Here is the unedited Facebook post:

An address of the status of PWG by Randall Lee Daniel, owner.

Parallel Worlds Gaming will not be reopening on any schedule that I can determine at this juncture. Although I have full intent to spend my life as a card shop owner and will in fact reopen in the future, be it under the banner of PWG or otherwise. I will however have a very much different shop, modeled more so the way I intended it from the start. I apologize for the delays of reopening and the delays of this address. My decision to further suspend the reopen merits two main causes.

Firstly, the shop was never what it should have been. I purchased a shop that was not as intended and while I have invested the last year of my life and a large amount of money fighting an uphill battle to fix this fact, I have made limited head way. I have determined that I would prefer to fix the underlying issues before reentering the situation. By operating without a physical location I have lowered my overhead dramatically and will be able to hold better profit margins allowing me to settle due accounts in a more timely manner. The second and main reason being personal and not warranting public explanation.

In regards to accounts due, debts owed or other financial concerns voiced by customers, I will work as swiftly as I can to raise capital to repay any in-store credit or otherwise owed debts. Message me personally on here to address these issues, link below.

For any party requesting additional information I will provide it upon personal request at my leisure, as I am busy resolving my issues surrounding this change in both my personal and professional life. I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, may your Holidays be marry and all of that other jazz.

https://www.facebook.com/randall.daniel.10

I contacted Randall and asked him if he wanted to add anything for this Game Store Guide. We met to talk over drinks at Kaiju in Germantown on New Year’s Day. Randall explained that he wasn’t happy with the location of Parallel Worlds, which he inherited. He said he made a deal with the owners of the shopping center, who wanted his location in order to expand the store next door. He said he still has a huge inventory of Magic cards that he is selling online through TCGPlayer and Ebay. As Randall explains it, he still has roughly the same amount of sales, but without the overhead of the physical store, although he really misses the social aspect of running a game shop. His said his house is filled with display cases and other inventory from the store.

“My heating bill for this winter should be pretty low, thanks to the insulation I’ve got from boxes and boxes of Magic cards stacked against all the walls of my house” he joked.

Randall asked me to emphasize that anyone who had store credit from Parallel Worlds should contact him through Facebook. Randall said he is considering plans for a new shop or other gaming enterprise. We discussed his plans for a new style of LARP (Live Action Role Playing) and other gaming ideas he is pondering. He told me some crazy stories about running a LARP group in Shepherdsville when he was a teenager. It’s always interesting to talk about gaming with Randall and I’m curious to find out what he tries next.

This concludes our tour of the gaming stores in Louisville until I hear about any new shops in town. I’ve learned quite a bit from researching these shops – mostly that Louisville is pretty damned nerdy. I hope that you have found the guide worthwhile.

Game on, nerds!

The Definitive Guide to Gaming Stores in Louisville will be a multi-part series of Nerd Louisville articles until all the gaming stores in Louisville are included. If you’d like your store to be featured next, please contact us! Please send corrections to andy@nerdlouisville.org

Andy B