'Game Garden' Brings Players Outdoors for Board Games and Role-Play Quests

By Nikhita Venugopal on October 3, 2013 8:43am 

CARROLL GARDENS — A new “game garden” has opened for this fall as a space for kids and adults to gather, socialize and of course, play games.

The Brooklyn Strategist, an “interactive board- and card-game center, café and social club,” recently opened up their backyard, adding an outdoor element to their 333 Court St. location. 

Jon Freeman, the center’s owner, said they have added eight tables covered with trellises that will soon hold creeping vines and plants.

Stacked against the walls, the center holds dozens of games from classics to role-playing games, like Dungeons & Dragons.

At the Brooklyn Strategist, gamers can pay $10 and spend the next four hours playing any of the center’s collection of games with staffers on hand to guide players on rules.

The Strategist’s after-school club, their most popular program, is uniquely structured through 10 game genres, including “Ancient Strategy Games,” “Empire Building and Civilization Games,” “Sporting Games,” “Brain Benders” that teaches Mensa-select games and more, said Freeman.

Over 12 weeks, students move from the simplest to most complex games in a particular genre, say “Ancient Strategy Games” that includes chess, dominos and mahjong, he said.

“It’s really about exposing everyone to a breadth of experiences,” said Freeman, who lives in Cobble Hill.

When Freeman first opened the Brooklyn Strategist on Court Street, he found the neighborhood to be lacking “a phenomenal social space,” where locals of all ages could meet, he said, adding that the center also hosts community-based benefits and fundraisers.

“The intent has always been to serve the community in all capacities,” said Freeman.

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