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Gamers unite!

Good Game lures gamers out from obscurity



- PAY TO PLAY :  David Larson figured out how to make a business out of providing reclusive gamers with a communal venue. -  - PHOTO BY STEVE E. MILLER
  • PAY TO PLAY : David Larson figured out how to make a business out of providing reclusive gamers with a communal venue.

Good Game recently opened a new location in downtown San Luis Obispo and is striving to bring local online gamers out of isolation and into a more social, competitive gaming environment. Basking in the glow of supersized computer monitors, row upon row of online gamers sit with headsets firmly attached to their crowns, grinning ear to ear as their fingers shuffle around on the keyboard controls. Upon entering Good Game, you might think you’re in a NASA control room, but in actuality, it’s a gamer’s paradise.

Owner David Larson came up with the concept of Good Game at an early age, after he linked a couple of computers together in his parents’ house so he and his friends could play his favorite multiplayer game at the time, Descent. After seeing how much fun his friends were having, Larson said, “one day it just dawned on me that this could be turned into a business.” A short time later, he began to draw up a business plan to put his dream in motion.

Good Game boasts 50 high-performance computers (Larson refers to them as “rigs”) linked to one another in a network and each loaded with a plethora of games. The task of finding the right computers for his high-tech gaming lounge proved to be a challenge, with the leading factor being the rapid advancement of computer technology. According to Larson, “The whole architecture of computers has changed in recent years.” He needed to find machines that could “play all the latest games at max resolution and at the highest detail.” Tapping into his knowledge of both computers and gaming, Larson was able to build his computers in a manner fit for large-scale online multiplayer games as well as high-speed web browsing.

Good Game offers the latest and most popular computer games—such as Call of Duty: Black Ops—and hundreds of “legacy” games from the past. Reveling in the competitive aspect of gaming, the shop frequently hosts gaming tournaments, with a variety of prizes going to the winners: computer hardware, T-shirts, and posters. The shop showcases games as well, allowing customers one free hour to test out the latest releases and give feedback.

Instead of dealing with pesky membership fees, Good Game charges by the hour; all you need is a username to access your account. When you log out at the end of your session, the time left over is saved for you to use whenever you want, so you don’t need to worry about scheduling your day around the time you spend there. Simple Internet meandering, as well as Skype, word processing, and printing services are also available.

Good Game is open seven days a week from noon to midnight at 883 Marsh St. in San Luis Obispo. Check out or for more information and a list of upcoming events.

Fast facts

In support of Central Coast Paramedic Education, the Christopher Meadows Paramedic Fund will present its second annual wine tasting and auction on May 14 from 3 to 6 p.m. at Embassy Suites in San Luis Obispo. Tickets cost $25 in advance and $30 dollars at the door, with all proceeds benefiting paramedic school scholarships. Register online at …

McGauhey Chiropractic will hold a Women’s Health Symposium and Natural Health Fair on May 12 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the pavilion on the lake at Atascadero Lake Park. The symposium will cover such topics as thyroid disorder awareness, preventing and treating osteoporosis, understanding women’s hormone imbalances, and thermography vs. mammography. For more information or to RSVP, call 461-8822. …

A 5k-community walk benefiting Congregation Beth David of San Luis Obispo and CAPSLO Homeless Services is May 15, beginning at 11 a.m. at Laguna Lake Park. The walk includes a free event T-shirt for all participants, as well as a free lunch for those who register by May 2. Registration fee is $36 for ages 13 and older, $18 for walkers 6 to 12, and free for kids 5 and younger. For more information, call 544-0760 or visit

Intern Jack Johnson compiled this week’s Strokes and Plugs. Send your business news to


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