Two brothers opened The Dragon’s Hoard, a game shop full of RPGs, cards and board games.
Legends have been foretold, where dragons filled with greed collected treasures across the land and hoarded them in their caves. Moonlight would trickle in through the cave ceiling, sparkling and reflecting off of the gold trinkets, a rainbow light dancing on the cave wall.
At The Dragon’s Hoard, the treasure the beast protects is not of gold, pearls and rubies. What the dragon guards is a collection of cards, Role Playing Games and board games.
Just off of eighth St. and Main Avenue, The Dragon’s Hoard is a family owned gaming business by two brothers, Alex and Jordan Tepley. The brothers opened the store in October in hopes of sharing their passion for gaming.
However, despite their past in gaming, the store was not originally the brothers’ idea.
“It was actually suggested by our father, but we both love games and thought, why not,” Jordan said. “Alex specializes in RPGs and board games and I specialize in card games. So, we kind of get two halves of the whole.”
Jordan and Alex jump-started the business this past summer and planned on opening in September, but an old building and an abandoned space presented a few hiccups down the road.
“We had a couple of hiccups with the building and getting fixtures and stuff. A bunch of stuff happened with the building. This middle section sat for seven or eight months [before we moved in],” Jordan said, referring to the space the game store occupies in the building.
Fixing the building was not the only challenge the brothers faced. In their 20s, Jordan and Alex jumped into this adventure without any business experience.
“We both don’t know anything about business,” Jordan said. “That has been the real journey — kind of figuring out what we have to do as far as keeping up the building, filing taxes and that stuff.”
Luckily, their father has been a great resource, being an owner of a few businesses of his own.
Despite the delayed opening, Jordan and Alex were able to successfully start their business and provide a variety of merchandise for passionate gamers and people new to the realm of gaming to choose from. According to Jordan, The Dragon’s Hoard supplies miniatures and paint, “specialty” board games, a variety of card games and accessories, such as dice, playmats, binders and deck boxes.
Before starting their own business, the brothers had a past of gaming among friends.
“I am the biggest fan of tabletop RPGs,” Alex said. “I didn’t play them for the longest time and I never thought I would be into them, but with the creative freedom and storytelling elements. … I realize I really do enjoy them. Especially the more complicated ones.”
Although Jordan has done some RPGs himself, he has mostly spent his gaming days playing cards.
“I played Magic on and off for half my life and I learned to play new ones like Force of Will, Pokemon, and even a World of Warcraft card game for a while,” Jordan said.
Along with the endless bounty of games, Jordan and Alex like to provide a space where customers can walk in and get lost in the gaming world. Tables that can seat 60 people are set up in one half of the store where people can play any game they want and let their imagination run wild.
On their Facebook page, The Dragon’s Hoard Gaming Group, they have a loosely set schedule for customers to play a type of game every night of the week for free.
Monday nights are free table day. Customers may walk in, pick an open table and play a card game or board game. Tuesdays and Wednesdays are Dungeons and Dragons and Pathfinder day, two tabletop roleplaying games that require strategy and a lot of imagination. Thursday night is Magic night, a well-known card trading game that can last as long as players are willing to play.
“Last week, I think we were here until midnight,” Jordan said.
Friday nights are board game nights, where customers can play demo copies of games in the store or bring their own, and Saturday is Pokemon League day.
Although the store has only been open for a few months, Alex and Jordan have been able to share their passion with people who appreciate a space to explore, play and build their collection of games.
“For me it is just fun to come to work, even though there are boring menial tasks you have to do,” Jordan said. “It’s still fun to see people buy stuff and talk to people.”
Alex is grateful to be able to go to work, and not feel like it is burden.
It’s a lot of fun talking with people who are getting excited about the various products,” Alex said. “I like being able to come into work and not feel miserable and not dreaded.”
Jordan and Alex are happy to have a gaming store in this community because of the major interest in games and comic cons, which can provide a great customer base for the store.
“It is funny to go to the cons in town and see a super average guy and think, oh he plays games too, that guy is not a mega nerd at all,” Jordan said.
The brothers have had a great start to their business have already gained some regulars, but they are always looking to introduce their world to more people and to broaden their imagination with new perspectives.
“We have empty tables that need to be populated with nerds,” Alex said.
“We love nerds,” Jordan said. “We care and try to do anything anyone wants to do here. We always have something on the TV, or are just hanging out, sitting around. It is a really comfortable, laid back environment.”
For more information on The Dragon’s Hoard and their game schedules, visit their Facebook page, The Dragon’s Hoard Gaming Group. They also have an official website www.thedragonshoardgames.com.