Black Diamond Games in Concord, CA

(One of the backer rewards for my Goody White’s Book of Folk Magic kickstarter was for game stories, in which I write an article about their store for my site. Thanks to Gary Ray, owner of Black Diamond Games for answering my questions!)

What’s your store’s name, address, phone number, email, website, and so on?
Black Diamond Games, Ltd.
1950 Market Street, Suite E
Concord, CA 94520

How long has your store been around?
10 Years

How long have you been running a store?
10 Years

What games do you stock?
We’re a “full spectrum” game store with board games, collectible card games, role-playing games, miniature games, and classic games and puzzles.

How knowledgeable are your staff about the games? Are they able to talk about the positive aspects of many games, even games they personally don’t prefer?
They’re fairly knowledgeable about a wide variety of games and often have expertise in one or two categories.
Any other gamer-friendly things you carry, like comics, gaming fiction, dice, movies, anime, or action figures?
We carry every set of Chessex dice, but in a large metropolitan area, we’ve found it’s best to focus just on games.
Do you carry miniatures and miniatures supplies?
We carry Warhammer 40K, Age of Sigmar, Warmachine and Hordes, Reaper, and often a flavor of the month minis game or two, along with D&D and Pathfinder miniatures. We also carry paint supplies: Citadel, P3, Secret Weapon, Vallejo and we recently brought in airbrushes and airbrush supplies.

Are you female-friendly? Gay-friendly? Kid-friendly? Newbie-friendly?
We try to be everyone friendly, including hiring diverse staff who can give us insights we might not have thought of. Our store is clean, well lit, and family friendly.

Do you have space set aside for gaming? Is it set aside from the retail area or in open view? Is it first-come, first-served, or can you reserve the space? Do you have scheduled times for organized play events for D&D, Pathfinder, or other games?
We have 1,000 square feet of dedicated game space separate from the retail area. Events are scheduled every evening until 10pm and occasionally we have free play on less busy weekends. We’re planning to double our gaming space, thanks partly to a Kickstarter that raised $25,000 to help us build a mezzanine level.

Do you sell snacks?
We sell a variety of snacks, with the most popular being Surge and Mexican Coke.

Are you close to other convenient gamer-critical retailers like a pizza place?
We’ve got food options all around us, including fast food, sushi, pizza, Chinese, Korean, and Mediterranean restaurants within a short walk.

Is your store clean?
We try to keep it as clean as possible.

Will you do special orders?
We happily accept special orders and we changed to a sophisticated point of sale system that excels in that area.

What do you do to go out of your way to make gamers feel welcome at your store?
Our trained staff greets every customer who enters and we make sure they’re finding what they need. New customers are shown around and handed flyers for events that interest them.

What events does your store host, and how often?
We host events every night for CCGs, RPGs, miniature games, and board games. Each event has their own evening, with games like Magic getting several.

Are you open to holding special events such as an RPG art exhibit for local artists, or a dinner-game experience?
Those would be great!

Do you have a loyalty program or other incentives for people to shop in your store instead of online?
Nope. We offer excellent service, excellent selection and clean, well lit store. That’s incentive enough. 

Is there a gaming club that’s active at your store?
No. Just regular store groups that meet every day.

Is there a contact board for finding games and other players?
We encourage customers to use Facebook for this, but I’ll admit it’s less than ideal.

What obscure products do you have hidden away for browsing customers to find?
We tend to avoid obscure, but we usually have a good selection of used role playing games. As we move to expand, we’ve pulled back from that though.

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