Tucked into the bustling far corner of Simei MRT is an unassuming cafe that serves not food, but boardgames. Basecamp Cafe is easy to miss if you do not know what you’re looking for. The only thing directing you to its true nature are the posters outside of the covered wallpapered windows.
The location is host to Cardboard Crew, an events company which holds tabletop and boardgame meetups throughout the week alongside game designer workshops. On busy days, there are cheers and merrymaking from the tight-knit community. That said, the regulars are warm and friendly, fully welcoming of newcomers into the board gaming hobby!
The spacious cafe is filled with cushy sofas and adequately lit with soft lighting, contributing to its cosy ambiance. It’s larger tables can accommodate groups of 8, so smaller groups or individuals need not fear the lack of people to play with at Basecamp!
With a library of over 300 games donated by or loaned from local collectors, it has one of the most impressively varied public collection. Passionate volunteers rush around the table, teaching their favourite and most recommended selections, tailored for each group.
Social games such as Avalon or Secret Hitler are crowd favourites, alongside modern classics like Azul and Splendor. You can also play famous publications like Wingspan, harder finds like Medici, and even 18xx games. Click here to view a full list of their games!
Basecamp Cafe usually operates from 2 p.m. till 11 p.m. on Saturdays, and 6.30 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays. Check out their full schedule at Cardboard Crew’s Facebook page! They are often open during public holidays too, celebrating with special events such as overnight gaming sessions and prize giveaways.
A session of gaming (~ 4 hours) starts as low as $6 per pax, with an additional $1 charge to play all the way through till closing time. Basecamp is also committed to helping local designers and have a small inventory of Singapore-designed games up for sale. A rather comprehensive selection of card sleeves, Boardgame-themed face masks, and even dice soap are also available for purchase.
Although it is a pity that the cafe itself does not offer food, Basecamp is located just next to both Eastpoint Mall and a Kopitiam where you can grab a quick bite before getting right back to gaming. However, the cafe does offer canned drinks at the low, low price of $1! The funds collected goes a long way to sustaining the non-profit space.
Basecamp Cafe has been our go-to place for board gaming and it feels like home to us. It’s comfortable ambiance, fair pricing and incredible game selection are reasons why we travel all the way to Simei!
Basecamp is perfect for…
– Large groups of friends and family (limited to 8, of course) looking for casual fun or a space to relax.
– Small groups or individuals new to the hobby and looking to learn new games.
– Avid Boardgamers looking for hard-to-find games and tough competition.
Basecamp is good for…
– Roleplaying DMs & players looking for a regular space.
– Wargamers, since war games are available and Basecamp’s large tables are suitable for war games.
– Game shoppers, since Basecamp has a small retail front committed to local designers and interesting accessories.
Basecamp is bad for…
– Couples looking for a private date, since you will be invited to play in larger groups.
– Tabletop Miniature gamers (Warhammer 40K), since Basecamp does not provide terrains.
– Cardgamers, since Basecamp does not have a retail front catered to trading card games.
The lads from TabletopTavern are on an adventure to discover Boardgame Cafes situated on the sunny island of Singapore. Our quest is to provide you with the most informative Boardgame Cafe Reviews. Subscribe to our monthly newsletter to catch our latest Boardgame Cafe Reviews!
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