Cafe de SOYT
Play old-school Nintendo classics all day long at Albion's retro video game cafe.
As anyone fond of lounging away the day mashing buttons knows, gaming and coffee go hand in hand. That's the idea behind Cafe de SOYT, though the Albion coffee house would like to tempt you away from your couch and onto theirs.
Opened on Sandgate Road on April 8, the new venue brings gaming out of the house, beyond the arcade, into the cosy confines of a cafe. Customers can geek out over consoles, comic books, manga and pop culture while sipping caffeinated brews, hot chocolate, juice or soft drinks, and snacking on cheesecakes, tarts, muffins and brownies. The monthly rotation of machines and games will cycle through Sega, Nintendo, Playstation and Microsoft offerings, with the store's Atari collection currently being assembled. Themed sections also spread the Star Wars, Batman, Dr Who and anime love.
Unsurprisingly, Cafe de SOYT is a passion project for owner Eskabar Page, who has been a gaming and comic book collector for many years. "It was actually leaving a Supernova convention a couple of years ago [that] I had an idea," he explains. "That idea was to try and showcase what I had collected and spent my hard earned dollars on — because usually, who sees this? Your friends and family mostly. Otherwise it's hidden for no one to enjoy but yourself. There were a few ways I thought of doing this but ended up with the coffee house you see today."
Page says that Cafe de SOYT aims to submerge patrons in all things gaming, rather than just playing with a novelty concept. Expect new additions to their range as time goes by, plus an array of special events, with plans for a May the 4th celebration currently being thrown around.
If you're more of a casual gamer, don't worry. "I've tried to make it so a large demographic can walk in and familiarise themselves with at least something because we have a little bit of everything," Page reassures. With Super Mario painted on the walls, Rick and Morty's Mr Meeseeks on the chalkboard menu and Pokemon featuring too, that's easy to see. And with Brisbane currently boasting Netherworld's arcade bar, Super Combo's Street Fighter-themed burgers and the soon-to-open 1UP Arcade, it's never been easier to head out for some pop culture fun.