Gaming Shops - Generic

Interesting one…

In the guidelines it mentions gaming shops as being great places to socialise and that they would make a great waystop.


What if the games shop is a large chain with many branches? EG: in the UK we have Game stores, they sell Pokemon merch, and are obviously a popular location with people who play the games, but they are in most major towns and cities and would fall foul of the generic chain stores guidance.

What are peoples thoughts?

I would vote for that as a good place to socialise if they had places for people to play the games inside the store.

If its just selling games then probably would not vote for it.

I dont think the chain thing applies if it is a good place to socialise (ie has gaming spaces for friends, a cafe, or organises tournament etc). Plus I don’t think something that may have 1 per town is necessarily ineligible if it meets a criteria despite being a chain. Something like a Costa where there are so many in a good sized town that you cant even count them, probably not. But again, in a small place with not much else, sure, sell it to me as a good place to socialise and its fine.


If it helps, I had one overturned on appeal.
For Wayfarer purposes, given all context and guidance, if it meets eligibility criteria it’s not generic.


We have Games Workshop and similar indie games shops for tabletop gaming that usually host social gaming in the store. I’d include those. This is more a generic games store that sells Pokemon merch but doesn’t necessarily host anything specific, although I always found them good places to hangout with friends for a bit (admittedly before most games went digital).


I’m sure it’s one of those that a well written nomination would sway me on. I haven’t been to one, so I don’t know what kind of store it is, hence the nomination would help me decide.

Basically I don’t think being a chain has much to do with things if they’re meeting a specific criteria quite well. Ie a chain gym, thats a good place to exercise, a chain pub, that’s a good place to socialise, etc.

I guess I stop at places that are so common that you probably wouldn’t pick them as a place to meet a friend (ie my example of Costa when theres like… 12? in my town)

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I’d absolutely meet a friend in a coffee shop, chain or otherwise, so in terms of socialising, I’d say yes. But in terms of distinctive, no.

Similarly, a trail marker might not be distinctive, and I wouldn’t meet somebody there, but it’s certainly a big tick in terms of exercise and exploring.

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Oh I meant specifically for coffee… I’d pick an independent usually over a chain place. I do think they are distinct though. I can tell 1 costa from another because thry would be on different roads. Trail markers are always a tick from me! A trail to me ticks all 3 criteria! And they’re distinct again due to different locations and theyre designed to stand out so people following the trail can spot them.

I guess I’m saying in a large town where you have like 20-30 cafés, a Costa isnt the best nomination. But in a smaller place it would be.

Im just trying to say a chain isnt always ineligible, it depends on if it meets another criteria and then on whether I think being a chain in any way invalidates something, which it usually doesnt. And I dont think theres the same overload of gaming stores as there is coffee shops


I struggle with these when I see them up for review. They’re the sort of place that might appeal to those who like playing augmented reality games I suppose, but I think it needs some effort to sell them to reviewers, i.e. prove that they’re not just some generic retailer.

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I think Niantic is looking for local, independently owned gaming shops most of the time, especially in urban areas, but there can be exemptions made for chain stores, but these are rare and typically happen on appeal.

Now, where I live, we don’t have any chain non-video game stores; we have GameStop locations, but stores that specialize in TCG or board games like Magic The Gathering or DnD are mainly locally owned. I live near 1 that has been around for over 40 years; they do mainly sell comics, but they also have gaming supplies and hold events for these games from time to time.

Chains, in general, are just harder to get approved, especially when reviewed by the community. They may get through on appeals, but it depends on the supporting and additional info provided to the appeals team. Chains are harder to get approved in urban/suburban areas, as they tend to already have a large number of Wayspots or POIs that meet criteria, compared to a rural area where many people socialize at the only chain restaurant in town.

So, basically, it can be hit or miss with chain stores, with most nominations leaning towards miss.