Mana No More…

m1Gamers and lovers of great times in a night scene built just for us. It saddens me to report that The Mana Bar in Brisbane is saving its game save and calling it a night. May 24 they are closing up shop.

This has occurred within a space of a year that the Melbourne extension closed August 2014.

From a personal stand point I am truly disappointed by these closures. I remember the first time I got to go to The Mana Bar in Brisbane one trip and I had a very great night! Gaming, getting involved with new people, playing games together broke the ice a lot easier with others, drinking, the whole place was gaming themed but still remained classy. I wish I had this place when I was hitting the nightclub scene a few years back in my town. I would have been there every weekend.

I remember wishing that a place like this would exist, then when it happened and wasn’t in my town I got excited about visiting The Mana Bar when I made a trip to Brisbane again. It became someone of a destination for me and I’m sure it also was for many others. I recall a great vibe, great atmosphere and I felt so comfortable for the first time in a “nightclub” environment. As if it was a place just for me.

I don’t know what was going on behind closed doors to make the business close up shop; I don’t want to or need to know. The main factor is that they are closing, it is a sad day.m2

Guy Blomberg — who founded the bar alongside Pras Moorthy, Ben ‘Yahtzee’ Croshaw and Shay Leighton — gives this statement.

“The Mana Bar was such a wild concept, and I think where it really succeeded was in breaking down the stigma that the only people that play video games are stereotypical pasty white nerds in their parent’s basement. It really did become a great community space, and I hope the lasting (probably slightly drunken) memories people will have are of the friendships formed through it.

It also brought some international attention to Australia and the gaming scene over here, which led to other video game bar venues opening up all around the world. The Mana Bar may have closed, but the concept lives on, and if nothing else I’m proud of that legacy.”

It’s a shame, Melbourne and Brisbane felt like they were prime locations for places like these to thrive. Maybe it’s just a sign of the times at an economical level, but that’s another story altogether. For now on behalf of the Novastream team, I would like to wish The Mana Bar staff and its people all the best in their future endeavours and to game on.

– Chris Hunt

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