Having a space dedicated to your hobbies profoundly impacts the sense of immersion and joy you get out of them. If you’re into fitness, transforming your garage or basement into a weight room makes it easier to really focus and achieve great results; if you enjoy woodworking, having a dedicated workshop is essential to keeping your tools easily accessible. This same principle applies to gaming as well.
While you can play PC games on any old desk, setting up a dedicated gaming space helps you achieve a level of immersion that totally changes the gaming experience. As video games grow increasingly cinematic, with stunning visuals and blockbuster soundtracks, you want to be sure that your setup can do them justice.
“A proper gaming setup can massively enhance your level of engagement in the game,” says Brad Lunt, CEO of GoatGuns. This premium collectible toy model firearm brand provides shooter fans with intricate, non-firing, build-it-yourself 1:3 scale models of their favorite in-game weapons. “It helps turn the casual play into a full-on experience. It’s kind of like a movie theater, for one.”
Below are some key elements that no serious gamer should go without.
The foundation of every gaming room, a proper desk, and a chair, make a massive difference to both your in-game performance and your posture in the long term. Normal desk chairs cause your spine to bear the weight of your upper body, encouraging you to slip into a slouching posture. Be sure to look for a chair with features such as lumbar support, adjustable armrests, and a padded backrest, as these chairs increase your comfort level while gaming and promote better posture in general.
Having a quality desk is also important. Adjustable desks require more investment but are unparalleled in personalization and comfort. If you decide not to go the adjustable route, it’s still a good idea to have a large enough desk to let you move your mouse comfortably. A big desk can also help avert disaster if you keep food and/or drinks nearby while playing.
Getting creative with the lighting in your gaming room is one of the most effective ways to bring the atmosphere of the game world straight out into real life. Having dim mood lighting set up around your desk and monitor accentuates a game’s graphics better than standard lighting while being easier on your eyes than playing in the dark. For a truly immersive experience, dynamic lighting that changes in response to onscreen action or sound is unmatched.
“Lighting is a powerful mood-enhancer, and having maximal control over it helps you really elevate your experience,” says Lunt. “It’s one of the best ways to mark a room as a true gaming space.”
As with lighting, sound plays a huge role in getting you into the game. In many games, hearing subtle changes in the music or ambient sound can alert you to nearby danger (or treasure), improving your performance. A high-quality gaming headset is a great way to pick up on these nuances and be transported while you play. If you invest in a good headset, it’s a good idea to have a specially designed holder to prevent wear and tear.
If your gaming room has been soundproofed, opting for high-quality speakers rather than headphones is another terrific option. A good speaker setup can highlight the bombastic, larger-than-life quality of many games’ music and audio design.
If you love video games, there’s a good chance that you love collecting things in general–after all, collecting in-game items is a mechanic as old as gaming. Unlocking special characters or finding rare weapons can be one of the most memorable experiences in a game. It shouldn’t be a surprise, then, that one of the best ways to put your love for gaming on display is to put out real-life models of those in-game collectibles.
Whether it’s a statuette of a beloved character or a favorite gun from a first-person shooter, collectibles serve as embodiments of your best gaming memories and help invite others into your world. Like memorabilia from a favorite sports team, they are a sign of affiliation that grows in significance as time goes on.
“The games we love can have a huge impact on us, and collectibles are one of the best ways to represent this,” says Lunt. “Whether they’re from a fantasy world or a different period of our history, collectibles help fire up our imagination and creativity. They help you get into the game and help you bring the game out into the world with you.”
With any or all elements of this winning combo in place, you can be sure that your gaming room will be truly next level.