Raymond Embry used to travel a lot for work and while visiting various places across the country, he noticed various entertainment options at different places. He had seen gaming lounges and virtual reality cafes. He had seen basketball-related entertainment and Nerf war zones.
But he had never experienced all of it under one roof. So, after years of dreaming about it and nearly a year putting it altogether, he opened Press Play Gaming Lounge in June.
Ultimately, Embry just wanted to provide a safe space for families to have fun together and every square foot of his facility in an old Marsh supermarket at 1004 E. Main St. in Brownsburg was designed with that goal in mind.
The first amenity I noticed when I walked in for the first time were the family pods that can seat 10-13 people. Each pod includes a large sectional couch, a bar table and chairs, a bean bag and a dedicated smart TV that can be used to watch Netflix, Hulu and many other streaming services or play video games through a connected Xbox system.
The pods can be rented for a few hours or an entire day. Embry said the pods tend to be a good central point or home base for families while there. He has noticed that the pods are primarily utilized by adults as a place to relax while the kids are off enjoying activities throughout the rest of the facility.
Families or even individuals don't have to rent a pod to experience Press Play. The facility does have an area of free seating, too, or you may not even need a place to sit if your family stays busy experiencing all the activities.
Press Play boasts 8 virtual reality booths with a ton of virtual reality games and experiences. While you will find a few arcade games within the facility, too, Embry said he wanted to focus on physical activity at Press Play.
If you have never experienced virtual reality, you really need to give it a try. It amazes me how it tricks your brain into thinking what you are seeing and doing is real, and the technology just keeps getting better.
3-Point Challenge/Foam Wars
You have to go all the way to the back of the building to find this area that any kid or kid at heart will love. I mean who doesn't like to shoot 3-pointers and beat their buddy to win a prize.
But if basketball isn't your thing, how about choosing your favorite Nerf weapon and going into a 1,500-square-foot room with plenty of obstacles to run around and hide behind as you battle with your friends.
BEAM For Kids
An unexpected activity that I personally had never seen before but that younger kids will absolutely love is this interactive play area where games are projected down onto the floor. Press Play has about 20-30 games in their BEAM library for the kids to enjoy stomping on and running and playing.
Picture a cat with a string or laser light, and I think you will get the gist of what this is like. Watching your little ones interacting with the games has to be entertaining for parents, too.
Food & Drinks
But perhaps the most unexpected part of Press Play for me was the cafe and bar areas that are located in different parts of the building. The cafe boasted an impressive stadium-style menu that included chicken wings, BBQ sliders, chili cheese dogs and much more.
Adults can pull up a chair in their bar area or get a delicious alcoholic beverage of their choice served to their family pod while the kids play.
They have dedicated two rooms for those wanting to celebrate a birthday or any other reason to celebrate. Their smaller party room seats 15-20 people and their larger party room can host up to 40 guests.
If you purchase either party room, all of your guests get unlimited gaming in all of the areas throughout the facility. They do have add-on packages available for an additional cost that includes food. Party rooms must be reserved in advance and start at $300 for two hours.
Pricing & Other Info
Embry also designated an area near the entrance as an area for music. He envisions eventually having live entertainment come in, but for now it is a table set up for DJs and every Friday is usually karaoke night at Press Play. They also host game nights every Thursday.
They offer various pricing options including for specific activities as well as 1-hour, 2-hour, day-long and weekend passes. Click here for more detailed pricing information.
You need to check their website prior to visiting for their latest hours for that week, but at least starting out, they have been open four days a week, Thursdays-Sundays.