Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Imperium: E-sports Bar & Video Game Lounge

First things first - Happy 2014, everyone! So after my slight hiatus last December, here I am starting the new year with a new post! :D I've actually had this on my drafts for weeks now, I just didn't feel like posting anything until today. Sorry about that, I'll just try to make it up to you with this entry about a cool new spankin' place for gamers! :D
Exciting, no? :)

When Mike and his friends heard about Imperium, the first e-sports bar and video game lounge in the Philippines, they were thrilled - so thrilled that just after a few days of learning about it, we decided to head out to Pasig City to see what all the fuss is about!

Check out their Tron-inspired interiors!
Our visit fell just a day before their grand opening - where they had a night of tournaments, games and special guests! So if you're a gamer and you weren't in attendance that day, well, you missed out on a lot!

I'm no serious gamer, but I did enjoy my fair share of games during my high school/college years. These include The Sims, Final Fantasy 8 & 9, Spyro the Dragon, Mortal Combat, Suikoden 1 & 2, Twisted Metal, and Crash Team Racing. I even played Flyff Online for a year or two, and Call of Duty one summer with guy friends in college.

Still, I'm going to be honest and tell you that I don't know a lot about the gaming scene (especially the technical stuff), so let me just give you a tour of the place and talk about what we learned from the owner Raphael Gancayco.
Raphael grew up in the US where e-sports has become really huge. For example, did you know that the 2013 League of Legends World Championships was held at THE Staples Center? That's what led Raphael to opening Imperium. He believes that e-sports can be as big as real sports and that Filipinos have the potential to make an impact in that field as well. "I'm here to help the gaming community in the Philippines," he said. Imperium was built for professional and casual gamers who want to get better or just try new games, and for e-sports fans/regular bar-goers who simply enjoy watching people play.

You can play alone..
Or with friends!
You can even order a drink or two while you're at it!
Imagine sitting on the bar, drinking beer while playing FIFA or COD!
Browse through video game cases which also serve as their menu! #medyocool
What differs Imperium from regular computer shops is their chill and cozy atmosphere. They charge P120/hour on their PS4 and Xbox One consoles; P100/hr on Wii U, Xbox 360 and PS3; and P60/hr on their PCs. Some of you might think it's a bit pricey, but I personally think it's a premium worth paying for. After all, it's an experience you'll only get here (and in places in Europe/United States. Haha). But seriously, wouldn't you want to be part of a community with the same interests as you? I know I would. :)
By the way, they charge a 100-peso consumable door fee which may be used toward the rental of PCs /consoles or for your food and/or beverage orders.

That's it for the virtual tour. To find out what Mike had to say about this gaming haven, do check out his review here.
Photo by Mike Alegre

Imperium is located at Unit 6B 2nd Floor Metrowalk Commercial Complex Meralco Avenue, 1600 Pasig. They're open everyday from 5pm-2am. For inquiries, call them at 571-9534 / 09062487476 or message them on their Facebook page.