The world has changed. We feel it in the autograph lines. We smell it in the cons. The Age of the Geek has arrived! The time has come to build a home where people can come together, make friends, and be around other people who love the same things they do without fear of judgment or harassment. A home where those nerds can geek out over their favorite TV shows, host weekly D&D campaigns, and enjoy some of the best craft beers, wines, ciders, and meads available. We need your help to finish the job!
At The Cloak & Blaster, we're building Florida a creative haven where nerds from all genres can geek out and get their game on. No more basements. No more sports bars. The Cloak & Blaster is coming.
Fully Funded in Just 36 Hours! Thank you so much for your overwhelming support!
Check out some of our press!
- [VIDEO] Fox 35 Orlando Evening Newscast
- [BLOG] 4 Color Rebellion - "Kickin It with Andrea Zimmerman"
- [NEWS] Central Florida Top 5
- [PODCAST] Nutty Bites Ep. 52 - Board Games
- [PODCAST] State of Games Ep. 54 - The One About Your Right to Party
- [PODCAST] Bourbon Lounge Ep. 105
Stretch Goals 1, 2 & 3 UNLOCKED!
Scroll down for more information on backer perks that have been unlocked.
But, we still need your help to achieve ...
And now for a little about our project ...
Andrea C. Zimmerman - Owner, Chief Redhead // Andrea is an avid gamer, geek girl, and all-around sci-fi and fantasy addict. She has spent her life loving and playing games, whether on a console, involving cards, or requiring dice. Professionally, she has almost a decade of experience working with social media and creative communications, spanning the corporate and non-profit sectors. She has worked alongside astronauts, Star Wars fanatics, and sports enthusiasts in order to market corporate culture and nurture social communities. Before and during college, Andrea worked for several years in the food service industry as a busser, hostess, waitress, and bar back. She also shadowed the Front of House manager scheduling staff, assisting with opening and closing procedures, and ordering stock for the bar. At a local deli and ice cream shop, Andrea was responsible for running the day-time operations (transactions, fulfilling orders, planning and distributor orders, sandwich prep, etc.) with guided management training from the owner. Our resident redhead oversees the creation and execution of all creative content to produce an innovative and engaging atmosphere for geeks, gamers and everyone in between.
Markus Zimmerman – Owner, Arch Brewer // Markus has been a gamer since he can remember. From Atari to Magic the Gathering, he's delved into every available genre. However, Markus hasn't allowed his love of gaming to put him in the stereotype of the "kid living in his mom's basement". Markus went on to college to become an Aerospace Engineer where he and two friends founded Project: Icarus. This project raised over $300,000 in four years and brought together over 100 students from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University ranging from engineering to business. This project, completed in 2005, is still the basis for the Embry-Riddle Aerospace Design curriculum. He's had a career with the Space Shuttle and now works in renewable energy where he serves as a full-time Six Sigma Black Belt and Project Manager. At home, Markus is a passionate brewer constantly trying new recipes and exploring formulas to develop the perfect homebrew.
But that's not all! We aren't flying blindly into this venture. Our team will also have a full-time manager for daily operations; a bar management consultant to make sure everything is set up properly; an IT wizard for all of our technology needs; and the typical business players such as a CPA, attorney, and commercial realtor.
Several years ago, over a particularly violent game of Munchkin, we started talking about our love for gaming and beer. It was then that Markus decided to get up for a refill and realized we had run out of libations! On top of that, the cat was meowing loudly and we didn't have any food in the house. Just when we were about to call it a night in frustration, it hit us - what if we didn't have to deal with any of this and could just GAME? It was then that we fully realized our dream to build a place to promote our passion for tabletop gaming. A place that incorporated great craft brews, ample space for gaming, and a sweet tavern atmosphere to really get the geek juices flowing. How cool would it be to transport yourself to Middle Earth for pints without having to worry about loud neighbors or limited kitchen supplies?
But unfortunately, we tabled the idea.
Last year, we honeymooned to Boston quite unexpectedly and it was the best decision ever. There we fell head-over-heels in love with the numerous corner pubs, taverns and bars decorating the city streets. In Boston, a great neighborhood bar awaits you at every turn with open arms. After reveling in the impressive craft brew collection, tavern nooks, and friendly community, the decision was made: The Cloak & Blaster (C&B) was finally going to happen; no, it needed to happen!
Our goal is to provide a creative, unique space where you can enjoy great food, tasty drinks and quality gaming with your friends. Hey, you can even make new ones! Don’t worry about the frat boys or sports on every television; we appreciate your fandoms and screen Doctor Who or the latest Game of Thrones instead. Forget the stress of cleaning your house for company or deciding whose turn it is to host! We will offer a one-stop shop for geeks and gamers everywhere; a safe place where you can geek out and game on.
Not your typical bar, C&B will have an old-school tavern atmosphere reminiscent of your favorite fantasy campaign setting, where video games, roleplaying games, card games, board games and miniatures can come together, peacefully, and have a great time. Think dark woods, dragon skulls, torches, and shields. And for our video gamers, we'll have a section set aside just for you to make sure technology has a place, too.
Our goal is to host an impressive selection of craft beers, wines, ciders and meads (yes, mead!) with monthly events to spotlight local home brewers. We'll host gaming tournaments, themed events, movie screenings, exclusive publisher parties, and oh yeah, we'll even sell the games so you can buy and enjoy them after hours.
Initially, we will offer appetizers and easy pub grub (think french fries, sandwiches, dips, etc) to fuel your all-night gaming sessions. There will be snacks, candy, energy drinks, and sodas - but don't worry, we're also focusing on incorporating a healthy menu for those interested in lighter choices. Vegetarian? We have you covered, too!
*Dessert offerings will vary with availability. We hope to make new ones fresh daily.
With nerdy beverage offerings and great gaming foods, C&B can sustain your gameplay for as long as your heart desires.
But hey, there's more!
And for the really special geeks...
Our V.I.G. (Very Important Gamer) membership* gets you some great perks and is included at a discounted rate for Kickstarter backers! Inspired by the highly coveted and all-inclusive badge level at our favorite convention, GenCon Indy, the V.I.G. offers regulars a chance to enjoy a free appetizer on their birthday, exclusive parties, and free play on all Tier 1 and Tier 2 games. (*These membership cards will now be 3D printed and customized ONLY for Kickstarter backers! Get one now!)
There's tiers? What does that mean?
Our gaming library will be divided into two tiers in order to make provisions for larger and more expensive games.
- Tier 1 - Your basic card and tabletop games. Examples include Munchkin, Dungeon Roll, Monopoly, Settlers of Catan, and Cards Against Humanity. (FREE TO PLAY FOR EVERYONE)
- Tier 2 - Bigger, better games that require hefty table space, cost more money, and take some time to play. Examples include Firefly: The Game, Descent, Axis and Allies, Ticket to Ride, and all miniatures. (CHARGE FOR PUBLIC; FREE FOR V.I.G. MEMBERS)
So how is this going to work?
As it stands, The Cloak & Blaster is scheduled to open in April 2014 in East Orlando, near the Waterford Lakes and University of Central Florida area. The success of this Kickstarter campaign directly correlates to the level of awesomeness we are able to achieve in our space.
We've raised most of our initial funding through private investors in order to open a basic beer bar, but we really need the community's help to open our doors. Every dollar raised on Kickstarter means another next-gen console, better features, and a richer experience catered to YOU. This campaign is vital in establishing the high-quality, themed environment that the Florida gaming community deserves. Our Kickstarter campaign will help us reach our end funding goal and establish the final touches to really make our pub a unique and engaging experience.
Licensing and Media (Film/TV) - $2,000
This covers the purchase of our media library to make sure we can happily and legally screen geek cult classic films and television shows to coincide with our geeky events. You won't miss out on the next episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. or Doctor Who with us.
Electrical and Lighting - $1,500
We want to raise this amount to install custom beer-bottle lighting fixtures around the pub, created by a local friend and glassblower. This portion will also go toward updating current bar lighting and installing visual glowing rune effects.
Custom Gaming Tables - $3,000
We are personally constructing custom gaming tables that provide a specific space for your drink that WON'T damage the game. Since there will be a lot of beer and gaming, and this is a proper tabletop gaming pub, we want to provide the best possible solution for tables. This money will also allow us to modify any existing booths in the space. (The number of gaming tables is dependent on our final realized space.)
Game Library - $3,000
Our current budget includes a gaming library, but it's nowhere near the size we're dreaming up. This money will ensure we have the biggest gaming collection in the state, allowing you and your party to play the best and greatest titles in tabletop and video gaming.
Technology - $4,000
This money will be spent purchasing next-gen consoles and accessories for our video gaming area. Our current budget allows for adequate televisions and gear, but this portion will allow us to keep up with next-gen gaming trends.
Fees - $1,500
We wanted to be clear about what we're bringing home from this campaign. We will lose 10% of the total amount raised due to fees from Kickstarter and Amazon payments. This is reflected in our goal breakdown, but does not include fulfillment costs.
Our initial $15,000 goal has been met in the first 36 hours! We've slain Stretch Goal #1, #2 and #3 - but there's one more goal waiting for us! We have received overwhelming response from the community and have one last big goal to finish off in glorious victory!
We will have a single cooler of bottled beers, ciders and meads when we open, but with this stretch goal, we can expand that selection and offer more unique choices. We'll also purchase beer-specific glassware so that every Guinness is served in a Guinness glass, every Stella is served in a chalice, and beers taste how the brewer intended.
Backer Bonus --- All Kickstarter membership ID cards for the Very Important Gamer (V.I.G.) club will be produced on a 3D printer to weather any wallet, and customized with your name and character class of choice (Ex: barbarian, warrior, mage, space ranger, etc.)
We will have television screens in our video game lounge, as well as a few near the bar. With this stretch goal, we will be able to upgrade those TVs to bigger, better versions of their former selves. We will also be able to purchase and connect next-gen consoles at the bar so you can play games and order drinks in the most efficient manner possible.
Backer Bonus --- All backers will receive a custom die created exclusively for The Cloak & Blaster.
We know miniatures can be an expensive hobby with tons of figures, props and terrains to purchase. Let us front the cost instead! If we hit $30,000, we will buy full sets of miniature terrains (fantasy, sci-fi, and dungeon) for use by YOU with your favorite campaign. And speaking of campaigns, we will also add RPG campaign guidebooks to our available gaming library for free usage throughout your gaming session.
Backer Bonus --- If we hit $30,000, then we will start work on a special beer just for YOU, the backers. At this level, we will begin creating The Cloak & Blaster's first official homebrew with your input. We'll keep you involved with polls on flavors and names, as well as behind-the-scenes video of the process. Once we open, this recipe will be unveiled in our very first homebrew spotlight party as the Kickstarter-inspired brew!
Backer Bonus --- We're bringing in a professional photographer to take YOUR picture with the TARDIS and The Doctor at our Grand Opening celebration in April! You will also receive a custom green-tinted pint glass commemorating our bar and the first official C&B brew!
We can't wait to open our doors. Thank you so much for your support! Onward to victory!
Risks and challenges
Our biggest challenge after the campaign will be staying on track for our April 2014 opening, alongside fulfilling Kickstarter pledges. The City of Orlando will determine the schedule for our licensing and permitting process for the space. In order to ensure this process is not delayed, we have sought the assistance of our commercial realtor and attorney to keep us completely in line with county restrictions. Because we are only requesting a beer and wine license, we will not run into the same schedule delays for full liquor licensing.
In order to fulfill all pledges on time, we have assembled a team of volunteers to organize, package, and ship out all rewards. Each perk has been planned prior to launch so that we are able to fulfill on our end.
Quality of service and success are challenges we will face once The Cloak & Blaster is open. In order to mitigate this, we will focus on efficiency utilizing Lean Six Sigma practices and bar management consultants to ensure all operations are functioning appropriately. We have also invested in a state-of-the-art POS system and extensive training for our staff, to include alcohol, food safety, and of course, gaming, to ensure the best possible experience for all of our customers.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)