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The 10 best entertainment and gaming hotspots in Manchester

Dubbed the Capital of the North, Manchester is famed for being the epicentre of business, entertainment, and sports.

The city has been latching onto gaming and is teeming with Esports arenas and VR gaming hubs. 

It’s not all about digital experiences – you can also throw axes, chill at friendly casino establishments, and recreate the popular 90’s tv show “The Crystal Maze Live,” among other exciting activities.

Here’s more about the best spots to have some competitive fun in Manchester. 

NQ64 

With two locations in the city, one in Peter Street and another hidden away on an alley-street in the Northern Quarter, NQ64 is a fun-packed bar that doubles as a gaming zone.

It provides an 80’s nostalgia featuring classic retro games and arcades, including Mortal Kombat, Street Fighter II, Pac Man, Space Invaders, Super Mario Bros, and Tekken.

This establishment also boasts more recent classics such as Guitar Hero. 

Moreover, console lovers will be glad to know that NQ64 has several options in the niche, including Sega Mega Drive, N64, Super Nintendo, and Playstation games.

Wrapping it all up are neon colours and arcade-themed cocktails – like Princess Peach and Pac’s A Punch – that will make every gamer feel at home. 

Virtual Hideout 

If it sounds like a fantasy world for gamers, that’s because it is.

Located in the heart of Manchester, Virtual Hideout provides a virtual reality gaming experience with room-scale VR and over 100 unique games, horror experiences, and puzzles.

They even have VR hosts that will help tailor your sessions according to your gaming needs. 

This hideout is the one place to go for realistic, immersive gaming.

You can rent a room at Virtual Hideout, starting from £34 for an individual to £40 for a group of four, which is the maximum capacity of each room. 

Manchester235 Casino 

This list would be biased if it did not feature Manchester235 Casino.

It is a high-end luxury casino that provides the authentic Vegas brick and mortar experience without membership fees.

You can play the classics such as Blackjack, Roulette, Slots, Punto Banco, Three Card Poker, and much more. 

Before you start thinking this establishment is a place for the experts or the filthy rich, consider that Manchester235 welcomes everybody and provides free parking.

The casino also offers free lessons to novice players. You can leverage this unpaid service and learn to play various table games, even if you intend on eventually playing the games at another gaming house or in your favourite online casinos

Flight Club 

No, this place has nothing to do with aviation unless we talk about the darts flying across the room.

Flight Club is one of Manchester’s favourite gaming bars, offering a blend of delicious cocktails and interactive dart games that everyone can enjoy. 

There are 14 private spaces at the venue, a large bar area, and great music played by live DJs regularly.

It is located in Ship Canal House, 98 King St, M2 4WU. If you are wondering where to go for a birthday, post-pandemic reunion, work dos, and so on, this could be just the place. 

Whistle Punks Urban Axe Throwing 

Have you ever sat down and thought, “I’ve got to learn how to throw an axe”? Well, probably not.

Anyways, Whistle Punks gives you that opportunity, and it is so satisfying.

You may sling axes while competing against your friends or colleagues side by side, cheering and laughing at your mates as they get or miss the target. 

This establishment provides a fun-filled atmosphere with great music in the background and a shot at socialising between your throws.

There are experienced throwing coaches for the novices to get you up to speed in no time.

They are located on Unit 20, Atrium level, Great Northern Warehouse, 235 Deansgate, Manchester M3 4EN. 

Twenty Twenty Two 

Probably the best destination for some enjoyable Ping Pong action in Manchester, 2022 is a lovely bar in the underground on an unsuspecting alley, Dale Street, Manchester.

It doubles as an event venue and table games destination. The place is free every Monday, but each table costs £7 for every 30 minutes on any other day. 

Point Blank shooting 

This place is the UK’s first simulation shooting range, combining the classic experience with technology.

The result is exciting challenges that any lover of first-person shooter (FPS) games will love. 

You get to choose from a wide range of weapons before taking a position at the virtual range, which has varied scenarios to take away the monotony of a single shooting experience.

What’s more, you can have fun in groups of up to six participants when you book via the Point Blank website. Consider contacting the establishment if you wish to show up in a larger group. 

Arcade Club 

Arcade Club boasts three floors packed with the best arcade gaming entertainment, taking us back to the past three decades of gaming evolution.

Its establishment in Bury is the original venue, although they are now spreading the fun to Leeds and Blackpool. 

Stepping into the Arcade club introduces you to over 300 classics and modern arcade games alongside some old and current consoles.

There is also a VR room for a more modern experience. Topping it all up are cocktails for a bit of buzz. 

The Crystal Maze 

You may not know this if you are not a 90s kid, but the Crystal Maze was initially a popular game show devised by Jacques Antoine in 1990.

This 21st Century thrill has been recreated for us enthusiasts to try out our hand in the game, and you bet it is tremendously fun. 

It provides the ultimate team experience for friends, couples, family, or colleagues.

Not forgetting, it makes for a clever excuse to run and shout wildly while wearing satin bomber jackets. 

Junkyard Golf 

Junkyard Golf has carved quite a reputation since it arrived in Manchester a few years back, becoming a popular destination for first dates, friends, and team nights out.

They have given the classic crazy golf game a facelift, providing weirdly incredible holes – like the crazy jungle, scrapyard, and dark fairground challenges.

You also get a bright and colourful bar with excellent cocktails to enjoy. 

Conclusion

Manchester is not short of opportunities for explorers who love fun and entertainment.

From the arcades, consoles, and VR to table games, darts, shooting, and axes, the city’s got more than the average adventurer could bargain for. 

Photo by Carl Raw on Unsplash 

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